Re: Nuxhall being FORCED out -- Channel 5 Reporting
CINCINNATI (AP) -- Longtime Cincinnati Reds announcer Joe Nuxhall is upset, certain the team is forcing him out of the broadcasting booth.
``I had to get it off my chest,'' the 76-year-old Nuxhall said this week at a signing for his new book. ``It's been on my mind ever since it started.''
Nuxhall was only 15 when he pitched in relief for the Reds on June 10, 1944. He still holds the distinction as the youngest player ever to appear in the majors.
The left-hander has been a Reds broadcaster since 1967, spending almost the last 31 years in the booth with partner Marty Brennaman. The two of them signed two-year extensions on Nov. 1, 2002.
Nuxhall said the Reds made it clear after the 2002 season that they didn't want him to do the 2004 season. His representative, Reuven Katz, worked out a deal with John Allen, the Reds' chief operating officer, to have Nuxhall do 80 games in 2004.
Nuxhall said Wednesday that Allen wasn't the executive forcing his departure.
``It wasn't John Allen, is all I'll say,'' Nuxhall said. ``I don't know who it was. I'm not going to comment until I find out.''
The Reds issued a statement Thursday saying they have talked with him about returning next year in some capacity, although not as an everyday broadcaster.
``Specific duties have not been finalized, but earlier this summer our discussions included broadcasting some spring training and regular-season games in the future,'' the Reds said. ``Joe Nuxhall is as integral a part of, and as identifiable to this organization, as any player or manager who has put on a Reds uniform.
``He has earned the right to be involved as long as he wishes.''
Nuxhall's replacement, Steve Stewart, is working with Brennaman this season to handle the games that Nuxhall does not work. The plan is for Stewart to take over full time for Nuxhall in 2005.