Giants World Series Blu-ray Collector’s Edition Is A Must Have For Any Hardcore Baseball Fan

Courtesy:  MLB Productions/A&E Home Video/Lionsgate

Courtesy: MLB Productions/A&E Home Video/Lionsgate

Major League Baseball’s 2014 season is officially in the books.  The trophy’s been raised, the champagne poured, and all the gear is hung up for the year.  It means baseball fans have to wait another six months to hear the crack of the bat and all of the great smells of the ballpark again.  Meanwhile, the people at MLB Productions, Lionsgate, and A&E Home Video have made available for baseball fans everywhere a great way to get their baseball fix in the meantime.  They have partnered to release Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition.  This box set is a viable candidate for every sports writer and sportscaster’s best new releases this year.  The reasons for this are far more than any one person could ever discuss in a single setting.  So this critic will attempt to discuss at least some of the reasons that this box set is a win itself for baseball fans regardless of their team allegiance.  One reason that Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition is a win is the fact that it presents every single inning of every game from the 2014 World Series.  Within the context of each game, audiences can choose which inning to watch and whether to watch the top or bottom of said inning.  This is the norm from Major League Baseball Productions.  So it is especially nice to see that carried on in this box set.  Another reason that audiences will enjoy this box set is its companion booklet.  The companion booklet that comes with the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition offers a complete box score for each game.  It also includes little tidbits about each game including not only the hits, .ERAs, etc. but even the games’ attendance and temperature at first pitch.  It really is an in-depth companion for any hardcore baseball fan in the context of this set.  Last but hardly least important worth noting of the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition is its audio settings.  Audiences are not limited to just Fox’s broadcast team in following the game.  Fans can watch the game and listen to the game through the call of the Royals Radio Network and the Giants Radio Network.  That trio of choices is offered in every one of the World Series games, not just one.  Whether it be that choice of game audio, the set’s companion booklet, or the fact that all seven games are included in whole here, each factor plays its own important role in the success of the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition.  Together, they make this box set a must have for any hardcore baseball fan regardless of their team allegiance.

The first and most important reason for the success of the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition is the fact that presented in this set is the complete seven-game 2014 World Series between the San Francisco Giants and Kansas City Royals.  Not one game is left out.  It even includes as a bonus for baseball fans, Game 5 of the National League Championship Series between the Giants and Cardinals.  That was the game that boosted the Giants into the World Series.  As with each of the World Series’ seven games, that game is also presented in its entirety.  The fact that the series (and Game Five of the NLCS) is shown in its entirety is just the tip of the iceberg that makes the complete collection a bonus.  MLB Productions has maintained its tradition of allowing audiences to choose the inning at which they want to start here.  Not only that, but they can choose whether they want to start at the top or bottom of the given inning.  This, too is something that MLB Productions has made a standard with each of its previous releases.  So the fact that MLB Productions has continued that tradition here is a wonderful thing.  It isn’t all that makes the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition a success.  Audiences should also take into account the set’s companion booklet.

The companion booklet that comes with the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition is a perfect addition to the box set.  It includes a complete, in-depth box score for each game.  It doesn’t just give the standard score information such as .ERAs, runs, hits, etc.  It also includes extra tidbits such as the game-time temperature at the time of each game’s first pitch, attendance at each game, and even specific details about certain players from both sides of the ball.  It’s like having a full series program for those that could only take in the game from their living rooms and bedrooms.  The fact that the people at MLB Productions would include this with the box set once again (it’s not the first time that MLB Productions has done this either) makes the box even more of a win.

The complete presentation of all seven games from the 2014 World Series is a key factor to the success of the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition.  The set’s in-depth companion booklet makes the experience all the richer for baseball fans.  That is because of the amount of information that is shared throughout the companion booklet.  It is like having a program for those that couldn’t be at any of the games.  The last factor that makes this box set a success is the trio of audio options for each game.  Audiences are not relegated to listening only to Fox’s broadcast team.  They are given the option of listening to the game through the call of the Royals Radio Network and the Giants Network.  There are those people who actually admit to turning off a game’s audio on television and taking in the game through the call of their local radio affiliate.  Now audiences can do just that without even having to turn on a radio.  Again whether one is loyal to the Royals or Giants, audiences can experience the call of each game through the network of their choice.  Even more impressive is that audiences can even switch between the two radio networks or Fox’s broadcast team throughout each game.  They are not forced to listen to just one broadcast audio option within any game.  That is a huge win for audiences even if they are not loyal to the Royals or Giants.  That factor rounds out the entire box set and proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that this box set is a must have for every sports writer and sports caster around the country.  It is just as much of a must have for any hardcore baseball fan regardless of team allegiance.

The full seven-game presentation of the Giants 2014 World Series Collector’s Edition and its in-depth companion booklet more than make this Blu-ray box set a must have for any lover of America’s past-time.  The fact that audiences can choose the inning and half of said inning at which they start viewing makes the box set even more of a hit.  The multi-functional  audio options offered to audiences throughout the course of those seven-games makes the box set a grand slam (bad pun fully intended).  It is available now and can be ordered online direct from MLB Productions’ website at http://shop.mlb.com/product/index.jsp?productId=51967736.  More information on this and other releases from MLB Productions is available online at:

Website: http://mlbproductions.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mlbprod

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Yankees Fans And Baseball Fans Alike Will Enjoy MLB Productions’ Latest Release

Courtesy:  Lionsgate/MLB Productions/A&E/A&E Home Video

Courtesy: Lionsgate/MLB Productions/A&E/A&E Home Video

The New York Yankees are in the waning days of the team’s 2014 season.  And along with the end of that season is the end of an era as Yankees great Derek Jeter is set to close out his Major League Baseball career, too.  While this season has not exactly proven to be everything that Yankees loyalists had hoped for MLB Productions has given Yankees nation reason to look back after this season’s end and still have plenty to smile about thanks to the recent release of Baseball’s Greatest Games: New York Yankees® Postseason Heroics.  This latest release continues a long-held tradition of excellence from Major League Baseball Productions as is evidenced throughout all four games contained in this set.  The inclusion of four full games is central to the enjoyment of the presentation.  That each game celebrates Jeter’s various accomplishments makes things even sweeter for fans.  As with previous MLB Productions releases, audiences are given the option to start at the top or bottom of any of the games’ innings.  They are not forced to sit through the whole game or even fast forward through to their key moments.  It adds even more enjoyment to the overall presentation.  And last but not least of all worth noting in this set is the collective video and audio mix in each episode.  MLB productions includes a disclaimer before the game, noting that there may be some discrepancies at given points.  But those discrepancies are few and far between.  If anything, seeing the games as they were originally broadcast adds to a certain sense of nostalgia among viewers, whether or not they be Yankees loyalists.  Each factor noted by itself is important to the whole in its own right.  All three together make Baseball’s Greatest Games: New York Yankees® Postseason Heroics another welcome addition to the library of any Yankees loyalist and any true-blooded MLB fan Yankees loyalist or not.

Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics is a welcome addition to the library of any Yankees loyalist and any true-blooded MLB fan Yankees loyalist or not.  It is especially welcome being that New York’s season hasn’t exactly lived up to the hopes and expectations of the team or its fans.  Luckily for fans, this four-disc set features four past Yankees games on which fans can look back and smile after the season’s end.  The first of the games is Game 1 of the 1996 ALCS in which the Yankees faced off against the Baltimore Orioles.  The second game takes fans forward four years to Game 4 of the 2000 World Series.  The Yankees faced off against the Mets that year.  The key moment of this game was Jeter’s leadoff home run against the Mets.  The third game takes audiences another year forward to Game 3 of the 2001 ALDS.  That year, the Yankees faced off against Oakland.  After taking down Oakland, the Yankees moved on in 2001 to the World Series, in which the team took on Arizona for the championship. MLB Productions features Game 4 of that year’s World Series as the set’s closing game.  As with the set’s other games, Jeter’s accomplishments are highlighted here, too.  Of course it doesn’t focus solely on his achievements.  Rather, the entire game is presented from the first pitch to the last.  The commercials have been cleanly cut, again displaying that commitment to quality from MLB Productions.  Simply put, with each game, audiences get the full game experience sans the commercial limitations.  They can pause the game at any point that they choose so as to use the bathroom, get a couple cold ones, or anything else.  All things considered here, it all proves just why the inclusion of the games and their inclusion in full at that is the central point of the set’s success.

The inclusion of four important recent Yankees games is central to the success of Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics is central to the success of the set.  Their inclusion in full and the fact that they are meant to highlight the accomplishments of the soon-to-be-retired Yankee great Derek Jeter makes it even more of a solid center to the set.  Adding to the set’s success is the fact that once again, audiences are able to choose the inning at which they start each game.  To be even more precise, audiences can choose whether they start at the top of an inning within a given game or at the top of said inning.  So rather than be forced to sit through the whole game or fast forward through so much baseball, audiences can pick precisely where the game starts.  So if viewers have to stop for any reason, they can just pop in the DVD, pick the inning (and its top or bottom) and go from there.  If fast forwarding is still necessary, it won’t have to be but so much as a result of this inclusion.  This is a standard that those at MLB Productions have maintained for years.  So it is wonderful to see this standard maintained even here.  It serves to make the set’s overall presentation even more enjoyable and a success.

MLB fans and Yankees fans alike will appreciate that those with MLB Productions took painstaking efforts to maintain the tradition of excellence established by the company with every one of its releases up to this point including this set.  The games included in this set are presented in full. Audiences can once again choose the point at which they start giving games, whether the top or bottom of said inning(s).  All of this taken into consideration, Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics proves to offer plenty of enjoyment for MLB fans regardless of their team loyalty.  There is still one more aspect of this set that makes it a joy for audiences.  That last aspect is the fact that the games in this set are presented exactly as they were seen in their original broadcast(s).  Game 1 of the team’s 1996 ALCS matchup against the Orioles was originally broadcast on NBC while the other three games were each broadcast on FOX.  MLB Productions’ people covered their bases, including a disclaimer noting the potential issues with the games’ video.  But the reality is the video looks just fine.  As a matter of fact, seeing the games as they looked in their original airings brings back a wonderful sense of nostalgia for fans. Considering that this season hasn’t lived to the hopes and expectations of the team and its fans, that sense of nostalgia is especially welcome for the members of the Yankees nation.  Together with the aforementioned aspects of the set, the presentation of each game from its original broadcast rounds out Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics and makes it complete.  It is one more reason that audiences, regardless of allegiance, will welcome this latest collection of games from MLB Productions and A&E Home Video.

MLB Productions and A&E Home Video have a long history together, releasing wonderful pieces of baseball’s history every year.  Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics is one more wonderful piece of that history.  The inclusion of four games in their entirety proves that right off the top.  That audiences can once more choose where they start viewing each game makes it even more of an enjoyable experience.  And the still quality video and audio mix of all four games rounds out the entire set.  All things considered, Baseball’s Greatest Games: Yankees® Postseason Heroics proves to be its own home run for any Yankees loyalist and any true-blooded baseball fan in general.  It is available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct from The Lionsgate online store at http://www.lionsgateshop.com/product.asp?Id=31220&TitleParentId=9945.  More information on this and other releases from Lionsgate and A&E Home Video is available online at:

 

Lionsgate

Website: http://www.lionsgate.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lionsgate
Twitter: http://twitter.com/linosgatemovies

A&E Home Video

Website: http://www.aetv.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AETV
Twitter: http://twitter.com/AEHomeEnt

MLB Productions

Website: http://mlbproductions.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/mlbprod

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San Francisco Hosts Los Angeles This Weekend On ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

The MLB divisional races are starting to heat up now that the annual MLB All-Star Game has come and gone and the cutoff for the playoffs is only weeks away. And one of the hottest of those divisional races is the race for the NL West. This weekend, the San Francisco Giants play host to the L.A. Dodgers in a three-game series beginning Friday, July 25th that will see the two teams fight it out for the divisional lead. Saturday’s game, the second in the series between the teams, will be available on ESPN Radio. Jon Sciambi will have the call. He will be joined by analyst Chris Singleton.

The third game in this weekend’s series between the Dodgers and Giants will be broadcast live this Sunday, July 28th on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell. The Giants currently lead the Dodgers by a game and a half in the NL West standings.  Dan Shulman will have the call for Sunday night’s game. He will be joined in the booth by analyst Jon Kruk and reporter Buster Olney for commentary. Coverage of Sunday night’s game is scheduled to begin at 8pm ET.

Before either team takes to the field, and the first pitch is thrown, ESPN’s Baseball Tonight: Sunday Night Countdown presented by Chevrolet will highlight all of the game’s major storylines. Host Adnan Virk and analyst Aaron Boone will discuss those storylines and all of the latest MLB news beginning at 7pm ET.

Audiences that want that can’t be near a TV for Sunday night’s matchup can catch every pitch and hit on ESPN Radio with host Jon Sciambi and Chris Singleton. It will also be available on ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio.

Jose Bautista and the Toronto Blue Jays will be on the road against the Big Papi—David Ortiz—and the Boston Red Sox next Monday, July 28th on ESPN’s Monday Night Baseball presented by USAA. Coverage of that game is scheduled to begin at 7pm ET with Dave O’Brien, Aaron Boone, and reporter Tim Kurkjian providing commentary.

All of the latest MLB news and more is available online at http://espn.go.com/mlb and http://www.facebook.com/ESPNBaseballTonight. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Dodgers Host Bosox August 25th On ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball Presented By Taco Bell

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced the latest addition to its lineup of games on its weekly Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell broadcast.  Coming up Sunday, August 25th, Hanley Ramirez and the Los Angeles Dodgers will host Dustin Pedroia and the Boston Red Sox as the race to the playoffs heats up.  The game is scheduled to air live at 8pm ET on ESPN.  Dan Shulman will anchor the broadcast.  He will be joined by former Dodgers great and ESPN analyst Orel Hershiser, fellow analyst John Kruk and reporter Buster Olney.

Along with its broadcast on ESPN, the matchup will also be available on ESPN Radio affiliates nationwide and online via WatchESPN.  Jon Sciambi will anchor the broadcast for ESPN Radio.  He will be joined by analyst Chris Singleton.  Spanish speaking audiences can catch the game on ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio.  Ernesto Jerez, Luis Alfredo Alvarez, Guillermo Celis, and Ozzie Guillen will have the call for both networks.

The East Coast/West Coast rivalry is just one more rivalry on the Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell schedule.  Coming up this Sunday, August 4th, the Phillies will take on the Atlanta Braves in a modern day battle of North vs. South on the baseball diamond.  The current schedule of games on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is available below.

Upcoming Sunday Night Baseball schedule:

Date Game
Aug 4 Atlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies
Aug 11 Tampa Bay Rays at Los Angeles Dodgers
Aug 18 New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox
Aug 25 Boston Red Sox at Los Angeles Dodgers

Upcoming games for the September broadcast schedule will be announced two weeks in advance to the games.  Sunday Night Baseball presented by Taco Bell is preceded every Sunday night by Baseball Tonight live at 7pm ET.

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MLB’s World Series Retrospective Is One More Grand Slam For Baseball Fans

Courtesy: MLB Productions/A&E Home Video

The 2012 Major League Baseball season is all but wrapped up.  The Tigers are waiting to see if they’ll face either the Orioles or the Yankees in the ALCS, while the Giants are now waiting to see if they’ll be facing either the Nationals or the Cardinals after Cincinnati’s epic three game collapse.  Both the ALCS and the NLCS kick into high gear this weekend.  Both Best-of-Seven series will take their teams deep into October.  And eventually only two will remain to square off in the Fall Classic, the World Series.  In celebration of the yearly Championship match, MLB Productions and A&E Home have released a retrospective of the Fall Classic. 

The World Series:  History of The Fall Classic has been released in both a double and quadruple disc set.  Both sets present a full in depth history of baseball’s crown jewel from its beginnings in 1903 right up to the Cardinals’ win over the Texas Rangers.  The presentation is narrated by NBC’s Bob Costas.  Costas has a proven track record as a sports broadcaster.  And his experience as a broadcaster shows through here in every minute of the documentary.  His totally professional narrative style will keep any baseball fan’s attention.  And the archived footage from throughout the series’ near one hundred and ten year history adds even more amazement to this set.  It’s incredible that nearly century old footage has survived so long.  Little, if any, is left out in this set.  Even included here is the first time that the World Series went to a Game Seven.  Honus Wagner and the Pirates faced off against Ty Cobb and the Chicago Cubs.  Talk about baseball history.  Hearing the story from former players and seeing the pictures brings it all together.  This is just one example of what audiences have to look forward to with the set.

The stories of the Series are just the tip of the iceberg with this grand slam of a sports set.  Fans that pick up the four-disc set are also treated to a load of bonus features, including loads of media bloopers from the likes of Costas himself, Bryant Gumble, and so many others.  The bloopers are taken from the reporters’ own foibles, and even from moments shared with teams in their clubhouses.  There are also highlights of some of the World Series’ best clinchers, and some of the most famous first pitches ever thrown in the history of the World Series.  Again, this is just a tiny part of what this box set has to offer.  It doesn’t matter for which team a fan roots, after going through all four discs of this set, any baseball fan will be left singing “Take Me Out To the Ballgame” all winter long and counting the days for that first pitch of spring all over again.

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A&E, MLB Productions hit a home run with new blu-ray/dvd set

Baseball season is back in the air.  Can you feel it?  The weather’s getting warmer and baseball parks nationwide are coming back to life.  The TV networks are running pre-season games and opening day promos seemingly every other day.  And as an added measure to get baseball fans in a gametime mind, A&E  and Major League Baseball Productions are relasing the newest piece of baeball history to the masses.  The pair will release “Baseball’s Greatest Games:  2011 World Series Game 6″ on April 17th.

Every baseball fan remembers the St. Louis Cardinals meteoric rise from the depths of the baseball basement last year to take the World Series Championhip.  The Redbirds trailed ten and a half games out of the Wild Card race last season when the team suddenly surged and made its way into the playoffs, and eventually the hearts of nearly every sports and baseball fan across the country.  The Cards eventually made it to the World Series.  And it was Game Six that really defined last year’s MLB Championship series.  Now, fans will get to relive the entire Game Six experience whenever they want with the release of the entire game on a special blu-ray/dvd package.

The entire Game Six of the 2011 series is presented here on both discs, exactly as it appeared last year on Fox.  It’s shown in its entirety without the worry of having to sit through commercial breaks, too.  Though the commercial break moments are there.  This especially allows fans to re-live the game at their leisure.  Viewers can get together and have a party any time during the season, re-living this magical moment as they want.  All in all, it’s one of those moments that reminds fans that even despite the black eyes that baseball has endured, it’s still one of the nation’s greatest sports.

The game’s full on, no frills presentation is only part of what makes this new release so impressive.  Another bonus to the package is that it includes the whole game both in standard def dvd and blu-ray.  Doing this allows audiences to watch the game in its entirety whether they own a blu-ray player or not.  Even viewers with both a dvd player and blu-ray player can watch the game anywhere thanks to the inclusion of both formats in this set.  There’s no denying though, the clarity of the game on an HDTV with blu-ray player.  Although most blu-ray players can automatically upconvert standard def dvd’s.  So again, kudos to A&E and MLB Productions for going to such lengths for baseball fans.

The pair is also to be commended for placing the full 9-inning score summary on the back of the set’s box.  The rundown shows the intense back and forth battle of these “boys of summer.”  Even before watching the game, it reminds audiences of the importance of this series changing showdown.  That anticipation alone is enough to get any sports nut’s adrenaline pumping.  Add in the full Game Six experience in two formats, and audiences get a great reminder of last season’s closing moments all while getting set for a whole new exciting 2012 MLB season.