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Thread: ESPN's baseball bias

  1. #1
    Vavasor TRF's Avatar
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    ESPN's baseball bias

    I along with other have noticed a definite bias towards certain teams. NY, Boston etc.

    Over the next month, beginning today I plan to log what the main story is on ESPN's baseball page to see if this bias really exists or if it is perceived. The criteria is simple; the main story must be directly about or mention one of the following teams: Yankees, Red Sox, Mets, Cubs, Giants and Cardinals.

    If a bias exists, we'll see the trend.

    June 2, 2006: Main Story Tigers avoid sweep by beating the Yankees.
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  3. #2
    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Not a bad idea will be interesting to see how it plays out.

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  4. #3
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Nice TRF. I've had the same notion myself.

    One tweak to consider -- instead of the Giants, how about just Bonds?

    I'd also be curious to know how many of the NYY-Red Sox games are televised on ESPN...
    "Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini

  5. #4
    Please come again pedro's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    There is a pretty strong BIAS but I do think a lot of has to do with the sheer market size that those two teams hold and b/c ESPN itself is based in the northeast.

    I really wish it wasn't so though b/c I get damn sick of those two teams after a while.
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  6. #5
    Member kbrake's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    I think ESPN would admit to giving far more coverage to those teams listed, but I'm sure its what the ad buyers want as those are the biggest markets.

  7. #6
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    I would expect to hear a lot about the Yankees, Red Sox, Mets and Cardinals (Tigers and White Sox too), because they're the better teams in the league right now.

    Making them the lead story on a regular basis isn't showing a bias, it's simply standard story prioritization. The best teams playing for the highest stakes lead the newscast.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

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  8. #7
    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Quote Originally Posted by lollipopcurve

    I'd also be curious to know how many of the NYY-Red Sox games are televised on ESPN...
    It feels like they all are.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

  9. #8
    Member VR's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Quote Originally Posted by M2
    I would expect to hear a lot about the Yankees, Red Sox, Mets and Cardinals (Tigers and White Sox too), because they're the better teams in the league right now.

    Making them the lead story on a regular basis isn't showing a bias, it's simply standard story prioritization. The best teams playing for the highest stakes lead the newscast.

    Not just the better teams, but the fan base..... thus the larger audience for ESPN. If the D-Rays were leading the AL East right now, they'd still be behind the Sox and Yanks for air time and features. The Cubbies are on all the time, along with their injury woes.
    Baseball is like church. Many attend, few understand

  10. #9
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    I would expect to hear a lot about the Yankees, Red Sox, Mets and Cardinals (Tigers and White Sox too), because they're the better teams in the league right now.
    What defines better? For weeks the Reds had a better record than either NYY or Boston, but while the ESPN baseball page featured the Yanks and Bosox regularly, the Reds got 1 maybe 2 splashes.

    Right now the Dbacks and Dodgers are within a game of the Yanks and vying for a division lead. Does that mean they deserve close to equal exposure?

    We all know what drives ESPN's baseball coverage -- it's not about showing the excellence and excitement of major league baseball; it's about creating huge markets around 5-6 marquee franchises, with a steady focus on NY-Boston. They have the right to cover the game however they wish, and for all I know MLB is complicit in the strategy. I just like that threads like this will help us track that strategy and make it plain to see.
    "Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini

  11. #10
    got alil captain in u?
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    espn never shows the mediocre teams it's always the yankee's sox mets cardinals etc

  12. #11
    Member 15fan's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Go easy on them. ESPN has a lot of programming time and bandwidth to fill up during the 7 months of the year that Duke isn't playing basketball.

    Oh how I long for the days when MTV just played videos and ESPN just showed games...

  13. #12
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Quote Originally Posted by captainmorgan07
    espn never shows the mediocre teams it's always the yankee's sox mets cardinals etc
    I want an ESPN Sunday night game of the week with the Royals vs. the Twins. That'll draw a large viewership.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

  14. #13
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Maybe someone with some media savvy can answer this one for me.

    If ESPN were to leave basic cable packages, would they be in trouble? Seems to me that with the local FOX telecasts, the team-owned networks, the NFL Network and the EI, Sunday Ticket and League Pass packages on Direct TV, viewers have plenty of venues for getting their sports fix and would have no problem choosing not to pay extra to watch ESPN. I'd ditch it in a second.
    "Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini

  15. #14
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Quote Originally Posted by lollipopcurve
    What defines better? For weeks the Reds had a better record than either NYY or Boston, but while the ESPN baseball page featured the Yanks and Bosox regularly, the Reds got 1 maybe 2 splashes.

    Right now the Dbacks and Dodgers are within a game of the Yanks and vying for a division lead. Does that mean they deserve close to equal exposure?
    I think they can be excused for not jumping on every April bandwagon. Yet they have seized upon the Tigers. And let's not be naive here, the Yankees and Red Sox are two of the best teams in baseball year-in, year-out.

    As for the DBacks and Dodgers, it would seem they're focusing on NL West as a five-team field trying to sort itself out. IMO, that's probably the smart way to cover it at this time. Thing is, those teams won't lead the East Coast broadcasts all that often because they're often just getting started with their games.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  16. #15
    Let's ride BRM's Avatar
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    Re: ESPN's baseball bias

    Quote Originally Posted by lollipopcurve
    Maybe someone with some media savvy can answer this one for me.

    If ESPN were to leave basic cable packages, would they be in trouble? Seems to me that with the local FOX telecasts, the team-owned networks, the NFL Network and the EI, Sunday Ticket and League Pass packages on Direct TV, viewers have plenty of venues for getting their sports fix and would have no problem choosing not to pay extra to watch ESPN. I'd ditch it in a second.
    Depending on the cost, I'd probably ditch it as well. At $3 or $4 a month I'd probably keep it. Anymore than that and I'd drop it.


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