Reynolds, Verducci join Buck in Fox baseball booth
NEW YORK (AP) Harold Reynolds and Tom Verducci will join Joe Buck in the announcers’ booth for Fox’s Major League Baseball coverage this season.
Tim McCarver retired after the World Series as the network’s top color commentator.
Reynolds has been a studio analyst for MLB Network since its launch at the start of 2009 and will remain in that role. A two-time All-Star second baseman for the Seattle Mariners, Reynolds retired as a player after the 1994 season.
He was the lead studio analyst for ESPN’s ”Baseball Tonight” for a decade before he was fired in 2006. Reynolds claimed at the time he was wrongly terminated after a female intern complained about what he called a ”brief and innocuous” hug. He sued the network three months later, and an out-of-court settlement was reached in 2008.
Reynolds said MLB Network’s practice of offering live look-ins of games with studio analysts’ commentary prepared him for the move to the booth.
”That has helped to sharpen the mindset of studio to the game,” he said Monday.
He also believes game coverage has started to look more like studio analysis in recent year, with more in-depth graphics on trends during broadcasts. Reynolds and Verducci have worked together for MLB Network, and Fox Sports executive vice president John Entz said their preexisting chemistry helped them click with Buck during a practice run of the three-man booth.
”Harold and Tom have done hundreds of hours of TV together,” Entz said.
Verducci, who will continue to write for Sports Illustrated, has previously worked regular-season games for Fox and served as a reporter and studio analyst for TBS’s playoff coverage.
The trio will make their debut April 5 for a Giants-Dodgers game on Fox Sports 1.
Fox also announced Monday that Kevin Burkhardt will be the main studio host, with Frank Thomas, Eric Karros, Gabe Kapler and C.J. Nitkowski serving as analysts.
Fox is starting a new eight-year rights deal with MLB that includes games on its cable channel, FS1.