bob costas
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Bob Costas, at 70 years old, has kind of lost his spark calling baseball games.

You could tell during Friday’s afternoon broadcast of the Yankees and Guardians in Game 2 of the ALDS. Costas and former Mets pitcher Ron Darling are in the booth for TBS and in the sixth inning, the veteran broadcaster made a key mistake.

As Cleveland ace Shane Bieber squared off against Giancarlo Stanton, Costas referred to the right-hander by a different name: Justin Bieber.

Okay, fine. It’s an easy mistake to make. Bieber’s an uncommon enough name that Canadian pop star/bad boy Justin Bieber had a monopoly on it for over a decade.

Except, Bob Costas has always been a sports broadcaster. Never has he had to do a Top 10 Countdown on MTV or VH1. I get it’s an honest mistake, but come on. That’s still a pretty bad slip.

Not to mention, the two could not be more different. Justin Bieber tortures our eardrums with sappy ballads like “Baby,” while Shane Bieber wows us with an elite pitch mix. Justin has two Grammys, but Shane won the AL Cy Young with a 1.63 ERA in 2020. It’s not just how Bob Costas made such a ridiculous mistake, but how dare he???

Call me a grumpy old man, but Justin Bieber and Shane Bieber don’t even belong in the same sentence despite a shared last name. In fact, that previous sentence is the last time we’ll ever do that. ESNY and all its associated partners apologize for committing such a travesty, and with apologies to all the Bieliebers.

As for Bob Costas? Well, let’s just hope that his monotone broadcast and slip of the tongue haven’t mushed the Yankees’ World Series hopes.

Follow ESNY on Twitter @elitesportsny.


Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.