American Sports In The 1950s

Monday, January 24, 2022 7:13:16 PM

American Sports In The 1950s



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1950's History: Sports and Games

ABC's deal [38] [39] covered all of the teams except the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies [40] who had their own television deals and called for two regionalized games on Saturdays, Independence Day , and Labor Day. ABC blacked out the games in the home cities of the clubs playing those games. To make matters worse, local television split the big-city audience. Therefore, ABC could show the Cubs vs. All he lacked was time. The San Francisco-Los Angeles game on Labor Day was the first meeting between those two clubs since a melee from about two weeks prior involving Giants pitcher Juan Marichal cracking Dodgers catcher John Roseboro on the head during a brawl.

Jackie Robinson worked with Merle Harmon on at least, the St. Louis - Cincinnati contest on April It was around this time that ABC suggested that Major League Baseball reduce their regular season schedule to just 60 games. They also wanted to promote baseball in the same manner as football, as a major television event. The rights fees paid by the two networks were For most of its time on ABC, the Monday night games were held on "dead travel days" when few games were scheduled. The team owners liked that arrangement as the national telecasts didn't compete against their stadium box offices. ABC on the other hand, found the arrangement far more complicated.

ABC often had only one or two games to pick from for each telecast from a schedule designed by Major League Baseball. While trying to give all of the teams national exposure, ABC ended up with far too many games between sub. Reviewing the network's first two weeks of coverage for Sports Illustrated , William Leggett opined: "It may be unfair to say that Monday Night Baseball , as it has been presented by ABC so far this season, is the worst television treatment ever given a major sport, because by all odds somebody at sometime must have done something worse.

But it is difficult to remember when or where that might have happened. ABC Sports had to gain special permission from both Major League Baseball and the home team to put the camera in center field. Michaels initially worked in the booth alongside Bob Gibson and Norm Cash. The following year , Cash would be replaced by Bill White , who himself, would remain with ABC through the season. Roone Arledge stated that "It'll take something different for it to work - i.

Prince disclosed to his broadcasting partner Jim Woods about his early worries about calling a network series for the first time. Although Prince received a warm reception, he was confused when the next day the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette read: " Ratings are low, negative reviews rampant. On June 28, , the Detroit Tigers faced the New York Yankees on Monday Night Baseball , with 47, attending at Tiger Stadium and a national television audience, Tigers pitcher Mark "The Bird" Fidrych [66] talked to the ball and groomed the mound, as the Tigers won, 5—1 in a game that lasted only 1 hour and 51 minutes.

After the game, the crowd would not leave the park until Fidrych came out of the dugout to tip his cap. For the first three innings, Prince did play-by-play with Wolf on color commentary and Uecker doing field interviews. For the middle innings, Uecker worked play-by-play with Prince on color and Wolf doing the interviews. For the rest of the game, Wolf worked play-by-play with Uecker on color and Prince doing interviews.

Thus, Bob Uecker filled-in [77] for Jackson for Game 1. Still on the disabled list toward the end of the season, Mark Fidrych worked as a guest color analyst on a Monday Night Baseball telecast for ABC; he was subsequently criticized for his lack of preparation, as when play-by-play partner Al Michaels tried talking with him about Philadelphia Phillies player Richie Hebner and Fidrych responded, "Who's Richie Hebner? The World Series [79] marked the first time that the participating teams' local announcers were not used as the booth announcers on the network telecast of a World Series. In previous years, the play-by-play announcers and color commentators had alternated roles during each game.

White worked the ABC telecasts for the games in New York including the clubhouse trophy presentation ceremony after Game 6 while Porter did likewise for the games in Los Angeles. Howard Cosell was widely attributed with saying the famous phrase " The Bronx is burning". Cosell is credited with saying the quote during Game 2 of the World Series , which took place in Yankee Stadium on October 12, For a couple of years, fires had routinely erupted in the South Bronx , mostly due to low-value property owners setting their own properties ablaze for insurance money. During the bottom of the first inning, an ABC aerial camera panned a few blocks from Yankee Stadium to a building on fire, giving the world a real-life view of the infamous Bronx fires.

The scene became a defining image of New York City in the s. Cosell supposedly stated, "There it is, ladies and gentlemen, The Bronx is burning. In , author Jonathan Mahler published Ladies and Gentlemen, The Bronx is Burning , a book on New York in , and credited Cosell with saying the title quote during the aerial coverage of the fire. Cosell's comment seemed to have captured the widespread view held at the time that New York City was on the skids and in a state of decline. Coverage of the fire begins with Keith Jackson commenting on the enormity of the blaze, while Cosell added that President Carter had visited that area just days before.

As the top of the second inning began, the fire was once again shown from a helicopter-mounted camera, and Cosell commented that the New York Fire Department had a hard job to do in the Bronx as there were always numerous fires. In the bottom of the second, Cosell informed the audience that it was an abandoned building that was burning and no lives were in danger. There was no further comment on the fire, and Cosell appears to have never said "The Bronx is Burning" at least not on camera during Game 2. In , [84] Drysdale covered the World Series Trophy presentation.

According to Drysdale "My thing is to talk about inside things. Keith [Jackson] does play-by-play. Howard's [Cosell] role is anything since anything can happen in broadcasting. That night before a national viewing audience on ABC's Monday Night Baseball the Yankees beat the Baltimore Orioles 5—4 in New York, with Murcer driving in all five runs with a three-run home run in the seventh inning and a two-run single in the bottom of the ninth. After the sixth game, Howard Cosell in his limo was surrounded and attacked by angry Oriole fans with shaving cream, which prompted Baltimore police to complement his private security for Game 7.

ABC hardly showed many baseball games during the regular season in the s. And when they did, it was only on either Monday or Thursday nights from the end of Sweeps Week in late May until when the NFL preseason started in the first week of August. After that, they typically would not broadcast baseball again until the playoffs. ABC also had a clause where they could air a game the last day of the regular season if it had playoff implications, such as in in regards to the Detroit Tigers ' American League East pennant chase against the Toronto Blue Jays. ABC's contract was further modified prior to the season, with the network airing just five Monday Night Baseball telecasts in June of that year, followed by Sunday Afternoon Baseball in August and September.

ABC did Sunday afternoon games late in the season in order to fulfill the number of games in the contract and to not interfere with Monday Night Football. In the meantime, Don Drysdale did the play-by-play for the early innings up until the middle of the fourth inning. In , ABC planned to increase coverage to 10 Monday night games and eight Sunday afternoon [92] [93] [94] [95] [96] [97] [98] [99] [] [] [] [] games, but the players' strike that year ended up reducing the network's schedule to three Monday night and seven Sunday afternoon telecasts. Also in , as means to recoup revenue lost during a players' strike, Major League Baseball set up a special additional playoff round as a prelude to the League Championship Series.

The Division Series round wasn't officially instituted until 14 years later. Stone was normally paired with Al Michaels [] and Bob Uecker [] in the booth. Also in , Baltimore Orioles manager Earl Weaver announced he would retire at the end of the season, one which saw the Orioles wallow at the back of the pack for the first half of the year before climbing in the standings to just three games behind going into a season-ending four-game series against the division-leading Milwaukee Brewers at Baltimore 's Memorial Stadium.

The Orioles beat them handily in the first three games to pull into a first-place tie. The final game of the series, and the season, on October 3, would decide the AL East title. After the game, the crowd called for Weaver to come out. This tribute to the retiring Weaver provided intense emotion against the backdrop of the season-ending defeat, as Weaver, in tears, stood on the field and applauded back to the fans, and shared words and an embrace with Brewers manager Harvey Kuenn. Game 1 of the NLCS had to be played twice.

In the first attempt on October 6 , the Atlanta Braves led against the St. Louis Cardinals 1—0 behind Phil Niekro. The game was three outs away becoming official when the umpire stopped it. When the rain did not subside, the game was canceled. ABC was contracted to televise 20 prime time regular season games a year in addition to other games the aforementioned Sunday afternoon games.

But ABC didn't come close to using that many, which meant they actually paid for games they weren't showing. To give you some perspective, ABC televised six prime time games in and eight They planned to again televise eight prime time games in One of the provisions to the new deal was that local telecasts opposite network games had to be eliminated. Michaels, who spent seven seasons working backup games, was apparently very miffed [] over ABC Sports ' delay in announcing him as their top baseball announcer.

TV Guide huffed about Jackson by saying "A football guy, on baseball! Thus, Michaels did play-by-play for games on weekends. Earl Weaver was the lead ABC color commentator in , but was also employed by the Baltimore Orioles as a consultant. At the time, ABC had a policy preventing an announcer who was employed by a team from working games involving that team. The NLCS [] schedule which had an off day after Game 3 rather than Game 2 allowed ABC to have a prime time game each weeknight even though Chicago 's Wrigley Field [] [] [] [] [] did not have lights at the time which remained the case until four years later.

ET time start instead of being in prime time. This would have happened because one of the presidential debates [] between Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale was scheduled for that night. In return, ABC was going to broadcast the debates instead of a baseball game in prime time. Al Trautwig [] interviewed the Detroit Tigers from their clubhouse following their pennant clinching victory in Game 3. In , ABC announced that every game of the World Series [] would be played under the lights for the biggest baseball audience possible. In Cosell's place came Tim McCarver [] joining play-by-play man Michaels and fellow color commentator Jim Palmer , who was beginning his trek of being a part of numerous World Series telecasts.

Reportedly, by , Cosell was considered to be difficult to work with on baseball telecasts. Apparently, Cosell and Michaels got into a fairly heated argument following the conclusion of their coverage of the American League Championship Series due to Cosell's supposed drunkenness among other problems. Ultimately, Michaels went public with his problems with Cosell. No late season games in September [] were scheduled in TSN added that the network only wanted the sport for October anyway. Going into , ABC had reportedly purchased 20 Monday night games but only used eight of those slots.

Bench took a week off in June with Steve Busby filling in and also worked one game with Michaels as the networks switched the announcer pairings. While Drysdale worked the All-Star Game in Houston as an interviewer, he did not resurface until the playoffs. Bench simply disappeared, ultimately going to CBS Radio. That same game, color commentator Tim McCarver left the booth during the bottom of the 16th, in order to cover the expected celebration in the New York Mets ' clubhouse. As a result, play-by-play man Keith Jackson was on the air alone for a short time.

Eventually, McCarver rejoined the broadcast just before the end of the game, watching the action on a monitor in the Mets' clubhouse, then doing the postgame interviews with the Mets. Louis Cardinals , ABC utilized 12 cameras and nine tape machines. This includes cameras positioned down the left field line, on the roof of the Metrodome , and high above third base. There have been a few occasions when two Monday Night Football games were played simultaneously. Game 6 of the World Series played on Saturday, October 24 was the last World Series game to not be played in prime time.

The game started at 4 p. Eastern Time. Another weekend afternoon sixth game was planned for , however, since the World Series ended in five games, it was unnecessary. ABC only covered Games 1, and a seventh game had it been necessary. In a February interview, Al Michaels alleged the Twins pumped artificial crowd noise into the Metrodome during the World Series. Peter said that he did not think the Twins needed "conspiracy theories" in order to win the World Series. Instead, he argued that "appreciation and respect" should be paid to players like Frank Viola , Gary Gaetti , Kent Hrbek , and Kirby Puckett , who, he said, "came out of nowhere to win a championship.

During the Writers Guild of America strike , networks benefited from sports programming, including NBC , which relied on the Summer Olympics in September and the World Series in October, and ABC, which in addition to its postseason baseball coverage, [] [] moved up the start time for the early weeks of Monday Night Football when Al Michaels was unavailable to do play-by-play on Monday Night Football , which he had done for ABC beginning in due to his postseason baseball duties, Frank Gifford covered for him from 9 p.

ET MacGyver , which normally aired at 8 p. Come the League Championship Series, [] [] [] [] [] [] ABC under the guidance of new executive producer Geoffrey Mason, [] debuted fatter and wider graphics [] that gave off a cleaner, sharper look complete with a black border. ABC also debuted a new energetic, symphonic-pop styled musical theme, [] [] composed by Kurt Bestor , [] which would become an all-compassing theme of sorts for ABC Sports during this time period. ET due to a presidential debate. This is the latest ever scheduled start for an LCS game. Reggie is one of the strongest personalities I've ever met. He epitomizes the big-name athlete who has become a great player, in part because of his ego, but who does not have the sensitivity to let go of that ego when working with others.

Consequently, Reggie demanded things he hadn't earned the right to demand. He wanted more attention. He insisted we adjust our way of doing things for him. During the spare time of his active career, Reggie Jackson worked as a field reporter and color commentator for ABC Sports. During the s , , and respectively , Jackson was given the task of presiding over the World Series Trophy presentations. It was one of the largest agreements [] to date between the sport of baseball and the business of broadcasting.

According to industry insiders, neither NBC nor ABC wanted the entire baseball package—that is, regular-season games, both League Championship Series and the World Series—because such a commitment would have required them to preempt too many highly rated prime time shows. Thus, ABC and NBC bid thinking that two of the networks might share postseason play again or that one of the championship series might wind up on cable. Peter Ueberroth had encouraged the cable idea, but after the bids were opened, NBC and ABC found to their chagrin that he preferred network exposure for all postseason games.

Only CBS, with its weak prime time programming, dared go for that. But since the Blue Jays managed to clinch the divisional title the day prior, it wasn't necessary. After braving the traumatic Loma Prieta earthquake [] and an all-time low I'll miss it. In the early years, we attempted to cover it in a different fashion. A number of people in our company wanted to cover baseball like gymnastics and swimming and other 'Wide World' events. Attempting to do that was basically, in the early years, an abysmal failure. Baseball needs to be looked at in a certain manner. You need people in it who understand the game and truly love the game. It took us a while to get the right people and the right group together.

I know some of the NBC people recently have talked about their cameramen, their audio men, the guys involved with their telecasts are baseball fans. They love baseball. It took us a while to get up to speed in that area. But once we did, we began to cover it as well as it's been covered. I'm tremendously proud of what we have done, especially from the postseason coverage on. We got to a point, especially in the last couple of years, where nothing can stop us now. And the only thing that stopped us was the fact we lost the rights. By this point in time, ABC Sports was well into cost-cutting mode [] and trying to avoid unnecessarily expenditure. ABC decided that in order to save money, there would be no satellite uplink trunk present at San Francisco 's Candlestick Park.

For starters, the signal would go from the truck to a telephone company room dubbed a "clamper room" at the third level of the stadium. From there, the signal would be transmitted over a fiber optic cable onto the local phone company switching office. The signal would then pass through KGO's Master Control Room and soon uplinked to a satellite which relayed the signal to a downlink in Connecticut. Rapak added that in order to save further costs, ABC decided that an on-site telephone company technician wasn't really necessary.

As such, ABC wouldn't pay to have him on site just in case any problems might have arise with the phone company's equipment. Not only that, but ABC merely rented a small standby generator to protect them in the event of a power failure. This particular switch would be able to shift the entire load of all the mobile units from local utility power to the generator with a single pull of a large lever. But since ABC's engineers who were working at Candlestick Park during the World Series had no means of quickly putting the generator into service should the need arise, they would have to instead, kill the utility power sources for safety.

They would then have to disconnect more than a dozen huge power cables from the power boxes inside of the stadium. Next, they would have to physically drag the power cables outside of the stadium and reconnect all of them in order to turn the generator on. This in effect, meant that the changeover would've taken approximately 10 minutes, when it could've simply taken less than a minute. If you'll indulge us just another moment, this is the end of our association with baseball.

I think as many of you may know, the primary package goes to CBS. And to our friends at what's known in the industry as " Black Rock ", good luck in and beyond. To those of you at NBC , for 41 years you made this an art form! And to people especially like Curt Gowdy Sr. We want to thank you for watching and we want to thank all the people that have come together to work on our telecasts. And Craig Janoff and to the incomparable Steve Hirdt , it's been a great ride for 14 years. We're going to show you all the names right now, gentlemen Prior to the start of the season , speculation arose that Al Michaels would move over to CBS in the event that he won an arbitration case against ABC. Tim McCarver [] [] [] had already been hired by CBS to serve as their lead color commentator and they were in need of a play-by-play man following the abrupt departure [] [] [] [] [] following the abrupt dismissal of [] [] Brent Musburger [] [] [] on April Fools' Day Michaels had been feuding [] with the network over an alleged violation of company policy.

Michaels' contract with ABC was originally set to expire in late That would make Michaels the highest-paid sports announcer in television. Meanwhile, CBS eventually settled on using the services of Jack Buck [] [] [] [] for their top play-by-play man. Game 3 of the World Series [] [] [] initially scheduled for October 17 [] was delayed by ten days due to the Loma Prieta earthquake. Pacific Time. Viewers saw the video signal begin to break up, heard McCarver repeat a sentence as the shaking distracted him, and heard McCarver's colleague Al Michaels [] exclaim, "I'll tell you what, we're having an earth—. Michaels had to pickup a POTS phone in the press booth phones work off a separate power supply and call ABC headquarters in New York, at which point they put him back on the air.

Michaels cracked, "Well folks, that's the greatest open in the history of television, bar none! Al Michaels was ultimately nominated for an Emmy for his on-site reporting at the World Series. The Goodyear Blimp was aloft above the ballpark to provide aerial coverage of the World Series. Blimp pilot John Crayton reported that he felt four bumps during the quake. At this very moment ten days ago, we began our telecast with an aerial view of San Francisco ; always a spectacular sight, and particularly so on that day because the cloudless sky of October 17 was ice blue, and the late-day sun sparkled like a thousand jewels. That picture was very much a mirror of the feel and the mood that had enveloped the Bay Area Their baseball teams, the Giants and A's , had won pennants, and the people of this region were still basking in the afterglow of each team's success.

And this great American sporting classic, the World Series , was, for the time being, exclusively theirs. Then of course the feeling of pure radiance was transformed into horror and grief and despair- in just fifteen seconds. And one part of that scenario is the resumption of the World Series. No one in this ballpark tonight- no player, no vendor, no fan, no writer, no announcer, in fact, no one in this area period- can forget the images. However, after World War II ended and the suburbs began to boom, more and more people began opening diners nationwide. The small businesses could prove extremely profitable for owners. Since the restaurants themselves were so small, and the kitchens so narrow, not many employees were required.

Source: Curbed. Travelers along the new highways could stop off and grab a quick bite at the roadside establishments. Many diners featured a row of bar stools along a counter, allowing many people to be served without much effort from the diner's staff. Most diners had galley kitchens that made it easier for cooks to move from one dish to another, making service quicker than in a traditional restaurant. Items like pancakes, sausages, meatloaf, burgers, and sandwiches were typically served in the restaurants and still are in diners today. The meals were low-priced, making diners popular even before their rise in the s. During the Great Depression, diners provided an inexpensive way for families to go out to eat. Since diners are open all night long, many pop culture depictions of diners involve a feeling of loneliness and isolation.

Edward Hopper's painting "Nighthawks" shows a diner and its few occupants late at night. Source: Art Institute of Chicago. Suzanne Vega, who wrote the '80s hit song "Tom's Diner," said, "The attraction of the diner is that it's a sort of a midway point between the street and home. Source: BBC. Michael C. Gabriele, who wrote "The History of Diners in New Jersey," told the Telegraph that "diners are the state's ultimate gathering places — at any moment, high school students, CEOs, construction workers, and tourists might be found at a counter chatting with the waitresses and line cooks.

During the civil rights movement, diners became a popular place for activists to hold "sit-ins" in restaurants that refused to seat black people, despite many of them employing black people to work there. In , Congress outlawed segregation through the Civil Rights Act, but many diners in the South continued to segregate their establishments, afraid that "seating blacks would drive away white patrons. Shop our selection of dolls, books, and more that help build girls of strong character. Welcome back! If you have saved your information by registering at americangirl. Please use the email associated with your account.

As an email subscriber, you can choose what news you receive—special offers, product introductions, store event notifications, and more. For many, the s were a time of prosperity—but also conformity. Maryellen Larkin always hopes to make a grand impression. Only when she focuses her talents on what matters does her ability to stand out yield outstanding results.

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