FOX SPORTS TO CARRY RAMIREZ’ FIRST AT-BAT LIVE NATIONALLY ON SATURDAY
While his first major league at-bats after serving a 50 game suspension for violating MLB’s drug policy are likely to come Friday night when the Dodgers visit the division rival Padres at Petco Park, FOX Sports plans to carry Manny Ramirez’ first at-bat on Saturday, live to a national television audience. MLB on FOX will briefly bring viewers of its two other regional broadcasts – Mets at Phillies and Tigers at Twins – to the top of the first inning of Dodgers-Padres game as Ramirez steps to the plate for the first time.
“Being the personality that he is, there will definitely be a curiosity factor as Manny Ramirez returns from suspension,” said FOX Sports president Ed Goren. “We think many baseball fans will be interested to see how he’s received by the fans in San Diego. It could forecast how fans will react in other National League parks the Dodgers visit the rest of this season.”
The FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK airs Saturday, July 4 at 4:00 PM ET. Dick Stockton and Eric Karros call the Dodgers-Padres contest, with Ken Rosenthal serving as field reporter. Chris Rose hosts the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL pregame show from Petco before joining the crew to report on the Dodgers-Padres game.
Karros, who spent 12 of his 14 major league season with the Dodgers is clearly conflicted by Ramirez’ return. “On Friday I’m going to the game and looking forward to watching him hit again and seeing the energy as he is back in the line-up,” he said. “On Saturday, as I work in the booth as a former player, I’m disappointed. His action perpetuates the myth that every player in the 90’s and early 2000’s cheated. It adds fuel to guilty until proven innocent.”
Kenny Albert and Tim McCarver call Mets-Phillies, while Dick Bremer and Mark Grace call Tigers-Twins. For first hand reactions and observations on Saturdays and during the week, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MLBONFOX.