You're used to coming to MASN for the very best in Washington Nationals broadcast coverage, and we do our best to televise every Nats game possible in crystal-clear high definition. However, you won't be able to watch the first game of today's doubleheader against the Pittsburgh Pirates on our air.
If you remember, Saturday's first game was the make-up of a game originally scheduled for Tuesday, May 17. Because that game was postponed by rain, it's being made up Saturday as part of a traditional single-admission doubleheader, beginning at 3:35 p.m.
However, this start time - which was the Nationals' choice, not MASN's - places the game in the exclusive window of Major League Baseball rightsholder FOX, which has chosen the 4 p.m. time slot for its weekly broadcast. Today's games are intra-city, interleague matchups between the White Sox and Cubs, and Yankees and Mets. These regional matchups begin at 4:10 p.m. and, while that's after the scheduled first pitch of the Pirates-Nationals first game, it still means MASN can't air the game.
To keep in touch with everything that's going on during that first game, make sure to text NATIONALS to 29292 to join our text-messaging service - we'll try to increase the number of text messages for that game to keep you up to date on what's happening. I'll be at the ballpark, filling in for the vacationing Ben Goessling, and will be blogging throughout the day's action. So even if MASN can't televise the game, MASNsports.com and MASN's text-messaging service will be the places to turn for your in-game information.
Luckily, the exclusive FOX window only affects the opener of the scheduled doubleheader. You'll be able to tune in to the "Nats Xtra" pregame show at 6:30 p.m., with regular broadcast coverage of the nightcap scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., with Bob Carpenter on the play-by-play and F.P. Santangelo on the color commentary. The "Nats Xtra" postgame show will follow the second game and include a wrap-up of both ends of the twinbill.
We're sorry for any confusion these schedule changes cause, and any disruption to your July 4 weekend.