Nearly every time Don Orsillo read an in-game commercial or promo, Jerry Remy offered some commentary. He told us how much he loves the sponsor or how he was reminded to use a particular product or visit a store or he wanted to encourage us to visit the store.
Every time Don started a spot, I waited for Jerry to chime in. And he did! Every. Single. Time. I cannot recall hearing this kind of forced banter before. Usually, Orsillo reads the bits and we get back to the baseball game. While I found it utterly amazing, especially as I was waiting for each one in the middle innings, it also made the broadcast virtually unlistenable.
What follows is most of the incidents. It's disgraceful that NESN is forcing its announcers to perform addendums to the commercials instead of calling the game and discussing the Red Sox -- and Orsillo and Remy should have enough clout to object to this embarrassing behaviour. (Either they did not object or they lost the battle with the network.) I'm sure NESN hopes that Orsillo's and Remy's popular booth banter will disguise the advertisements somewhat, but that plan was an utter failure on Sunday.
Start of top of 2nd, (Dunkin Donuts):
Remy: I love that apple pie!Top of 2nd, Kotsay batting (NESN program with Charlie Moore):
Remy: Oh, delicious!
Orsillo (suppressing a giggle as Remy seemed a bit too excited): I'll have to try it out.
Remy: Ahh, that should be fun, from beautiful Lake Winnipesaukee.Bottom of 2nd, after Hall walks (CVS Pharmacy):
Remy: I have to stop in at CVS after the game. I got a few things to pick up before we head out on the next road trip.Top of 3rd, Rios batting:
Orsillo: I already did today.
Remy: Yeah, I know!
Remy: I was thinking about that Overstocked promo, you know, where they get to flip the numbers on the scoreboard. That's the Ultimate Fan Experience. I think the Ultimate Fan Experience would be able to sit in the dugout during a game, wouldn't you say?Top of 3rd, Quentin batting (Monster Money/Mass State Lottery):
Remy: I play that all the time. Haven't hit yet, but will continue to play.Bottom of 3rd, Ortiz batting (NESN show Pocket Money):
Orsillo: You can't win if you don't play.
Remy: I said I play it all the time!
Orsillo: I know, that's what I'm saying. You got to keep playing.
Remy: You know, I've got to start to watch all three of those shows. We just haven't had time.Start of top of 4th (Cumberland Farms):
Orsillo: I know, with the day-night doubleheader and everything else, the road.
Remy: Ten o'clock tonight, I've got to put on Pocket Money. And I need to see the other two new shows, too. I have not seen them yet.
Orsillo: Shining City and, of course, After The Game.
Orsillo: You're all over it tonight, though.
Remy: Yeah, there's nothing on tonight.
Remy: Really good stuff. Really good stuff. 79 cents -- can't beat that.Bottom of 4th, Vizquel batting (Beth Israel Deaconess First Aid Stand):
Orsillo: Cannot beat it. The Chill Zone.
Remy: Let's hope you don't, but if you do, you are in good hands.Start of top of 5th (Red Sox Monster Mondays):
Orsillo: Right here at the ball park, in case you need it.
Remy: That's basically a whole half-hour of Tom Caron at 5:30, leading up to the pre-game show.Top of 5th, after Rios grounds out (Boston Globe):
Orsillo (very quietly): It's not all Tom Caron.
Orsillo: It's not all Tom Caron.
Remy: Well, it's an awful lot of Tom Caron.
Orsillo: There's a segment at 5:35 that isn't Tom Caron. It's 2-1, White Sox on top of the Red Sox.
Remy (Kif Krokeresque): Uhhhhhhhhhhhhh ...
Orsillo: As we head to the bottom of the fourth inning. Bill Hall.
Remy: Yes, make sure you tune in early, because --
Orsillo (laughing): Really early.
Remy: Don Orsillo is on very early. His hit is at 5:36. ... So be sure to tune in early.
Remy: You know, I went all through that Globe today, this morning, from front page to back page. And I looked at the jobs, just in case. You never know what might happen.Bottom of 5th, Lowrie batting (Red Sox online shop):
Remy: I check that every day, I'm looking for that perfect gift.Bottom of 5th, Ortiz batting (NESN Daily):
Remy: I actually saw you on that show one time. You did a hit for it. Saw it on the website.Top of 6th, after Ramirez grounds out (three NESN shows (again)):
Remy (excitedly): Oh! Well, that works out just perfect, because after the game, I'm going to have some dinner.(Right! Because the restaurant hasn't ponied up some $$$ to NESN!)
Orsillo: Where you gonna eat?
Remy: I can't say.
Top of 6th, Beckham batting (Covidien/Red Sox Foundation "helping to address health needs in our communities"):
Remy: And they do a wonderful job!Bottom of 6th, after Lowell grounds out (Benjamin Moore Paint):
Remy: You know, I didn't know about that stain until we started reading the promos this year. So I tried it out on the deck in the back of the condo I have.There were a few others, though they were minor. Remy noted that the Dunkin' Donuts Dugout had "good seats" and he informed us that you could "follow his [Don's] every move" on NESN's website.
Remy: Unbelievable. And the way it holds up to the water is incredible.
And I swear Remy also noted that there was "nothing like a cold Sam Adams" at some point in the first 45 minutes of the game (I posted about it in the game thread), but I could not find it in the archived broadcast.
This "banter" pretty much stopped in the top of the seventh. It looked like NESN started off slowly, maybe one per half-inning, before cranking it up in the middle innings. Then they left the last few innings alone, on the off chance they were eventful or tense.
NESN is making a huge mistake if it continues overshadowing the game with advertising. It was glaringly apparent what was going on and it detracted greatly from the broadcast. Its very existence was annoying enough, but Remy's stupid banter was the exact opposite of his on-air personality. What will NESN's next great idea be -- adding a whooping sitcom laugh track to the play-by-play?
You can contact NESN at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617-536-9233.