With the surging popularity of the local sports teams, we have a plethora of experts brought into the studios on a regular basis to comment on the games as soon as they’re over, and even at halftime and between periods. Who does the best job out of all of these analysts? Who gives us the best analysis of what is going on in the game, and provides insight into the action? Who falls short in these areas?
Remember, these are the guys back in the studio, not the in-game analysts. We’ll get to them later.
Here’s a look at the voting for best studio analyst of 2005.
Not too much of a surprise here. When Dennis Eckersley is in studio, the Red Sox post game shows on NESN are pretty much “must see” television. “The Eck” is candid as well as insightful as he breaks down the action for you. He is especially good at looking at the performance of pitchers. We’re fortunate to have him in this market, why ESPN hasn’t snapped him up for Baseball Tonight is beyond me.
Eckersley garnered 517 votes for 40% of the total. Tied for second were Bob Neumeier for his work on the Patriots pre and post game shows on CBS4 and Gary Disarcina for his work on Red Sox games on NESN.
Reader comment: Jim Rice got my “best” vote; technically I'm sure he doesn't deserve it but I just like the guy. Marshall is off to a really good start. Eck is OK-to-good; I actually like him better doing color in games.
Now, let’s look at the other end of the category:
A certain Internet site is bound to be disappointed with the results of this poll. Sam Horn of the NESN Red Sox broadcasts took 359 votes for 28% of this category. Horn seems like a nice enough guy, but doesn’t bring a whole lot of insight to the telecasts. He relies on certain catchphrases during his delivery and isn’t as smooth as an analyst should be in that role.
The “no one deserves this award” category came in second, affirming that Horn is the only one that people feel is really below par in the field.
Reader Comment: Horn was an easy choice as worst. Unsettling is not a good adjective for a studio guy, but he earns it.