We are a little over a week until Opening Day. Here are some “nuggets” that we’re looking forward to bringing you on Brewers TV in 2011:
Our on-air and production team remains virtually intact: Bill and I will call the games. Craig Coshun will fill in for me when I leave for TBS weekends. As of now, I’m scheduled to do 10 “Sunday MLB on TBS” games. Seven of the 10 will occur during the first two months of the season.
Dave Nelson and Jerry Augustine will return to “Brewers Live” pre and post game shows as analysts. Craig and Jeff Grayson will host while Telly Hughes is the reporter. The post game instructional’s will continue after home games.
Behind the scenes, the lead producer is the talented young (and bald) Chris Withers and lead director is talented old (and bald) Michael Oddino. Brent Valenti will produce “Brewers Live” pre and post game shows. Michael Vettor is the Coordinating Producer who puts it all together.
New this year, a special 90-minute pre game show for the Home Opener, April 4th.
Some new/returning technology for every game on Fox Sports Wisconsin:
High Definition coverage
Fox-Mo (super slo-mo)
There is also a new on-air “look.” New graphics, animations and a distinctly “Wisconsin” look to them starting Opening Day, March 31.
The music will be new as well with “up and coming” national artists to be featured during the telecasts.
We hope you enjoy our coverage of Brewers baseball this year. It’s an honor for us to enter your space every night for six months. Our final Spring Training TV game will be March 28 on WMLW, then it’s off to the races March 31 in Cincy.
See you on TV
PS. I invite you to click this link to my pal Greg Marshall of The Figureheads. Greg makes significant contributions in our community. He penned a nice piece on his experience with the Brewers in Arizona for our friends at GetActiveToday.com. Let him know what you think.
The off-season turned into the on-season quickly this year. Outside of all the Major League players sitting in the Brewers repair shop, all is well here in Phoenix.
Rock and I are looking forward to a big sponsors weekend at Maryvale. This Friday, March 11, we will host an online chat during our broadcast. I’m not sure how we’re going to pull that off but John Steinmiller will think of something. We look forward to hearing your questions. Just keep ’em short and sweet. I need to be able to read them between pitches.
Ron Roenicke has had quite a bit to deal with in his first month in uniform. I’ve been hearing so many good things about the new Brewers manager. I’m not surprised. I’ve known him since 1997 and my response to those who praise him is, “Just wait.” Just wait, because to truly see what kind of manager he is, wait until times get tough. That’s where you win or lose your players. I’ve seen him “win” these battles for years and I suspect he’ll do the same in Milwaukee.
After one week of games, the biggest surprise is Erick Almonte. There is a bench job open for a righ-handed bat. Almonte can play the corner infield and outfield spots. He could play shortstop in an emergency. Offensively, he’s solid. It’s not just about the numbers, which are good at this point. It’s the approach at the plate. He’s the kind of guy that doesn’t give away at-bats. He uses the entire field, shows power to all fields when ahead in the count and can shorten up and put the ball in play when behind. Coming off the bench is a tough gig and not many hitters can pull it off. If they were that good with the bat, they’d be in the lineup everyday. Water finds its own level. For me, Almonte has already built up enough equity to earn the first shot at that gig. He hit .320 in Nashville last year. In ’09, he hit .291. There is a track record, albeit unconventional, in place. Maybe at 33 years of age, Almonte can write a great “comeback” story.
Speaking of “comeback’s,” here’s another guy I’d like to see get a shot in the big leagues. Check out “The Comeback Kid” video (and others) from B. Reith. I don’t know him but I’ve never heard anyone like him. How this Milwaukee-boy is not all over my TV and Radio is beyond me. Crazy talent. Enjoy.