Press Releases

Films and Documentaries

30 for 30 Podcasts Return for Season Four October 16

By     

Posted on

Audio Trailer Debuts Today Announcing Topics including Baseball, Poker and Marathon Running

ESPN Films’ 30 for 30 Podcasts will return for a fourth season with five all-new audio documentaries. The first episode will debut on Tuesday, Oct. 16, with the other four premiering every Tuesday through November 13. Additionally, the season four audio trailer debuted today in the 30 for 30 Podcasts feed as well as across all ESPN podcasts. Listen to the trailer and previous seasons now at ESPN Audio’s podcenter or at 30for30podcasts.com.

“We’re incredibly proud that, over our first several seasons, we’ve brought our growing audience such a wide range of stories, including last season’s five-part investigation into Bikram yoga” said Jody Avirgan, ESPN Films’ host and senior producer of 30 for 30 podcasts. “This season, we’re back to individual documentaries about a range of different sports. Some of these are new lenses on familiar topics, like telling Jose Canseco’s story via the writing of a book, and the protest at the 1972 marathon. These are amazing moments we’re excited to rescue from the annals of history and share with listeners.”

Episode Summaries:

“Juiced” (produced by ESPN Films, reported by Andrew Mambo) – October 16

By the end of his major league career, Jose Canseco was a baseball pariah. With no team willing to sign the self-proclaimed “godfather of the steroid era,” Canseco sought his revenge by conceiving a tell-all memoir in which he would name every player he knew had used performance-enhancing drugs. Juiced went from pitch to New York Times Bestseller in less than a year. Within a month of publication, the book had sparked a congressional hearing. This story tells the wild ride of the book’s transformation from idle revenge fantasy to publishing sensation through the personal experiences of the in-over-his-head editor and veteran ghost writer tasked with collaborating with the mercurial slugger. Key figures featured in this podcast: Jose Canseco; Judith Regan, once called “the world’s most successful publisher”; Steve Kettman, ‘Juiced’ ghostwriter

“All In: Sparking the Poker Boom” (produced by ESPN Films, reported by Keith Romer) – October 23

The 2003 World Series of Poker was a comedy of errors. Internet qualifiers like 27-year-old accountant Chris Moneymaker were offered up as sacrifices to the grizzled veterans of the poker circuit. The host casino, Binion’s Horseshoe, teetered on the edge of bankruptcy, while a television producer with no experience filming poker set out to capture a game he didn’t understand. In the end, the seven episode television series (featuring “hole cam” shots of the cards and close-ups of the poker pros), starring the unlikely champion with the even unlikelier last name, rocketed Chris Moneymaker, and poker, to a place in the public eye that no one thought possible. Key figures featured in this podcast: Chris Moneymaker, WSOP analyst Norman Chad, poker legends Johnny Chan, Doyle Brunson and Phil Hellmuth

“Six Who Sat” (produced by Transmitter Media; narrated by Hillary Frank) – October 30

In the 1960s and ‘70s, female endurance athletes were either treated as second class citizens or barred entirely from participating in the world’s great marathons. But, at the 1972 New York City Marathon, six women gathered at the starting line to challenge that unequal treatment. For ten minutes, the women staged a sit-down strike, refusing to begin the race. A photo of the protest, published in a big New York Times spread, sent shockwaves through the running world and set in motion a shift of consciousness towards female athletes still felt today. Key figures featured in this podcast: Legendary runners Kathrine Switzer and Nina Kuscsik

“The Loophole” (produced by Makuhari Media, reported by Andrew Muscato) – November 6
In the winter of 1995, Major League Baseball was desperate to recover from a player strike that had soured many fans on the game. Meanwhile, across the Pacific, Japanese star pitcher Hideo Nomo was, with the help of his agent, hatching a risky plan to do what no Japanese player had done since 1964 – make the jump to Major League Baseball. The stakes were high. If their plan went awry, it could end Nomo’s career, make him a villain in his homeland, and prevent every other Japanese player from having a shot at joining MLB. “The Loophole” reveals how they pulled it off, launched “Nomo-mania,” helped invigorate America’s pastime, and transformed both American and Japanese baseball forever. Key figures featured in this podcast: Mike Piazza, Hideo Nomo’s catcher with the Dodgers; Don Nomura, Nomo’s agent; Peter O’Malley, former Dodgers Owner

“Rickey Won’t Quit” (produced by Pineapple Street Media, narrated by The Undefeated’s Clinton Yates) – November 13

When, at age 42, Rickey Henderson registered his 3,000th hit, many of his teammates and friends assumed retirement couldn’t be very far away. They couldn’t have been more wrong. Henderson refused to hang up his spikes, playing two disappointing seasons on the Red Sox and Dodgers, before finally landing on the San Diego Surf Dawgs of the independent Golden Baseball League. At age 46, Rickey Henderson wouldn’t, or couldn’t, quit, insisting that he still had what it took to get back to the majors. “Rickey Won’t Quit” tells the story of a baseball legend doing everything he can to keep playing the game he loves, whether or not it will ever love him back. Key figures featured in this podcast: former A’s general manager Billy Beane; Rickey’s agent Jeff Borris; ESPN commentator Bomani Jones

About 30 for 30 Podcasts

30 for 30 Podcasts, from ESPN Films and ESPN Audio, are original audio documentaries from the makers of the acclaimed 30 for 30 film series, featuring stories from the world of sports and beyond. The show offers captivating storytelling for sports fans and general interest listeners alike, going beyond the field to explore how sports, competition, athleticism and adventure affect our lives and our world. The first two seasons featured stories about NBA activism, NFL video games, polar exploration, Olympic failure and more; the third season was devoted to the complicated world of Bikram yoga. The series has been recognized by the NYF International Radio Awards, the Webby Awards, and the RTDNA Kaleidoscope Awards, as well as included on numerous “best-of” lists from press outlets such as The Atlantic, Vulture, TIME and Entertainment Weekly. Episodes have also been featured on NPR, 99% Invisible, CBC, Slate Podcasts and elsewhere.

About ESPN Radio

ESPN Radio, the country’s largest sports radio network, ESPN Deportes Radio, ESPNRadio.com, and ESPN Podcasts comprise ESPN Audio. ESPN Radio, which launched January 1, 1992, provides more than 9,000 hours of talk and event content annually, reaching 20 million listeners a week on 500 nationwide stations, including more than 375 full-time affiliates and clearance in the top 25 markets. ESPN owns and/or operates stations in New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. ESPN Radio programming is also available on SiriusXM and via digital distributors Apple Music, iHeartMedia and TuneIn. ESPN Audio launched its first podcast in 2005, and in 2017 recorded more than 288 million downloads. In December 2017, ESPN podcasts reached five million people, ranking ESPN fourth among podcast producers in America (per Podtrac). The most popular titles include Fantasy Focus Football, The Lowe Post and podcast versions of The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz, First Take, Pardon the Interruption and Around The Horn. Listeners spend more than 3:22 per week listening to ESPN Podcasts. The critically acclaimed “30 for 30” series expanded into podcasting in 2017.

-30-

Contact:

Jay Jay Nesheim, ESPN, 646-547-5839, [email protected]