List of American League Division Series broadcasters
The following is a list of the national television and radio networks and announcers who have covered the American League Division Series throughout the years. It does not include any announcers who may have appeared on local radio broadcasts produced by the participating teams.
- TNT was scheduled to air three entire Division Series games in 2011 due to conflicts with TBS. On October 1, it aired Game 2 of the Tampa Bay Rays vs. the Texas Rangers at 7 p.m. ET, which overlapped with the end of Game 1 of the St. Louis Cardinals vs. the Philadelphia Phillies and the continuation of Game 1 of the Detroit Tigers vs. the New York Yankees on TBS. (The latter was also to have been Game 2, but Game 1 was suspended after 1½ innings due to rain.) On October 2, it aired the rescheduled Game 2 between the Tigers and the Yankees at 3 p.m. ET, two hours before Game 2 of the Arizona Diamondbacks vs. the Milwaukee Brewers on TBS. On October 4, it aired Game 3 of the Diamondbacks vs. the Brewers at 9:30 p.m. ET, one hour after Game 3 of the Tigers vs. the Yankees started on TBS.
- For the 2012 and 2013 seasons, TBS has been awarded the rights to televise both Wild Card Playoff games that occur on the day before the Division Series games. In exchange, MLB Network has been awarded the rights to televise two of the Division Series games that previously belonged to TBS.
- Beginning in 2014, when Fox Sports began a new television contract with Major League Baseball, FS1 airs 40 regular season MLB games (mostly on Saturdays), along with up to 15 post-season games (eight Divisional Series games and one best-of-7 League Championship Series). The deal resulted in a reduction of MLB coverage on the Fox network, which will air 12 regular season games, the All-Star Game, and the World Series.
In 2000, NBC was caught in the dilemma of having to televise a first round playoff game between the New York Yankees and Oakland Athletics over the first presidential debate between George W. Bush and Al Gore. NBC decided to give its local stations the option of carrying the debate or the baseball game. If the NBC affiliate decided to carry the debate, then local Pax affiliate could carry the game. However, if there was no Pax availability and the local NBC affiliate aired the debate (which actually occurred in most NBC affiliates), then that market was shut out of the baseball telecast.
- Skip Caray filled-in for Bob Costas on NBC's coverage of the 2000 New York-Oakland Division Series because Costas had just finished anchoring NBC's prime time coverage of the Summer Olympic Games from Sydney, Australia. Meanwhile, NBC used Bob Wischusen as a field reporter (filling-in for Jim Gray, who like Bob Costas, was covering the Sydney Olympics) for Game 1 of the ALDS.
- ABC Family's coverage of the Division Series was produced by ESPN. The reason that games were on ABC Family instead of ESPN was because The Walt Disney Company (ESPN's parent company) bought Fox Family from News Corporation. The ABC Family/ESPN inherited Division Series package was included in Fox's then exclusive television contract with Major League Baseball (initiated in 2001). ABC Family had no other choice but to fulfill the contract handed to them. The only usage of the ABC Family "bug" was for a ten second period when returning from a commercial break (in the lower right corner of the screen).
- Former longtime Tigers announcer Ernie Harwell served as a special guest commentator for two innings in Game 3 of the 2006 Tigers-Yankees series.
Turner Sports provided a provisional plan in which if a League Division Series game televised on TBS ran into the start of the next LDS game scheduled to air on TBS, then TNT would provide supplementary coverage of the latter games' early moments. To be more specific, all games in the Division Series round were presented back-to-back, with each game scheduled for a 3½-hour window. If a game exceeded this window, the first pitch of the next game would be switched to TNT. If a game ended within 3½ hours, the studio team would return for interstitial programming.
- In 2007, TBS switched the starts of four games to TNT in the Division Series round because the previous games exceeded the time limit. TNT was also scheduled to air Game 4 of the Diamondbacks-Cubs series, which overlapped with Game 3 of the Red Sox-Angels series, but the former game was not played; the night before, the D-Backs completed a three game sweep of the Cubs.
- 1995 marked the only year of postseason coverage provided by "The Baseball Network", which was a revenue sharing joint venture between Major League Baseball, ABC and NBC. "The Baseball Network" was also scheduled to cover the Division Series in 1994, but plans were scrapped when a strike caused the postseason to be canceled. All games in the first two rounds (including the League Championship Series) were scheduled in the same time slot for regional telecasts. Initially, under the alternating six year plan, ABC would cover the Division Series in even numbered years (as well as the World Series in even numbered years) while NBC would cover the Division Series in odd numbered years (in even numbered years, they would get the rights to the All-Star Game and League Championship Series).
- From 1996-2000, NBC aired LDS games on Tuesday/Friday/Saturday nights. Fox aired LDS games on Wednesday/Thursday nights, Saturdays in the late afternoon, plus Sunday/Monday nights (if necessary). Meanwhile, ESPN carried many afternoon LDS contests. At this point, all playoff games were nationally televised (mostly in unopposed timeslots).
|1981||Oakland Athletics/Kansas City Royals||ABC||Al Michaels||Jim Palmer|
|New York Yankees/Milwaukee Brewers||ABC||
Keith Jackson (Games 1-3, 5)
Don Drysdale (Game 4)
|Don Drysdale and Howard Cosell|
- In 1981, as means to recoup revenue lost during a players strike, Major League Baseball set up a special additional playoff round (as a prelude to the League Championship Series). ABC televised the American League Division Series while NBC televised the National League Division Series. The Division Series round wouldn't be officially instituted until 14 years later. Games 3 of the Brewers/Yankees series and Royals/Athletics series were aired regionally. On October 10, Keith Jackson called an Oklahoma-Texas college football game for ABC and missed Game 4 of the Milwaukee-New York series. In Jackson's absence, Don Drysdale filled-in for him on play-by-play alongside Howard Cosell. Bob Uecker was originally named to join Al Michaels and Jim Palmer on one of ABC's crews, but the network excused him due to the involvement of the Brewers (for whom Uecker was a local radio announcer) in the ALDS.
|1981||Oakland Athletics/Kansas City Royals||CBS||Ned Martin||Bill White|
|New York Yankees/Milwaukee Brewers||CBS||Ernie Harwell||Curt Gowdy|
|Year||Series||Flagship station||Play-by-play #1||Play-by-play #2||Color commentators|
|1997||Cleveland-New York (AL)||
WABC-AM (New York (AL))
|Seattle-New York (AL)|
- Yoder, Matt (30 September 2014). "Your MLB Postseason Announcing Schedule: Part I". Awful Announcing.
- Fang, Ken (30 September). "Turner Sports Unveils Announcing Crews for MLB Wild Card Games & League Division Series". Fang's Bites. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
- Costa, Brandon (5 October 2012). "MLB Network Aims To Make Its Mark With First Division Series Games". Sports Video Group. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- Fang, Ken (4 October 2012). "TBS Assigns Announcing Crews To Wild Card Games & Two League Division Series". Fang's Bites. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
- Fang, Ken (26 September 2011). "TBS Announces League Division Series Schedule From Friday Through Monday". Fangsbites.com. Wordpress.
- Reynolds, Mike (September 29, 2011). "TBS Sets Schedule For First Four Days Of MLB Postseason Coverage". Multichannel News. Retrieved October 1, 2011.
- TBS Announces 2010 League Division Series Schedule & Announcer Assignments
- Bloom, Barry M. (17 May 2012). "TBS to televise Wild Card playoff games". MLB.com. MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
- "MLB on Fox: New voices, channel, platforms". Retrieved April 2, 2014.
- "2001 ALDS – Game 3". MLB.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- "1999 ALDS – Game 5". MLB.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- 9/28/1996 NBC/WNWO Commercials Part 20 on YouTube
- "1996 ALDS – Game 2". MLB.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- "1995 ALDS – Game 2". MLB.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- "1995 ALDS – Game 5". MLB.com. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- 1995 MLB on NBC Promo (Divisional Playoffs).wmv on YouTube
- Bock, Hal (October 8, 1981). "New Approach to TV Sports". Tri City Herald. Associated Press. p. 31.
- Associated Press (October 2, 1981). "Orioles' Palmer Joins ABC Broadcast Crew". Palm Beach Post. p. D2.
- Associated Press (October 17, 1981). "ABC Announces Crew". Daytona Beach Morning Journal. p. 7C.
- Bock, Hal (October 7, 1981). "Honest Reporting Creeps Back to TV". Beaver Country Times. Associated Press. p. B1.
- Fang, Ken (30 September). "ESPN Radio Announcing Commentators for MLB Wild Card and LDS". Fang's Bites. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
- Fang, Ken (4 October 2012). "ESPN Radio Assigns Its Crews For The MLB Postseason". Retrieved 5 October 2012.
- Fang, Ken (26 September 2011). "ESPN Radio Announcing Assignments For 2011 MLB Postseason". Fangsbites.com. Wordpress.
- Division Series Video
- Division Series numbers game