1969 MLB Season
As originally written by Tim Brulia:
1969. Professional Baseball's Centennial. 23 of 24 teams (save Pittsburgh) wore a special patch to commemorate the founding of the Cincinnati Red Stockings in 1869. Many other special moments were celebrated by baseball.
MLB expanded by adding new teams in Kansas City, Seattle, San Diego and Montreal. This necessitated an expansion of another sort with the introduction of two six team divisions in both leagues and a best-of-five League Playoff set up, which would eventually be known as the League Championship Series (LCS).
There would be tweaks to the A and B crews of NBC as well.
Post season crews and information are courtesy of Jeff79's master work.
Giants-Padres, 3:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Red Sox-Indians, 3:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Athletics-Royals, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Pilots-White Sox, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Red Sox-Tigers, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Twins-White Sox, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Phillies-Cardinals, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Padres-Reds, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Reds-Expos, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax (rained out)
Tigers-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Senators-White Sox, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Cardinals-Dodgers, 4:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek, Mickey Mantle
Pirates-Giants, 4:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Tigers-Pilots, 3:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek, Mickey Mantle
Twins-Red Sox, 3:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
White Sox-Red Sox, 8:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Braves-Cardinals, 8:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Reds-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Senators-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Orioles-White Sox, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Indians-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Giants-Braves, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Expos-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Tigers-Orioles, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Cardinals-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Athletics-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Orioles-Tigers, 2:15, NBC. Charlie Jones, Sandy Koufax
Phillies-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Pirates-Cardinals, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Dodgers-Giants, 4:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Mets-Expos, 4:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Baseball All-Star Game from Washington:
National-American, 1:45, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek, Mickey Mantle
Note: The All-Star Game was originally scheduled for 7/22 at 8:15, but was rained out.
Dodgers-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Giants-Cardinals, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Orioles-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek, Mickey Mantle
White Sox-Tigers, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Mets-Braves, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Angels-Red Sox, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Athletics-Orioles, 8:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Mets-Astros, 8:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Pirates-Reds, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Cardinals-Braves, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Astros-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Yankees-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Charlie Jones*, Sandy Koufax
Red Sox-Twins, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Cubs-Braves, 2:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
8:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek (rained out)
Cardinals-Astros, 8:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Phillies-Mets, 2:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Pirates-Cubs, 2:15, NBC. Charlie Jones*, Sandy Koufax
Reds-Giants, 4:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Mets-Pirates, 4:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Don Drysdale
Dodgers-Giants, 4:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Braves-Padres, 4:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Giants-Dodgers, 4:15, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Padres-Braves, 4:15, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES
Game 1, Twins-Orioles, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Game 1, Mets-Braves, 4:00, NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Game 2, Mets-Braves, 4:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Game 3, Braves-Mets, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek
Game 3, Orioles-Twins, 2:30 (JIP at approx. 4:00), NBC. Jim Simpson, Sandy Koufax
Note: Game 2 of MIN-BAL was not televised by NBC, Thus it is not listed. From here on, if a post season game is not carried by a network or national cable channel, it will not be listed.
Game 1, Mets-Orioles, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Bill O'Donnell, Tony Kubek
Game 2, Mets-Orioles, 2:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Bill O'Donnell, Tony Kubek
Game 3, Orioles-Mets, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Lindsey Nelson, Tony Kubek
Game 4, Orioles-Mets, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Lindsey Nelson, Tony Kubek
Game 5, Orioles-Mets, 1:00, NBC. Curt Gowdy, Lindsey Nelson, Tony Kubek
Local Radio Info
Originally written by garretta
Now let's look at 1969. We begin with the National League East on radio:
Cardinals: KMOX-AM will be the flagship of a network numbering more than a hundred stations. The network will carry all regular season games plus twenty exhibition games. Busch Bavarian Beer will sponsor half of each game, while D-X Sunray sponsors three innings, Other sponsors include General Finance and First National Bank. Harry Caray and Jack Buck will call the games.
Phillies: WCAU-AM will head a twenty-three-station network in the Mid-Atlantic region. The network will carry the entire regular season plus twenty exhibitions. Two pregame shows are also planned. Atlantic-Richfield and Ballantine Beer will each sponsor three innings of each game; other sponsors include Tastykake, B.F. Goodrich, and the local Dodge Dealers. Byrum Saam, Richie Ashburn. and Bill Campbell will describe the action,
Pirates: KDKA-AM will head a twenty-eight-station network in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Maryland. The network will air all regular season games plus some exhibitions. (The article doesn't say how many exhibitions will be carried.) Pre- and postgame shows will air on KDKA only. Bob Prince, Jim Woods, and Tom Bender will describe the action. Atlantic-Richfield and Pittsburgh Brewing will each sponsor three innings of every game; other sponsors include Foodland Supermarkets and the local Chrysler-Plymouth Dealers.
Montreal Expos: Nothing has been settled as of press time. The team is negotiating with the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) for its radio and television contracts. The CBC will begin the sale of sponsorships after the deal is signed. Rights costs, the number of stations that would broadcast the games, and the number of games to be broadcast are among the issues to be decided.
There's also the matter of whether there will be separate English and French game feeds. At this time, an English-language radio network is being considered, while French-language stations hope to at least broadcast the opening game against the Mets on April 8. According to the article, French-language broadcasts may be limited due to unspecified scheduling problems.
Mets: The biggest change for the Mets this year is that their radio network appears to be gone. Only three stations will carry games this year: flagship WJRZ-AM Hackensack (New Jersey). WGLI-AM Babylon, and WABC-FM New York. The stations will carry all regular season games plus twenty-seven exhibitions. Sponsors include Rheingold Beer. Citgo, Household Finance, RC Cola, and Avco. The pre- and postgame shows will be sponsored on WJRZ by Mallory Batteries and the local Rambler Dealers. Lindsey Nelson, Bob Murphy. and Ralph Kiner will be on the call.
Cubs: WGN-AM will head an eight-station Wisconsin network that will broadcast all regular season games plus ten exhibition games. Sponsors include Oak Park Federal, G. Heileman Brewing, Serta Mattress, Montgomery Ward, Martin Oil, and the local Buick Dealers. Vince Lloyd and Lou Boudreau are your announcers. (Note: The network was put together after last season started.) This is the second year of a three-year contract.
Now for the National League West in 1969.
Braves: WSB-AM will be the flagship station. The number of stations in the network wasn't set at press time, but it was expected to be close to last year's total of forty-seven. The network will air all regular season games plus ten exhibitions. Stations are expected to be signed in Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee. and Florida. Sponsors are Coca-Cola, Pure Oil, and P. Lorillard. Pre- and postgame shows are also planned. Milo Hamilton and Ernie Johnson will call the action.
Astros: KPRC-AM will head a thirty-two-station network in Texas, Arkansas, New Mexico, and Louisiana. It will carry the regular season schedule plus twenty to twenty-five exhibition games. Schlitz Beer and Texaco will each sponsor three innings a game; other sponsors include Coca-Cola and Duncan Foods. Gene Elston, Loel Passe. and Harry Kalas are your announcers. The team's Spanish-language radio network is expected to return thus year, but no details are set. Last year it included about eighty stations in Mexico, Central America, and South America. Rene Cardenas and Orlando Sanchez Diago are expected to return as its announcers.
Reds: WLW-AM has acquired the radio rights and signed a two-year contract. Wiedemann Brewing holds all of the radio time and sells off the amount it doesn't want to other sponsors; at press time Pepsi-Cola and B.F. Goodrich had each bought some. The radio network has dropped from a hundred stations last year with WCKY-AM as the flagship to seventy-four this year. The network will carry all regular season games plus about twenty exhibition games. There are twenty minutes of commercial time in each broadcast this year. Jim McIntyre and Joe Nuxhall are your announcers
The pregame and warmup shows are sponsored by Swallens Appliances, Frisch Restaurants, and the local Volkswagen Dealers. The Cincinnati Enquirer will sponsor half of the postgame show, with the other half still open.
Giants: KSFO-AM will head a network of at least fourteen stations; two other stations in Arizona will probably join but weren't confirmed at press time. The network will carry all regular season games plus fourteen exhibitions. Weekend games will probably be broadcast in Hawaii, and Saturday games will be broadcast on a special nine-station network in Alaska. Game sponsors on radio are Standard Oil of California, Burgemeister Brewing, Roos-Atkins, and Pacific Telephone. Bill Thompsom will join television broadcasters Russ Hodges and Lon Simmons in the radio booth.
The pre-pregame shows are sponsored by American Express and Fidelity Savings and Loan. The pre- and postgame shows will be sponsored on a rotating basis by Varner-Ward Leasing Company, Allstate Insurance, Western Airlines and Kilpatrick's Bakeries.
Dodgers: KFI-AM will lead a twelve-station network that will air all regular season games plus twenty-seven exhibition games over a twelve-station network in California, Arizona, and Hawaii. KWKW-AM Los Angeles will broadcast the games in Spanish. There will be two pregame shows: the fifteen-minute Dodger Warm-Up with play-by-play announcers Vin Scully and Jerry Doggett, and Batter Up with Chuck Bennett. The fifteen-minute postgame show will also be hosted by Scully and Doggett, Game sponsors are Union Oil of California, Pacific Telephone, and Burgemeister Brewing. Pre- and postgame sponsorships were uncertain at press time.
San Diego Padres: KOGO-AM is the flagship of a six-station network in California, Arizona, and Nevada. As of press time, no sponsors had been signed. Radio and TV sponsorships are being sold as a package, and a sponsor will get an equal share of radio and TV time for their money. Jerry Gross and Frank Sims will call the games, with Duke Snider providing occasional commentary.
Now let's look at radio in the American League East for 1969:
Indians: WERE-AM is the head of a twenty-five-station network that will broadcast all regular season games, ten spring training exhibitions, and two midseason exhibitions. This is the second year of a five-year contract. Sponsors signed at press time are Pure Oil, Bill's Clothes, and Stroh's Beer. Your announcers are Bob Neal and Herb Score.
Red Sox: WHDH-AM is the flagship of a forty-station network that reaches all over New England. The network will air all regular season games plus six exhibition games. Narragansett Beer and Atlantic-Richfield will each sponsor three innings a game on radio. An inning and a half a game will be sponsored by the local Chrysler Dealers, with the other inning and a half unsold. There will be two pregame shows: the five-minute Warm-Up Time and the fifteen-minute Dugout Interview, and a fifteen-minute postgame show. Sports Extra. Ken Coleman, Ned Martin, and Johnny Pesky will call the action.
Senators: WTOP-AM declined to pick up its option, and the team has delayed its search for a new radio outlet until a new manager is named. WWDC-AM and WASH-FM have expressed interest, but a possible stumbling block may be owner Bob Short's insistence on hiring the announcers himself. He's already lined up one of his trucking companies as a partial sponsor, but that company doesn't serve the Washington metropolitan area.
Orioles: WBAL-AM is the flagship of a seventy-five-station network with outlets in Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. The network will carry all regular season games plus thirteen exhibition games. The pre- ad postgame shows will only be carried on WBAL; the pregame show will be sponsored by Midas Mufflers. Chuck Thompson, Bill O'Donnell, and Jim Karvellas will call the action.
Participating advertisers include:
Central Savings Bank
The Baltimore News-American
The local Buick Dealers
The local Pepsi-Cola Bottlers
Yankees: WHN-AM is in the final year of their three-year contract. They will head a network of thirty-eight stations in New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire. All regular season games. plus thirty exhibition games. will be covered. Twenty of the exhibitions wo;; be summarized inning-by-inning, with ten receiving full play-by-play broadcasts. Sponsors signed so far are First National City Bank and Atlantic-Richfield. Marv Albert will host the fifteen-minute Warm Up pregame show and the fifteen-minute Scoreboard postgame show. Frank Messer, Phil Rizzuto, and Jerry Coleman will describe the action.
Tigers: WJR-AM is in the second and final year of its two-year contract; the station is expected to negotiate another contract at the end of the season. It will be the head of two different networks. One reaches about twenty stations on Michigan's Lower Peninsula; the other reaches about a dozen stations om Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Sponsors are Stroh's Beer, Pire Oil, Buick, B.F. Goodrich, and National Bank of Detroit. Ernie Harwell and Ray Lane are your announcers.
Now let's finish 1969 by looking at the American League West. We begin with radio:
Seattle Pilots: KVI-AM has signed a six-year contract to broadcast Pilots games. It will head a fifty-station network in Washington. Oregon, Idaho, Borth Dakota, Montana, Utah, Nevada, and Alaska. The network will carry all regular season games plus eleven exhibitions. Sponsors signed at press time include P. Lorillard, General Brewing, and Standard Oil. Jimmy Dudley and Bill Schonely will call the action. Pre- and postgame shows are scheduled but still being sold at press time. KVI is the third station owned by Golden West Broadcasters to become a flagship station for a Major League Baseball team (KMPC-Angels, KSFO-Giants).
Kansas City Royals: KMBZ-AM is the flagship of a forty-eight-station network that will cover Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. The network will carry all regular season games plus twelve exhibition games. Schlitz Brewing and Skelly Oil will each sponsor three innings a game; the rest is unsold. Buddy Blattner, Denny Matthews, and a third man to be determined will be the announcers.
White Sox: WMAQ-AM is in its third year as the White Sox' flagship station. It will carry the entire regular season plus eleven exhibition games; an additional thirteen exhibitions will be fed by WMAO to the rest of the network. Said network will consist of about ninety stations and was put together by General Finance, which will sponsor half of each game on about seventy-five stations and three innings of each game on WMAQ. Other sponsors are G. Heileman and Zenith Distributing. Bob Elson and Red Rush are your announcers.
Twins: WCCO-AM will air all regular season games plus nine exhibitions as the flagship of a network that numbers over a hundred stations in fourteen states and two Canadian provinces. Hamm's Beer, which holds the radio rights, will sponsor two and a half innings a game. Twin City Federal will sponsor three full innings. Sponsoring a half-inning each are Minnesota Blue Cross and the Northwest Heating Oil Council. Merle Harmon, Herb Carneal, and Halsey Hall will describe the action.
Athletics: KNBR-AM San Francisco will air all regular season games plus twenty-six exhibition games beginning March 8. The radio network will consist of eight to ten stations in California (several stations were still negotiating at press time). There was also the unconfirmed possibility of two stations each in Nevada and Arizona. Atlantic-Richfield will sponsor three innings a game; also sponsoring are the Bay Area Pontiac Dealers. The pregame and postgame shows will be partially sponsored by Smith Clothiers. Monte Moore is returning as the play-by-play man; his color commentator was undecided at press time. (Al Helfer was the color commentator last season.)
Angels: KMPC-AM, which has broadcast the team since its inception in 1961, will be the flagship of a twenty-two-station network in California, Nevada, and Arizona that will carry all regular season games plus twenty-three exhibitions, one more exhibition than last year. Game sponsors are P. Lorillard, Continental Airlines, Standard Oil of California, and Anheuser-Busch. Dick Enberg replaces Buddy Blattner as lead play-by-play announcer; hr'll be joined in the booth by Don Wells.
The pre- and postgame shows are fed to the network but sold locally. The fifteen-minute pregame show is Angel Warmup; the fifteen-minute postgame show is Angel Report. Sponsors for both shows are Volkswagen Pacific, Unimart Company, Dial Finance, and California Blue Shield. The five-minute pre-pregame Bill Rigney Show will be sponsored by Air West. The show that runs between doubleheader games, Angel Clubhouse, will be sponsored by Shulton Inc (makers of Old Spice).
Local TV Info
Originally written by garretta
Now to discuss television in the National League East for 1969. Sponsors and announcers are the same unless otherwise indicated:
Expos: See radio above.
Phillies: WFIL-TV is in the final year of its three-year contract. It will head a three-station network, with WLYH-TV Lebanon-Lancaster (Pennsylvania) taking night games only. Sixty regular season games and two exhibitions will be televised. All games will be in color. thirty-nine will be on the road. A five-minute pregame show with manager Bob Skinner is planned, as is a ten-minute postgame show with Les Keiter. R.J, Reynolds is an added sponsor.
Mets: WOR-TV, which is in the third year of a five-year contract, will televise 120 games. including three exhibition games, all in color. Seventy-three games will be at home, forty-six on the road. (That leaves one game unaccounted for.) Additional sponsors are R.J, Reynolds, Sun Oil, Chrysler-Plymouth (both games and Kiner's Korner), and Bank of Commerce. Kiner's Korner will only be a postgame show this season,
Cubs: WGN-TV, which is in the second year of a three-year contract, will air 144 regular season games plus two exhibitions. Sponsors include Allstate Insurance, Pure Oil, Schlitz Brewing, Commonwealth Edison, and Zenith Distributing. Thirty-seven games will also air on an eight-station network in Illinois and Wisconsin. Twenty-four will be at home, thirteen on the road. This is the third year for the Cubs' Television Network, which is being organized by WGN Continental Productions. One major sponsor difference on the network is that Pabst is the beer sponsor and has purchased half of each game. Jack Brickhouse and Lloyd Pettit are your announcers.
Cardinals: KSD-TV will head a twenty-station network that will televise twenty-four games. all in color, on stations on Missouri, Indiana, Iowa, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. Additional sponsors are R.J, Reynolds, Shell Oil, Allstate Insurance, Union Electric, Kroger, and Pontiac.
Pirates: KDKA-TV will head a three-station network that will carry thirty-eight games. all in color, Additional sponsors are R.J. Reynolds, Bell Telephone, Nationwide Insurance, and the local Plynouth Dealers. Nellie King will join Bob Prince and Jim Woods to call the games.
(This is a strange question for a sports website, but it's relevant to what I just wrote above: Were there really such things as separate Plymouth dealers? When I was growing up a few years after this, Chrysler and Plymouth always shared a dealership, as did Lincoln and Mercury. Ford and Dodge were usually separate, as were each of the GM brands, though you'd occasionally see a Chrysler-Plymouth-Dodge combination.)
Now let's discuss television in the National League West for 1969. Announcers and sponsors are the same as radio unless otherwise indicated:
Padres: Six regular season games will be televised in color by KOGO-TV. The games will only be seen in San Diego; there are no plans for a television network.
Astros: Majestic Advertising of Milwaukee has once again put together a network of eighteen stations that will televise fourteen road games, mostly in color. The flagship station is KTVT Fort Worth-Dallas. (Majestic also put together the Astros' radio network.)
Braves: WSB-TV will televise twenty games (two home, eighteen road). All games will be televised i color, and a postgame show is planned. The size of the network wasn't known at press time, but it was expected to be close to last year's twenty-three stations in Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Alabama. Bob Uecker will join Ernie Johnson and Milo Hamilton in the booth for televised games.
Reds: Hudepohl Brewing and flagship station WLWT-TV share the team's television rights. Hudepohl will sponsor one-sixth of each game, which equals an inning and a half; the rest remains unsold. Ed Kennedy will be one of the broadcasters; the other hasn't been named yet. Thirty-five games will be telecast, all in color, by WLWT and the following network stations:
WLWC-TV Columbus (Ohio)
WLWD-TV Dayton (Ohio)
WLWI-TV Indianapolis (Indiana)
WLEX-TV Lexington (Kentucky)
WSAZ-TV Huntington (West Virginia)
Giants: KTVU-TV Oakland-San Francisco, in its ninth year of Giants telecasts, will air nineteen road games, all in color. There will be exhibition games from Phoenix and Palm Springs as well as the traditional nine games against the Dodgers in Los Angeles as well as telecasts from the new National League cities of Montreal and San Diego. Russ Hodges will host Giants Warm Up, while Lon Simmons hosts Giants Clubhouse. Sponsors on a rotating basis are Standard Oil of California, Allstate Insurance, Phillip Morris, Volvo, General Brewing, United Vintners, and Household Finance. The rotation will be in place for pre- and postgame shows as well as games.
Dodgers: KTTV-TV, which has televised the Dodgers every year since they arrived in Los Angeles in 1958, will televise between two and four exhibition games, the nine games they play in San Francisco against the Giants, and the nine they play in San Diego against the expansion Padres. All games will be in color. Pre- and postgame sponsors were not set at press time.
Now to discuss television in the American League East for 1969. Sponsors and announcers are the same as radio unless otherwise indicated:
Senators: WTOP-TV will televise thirty-five games in color, twenty-four of them road games. Sponsors and announcers have yet to be determined.
Indians: WJW-TV, which is in the final year of a three-year contract, leads a four-station network that will televise forty-eight games (twenty home, twenty-eight road) in color. Sponsors signed at press time include Sun Oil, R.J. Reynolds, and Allstate Insurance. Harry Jones and Dave Martin will call the action.
Red Sox: WHDH-TV, which is in the final year of a three-year contract, is the head of a seven-station network reaching throughout New England. R.J. Reynolds is an additional game sponsor, There will be a half-hour pregame show call Baseball Close-Up as well as a fifteen-minute postgame show.
Yankees: WPIX-TV will be the flagship of a five-station network in New York and Connecticut. The network will televise approximately 105 games, including five exhibitions. Last year, the network showed 115 games. All games will be in color. Additional sponsors include Pabst Beer and American Airlines. Whitey Ford will do color commentary on televised night and weekend home games.
Orioles: WJZ-TV has just signed a new three-year contract and will televise fifty-two games this year (forty-five road, seven home). There were no firm plans for a regional network. Additional sponsors include Sun Oil, R.J. Reynolds, and Tastykake. The twenty-five-minute studio pregame show an the postgame Baseball Scoreboard0 are being sold to participating advertisers; the five-minute Pregame Warmup will be sponsored on an alternating basis by Hauswald Bakery and Household Finance.
Tigers: WJBK-TV will be the flagship of the Tigers' network, which will carry forty games. Ten will be at home, with thirty on the road. All games will be in color, and fifteen of the road games will be seen in prime time. One exhibition game will also be televised.
The team is packaging their own broadcasts and selling their own advertising for the fifth consecutive year; each of the eighteen units costs $88,000. Pabst Beer has bought the most units with five, followed by Sun Oil with four, R.J. Reynolds with three, and Oldsmobile with two, Allstate Insurance, AC Spark Plugs. General Cigar. and Faygo Beverages have each bought one. When the team started selling units five years ago, only nine were sold for $78, 000 apiece. George Kell and Larry Osterman will be on the call.
Here are the network stations:
WKZO-TV Kalamazoo (Michigan); owned by Tigers owner John Fetzer
WNEM-TV Flint-Saginaw-Bay City (Michigan)
WJIM-TV Lansing (Michigan)
WWTV-TV Cadillac (Michigan)
WSPD-TV Toledo (Ohio); will air all games; sales separate from rest of network
WKJG-TV Fort Wayne (Indiana); will air about twenty games; sales separate from rest of network
Now to discuss television in the American League West in 1969. Sponsors and announcers are the same as radio unless otherwise indicated:
Royals: KMBC-TV will televise twenty-sic road games, most of them in color, and feed them to at least two stations: WIBW-TV Topeka (Kansas) and KMOS-TV Sedalia (Missouri). Negotiations to add other stations are underway. Additional sponsors include R.J. Reynolds and Pontiac.
Twins: WTCN-TV heads a fifteen-station network that will carry fifty games in color (four home, forty-six road), Stations are located in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Wisconsin. This is the third year of a three-year contract. Additional sponsors are Pure Oil, R.J. Reynolds, Allstate Insurance, and Dairy Queen.
White Sox: WFLD-TV will air two exhibition games and 135 regular season games, all on color. (Games in Anaheim, Oakland, and Seattle will be untelevised except if the White Sox are in a division title race.) Some games will also be televised by WVTV-TV Milwaukee; details were being worked out at press time. Seventy-three percent of all Chicago homes receive UHF. Meister Brau Brewing is an additional sponsor. Jack Drees and Mel Parnell will call the action.
Angels: KTLA-TV will televise thirty games (six exhibitions, twenty-four regular season games). all in color. The pre- and postgame shows will be sponsored on a rotating basis by Household Finance and General Mills. Additional sponsors are Volkswagen Pacific and Allstate Insurance. Dan O'Neil takes over the postgame show from Dick Enberg, who's the lead play-by-play voice this year.
Athletics: KBHK-TV San Francisco will televise twenty-five games on twenty-four dates. One exhibition may also be telecast. All games will be televised in color. Hamm's Beer is an additional sponsor for two minutes a game. Other stations receiving the games are:
KOVR-TV Sacramento (California)
KMJ-TV Fresno (California)
KTVN-TV Reno (Nevada)
The fifteen-minute pregame show, Dugout Interview. will air on all network stations and is available for local sale. It will be sponsored on KBHK by the Bay Area Buick Dealers. The postgame show will air on KBHK only and will be sponsored by Crescent Jewelers.
Pilots: Neither a station nor any sponsors had been signed at press time. Independent station KTNT-TV Tacoma-Seattle was the favorite to eventually acquire the rights. If a deal is done, KTNT is expected to televise approximately thirty road games. EDIT: Only one Pilots game ended up being televised, that being an August game in Detroit.
National TV/Radio Info
Originally written by garretta
Here's something I've forgotten to do long enough: the national outlook for 1969.
NBC's Game of the Week premieres on Saturday, April 12 at 3:15 PM Eastern, with the expansion San Diego Padres hosting the San Francisco Giants in the main game and the Cleveland Indians entertaining the Boston Red Sox in the backup game. Coverage continues every Saturday throughout the regular season, with first pitch coming at either 2:15 PM Eastern (if two Eastern or Central teams are hosting) or 4:15 PM Eastern (if a West Coast team is hosting). The exceptions are April 12 and May 31, when first pitch is scheduled for 3:15 PM Eastern. Curt Gowdy and Tony Kubek will call the primary games, while Jim Simpson and Sandy Koufax call the backup games, with some exceptions:
1. Mickey Mantle will join Gowdy and Kubek for three games: Cardinals-Dodgers on May 24, Tigers-Pilots on May 31, and Orioles-Twins August 2.
2. According to our research, Charlie Jones filled in for Jim Simpson three times, Orioles-Tigers on July 5 is confirmed; the other two occasions (Yankees-Twins August 23 and Pirates-Cubs September 6) have not been confirmed.
3. Don Drysdale will fill in for Koufax on Mets-Pirates September 13.
There was only one game (Reds-Expos) on May 10. That was the primary game; if anyone knows what the backup game was supposed to be, please let us know.
There will also be three Monday night telecasts, with first pitch scheduled for 8:15 PM. The dates will be June 2 (White Sox-Red Sox or Braves-Cardinals), August 11 (A's-Orioles or Mets-Astros) and September 1 (Cardinals-Astros, the backup game, turned into a standalone; does anyone know what the main game was supposed to be?)
NBC also has the rights to the All-Star Game, which after being rained out on July 22 was televised on Wednesday, July 23 from RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. First pitch is scheduled for 1:45 PM Eastern, with Gowdy, Kubek, and Mantle reporting. Simpson and Koufax will have the call for NBC Radio.
In addition to the World Series, NBC will televise the new best-of-five League Championship Series. The American League Championship Series will pit the Eastern Division champion Baltimore Orioles against the Western Division champion Minnesota Twins. The Orioles will host the first two games at Memorial Stadium; the Twins will host Game 3 at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington.
Game 1 from Baltimore is scheduled for Saturday, October 4, with first pitch at 1PM Eastern (Gowdy-Kubek). Game 2 will be on Sunday, October 5, wit first pitch pushed back to 2PM Eastern because of Maryland's Sunday blue laws. The game will not be televised because of NBC's commitment to AFL football. The series moves to Minnesota the next day (Monday, October 6). with first pitch at 2;30 PM Eastern. NBC will join the action in progress following Game 3 of the NLCS, with Simpson and Koufax on the call.
(Game time for Braves-Mets was 2:37, so the earliest NBC left Shea Stadium would have been between 3:40 and 3:45 PM Eastern. Our research has them changing over at the top of the 4PM Eastern hour, which makes sense if they went to the Mets clubhouse for interviews and the various presentations,)
The National League Championship Series will feature the New York Mets, champions of the Eastern Division, as they battle the Atlanta Braves, champions of the Western Division. Games 1 and 2 will take place at Atlanta Stadium, while Game 3 will take place at Shea Stadium.
First pitch for Game 1 on Saturday. October 4 is scheduled for 4PM Eastern. With Game 1 of the ALCS lasting three hours and twenty-nine minutes, it's likely that NBC joined the game in progress between 4:30 and 4:40 PM Eastern, with Simpson and Koufax on the call. First pitch for Game 2 on Sunday, October 6 is also scheduled for 4PM Eastern with Gowdy and Kubek. The AFL game between the New York Jets and the Boston Patriots, scheduled for a 1:30 PM Eastern kickoff, may have run over; there are no boxscores that indicate how long that game took to play.
Game 3 will take place on Monday, October 6 has a 1PM first pitch, with Gowdy and Kubek on the call.
In the World Series, the National League champion Mets will oppose the American League champion Orioles. The series will begin in Baltimore on Saturday, October 11 with first pitch scheduled for 1PM Eastern. Game 2 on Sunday, October 12 will begin at 2PM due to the blue laws. For these two games, Gowdy will be joined by Orioles broadcaster Bill O'Donnell in the booth. with Kubek acting as a field reporter. On radio, Simpson will be joined by Mets broadcaster Ralph Kiner.
The series moves to New York for Games 3 (Tuesday, October 14), 4 (Wednesday, October 15). and 5 (Thursday, October 16). First pitch for each game is at 1PM Eastern, With the Orioles now the road team, O'Donnell moves to radio alongside Simpson and Lindsey Nelson, voice of the Mets, joins Gowdy. Nelson also handled the trophy presentation in the Mets' locker room following Game 5. Simpson, Koufax, and Mantle hosted the pregame show. Flagship stations joining the NBC feed were WOR-TV New York (Mets) ang WJZ-TV Baltimore (Orioles).
For reasons unknown, there were no network radio broadcasts of the LCS between 1969 and 1975. In 1969, Robert Wold Radio syndicated broadcasts of both series. The ALCS was called by Buddy Blattner and Ernie Harwell, while the NLCS was called by Bob Prince and Gene Elston.
Some notes from the 1969 article:
Major League Baseball Promotion Corporation would like to produce a one-hour special to air the night before the All-Star Game (Monday, July 21) from 9PM to 10PM Eastern from the Sheraton Park Hotel in Washington. It's a show designed to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of organized baseball. Prior to the show, fans will be asked to vote for the greatest player at each position for their designated hometown teams. The votes will be sent to the Baseball Writers of America, who will then select the top ten players of all time (one at each position plus two pitchers). The honorees will be asked to attend the telecast.
The problem is, there may not be a telecast. NBC has already passed on the idea, and neither CBS nor ABC want to air a show that gives an NBC product free publicity, especially since Curt Gowdy and Joe Garagiola, both of NBC, are scheduled to host the event. There's at least one sponsor interested, but they won't commit until a network is named. That leaves two options: 1) A network set up by Sports Networks Inc. or 2) Offering the special to each affiliate of the various team television networks and hope that enough of them take if to form a decent network. There are around 150 stations around the country that carry local team telecasts; together. they cover about sixty percent of the country.
NBC has made a deal with both the French and English-speaking networks of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to carry both regular season games and the World Series. The French network will take a total of fifteen games, while the English will take one game a month on the last Saturday of the month.
NBC refuses to name any sponsors for this season's coverage, citing a "unique competitive situation" , but Broadcasting has learned that Schlitz and Chrysler will return as sponsors. The package could cover as many as forty-nine games if both LCS go five games and the World Series goes seven (neither of which happened) and if a one-game tiebreaker playoff is needed i each division. (There were no division title playoffs needed until 1978, by which time ABC owned part of the package and televised the Yankees-Red Sox AL East playoff from Boston.)
A total of 898 local radio stations and 146 local television stations will carry baseball games this year. The American League will be heard on more stations (538-360) but the National League will be seen on more stations (91-55).
For the first time ever, all backup games will be televised in color.
All twelve National League teams will receive a share of MLB's television money, but the expansion Kansas City Royals and Seattle Pilots of the American League will not. This is mostly because the owners in Kansas City and Seattle paid an expansion fee of $6 million as opposed to the $10 million paid by the owners of the expansion Montreal Expos and San Diego Padres of the National League.