NEW YORK (AP) - National League fans better make sure their cable hookups are working.
Major league baseball released its schedule for the first round of the playoffs Monday, and only one NL game is to be telecast on Fox or NBC - Game 3 between Florida and San Francisco Friday at 8 p.m. EDT on NBC.
The American League is off that night, forcing NBC to choose an NL game. The other NL first-round games will all be shown on ESPN, either in the afternoon or at 11 p.m.
Fox and NBC, which choose which games they want to telecast, sided with the AL and the New York market and the Juniors - Ken Griffey and Cal Ripken.
All five Yankees-Indians games will be broadcast on networks in prime time, starting with Tuesday's opener at 8 p.m. on Fox. Game 2 is for 8 p.m. Thursday on Fox; Game 3 Saturday at 7:30 p.m. on NBC; Game 4 Sunday on Fox at 7:30; and Game 5 Monday on Fox at 8 p.m.
Game 1 of the Orioles-Mariners series is on NBC Wednesday at 8 p.m. and Game 3 will be on Fox at 4:30 p.m. Saturday. The other three games will be shown at 4 p.m. on ESPN on Thursday, Sunday and Monday.
All ESPN games will be simulcast with over-the-air broadcasts in each club's home market.
If either AL series ends in three games, the schedule for Sunday's games could change. Also, if the Baltimore-Seattle series goes five games and the Cleveland-New York series has ended, Fox will broadcast the Orioles-Mariners Game 5 Monday at 8 p.m.
The second round will be on networks, with NBC taking the NL and Fox the AL. NBC will telecast the entire World Series beginning Saturday, Oct. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
The Atlanta Braves, who are in the playoffs for the sixth consecutive season, will have their entire series with the Houston Astros shown on ESPN, beginning Tuesday at 1 p.m.
"Atlanta is always a compelling story, because they are always the favorite," says ESPN announcer Jon Miller, who will be broadcasting the series. "The teams played close games all season, so I could see the Astros pulling off an upset. They don't match up over 162 games but in a short series they could."
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