TV: Oakland A’s

Flagship: Comcast SportsNet California

PxP: Glen Kuiper

Color: Ray Fosse

Reviewer: Scott Brimer

Category: Play-by-Play
Grade: 50

The broadcast team of Glen Kuiper and Ray Fosse is adequate and performs reasonably well. Glen’s older brother, Duane, also broadcasts for the San Francisco Giants. Kuiper has been the primary announcer since 2007 and Fosse has been handling color commentary duties since 1986. The team works well together and have a pleasant, steady delivery that might be called laid back. There was minimum jargon and they complemented each other adequately. Play by play was solid but there did seem to be long periods of silence during the game.

Category: Color Commentary
Grade: 45

It seemed that the color commentary was sparse, but when implemented it was generally good. Given Fosse’s background he was able to give good insight on pitch selection and gave good recaps of pitching performances. He also added some interesting insights on base running. The broadcast used the standard visual aids that are on MLB broadcasts.

Category: Broadcast Team Commentary
Grade: 50

Given that Kuiper and Fosse have worked together for so long, they are seamless in transitions and tended to complement each other. While not losing focus on the game they managed to have a good discussion on the pennant race and trade possibilities for the upcoming trade deadline. They also had an evenhanded discussion when John Jaso was picked off first base and its possible implications. Even though they are A’s announcers, they did a fair job of maintaining objectivity while still supporting the home team. At some points I felt they were a bit too even handed, and I don’t mind a bit of home team bias.  

Category: Charisma and Chemistry
Grade: 55

Kuiper and Fosse have worked together for a while now so they have good chemistry. They passed along birthday greetings, pointed out a good foul ball catch by a young child and kept up a friendly banter during the game.

Category: Analysis
Grade: 50

Fosse’s experience as a catcher and many years as an analyst serve him well. He pointed out nuances in Tom Halloran’s strike zone and how the pitchers had to adapt to his strike zone. He had appropriate analysis of pitches and pitch selection, explaining why certain pitches were used. He also pointed out the pitcher’s non verbals after giving up back to back home runs and how it carried over to the following batters.

Category: Production Values
Grade: 40

A low grade here because for some reason they seemed to favor a lot of low level camera shots which took away from the game in my view. The camera shots did not seem to add anything to the game and were random views of the field and batters. Otherwise the camera shots were average and did not detract from the game broadcast.

Category: Commercialism and Cutaways
Grade: 40

Nothing spectacular here, standard corporate blends that for the most part are done seamlessly. The cutaways were managed well and did not disrupt the flow of the game. Product drop ins were not obtrusive and enjoy the local color they add to a broadcast. However, one annoying thing was that the volume seemed to increase for announcements about Comcast SportsNet.

Category: Overall
Grade: 48

This is a solid broadcast team that does a good job during the broadcast. Kuiper and Fosse work together and feed off each other during the game. Their manner is understated and works well for them.


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DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed in this evaluation are solely those of the author.  As such, the views expressed by the author should not be interpreted as representing the opinions of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), its board, or anyone otherwise affiliated with SABR.  Likewise, the conclusions included in these evaluations are not to be viewed or interpreted as official endorsements (or lack thereof) by SABR, or of anyone affiliated with SABR, of any particular broadcasters or broadcast organizations.

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