With the 2014 season approaching, MLB Network today announced its first schedule of live regular season games, which includes more than 40 game telecasts beginning with the exclusive national telecast of the MLB Opening Series Sydney 2014 next weekend.
MLB Network's Matt Vasgersian and John Smoltz will have the call live from the Sydney Cricket Ground as the Arizona Diamondbacks and Los Angeles Dodgers match up in a two-game series in Australia on Saturday, March 22. The first game will air live at 4:00 a.m. ET, immediately followed by a replay telecast at 7:30 a.m. ET, and the second game live at 10:00 p.m. ET. Former Australia cricket captain and International Cricket Council Hall of Fame member Ian Chappell of Australia's Nine Network will join Vasgersian and Smoltz for commentary throughout each game.
Back in the U.S., MLB Network will televise nine games during Opening Week from April 1 through April 6, including the World Series champion Boston Red Sox's home opener against the Milwaukee Brewers on MLB Network Showcase on Friday, April 4 at 2:00 p.m. ET with Bob Costas, Jim Kaat and Sam Ryan on the call. The next day, the 2013 National League champion St. Louis Cardinals will face the Pittsburgh Pirates in a rematch of the 2013 NLDS on Saturday, April 5 at 7:00 p.m. ET. MLB Network will begin a new slate of Sunday matinee games for the first half of the season as the Baltimore Orioles travel to Detroit to face the Tigers on April 6 at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Later in the month, MLB Network Showcase will travel to Boston on Patriots' Day, April 21 for a special matinee telecast of the Orioles against the Red Sox at 11:00 a.m. ET, called by Costas, Kaat and Tom Verducci. The next night, the same MLB Network Showcase crew will call the New York Yankees at Red Sox on April 22 at 7:00 p.m. ET. MLB Network's Intentional Talk with Chris Rose and Kevin Millar will also head to Boston and air live from Fenway Park on April 21 and 22 at 5:00 p.m. ET.
The remainder of MLB Network's April game schedule is available here, including the following matchups on MLB Network Showcase presented by Chevrolet (all times Eastern):
Fri., April 4, 2:00 p.m.: Milwaukee Brewers at Boston Red Sox (Costas, Kaat and Ryan)
Thu., April 10, 7:00 p.m.: Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees (Costas, Smoltz and Verducci)
Thu., April 17, 7:00 p.m.: St. Louis Cardinals at Washington Nationals (Vasgersian, Smoltz and Ryan)
Mon., April 21, 11:00 a.m.: Baltimore Orioles at Boston Red Sox (Costas, Kaat and Verducci)
Tues., April 22, 7:00 p.m.: New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox (Costas, Kaat and Verducci)
Tues., April 29, 7:00 p.m.: Seattle Mariners at New York Yankees (Costas, Smoltz and Ryan)
Games will be blacked out in each team's home television territory unless otherwise announced. Viewers in areas subject to blackouts will be provided with an alternate game telecast or other programming.
MLB Network's commercial-free, highlights-focused Strike Zone channel will return on Tuesday, April 1 at 7:00 p.m. ET, taking viewers on a high-speed trip around MLB on Tuesday and Friday nights during the regular season. When live game telecasts air on MLB Network, MLB Network Strike Zone brings fans to every game across the league, with up-to-the-minute highlights, live look-ins and updates. MLB Network Strike Zone is available on providers across the country including AT&T U-verse, Bright House Networks, DirecTV, DISH, Google Fiber and Time Warner Cable.
About MLB Network:
MLB Network is the ultimate television destination for baseball fans, featuring the multiple Emmy Award-winning MLB Tonight, live regular season and Postseason game telecasts, original programming, highlights, and insights and analysis from the best in the business, including Bob Costas, Peter Gammons, Jim Kaat, Al Leiter and Harold Reynolds. MLB Network debuted on January 1, 2009 in a record-setting 50 million homes and is currently distributed in approximately 70 million homes throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. For more information and to find MLB Network in your area, go to www.MLBNetwork.com.