I knew I wouldn't resist for long. I watched the World Baseball Classic game between Korea & Japan this morning. It was a pretty good game between two big rivals. The crowd looked excited and loud. Yes, I said the crowd looked loud.
For some reason, ESPN didn't see fit to send their commentary team to Japan to cover the games there. Or at least, that's how it seemed. I'm pretty sure they were broadcasting the game from a studio. It must have been too expensive to send a couple of guys to Japan for 10 days. So, we got to hear every breath their two announcers took with a very muted background crowd noise. I half suspect it was one of those old records of crowd noise used when radio was a brand new phenomenon.
Clearly, ESPN doesn't believe in the World Baseball Classic. If they did, they wouldn't be giving it this minor sport, minor station treatment. Japan vs Korea is one of the games that should have been hyped by the network. Two pretty good teams, playing a good game in front of 40,000 excited people.
Korea won with a late homer, no doubt causing trouble for Japanese baseball legend Sadaharu Oh, who said before the tournament that Japan would all its games in the first round. Regardless, both teams have advanced.