1989, the MGM was "folded" on the left and called Pribbon.
From a newspaper, get the page that shows the baseball standings and tonight's schedule.
Note the starting pitchers for the Pirates and their opponents. If you have press guides, write down the following facts about these pitchers: height, weight, age, hometown (either "born" or "resides"), and major-league won-lost record, innings pitched, and earned runs. You'll need all these facts later.
Also try to dig out an interesting "hero note" about each pitcher.
Check with the producer about what graphics will be in tonight's show. We don't actually use all our standard graphics in every broadcast, so there's no need to prepare "Tonight in Baseball" if it's not on tonight's broadcast. However, Bill will probably have some special full-page panels in mind.
You arrive at the truck about five hours before air time.
If the truck hasn't done a KDKA game lately, or if you aren't sure, first restore the MGM graphic "Plaque" from floppy to hard disk.
Drive A is the one that's used during the game. From drive B, we can get panels (such as promos) that we used last time and will be using again tonight.
load the system disk (autoload 1).
The "a" in a0019 indicates that this is an autodisplay, a prerecorded function that plays back multiple keystrokes to perform specific tasks.
Select drive A and call up a0019 to set the system edge, etc.
Check out a few of the other messages to make sure everything's in order.
You've brought the newspaper. Bill will give you several other sources of information as they become available to him.
There's the manila folder which contains a Chyron List with promos and contests and such. By the way, ignore the addresses on this list; some are correct but others are outdated.
There are the MLB-IBM Stats, several familiar pages of computer printout.
There are the lineups for the two teams.
And there are the printed Game Notes from each team's PR office.
As each of these sources is delivered to you, you can create various panels from it. Here's the priority: Panels that will be recorded on still-store or pre-taped in the afternoon should be prepared first, so as not to delay the pre-production process. Panels that will be keyed in live during the game should be prepared last.
Call up a0033 to read on the quiz. Retype the question (with a record mark at the end) and the four answers (with record marks on each row). Record the question at 1775 and the answers at 1782 through 1788. Call up a0033 again to make sure everything works.
Next, call up the answer panel from 1790. With the cursor on the third row, pop in the question from 1775; delete the record mark. Type in the correct answer. Record the whole thing back at 1790 and check it.
When the stats arrive, refer to your notes on the two starting pitchers. Add your press-guide numbers for career W, L, IP and ER to the current-season numbers to get new totals. Calculate the updated career ERA (= 9 x ER / IP) for each starter.
Armed with these numbers, create 0480 and 0880 Lifetime Stats. Consult with Bill as to what hero note he wants to use for each pitcher, and create 0470 and 0870 Starting Pitcher.
Next find the stats pages headed National League Batting (and Pitching) Departmental Leaders. Consider only those departments in which the Pirates or tonight's opponent are represented among the ten leaders. Pick the most useful eleven departments to be made into NL Leaders panels (1800 through 1900).
To begin, call up 1800. Say that it turns out to be Runs Batted In, and RBI is in fact one of the eleven departments you want to use. It will be easiest to move and retype the existing names and numbers right here, and then re-record 1800.
Let's say the RBI stats are as follows:
By checking the Team Batting/Pitching pages, you discover that one of those three players who are tied with 38 RBI is Murphy of Atlanta, whom we're playing tonight.
We have room for only five players, not ten. We'll choose Bonilla, Van Slyke, and Murphy because they're here, and Davis because he shares the league lead. That leaves room for one other player, and the most deserving is Brunansky.
Davis and Bonilla are tied for #1. Brunansky is next at #3. Van Slyke is #9, and Murphy is among those tied at #10.
So, putting the Buc first, our Chyron panel looks like this:
Pittsburgh is in yellow, Atlanta in blue or red, and other cities in gray (the "green" key). Often you'll have to abbreviate the cities.
All of the above is high priority, because stills will be made from the Starting Pitcher, Lifetime Stats, and NL Leader panels. Lower priority uses which you can make of the stats include:
0100 Batting Averages for every player. Of course, this is lower priority only in the sense of scheduling your afternoon time; it still has to be done before we go on the air.
0300, 0305 Pitching Stats, two panels for every pitcher.
Director Lonnie Dale has arrived by now, and the tape room is ready to start pre-production. Lonnie will want to store (as stills) the panels I've described as high priority. Each Chryon panel is keyed over another still-store background, and sometimes a player's face is added from the DVE.
About now is when Bill gets the starting lineups. This allows you to build a number of other stills, at Lonnie's direction.
1450 and 1470 are the batting orders. Use the space bar and repeat key to wipe out all the names and positions except the leadoff hitter's; retype that one if necessary. A composite still will be recorded. Type in the second hitter; use a0007 to stretch the blank space to the right of his position (if you don't do this on each row, you won't be able to re-record the panel in its allotted space when you're done). And so on.
After all nine names have been typed in and all nine stills recorded, re-record the panel where you got it. 1460 and 1480 Defense are also typed and still-stored.
Now most of the crew gets a supper break, but the Chryon operator usually doesn't because there's more to be done.
Since you now know the lineups, you can make out your scorecard. After each starter's name, note his stolen bases (SB) and attempts (SB + CS), so that you'll have these numbers later to use with a0022.
Type the home team's 1-2-3 hitters into 0062 Due-Ups.
Use a0909, if you wish, to make 0fers for the 18 starters. Record them at 0910, 0915, ..., 0095.
From your newspaper, set up the scores of other games (1650 through 1690) and maybe the NL standings (1500 and 1515).
If "Today in Baseball" is to be used, set up 1530 through 1640. These are one panel per game. If there's a final score in the game, show it and the winning and losing pitchers and their records. If the game hasn't finished or hasn't even started, just list the teams, the starting pitchers with their records, and the game time (EDT). These panels, which you've delayed making in order to get those final scores, will be put on still store before air time.
Fill in our game's pitcher names (and records) on 1700 Box Summary, 1730 Pitcher Comp, and 0495 and 0895 Pitching Line. If you have time to do this now, it will save time later.
Check to make sure that your name is at 2217 in the credits. If you re-record it, make sure the next address is 2220.
And don't forget the other "low-priority" items you've been putting off.
The crew comes back from supper to pre-tape some interviews. Call up 0093 Hardball Insider on channel 1 and type the name of each guest as he shows up. Meanwhile, continue loading on channel 2.
The Game Notes should be out by now. I haven't been using them for much, maybe just heroes on a couple of players. We're trying to avoid the routine "five-game hitting streak" type of notes. Bill does like to use "Batting .400 with runners in scoring position" when there are runners in scoring position.
Bill may ask for 0470 or 0870 to be redone if the talent has found a better hero note on a pitcher.
Next, the talent will pre-tape the opening segment of the show. All you need to do is call up their names, e.g., 0073 John Sanders and 0078 Color. But if Color has been typed as Steve Blass and the actual color man is Jim Rooker, you'll have to retype 0070, 0075, 0078, 0080, and 0085.
Lonnie then will rehearse the opening segment. You have two autodisplays here: a0030 Opening Sequence coming out of the billboards, and a0031 Animate OnDeck going into the commercial break.
Rehearsing the opening sequence should remind you to get the actual weather conditions and record them at 1420 Weather, since that's the third panel of this sequence. How to get the conditions varies from city to city; there may be a phone number you can call, or when the AD returns to the booth maybe she can tell you the temperature.
With the director, record any stills which are still pending; for example, "Today in Baseball."
Find out the umpires' names (from the AD or the scorecard) and record them at 1440. Check out 0032 Animate Umps, which works on channel 1 only.
Soon thereafter, the director will go to a sequence of stills to introduce the lineups. Your next Chyron is usually the two lower-third stats panels on the home team's starting pitcher.
Umpires and/or coaches may follow if there's time. Remember that a0032 for the umps has to be called up on channel 1, so you can't preview it while the pitcher's stats are still on the air.
Then the first batter is at the plate. Use his batting average. Don't be surprised if you don't get this in until the third pitch because the telecast was behind schedule and you were still airing the starting pitcher's stats during the first two pitches.
My usual rotation on the batters is as follows. First time up: batting average. Second time: a hero note if available, otherwise "0 for 1/Struck Out." Third time: updated batting average, supplied by the AD. Fourth time: "1 for 3/Singled in 3rd Inning." Fifth time: updated batting average.
If there's a hit or an error, update the scoreboards in this priority: 0055, 0048, 0040. But when a run scores, I usually do 0048 first so that Lonnie can get it on the air right away. (He will also use 0048 occasionally during longer innings just to update the viewers tuning in.)
For pictures and more details, see another article on this website called I Invented the Fox Box.
When the ball is hit for what should be the third out, abandon whatever else you might be doing and call up a0006 on channel 1. Wait for Lonnie's "Wipe it!" to hit the space bar. Five seconds after that, we should go to black.
You'll find that the cursor is waiting for you to replace "Mid 1st" with "End 1st" and then to re-record 0055. Then go over to channel 2, where the cursor is likewise ready for you to type the due-ups and then to re-record 0062.
If there was scoring in the inning, at this point Lonnie may want to record the How They Scored still, so give him the panel you recorded in 1910-1995 on channel 1. After that, give him 0040 (properly updated and re-recorded) on channel 1.
On channel 2, change the inning on 0048. Listen to the producer for what you should call up on channel 2 after that.
Coming back from break, Lonnie will almost always use 0040. This could be followed by a still, or by a Chyron like 1400 Copyright (also known as Disclaimer), 2160 Home Run Sweepstakes (also known as Giant Eagle), a0033 Quiz (also known as Equibank Challenge), or 0080 (for a change of announcers).
We rarely worry about putting out-of-town scores on the Chyron. They aren't sponsored, and the announcers tend to give scores whenever they feel like it (rather than whenever the Chyron's ready). But you have the teams loaded and can update the scores if asked.
As the game nears an end, get 1700 ready. This is known as the Summary Graphic. Bill and the AD can help you confirm the winning pitcher, left on base, etc.
When the Player of the Game has been chosen (usually about the end of the eighth inning), get 0096 ready. During a commercial break, this will be used to build a still of tonight's star.
During the commercial break, update 0040 and put it on Channel 1. The post-game segment also usually includes 1700 Summary Graphic, plus sometimes an interview.
Then it's time for the announcer to read the final card.
The first Chyron in the closing sequence is 2190 Next TV Game. Then announcer then says "The executive producer . . . " and you switch hot to 2220. Follow along with the rest of the credits; the last one is your name from 2217. That's followed immediately by another hot change to 2220 Final Score, which is used again following the billboards. And we're off the air.
John Sanders may feed some news clips back to KDKA after the broadcast. Then you can put up 1750 Goodnight with the appropriate time.
You may want to reset your scoreboards to zeroes for the next game. This should be easy if they're properly backed up. Call up the backup 2348 and record it at 0048, and so on.
When you're done, you should copy your messages from hard disk drive A (which you've been using) back to the floppy disk marked with tonight's opponent (so we'll have those messages for future games).
Then reload the system disk and park the hard disk drive.