On The Weekend Watch: PLAY BALL -- If past years are any indication, the besbaseball action of the year on television will be provided by the league championship playoffs rather than the World Series. And tonight's the night for the National League, with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds squaring off in Game 1 in Cincinnati (at 8, Channel 11). Game 2 is due tomorrow (3 p.m.). And unlike recent years, when the playoffs and World Series switch-hit lTC between networks, all post-season action is on CBS. Jack Buck and former catcher Tim McCarver call the National League action, and Dick Stockton and former pitcher Jim Kaat call the American League games, scheduled at 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
TAKE A WALK -- For those viewers not enchanted by the horsehide opera, the clearest female-aimed counter programming comes on Sunday night. NBC steps to bat (9 p.m., Channel 2) with a three-part miniseries from the passion prose of Jackie Collins: "Lucky/Chances," with Vincent Irizarry, Nicollette Sheridan and a bunch of other soap stars. If you missed the book, it is set in the world of gambling casinos. ABC's offering is "When You Remember Me" (also 9 p.m., Channel 13) with Fred ("The Wonder Years") Savage as a young man suffering from muscular dystrophy who must fight for his rights.
THE EARTH IN PERIL -- PBS tonight offers a preview (at 8, channels 22 and 67) of an upcoming ambitious environmental series, "Race to Save the Planet." Actress Meryl Streep, who has been active in environmental concerns in her Connecticut home community, hosts the globally focused, solution-oriented series, which continues in two-hour blocks at 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday.
WHAT'S NEW? -- Tonight marks the debut of a new Fox network sitcom, "Beverly 90210," at 8:30 on Channel 45. A weak twist on the old "Beverly Hillbillies," here it is sassy Midwestern teen-age twins (Jason Priestly and Shannen Doherty) who must adjust to a move to, like, West Beverly Hills, dudes. Returning shows with season premieres (check listings for details) include "Grand" on NBC tonight, PBS' "Great Performances" on Friday, "Superboy" on Saturday (Channel 54) and "21 Jump Street" on Sunday (Channel 45, now in syndicated first-run after cancellation by Fox). Also worth noting in the context of new fare is a 10 p.m. special Friday on channels 22 and 67: "The 1990 Fall Season Preview" of regular PBS series, including "Mystery!" "Wonderworks" and "Nova."
THE CABLE CONNECTION -- Both Showtime and HBO offer new stand-up comedy specials this weekend. At 10 p.m. Saturday on HBO, it's "Robert Wuhl's World Tour," an hour-long comedy routine from Cleveland. (Hmmm. Having once lived in Cleveland, Media Monitor has trouble remembering anything funny ever happening there.) And at 10:30 on Showtime comes a half-hour set from Canadian comic Michael McDonald.