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Exclusive Q&A: YES Network’s Ed Delaney

Just as the Yankees have improved their game, so has the YES Network enhanced its broadcasts.

For example, this season the TV home of the Bronx Bombers became the first cable network to add Sony’s HDC-33 HD 3X slow-motion camera to its lineup of production tools for baseball coverage. The resulting images have allowed viewers and announcers alike to do motion analysis and to get a better view of close plays.

Behind this and many other production decisions at YES (which stands for Yankees Entertainment and Sports) stands Ed Delaney, YES VP of operations. The complete version of this interview with him can be found in the September, 2007, issue of Television Broadcast.

Q: How many games does YES produce each year?

Delaney: We do 150 Yankee games a year, 20 of which we produce for WPIX’s over-the-air broadcasts New York; the other 130 are for YES. We also produce about 80 New York Nets games, some Ivy League football, plus some studio-audience and talk shows.

Q: Who made the decision to buy the Sony HD cameras?

Delaney: I was a big proponent of this one. The price point was rather large because we needed to buy not only the cameras and the lenses, but an EVS server as well. I was pushing and sold it down the hallway. My boss, [YES president for production and programming] John Filippelli saw the value of it right away.

Q: Do the fans appreciate it?

Delaney: If you’ve seen it you know they do. As a guy slides into second base you see each speck of dirt popping up, each blade of grass. We often find that we’ll be in our suite at Yankee Stadium and people will be huddled around the HD television set instead of looking directly at the game.

Q: Have advertisers reacted?

Delaney: Yes, sometimes we get sponsorship for these shots, which we identify in our broadcasts.

Q: Can these shots decide plays?

Delaney: Yes, they often provide the definitive replay. If you’re looking at a close play at second base, and you’re on that super slo mo, and we got a tight shot of the bag, and the hand coming in, and the player sliding in head first—you’re gonna see whether he was safe or out.