Buck goes through various stages of grieving after hearing of his 25th place finish in FanGraphs crowdsourced broadcaster rankings, while Pat, as always, looks about as sharp as a bag of wet hair (though not Buck’s hair, which I assume must never get wet).

FanGraphs released the bottom third of the broadcaster rankings they began crowdsourcing for back in November, and– lo and behold!– the Jays TV combo of Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler slot in at number 25.

Interestingly, they were the most voted-on broadcast team in the Majors, by an evil margin– something I’m going to totally attribute to the DJF bump– with 414 ballots cast, while the next-highest was the Dodgers, with 322.

Perhaps more interestingly, Carson Cistuli’s analysis of the reader input pretty much nailed it. “It seems, generally, that Toronto fans much prefer the radio broadcast of Ashby and Howarth — and regard Martinez as probably a slightly above-average color (or, uh, colour) man doing play-by-play work,” he writes. Um… bingo.

The pair received 2.8 out of five, overall, with a 2.7 for analysis and a 2.8 for charisma. They beat the Phillies, Braves, Rockies, Cardinals, and Dodgers (away, non-Scully) teams– and, of course, the insufferable White Sox crew.

Images via the Blue Jay Hunter

Comments (67)

  1. Um, if these guys are ranked 25th, what would Jamie and Rance Mullinicks/Tabler have gotten?

    They’re outdated, but I actually think Buck/Tabler are fine.  Jerry/Alan – top notch.

  2. I’m not a Jays fan, but FAR prefer the radio crew to the TV guys.  Light year’s better.

    • my daughter attended tonites game but I couldnt stand watching it on TV because of Bucks commentary He is just awful.No wonder he wasnt a good manager

  3. Buck isn’t the worst person i’ve heard call a game, that would be Hawk Harrelson, But my fuck do I hate Pat Tabler as the colour guy. It’s so so much better when Ashby does the game.

  4. I don’t hate Buck/Tabler either. There’s certainly better, but they’ve never detracted from my enjoyment of a game.

  5. If it were possible to accurately sync up the Howarth/Ashby broadcast with the TV images, that would be ideal. It’s too bad they’re a few seconds off each other.

  6. do you watch it with the sound on?

  7. It’s possible, you just need to buy a device to do it. We got our hands on a Delay Play Radio back in the bad old Jamie Campbell days.


  8. How Hawk Harrelson managed to escape the bottom 10 is one of life’s great mysteries.

  9. I have to agree, all the games that Ashby called last year were very well done.  He actually calls the game, and leaves most of the bullshit stories where they belong.

  10. plus rob and todd there seem to dress the same all the time.. and it wiggs me out a bit.

  11. *rod*

  12. Buck was hilarious last year because I guess he got notes about how he used to think every ball hit to the outfield was going out so he’d be getting excited about routine fly balls, so he stopped being excited about everything, giving us the blandest home run calls ever.

  13. Because the Dodgers games are split between Scully (home) and an away crew, there are 31 rankings. Hawk was 31st– they posted it yesterday.

  14.  Ah. Order is restored in my universe.

  15. If I had the option, I’d also listen to the radio play-by-play instead of the TV audio. I’d love it if Ashby became the full-time TV analyst.

    That said, I don’t mind the current TV duo. I’ve actually enjoyed listening to Buck doing the play-by-play. Despite the fact that Tabler rarely says anything insightful, he’s someone I can mentally tune out. As long as they don’t irritate me by saying stuff that’s complete nonsense, I’m not going to complain too much.

  16.  He didn’t. He was ranked dead last or 31st yesterday, in a bracket all his own. They announced last place before they released the bottom 10 today.

  17. Sweet! Thanks for the link. Buck is awful and Tabler is worse.
    The radio guys are way better (excluding Wilner obviously).

    One thing I am really hoping for this year is for the Jays to be on Sunday Night Baseball so I can listen to the best (Shulman) call a game. There are a number of Sundays on ESPN’s schedule which are left open:


    So many potential games for the Jays to be featured (vs. Sox, Yanks, Phills, Canada Day vs. Angels), we gotta get at least one…

  18. the worst is going to be the 27 insufferable games that wilner is on this year. ugh.

    really, all sports would be better off without announcers/colour guys at all… all we need is an accurate stat display and more in-game sounds. that’d be my dream.

  19. Always loved Jerry and Tom Cheek (RIP). My dad had a system: When it wasn’t Dan and Buck on TSN (echoing the statements above about Shulman’s awesomeness and Buck’s actually cogent analysis), we were stuck with Brian Williams and John Cerruti(RIP) on CBC, then later, Rod Black and Joe Carter (easily the worst of the bunch). If the game wasn’t on TSN, we would mute the TV and put on the radio – something I sometimes still do.

  20. These are exactly my sentiments as well.

  21. That’s Pat Tabler? I thought it was Glen Campbell.

  22. If you stream the radio play-by-play from the MLB At Bat app, it’s delayed about 10 seconds, and will be behind the TV feed.  Then you can pause your TV (if you have a PVR) and sync it up to the audio.

  23. He didn’t – the White Sox crew came in 31st (extra slot to allow for 2 Dodgers broadcasting teams).

  24. One thing about Martinez: Yes, he was a good colour guy with Shulman… but I think it was Shulman who made him that good. I think Shulman knew how to work Martinez’s knowledge into the broadcast effectively. Martinez with another, lesser, play-by-play guy would probably still be okay but not as good. Of course, instead of that we’ve got Martinez doing play-by-play, which I still don’t understand…

  25. Bring back Darren Fletcher.

    Or, anyone but Alan Ashby. He doesn’t do colour commentary, he just does pure criticism. Or talks about when he caught Nolan Ryan.

  26. I think the problem is that Buck just can’t stop trying to do both jobs. He is supposed to do play-by-play but the years spent doing colour mean that he is always offering opinions and analysis. Which, of course, gets tiring.

  27. I am surprised no one has mentioned the word ‘fisted’ yet.

  28. At least Buck and Pat’s Zoolander calender is top-notch. It really lets me see a side of their versatility. 

  29. Fisted by a big….schtrong man

  30. Buck’s fine when he does colour for TBS.  But nothing is worse than Wilner.  He sounds like he’s doing a home project where he overdubs his commentary onto a game that’s already been played so that he can use it to submit along with his application to broadcasting school. 

  31. Perhaps this is part of the reason why it looks like they may be slowly transitioning Alan Ashby over to the TV side?

  32. Fuck yeah, Just figured out how to delay the radio broadcast…

    Plug your radio headphone output into your computer mic input. Open up logic (or garageband, protools, whatever) and turn on a delay pedal. Works beauty.

  33. You’ve got to think the Jays machine is aware of this… or not, because 599,213 of the 600,000 average jays viewers like Buck and Tabby. 

  34. Buck is OK.

    Tabler is necessary so Buck, Ashby and that idiot Zaun don’t don’t bury us with fucking catcher-talk with no clue about hitting.

  35. I never noticed how much Tabler looks like Bill Clinton. Maybe he too hires an employee to “work” under his desk..

  36. On their own Buck or Tabler is fine, but when you put them together they become one giant cliche machine.

    I also find that Buck will criticize anything related to the Ricciardi regime, but he doesn’t say anything negative about the current front office, in fact he goes out of his way to point out how great everything is. He’s not really a “homer” in the sense of balancing excitement levels no matter which team is producing the excitement, but he’s rarely critical of the Blue Jays front office or players.

    In general I find all baeball broadcast teams annoying, mainly because of the complete statistical ignorance. I don’t expect or even want advanced sabermetrics on a tv broadcast, but baseball broadcasting really needs to step into the new era. Front offices and a large number of fans are aware of the “new ideas” but broadcaster’s are still spouting cliches from the 50′s as gospel. 

    There’s a place for both the “scouting”/playing experience aspects and more modern statistical analysis. Hopefully a new generation of broadcasters is on the horizon.

  37. thanks for being sane – ashby is brutal – like everyone else in toronto he just wants to criticize all the time – i’ll never understand why people who hate everything about a franchise consider themselves fans – and dont just go away and find something they like – buck and pat are a breath of fresh air for a baseball fan like me – people who actually like baseball and the jays

  38. #4 is Buck thinking of all the women he could have talked to in his life, but didn’t.

  39. did anyone else notice the, to me at least, real interesting information from the Fangraphs poll:

    The Toronto TV broadcasters received the most votes of any team, at 414.
    Vin Scully’s Dodgers home broadcast was a distant second, with 322
    ballots cast.

    Umm, yeah, Toronto doesn’t give a shit about baseball. Beats out every other market in this poll, but we’re really just a hockey town.  Maybe we’re just over-represented in the category of “informed baseball fans” who read Fangraphs on a regular basis. I’ll take that too.


  40. He’s anything but good………………………………………………………..is Pat tabler!  Talks like Yoda, Pat does!

  41. In what universe does Tabler look like Clinton?  

  42. Please tell me Wilner isnt doing play by play. He HAS to be the only person on earth worse than that idiot Faulds.

  43. I’m surprised no ones said anything to Martinez yet…on the other hand, you’d probably have to use those anatomically correct dolls the police use. 

  44. I liked Fletcher but a LOT didnt.

  45. Faulds was the worst by far… guy didnt know a home run from a foul tip. And EVERYTHING was an “excuse-me” bunt: and “excuse-me” line drive: an “excuse-me” strikeout….

  46. well if you were going to do that, Wilner would be the guy to start with.

  47.  I dont like either of them. Only Ashby is close to a straight shooter. The rest of them are rogers puppets. Every time I listen to the radio crew they’re making excuses for shitty performance. Same thing with the raptors radio crew

  48. I think what we always have to remember is that Jamie Campbell is NOT doing play-by-play. As long as it’s not Jamie, I’m satisfied.

  49.  The worst thing about Campbell was the retarded questions he would ask his colour guy just to get him to talk. Just totally dumb things, that Campbell knows, but asks anyway as if his audience had never watched baseball before.

  50. they don’t bother me as much as paying $60 bucks for a radio would.  Thats 2 cases

  51. Pat looks drunk in the 3rd picture.

  52. Almost looking forward to another year of “buck blunders”, as much as I am for the new season. “LONG DRIVE TO LEFT FIELD THIS BALL ISSSS!!!…caught at the warning track”

  53. Whoever picks out their wardrobe should be shot

  54.  It’s true.  I actually think Jamie Campbell is fine/actually pretty good as an in game host.  Just wasn’t ready for PBP.

  55.  one thing ive tried is mute tv, turn up radio, start sipping southern comfort right before the game starts, by about the fourth inning you dont notice the tv delay anymore

     but every now and then when wilner does the home hardware out of town scoreboard in the sixth inning i noticed i would start vomiting if i had ate some peanuts the previous inning, sometimes on those rare occasions when ashby engages wilner in idle paternalistically tolerant banter my vomit would switch to violent dry heaves

    but for the most part it was an improvement from listening to buck and tabby 

  56. I love Buck and Pat, and no apologies about it. So suck on that.

  57. works better with weed. or try my logic/protools/garageband pedal delay idea.

  58. all of Cistulli’s work sounds and reads better with spanish flea playing in the background.

    P.S. Stoeten – after your tirade post about how terrible the toronto star has become and general complaints about the MSM (of which i cannot disagree), perhaps you could take a moment to salute one of the finer intelectuals covering baseball by spelling his name properly – Cistulli


  59. Buck’s persistent stroking of the opposition gets annoying, especially NY & Boston.  When Jays lose on a walk off bomb to the Yankees, I don’t need Buck yelling THE YANKEES WIN IN YANKEES STYLE like he just got his nut off in Tab’s mouth.  Don’t need it.

  60. That’s the biggest annoyance to me, too.

  61. Hahhahaaha… best DJF post for days and days. Fuck Wilner.

  62. Buck and Pat are management shills pure and simple. There isn’t an ounce of honesty in either of them. But Rogers is looking for toadies not smart baseball men who tell the truth.
    Ratings rule and quality suffers.

  63. Lmfao one of the comments regarding the Rockies’ broadcast team:

    “Al Hrabosky… is the reason I am an alcoholic.”

    Thanks to Buck, I think many of us can relate.

  64. Fucking LOVE Buck and can’t wait to hear his golden pipes (and see his majestic hair) again this season.


  66. I want my Blue Jays to be world class. I need worlds class color commentary. Pat Tabler is not even city class. Please fire him!

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