NEW YORK – OCTOBER 19: Pitcher Curt Schilling #38 of the Boston Red Sox grabs at his ankle as it appears to be bleeding in the fourth inning during game six of the American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees on October 19, 2004 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

It’s aired on ESPN and ESPN Classic numerous times. Boston Red Sox fans love rewatching the 30 for 30 documentary “Four Days in October” chronicling the historic four game comeback against the New York Yankees after being down 0-3 in the 2004 American League Championship Series. Interesting looking back now, it has two former ESPN employees in the film, Bill Simmons and Curt Schilling.

The 30 for 30 aired Sunday afternoon on ESPN2 in anticipation of the Yankees-Red Sox game on Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN. But a funny thing happened during the re-air. One particular segment was missing and it was Game 6 of the ALCS which was a pivotal game in the Red Sox comeback. That was the game where then-Red Sox hurler Curt Schilling pitched wearing a bloody sock in the wake of having surgery to correct a sprained ankle earlier in the 2004 postseason.

In the wake of his recent firing from ESPN, it certainly looked like more than a coincidence in the eyes of Red Sox and other sharp-eyed fans:

This all caught Schilling’s attention and of course, he responded on Twitter:

But ESPN had a simple explanation for it all. It said the Arizona-Oregon softball game which aired before “Four Days in October” ran long so one segment had to be edited out of the documentary in order for ESPN2 to hit its next program on time. An ESPN spokesman issued the following statement:

“When a live event runs long, it’s standard procedure to shorten a taped program that follows. In this case, we needed to edit out one of the film’s four segments to account for the extra length of the softball game.”

And that explanation did not sit well with the fans either:

But Paulsen at Sports Media Watch who does not have a dog in this fight probably had the most level-headed thoughts:

Fans in New England have a genuine mistrust of ESPN due to its reporting of the Deflategate story on the New England Patriots and Tom Brady so this edit, legitimate or not, certainly doesn’t help its standing in the region.

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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