The Worldwide Leader announced its Sunday Night Baseball lineup for the first few months of the 2011 season, and, as expected, it’s heavy on the Yanks. In three of the season’s first seven weeks, the Yanks will play on Sunday night with first pitch shortly after 8 p.m. Eastern time. They’ll face the Red Sox in Boston on April 10 before hosting the Rangers the following Sunday night. With the Red Sox in town on May 15, ESPN will air that game as well. The Subway Series the following weekend thankfully won’t air on ESPN, but the Yanks’ 1 p.m. Opening Day match-up against the Tigers on March 31st will.
ESPN’s decision to air so many Yankee games is one driven simply by ratings. Fans come out to watch the Yanks in droves, and while I can’t stand the late starts, the late ends and the overly dramatic production, at least we won’t be stuck with Joe Morgan and Jon Miller this year. With Dan Shulman, Orel Hershisher and Bobby Valentine manning the booth, the games should be more tolerable. ESPN’s Sunday night slate so far can be found right here.