Wednesday Night Baseball is a live game telecast of Major League Baseball that airs every Wednesday night during the regular season on ESPN and is also available in high definition on ESPNHD. The game starts at 7pm ET, following SportsCenter, and usually lasts around three hours with an hour long Baseball Tonight following the game leading up to the 11pm ET SportsCenter. The official name is ESPN Wednesday Night Baseball presented by Goodyear.
Wednesday Night Baseball is not exclusive to ESPN. Local sports networks may still air the game. ESPNEWS is seen on ESPN during the game in the teams' designated markets, unless local broadcasters choose not to televise the game. ESPN's blackout (100-mile radius from the stadium, and all of a team's designated market) can be lifted in the latter scenario.
Beginning in 2007
, when the new contract went into play, Wednesday Night Baseball
took on a new look. Now, in addition to covering the featured game of the night, the will also have live cut-ins from other games going on from around Major League Baseball
. The telecast will also feature updates on all of the major story-lines of the night and a look at the week ahead in baseball. This reflects Wednesday being the last day ESPN will air a game until Sunday, except once the NFL
season begins in September, when games will air on Fridays instead of Mondays. Previously, ESPN had the right to show games on Thursdays
ESPN has the option under the new contract to show WNB on ESPN2 up to six times a year and they normally do this while the NBA season is still taking place.
A complete list of broadcasters, with their period of tenure on the show (beginning years of each season shown).
- Erin Andrews: (field reporter, 2008-present)
- Chris Berman: (play-by-play, 1990-present, select games)
- Bonnie Bernstein: (field reporter, 2007, select games)
- Jeff Brantley: (analyst, 2002-2005)
- Dave Campbell: (analyst, 1990-2002)
- Bob Carpenter: (play-by-play, 1990-2004)
- Duke Castiglione: (field reporter, 2006)
- Orel Hershiser: (analyst, 2001 and 2006-2007)
- Buck Martinez: (analyst, 1992-2000 and 2002-2005)
- Joe Morgan: (analyst, 1990-present, select games)
- Dave O'Brien: (play-by-play, 2008-present)
- Steve Phillips: (analyst, 2007)
- Jon Sciambi: (play-by-play, 2005)
- Dan Shulman: (play-by-play, 1995-2007)
- Rick Sutcliffe: (analyst, 2008-present)
- Note: From 1990 till 2005, the Wednesday night telecast appeared as a doubleheader. That is why there are two pairings of play-by-play commentators and analysts listed from those years.
The program debuted in 1990
, when ESPN first acquired MLB rights
. From 2000
, Wednesday night baseball doubleheaders usually aired at 7pm ET on ESPN and 10pm ET on ESPN2, though this could have changed depending on ESPN's programming schedule. The second part of the doubleheader was discontinued after 2005
Wednesdays also included an afternoon game, called ESPN DayGame which aired typically at 12:30pm or 1pm ET on ESPN, making Wednesdays ESPN's primary day of baseball, as games aired both in the afternoon and in primetime. However, ESPN DayGame was also discontinued following the 2006 season.