Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Renegades Media Day

I've been with the Renegades since 2001 (on and off) and amazingly, I've never attended media day. I broke that streak today when I stopped by Dutchess Stadium this morning.

This is as most the team made their way in from the clubhouse.

Director of Media Relations Rick Kubitschek addresses the assembled media to introduce new manager Brady Williams, and discuss the many great promotions the team will do this year - like Ball-Less Baseball, when men aren't allowed in the Stadium for the first five innings. Seriously.

I did a few interviews, including second baseman Tyler Bortnick (#16 in the picture above - click on it for a larger version). He was very polite and called me "sir." I'm so freaking old.

(insert emoticon here)

I'm hoping to air the interviews tomorrow on "The Press Box" as I continue to highlight things around minor league baseball. The team has vowed to get me guests whenever I want.

Today was also my first chance to officially meet new Gades "voice" Geoff Brault. Geoff (in the light blue polo in the above picture) and I seem to have hit it off well - now I'm anxious to see how we do in the booth. I'm only scheduled to do five home games this year (June 21, July 7, 8, and 10, and August 9) but pretty much have the run of the road games if I wish, and Geoff has even offered to let me (and maybe Sean) crash with him. I can't quite predict how many road games I will do yet. I'm hoping to get back to Aberdeen for sure, and Brooklyn, hopefully Staten Island as well. I might try another day-trip to Oneonta. I'd like to go to Vermont and Jamestown also, but those trips could be tall orders. I might need some company on the road.

Who's up for it?

The reason for the lack of home games that I'll do is simple: Geoff did exactly what I would do (and do in the WGCH booth). Geoff selected two interns (Dustin and Matt) who will split up being at the stadium at the number two announcer, and being back in the studio. That was along the lines of my plan. Let's just say Nick Fox, Nick Angotto, Matt Hamilton, Sean Kilkelly, and others would have had open invitations to join me in the booth (Zach Fisher, Eric Loh, and on and on). We would have had a blast.

In this setup, I'll do whatever home games I can, along with some road games. I'm also looking to do some wireless microphone stuff on the nights I'm not in the booth, but we'll see. In many ways, I feel like the old guy among the college-age men (I'm approximating, of course) but I have such a passion for the game and broadcasting as well, so why not join up for another year?

Besides, Sean loves it. He was heartbroken when it looked like I wouldn't be with the team again this year.

Speaking of Seans, I'd like to say that while I'm happy to know Geoff and hope we have a great '09 season, I am going to miss working with Sean Ford. I'll stay out of the politics of the business and purely say that Sean was incredible to me. He was extremely supportive, and truly considered me his partner in the booth, though he was always the "voice" of the Gades. Sean and I had a chemistry that was rare, and I don't doubt I'll be fine with the new team; it's just different and that's fine. Sean was beyond gracious, allowing me to call games immediately after we met. He and I remain friends, and I look forward to welcoming him on "The Press Box" to get his take on the Red Sox and such.

Life, baseball, and such go on. Here's to the 2009 Renegades.

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