Major League Baseball’s new Wild Card round steps to the plate today and TBS will take the first telecast cuts.
TBS will air the National League Wild Card game featuring the defending World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals visiting the Atlanta Braves -- in what could be future Hall of Famer Chipper Jones' last ballgame -- at 5 p.m. (ET) on Oct. 5. The winner advances to the Division Series against the Washington Nationals.
In the American League, the Baltimore Orioles will visit the Texas Rangers in Arlington at 8:30 p.m. (ET), with the victor moving on against the New York Yankees.
Play-by-play man Brian Anderson will be joined by Ron Darling and Joe Simpson on the National League telecast, while Ernie Johnson and John Smoltz will welcome Hall of Famer Cal Ripken to booth for his first swing as a studio analyst on the junior circuit contest.
Those three-man crews will be calling two of the four Division Series that also will air exclusively on TBS – Anderson, Darling and Simpson will track the San Francisco-Cincinnati matchup, while Johnson, Smoltz and Ripken will cover the Yankees versus the Rangers/O’s winner.
Dick Stockton and analyst Bob Brenly will pair on the Nationals/Cards-Braves survivor, while play-by-play man Don Orsillo and Buck Martinez will cover Oakland/Detroit.
In addition to the initial Wild Card action and Ripken’s rookie moment as game analyst, TBS will enhance its postseason telecasts, which will also include the American League Championship Series, with the following technology:
*3D Hologram Imagery: 3D imagery will illustrate detailed examples of pitch grips, while demonstrating the pressure points, release points and rotation. Analysts will use the tool to explain how pitches work and how the hitter approaches each type of pitch.
*Super Slo-Mo: TBS will triple the amount of Super Slow-Motion cameras utilized throughout its postseason coverage.
*Bloomberg Stats: TBS will once again utilize Bloomberg Sports’ resources by integrating comprehensive statistical information into each telecast. The service allows game and studio analysts to examine every pitch of each game to find patterns and pick out tendencies.
*Pitch Trax: The in-game technology, which illustrates pitch location throughout the game, will return to TBS for the postseason.