Results tagged ‘ Bob Uecker ’

A Wish Come True at Miller Park for Rayner

We have a special guest with us at today’s game.  Thanks to Make-A-Wish Wisconsin, today is  Rayner’s Wish Day at Miller Park.

Prior to the start of the Brewers vs. Cardinals game, Rayner had the chance to meet with several Brewers players & coaches. He also had the opportunity to meet his favorite player, Ryan Braun, and visit Bob Uecker in the his radio booth.

Here are a just a few photos from Rayner’s special day:

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Here’s hoping we’ll pull out another exciting win today. Rayner said we always win when he comes to games, so I’m feeling pretty good about this one.



Bob Uecker Talking Alarm Clock Revealed

You’ll want to get up….get up… and go to the Brewers vs. Cardinals game on Sunday, July 10 to get your very own Bob Uecker Talking Alarm Clock!

Yes, you read that right! In case you missed the news this offseason, all fans at that game will receive an alarm clock featuring the voice of Mr. Baseball modifying his famous home run call to encourage fans to”Get up, get up, get outta…bed!”

This is perhaps the most unique giveaway we’ve had since we introduced gnomes to our lineup in 2015, so I’m very excited about this one. It’s sure to be a collector’s item!

Today, we revealed the image of the clock itself, along with a video of it in action:

All fans in attendance on Sunday, July 10 will receive this unique giveaway item.

All fans in attendance on Sunday, July 10 will receive this unique giveaway item.

Visit to secure your tickets to this game, as well as all of our other All-Fan Giveaway dates!

– Cait


Cait’s Summer Reading List: Reviewing Schroeder’s “If These Walls Could Talk”

I recently finished reading a new book about the Milwaukee Brewers entitled, “If These Walls Could Talk.” The book was written by Brewers TV announcer and former player Bill Schroeder (aka “Rock”) with Drew Olson, an on-air host for 540 ESPN and senior editor/columnist for  The book also contains forewords by Bob Uecker and Craig Counsell.

If These Walls Could Talk

Schroeder, who has been part of the Brewers family since he was drafted in 1979, chronicles the Brewers from his playing days through his current days as a broadcaster.

The book is broken up into five sections: Brewers Greats, Smorgasbord of Stories, Great Games, Behind the Scenes and In the Booth.

Divided up in such a fashion, the book is a quick and easy read.

In “Brewers Greats,” Schroeder talks about Brewers greats Bud Selig, Robin Yount, Paul Molitor and Bob Uecker.

In “Smorgasbord of Stories,” Schroeder provides answers to some commonly asked questions such as “What are you favorite restaurants in X city?” and “What are your favorite ballparks?” along with a firsthand account of the 1986 clubhouse explosion during Spring Training in Chandler, and a deep dive into Brewers nicknames throughout the years.

Schroeder then chronicles what he feels are some of the “Great Games” in Brewers history. There’s October 10, 1982 when the Brewers won the pennant; October 8, 2011-Game 5 of the NLDS; September 9, 1992, Robin Yount’s 3000th hit and many more, often giving a new perspective on some of the most memorable moments in Brewers history. In this chapter, Schroeder also picks his “All-Time Brewers Team.”

Folks who enjoy my “There is No Offseason For” stories will also enjoy Schroeder’s “Behind the Scenes” section of the book. Here, he sits down with members of the Brewers organization to give fans an inside look at Clubhouse operations, the logistics of team travel, the training room, plus video & replay. Along the way, Schroeder sprinkles in his own anecdotes; in this chapter, you’ll also learn more about memorable injuries and team pranks.

Finally, “In the Booth”is a look at how Schroeder grew up playing the game, played at Clemson, was drafted by the Brewers, played for the Brew Crew and the Angels and then transitioned in to a career in the broadcast booth. In this chapter, he talks about his relationships with his different broadcast partners over the years and provides a behind-the-scenes look at how a broadcast comes together.

Whether you’re a die-hard fan from the days of Harvey Kuenn and Robin Yount or a new supporter of the current team, you’ll enjoy this book. Even though I’ve worked for the Club for over 10 years now myself, I still learned a lot of interesting tidbits and read stories that were previously untold.

If These Walls Could Talk is currently available for sale in the Brewers Team Store by Majestic and at other booksellers.

Schroeder has also been doing some book signings in conjunction with the release. The next one is this Thursday, April 21, at Finn’s bar and restaurant in Wales at 7pm.

On May 14, Schroeder will also sign at the Brewers Team Store by Majestic in the Hot Corner on from 11am-1pm.

5/17/16 Update: Here’s a brief video from the weekend’s signing event:

Happy reading!




The Milwaukee Brewers today announced the addition of Lane Grindle to the radio broadcast team.  Grindle will serve as the third voice of the Club on WTMJ Radio (AM 620) and the statewide Brewers Radio Network.  He replaces Jeff Levering, who moved into the number two position following the departure of Joe Block to the Pittsburgh Pirates this offseason.  The announcement was made by Chief Operating Officer Rick Schlesinger.

Lane Grindle joins the Brewers broadcast team.

Lane Grindle joins the Brewers broadcast team.

“We had a deep pool of candidates for this position, but Lane was very impressive throughout the process on many levels,” Schlesinger said. “Lane’s play-by-play skills are very strong, and he has deep family roots in the Midwest. He also has demonstrated interest in continuing to build our online, new media content with podcasts, blogs and other features. We know Lane is going to be a great fit for our organization and the Milwaukee community.”

Grindle, 34, will broadcast alongside Levering during games missed by Hall of Famer Bob Uecker this season.  He is scheduled to make his Brewers broadcasting debut during Spring Training on a date to be determined.

“We’re excited to welcome Lane as the newest member of our Brewers’ radio broadcast team,” said Carl Moll, Director of Network Operations for WTMJ Radio (AM 620).  “We think he is a terrific addition and are eager to introduce him to our listeners on 620 WTMJ and the Brewers Radio Network.”

Grindle joins the Brewers after 10 seasons (2006-15) behind the microphone for University of Nebraska Baseball radio broadcasts on the Husker Sports Network.  He spent his first two seasons as the Cornhuskers’ pre/post-game host before becoming the play-by-play announcer in 2008.  In addition to his role with the baseball team, Grindle held positions as a pre-game host/sideline announcer for Nebraska Football (2007-15) and also hosted a television show for Nebraska Basketball (2008-13).

“My family and I were only willing to leave such a tremendous place like Nebraska for a truly special opportunity and culture,” said Grindle.  “It was very apparent to us from early on in the process that the Milwaukee Brewers provided both of those things.  I am very honored to be joining such a rich broadcasting history.”

Grindle graduated from the University of South Dakota in 2004 with a degree in contemporary media and journalism and minor in history.  He and his wife, Ali, have three daughters, Josie, Payton and Harper, and a son named Luke.


Fans can follow Grindle on Twitter at @lanegrindle.

Brewers Announce 2016 Spring Training Broadcast Schedule

Baseball season really is coming, soon, I promise!

Pitchers and catchers report on Friday and today we announced the 2016 Spring Training broadcast schedule, which includes 16 radio broadcasts on NewsRadio 620 WTMJ, 14 televised games on FOX Sports Wisconsin and 10 webcasts at

Hall of Fame announcer Bob Uecker and Jeff Levering will call the games on 620 WTMJ.  Television announcers Brian Anderson and Bill Schroeder will call the action on FOX Sports Wisconsin.  Craig Coshun and Matt Lepay will also handle play-by-play duties for select games.  Anderson, Coshun, Levering and Schroeder will team up on the webcasts.

FOX Sports Wisconsin will simulcast four games, featuring productions from other FOX Sports regional networks.  These dates include the following: March 19 at the Angels, March 21 vs. the Angels (split squad) and at the Diamondbacks (split squad), and March 27 at the Indians.

2016 Brewers Spring Training Broadcast Schedule

Tickets for home Spring Training games are on sale now at, by phone at 1-800-933-7890 or by visiting the Miller Park Box Office.  Tickets can also be purchased at the Maryvale Baseball Park Box Office.  Tickets are available in five seating areas: Diamond Box ($27), Field Box ($24), Infield Reserved ($18), Outfield Reserved ($14) and Lawn Seating ($8). In addition, there will also be a limited number of advanced parking passes available for $5.  Information on Spring Training season tickets can be obtained by calling the Milwaukee Brewers Ticket Office at 414-902-4000.

Pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report to Spring Training this Friday.  Position players have a report date of Wednesday, February 24.  The first full workout is scheduled for Thursday, February 25.

Please note that games and times are subject to change.


There Is No Offseason for…Mike Vassallo

It’s been awhile since the last installment of “There’s No Offseason for…”

That’s the series where I aim to dispel what I call “the myth of the offseason” by profiling people and departments across the organization to help you understand what goes on at One Brewers Way during the winter months when baseball is not played at Miller Park.

I recently caught up with Senior Director of Media Relations Mike Vassallo who, at 40, has already been working in the industry for over 20 years.

We sat down to discuss how he got into baseball, the ins and outs of his job (in season and out of season), wrestling and more. Read on.

Here sits Senior Director of Media Relations Mike Vassallo. After 20 years in the business, his office is a treasure trove of cherished memorabilia.

Here sits Senior Director of Media Relations Mike Vassallo. After 20 years in the business, his office is a treasure trove of cherished memorabilia.

Ever since he was a little boy growing up in Long Island, Mike says he’s wanted to be in baseball.

“Obviously I wasn’t dreaming of being the Media Relations Director then…. As a kid, I wanted to be a player, like everybody else.”

Nonetheless, the baseball seed was planted and by the time he went off to college, Mike had tailored his aspirations to becoming a baseball announcer, enrolling in the broadcasting program at Oswego State University in upstate New York.

While still in school, a chance encounter with Hall of Famer and then Yankees broadcaster Phil Rizzuto would forever change the path of his career.

It was 1995 and Mike’s stepfather, who works at Pfizer (the pharmaceutical company), had arranged a  summer job for Mike at the company, as he so often did, in whatever department needed help.

One night that summer, Mike had tickets to the Yankees game and planned to leave straight from work to meet his friend there, but he wasn’t yet entirely familiar with the subway system.

Enter Andy, an older gentleman who worked at Pfizer as a greeter in the lobby and manning the elevators, etc. Andy’s night job happened to be doing the same thing at Yankee Stadium, so Mike and Andy left work together on that fateful night and headed to The House That Ruth Built.

“I brought a baseball with me because I was a big fan of Phil Rizzuto….I knew Andy knew him and I wanted to get his autograph,” Mike recalls.

“So we got to the game and I’m outside the elevator. Phil Rizzuto comes off. Andy introduces me. I get my ball signed. I’m all happy. I step aside to wait for the elevator to go meet my friend and I overhear Phil say to Andy, ‘My assistant never shows up anymore. I think I’m gonna have to get a new one,’” Mike recounts, affecting Phil’s strong New York accent as he tells the story.

The enterprising 20-year old wasted no time.

“I think I might have even raised my hand….I said ‘I’ll do it for free!’ Of course [Phil] was taken aback at first because he had just met me five minutes before, but Andy said, ‘Oh, he’ll do a good job. Give him a chance.’”

And that’s how Mike got his first job in baseball as the personal assistant to Phil Rizzuto. For the rest of the summer, whenever the Yankees were on Channel 11, Mike was happy to be Phil’s gopher, getting him his coffee, keeping score for him during the innings he didn’t announce and whatever else needed to done.

Holy cow! How time flies. Here’s Mike with Phil Rizzuto, the man who took a chance on him back in 1995.

Holy cow! How time flies.
Here’s Mike with Phil Rizzuto, the man who took a chance on him back in 1995.


That experience helped Mike get a real internship with the Yankees in 1997 which led to him getting an entry-level job in the Yankees Media Relations department where he worked in 1998 and 1999. (Fun fact: Mike says he didn’t dislike the Yankees, but he was a Mets fan growing up.)

From there, he took a job with the Cincinnati Reds as Assistant Director of Media Relations, where he worked for six years before joining the Brewers as Director of Media Relations in middle of Spring Training in 2006.

As the current Senior Director of Media Relations, Mike’s department includes Ken Spindler (Senior Manager of Media Relations) and Zach Weber (Manager of Media Relations).

These three guys are responsible for handling interviews and media requests, writing press releases, keeping stats and more.

“I kind of forgot about the broadcasting stuff because this worked out so well,” Mike says.

In particular, Mike is the primary contact for interviews with our players, Manager Craig Counsell and General Manager David Stearns.

Mike says that part of his job is not as demanding during the offseason as it is during the season—for the players at least.

“Sometimes in the offseason, it’s actually more demanding because of all the Hot Stove talk, so the requests for GM go up a little bit,” said Mike.

And of course, the stove will be heating up even more with next week’s Winter Meetings, so Mike will be traveling to Nashville with the Brewers contingent.

In season, Mike and his team are responsible for producing the game notes, which is a six-page packet containing updated statistical information and bio information of all the players that comes out for every game during the season.

While there aren’t game notes during the offseason, there is still plenty of stat and bio work to be done.

“I’m the lead writer on the media guide. I do all the bios for the 40-man roster and the non-roster players for the media guide. I’m working on that right now,” Mike said.

Those items will take Mike and his team right up to Spring Training.

For Cactus League play, Mike will typically relocate to Arizona for a good six weeks. However, this year will be a little different as he and his wife Jeana are expecting their first child, a baby boy due February 26.

So instead of heading down in mid-February as he usually does, Mike will wait until about two weeks after Baby Vassallo joins their team to travel down to Arizona to catch up with his staff and the Cactus Crew.

Speaking of travel Mike is also the primary media relations contact that travels with the team, making about three-quarters of the roadtrips during the season.

“My favorite part (of my job) and least favorite are the same thing—travel,” Mike says. “It’s my favorite part because I get to visit all these great cities and stadiums and it’s the least because it takes me away from home and my wife—and kid next year.”

In his two decades working in the field, Mike says the main thing that’s changed his job is social media.

Mike is also responsible for writing all the baseball-related press releases—roster moves, injury updates, etc.—and he says, “I can’t remember the last time that I did a press release about a trade where it wasn’t already on social media. I feel like our press releases now just confirm what’s already all over social media, whereas in the past, we’d write the press release and that’s how people would find out.”

While social media presents some challenges from that side of things, along with generating false rumors and making things tougher for Baseball Operations, etc., Mike is quick to point out that it’s also a positive thing (which is good since you know, I’m the Director of New Media and all).

“Whenever we have a player or a manager do an interview, I put it right there on Twitter….How would we get the word out so quickly in the past?”

Speaking of Twitter, that’s another part of Mike’s gig. Since he’s the first to know about roster moves and injury updates, as well as TV/Radio interviews, etc., he’s able to assist us in the New Media Department by putting that information up on Twitter right away. But it doesn’t stop there.

Known amongst the media for sprinkling the game notes with interesting tidbits, such as these….

Mike has great access and often helps us capture some great moments for social media as well:

With so much to cover and traveling on a smaller percentage of road trips, I definitely appreciate Mike’s creativity and contributions!

Another thing you might not know is that Mike has a hand in some of the music that ends up being played at Miller Park.

“I’m pretty much the person that collects the players’ music for the scoreboard, which is kind of fun because sometimes I suggest songs to them and they use them,” Mike said.

[For those of you who don’t know what we’re talking about, check out the list of Brewers walk-up music.]

Because he’s sometimes seen as the conduit for getting those song selections to the scoreboard folks, Mike’s also been able to marry one of his other passions with baseball—wrestling.

“I’ve liked it since I was 10 years old. 1985 Wrestlemania was the first one and it’s just something I never grew out of I guess…. I think we all have our guilty pleasures. I just take it for what it is. I just find it really entertaining,” Mike says.

So, oftentimes those songs Mike suggests to players involve wrestling.

“I’ve had quite a few over the years. The first one was Tim Raines, (an outfielder) with the Yankees. He was the first person that I remember approaching and saying, ‘Hey why don’t you use this song?’ and it was a wrestling song,” Mike said.

And that’s how Rock Raines started using The Rock’s theme song for a time.

Among the Brewers that he’s converted, Mike counts Todd Coffey (Ultimate Warrior), Nori Aoki (Fandango), Lyle Overbay (Adam Rose), and Shane Peterson (New Day).

“There have been probably at least 10 players over the years,” Mike says.

In his 20 years in the sport, Mike’s certainly experienced a lot, but among the things that stand out most for him include various Postseason appearances.

“I got spoiled right off the bat…We (the Yankees) won the World Series in 1998 and 1999,” said Mike.

Winning the World Series is the ultimate goal for anyone in baseball. Mike Vassallo, pictured here with Yankees Owner George Steinbrenner, was fortunate enough to reach this pinnacle during his first full season in MLB.

Winning the World Series is the ultimate goal for anyone in baseball. Mike Vassallo, pictured here with Yankees Owner George Steinbrenner, was fortunate enough to reach this pinnacle during his first full season in MLB.


But while he cherishes his Yankees World Series ring, he still counts the Brewers Wildcard season in 2008 among his fondest memories.

“It was awesome being part of that because we hadn’t made the playoffs in 26 years, so it was just real exciting but in a different way. With the Yankees it was just expected every year…. It was exciting but it wasn’t as exciting as ’08 where we just came out of nowhere and the whole thing when CC was here, that was a great experience,” Mike said.

Of course, 2011 ranks right up there for Mike as well—winning the division, Nyjer Morgan’s walk-off hit in Game 5 of the NLDS, etc.

But for Mike, many of his favorite memories are off the field, too—the relationships he’s made and maintained over the years.

“It’s all the friendships,” Mike says. “I get to hang out with Bob Uecker on the road. It doesn’t get better than that.”

Indeed. We may not have a true offseason in baseball, but we’re lucky to be surrounded by great people who share our same passion and help make long hours go by quickly.

To keep up with Mike both in-season and during the offseason, follow him on Twitter @MikeVassallo 13.

Stay tuned for more “There is No Offseason” profiles. Is there anyone in particular that you’d like me to highlight? If so, please let me know in the comments below!



Fifth Brewers All-Fan Giveaway Revealed: Bob Uecker Talking Alarm Clock Set for July 10

In case you haven’t been following along, next season’s All-Fan Giveaway reveal is underway!

On Monday, we revealed the 1980s Vintage Brewer bobblehead and the Brewers franchise leader in home runs, Ryan Braun. Yesterday, it was the Barking BobbleHank and Greg Vaughn Bobblehead.

And now here’s All-Fan Giveaway number five.

You’ll want to get up….get up… and go to the Brewers vs. Cardinals game on Sunday, July 10 to get your very own Bob Uecker Talking Alarm Clock!


Yes, you read that right! All fans at that game will receive an alarm clock featuring the voice of Mr. Baseball modifying his famous home run call to encourage fans to”Get up, get up, get outta…bed!”

This is perhaps the most unique giveaway we’ve had since we introduced gnomes to our lineup in 2015, so I’m very excited about this one. It’s sure to be a collector’s item!

Make sure to follow us on our website at and across all of our social media platforms this week–including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram– to be the first to see our 2016 All-Fan Giveaway schedule, plus have a chance to win tickets to those games.

If you don’t win, don’t worry.  Individual tickets will go on sale in spring. However, if you’d like to secure your tickets for this game early, the Bob Uecker Talking Alarm Clock is included in select season ticket packages which are on sale now.

Be sure to check back in the coming months as we also unveil the image of the actual alarm clock when we get it!

Stay tuned to the blog, our social channels and all week as we unveil more of our schedule!

– Cait


Brewers Up for Two 2015 Esurance MLB Awards; Fans Can Vote Thru 11/13

Online fan voting at for the 2015 Esurance MLB Awards, an expanded awards program that recognizes Major League players, baseball fans and memorable moments in unique categories, is underway and we’re up for awards in two categories:

Best Player-Fan Interaction: Ryan Braun Bails Out a Young Fan

On July 5, Ryan Braun had to try, try again to provide a young Reds fan with a souvenir in Cincinnati. The Milwaukee right fielder gave the child a ball after recording the final out of an inning, but the youth immediately returned it to the field of play. Luckily, Braun tossed the ball back once more — and this time, the boy’s father made sure to secure it safely.


Best Call-Radio: Bob Uecker on Martin Maldonado’s Marathon Winner

On May 31, catching the entirety of an extra-innings marathon vs. the D-backs, Martin Maldonado took it upon himself to end things when he batted in the bottom of the 17th. The backstop drilled a one-out, walk-off homer that elicited one of the most ecstatic “Get up, get outta here — GONE!” calls that legendary broadcaster Bob Uecker would deliver all season long.

Fans can vote for the Brewers in these categories, and cast their votes in over 20 other categories now through November 13.

The 2015 Esurance MLB Awards represents a comprehensive award-balloting process based on nearly two months of voting, encompassing the entire awards season. The five different groups of voters – fans, members of the baseball media, club front-office personnel, former MLB players and Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) members – each count for 20% of the winner selection.

Winners in each category will receive the trophy known as the GIBBY (Greatness in Baseball).

The 2015 Esurance MLB Awards are officially sanctioned by Major League Baseball and voting will culminate with a first-of-its-kind multi-platform special, The 2015 Esurance MLB Awards Show, airing Friday, November 20 at 6p.m. CT exclusively on MLB Network and

When fans vote for the 2015 Esurance MLB Awards, they have the opportunity to enter the national sweepstakes for a chance to win prizes. The grand prize winner will receive a pair of 2016 season tickets to their favorite baseball team and a trip to the MLB Winter Meetings in Nashville on December. 8. Winners will be announced shortly after the 2015 Esurance MLB Awards voting closes.
Earlier this season, Esurance partnered with MLB to become the exclusive auto insurance partner for Major League Baseball as well as the title sponsor of the first-ever all-digital Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot and the Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote, each of which set all-time records for fan voting.

Win a Copy of the 2015 Brewers Yearbook Signed by Bob Uecker

Similar to yearbooks in years past, this season’s Milwaukee Brewers yearbook is chock-full of over 150 full-color pages of beautiful Brewers photos, fun facts and historical information.

However, the 2015 Milwaukee Brewers Yearbook is highlighted by a feature on Bob Uecker, who is celebrating 60 years in professional baseball this year.

The article is written by Brewers beat writer Adam McCalvy.

Brewers Yearbook Uecker
Featuring a wide range of photos, player biographies and statistics, the Brewers Official Team Yearbook is the only publication that includes photos of every player in the organization – from rookie ball to the majors. A collector’s item that is ideal for autographs, the Brewers yearbook is now available for just $10 (an absolute steal!) and also makes a great gift idea for the Brewers fan who has everything.

Brewers Senior Manager – Media Relations, Ken Spindler heads up the yearbook project and has really outdone himself this year. Pick up your souvenir copy at the Team Store by Majestic inside Miller Park or online here.

We’ve also got your chance to win a copy of the yearbook signed by Mr. Baseball himself. Follow @Brewers on Twitter for details!




Pink Tie Guy Event Benefits Breast Cancer Research and Prevention

Last night, I was fortunate to be able to attend the “Pink Tie Guy” fundraiser at Blu atop the Pfister Hotel in downtown Milwaukee.

Led by President-Baseball Operations and GM Doug Melvin and his wife, Ellen, Pink Tie Guy is an event benefiting After Breast Cancer Diagnosis (ABCD). Breast cancer research and prevention is a cause near and dear to the Melvins’ hearts, as Ellen lost her mother, Elsie Schultz, to the disease in 1991.

Ginny Finn, Executive Director of ABCD, was on hand to speak about the importance of the cause and how grateful the organization is for support from events such as this.

A pink tie is not just a fashion statement – it’s a commitment to the fight against breast cancer. At the event, the “Pink Tie Guys,” an elite group of individuals who stepped up to the plate to contribute to the fight, were presented with custom pink bow ties from Randa Neckwear.

Attendees from the Brewers included Manager Craig Counsell, Jerry Narron, Ed Sedar, Mike Guerrero, Rick Kranitz, Lee Tunnell, Jimmy Nelson, and Jonathan Lucroy; broadcasters Bill Schroeder and Bob Uecker; and other front office executives.

In addition, this year, Commissioner Emeritus Bud Selig was named the 2015 Honorary Pink Tie Guy. Past Honorary Pink Tie Guys include Hank Aaron and Robin Yount.

Here are a few photos from the event:

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Thank you to everyone who came out last night to support this very important cause.






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