The Orioles have played 17 of the 28 games on their spring training schedule. It is at this point that MASN, the television network that is majority-owned by the Orioles, has finally decided to announce that it will carry televise two of the remaining spring training games.
A MASN announcement on Thursday afternoon said the network will broadcast the March 23 game against the Rays (1:05) and the March 25 game against the Pirates (6:05). These games had already been scheduled for Orioles radio broadcasts, so they do not cover any gaps of the remaining games that have no broadcast scheduled.
Many other teams have broadcast several of their spring training games already. The Pirates, no one’s idea of a team flush with cash, had at least some kind of audio broadcast of almost every game. The Orioles TV and radio broadcast networks, for whatever reason, could not be bothered to do this. The belated two-game TV announcement should be embarrassing for everyone involved. Nearly every other network and team figured it out long before now.
There are O’s broadcasts for seven of the final nine exhibition games, including six in a row from March 23-28. The two MASN broadcasts have slipped into that stretch. It will be nice to hear announcers whose job it is to talk about the Orioles actually call these games, instead of listening to other teams crews who don’t know much or anything about the younger Orioles players who’ve been getting playing time in spring training.
Spring training 2021 was a disappointing step back from the last full spring training in 2019, when the Orioles had half a dozen games on television, nearly half of the games on the radio, and almost every game that wasn’t on the radio had an online-only audio broadcast. I hope this year’s lack of broadcasts are not the new normal.