ESPN is Burning

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I was tuning into ESPN the other night to catch the first part of the 8 hour miniseries about the Yankees 1977 season “The Bronx is Burning”. I know I ranked on the New York Post recently for running boxscores and game recaps of ’77 Yankees games but this series looked like it may be good and featured actors playing three of the great baseball personalities of the time, George Steinbrenner, Billy Martin and Reggie Jackson. The show was scheduled to follow the Home Run Derby so I tuned in a few minutes early to see some of that. When I realized how far along they were in the derby (or, more appropriately, how much more they had to go) I took a quick look at the clock, turned off the TV and went to sleep. There was no way this show was going to air anywhere near it’s scheduled start time.

I realize that ESPN scheduled the show after the derby to try to cash in on one of their largest audiences of the year. It’s the same strategy networks use when scheduling programming after the Super Bowl. But there was no way I was going to stay up to watch this show at it’s eventual start time (11:05).

The opening episode of “The Bronx is Burning” is scheduled to be replayed tonight at 10 but odds are that I won’t be able to watch it which means that I won’t watch the following seven parts either. I’m sure I’m not the only one. In my case it’s because I won’t likely have the opportunity to set my DVR to record it for me between now and then (I just read about the replay this morning and I’m already on my way to work). ESPN spent a lot of money on this series between making it and promoting it. I don’t recall seeing any promos saying anything about a replay date but that would have been wise considering they had to know from years past that there was no way this show would air on time. Instead they have probably lost me and many others like me as viewers. Great work, ESPN.

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