Opening Day in LA: ESPN Giveth, ESPN Taketh Away

For all of you Los Angeles baseball fans with weekday (or at least opening day) television privileges, you saw ESPN begin the day by showing us the fabulous Toronto Blue Jays win over the yankees. Then, at 1:00, with no access to SportsNet LA, hundreds of thousands of Dodgers’ fans joined all of the areas’ Angels’ fans by watching the Angels’ broadcast, and were disheartened to see a Seattle victory, despite both a home run and a fabulous defensive play from reigning American League MVP, Mike Trout. Then, after that, it was back to ESPN to see what other game was on, and instead we were shown a few minutes of between game Baseball Tonight banter, but then, out of the blue, they said, for a while, until the next game, “on to Dodgers’ Stadium” and we heard the voice of Vin Scully and saw the Dodgers’ broadcast on an actual TV screen.

Having been following the game on various 21st century media and app devices (but of course, not television) I knew that the game was tied 3-3 in the bottom of the eighth inning, with the Padres, or rather with Matt Kemp, having gotten to Clayton Kershaw for three runs. Kemp singled in one and doubled in two, in the first game of his MVP season. The Dodgers tied the game in the seventh, and as the broadcast began for us in SoCal, Joc Pederson had just walked and A.J.
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Ellis came to the plate. Ellis popped up a bunt attempt, but then pinch hitter Andre Ethier was safe on a error, and Jimmy Rollins walked up to the plate.

Disaster then struck, as ESPN tooketh away. Their next regularly scheduled game, Cleveland at Houston, was beginning, and Vin’s voice was silenced, as some unknown technician pushed some innocuous button, and the unwanted Indians v Astros game was now blaring from the TV. As bad as that was, it became even more maddening when after I furiously grasped for any of those 21st century media thingamajigs, and then learned that what happened literally seconds after ESPN turned off the Dodgers, and what I and hundreds of thousands of others missed, was that Jimmy Rollins hit a three run home run. After that, interim closer Chris Hatcher pitched an uneventful top of the ninth, and the Dodgers had an opening day win over the far superior Padres, 6-3.

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