So this is what a winning streak looks like: Suddenly, the Chicago Cubs (shown here with Kris Bryant) get a spot on ABC … the first in decades.
And the streak is only one game, following a dizzying, 11-game losing streak. Turnarounds are great.
Usually, ESPN carries the Sunday-night basetball games. At 7 p.m. ET on Aug. 8, however, the Cubs-White Sox game will be produced by ESPN, but will air on its sister channel, ABC.
ABC did carry a wild-card game last year, but that was its first post-season game in 25 years.
This comes as TV retreats to its earliest days, when any competition seemed worthy. Each week in 1948, primetime viewers could find five nights of boxing and four each of wrestling and basketball.
All of that faded when networks looked for bigger audiences … then returned when people discovered delayed-viewing. Sports events, rarely seen on delay, perked up: Fox added Friday wrestling, Saturday baseball and lots of football; now ABC steps in.
The game will be an ESPN production, with Matt Vasgersian and Alex Rodriguez in the booth and Buster Olney in the stands.
Cubs-White Sox games tend to do great business (especially in Chicago), but there’s one problem: The Sox are in first place in their division, but the Cubs’ long losing streak left them 8-and-a-half games out, with speculation of trading the stars who are in the final year of their contracts.
That streak was finally broken with a win Monday and ABC promptly announced the telecast, featuring “the Chicago Cubs and Kris Bryant.” The next question is whether Bryant will still be there in August.