Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

Category: Television (Page 2 of 5)

Meet the Dodgers’ newest broadcaster: Joe Davis

Joe Davis

By Jon Weisman

Any time the Dodgers add a new play-by-play announcer to their broadcast team, it’s going to draw attention — especially in the winter before what Vin Scully has said will be his final year behind the mic.

So let’s just make it clear: Joe Davis, who will be the play-by play announcer for 50 Dodger road games in 2016, working with Orel Hershiser, Nomar Garciaparra and Alanna Rizzo, is not taking Scully’s place.

“I think that like all Dodgers fans, I would hope that Vin would go as long as Vin would want to go,” Davis said in a phone interview. “From my perspective, I’m just looking at 2016. I know it sounds cliché to say that, but I’m just looking at my job to do those 50 games in 2016. Nobody replaces Vin Scully — nobody ever will replace Vin Scully. So all I really can worry about is doing my job the best I can, getting to work with an incredible crew and two guys that I think are two of the best analysts in all of baseball.”

In the televised games that Scully and Davis don’t work, Charley Steiner will do play-by-play. Steiner will also do play-by-play on radio in the remaining games, teamed with Rick Monday.

With that out of the way, who is Joe Davis?

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Vin Scully suits up for interview, 2016 return

By Jon Weisman

In his first interview since the end of the 2015 regular season, Vin Scully re-confirms that he is definitely returning to the Dodgers in 2016.

Scully spoke to SportsNet LA’s Alanna Rizzo today for a conversation that will air at 7 p.m. Thursday.

“Yes,” Scully told Rizzo in regards to the 2016 season. “Oh yeah, definitely. I’m looking forward to next year, maybe because it’s my last year. I’m looking forward to it as much as my second year, because I got by the first year and I was so thrilled there was another one coming up — well, that’s how I feel about ’16. I am chafing at the bit.”

Click here for a link to the clip

Scully underwent a medical procedure three weeks ago that sidelined him from postseason duty, but he was his vibrant self today, pulling up a chair (if you will) opposite Rizzo.

Meet frontier doctor Walter O’Malley

Walter_OMalley BrandedBy Jon Weisman

Fifty years ago today, in an episode that aired October 10, 1965, — yes, just hours after the Dodgers won Game 4 of the World Series — Dodger owner Walter O’Malley played a frontier doctor in the NBC TV western “Branded,” opposite series star Chuck Connors.

Connors was a former Brooklyn farmhand who had one at-bat with Brooklyn in 1949 and half a season with the Cubs in 1951, before embarking upon his acting career.

O’Malley was recruited to do the episode by Connors, after the Dodger chief asked him to entertain guests earlier that year, according to Times columnist Sid Ziff, who wrote about the filming of the episode in August 1965:

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Vin Scully ‘resting comfortably’ after medical procedure, will miss postseason

Los Angeles Dodgers vs Arizona Diamondbacks

By Jon Weisman

Vin Scully underwent a recommended medical procedure this morning and is resting comfortably, the Dodgers have announced.

On the advice of his doctors, Scully will miss the Dodgers’ postseason games to rest up. He said he’s looking forward to returning to the Dodgers for the 2016 season, his 67th with the Dodgers.

Everyone in the Dodger organization wishes Scully the speediest of recoveries. Can’t wait to see him back in action next year!

Vin Scully indicates 2016 will be final season

Vin Scully Press Conference

By Jon Weisman

Vin Scully apologized, unnecessarily of course, for being two minutes late to his press conference today to discuss his return to the Dodgers in 2016, citing an accident near De Soto Avenue on the Ventura Freeway.

Then came the words that made everyone who adores him slam on their brakes: that 2016 would likely be his last season.

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It’s official: Vin Scully to return to Dodgers in 2016

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

By Jon Weisman

With a reveal in the second inning of tonight’s Dodger game, Vin Scully has officially announced he will return to the Dodgers broadcast booth for his 67th season in 2016.

“I talked it over with my wife, Sandi, and my family and we’ve decided to do it again in 2016,” Scully said. “There’s no place like home and Dodger Stadium and we look forward to being a part of it with all of our friends.”

Said Dodger president and CEO Stan Kasten: “Vin is a national treasure, and the Dodgers couldn’t be happier to have him back at the microphone in 2016. Vin makes every broadcast special, and generation after generation of Dodger fans  have been blessed to be able to listen to him create his poetic magic since 1950. We look forward to adding many new chapters to that legacy in 2016.”

If you date the franchise back to its American Association roots in 1884, Brooklyn played 66 seasons before Scully’s arrival, and Brooklyn-Los Angeles has played 66 seasons since.

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In case you missed it: Walker Buehler to have surgery

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By Jon Weisman

Some pregame news and notes for you …

  • Walker Buehler, the Dodgers’ No. 1 choice in the 2015 draft, will have Tommy John surgery performed Wednesday by Dr. Neal ElAttrache.
  • Justin Turner will spend some time at Camelback Ranch while recovering from his leg infection, Don Mattingly told reporters today. Turner is still not expected to miss more than 15 days.
  • In their past 10 games in Philadelphia, the Dodgers have allowed 13 runs, according to the Dodgers’ public relations department.
  • Same source (with help from Stats, LLC): The Dodgers have an extra-base hit in 95 straight road games, tied for the second-longest streak all-time behind the 2005-07 St. Louis Cardinals (127 games).
  • Tonight’s starting pitcher, newly acquired Alex Wood, has a bit of a decline in strikeouts this year. Daniel Brim of Dodgers Digest did a deep dive and may have connected the dots with some shifts in Wood’s unorthodox delivery.
  • Pedro Moura of the Register has more on Wood, including this:

    Over the weekend, Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt watched Wood’s first bullpen session in awe.

    “Some of his changeups were almost like splits that went almost straight down,” Honeycutt said. “I said to him, ‘Geez, that’s filthy.’”

    “He goes, ‘Yeah.’”

  • New Dodger reliever Jim Johnson, now on his fifth team in the past two seasons, spoke to Arash Markazi of about the travails of changing teams.
  • Despite the presence of Adrian Beltre and, of late, Justin Turner, no MLB team has gone longer without an All-Star third baseman than the Dodgers, writes Miles Wray of the Hardball Times. Pedro Guerrero was the last, in 1983.
  • Newly acquired injured pitcher Bronson Arroyo could play an indirect role in the Dodger postseason, even if he never throws a pitch, as Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. explains.
  • Major League Baseball Advanced Media has make a major deal to run the NHL’s TV and online video operations, as Todd Spangler of Variety notes. How BAM, as it’s known, became such a behemoth is explored by Ben Popper at the Verge.
  • Adrian Gonzalez’s three-homer, 13-base game against the Padres in April is the top offensive performance by a player this year, according to Cliff Corcoran of
  • Kiké Hernandez and Yasiel Puig took up this year’s Ice Bucket Challenge on behalf of the Dodgers this year. Don’t worry — they did it over the Dodger Stadium grass, so the water was put to use.
  • Funny stuff from Jason Bateman on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” the other night (via Blue Heaven) — watch below.

SportsNet LA joins Charter lineup Tuesday

TWCSLA_Logo_loRESBy Jon Weisman

SportsNet LA, the 24/7 Dodger channel, will be made available to Charter Communications customers beginning Tuesday.

SportsNet LA will air on Charter Spectrum TV Select, Charter’s most widely subscribed tier of service, via channels 44 SD/789 HD in Los Angeles, 68 SD/773 HD in San Luis Obispo and channel 95 SD in Porterville.

SportsNet LA’s Spanish-language game telecasts and Korean-language Secondary Audio Programming (SAP) will also be made available to Charter customers.

“We’re thrilled that Dodger fans will now be able to watch SportsNet LA’s 24/7 Dodger programming on Charter’s systems,” Dodger president and CEO Stan Kasten said. “SportsNet LA continues to deliver unparalleled coverage of the Dodgers, and we hope other providers come on board soon so all fans can enjoy the network’s first-rate programming.”

Said Charter Communications president and CEO Tom Rutledge: “The Dodgers are an iconic franchise and part of the fabric of the community. We are very excited to be bringing the Dodgers back to Charter customers in the L.A. area.”

In addition to live games and pregame/postgame shows, SportsNet LA’s comprehensive coverage of the Dodgers includes documentary series such as “Backstage Dodgers,” “Dodgers Clubhouse,” “Dodgermentary” and “Connected With …,” as well as full games from the past in “Timeless Dodgers.”

Video: Vin Scully guests on Letterman, 1990

I wonder if David Letterman thought he’d retire before Vin Scully when they met up for this 1990 interview.

Pace of play is part of the conversation, and — go figure — so is the Grateful Dead.

(Thanks to Tom Hoffarth of the Daily News for the link.)

— Jon Weisman

In case you missed it: Two days until pitchers and catchers
By Jon Weisman

Pitchers and catchers, we’ll be saying hello to you at Camelback Ranch inside of 48 hours. Hope you packed as well as we did.

In the meantime …

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Team Jarrin takes over Spanish radio broadcasts


AwardBy Jon Weisman

For the first time, Hall of Fame broadcaster Jaime Jarrin and his son Jorge will form the broadcast team for the Dodgers’ Spanish radio broadcasts on KTNQ 1020 AM.

Pepe Yniguez and Fernando Valenzuela will be the Spanish broadcast team for SportsNet LA on television, with Manny Mota contributing on both radio and TV.

On the English-language side, the broadcast teams pick up where they left off, starting with Vin Scully on SportsNet LA for Dodger home games and select road games. Scully will simulcast the first three innings on KLAC 570 AM, with Charley Steiner and Rick Monday taking over on radio in the fourth inning.

For the other games, Steiner, Orel Hershiser and Nomar Garciaparra will work TV, with Monday joined by Kevin Kennedy on radio.

This is season No. 66 for Scully with the Dodgers and No. 57 for Jaime Jarrin. Monday is working his 23rd season behind the Dodger mic; Yniguez his 17th, Valenzuela his 13th and Steiner his 11th. Mota is in his sixth season as a Dodger broadcaster and 47th overall with the franchise.


Bradley University names school of sports communication in honor of Charley Steiner

SteinerBy Jon Weisman

This is a big honor, to say the least. The school of communications at Bradley University is being named after Dodger broadcaster Charley Steiner.

The Charley Steiner School of Sports Communication becomes the first named sports communication school in the nation. It was announced during Bradley’s 15th annual Hollywood Gala Reception at the Skirball Center tonight.

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The musical stylings of Clayton Kershaw

Clayton Kershaw joined NASCAR champ Jimmie Johnson in presenting at Monday’s American Country Countdown Awards … and thanks to Stu Hothem of, we can document that it was music to … someone’s ears.

— Jon Weisman

Kershaw Week on SportsNet LA

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Screen Shot 2014-11-09 at 7.47.42 PMBeginning today and continuing through Sunday, SportsNet LA is dedicating much of its programming schedule to a celebration of National League Cy Young and Most Valuable Player Award candidate Clayton Kershaw. Highlights include:

  • 8 p.m. Monday: “Backstage: Dodgers, The Best of Clayton Kershaw 2014”
  • 9 p.m. Tuesday: “Timeless Dodgers,” Giants at Dodgers, September 20, 2011: Kershaw’s 20th win en route to the 2011 NL Cy Young Award
  • 4 p.m. Wednesday: “Access SportsNet: Dodgers” Cy Young Award Announcement Special
  • 4 p.m. Thursday: “Access SportsNet: Dodgers” MVP Award Announcement Special
  • 7 p.m. Friday: “Dodgers Squeeze Play” 21-hour marathon – condensed versions of all 21 of Kershaw’s wins in 2014 air back-to-back
  • 5 p.m. Saturday: “Timeless Dodgers,” Rockies at Dodgers, June 18 (Kershaw’s no-hitter)

— Jon Weisman

Andre Ethier’s acting gig on ‘Lab Rats’ comes with a Don Newcombe connection

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Tony Rivetti/Disney XD

Tony Rivetti/DisneyXD

By Jon Weisman

Andre Ethier, Alien Hunter. Don Newcombe, proud stepfather.

Back in April, we told you that Ethier would be a guest star on the DisneyXD series “Lab Rats.” That episode airs Monday at 6:15 p.m., and Dodger legend Don Newcombe, whose stepson Chris Peterson is the co-creator and executive producer of the show, was on set the day it was filmed.

“Don is an amazing man and he has taught me so much,” Peterson said. “Every time he comes on set, he beams with pride. To think about all the amazing things he has done in his own career, to think of what this legend means to the institution of Major League Baseball — and here he is on the ‘Lab Rats’ set, prouder than ever.

“We’re extremely close, and because of that he feels close to the show. He has known the cast from day one, and he loves interacting with all of them. At home, he never misses an episode of “Lab Rats,” and I often get a call right after we air to hear how much he enjoyed it.

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