There’s not a ton of actual news this morning, so let’s talk broadcasting:
As the game ended last night, I said to myself “hmm, I just watched over three hours of a FOX broadcast, and I’m not annoyed.” I was able to mostly ignore Buck, and, in an unlikely twist, McCarver didn’t say too terribly much to angry up my blood. Maybe more important, it didn’t seem to me like they were constantly cutting to crowd shots like they have in the past (one of my biggest pet peeves). I may have missed some giant gaffe when I put my daughter to bed or went for a beer or something, but on the whole, it was a good broadcast.
There are at least three more opportunities for FOX to remember all of the reasons we hate having to watch postseason baseball on their network, but until they do, I’m going to give them preliminary credit for maybe finally learning a few lessons.
Update (8:40 PM ET): Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Hunter’s contract with the Phillies is for two years.
There’s been a bit of confusion at the Winter Meetings. First, ESPN’s Buster Olney reported that the Phillies were close to signing free agent reliever Addison Reed. That report was then disputed by Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports. Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer then reported that not only do the Phillies not have a deal with Reed, they’re actually moving in on a deal with free agent pitcher Tommy Hunter. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic backed up Gelb’s report, as did Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
Hunter, 31, spent the past season with the Rays, posting a 2.61 ERA with a 64/14 K/BB ratio across 58 2/3 innings. The right-hander, a veteran of 10 seasons in the majors, should be a good addition to the Phillies’ bullpen, which also recently added Pat Neshek. Neshek and Hunter will likely work the innings just ahead of closer Hector Neris.
As for Reed, well, who knows.