As the Pittsburgh Pirates prepare to launch their 2010 season, the National League team is batting .500 in its offseason campaign to increase its media presence in the Mahoning Valley.
For the first time in several years, Pirates fans here will be able to listen to games on the radio. Cumulus Youngstown has announced that station WLLF-FM 96.7 in Sharon will carry Pirates games beginning with Monday’s home opener against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Also on Monday, WLLF will become an ESPN radio affiliate.
Another Cumulus station, WBBW-AM 1240 in Youngstown, will continue to be an ESPN affiliate but will not carry Pirates games.
The WLLF signal is strong enough to be picked up by most Mahoning Valley radios.
As for television, the news is mixed for Pirates fans. In January, FOX Sports Pittsburgh, the regional cable-TV channel that carries 120 Pirates games and about 70 Pittsburgh Penguins games each year, launched a campaign to persuade Time Warner to add FSN Pittsburgh to its systems in Northeast Ohio.
So far, Time Warner hasn’t budged, meaning that cable-TV subscribers in Youngstown and most of Trumbull County again will not have access to regional telecasts of Pirates and Penguins games.
Time Warner has cited cost as the reason it won’t add FSN Pittsburgh.
FSN Pittsburgh has shifted its focus to promoting a satellite TV package, suggesting that Pirates and Penguins fans who don’t have FSN Pittsburgh consider switching from cable to the DIRECTTV Choice programming package.
For more information, visit www.directv.com or call 1-800-DIRECTV.