Paint the Word Picture

Marty Glickman said it best.
"Paint the word picture."

"Let the listener see the game and feel the game."

"It is not about you, the broadcaster. It is only about the listener and the game. Nobody tunes in to hear the broadcaster."

"The only way to improve at sports play by play is to practice sports play by play."

Marty was the best. Thankfully, his impact can still be heard, through the work of thousands of sportscasters in his broadcast tree.
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Where Time Stands Still for Baseball

For one weekend per year, time stands still.

This is that weekend.

For most of the year, the Norman Rockwell-esque town of Cooperstown, New York sits in hibernation, preparing to explode for its summer weekend in the national spotlight. Over the past three days - and culminating today - close to 50,000 baseball fans have descended on the quaint town to chat, tweet and post about this year’s honored few, who will be immortalized forever in the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Fans have traveled from all corners of America.  They’ve hunted for autographs and have their pictures taken during this yearly baseball reunion. In fact, 53 of the 73 living Hall of Famers are
Doubleday Field, Cooperstown, NY
scheduled to be here this weekend, making for quite a homecoming.

Saturday included the Hall of Fame awards presentation at Doubleday Field. Among the day’s recipients will be longtime Oakland A’s broadcaster Bill King, who was honored with the Ford C. Frick award for excellence in broadcasting. Rachel Robinson, the wife of Jackie, received the Hall of Fame’s Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement award. Claire Smith was bestowed the J.G. Taylor Spink award for meritorious contributions to baseball writing.

The highlight of the weekend will come today, with the Baseball Hall of Fame inductions.  The Baseball Writers Association of America has elected Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez as this year’s crop of immortals. (Note the throngs of fans decked out in Astros, Expos and Rangers team gear.) Rounding out the inductions will be Today’s Game Era inductees John Schuerholz and Bud Selig. And yes, I’m sure Mr. Selig is prepared for the boos, which are undoubtedly coming his way.

While baseball may not have been conceived in cozy Cooperstown, New York, as legend asserts, the game has undoubtedly found it’s magical home.

The place where time stands still one weekend per year.

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Keep Your Sportscasting Focus Where it Belongs

"Keep your eye on the ball!"

Anyone who played baseball can probably recall hearing that piece of advice from a parent or Little League coach.
A similar piece of advice can be offered to aspiring play by play broadcasters  as well.
"Keep your focus on the game!"
A listener or viewer tunes in for one thing - and one thing only.
The game.

Minimize your discussion about other sports or other games. Your listener has plenty of places to keep up with those things in seconds.

Check your politics at the door. Sports are the toy department of life, and your viewers may be tuning in specifically to escape the drumbeat of negativity.

You owe it to your listeners and viewers to give them what they came for. The game.

Keep your focus where it belongs.
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