Orioles announcer Jon Miller is leaning toward rejecting an offer from ESPN to do a second baseball game each week for the cable network and will sign a two-year contract with the American League team, broadcasting sources report.
Miller, 38, has been the radio play-by-play voice of the Orioles since 1983. His contract with the team expires at the end of this season. He's in the first year of a four-year contract with ESPN and is seen on Sunday night telecasts only.
Miller did not confirm the report. "I wouldn't like to leave the Orioles," he said, "and I'm hoping they don't want me to leave."
As part of the new deal with the Orioles, Miller could move into the television booth -- with Home Team Sports and WMAR- TV-2 -- in addition to his radio work.
BIG EAST FEAST:
When Providence meets Boston College Dec. 11 on ESPN, it will be the first of 33 Big East Conference basketball games on national television.
ESPN is planning to show 20 league games and CBS 13 overall, including six intersectional games and two days of the conference tournament at Madison Square Garden. That doesn't include regional coverage on the Big East Network and the NCAA tournament in March. Georgetown goes nationwide at least 11 times.
ESPN has added Steve Cyphers as its Baltimore-Washington area correspondent, starting this month. Cyphers has been an anchor-reporter for KSL-TV in Salt Lake City since 1985, winning Utah's sportscaster of the year award in 1988.
The network also has signed Jim Bergamo, from KHTV in Houston, as a studio anchor, and Mark Schwarz, from WJXT-TV in Jacksonville, Fla., as a West Coast correspondent.
Former Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler has moved from the CBS broadcast booth to CNN's anchor desk and will appear on "The NFL Preview Show" Sundays at 11:30 a.m., starting Sept. 2. Said CNN Vice President Bill MacPhail, "Getting Ken is definitely a coup, and we welcome him."
Baltimore radio station WBSB-FM (B-104) is sponsoring a Jim Palmer Appreciation Day rally today at noon at the National Aquarium in Baltimore. Palmer, Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke and Orioles pitcher Jeff Ballard will attend.
JAY FOR SKIP:
Longtime NBC announcer and George Washington graduate Jay Randolph will replace Skip Caray on TBS's road telecasts of the Atlanta Braves. Caray is preparing for Turner Broadcasting's inaugural season of Sunday night NFL games. TNT makes its NFL debut Sunday at 8 with Minnesota at Cleveland.
Williams (Mass.) College senior Ted Rogers, a football all-American and a lacrosse player from Chevy Chase and Landon School, will film two anti-drug spots next week for broadcast during NCAA tournaments.