The problems with the MLB Network are well understood. The ratings are poor and the programming is spotty. Rather than doing more of the above, four and a half minutes of didactic baseball greatness, the programming on MLBN seems to alternate between a braying scab in a Guy Fieri costume GOT HEEMing and lists on lists on lists on lists.
Which is a shame, as this segment with Baseball Prospectus editor Ben Lindbergh is tremendous. I mean, treeeeeeeeeemendous. Ben knows his stuff, host Brian Kenny is engaged and the video accompaniment visually hammers the point — that Jose Molina saves copious runs with his next-level pitch framing — home convincingly and efficiently. The former player segment with long-time pro Dave Valle is an invaluable yin to Ben’s learned baseball nerd* yang.
Kudos, everyone at Clubhouse Confidential and great job to Ben. Stuff like this makes me eagerly await the inevitable disappointment of MLB Network Canada. Not allowing the embedded video to play on Getting Blanked (South Park reference goes here) is a serious buzz kill, however. This is why we can’t have nice things, MLBN!
* – said with love, respect, and no small amount of envy.