The Los Angeles Angels took three out of four games from the division rival Texas Rangers over their weekend series, but their stellar play wasn’t enough to distract fans from how poor the broadcast was.
During the games that were broadcasted on Bally Sports West, there was noticeable audio delays and errors, such as Angels play-by-play announcer Matt Vasgersian calling a home run as a foul ball, a foul ball as a double, and viewers witnessing the plays on TV seconds before the audio came through their speakers.
The issues stem from Vasgersian calling the games from New Jersey instead of at the ballpark due to his commitment to MLB Network. The broadcast’s analyst Mark Gubicza is also working remotely, which doesn’t allow for the same level of chemistry and feel for a game than it would if they were at the ballpark together.
For Vasgersian, he has become a well respected broadcaster through years of work at MLB Network, and while the issues are mostly out of his control, he has become frustrated by the situation, he said via Sam Blum of The Athletic:
“My frustration is high,” Vasgersian told The Athletic on Saturday. “I don’t take myself very seriously. … But I take the work seriously. So if your work is being criticized and clowned on, that stinks. And yeah, I don’t like the idea of that.”
Vasgersian called around 60 Angels games in 2021 and Bally was looking to increase his workload in 2022. But if the results so far are an indication of how it would be throughout the season, they’d be forced to change something.
The issues troubling the Angels’ broadcast were not as prevalent during 2020’s coronavirus-impacted season when every team had their announcers work remotely, so there is hope they could still work out the issues.
However, Bally has not wanted to give insight into what the issues are, so it remains to be seen if the issues are something they can fix:
Bally would not share details about where the tech issues specifically are coming from. The main difference from this season to the previous two seasons is that the broadcast is originating from the Angels’ new Santa Monica studio.
“In my mind, we owe it to the fans to put the best broadcast possible,” (analyst Mark) Gubicza said. “And that will get done. I can promise everybody it will get done.”
Bally planed for Vasgersian to work closer to 90 Angels games this season backed by their need and his strong preference for local, team-based broadcasts over national ones.
It would be great for the Angels to get 90 quality games from Vasgersian, who is one of the best in the business, but with their current setup, they’d be best off finding a replacement.
UPDATAE: Angels make broadcast change
The Angels will have broadcasters on site for their series in Houston, according to Jeff Fletcher of The O.C. Register:
It is a necessary change that should benefit fans, and hopefully they can find a fix for the issues that affected Vasgersian.