August 2006

Philly Pics

Thanks again for all of your kind words. Now, back to our regularly-scheduled blog, with pics from Citizens Bank Park, now in its third year as the home of the Philadelphia Phillies. Joe was on the trip with me, so a few pics from there:

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We had beautiful weather in the City of Brotherly Love.

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The park is a mile or more from downtown, as it shares parking with Lincoln Financial Field (Eagles), as well as the Wachovia Center (Sixers and Flyers) and the Wachovia Spectrum (former home of the Sixers and Flyers and now home of the minor league Philadelphia Phantoms)

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Our radio booth in Philly.

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The press box.

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Another shot of downtown. William Penn’s statue adorns the roof of City Hall. It is 548 feet tall and used to be the tallest building in town. Also the Wall of Fame is in the outfield.  Dallas Green was inducted while we were there.

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The Ol’ Lefthander and me during a night game.

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Now they couldn’t have a Philly ballpark without one of these, could they?

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Night game… what a series! (Reds won 2 of 3. Two games went into extra innings.)

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One more shot, as the Broering family from Alexandria, Ky., stopped by the booth recently. I promised them a spot on the BBB. Dad Richard with sons Matt (13), Joe (8) and Mark (6). Marty and I are your happy hosts.

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Wrigley Field

Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs

Turner Field

Turner Field, home of the Atlanta Braves.

Thanks Folks

I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am for all of your kind words. I’ve heard from many of you through this site, as well as our radio e-mail address. I’ve spoken with other fans around the ballpark. This has got to be the nicest fan base in all of baseball.

This is and continues to be an incredible opportunity for me. It is ?the greatest job in the history of jobs,? broadcasting Reds baseball and working with Marty. I continue to learn from him every day. Whatever I do after this season ends, I’m a better broadcaster and a better person for what I’ve been a part of these past three years. Just to say it one more time, they gave me this news in August because I wanted to know my status as soon as possible. I thank them for being upfront. You can be assured that the organization you root for is run by first-class people from top to bottom. And the excitement we’ve experienced this season is just the beginning.

I’ll keep this brief, but thanks again, and don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine. Focus on the final stretch of what’s been an incredibly fun season. That’s what I’m focusing on.

And, yes, the Philly photos will be up soon… still have to get pics of Marty’s cat Palmer and of our scorebooks too?

Yid’s Herculean Hot Dog Effort

I write from downtown Philadelphia, where it is an incredibly beautiful day on this Friday! What an exciting time for the Reds franchise and Reds fans, after splitting four with the Cardinals. The atmosphere was electric at Great American Ball Park, and now the show hits the road.

For this six-game trip through Philly and St. Louis, I’ll be working with the Ol? Lefthander Joe Nuxhall.  Marty will take a brief vacation, which will include a golf outing with PGA Tour player and Cincinnati’s own Brett Wetterich. I have to thank Marty for allowing me to do these games with Joe.  When it was decided that Joe would do 20 games (during Spring Training), Marty could easily have said he and Joe would work all of them together. I would have understood. Who doesn’t love to hear Marty and Joe together? But Marty didn’t think that was fair to me. So he decided that Joe would work 10 games with Marty and 10 with me. Marty and Joe will do the final road trip of the year together, going to Florida and Pittsburgh (they did four previous home games together earlier this season). Thanks to the Hall of Famer for allowing me to work these games with Joe, which I always enjoy.

Now, if you heard us this week on the radio, a couple of things. First, Marty’s "diversion" while the Reds are on the road. It was suggested Marty would sit in with the rock group "KISS." So what follows is a photo that 700WLW Radio’s Scott Stanley sent us showing Marty in his full "KISS" makeup, as well as "action photos" of Dave "Yiddy" Armbruster, our producer, eating hot dogs after pledging to eat one every half inning if Reds fans sold out any of the half-price ballgames. 

Yid’s Herculean effort Thursday was not without controversy. Our friends Bill Reinberger and Dave Collins (not that one) from the Reds Marketing department were in charge of bringing the dogs to the booth for Yid to consume.  As it turns out, three of the dogs were "jumbo" hot dogs, half-pounders, which made Yid’s job much more difficult.  And, as often happens in athletics (and yes, we live in a world in which "competitive eating" is a televised, legitimate "sport"), Yid was "playing hurt." As so many athletes have done before him, Yid selflessly tried to hide his ailment. He was under the weather, we later learned, but still managed to eat 10 dogs. With three of them jumbos, we awarded him the numerical equivalent of AT LEAST 13. Perhaps we should have given him credit for even more.

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If you’re out and see a band performing, look for this man, and be sure to say "Hey Marty!" between songs.

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Notice how trim Dave Armbruster is. He runs almost everyday.  He’s run the Flying Pig Marathon, as well as a marathon in Sarasota during Spring Training this year.

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The Ol’ Lefthander is among the media on hand to witness the proceedings Thursday.  Yid was preparing to embark on his gastronomical journey.

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"And they’re off!!"  Yid consumes hot dog #1.

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Here, the seemingly helpful, benign Dave Collins brings a batch of dogs for Yid to consume over the next few innings. What we didn’t  know was we were about to be embroiled in a controversy that threatened to sabatoge the integrity, the purity of Yid’s digestive display.

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Keep in mind, he was eating while never missing a beat doing his job. Producing our game, in constant communication with Matt Steinman in the studio, and keeping Marty and me on the air.

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"The victims." Hot dogs were an endangered species at Great American Ball Park this week.  Fans (and Yid) consumed 159,715 during the four-game series with St. Louis.  (For the record, I had one.)

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Yid did not get sick, but toward the end of his endeavor, he showed his sense of humor (Seg Dennison enjoyed it).

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What a day for the man who’s brought you Marty and Joe (and me) for 21 years, our fearless leader, Dave "Yiddy" Armbruster. The equivalent of at least 13 dogs, all while "playing hurt." Thanks Yid!!

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EXCLUSIVE: Inside “The JDD”

As the Reds battle the rest of the National League to see who’ll win the NL Central and the Wild Card, I felt it was time to take you to a place inside Great American Ball Park that I’m fairly certain you have never seen. After all, that was one of the main reasons for starting this blog — taking you "behind the scenes." Well, off we go again…

If you’re a regular Reds on Radio listener, you’ve probably heard us refer to the "JDD" at some point during the past couple of seasons. For the uninitiated, "JDD" stands for the "Jim Day Domicile."  Jim Day is our buddy from FSN Ohio. You’ve probably seen him on the Reds pregame or postgame show on TV, or doing the same job on Columbus Blue Jackets telecasts. The "JDD" is a seemingly small, covered structure. It’s located in the camera well just beyond the Reds dugout (first-base side) at Great American Ball Park.

So, without further adieu, we take you "inside the JDD." Enjoy!!

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Jim Day enjoys the view from his "front porch" (the Reds dugout).

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Jim is anxious to give us the grand tour.

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And awaaaaayyyy we go!

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Once you get inside the JDD, the first thing you notice is its enormity. I counted 38 floors inside the giant atrium. You can see the sunlight streaming in from the top. It gets very dark during night games.

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Jim poses for a shot after a night game (a Reds win!).

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The elevator allows Jim to keep tabs on all that goes on inside the JDD. And it looks cool; apparently the chicks dig it.

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Jim is a popular guy, and he graciously entertains many visitors. But with his travels taking him all over the country, he’s set up a concierge desk to help everybody get where they’re trying to go.

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A Reds fan enjoying his first visit to the JDD. Jim gets many requests for photos, but he always has time for his fans.

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When the concession stands aren’t open, Jim provides his guests with a deli.  It can get very busy around meal times.

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Jim likes to stay in shape, and so do his guests. Here, Reds employee Ryan Rizzo works out in the JDD fitness center.

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The JDD features two swimming pools. Outdoors…

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And during the cold months, you can swim inside.

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People are already wanting souvenirs. Demand became so great, Jim opened the JDD gift shop.

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Jim getting ready to leave the JDD. Time for yet another "Real Reds" pregame show.

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And this concludes our tour of the Jim Day Domicile. Ask Jim for details on tours and weekend rates. He offers family discounts as well.

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