What channel is the Chicago Cubs game on? - #channel #Chicago #Cubs #game

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    It’s a new season for the Chicago Cubs, with a new TV play-by-play announcer on Marquee Sports Network and a new complaint.

    Remember all the grousing last year about whether Comcast’s Xfinity would come to terms on a carriage deal for Marquee, the channel the Cubs launched with Sinclair Broadcast Group?

    The grousing among some cable subscribers is about the surcharge on their bills.

    Maybe people wouldn’t be grousing if there was more confidence about this year’s team. The Cubs may surprise people, but how isn’t at all certain.

    Let’s get to your TV and radio questions.

    For cord cutters, what are the streaming options for fans inside the Cubs’ TV market?

    AT&T TV is the only stand-alone streaming service with Marquee as the season opens. But less than 24 hours before the season opener, Marquee and fuboTV announced a deal that will put the Cubs channel on the service’s English-language channel package in the Chicago area and surrounding regions — including Indianapolis, South Bend and Des Moines — “in the coming weeks.”

    For all the fuss last year when Hulu + Live TV picked up Marquee, it dropped the channel as soon as the season was over, and there has been no deal to report. Marquee is not on YouTube TV, either. Ditto for other services.

    That includes Sling, which like sister service Dish, has taken a hard-line stance when it comes to carriage of regional sports networks, saying it wants to keep consumer costs down. (Fun fact: Dish Network’s chairman and former chief executive made $94.7 million in total pay last year.)

    What about streaming for those who aren’t cord cutters?

    If you’re paying for a satellite or cable service subscription that covers Marquee, you can stream the service through the watchmarquee.com website and app.

    How about people who live outside the Cubs’ designated TV market?

    Most of this guide is aimed at people who live in the Cubs’ MLB designated TV market. For those who live outside, you’ll pick up the bulk of live games Marquee televises with a streaming subscription with MLB.TV or a subscription to MLB’s cable/satellite service Extra Innings. But these packages black out Cubs games in their market and, if there’s a team that plays the Cubs in your market, those games are also subject to blackout.

    If a fan who lives in the Cubs TV market wants to get Marquee and nothing else, is that available?

    A la carte simply isn’t an option. Marquee’s business model, like other regional sports networks, is predicated on getting subsidized not just by people who watch, but cable, satellite and streaming subscribers who don’t. They’re not ready to upend the economics of those carriage deals yet. Years from now, if people continue to bail on those services, that theoretically could change.

    What channel is Marquee on my satellite or cable service?

    If you’ve forgotten since last season, here’s where you can find out via Marquee’s website. The site also tells you if your carrier has the channel.

    Kasper had many reasons, but among them was that his youth listening to Ernie Harwell call Detroit Tigers games led him to fall in love with baseball on radio. Doing TV also meant he would never call a World Series for a team. He still might not, but he figured he would roll the dice.

    And the new TV play-by-play guy is?

    Jon "Boog" Sciambi sits in the broadcast booth before the Chicago Cubs play the Cactus League home opener against the Kansas City Royals at Sloan Park in Mesa, Ariz., on Tuesday, March 2, 2021.

    Jon "Boog" Sciambi sits in the broadcast booth before the Chicago Cubs play the Cactus League home opener against the Kansas City Royals at Sloan Park in Mesa, Ariz., on Tuesday, March 2, 2021. (Armando L. Sanchez / Chicago Tribune)

    Does Boog have to wear a tie?

    Apparently not. Marquee required its announcers to dress up all formal last season, even on hot summer days, but has posted notice of a policy change on social media.

    Who will handle announcing duties when Boog is off?

    Marquee has announced there will be three backups for Sciambi, who could miss 30 games or so this season. There’s Fox Sports’ Chris Myers, who originally was announced last season as a substitute for both Kasper and studio host Cole Wright. Pat Hughes, who’s starting his 26th season as the radio voice of the Cubs, is also in the TV bullpen. Marquee also plans to enlist Beth Mowins, who in spring training became the first woman to do play-by-play for the Cubs.

    Who else is contributing to Marquee telecasts?

    Many part-timers and guests will join Cole Wright in studio and, during games, Boog, J.D. and reporter Taylor McGregor (and/or Elise Menaker). Among them: Mark Grace, Ryan Dempster, Lou Piniella, Doug Glanville, Ryne Sandberg, Rick Sutcliffe, Sean Marshall, Ryan Sweeney, Carlos Pena, Mark DeRosa and Dan Plesac.

    What’s the regular studio situation going to be?

    A rotation of analysts will join Wright on pregame coverage, which will begin an hour before game time, returning after the game.

    Are all Cubs games on Marquee?

    No. Major League Baseball’s TV partners can take games for themselves. The national slates are subject to change and additions will come as the season progresses, but selected so far are:

    • April 18 vs. Atlanta Braves (ESPN)
    • May 22 at St. Louis Cardinals (Fox-32)
    • May 23 at Cardinals (ESPN)
    • June 5 at San Francisco Giants (Fox-32)
    • June 12 vs. Cardinals (Fox-32)
    • June 26 at Los Angeles Dodgers (Fox-32)
    • July 10 vs. Cardinals (Fox-32)

    The Fox-32 games are the only games available on free, over-the-air TV.

    Cable’s FS1 has picked up April 12 at the Milwaukee Brewers and April 28 at the Braves. Those games will run opposite telecasts on Marquee but aren’t subject to local blackout.

    What about TBS and other ESPN games?

    TBS, which doesn’t start running games until June, will announce its schedule later. If it picks up Cubs games, it can run only one in the Cubs’ TV market and it will not preempt Marquee’s coverage. ESPN will get to run some of its midweek games opposite Marquee but hasn’t announced any involving the Cubs as of this writing.

    Will announcers get to travel this season?

    Just like last year, the Cubs TV and radio announcers will call road games from Wrigley Field off monitors to start the season because of COVID-19 precautions. That could change with time.

    Initially, on ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball,” the plan is to have announcers Matt Vasgersian and Alex Rodriguez call games from network headquarters in Bristol, Conn., while reporter Buster Olney is on-site.

    Not really. It still is Hughes and Ron Coomer with Zach Zaidman on WSCR-AM 670 and the Cubs Radio Network. One change that should be welcomes by Chicago-area fans who have trouble with AM reception: Games will also be heard in the Chicago area via the station’s digital stream on audacy.com.

    Pat Hughes, shown during a 2016 game, will return to the Chicago Cubs radio booth this season.

    Pat Hughes, shown during a 2016 game, will return to the Chicago Cubs radio booth this season. (Chris Sweda / Chicago Tribune / Chicago Tribune)

    What stations and markets are covered by the Chicago Cubs Radio Network?

    • Illinois: WROK-AM 1440 Rockford, WZPN-FM 96.5 Peoria, WFMB-AM 1450 Springfield, WGKC-FM 105.9 Champaign, WDZ-AM 1050 Decatur, WAKO-FM 103.1 Lawrenceville, WFRX-AM 1300 West Frankfort, WGEM-AM 1440 Quincy, WKEI-AM 1450AM and WKEI-FM 101.1 Kewanee, WLDS-AM 1180 Jacksonville, WRAM-AM 1330 Monmouth and WZOE-AM 1490 Princeton.
    • Indiana: WASK-FM 98.7 Lafayette, WTRC-AM 1340 and WTRC-FM 101.9 Elkhart, WAXI-FM 104.9 Rockville, WBAT-AM 1400 Marion, WBNL-AM 1540 and WBNL-FM 97.7 Booneville, WARU-FM 101.9 Peru, and WRSW-AM 1480, and WRSW-FM 99.7 Warsaw.
    • Iowa: KRNT-AM 1350 Des Moines, KXIC-AM 800 Iowa City, WDBQ-AM 1490 Dubuque, KCNZ-AM 1650 Cedar Falls, KCPS-AM 1150 West Burlington, KJOC-AM 1170 Davenport, KADR-AM 1400 Elkader, KCIM-AM 1380 Carroll, KCNZ-AM 1650 Cedar Falls, KCPS-AM 1150 West Burlington, KJOC-AM 1170 Davenport, KMCD-AM 1570 Fairfield, KWBG-AM 1590 Boone and KNOD-FM 105.3 Harlan.
    • Minnesota: WHBR-AM 600 Sauk Rapids/St Cloud.
    • Nebraska: KNTK-FM 93.7 Lincoln, and KIBM-AM 1490 and K293CX-FM 106.5 Omaha.
    • North Dakota: WDAY-AM 970 Fargo.
    • South Dakota: KVTK-AM 1570 Vermillion.

    North and South Dakota? Minnesota? Nebraska?

    Cubs fans are everywhere. Take Nebraskans such as Pete Ricketts and his parents, Joe and Marlene, for example. Maybe they like to drive around and listen to ballgames on the radio, and they may not subscribe to SiriusXM Satellite Radio, which has a MLB games package available. So having stations in Lincoln and Omaha with Pat and Ron is helpful.



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