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Radio matters

Posted by mikelink45 , 29 November 2017 · 760 views

radio announcers pace of game rural listeners
Radio matters I read the announcement that the Twins were going back on to WCCO and I was delighted. It did not get as much attention now as it would have 30 years ago (of course they were on WCCO then) but that is because TV and all the cable networks have changed the way that we enjoy the game.
​Growing up in Minneapolis in the 1950's I would take my little transistor radio to bed with me and hide under the pillows to listen to Earl Gillespie and Blaine Walsh tell me about the Milwaukee Braves game. In the dark those voices brought the game to life and I felt like I knew the announcers and the team. I even rooted for them when a foul ball was hit and their fishing net would come out of the broadcast booth to try and catch it.

They painted word pictures and made the game something that Television could not. Today we talk about pace of game and I, like so many others, really do mind that the games I listened to are so much longer - https://www.beyondtheboxscore.com/2015/1/29/7921283/baseball-game-length-visual-analysis In those years of transistor radio enjoyment the game was done in less that 2 1/2 hours. I would not have made it through the 3+ hours that the same game takes today - I would have fallen asleep or I would have been busted. And of course TV is part of the problem. No forced radio time outs they could put their ads in during the lulls that are part of the game. The lulls in activity did not stand out like they do on TV where they have to run the replays 5 or 6 times. The conversation in the booth seemed to involve me and I was sometimes sorry when they got cut off by the play on the field.
​When the Twins came I heard Halsey Hall who was always good for mangling the narrative, the smooth Ray Scott and Bob Wolff for 1961; replaced by Herb Carneal which made the broadcast the best ever! So baseball remains a radio sport for me, the best of all sports on radio. The chaos of moving parts in Hockey, Soccer, and Basketball do not lend themselves to thoughtful listening for me and I drift away quickly. Football is the only other sport I can listen to because like baseball there are lots of open moments between plays when the announcer and the analyst can talk and fill in the blanks. They enrich while the three continuous action sports are a race for the announcer to keep up.

I love the sound of a baseball game in the background whether driving or splitting wood. I enjoy it biking, hiking, sitting on the deck and watching the feeders. I can tune it out and still catch the sense of excitement when a play happens that I do not want to miss because the intensity of the voices. I know they will replay it in ways that make seem like I saw the play myself.

But then the Twins went on a search for something better - KSTP, TWTN, and KGQO. Since I am very rural I have no idea where the last two stations are and they do not broadcast out into the woods where I live. It is true that many of us in the rural landscape have television (even though I do not) and they get cable, but when you are in the rural areas there are farm chores, woodland chores, repairs to be made, things to do, even travel to be done and those are not places where you can watch TV.

When the Twins needed support in the past they had a ready support from the rural area, but then they built the new stadium and shut off the voice in the rural landscape. In recent years I was able to listen to an affiliate station in our area that carried the broadcast, but traveling further afield I do not have Sirius Radio so I searched, often in vain, for the Twins game. For a team that carries the State's name this is not acceptable.

So WCCO I am pleased that your are back. Not only can I now find the Twins, but you might even catch me listening to something else on your station, something I have not done since the Twins left. Will you bring back Danny and Corey or will there be a new voice? If I might suggest - Corey is quite good, but I think I have heard all of Danny's stories.

  • Oldgoat_MN, IndianaTwin and Platoon like this



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theBOMisthebomb
Nov 29 2017 06:38 PM
I guess going back to 'CCO is a good thing for the market they are targeting. I still have nightmarish flashbacks at having to listen to 'CCO in the car as a boy in the early 1980s and that "WCCO" jingle makes me break into cold sweats. To each his own, though. As for me, I cannot stand that AM static and background buzz.

I understand what you are saying, but KFAN and the other FM stations are good for the cities, not the state.CCO has that clear channel and it works, plus they used to have a great state network.I am assuming you might be in the cities so they are not essential to your listening pleasure, but I still do not know who those other stations are.

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theBOMisthebomb
Dec 02 2017 08:06 AM

I understand what you are saying, but KFAN and the other FM stations are good for the cities, not the state.CCO has that clear channel and it works, plus they used to have a great state network.I am assuming you might be in the cities so they are not essential to your listening pleasure, but I still do not know who those other stations are.

Since at least 60% of the state lives in the "cities" as you call it, it seems it would make sense to me to have a station that is based in the "cities" and doesn't sound like it was from two generations ago as the flagship of the MLB team. Well, if it helps people not from the "cities" to listen to the Twins on their transitor radios that is peachy keen by me. I am a "cities" person I guess, although I don't live in Minneapolis or St. Paul. I use technology from this century, like the internet, and the FSGO app, etc. so I am not the target audience for WCCO listeners.

 

Since at least 60% of the state lives in the "cities" as you call it, it seems it would make sense to me to have a station that is based in the "cities" and doesn't sound like it was from two generations ago as the flagship of the MLB team. Well, if it helps people not from the "cities" to listen to the Twins on their transitor radios that is peachy keen by me. I am a "cities" person I guess, although I don't live in Minneapolis or St. Paul. I use technology from this century, like the internet, and the FSGO app, etc. so I am not the target audience for WCCO listeners.

With all your options why would it matter to you?We all find a way to connect and I grew up in Minneapolis and I know how hard it is to realize that life is different in the rest of the state where I now live.

 

    • Platoon likes this
I really don't think with HD and the improvement in radios that the "static" is that harsh. And yes, XM does alleviate the issue for those who wish to subscribe. I did during the time I traveled the country. I loved it. But I also loved sitting on the bike in the parking lot of the Super 8 in Gillette Wyoming finishing a close game on 'CCO. And since it's the MINNESOTA Twins, not the Twin City Twins, statewide coverage is nice, for two reasons. It's not always easy to find the game when away from your local area. And in my area one of the stations that would take me west, skips a lot of games or innings for news and recipe shows. Lol
    • mikelink45 likes this
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theBOMisthebomb
Dec 04 2017 07:24 AM

 

With all your options why would it matter to you?We all find a way to connect and I grew up in Minneapolis and I know how hard it is to realize that life is different in the rest of the state where I now live.

Well, I have lived in small towns in Minnesota over the years and have family that still do live in small towns, so I know of what you speak.It doesn't "matter" to me, I was just stating my opinion, and going to WCCO is a downgrade for the majority of people. 

    • mikelink45 likes this

 

I really don't think with HD and the improvement in radios that the "static" is that harsh. And yes, XM does alleviate the issue for those who wish to subscribe. I did during the time I traveled the country. I loved it. But I also loved sitting on the bike in the parking lot of the Super 8 in Gillette Wyoming finishing a close game on 'CCO. And since it's the MINNESOTA Twins, not the Twin City Twins, statewide coverage is nice, for two reasons. It's not always easy to find the game when away from your local area. And in my area one of the stations that would take me west, skips a lot of games or innings for news and recipe shows. Lol

Nice comments - I too would listen while on my bike and often when I am just walking the state forest roads around my home.The chatter from a baseball game is soothing. 

 

Network might matter now more than a station.I do remember not only WCCO, but WGN out of Chicago (I heard some of Kolfax's perfect game there) and KMOX out of St. Louis (with Jack Buck and Harry Carey) great baseball station.It is hard to find games in the remote areas and clear channels is a great thing out there, rather than having to change channels every 40 miles.