Major League Baseball on FS1
MLBonFS1logo.jpg
Also known asMLB on FS1
MLB on Fox Sports 1
GenreBaseball telecasts
StarringSee Major League Baseball on Fox broadcasters
Theme music composerNJJ Music (2020–present)
Jochen Flach (2014–2019)
Scott Schreer (2014–2019)
Opening theme"MLB on Fox theme music" (2020–present)
"NFL on Fox theme music" (2014–2019)
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons9
Production
Production locationsVarious MLB stadiums (game telecasts)
Fox Network Center, Los Angeles, California (studio segments, pregame, and postgame shows)
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running time3 hours (or until game ends)
Production companyFox Sports
DistributorFox Corporation
Release
Original networkFox Sports 1
Original releaseApril 5, 2014 (2014-04-05)[1]
Chronology
Related showsMajor League Baseball on Fox

Major League Baseball on FS1 is the de facto name for the presentation of Major League Baseball (MLB) games produced by Fox Sports for Fox Sports 1 (FS1). 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).[2]

Business history

See also: Sports_broadcasting_contracts_in_the_United_States § Major_League_Baseball, and Major League Baseball on television

On September 19, 2012, Sports Business Daily[3][4] reported that Major League Baseball would agree to separate eight-year television deals with Fox Sports and Turner Sports[5] through the 2021 season. Fox would reportedly pay around $4 billion over eight years (close to $500 million per year), while Turner would pay around $2.8 billion over eight years (more than $300 million per year). Under the new deals, Fox and TBS' coverage would essentially be the same as in the 2007–2013 contract with the exception of Fox and TBS splitting coverage of the Division Series, which TBS has broadcast exclusively dating back to 2007. More importantly, Fox would carry some of the games (such as the Saturday afternoon Game of the Week) on its new general sports channel, Fox Sports 1,[3][6][7] which launched on August 17, 2013.[8][9] Sources also said it was possible that Fox would sell some League Division Series games to MLB Network.

On October 2, 2012, the new deal between Major League Baseball and Fox was officially confirmed;[10][11] it included the television rights to 12 Saturday afternoon games on Fox (reduced from 26),[12] 40 games on Fox Sports 1, rights to the All-Star Game, two League Division Series (two games were sold to MLB Network, the rest would air on Fox Sports 1), one League Championship Series (in which Fox Sports and Turner Sports would each respectively alternate coverage of American League and National League postseason games each year on an odd-even basis, with Games 1 and, if necessary, 6 in 2014 airing on Fox), and the World Series (which would remain on Fox). In addition, all Fox Saturday Baseball games would be made available on MLB Extra Innings and MLB.TV (subject to local blackout restrictions[13]), Fox Sports was awarded TV Everywhere rights for streaming of game telecasts on computers, mobile and tablet devices, rights to a nightly baseball highlights show, Spanish language rights to all games carried on Fox and Fox Cable (Fox Deportes) and rights to a weekly show produced by MLB Productions.

On November 15, 2018, Fox renewed its rights through 2028, maintaining its existing structure but with expanded digital rights, and a promise to begin airing more games on the Fox broadcast network (beginning with at least two of the first four League Championship Series games and all seventh games from 2020 to 2028, with additional games in 2022).[14][15][16]

It had been criticized for airing only Game 1 of the 2019 American League Championship Series, while placing the rest on Fox Sports 1.[17]

Scheduling history

Beginning with the 2014 television contract, FS1's regular-season telecasts are not exclusive, with the teams' local broadcasters also showing the games and FS1 broadcasts of those games blacked-out in the teams' local markets.

As of 2022, most FS1 games air Saturday afternoons, with additional, irregularly scheduled weeknight games.[18] Weeknight games that have aired on FS1 include:

Monday nights

Main article: Monday Night Baseball

Year Date Matchup
2016 May 23, 2016, 8:00PM Angels Rangers
September 19, 2016, 10:00PM Diamondbacks Padres
2020 August 3, 2020, 7:00PM Mets Braves
August 10, 2020, 6:00PM Braves Phillies
August 17, 2020, 9:00PM Padres Rangers
August 24, 2020, 7:00PM Cubs Tigers
September 7, 2020, 9:00PM Rockies Padres
September 14, 2020, 8:00PM Athletics Mariners
2021 April 12, 2021, 7:30PM Cubs Brewers
2022 April 11, 2022, 6:30PM Mets Phillies
June 20, 2022, 8:00PM Cardinals Brewers
July 11, 2022, 7:00PM Mets Braves
August 15, 2022, 8:00PM Astros White Sox

Tuesday nights

Main article: Tuesday Night Baseball

Year Date Matchup
2014 April 8, 2014, 8PM Reds Cardinals
July 29, 2014, 8PM Yankees Rangers
August 26, 2014, 8PM Twins Royals
2015 June 23, 2015, 7PM Cardinals Marlins
July 28, 2015, 8PM Yankees Rangers
2016 April 26, 2016, 9:30PM Cardinals Diamondbacks
August 6, 2016, 7:00PM Cardinals Reds
2017 May 9, 2017, 7:00PM Yankees Reds
August 1, 2017, 10:00PM Twins Padres
August 8, 2017, 8:00PM Cardinals Royals
August 15, 2017, 8:00PM Tigers Rangers
2018 April 17, 2018, 7:00PM Indians Twins
May 15, 2018, 8:00PM Cardinals Twins
June 5, 2018, 8:00PM Marlins Cardinals
June 26, 2018, 7:00PM Diamondbacks Marlins
July 10, 2018, 8:00PM Royals Twins
September 4, 2018, 8:00PM Angels Rangers
2019 August 27, 2019, 10:00PM Rangers Angels
2020 July 28, 2020, 9:00PM Dodgers Astros
August 11, 2020, 7:00PM White Sox Tigers
August 18, 2020, 8:00PM Cardinals Cubs
August 25, 2020, 6:30PM Orioles Rays
August 25, 2020, 9:30PM Dodgers Giants
September 1, 2020, 6:30PM Blue Jays Marlins
September 8, 2020, 7:30PM Red Sox Phillies
September 15, 2020, 8:30PM Athletics Rockies
September 22, 2020, 9:00PM Rangers Diamondbacks
2021 May 25, 2021, 8:00PM Dodgers Astros
June 1, 2021, 6:00PM White Sox Indians
June 8, 2021, 7:00PM Nationals Rays
August 31, 2021, 9:30PM Brewers Giants
September 7, 2021, 6:30PM Mets Marlins
September 14, 2021, 7:30PM Indians Twins
September 21, 2021, 10:00PM Giants Padres
September 28, 2021, 7:00PM Phillies Braves

Wednesday nights

Main article: Wednesday Night Baseball

Year Date Matchup
2017 April 5, 2017, 7PM Yankees Rays
April 5, 2017, 7PM Royals Tigers
2018 April 4, 2018, 7:30PM Cardinals Brewers
2020 August 5, 2020, 4:00PM Phillies Yankees
August 12, 2020, 6:30PM Royals Reds
September 9, 2020, 6:30PM White Sox Pirates
2021 April 28, 2021, 7:00PM Cubs Braves
2022 May 11, 2022, 7:00PM Rays Angels
June 8, 2022, 7:30PM Yankees Twins
June 15, 2022, 7:00PM Brewers Mets
August 10, 2022, 8:00PM White Sox Royals
August 17, 2022, 8:00PM Dodgers Brewers
August 24, 2022, 7:00PM White Sox Orioles
September 7, 2022, 8:30PM Diamondbacks Padres
September 14, 2022, 8:00PM Athletics Rangers

Thursday nights

Main article: Thursday Night Baseball

Year Date Matchup
2014 May 15, 2014 Padres Reds
2015 June 18, 2015 Brewers Royals
2016 April 7, 2016 Rangers Angels
April 21, 2016 Tigers Royals
2017 May 18, 2017 Yankees Royals
2018 May 10, 2018 Twins Angels
June 14, 2018 Rays Yankees
2020 July 30, 2020 Padres Giants
August 20, 2020 Brewers Twins
September 24, 2020 Tigers Royals
2022 June 30, 2022 Padres Dodgers
July 28, 2022 Mariners Astros
August 4, 2022 Rays Tigers

Saturday afternoons

See also: Major League Baseball Game of the Week

As of the 2022 season, FS1 carries a Saturday afternoon game most weeks. These games, like the weeknight games, are non-exclusive. FS1's coverage begins with the pregame show a half-hour before the game, which usually starts at 1 or 4 p.m. Eastern Time. If there is a second game on FS1, which occurs in the early season before the Fox broadcast network's exclusive Saturday evening coverage begins, a studio show is aired in between.

Postseason coverage

See also: List of American League Division Series broadcasters, List of National League Division Series broadcasters, and List of American League Championship Series broadcasters

With FS1 taking over most MLB coverage in 2014, postseason coverage on Fox Sports' end of the package began to be split between the Fox broadcast network and FS1. The deal, which brought back Division Series baseball to Fox for the first time since 2006, put Fox's Division Series games exclusively on FS1. As part of their contract renewal before the 2019 season, Fox has agreed to air any League Championship Series Game 7 on the broadcast network. Fox airs the World Series in its entirety, as has been the case every year since 2000.

For the 2020 NLCS however, while Fox aired Games 1, 4 and 7, FS1 aired every game except Game 1 as it simulcast Games 4 and 7. (Game 4 was scheduled to air only on FS1 but the postponement of a previously scheduled Thursday Night Football game that was supposed to air on Fox allowed both Fox and FS1 to air the game.)[19]

For the 2021 ALCS, Fox aired Games 1 and 2 while FS1 aired Games 2-6 (Game 2 was simulcast on both channels). From 2022 on, Fox will air more postseason games as part of the renewal made in 2018.

Digital on-screen graphics

See also: Fox_Sports_(United_States) § Graphics,_scoring_bugs,_and_theme_music; and Major_League_Baseball_on_Fox § Digital_on-screen_graphics

In 2020,[20] Fox unveiled a new graphics package for its NFL and college football coverage starting with Super Bowl LIV. Baseball broadcasts continued using this package through the end of the 2021 regular season, as the new on-screen look is for football only. Beginning with the 2021 season,[21] Fox and FS1 started using stylized cartoon illustrations on players rather than traditional photos, similar to those used on the network's NFL coverage since the previous year's Super Bowl.

Theme music

See also: Major_League_Baseball_on_Fox § Theme_music; and Fox_Sports_(United_States) § Graphics,_scoring_bugs,_and_theme_music

NJJ Music composed[22][23][24] the original MLB on Fox theme music[25][26][27] in 1996. This theme music was used exclusively from June 1996 until early May 2007. In mid-May 2007, an updated version[28] was unveiled, featuring a more jazzy feel and implementing a full orchestra instead of the synth elements used by the 1996 theme.

Beginning with the 2010 postseason,[29] both the 2007 theme and the Flach theme were replaced by the longtime NFL on Fox theme music, which began to be used for all Fox sporting events.

In 2014, the 2007–2010 jazz theme was brought back for regular season games on MLB on FS1. The NFL theme was retained for MLB on Fox, including Fox Saturday Baseball, Baseball Night in America, the All-Star Game and all coverage of the postseason. However, occasionally one of the two themes was heard on telecasts that were designated for the other, implying that the designations are slightly fluid.

In 2020, MLB on Fox reintroduced the original 1996–2007 theme; Fox Sports regional affiliates continued to use the 2007–2010 theme until the network was rebranded to Bally Sports in 2021. As of the 2021 season, the original theme is now used for coverage of all games across both Fox and FS1.

Ratings

Postseason

Saturday afternoons

Year Rating
2014 0.28
2015 0.34
2016 0.29
2017 0.29
2018 0.27
2019 0.22

Commentators and studio personalities

Main articles: List of Major League Baseball on Fox broadcasters, List_of_current_Major_League_Baseball_broadcasters § Television_broadcasters, and List of Fox Sports announcers

Game 1 of the 2014 National League Championship Series was simulcast on Fox Sports 1 and hosted by Kevin Burkhardt, Gabe Kapler and C. J. Nitkowski, who offered sabermetric analysis of the game.[30][31]

Joe Davis called play-by-play for Game 4 of the 2019 American League Championship Series due to Joe Buck calling Thursday Night Football for Fox.[32]

Other MLB related programming

As part of Fox Sports' new Major League Baseball broadcast deal, in April 2014, Fox Sports 1 premiered MLB Whiparound, an hour-long nightly baseball highlight program (similar in vein to ESPN's Baseball Tonight and MLB Network's MLB Tonight) featuring quick-turnaround highlights, and news and analysis from around the league (live look-ins of games being played in progress generally can not be shown on Whiparound, as MLB Tonight is reserved that right exclusively). It is hosted by Chris Myers, who is joined by one or two analysts rotating between Frank Thomas, Eric Karros, Dontrelle Willis and C. J. Nitkowski. Although Whiparound airs most weeknights at 10 p.m., the Wednesday editions are usually delayed to 12 a.m. Eastern Time on weeks when Fox Sports 1 airs a sporting event in prime time during the MLB season (on weeks without predetermined programming conflicts, the program airs in its regular 10 p.m. slot).[33]

Also in 2014, Fox Sports 1 began airing MLB 162 (the title being a reference to the total number of games each team plays during the Major League Baseball season), which was hosted by Julie Alexandria. In 2015, Fox Sports 1 began airing MLB's Best, a half-hour weekly show completely containing highlights of the best plays of the previous week in a countdown format, with no host or interviews.

See also

References

  1. ^ Berenz, Ryan (March 28, 2014). "MLB on FOX and FOX Sports 1 2014 schedule". Channel Guide Magazine.
  2. ^ "MLB on Fox: New voices, channel, platforms". Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  3. ^ a b "SBD: FOX, Turner, Will Keep Current MLB TV Packages; Fox Sports 1 Will Get Games". Sports Media Watch. September 19, 2012. Retrieved September 20, 2012.
  4. ^ John Ourand; Eric Fisher (September 19, 2012). "Fox, Turner To Renew MLB Packages; MLB Net Could Get LDS Games". SportsBusinessDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2012.
  5. ^ Joe Lucia (September 20, 2012). "Turner and Fox to Retain MLB Rights". AwfulAnnouncing.com. Retrieved September 20, 2012.
  6. ^ Ken Fang (September 24, 2012). "A Look at The New MLB TV Deals". Fang's Bites. Archived from the original on September 26, 2012. Retrieved September 28, 2012.
  7. ^ Steve Lepore (March 6, 2013). "Fox Sports 1 must succeed on its own terms before challenging ESPN". SBNation.com.
  8. ^ "Fox Sports announces Fox Sports 1". Fox Sports. Retrieved March 5, 2013.
  9. ^ Ken Fang (March 6, 2013). "What You'll See on Fox Sports 1". Fang's Bites. Archived from the original on March 9, 2013.
  10. ^ Ken Fang (October 2, 2012). "Wrapping Up All of the New MLB TV Deals Into One". Fang's Bites. Archived from the original on October 4, 2012. Retrieved October 5, 2012.
  11. ^ Ken Fang (October 2, 2012). "Fox Sports Announces Eight-Year Rights Deal with MLB". Fang's Bites. Archived from the original on July 22, 2013. Retrieved October 5, 2012.
  12. ^ "FOX Cuts Back on Regular Season Baseball; Blackouts For Regional Games to Be Lifted". Sports Media Watch. October 2, 2012. Retrieved October 5, 2012.
  13. ^ Joe Lucia (October 2, 2012). "Fox MLB Blackouts Gone Starting in 2014". AwfulAnnouncing.com. Retrieved October 5, 2012.
  14. ^ "MLB Set To Announce Renewal With Fox, New Deal With DAZN". Sports Business Daily. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  15. ^ "Fox Sports and Major League Baseball Extend Rights Deal Through 2028". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  16. ^ "Baseball owners extend Manfred's contract, TV deal with Fox". Associated Press. 16 November 2018.
  17. ^ "Baseball owners extend Manfred's contract, TV deal with Fox". Associated Press. November 16, 2018.
  18. ^ "MLB TV schedule 2022: When and where to watch". Sports Media Watch. Retrieved March 18, 2022.
  19. ^ "Two Week 5 games pushed back after positive COVID-19 tests".
  20. ^ Ourand, John (October 12, 2020). "Shanks on where Fox/MLB started and where it's going next". Sports Busineess Journal.
  21. ^ Southard, Dargen (August 11, 2021). "'A magical night of television': Inside FOX Sports' preparation for Field of Dreams game broadcast". Des Moines Register.
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  23. ^ Vlam, Victor (September 18, 2012). "That iconic WNBC news theme? Turns out it is composed by NJJ Music". Network News Music.
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  26. ^ MLB On FOX Theme 1996-2007 on YouTube
  27. ^ Foster, Jason (September 20, 2015). "The 9 best network baseball theme songs of all time, ranked". The Sporting News.
  28. ^ FOX MLB Theme (2007-2010) on YouTube
  29. ^ Papaserge, Ryan (October 14, 2010). "The 10 Best TV Sports Themes of the Past 20 Years". Bleacher Report.
  30. ^ "The Power of JABO". foxsports.com. Retrieved October 10, 2014.
  31. ^ Lucia, Joe (13 October 2014). "Fox Sports 1′s JABO telecast represents a major step forward for analysis". Awful Announcing.
  32. ^ Barron, David (October 12, 2019). "Joe Buck pulls double duty on ALCS, NFL". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  33. ^ "Reynolds & Verducci join Buck for MLB on FOX". Fox Sports. March 3, 2014.