Be sure to check out CubTalks With Tim Sheridan Episode 4 that just came out today! A little dive into the Public Address Announcer’s world. Remember, every Wednesday a new “CubsTalk” episode arrives here.
Yesterday after finishing a presentation to a Cubs Road Scholar group, I had a voice message on my phone from the Oakland Athletics. The message said, the Athletics P.A. announcer had an emergency and couldn’t announce the game at Hohokam Stadium Wednesday and could I possibly fill in. This was an interesting, but odd opportunity, as the A’s played against the Cubs. The interesting part, I would get to announce again at the place where I announced Cubs games for 17 years. The odd was, it would be for the Cubs opponent!
Just thinking about it made my head spin, how could I low key the Cubs names, when I would be announcing them for the A’s? Out of habit, I would surely on accident say, First Baseman Anthony Rizzzzzzooooo!!! Long story short, I got another text before I had a chance to get back to the A’s, they had found someone to fill in “internally”.
Wish I could have been at that Cubs vs A’s game today, unfortunately I had other obligations. I really would like to have heard the fill in P.A. person at Hohokam. I’d be hoping he, or she, has some experience doing P.A., or at least announcing baseball, as that game looked like a doozy! 23 runs, 28 hits, 3 errors, close to 50 players entering the game, and three and a half hours long…ah spring training. The Cubs lost by a score of 12-11.
After I finished my Road Scholar presentation yesterday afternoon I headed over to Sloan Park to announce the Cubs vs Reds night game that started at 7:05 pm. Not a pretty game for the home team as the Cubs committed 4 errors and lost 13-4 to a Reds split-squad team who had few regular season starters playing. About the most interesting event of the evening was a pre-game rainbow.
As I had mentioned to the Road Scholar group earlier in the day, I always, always, work at getting players names pronounced correctly. Surprisingly not all teams have pronunciation guides on their rosters. To the Reds credit, they did, but still one name in the starting lineup troubled me – Blake Trahan. The reason was, the Reds pronunciation guide had it spelled as TRUH-haw. Not sure why, but that just didn’t seem right to me. So I went to find the Reds Media Relations person, but nobody was ever in that seat prior to starting lineups. Eventually, I went into the visiting G.M.s suite to ask about the pronunciation.
The person I talked with, (not Reds G.M. Nick Krall), said yes, he thought Trahan pronounced it that way. Although, maybe I should check with the media relations person. Lineups were upon me, no media relations in sight, soooo, I went with it. It wasn’t until the second time I pronounced Trahan’s name TRUH-haw, that one of my coworkers in the booth said, wow, you are pronouncing that with a creole dialect. My coworker Max is from Louisiana and said that is exactly how that name is pronounced down there. A quick internet lookup and sure enough, Trahan is from Lake Charles, Louisiana. My mind was set at ease.
I give Jon Knight and his Sloan Park grounds crew a lot of credit for getting the field ready to play last night, as we had a lot of rain during the day and previous night.
As last night’s game progressed into about the 6th inning, our crew of five in the booth started guessing the attendance of the game. The first guess was in the high 9,000’s, the next came in at 10,400. Another inning goes by and I make a guess of 12,536. Several minutes later over the interior press box public address system, the Cubs media relations department says – tonight’s attendance 12,536! The crew was stunned and suggested we head immediately to Vegas after the game. They didn’t know I had been text the attendance figure about a half inning back… I had to confess to my inside info.
Tomorrow the Cubs play the Rangers at Sloan Park, game time 1:05pm.