The Evil Empire wins again.
The New York Yankees were miffed when ESPN selected their July 8 game against the Blue Jays for their Sunday night broadcast because it pushed the start time from 1:07 PM to 8:07 PM. The Yankees have to fly to Baltimore immediately afterwards to play a double-header on Monday, a result of games postponed due to heavy rain from earlier in the season. The team complained and even threatened to boycott ESPN media for the rest of the season.
By Tuesday night, the Worldwide Leader in Sports had given in.
ESPN backtracked on their decision, allowing the Yankees-Jays game to return to its afternoon start time. Instead, the network will put the Dodgers vs. the Angels in prime time that night.
“Hopefully there is some pressure being applied because that is not good for the product on the field or the safety of our guys, having go from night game, flight and right into a doubleheader,” New York manager Aaron Boone said earlier this week. “Anybody who would argue with that is not being truthful.”
The Yankees are already scheduled to be on Sunday Night Baseball twice more in July — on the 1st against the Red Sox and again on the 22nd against the Mets. As for the Blue Jays, Canada’s sole MLB team hasn’t appeared on Sunday Night Baseball since 2004. It’s the longest streak of any team in the league.
The Yankees are among the best teams in baseball, with a 39-18 record, and are already in a battle with the Red Sox for the Al East division title.