Well, we’re six weeks into the season and the "building" process continues for me in the booth. I’d say that I’m in the framing portion of construction. I wanted to come in and get a solid foundation first. Get to know the crew (the people I work with) and the Crew (the Brewers). With each game, I get more and more comfortable.
I realize it might seem like it’s just Bill and me and all of the pretty pictures but in reality, there are ton of people behind the scenes who bring you Brewers TV. Producer John Walsh and director Mitch Riggin are the leaders in the truck. Both are super-talented and our crew at Miller Park is outstanding. I have a soft spot for camera operators since I started in this business toting an Ikegami 79 on my shoulder. Our "eyes" behind the lenses are superb. As you watch, be mindful of the skill and effort it takes to capture and deliver the most important images and sounds of the ever-evolving story on the field. When you see the fire in Prince Fielder’s eyes, there is an operator behind that lens understanding that reaction is part of the story. When you hear a ball "thud" off the outfield wall, think about the individual who planted the microphone there. The sights and sounds of Brewers baseball all come together in the truck and with split second decisions, delivered to your television. Our crew deserves big props.
Already, I feel very comfortable working at Miller Park. The more I settle in to a routine, the more I trust my instincts and I hope it’s starting to show up on the air. I’d say one of the biggest challenges for me right now is judging fly balls in big league parks. Working in the minors, if the wind blew in, the wind blew in! There are no upper decks to deal with. Up here, the wind blowing in from left, might mean it whips around the upper deck and jet streams out to right. Swirling winds and ballpark nuances are tricky. I’m an expert in understanding flight patterns of fly balls in the Texas League…but that does me no good in the National League! I’m learning on the fly.
For example, at Miller Park, the elements change depending on whether the panels are open or closed, whether the roof is open or closed…or any combination of the two. Road games take a little extra effort, too. Every park we go to is a first for me. Sightlines change, the booth setup is different and ballpark nuances take some getting used to. I try to watch fly balls during batting practice but until I get some more games under my belt around the league, there’s going to be an adjustment period.
Otherwise, all is well and I really appreciate all of the kind words. This is the greatest job in the world. The New Brew Crew has been an absolute joy to cover. A winning teams raises everyones spirits. The execution has been most impressive. I’ve called over a thousand ballgames in the minor leagues but I have never seen the game of baseball being played so well.
Hope you’re enjoying it too. Have a great week.
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