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Thread: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

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    Maple SERP savafan's Avatar
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    OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    http://chicagosports.chicagotribune....cubs-headlines

    The Reds Hall of Famer tells Steve Rosenbloom the keys to being an announcer. You have to combine the art of doing play-by-play with the art of storytelling. That's why I think Vin Scully's the best that's ever been. He's the greatest storyteller of all time in my profession. That's why guys aspire to work at his level. Guys won't admit that, but I will. He's the best that's ever been.

    I'm definitely not a homer. I try to be as objective as I can. I can be highly critical of the team I work for. The most important thing to me is my credibility. If I don't have my credib-ility, I don't have anything.

    I never plan what I'm going to say. I'm not good enough to make it not sound contrived.

    To be a part of a World Series of that type (the 1975 World Series between the Reds and Red Sox.) . . . I mean, Game 6 people say may still be the greatest game in the sport.

    The Rose hit (Pete Rose breaking Ty Cobb's all-time hits record), no matter how big I thought it was going to be, it was a hundred times bigger.

    Kentucky-Duke, I did that game in the Spectrum in Philadelphia when Laettner hit the shot in overtime to beat Kentucky in the regionals that year. A lot of people say that's the best basketball game that's ever been played.

    I've been fortunate that I've not stumbled over my words in big moments.

    Five minutes after 11 that morning, I pick up the phone, and the voice said, "Marty?" I said, "This is he." He said, "This is Dale Petroskey, the president of the Baseball Hall of Fame." That's all I remember. I knew damn well he wasn't calling to ask me how I was doing. My whole career flashed in front of my face, starting in Salisbury, N.C., at a 1,000-watt radio station and broadcasting high school and American Legion baseball and football and basketball.

    My given name is Franchester. My old man's two best friends were named Frank and Chester. You know I had to be a tough kid to get through life with that name.

    Martin is my middle name. Thank God my mom said, "This is what we're going to call him."

    I worked with Johnny Kerr for two years on television doing the Virginia Squires games.

    I had the chance to come to Cincinnati and was lucky enough to get the job replacing Al Michaels. I was scared to death. That's the only time in my life I ever doubted my ability because everywhere I went for one month before spring training in '74, people said, "You've got big shoes to fill." Everybody loved Al. I really questioned whether I was good enough to take on the job.

    It worked out fine. I'm in my 33rd year.

    If they're going to let these guys in now with the steroid cloud, then they've got to rethink the Pete Rose thing. Absolutely. I think he's paid his price. I don't think he should ever be allowed back on the field again, but I think they need to rethink allowing him on the ballot to be eligible for the Hall of Fame.

    I'm going to tell you a story that's never been told-publicly, I think. I got a call one night in the fall after the season that Dewayne Staats (former Cubs broadcaster) left to go to New York. I was having dinner and got a call from a guy who used to work at WLW in Cincinnati, our flagship station. He has since left there and owned a small radio station outside of Chicago. He said, "Would you have any interest in coming to the Chicago Cubs as a broadcaster?" I said, "I have a contract." He said, "I thought you did, and that's the reason I'm calling rather than somebody from WGN radio" because of the tampering aspect. I said, "As appealing as a job like that would be in that city for that team on that station, I'm under contract." That was the end of it. I told him to thank the people at 'GN for thinking about me.

    Then it wasn't but a matter of a couple of days later that Thom (Brennaman's son, who now calls Arizona Diamondbacks games) called me and said, "The radio job is open in Chicago. What do you think?" I said, "Think about what?" He said, "Should I apply for it?" I said, "All they can do is say no." He sent a tape, and the way I understand it, the guy who was running 'GN radio at that time was a guy named Dan Fabian, and Dan was home one night and had a cardboard box full of tapes and reached in and picked one tape out, and it was Thom. Now, you talk about fate. Of all the tapes that he could've pulled out of that box, he pulled Thom Brennaman's tape out. It was a videotape of Tom doing a Reds game with Johnny Bench the previous season. I understand he watched 30 minutes of it, and after that, he was on the telephone.

    Be honest with the people who listen to you every day.
    My dad got to enjoy 3 Reds World Championships by the time he was my age. So far, I've only gotten to enjoy one. Step it up Redlegs!

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  3. #2
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Thanks for post savafan.... some of it I have already heard before... but the 'GN thing is something new. I remember when Thom did the sports on WLWT... which some of the Elites know nothing about. Hard to believe some posters can dis this guy when he has seen more baseball in a season than they have seen in a lifetime.
    "I notice that I'm throwing hard when I hear the crowd gasping," - Chapman


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    Your killin' me Smalls! StillFunkyB's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by NastyBoy
    Thanks for post savafan.... some of it I have already heard before... but the 'GN thing is something new. I remember when Thom did the sports on WLWT... which some of the Elites know nothing about. Hard to believe some posters can dis this guy when he has seen more baseball in a season than they have seen in a lifetime.
    It's not Marty's knowledge of baseball that I have a problem with. It's not even his ability to call a game. I think he is top notch in both areas.

    It's when he starts rambling about things unrelated to what's going on down on the field that drive me nuts. Someone will walk in the booth, and then he will go on for 15 minutes about some story about that person, as if the action on the field didn't really matter.

    When he stays away from that nonsense, MB is a GREAT announcer.
    "And the fact that watching him pitch is like having someone poop on your soul." FCB on Gary Majewski

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    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by StillFunkyB
    It's when he starts rambling about things unrelated to what's going on down on the field that drive me nuts. Someone will walk in the booth, and then he will go on for 15 minutes about some story about that person, as if the action on the field didn't really matter.
    .
    Yes, and Marty gets bored and starts stretching out the trivia question for what seems like hours, gives nicknames to the writers (and other stuff that isn't even remotely funny), talks about golf, etc.

    Marty used to be one of the best, but I think 90% of the time, he is now below average because he doesn't care at all about the game. He's as easily distracted as a 4 year old. When his head is in the game, he's good. Unfortunately, his head is never in the game anymore. Sadly, he focuses too much on the "storytelling" aspect.. which is an excuse for him to ramble on about stuff nobody cares about, that isn't even related to baseball.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!

  6. #5
    He sure could hit HalMorrisRules's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    I have a completely opposite opinion of Marty. I enjoy his "ramblings" and have never gotten upset with anything that he discusses while in the booth. If you had to broadcast this team for the last 5 dismal seasons, you might ramble from time to time too. I think the 2nd inning discussion with the beat writers is cant miss radio.

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    Score Early, Score Often gonelong's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by NastyBoy
    Hard to believe some posters can dis this guy when he has seen more baseball in a season than they have seen in a lifetime.
    There are more than a handful of guys here that see more baseball in a season than Marty.

    GL

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    Yay! dabvu2498's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by gonelong
    There are more than a handful of guys here that see more baseball in a season than Marty.

    GL
    Watching it on TV and the "access" that Marty has are two different things entirely.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

  9. #8
    Score Early, Score Often gonelong's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by dabvu2498
    Watching it on TV and the "access" that Marty has are two different things entirely.
    Sure, Marty has access and knows what goes on behind the scenes, which of course gives him an "edge".

    It doesn't automatically qualify him as the foremost expert on baseball any more than it qualified Dan'O who not only had "access", but had the reigns in hand.

    Marty also thought that Juan Castro deserved to play every day. That type of thinking trumps any access he has, IMO.

    GL
    Last edited by gonelong; 06-01-2006 at 11:12 AM.

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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by StillFunkyB
    When he stays away from that nonsense, MB is a GREAT announcer.
    Agreed. It'd be difficult to find someone with a better HR call than Marty--I just remember his call on Griffey's game winner a couple of weeks ago, it was superb.

    And he still gets excited, too--both for the good and the bad. I love hearing his voice and cadence rise when the Reds are rallying.

    I've heard--and basically agree--with many of the complaints that have been thrown at Marty by many people. But I also believe that, when he gets down to just calling the game, there are few better in all of baseball.
    We'll burn that bridge when we get to it.

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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by gonelong
    Marty also thought that Juan Castro deserved to play every day. That type of thinking trumps any access he has, IMO.
    Sure, an opinion is an opinion--some are right on, some are way off. There have been very knowledgeable posters on this board who have had opinions about things that have been substantially off the mark, as well. Marty gets some right, and he gets some wrong. Just like every other announcer.
    We'll burn that bridge when we get to it.

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    Yay! dabvu2498's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by registerthis
    Sure, an opinion is an opinion--some are right on, some are way off. There have been very knowledgeable posters on this board who have had opinions about things that have been substantially off the mark, as well. Marty gets some right, and he gets some wrong. Just like every other announcer.
    Yes... let's not go through each individual statement made by an announcer (or poster on this board) looking for opinions/statements that were way off. If we did that, I'd say we could all be classified as developmentally disabled.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

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    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    I really like Marty Brennaman, and I miss being able to listen to him. However, not to drag up this argument again, but I do now think that some people are correct in saying that he is damaging to the team in some ways, and when I read comments like "I am not a homer" it gets to me. You can be critical of your team without ignoring the facts; I think this board proves that. He hides his favoritism behind "criticism" and this is supposed to make it ok?

    I'm basing this largely on one experience I had over the weekend, which surprised and disppointed me. As many of you know (sorry, I was really excited about it), I went to the GABP for the first time ever on Saturday. My cousin joined us at the game, and at some point we got into a discussion about Griffey, and I said I thought they should move him to left to save his legs, put Dunn at first and explore a couple of options at center. Now, my cousin follows baseball pretty well, he's a smart kid, he knows his basic stats well enough. So I thought that at the very least he would have considered this possibility, even if he did not agree with it.

    He was horrified. Why? Because of Marty Brenneman. His response literally began with the words, "Marty Brennaman says..." and thus began a diatribe of how horrible a fielder Dunn is, how much he hurts the team and needs to be traded, how excellent Griffey is and what a good jump he gets on the ball (this latter part is true. It is not enough.) He viewed my entire viewpoint as a personal affront to the Reds and everything he argued against was backed up by Brennaman. The argument ended with him saying, verbatim, "Like I'm ever going to listen to what you say over Marty...Griffey has earned the right to play centerfield" to which I responded "And how many penants do you think you're going to win with that attitude?" (and which point I realized how loudly I was yelling and we didn't speak for the rest of the game).

    Now, everything my cousin says to me has to be taken with a grain of salt, because even though I love him dearly there is a part of him that is as tool-like as a tool can be, ie. he'll never listen to anything I say about baseball because I do not pee standing up. But in this case, I really think the Marty-speaks-truth aspect was more of an issue, and I was very disappointed that some of what people claim about Marty and his effect on the fans seems to be true. It upsets me because I DO like Marty a lot and I do think he's a good announcer and he can be critical all he wants -- Lord knows parts of this team need it -- but he seems to pick on the wrong parts sometimes. And then defends himself by saying he's not a homer and tries to be objective, thus manipulating (not consciously, of course) people into believing everything he says even more.

    I dunno, it's kind of a dead issue I know, but this was my first taste of it so I had to jump in. I think he's great and I don't want anybody else calling the Reds, but I wish he were truly as objective as he seems to think he is.
    There is no such thing as a pitching prospect.

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    Score Early, Score Often gonelong's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by registerthis
    Marty gets some right, and he gets some wrong. Just like every other announcer.
    Agreed. Its the gets some wrong part that should afford each of us the opportunity to question Marty and not accept what he says as the gold standard. That is all I am saying.

    I listened to and enjoyed Marty and Joe for 25+ years, and he is a large part of the Reds IMO. When measured against his peers, Marty is a fine announcer and is revered by many.

    Either I have outgrown him, he has changed, his entire peer group is lacking, or some combination of the threee. I no longer enjoy the broadcasts so I only rarely tune into them.

    I respect that its not any easy position to excel at ... to be "on" for 162 nights a year. I see all to often where people look at other's jobs and have all the answers, that is, until they are given the opportunity to do it themselves. On the other hand, it greatly peeves me to be told that I cannot possibly critic someone since I don't do what they do for a living ... most likely by someone that isn't afraid to do the same for their schoolboard, mayor, president, etc.

    GL

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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Quote Originally Posted by gonelong
    On the other hand, it greatly peeves me to be told that I cannot possibly critic someone since I don't do what they do for a living ... most likely by someone that isn't afraid to do the same for their schoolboard, mayor, president, etc.

    GL
    Criticize or critique, yes. But you did this via a statement made by Marty a few years ago. Your most recent post (the one I quoted from) is a much more viable argument. I can't (or won't) dispute anything you said in it. I just happen to disagree.

    Get XM radio and listen to some of the jokers calling games. Whoo weee.
    When all is said and done more is said than done.

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    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: OUT LOUD: Marty Brennaman

    Get XM radio and listen to some of the jokers calling games. Whoo weee.
    Lot's fine announcers out there, Niehouse, Steiner, Miller, Greenwald... and that's just the west coast.

    Marty is a good announcer, but to think that he's the only one out there at the top of his game is wrong IMO.


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