March 2012

Day 2 in the Fort: Game Recap/Morning Update

The Portland Sea Dogs Facebook Page has photos from my Spring Training trip.

Game Recap: Sea Dogs defeated the New Britain Rock Cats 5-3 on Saturday afternoon at the Twins’ Complex.  Pawtucket lost to Rochester 6-2.  Portland had 13 hits, receiving homers from Bryce Brentz (1-for-3) and Jeremy Hazelbaker (3-for-5).  Brentz clubbed a two-run homer in the third inning and Hazelbaker’s solo-shot led off the ninth.

Bryce Brentz receiving congratulations from potential teammates in Portland this year - Reynaldo Rodriguez and Oscar Tejeda.

Oscar Tejeda drove in two runs, clocking a first inning double down the left-field line.  Heiker Meneses had three hits, and scored twice.  Anthony Ranaudo faced two batters, but apparently left the game with a non-arm injury.  I saw him walking around the complex, and he looked fine.  Marco Duarte and Jeremiah Bayer (Greenfield, Mass) finished out the game in relief.  The minor league teams have a Camp Day on Sunday.

Interview with former Sea Dog Aaron Bates…one of the best guys you’ll ever meet More about my morning….

What an amazing second day in Ft. Myers.  My weekly talk show, the Saturday Morning Jab (96.3 FM in Portland, Maine), took place live from JetBlue Park.  The Red Sox Media Relations’ Department set me up in one of the auxiliary broadcast booths, giving me a gorgeous view of the inaugural park. It was not surprising to see people lining up a 9:00 AM, looking for tickets for today’s game against the Phillies.  That’s Red Sox Nation.  It’s incredible.

A very cool feature at Jet Blue Park

Once again, I can’t say enough about how great the Red Sox media has been to me every time I’m in Ft. Myers.  Brian McPherson of the Providence Journal and Jon Rish (Red Sox Radio Network) were nice enough to join me on the show.  The feeling of being on the air at 8 AM, looking out to a cathedral is hard to describe (and I talk for a living).  During Red Sox batting practice, former Sea Dogs’ Manager Arnie Beyeler threw to Group 1, which included: Jacoby Ellsbury, Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis.  The Red Sox had a tough afternoon against the Phillies, including a rough start from Alfredo Aceves.  This will make for some great sports talk radio on Monday.

Former Red Sox Catcher Rich Gedman chatting with long-time Twins' Manager Tom Kelly.

First Report 7:45 AM

In about 35 minutes, my weekly talk show begins live from JetBlue Park at Fenway South.  I’m very thankful to the Big Jab and the Red Sox for help making this possible.  I can’t put into words how amazing this is.  I’m sitting two booths down from the Red Sox radio booth.  Show is live online at thebigjab.com or 96.3 FM in Portland, Maine.  I’m hoping to land a few members of the Boston media as they trickle in this morning.  Later today, I’ll be heading over to the Minnesota Twins complex with PawSox broadcaster Aaron Goldsmith, taking in the Double-A and Triple-A games.  My interview goal today is former Sea Dogs’ Aaron Bates and Ray Chang.

The Red Sox radio booth

View from the Monster Seats at JetBlue Park

First Day in Town

The view is just amazing

Wow, that’s all I have to say about JetBlue Park at Fenway South.  To the right is a  glimpse from the Press Box.  I’m doing my Saturday Morning talk show live from the park tomorrow.   The numbers to call in; 207-775-2217 or 1-866-811-9505.  Email address is mike@thebigjab.com.

Update on today’s games: The AA & AAA games moved up to 12:30, so I was there just in time.  The Sea Dogs beat Bowie 10-6 and Pawtucket lost to Norfolk 5-3.

  • Former Sea Dogs playing for Pawtucket: Jeremy Hazelbaker, Che-Hsuan Lin, Jorge Padron, Matt Spring, Jon Hee, Juan-Carlos Linares, Will Middlebrooks, Michael Lee, Josue Peley, Caleb Clay and Juan Bermudez.
  • Ryan Sweeney went back and forth between Portland and Pawtucket to get extra at-bats.  During Spring Training, the rules differ a bit for the Minor League games.  Usually if a big league guy is playing, he’ll lead-off every inning.
  • Caught up with Brock Huntzinger and Chris Balcom-Miller, and we mainly talked about the crazy weather in the Northeast.  Hopefully we’ll have that on Opening Day.
  • Had a great conversation with Sea Dogs’ Pitching Coach Bob Kipper, he’s looking forward to the season, and has worked extra hard this spring.  Manager Kevin Boles and Hitting Coach Dave Joppie are leading the Pawtucket coaching staff, while Arnie Beyeler continues to spend time with the big league club.

I’ll be checking in tomorrow after the Sea Dogs play New Britain at the Twins’ Complex.

Countdown is on, follow my former broadcast partner

Not surprised to wake up this morning, expecting to hear more Peyton Manning talk, but shocked that he’s already signed.  Seems like the NFL is starting to steal our baseball coverage, we need to stop this.  The weather in Portland is amazing, reaching the 70 mark over the weekend.  According to weather.com, there’s only a 10 degree difference between Ft. Myers and Hadlock Field.

Speaking of Spring Training, I’ll be leaving early Friday morning for Ft. Myers, and staying until the 28th.  On Saturday, I’ll be doing my talk show live from JetBlue Park at Fenway South.  This will be my first full day at the park, so I’ll be in awe the entire four hours.  Here’s the information to get on the show: 207-775-2217 or toll-free: 1-866-811-9505.  Or you can send me an e-mail at seadogsradio@gmail.com.

For Spring Training coverage of the Red Sox Minor League system, I urge you to follow my former broadcast partner Aaron Goldsmith was named the “Voice of the PawSox” this off-season.  Today is Aaron’s first day in Ft. Myers, his blog and twitter updates are outstanding.  Here’s the link to his blog.

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Former Sea Dog Tim Federowicz during 2011 Spring Training...Tim was traded last July 31st in the Erik Bedard deal.

Would love some ideas for the broadcast.  One year we had someone request more updates on former Sea Dogs’ players, so we created an alumni Saturday.  The listeners are first priority.

Can’t wait for the season!

Mike

Follow me on twitter @seadogsradio

My longest rain delay involved Kevin Youkilis – how about a new TV?

So how about this Monday morning?  I know it’s tough getting up to start a new work week, but 63 degrees in Old Orchard Beach, Maine.  Hopefully some of you had a planned day off, and are enjoying the sunshine.  It doesn’t have to be  in the 60’s to put us in the baseball mood.  As soon as pitchers & catchers report to Ft. Myers, our juices get flowing for the 2012 season opener.  As the Sea Dogs prepare for their exhibition opener on Wednesday in Florida, the front office continues their intense preparation in Portland, Maine.  A few days ago, the Sea Dogs announced this amazing promotion, which starts on June 29th.   Yes, Flat screen televisions will be given away.  I’m not sure I could survive without my High-Definition TV.

  • Somebody asked me last week, “How long was the longest rain delay you ever sat through?”  It was very easy to remember – 2001.  I was working for the Utica Blue Sox then, and we were playing the final game of a 4-game series in Lowell.  The Manager for the Spinners was Arnie Beyeler and the Blue Sox Manager was Kevin Boles.  I remember this day so clearly, and I do remember the 2001 season, especially since I was living in New York (not close to home), my parents made the trip to Lowell for the game that was originally planned for 5:00 PM.  They sat with me during the rain delay for about three hours, and finally left when they figured there was no way we would play.  So after 4 hours and 45 minutes, we started the game at 9:45 PM.  Also, the Lowell Spinners were nice enough to put us up in their team hotel for an extra night.

    Former Sea Dog Kevin Youkilis batted third in a game that was delayed 4 hours and 4 minutes due to rain.

  • If you look at the photo below, you’ll see that Kevin Youkilis batted third for Lowell, and went 1-for-3 with a 2-run single.  It’s amazing years later that I would be linked to both managers here in Portland, and that Youkilis would go on to a great career with the Red Sox.  This was one of those lasting memories, plus the Blue Sox lost the game 11-3.
  • Make sure to follow Elizabeth Dreeson on Twitter @Eli_Dreesox.  With the minor league exhibition season starting on Wednesday, Elizabeth will update all the happenings from minor league camp.
  • Great blog by my former broadcast partner and good friend – http://pawsoxblog.mlblogs.com/2012/03/09/futures-at-fenway-to-feature-pawsox-spinners/
  • Quick take on Peyton Manning.  I think San Francisco and Houston would be his best shot at winning a Super Bowl.  Two teams with Super Bowl defenses.

Keeping up the Monday Tradition

About a month ago, I decided that Monday would be the day to update my blog until the start of the season.   The start of my season is officially April 5th in Reading, but I’m heading down to Ft. Myers on March 23rd, so you’ll be hearing a lot about me through this blog.

What a view of Fenway South

I got great news this week about my weekly talk show on 96.3 FM (Portland, Maine) and thebigjab.com.  I’ll be doing my show live from JetBlue Park on March 24th.   The best part of heading down south is the weather.  After a winter in Maine, that warm Florida breeze that you feel after leaving the airport is priceless.

With Spring Training games in full force, I can’t resist from watching almost every inning.  Despite the Red Sox playing BC on Saturday, I still watched the entire game.  This is a true test of how much we all love this game.  My favorite part of Spring Training is watching players I’ve seen the year earlier in the Eastern League.  Hopefully we’ll see some surprises from Double-A land on a big league roster soon.

Crazy how bad things have gotten for Lenny Dykstra, here’s the latest from the former New York Met – http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/story/17603190/exmet-dykstra-seeks-to-withdraw-no-contest-plea

Back in the day –  On this day in Baseball History 1922: Babe Ruth signs a three-year contract with the Yankees for $52,000 per season! $1,000 per week!

Here’s more information the Sea Dogs luncheon that I’ll be hosting on March 30th – http://portland.seadogs.milb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20120223&content_id=26819528&vkey=news_t546&fext=.jsp&sid=t546

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