We've talked a lot about the changes being made to Fox's Major League Baseball coverage over the past week. Most of it, however, was dealt in the shift in their game broadcasts. News today reminds us of one of the first things Fox announced as part of their upfront for Fox Sports 1.
It was sort of the forgotten element of FS1, but now it's come to fruition. MLB Whiparound will air Monday-Friday on the network (10 p.m. ET on all nights but Wednesdays, when it'll air at midnights), putting it right up against both ESPN's Baseball Tonight and MLB Network's MLB Tonight. Starting March 31st, three baseball shows at the same hour.
The show will essentially feature much of the cast and crew of Fox Sports 1's Saturday pre-game show, which debuts April 5th at 12:30 p.m. ET. However, with that show's host (Kevin Burkhardt) busy on his regular gig as field reporter for the Mets on SNY, Chris Myers and Ryan Field will split duties as host. Field will also host the occasional FS1 pre-game show, while Myers has past experience doing play-by-play for MLB on Fox.
As far as analysts go, MLB Whiparound has the same cast as Fox's Saturday studio team. Former players Gabe Kapler, Eric Karros, CJ Nitkowski and Frank Thomas will all make up a rotating cast. Notable: all four have played in the big leagues within the last decade.
I asked Fox's executive producers John Entz and Erik Shanks what they wanted that would make it different from the other two available shows. They rattled off wanting it to be "at a pace baseball isn't used to," with the show turning around highlights very quickly. Happening in the 10-11 p.m. ET hour means it won't really be a recap show, as numerous games will still be going on. With the talent assembled, I'm more than willing to give MLB Whiparound a go, but it's going to be a stern challenge going directly up against ESPN once again.no comments