Time Out, episode 134

This tape features a 1984 episode of "Time Out," a weekly sports program that is hosted by a number of Chicago area journalists and sportscasters. This week's commentators are award winning sports columnist John Schulian, WBMX Sportscaster and Assistant Coach for DePaul University's Men's Basketball team Kenny McReynolds, WIND reporter Fran Spielman, and former NBA star John Mengelt.

00:00Copy video clip URL This tape begins with a countdown and promos.

00:42Copy video clip URL Opening sequence for the program.

01:05Copy video clip URL Dissolve into a shot of the four commentators in the back room of the “Time Out” television set. The narrator gives a brief overview of the episode which includes: a visit to the Wrigley Field bleachers to speak with Bill Veeck, an interview with two sports editors from the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times, an inside look at the vendors of Wrigley Field, and an NFL game preview from Chicago Bears Safety Gary Fencik.

01:54Copy video clip URL The four commentators begin the show by talking about the Chicago Cubs clinching the pennant. They also talk about the Cubs’ first round playoff opponent the San Diego Padres. This cuts into a segment with Bill Veeck at Wrigley Field.

04:21Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of a shirtless Bill Veeck in the Wrigley Field bleachers. Veeck vents his frustrations about the fact that many die hard Cubs fans won’t be able to see the Cubs at Wrigley Field during the playoffs because of the lack of tickets available for the general public. “Cubs fans are smart. They know where the best seats are: here, not there (points to the lower deck). Now the only thing that I’m upset about is that when the playoffs and the World Series come, then what will you think will happen, very simple. These bleachers would be filled with guys with three piece suits with their [inaudible] and their hat, not this kind of hat (lifts up his hat). No, no… a fedora.” Veeck goes on to make a few more philosophical comments about the game of baseball and Wrigley Field. “Look, baseball is still the greatest game there is. No matter how badly you play it, if you play in the Major Leagues you play well enough to make an interesting game. Owners have made one great mistake I think of selling the game on the won and lost column. In other words if you weren’t in first place you couldn’t be good. In baseball, the last place club beats the first place club more often than in any other game.” When asked about the luster of Wrigley Field, Veeck responds, “This is the best ball park in the country. It’s the most beautiful ball park. It is the one ball park in which the fans are an absolute part of the game, a participant rather than spectators. … This is the epitome of pleasure.”

06:00Copy video clip URL Cut back to the four commentators who continue to stay on the subject of the Cubs. Schulian first gives a toast to some of the lesser known Cubs players of the past. He names off many former Cubs players before closing with a poignant remark about what those players meant to the city. “Here’s to all the Cubs who looked to the world, the outside world, like they were bums but were really something more. Because in a city where ‘L’ trains sometimes fall from their tracks, and Mayors peddle the lakefront to their feckless sons, and mass murderers sometimes seem more numerous than winter snowflakes, you guys were the one civic disaster we learned to love.” Shortly afterwards, Spielman introduces a segment on the vendors of Wrigley Field.

08:22Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of  Jim Gwizdala and Bob Chicoine, beer vendors at Wrigley Field, who are showcasing their beer pouring skills. Chicoine says that Old Style is the beer of choice in Chicago. Yolanda Soto states that on the previous day, beer vendors sold $48,000 worth of alcohol. Hot dog vendor Bob Zelken describes the inner workings of the vendors’ operation. The “Time Out” crew visits with a few other vendors before the segment ends.

10:34Copy video clip URL Cut back to the four commentators who continue to talk about the Cubs’ clinching of the National League East and the media’s involvement in the matter. This cuts into a interview with two editors from the Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times.

11:16Copy video clip URL Standing behind the bar over a couple of glasses of beer, Bill Veeck interviews Tom Cunningham of the Sun-Times and Gene Quinn of the Tribune. The three talk about the media frenzy and fans’ hysteria that is currently surrounding the Cubs team. They also talk about television’s effect on the newspaper industry. Quinn states, “TV has radically changed the way newspapers have to address what to cover. But newspapers essentially do the same thing they’ve always done; they peek behind the scenes. Television is able to lay out an event for you and can supply commentators that reiterate what’s going on in the pictures, but because of the attention span of a television viewer, they can’t provide long accounts of the nuances of what makes a sports event fun to watch and important to a city such as the World Series is to Chicago. And that’s why there’s a place for calmness and commentators, and reporters, and feature writers, and editorial writers because you’re able to get into great detail about all the aspects of the event rather than just what’s happening on the field.” This is then followed by the “Time Out Sports Almanac” segment.

17:25Copy video clip URL Cut back to the four commentators who begin to talk about the recent happenings in the Big Ten League and the White Sox’s current fifth place standing. This cuts into a segment on the game of Batchi Ball.

19:07Copy video clip URL Quick cut to a shot of a group of older Italian men and women gathering to play the game of Batchi Ball. Spectators watch as players go head to head against one another. Fran Spielman even takes a crack at the game and gets a nice shot.

20:31Copy video clip URL Cut back to the four commentators who quickly introduce a commentary from Bill Veeck.

21:07Copy video clip URL “Time Out” correspondent Roger Wallenstein sits down with Bill Veeck over a few beers to talk about the playoff excitement in Chicago. Veeck states that he believes that the Cubs are going to win the playoffs and begins to talk about the World Series. Veeck states that every World Series has an “unpredictable hero” and begins to speculate about who that player could be this year. Veeck goes on to put his assertion into a historical context by citing some of the heroes of the past.

24:21Copy video clip URL Cut to a shot of Mengelt sitting down with Gary Fencik of the Chicago Bears. The two give a preview of the NFL match ups over the weekend. They make a few predictions as to what teams will be victorious and why. This eventually cuts back to the four commentators who go on to make their predictions for the week. The credits roll shortly afterwards and are followed by a promo.

29:24Copy video clip URL Tape ends.


1 Comment

  1. Erick Rosales says:

    voiceover by marty robinson

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