Results tagged ‘ SportsTime Ohio ’
Sunday marks the first Indians Spring Training broadcast on television, and fans have wondered what’s in store after Fox Sports acquired SportsTime Ohio this past offseason.
And while there will be changes to the appearance on SportsTime Ohio, most everything else will remain the same, including the name SportsTime Ohio.
Also remaining the same are the on-air personalities that have marked Indians TV broadcasts for many years: Matt Underwood, Rick Manning, Al Pawlowski and Jason Stanford will return to their roles, while in-game reporter Katie Witham’s responsibilities will expand: She’ll travel with the team as well, and will be more closely connected to the dugout and clubhouse areas to bring viewers more real-time information as games progress.
Plus, “All Bets Are Off,” with Bruce Drennan, will return, as will “Chuck’s Last Call,” SportsTime Ohio’s late-night show that often appears directly after Indians games. On Opening Day, April 8, with first pitch set for 4:05, “All Bets Are Off” will air from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and a special one-hour pregame show will air on Sports Time Ohio at 3.
What will change is part of the station’s branding, which will be “Fox-ified.” The Fox shield, as shown in the above picture, is now included and a prominent part of the SportsTime Ohio logo. In addition, the “Fox Box” – the network’s in-game display of score, count and runners on base – will be featured in the upper-left-hand corner of the screen. Fox’s iconic theme music – best described as, “duh duh duh duh duh duh DUH, duh duh duh duh duh duh DUH!” – also will be incorporated to the broadcasts on SportsTime Ohio.
Fox Sports executives said last week that SportsTime Ohio will benefit from the backing of Fox’s national network and regional sports networks. For instance: If the Fox RSN in Minneapolis tries something new that works, Fox can implement in other local markets. Or, vice versa: Fox can try new things with SportsTime Ohio, and implement elsewhere.
SportsTime Ohio will carry six Spring Training games:
- Sunday, March 17, 4:05 ET
- Monday, March 18, 4:05 ET
- Thursday, March 21, 4:10 ET
- Friday, March 22, 10:05 ET
- Sunday, March 24, 4:05 ET
- Tuesday, March 26, 4:05 ET
The network also will carry 159 regular-season games.
–TribeVibe contributor Joel Hammond
SportsTime Ohio on-field reporter Katie Witham, a native of Alliance, OH, has an older brother and a younger sister. Witham recently took a break from her own reporting and sat down for an interview with TribeVibe.
TribeVibe: Are you married? Do you have a family?
Katie Witham: I got married last September 3, Labor Day weekend. I was back to work on Monday, right here. My husband, Richie, works with Nationwide Financial and is kind of all over. We’ve been together for 10 years.
TV: How did you meet?
KW: We were college sweethearts. We both played soccer in college [at] Capital University.
TV: What was it like playing soccer in college?
KW: It’s funny. I actually had the opportunity to play softball in school, and instead, I ended up going to Capital and playing soccer. I could have gone to [Kent State University] or Wright State to play softball. I was going to go as an outfielder.
I went to Capital, played soccer there. Our head coach was the coach of both the men’s and women’s teams. Our practices were ending when the other ones were beginning. That’s why I ended up meeting Richie on the field there. We dated all through school. Playing soccer there was fun. I was a defender. We had a really good team. We won the OAC my junior year and went into the tournament. We did a lot of growing up.
TV: What was your major at Capital?
KW: I double-majored in radio, television broadcasting and film and communications. I wanted to be a news anchor. Growing up, my mom had me involved in everything. I did sports, I did dance, and I did singing lessons. I grew up with Stefani Schaefer, and when she started working in the broadcasting industry, I was like, ‘That’s what I wanted to do.’ I knew my major and everything as a freshman. Everyone thought I was crazy [for knowing my major]. I interned in news a little bit, and the news business is very serious, kind of negative. I thought, ‘I can’t do this on a day-to-day basis.’
I was thinking of changing my major, when my head coach was like, ‘You should come out and intern with us at the Columbus Crew.’ My head coach at the time was also the play-by-play voice ever since they started in 1996. He got me in with an internship there, I ended up meeting our producer for the game, who decided to have me do halftime stuff as the intern. It just kind of developed into doing sideline stuff, in-game stuff. I was hooked. I didn’t realize at the time that I could go into broadcasting to do sports stuff. It wasn’t really popular yet. I was lucky; I kind of fell into it.
TV: How did you end up with SportsTime Ohio?
KW: I’m just a freelancer, in general, so I kind of work with everybody. I started working with STO back in 2008, doing high school football state championships and basketball state championships. Last year, I got a phone call — not too long before the season started — and they said, ‘Hey, did you want to do Indians games by chance?’ Last year was my first year. I couldn’t pass up that opportunity.
TV: Is baseball your favorite sport to watch?
KW: It definitely is now. I have to say that I am a soccer nut because I was just playing it in college and being around it. I worked with the Columbus Crew for seven years. I was eat, sleep, live soccer. I came to the Jake back in the day with my dad so many times. My older brother played baseball for a year at Wright State. I grew up around baseball, and I do love it very much. The last year and a half, it’s become my favorite.
TV: What is the best part of your job?
KW: The best part of my job is getting paid to come watch baseball games. Honestly, you can’t beat that. To call this work is hard to do. I’m fortunate because everyone that works at STO, they work incredibly hard, they put out a great product, yet they still know how to have fun and be lighthearted and not take things too seriously. It’s an amazing atmosphere.
Then — you know — being with this club, they’ve got a pretty good group of guys, and it’s been hard to call it work.
TV: Who is your favorite Indians player?
KW: I would have to say my favorite on the team since he’s come up is Jason Kipnis. He’s got the whole package. He’s an athletic guy, who will lay it out on the field, give you everything day in, day out. He does it at the plate, on the field. In the clubhouse, he’s got that personality that gravitates people towards him. He has that side where, if he had to be a leader and maybe lay into a couple of guys, he can do that, too. He’s my favorite because he’s fun to interview, fun to be around, and he’s fun to watch on the field, too.
TV: Do you have a most intimidating moment over the years?
KW: My first interview that I ever did. I was working for the Columbus Sports Network down in Columbus. My first actual interview, one-on-one, was with Arnold Schwarzenegger. I remember them going, ‘Don’t screw up, Witham. Don’t screw up.’ He was my first-ever interview. He was great. He was so down to earth, so nice. I was shocked at how short he was. That was crazy intimidating. That was probably the most nerve-wracking because it was my first and it was him. I remember watching him in The Terminator with my dad when I was younger.
TV: How much do you research prior to interviews?
KW: I do all the research by myself. Sometimes, if there’s a specific thing that happened in the game that our producers and our directors want to show the video of, they will tell me, ‘Hey, make sure at some point you get this question in. They want to hear about the diving stop that Jack Hannahan made.’ I write everything myself. I will take notes during the game of key moments and what I hear [Matt Underwood] and [Rick Manning] talking about. As far as prep work and everything, I make sure to do my homework before I come in. Just going over the previous day’s game, if there were any main storylines that came out, and just talking with guys like Jason Stanford and seeing what they’ve seen.
-Megan Golden, TribeVibe contributor
CLEVELAND INDIANS (5-4) at SEATTLE MARINERS (6-6)
RHP Derek Lowe (2-0, 1.98) vs. LHP Jason Vargas (1-1, 3.44)
First Pitch: 10:10 p.m. (ET) at Safeco Field
TV: SportsTime Ohio
Radio: WMMS, Indians Radio Network
* The Indians have won a season-high 4 straight games to improve to 4-0 on the road this year, matching Texas for the longest winning streak on the road this season (Rangers are also 4-0 entering their game tonight at Fenway Park against the Red Sox)…Cleveland also won 4 straight road games to begin the 2011 campaign…on the current 4-game streak, the club is batting .333 (53-159) with 21 extra-base hits (11-2B, 2-3B, 8-HR) and a .989 OPS (.410/.579)…the Indians enter tonight’s game looking to start a season 5-0 on the road for the first time since 1998 when the club won its first 6 games away from Cleveland.
* With last night’s 7-run rally in the 5th, the Cleveland offense has now posted at least one inning of 5+ runs in 4 consecutive games, the first such streak of its kind for the Indians since a 4-game streak from May 27-30, 1921.
* The Indians have now plated 8-or-more runs in each of their first 4 road games to start the year, the longest such season-opening streak in franchise history and longest in the majors since the New York Yankees pulled the trick in 4 straight to start the 2003 campaign…according to Matt Benson of STATS LLC, the last team to score 8-or-more runs in each of its first 5 road games to start the year was the 1896 Pittsburgh Pirates (6 straight)…that’s not a typo-o, we have a chance to do something tonight that hasn’t been done since Henry Ford invented the Quadricycle (see: “The Horseless Carriage”).
* Cleveland has homered in 9 straight games to begin the 2012 season, the longest such streak in the majors since the Texas Rangers homered in each of their first 10 games in 2009…the Indians’ current 9-game streak is tied for the 2nd-longest streak in Cleveland franchise history dating back to at least 1918, trailing only a 14-gamer to open the 2002 season…no easy feat to keep a streak like that going here at spacious Safeco Field.
CLEVELAND INDIANS (4-4) at SEATTLE MARINERS (6-5)
RHP Justin Masterson (0-1, 2.77) vs. RHP Kevin Millwood (0-0, 1.50)
First Pitch: 10:10 p.m. (ET) at Safeco Field
TV: SportsTime Ohio
Radio: WMMS, Indians Radio Network
Series Preview: The Indians are 201-158 (.560) all-time against the Seattle Mariners (1977-2012), good for the 3rd-highest winning percentage all-time among teams with at least 20 games played vs. Seattle behind Boston (.576, 215-158) and Oakland (.570, 294-222)…the Indians held a slight 5-4 edge in the 2011 series, but have lost 3 straight and 4 of the last 5 against the Mariners…the two clubs did not meet in Cactus League play this spring due to Seattle’s trip to Japan.
* Cleveland carries a .604 all-time winning percentage at Safeco Field entering this week’s series, going 32-21 since this venue originally opened in July of 1999…that .604 mark is the highest winning percentage by any visiting team with at least 10 games played here at Safeco…the Indians 32 wins are 6th-most all-time at Safeco, but trail only New York-AL (36-25) among non-AL West teams.
* The Indians have 15 total home runs thru 8 games this season, T2nd-most in the A.L. and the majors with St. Louis (10 games) and Texas (10 games), trailing only Baltimore, who has hit 18 home runs thru 10 games.
* The Indians’ 15 home runs are T2nd-most in club history through Cleveland’s first 8 games in a given season, most since swatting 15 thru the first 8 games of 1995…entering tonight, the club record for most home runs thru the first 9 games of a season is 18, accomplished in both 1959 and 1997.