From Fox Sports -
Mets/Braves – Angels/White Sox – Twins/Rays Headline FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL Lineup at 4:00 PM ET
NASCAR’s Best Take Their Best Shot at Talladega Sunday; Special One-Hour Prerace Show Begins at 12 PM ET
Rosenthal’s Bow Tie Signifies Unity
METS/BRAVES, ANGELS/CHI SOX, TWINS/RAYS HEADLINE FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL -- Week three of the 2011 FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK returns to its regular time slot at 4:00 PM ET on Saturday, April 16 with live regional coverage of three enticing matchups. In Atlanta, Jason Heyward and the Braves aim to make progress in the NL East when they face Jose Reyes and the Mets. Both the Angels and White Sox find themselves in second place in their divisions early on as they battle in Chicago. The Tampa Bay Rays return home to host Joe Mauer and the Twins. Pregame originates live from Turner Field, with host Chris Rose. Once game action begins, Rose joins the game crew including Matt Vasgersian, Tim McCarver and Ken Rosenthal as a field reporter.
For instant updates throughout the week and during games from the entire MLB on FOX crew, follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MLBONFOX. Fans can gain more access to exclusive FOX Sports content by logging on to www.facebook.com/foxsports and www.myspace.com/foxsports.
New York Mets at Atlanta Braves (45% of nation)
Matt Vasgersian, Tim McCarver & Ken Rosenthal
Turner Field – Atlanta, GA
MARKETS INCLUDE: Atlanta, Austin, Birmingham, Buffalo, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Greensboro, Greenville, Hartford, Houston, Jacksonville, Knoxville, Louisville, Memphis, Miami, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, Norfolk, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Richmond, San Antonio, St. Louis, Washington
Probable Pitchers: Mike Pelfrey, RHP (0-1, 10.80 ERA) vs. Jair Jurrjens, RHP (0-0, -.-- ERA)
Los Angeles Angels at Chicago White Sox (35% of nation)
Kenny Albert & Mark Grace
U.S. Cellular Field – Chicago, IL
MARKETS INCLUDE: Albuquerque, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Oklahoma City, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Tulsa
Probable Pitchers: Tyler Chatwood, RHP (0-1, 7.20 ERA) vs. Gavin Floyd, RHP (1-0, 2.40 ERA)
Minnesota Twins at Tampa Bay Rays (19% of nation)
Dick Stockton & Eric Karros
Tropicana Field – St. Petersburg, FL
MARKETS INCLUDE: Baltimore, Boston, Detroit, Fort Myers, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Orlando, Providence, Tampa, West Palm Beach
Probable Pitchers: Scott Baker, RHP (0-2, 6.55 ERA) vs. Jeremy Hellickson, RHP (1-1, 4.09 ERA)
ROSENTHAL’S BOW TIE OF THE WEEK: COLLABORATION – Each week, FOX Sports reporter and FOXSports.com senior MLB columnist Ken Rosenthal puts on a new bow tie before heading to the stadium to work the FOX SATURDAY BASEBALL GAME OF THE WEEK. Rosenthal’s new attraction to formal wear isn’t just so he can look his best at the ballpark; it is to call attention to a special movement or charity, through “The Bow Tie Cause” created by Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Dhani Jones. Jones’ company has produced bow ties that represent a number of nationally known charities. This week in Atlanta, Rosenthal dons a purple bow tie, which represents collaboration. Combining red and blue, two colors symbolic of our political system, yields purple. It is when these two colors come together that something truly outstanding happens.
For more information, log onto FOXSports.com: http://ow.ly/4zGD7
CONTENDERS VS. PRETENDERS – ROSENTHAL BREAKS DOWN EARLY SEASON SURPRISES – The baseball season is still young, but a few teams are off to a surprising start. FOX Sports reporter and FOXSports.com senior MLB columnist Ken Rosenthal analyzes six teams that are playing above their modest expectations and looks at who will still be playing for something in September.
Marlins – Contender, in their usual 80- to 85-win way. “The intriguing thing about the Marlins is that Hanley Ramirez seems serious about becoming a leader, even asking manager Edwin Rodriguez his opinion on what to say to his teammates and how to handle certain situations.”
Indians – Pretender, but better than most of us thought. “The Indians’ season likely will hinge on whether their pitching stays consistent and the team’s improved infield defense should help. To contend, the Indians will need young players such as right-hander Carlos Carrasco, first baseman Matt LaPorta and outfielder Michael Brantley to produce at a high level.”
Blue Jays – Pretender, but worth monitoring. “A 5-4 record against the Twins, A’s and Angels suggests the Jays will at least be competitive — if the young rotation continues to develop, if first baseman Adam Lind and second baseman Aaron Hill bounce back, and if a number of other things go right.”
Diamondbacks – Pretender, but give general manager Kevin Towers time. “It’s difficult to trust the D-Backs’ pitching, but right-handers Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson already have combined for four quality starts and the bullpen seems to be taking shape — David Hernandez in the seventh, Juan Gutierrez or Aaron Heilman in the eighth, J.J. Putz in the ninth.”
Pirates – Pretender. “Righty Kevin Correia and lefty Paul Maholm could be solid, Charlie Morton looks poised for a breakout and prospects are developing at every level. The Pirates will need luck and more time to develop a dominant staff.”
Royals – Contender . . . in 2013. “Several of the Royals’ better prospects are still two years away, and some are certain to sputter. For now, the most noticeable difference in the club is its up-the-middle defense with second baseman Chris Getz and shortstop Alcides Escobar. Outfielder Melky Cabrera is playing with a high level of professionalism, and the bullpen looks good.”
For Rosenthal’s complete analysis warning to “Beware of early-season fool’s gold” click here: http://tinyurl.com/5reoltq.
CAN DALE JR. END 100 RACE WINLESS STREAK AT HIS FAVORITE TRACK? – It hasn’t been an easy road on the Sprint Cup circuit the last few years for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Winless since 2008; Junior looks to end that streak on Sunday, April 17 (12:00 PM ET) as the NASCAR on FOX season continues with a special hour-long prerace show from Talladega Superspeedway. Boasting an impressive five wins, ranking second in laps led in the last 10 races, and in 20 of 22 career starts overall, Junior. tries to parlay that success into another checkered flag. Coverage starts with the NASCAR on FOX prerace show hosted by Chris Myers, along with analysts Darrell Waltrip and Jeff Hammond. The show airs live from the infield with updates from the Hollywood Hotel, FOX Sports’ traveling prerace set providing updates from drivers, crewmen and officials shaping the day’s action. On this week’s show, Waltrip sits down with Kyle Busch as he prepares for his “lucky” 13th start at Talladega and Pizzi from FOXSports.com’s “Cubed” hits the Talladega infield scene to take in the fanatical atmosphere. Once the green flag drops, the voice of NASCAR Mike Joy is alongside analysts Waltrip and Larry McReynolds to call all the twists and turns on the track while Dick Berggren, Steve Byrnes, Krista Voda and Matt Yocum patrol the pits for reports on teams and pit stops.
CAR WARRIORS CHALLENGER DEPLOYED TO AFGHANISTAN BEFORE CONCLUSION OF TAPING – Staff Sargeant Bradley Bove found out about his re-deployment to Afghanistan just one week before he and his team from Edwards Air Force Base were set to compete on SPEED’s new hit automotive reality series CAR WARRIORS. Bove was selected to be the team’s painter on SPEED Channel’s high-pressure build show and handled the news in true military fashion; it was all about getting the job done. In fact, Bove believes the team’s military training gave them a distinct advantage over the CAR WARRIORS All-Star team of regulars. “Although any time limit is stressful, I have to admit, in the military we deal with this situation a lot,” said Bove, an Aircraft Structural Maintenance Craftsman. CAR WARRIORS, a one-hour weekly series shot on a purpose-built set developed on the grounds of Ted Moser’s famed Picture Car Warehouse in Northridge, Ca., features a hand-picked, eight-person All-Star automotive team taking on shops from around the country in a pressure-packed, 72-hour restoration project, matching wits, skills and stamina on a wide variety of vehicles. The episode premieres on SPEED Wednesday, April 20th (9:00 PM ET) and even Bove had to wait to see if his team of Challengers had emerged victorious.
DAYTONA 500 WINNER HITS “THE DAILY HABIT” ON FUEL TV THURSDAY, APRIL 14 – The youngest Daytona 500 winner (and skateboarder) Trevor Bayne gets interviewed on “The Daily Habit” on FUEL TV Thursday, April 14 (11:00 PM ET/PT). “The Daily Habit” host Pat Parnell and pro skater Chris Pastras catch up with Bayne and discuss numerous topics including NASCAR and skateboarding.
CHARGERS PRO BOWL LINEBACKER SHAUN PHILLIPS TELLS BARFLY: ON-FIELD PRODUCT COULD SUFFER IF LOCKOUT ISN’T RESOLVED SOON – In this week’s episode of BARFLY, a candid, topical, sports-centric show hosted by national columnist Mark Kriegel, San Diego Chargers Pro Bowl Linebacker Shaun Phillips discusses the effect the lockout is having on players with Kriegel and FOX NFL Insider Jay Glazer. “It’s taking away from the game because we’re supposed to be practicing right now, honing your skills and doing group activities,” said Phillips. “With us not having that right now, it’s taking away from the product. There are things you can do to simulate that, but we’re not building the togetherness that you would normally get to build.” New episodes of BARFLY premiere on FOXSports.com Tuesdays at 1:00 PM ET. http://msn.foxsports.com/video/shows/barfly
FOX SOCCER TRAVELS TO TORONTO – FOX Soccer’s Major League Soccer coverage travels north to Canada Saturday as Toronto FC hosts a resurging D.C. United. Coverage from BMO Field begins at Saturday, April 16 (6:30PM ET/3:30pm PT). Busy Toronto plays their third match in seven nights during a rash of player personnel shifts. In a major move last week, captain and midfielder Dwayne DeRosario was traded to the New York Red Bulls for central midfielder Tony Tcani, defender Danleigh Broman and a first-round pick in 2012. The inspirational comeback of D.C. United and U.S. international Charlie Davies, who was critically injured in an October 2009 car accident, continued last week as the powerful forward drew a penalty and converted from the spot in the 90th minute to salvage a 1-1 tie with the Galaxy. The goal was Davies’ fourth of the season. Mark Rogondino brings you the play-by-play with former MLS standout Kyle Martino providing analysis and Brian Dunseth contributing sideline reports. Former U.S. National Team and MLS players Eric Wynalda and Christopher Sullivan team up for the pre-game, halftime and post-game coverage. For the latest MLS news, information and FOX Soccer’s 2011 telecast schedule, visit: http://msn.foxsports.com/foxsoccer/mls.
PARKER JOINS FOX SPORTS COMMUNICATIONS -- Emily Parker, formerly of Sloane & Company in New York, recently joined the FOX Sports Communications Department as a publicist working on the network’s broadcast coverage of NASCAR, MLB, the NFL and FOXSports.com. Parker comes to FOX Sports with experience in publicity and television production, both in front of and behind the camera. In her prior position with Sloane & Company, she served as a Public Relations Associate. Emily also provided communications services in a freelance capacity for the Heisman Trophy Trust this past season. Before working in media relations, Parker served as a reporter, anchor and news producer at WLFI in West Lafayette, IN. She also worked as a freelance reporter and producer at WSTR in Cincinnati. Parker has a dual major in Broadcast Journalism and Psychology from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse, a Masters in Broadcast Journalism from Northwestern’ s Medill School of Journalism, and is on track to complete a Sports Business Graduate Certificate from New York University in July.