Keith Olbermann’s zig-zagging path between pointed political commentary and the toy department of sports zips over to TBS this fall, where he will be the host of the cabler’s Major League Baseball postseason studio show.
I’m a fan of Olbermann on sports, dating back to his days on local news in Los Angeles and of course including his ESPN “SportsCenter” heyday, and expect that he’ll be worth watching on TBS in October. This is someone who worships baseball, has a studied appreciation of its history but isn’t so closeminded to block out the lessons of the modern statistical age.
“It’s well known that Keith is a fan of the game, and when you combine that with his studio experience, keen insight and passion for baseball and its history, he’ll add a new dimension to our MLB postseason studio shows,” said Turner president of sales, distribution and sports David Levy in a statement.
Though he does bring something of a polarizing presence, no doubt he’ll be less of a turnoff than what happens when TBS picks a theme song and then airs it ad nauseum throughout the postseason. The network almost ruined Bruce Springsteen’s “Land of Hope and Dreams” for me in 2012, which is really saying something.
Dennis Eckersley will bring the “I played the game” perspective as the TBS show’s in-studio analyst, while Cal Ripken Jr. will move out of the studio to do color commentary with Ron Darling (who has signed a contract extention with TBS) alongside play-by-play man Ernie Johnson for TBS’ Wild Card, Division Series and National League Championship Series coverage. Brian Anderson and John Smoltz will form another TBS postseason broadcasting team.