Monday, February 5, 2007

Advice from Ken Korach

The following is an email from A's announcer Ken Korach:

Scribe....good to hear from you and I really think you are on the right track. I especially liked the improvement you have made from the first couple of broadcasts to the recent ones.

The only thing I would stress as far as a critique would be to focus more on the game. Obviously, you don't have the advantage of crowd noise. And, I think you have done a great job of doing your homework and getting interesting information from the players. Really good hustle on your part.

Very impressive and this would mean a lot to me if I was hiring someone. And, in the league like the one you are covering, the games are of little importance compared to the individual struggles of the players to make it.

Still, in doing the play by play, I would like to see you focus more on the fundamentals. At times, you seem to want to get your stuff on the air, and the game is secondary. I like to think of a broadcast as being built from the field up to my stuff...not from my stuff down to the field. In other words....right handed hitter or left...where is the outfield the third baseman in on the grass...the count the the pitcher on the first base side of the rubber.

Ernie Harwell said it is call the game, but that would be boring if just called the game for three hours, so you mix in a little color.

Several times you get caught with "And there's a fly ball to left field." I hate when I do this...and it is going to can't avoid it all the time...but, I hate to get caught off guard. I like to have the pitcher into the windup and delivering the ball to set up the play.

The pacing is so important. You really improved in this area. It seemed forced in the first game I heard. The best broadcasters...and maybe this is why so many of the greats came from the South (Harwell, Barber, Allen)...have great tempo. Nothing is is relaxed and easy. Intensity may work in football and basketball, but not in baseball.

And, the good ones have the ability to bring the action into focus when the game is on the line. Increase the tempo...capture the drama with their voices. King was great at this.

One little use "zero" when giving the score. You don't hear anybody using zero. It may not be proper English, but it is 2 to nothing instead of 2 to zero.

Anyway, it sounds like you are having fun...and, what great experience.


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