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Study: The Mets’ and Yankees’ TV Announcers Are Among the Least Biased in Baseball

Paul O'Neill and Ron Darling, unbiased announcers.

Are the Yankees' TV announcers homers? What about the Mets' announcers? It's possible you long ago decided the answer to those questions, one way or the other. But The Wall Street Journal today published a piece in which they tried to identify which big-league TV broadcast booths are the most biased, and both the YES booth and the SNY booth were found to be among the least biased in the league.

Here's what the Journal based its findings on:

By the rules of our study, anyone with a microphone who used a pronoun like "we," "us" or "our" to describe the home team was given a citation. Obscure pet names for players were also flagged: The Detroit Tigers announcers, for instance, referred to backup catcher Gerald Laird as "G-Money." Additional penalties were given for things like excessive moping after miscues or unrestrained glee after big moments. (A Miami Marlins broadcaster marked the end of a lengthy scoreless drought by screaming "Hallelujah!")

Now, it's worth pointing out that this is based on watching just one game for teach team, but the Mets' and Yankees' booths were both among the five broadcasting teams that finished with zero biased comments. (If you're wondering, the Yankees' booth for the game in question consisted of Michael Kay, Paul O'Neill, and Ken Singleton. The Mets' team was the usual trio of Gary Cohen, Keith Hernandez, and Ron Darling.) And the methodology is important for something like this: It's not clear how much it mattered if a broadcaster, say, went easy on the team they cover when it deserved criticism — a real pet peeve of ours.

The Journal found that announcers in bigger markets tended to be less biased — with one huge exception: The White Sox booth of Ken Harrelson and Steve Stone finished with 104 biased comments in the game the paper watched, which is more than every other A.L. team's booth combined.

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Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty and Mark Von Holden/Getty Images