Thursday, February 14, 2019

Is Chicago Cubbie TV really going to be Marquee outfit? Or more TV clutter

We’re going to hear a whole lot of people screeching and screaming about the fact that the days of old, with Chicago Cubs baseball being on television every afternoon (after all, Wrigley Field ain’t got lights) are withering away. 
Broadcast booth; different stations, same programming. Photos by Gregory Tejeda
The Cubs’ management are following the lead of ballclubs like the New York Yankees, whose ballgames are the focal point of the YES Network.

ALL CUBS. ALL the time! A whole separate channel for people who want to indulge themselves with the Cubbie baseball brand.

It has been hinted for some time now that such an action would happen. But the Cubs made the announcement this week that they’re going to partner with the Sinclair Broadcast Group in putting together the cable TV channel that will exist solely for those people who think the Cubs are the extent to which baseball exists.

If you get the sense that I wouldn’t be eagerly waiting for the new channel to begin operations for the 2020 season, you’d be correct. Of course, I currently have a package of television stations – most of which I have to admit I never watch.

So the idea that I can ignore whatever new channel is put out there will be incredibly easy.

IF ANYTHING, I would wonder how many other people will also object and choose to ignore it – because it’s inevitable that any sports-related channel is going to consider itself prime programming for which an extra cost will have to be assessed.

Because the whole point is for the ballclub to take in additional revenue. If it were just the old mindset that viewed the broadcasts as advertising for the team, then there’d be no need to shift Cubs broadcasts from WGN-TV.

After all, the team has been there since the years just after the Second World War. Too many people are used to the notion of Cubs games being the very reason for WGN’s existence.
Field will look the same, regardless of which channel is carrying games
But I’m also aware that modern-day broadcasts are about finding stations willing to pay the teams big bucks. Or in the case of the Cubs, going into the broadcast business so they can add the TV profits to the bottom line of the ball club.

THAT ACTUALLY WAS the difference of the days when Tribune Co. was the ball club’s owner. Which was in the business of publishing and broadcasting – and if anything bought the ballclub back in the early 1980s so as to reduce the cost of broadcasting and covering the ballgames.

Which I’m sure is regarded as a very quaint, naïve approach to baseball in the 21st Century. Keeping down the cost of the fees paid to the teams WAS the point. Now, the teams are looking to get every penny possible.

So anybody who thinks there’s going to be a sympathetic audience for their rants about how the Cubs “belong!!!” on Channel 9, I’d have to say, “Get a clue!”

The teams think they have a right to expect you, the viewer, to pay up, big time! And if it’s really important to you to be able to see the Cubs play in this upcoming era where the team is likely to be on the decline and returning to their natural state of existence as a garbage ballclub that occasionally reaches levels of mediocrity, then pay the fee so you can keep watching the games.

PERSONALLY, I'D SAY there are other ball clubs worth watching – whose games might be easier to have access to.
Baseball DOES exist outside of Wrigley

And I’m not talking purely about the White Sox. Although I’m sure there is room within the environs of Guaranteed Rate Field for those people who have been deluded enough to spend their lives thus far wearing Cubbie-blue.

At least assuming they can lose some of their more ridiculous habits they’ve developed while sitting in the Wrigley Field combines.

Such as, the first Cubbie exile who throws a home run ball back onto the playing field is going to find themselves being flung onto the field by heckling fans.


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