• Yanks & WCBS-AM To Part Ways After Season?

    Posted by on November 13th, 2010 · Comments (12)

    Via Bob Raissman

    Is the curtain falling on Ma and Pa Pinstripe? Will next season be John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman’s last in the Yankees radio booth?

    Right now their future is up in the air. The Yankees contract with WCBS-AM, worth about $12 million per year, expires at the end of the 2011 season, so do Sterling and Waldman’s pacts. Sterling has been the radio voice of the Yankees since 1989. Waldman joined him in 2005.

    There has yet to be any serious negotiations between the Yankees and WCBS. The job status of Ma and Pa cannot be resolved until a new radio-rights deal is cut. Industry moles say other outlets have chatted informally with Bombers brass. These potential suitors are looking to get a sense of which direction the club wants to go with its radio rights.

    Outside of WCBS, which probably wants to keep the Yankees, it’s highly likely ESPN will – if it hasn’t already – stick its beak into the mix. For ESPN-1050, the process of trying to chip away at WFAN, longtime Mets rights holder, has not been easy.

    Adding Yankees radiocasts to the mix of Jets, Knicks and Rangers would help change the equation – drastically. But how much would ESPN be willing to pay for the radio rights to Yankees baseball? And would pinstripe honchos be satisfied having their games go out over ESPN-1050’s weak signal? That situation could be corrected if ESPN ever purchases another station with stronger reach.

    There also has been talk about the Yankees buying a radio station.

    I really don’t see the Yankees getting rid of Sterling and Waldman. Heck, they’re still doing the YMCA when they drag the infield, right? The Yankees hardly get rid of something when it’s time for it to go. Whatever they do, in terms of picking a station and choosing broadcasters, I just hope they do the right thing. There are many, many, people out there in Yankeeland who use the radio broadcasts as their main way to follow the team. And, it would be a crime against that part of their fan base if the Yankees screw this up…somehow.

    Comments on Yanks & WCBS-AM To Part Ways After Season?

    1. November 13th, 2010 | 11:41 pm

      Maybe the Yankees can get Jon Miller and Joe Morgan

    2. K-V-C
      November 13th, 2010 | 11:45 pm

      Since Sterling can’t even see the damn field anymore, its past time he and his idiotic home run calls ride off into the sunset.

    3. poneil74
      November 13th, 2010 | 11:56 pm

      I created an account just so I could comment on this article. I cannot believe we finally have a chance to get rid of Suzyn Waldman. This is the best thing to happen to Yankees baseball since that time a chick flashed her tits at a game. I would give anything to have her gone by the end of this season. I only wish we could just get rid of her before this season. When I watch a baseball game, I want to listen to someone who knows what baseball is. Not a chick who tells me the Yankees need to score more runs than the other team to win. So in summary, here are five things I would do to get rid of Susan Waldman.

      5) Go to a Mets game and keep my eyes open for the whole time.
      4) Admit that the Yankees buy championships
      3) Let Pedro be my daddy
      2) Have Joe Morgan take over as broadcaster.
      1) Admit that Schilling may have had a bloody suck and that it wasn’t probably just iodine.

    4. Evan3457
      November 14th, 2010 | 12:07 am

      I only wish they let Sterling and Waldman go…well, Waldman can stay on if she goes back to her old job of post-game interviews, I guess. It’s the only thing she does well.

      Sterling…could be the worst radio play-by-play man…evah.

    5. November 14th, 2010 | 2:04 am

      With George out of the picture we may actually see the end of Sterling. He’s not a play by play man in any sense of the word. His call of the game is in actually a rambling conversation about baseball and life, and what his opinion is of the on the field events of the day. He has only a haphazard commitment to things like the count on a batter, and the game score. Suzyn seems to function more as a talking scoreboard than a game analyst, constantly updating the listener with out of town scores. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t have a need for an inning by inning account of a KC vs. Oakland matchup in early July.

      George seemed to have developed some type of relationship with Suzyn and John, but those days are now done. I wouldn’t mind Suzyn staying in some capacity but Sterling has to go. John could continue doing wraparound segments on Yankee Classics, and voice work on the Yankeeography’s but please no more radio work. Marconi never meant the medium to be used in this manner.

    6. redbug
      November 14th, 2010 | 9:31 am

      I like Sterling and Waldman. Waldman is a pleasure to listen to because she understands the game and gives us as much insight into the players as they’ll allow. Sterling is just plain fun to listen to. So what he gets some calls wrong? That’s just part of why it’s fun to listen.

      Sterling and Waldman are so much better than Michael Kaye. Kaye is full of himself. We hear him repeat the same stuff about himself and his views constantly. Give me Sterling and Waldman. They’re like watching the game w/ 2 friends.

    7. 77yankees
      November 14th, 2010 | 1:46 pm

      I don’t think fans become attached to their local announcers the way they used to. Growing up as a Yankee fan in the 70s & 80s we had the Scooter, Frank Messer and Bill White, and since then I’ve never felt the connection with our announcers (on TV or radio) since then.

      On the whole, it’s a vanishing breed throughout baseball. Outside of Vin Scully in LA or Bob Uecker in Milwaukee, what announcers have that synonymous connect with their fan base? Sadly in just the last few years we’ve seen Harry Kalas, Ernie Harwell, and now Dave Niehaus pass on, and when you listen to the tributes, you realize the reverence they were held in by their audience.

      That’s definitely not the case with any of our current Yankee announcers, and if you read the comments above, it may be the complete opposite as it applies to our current radio team.

    8. November 14th, 2010 | 2:30 pm

      @ 77yankees:
      The big change is the number of team broadcasters. The three you mentioned rotated throughout the game between TV and radio. A 162 games a year, same guys, every game. Now, YES has a crew of 7 and CBS radio has Waldman and Sterling. YES should work with no more than four on regular schedules, anyone unwilling to work that kind of schedule should go. Sterling has to go. He is so self involved he has become a joke. To understand how bad a job he does, watch the game on TV, turn the sound down and listen to his radio call.

    9. 77yankees
      November 14th, 2010 | 3:26 pm

      @ Joseph Maloney:

      Absolutely, YES is a joke with that. It’s almost like the baseball telecast in The Naked Gun with all the announcers. And other than Singleton none of the others does a thing for me.

      I had an evening job about five years ago that rendered me listening to the radio casts of most of the games and it was totally cringe worthy with the same recycled ad libs over and over from Sterling.

      Not that Kay is any better on YES with his “little girl with a curl” and “flotsam and jetsam” references, for instance.

    10. redbug
      November 14th, 2010 | 4:42 pm

      @ 77yankees:

      I was shocked the other night when I watched Hot Stove and Bob Lorenz mentioned Dave Niehaus passing. He compared him to other greats such as Harry Kalas and Ernie Harwell – without mentioning the Scooter! What the heck was that about?!

    11. 77yankees
      November 14th, 2010 | 9:18 pm

      @ redbug:

      I didn’t see it, but I surmise the context in which Lorenz was referring to was as a career announcer mode. Those three, and you can also throw in Vin Scully, Mel Allen, et al, were lifers in the broadcast industry, where as the Scooter, as a former player turned announcer, wasn’t a pure natural in the business.

      I don’t think he was slighting the Scooter – he had his charm and appeal with Yankee fans – it was just in a different manner than the other gentlemen mentioned had with their respective audiences.

    12. November 14th, 2010 | 9:20 pm

      @ redbug:

      I think he only mentioned the others because they are the most recent ones to depart us.

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