Yankees and WPIX 11 — The Most Antiquated Partnership in Sports
This is the digital era. People are streaming everything and consuming television in ways that allow them to get everything they like and ignore what they don't. Being a prisoner to a cable company or their wasteful packages is no longer a thing. So why does the most valuable franchise in all of sports put 20-something games per year on a regional TV station?
WPIX -- WPIX! The station is still identified by its call letters. OK, they call it "PIX11," but let's get real.
When I ditched cable and found a streaming service that satisfied my sports needs, I said I'll never miss a Yankee game again. I asked for everything I thought I would need to never miss a regular or postseason game. I got YES, ESPN, FS1, FOX (National), TBS, TNT, EPSN 2, ESPN 12 and, of course, "The Ocho."
What I did not know when I made this switch a few years ago was that the Yankees were still doing business like it was 1987, and had games you can only get on WPIX. When I looked into it, I found that, indeed, I could add PIX 11 to my streaming service, but it would cost more money.
I'm not buying PIX 11 for two reasons: There is literally nothing else on that channel I would watch and it's a matter of principle. I have moved on from regional-ass TV for my sports and I am not going back.
I don't know why I am surprised that the Yankees would not make every one of their games available on big boy TV. After all, they let Michael Kay call their games on TV, they let Jon Sterling and Suzyn Waldman call their games on the radio, and they have the most boring "Pre" and "Post" game shows in all of sports.
Sometimes I watch or listen to Mets games just to see how real announcers actually call a game. This is what happens when an organization is too successful for too long -- they just can't see their zits. If the Yankees were a restaurant and I were a food critic, I'd give them 5 stars for taste and -4,323 stars for presentation.
Let's get all the games on grown up TV, with slick production. Let's have interesting people doing the accessory shows. Maybe put some people in the booth who are not ego maniacs (Kay), legally blind (Sterling) or making references from the 1920s (Waldman) that no one can understand.
P.S. David Cone, Paul O'Neill -- both great. Keep them, flush the rest, get rid of WPIX.
P.S. 2 - Loved WPIX back in the day. They had most of my Yankee games, Jack Cafferty at the news desk and Phil Rizzuto "Money Store" commercials.