ROOT passes the buck on Bucs
Fans sweating out the Pirates' 5-3 win over the Cardinals on ROOT Sports Saturday had to listen to the radio or watch the Penguins telecast to learn how the game turned out.
With two out, two on and the Pirates leading, 5-2, in the top of the ninth inning in St. Louis, ROOT cut away to show the Penguins' game against Carolina at Consol Energy Center in its entirety.
The Pirates' Pedro Alvarez was batting with a 1-1 count when play-by-play man Greg Brown informed the viewers, “As the Pirates and Cardinals continue to play, we are going to send you to Pittsburgh as the Penguins tune up for the playoffs and host the Carolina Hurricanes in their last regular-season game. We will continue to update you on the Pirates throughout the Penguins game.”
ROOT then switched to Rob King in the studio, who said, “If there are any key highlights, key plays, the winning moment, we will bring that to you during the course of tonight's Pens game.” He also also noted that the Pirates score would be shown in the upper right corner of the screen.
During the Penguins game, ROOT showed replays of Carlos Beltran's run-scoring double in the bottom of the ninth that made it 5-3, and Matt Holliday, who represented the tying run, grounding out to end the game.
Shawn McClintock, ROOT Sports executive vice-president and general manager, did not return phone or e-mail messages. Brian Warecki, the Pirates' senior director of communications, said in an e-mail, “The Pirates, Pens and ROOT Sports have worked together towards the common goal of bringing as much Pirates and Pens coverage to the fans as possible. All parties discussed the options, determined the coverage plans given many different game scenarios and agreed to those plans well in advance.”