Results tagged ‘ Phil Rozewicz ’

Well-Equipped: There is No Offseason for Tony Migliaccio

Tony Migliaccio sure knows his way around the clubhouse.

And he should. He’s the Director of Clubhouse Operations and the
Equipment Manager
for the Club and he’s played an integral role in the
clubhouse since Opening Day of 1978, when he started as a batboy and
clubhouse attendant for the visiting side of things.

“It was Paul Molitor‘s first game for the Brewers. I always look back
and kind of laugh that at the time, Molitor made the team and started
the season as shortstop, nobody had really heard of him. Robin [Yount] had some
health issues so he didn’t start on Opening Day, but Molitor did. There
was a picture in the paper back then of Molitor making a play and there
I was, the ball boy down the left-field line, just sitting there, you
know? His first day and mine,” Tony recalls.


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The 1978 Milwaukee Brewers Team Photo. Tony is
third from the left in the bottom row.   Paul Molitor is second from the
right in the fourth row.




The next season, Tony switched over to the home clubhouse, where he was a
batboy and a clubhouse attendant three more years before he became the
clubhouse assistant to then Equipment Manager, Bob Sullivan for
approximately four years. When Bob passed away, Tony was given the head
job as Director of Clubhouse Operations and Equipment Manager and he’s
had that ever since.

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Tony Migliaccio as Director of Clubhouse Operations & Equipment Manager.



Tony describes his role as having dual responsibilities:

“You work as the Equipment Manager and in that role, you order all the
equipment the players need to play the game–bats, balls, shoes, clothes, etc. On the
other side of it, we manage and operate the clubhouse, running the
day-to-day operations of that.That part of the job entails clothing
them and providing another service by feeding them breakfast, lunch and
dinner. We do what we can to get them on the field. Everyone has a role.
The trainers’ role is to keep them healthy on the field, the coaches’
job is to teach. Here, we keep a nice house, clothe them, feed them and
make sure they’re happy, play the game and have a good time.
” he
explained.

“I think everyday is unique. That’s kind of the neat part of it. You can
come in here and every day there is a different challenge or need. Our
role is to make the guys as comfortable as possible. They have enough
hurdles in the game, on the field, and so many other things going on
around them in their lives that we try to make it as comfortable for
them as we can and to create an enjoyable environment.”

Tony and I talked about the change in the uniforms over the years. As
time has progressed, the uniform specifications have gotten a little
more complicated, keeping Tony and his staff on their toes.

“You look at the guys on the field now and compare it to the late 1980s,
where it was all just cookie cutter- you know, 34″ waist pants and a
44″ jersey. Now we’ve got many options, for example, pants can be open
bottom, or more tapered. Some players may wear things bigger,
looser…The marketing of the game has changed as such that there is a
lot more variety–a couple of different jackets, a couple different
jerseys.”

Tony told me that the team never had BP tops in the 80s, they just wore
game jerseys. Now in essence, there are six different jerseys and each
player has to have more than one as a backup in case something happens.
When you multiply that times a 25-man roster, plus a few guys that Tony
knows will move up and down in the organization due to injuries,
pitching, etc. that he’ll also need to carry uniforms and equipment for,
you can see he has quite a bit to handle and monitor for inventory.

And, when it comes to Spring Training when a team has such a large roster, you can imagine that Tony is a very busy man.

“In Spring Training you are doing a lot of the same things as you would
during the regular season, but you have twice as many players. We have
53 players here now and we’ll leave here with 25. So that’s the
difference with Spring Training, the magnitude, more people to take care
of, more to feed, more to clothe, more equipment to provide,
” Tony
said.

Tony remembers years ago when it seemed like Spring Training was looked
upon as the time that players would use to get in shape. They’d come
down to camp, play 20 games and then go back ready to start the season.
It was much lower key and the days were shorter.

“Now,” Tony said, “Players come down in shape, we play 30 games and
there are more services required. Sometimes, there are two games a day.
It is a little more intense than it used to be.”

“I have been fortunate that I’ve worked in all three facilities that
we’ve been in: Sun City, Chandler and here in Maryvale.You look at the
progression, even just in our area, at the space we’ve had and what
we’ve provided. In Sun City, we had a very tiny equipment room, but you
made it work, you adjusted things. We didn’t provide as much stuff for
the guys. Then we moved to Chandler and it was a little bigger, but now
we have this space, which is twice as big and we’ve already outgrown it
into renting storage facilities to house a lot of the equipment,” Tony
said.

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Here is just one area of Tony’s equipment room at Maryvale Baseball Park.


Just like the rest of us, there is no offseason for Tony Migliaccio and
his staff. 

Starting in January, trucks will leave Milwaukee bringing
everything down to set up for camp. Tony and his staff will arrive, help
take part in the Brewers Fantasy Camp, work through Spring Training and
then travel back to Milwaukee for Opening Day and play through the
summer. Then when all the games are done, while their hours are a little
more regular and they have weekends free, they still have to prepare
for the following year, taking inventory, working on the budget, and
planning.

Tony also travels with the team.

“I do 90% of the travel. I made every trip for probably about 15 or 16
years and then, 10 to12 years ago, we started breaking up the trips a
little bit so Visiting Clubhouse Manager Phil Rozewicz or Home Clubhouse
Assistant Jason Shawger
will make a trip or two. Out of Spring
Training, I will pretty much stay with the team throughout the first
month of April and wait until the middle or end of May to take a trip
off to stay at home, catch up in the office and at home,” Tony said.

In his job, Tony also has to be prepared for anything.

“When we travel throughout the year, part of our extra equipment stock
is carrying blank jerseys and numbers, everything you need to make a
jersey. In each city, we have a reciprocal relationship with the
visiting clubhouse staff that take care of us. They have a seamstress on
hand that they work with so if we get into San Diego late one night and
Vice President-Assistant General Manager Gord Ash calls and says ‘Hey,
we’re bringing up so-and-so,’ I can get to the park early that morning,
pull out everything I need, call our contact, have them come out and put
our jersey together within a couple hours,” he explained.

“Knock on wood, we’ve always got it there in time. I have heard there
have been situations with some teams where they make a move so quickly
that they have to have a player wear a jersey with another name on the
back just to get out there on the field. We’ve been lucky where its
worked out. That’s one great thing about Majestic Athletic being the
licensee and having all of the team for uniforms–they have a good bank
of knowledge as to everyone’s sizes.”

Tony takes extra precautions to be prepared and make sure he’s ready for
anything. When it became likely that we would make the trade for CC
Sabathia
in 2008, it was Fourth of July weekend and he knew that
Majestic shuts down for the holidays. Knowing CC’s size and that he had
such unique specs on his gear, Tony took the initiative to order his
uniforms the week before, to have them on hand just in case.

“I figured hey, you know what, if we don’t make the trade, it will be a collector’s item. It all worked out,” he recalled.

Speaking of 2008,  making the Postseason that year ranks in the top 10 of Tony’s favorite memories in his time with the Club.

“It pretty neat, the way it came down to the last day.The way it played out was pretty cool,” he said.

“I was also fortunate to be around during the World Series in the early
’80s. I was a young kid then,” Tony said. “Molitor’s 39-game hitting
streak
was pretty neat, Robin’s 3000th hit, 1987, that whole start of
winning 13 in a row, Nieves throwing a no-hitter. That was a pretty
unique thing, to start off that hot,” he said.

It was great catching up with Tony and taking a tour of his world, but
with his phone buzzing during our interview and guys stopping him along
the way, I knew I had to let him get back to work.

Here’s to hoping the 2011 season makes Tony’s list of favorite memories!

-CAIT
johnandcait@brewers.com

John and Cait’s Annual Clubhouse Sale Preview

It’s that time of year again! The Brewers Clubhouse Sale starts tomorrow at 9 a.m. but John and Cait have a sneak preview of all the great deals for you! 

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The sale will take place in the Visiting Clubhouse at Miller Park, which has been transformed into a retail store offering fans savings of up to 75% on Milwaukee Brewers merchandise. 

Like last year, there are plenty of great items up for sale. You are sure to find something for every Brewers fan on your list and the many items available will allow you to get your Holiday shopping off to a solid yet economical start. (Psst! There are t-shirts starting at just $5!)

Jill Aronoff, Tom Jennings and their retail crew really did a great job in pulling everything together for what will be a fun two days for shoppers at Miller Park.

Here are some of the highlights, from John and Cait’s perspectives:

JOHN:

This must be Phil Rozewicz’ favorite week of the year, his office looks dark as members of the Brewers retail team have taken over his clubhouse to turn it into a retail wonderland for Brewers fans. Phil, enjoy your weekend off and we will see you next week! 

photo2.JPGWhen I first walked into the Visiting Clubhouse, one thing immediately caught my eye.  It was a die-cast 1:12 replica Harley-Davidson painted with a Brewers logo.  A neat gift for the Harley enthusiast or the Brewers fan who already has every bobblehead sitting on their desk. At any rate, this gift is a steal at only $20.
photo6.JPGAnyone who knows me knows of my love for all things USA. I always enjoy the American flag caps worn in MLB on Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Memorial Day. This red hat with the American flag inside of the Brewers “M” logo is a great way to show your love for the Brewers and America.  This hat is another great deal at $20. (Note: Sizes and supplies for this item seemed to be extremely limited!)

photo4.JPGEver since I first visited their store in Philadelphia over 12 years ago, I have always been a fan of Mitchell & Ness. They basically started the retro jersey craze and they continue to be the industry leader in retro apparel. This hooded sweatshirt has a great feel to it and at only $50, it will also give a great feel to your pocketbook.
photo5.JPGAs I was flipping through some of the t-shirts, I came across this shirt. I was completely thrown off guard because I had never seen it in the store before!  Had I seen it, I would have picked it up.  Alas, here it is for only $20.   like the soft feel to the shirt and I love the Milwaukee script across the front (I was a huge proponent of bringing back the “Milwaukee” script uniforms). Banner is another great brand that makes quality gear.
photo8.JPGThe question I get most about the annual Clubhouse Sale is the availability of game-used and game-worn items.  For all you collectors out there, this is your best place to get those items–and buying them from the source guarantees theauthenticity of every item.

The sale has a great supply of game-used bats in all varieties (broken, new, used, pink) in prices ranging from $75 to $425.  A collection of used game balls, player locker name plates, lineup cards and helmets are also available with those items ranging in price from $10 – $150.

photo3.JPGWith the 40th anniversary season last year and the team wearing the special uniform patch, that mean the availability of game-worn uniforms with the 40th anniversary patch are plentiful.  From Corey Hart ($400) to–my personal favorite–the #99 Bat Boy jersey ($50), there are plenty of game-worn jerseys available.  Perhaps the best deal is John Axford’s game-worn rookie jersey priced at $250. 
photo7.JPGAdditionally, I did see a number of the Trevor Hoffman 600th Save commemorative prints for sale.  Some were autographed (and numbered as a limited edition of 51) and some were framed–all were a great deal.

1Hoffman01.jpgFinally, I noticed a large supply of authentic blue “Milwaukee” jerseys with the 40th Anniversary patch.  While these are not game-worn, they are still authentic and priced at only $100–a deep discount on an authentic jersey (and my personal favorite in the Brewers jersey collection.)

CAIT:

The Clubhouse Sale really does have something for everyone, so I decided that this year, I would give you my preview based on the diverse group of Brewers fans on my holiday shopping list.

First, my dad. Dad is a big Brewers fan and avid golfer. I thought he’d look just dapper in this green polo shirt with the interlocking M and B with crossed bats logo. We brought this logo back for our 90s Weekend during our 40th Anniversary this year and you don’t see it too often anymore. In this shirt, Dad will be a trendsetter, for sure. And at $20 ($70 originally), this shirt is a steal.

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Next up…mom. Mom might just be a bigger fan than dad and she loves to entertain, so I thought she’d really appreciate this 3-bowl melamine serving set, which is going for just $15. This will be perfect for the Brewers parties she hosts.

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My husband…he doesn’t know it yet, but I’m seriously considering investing in a couple of seats from Miller Park. This offseason, we’re working on a few construction projects and one involves removing a few of the seats, so we’re putting them up for sale! They are $75 each or $100 for a pair and I think it would be so cool to have a pair to complement our baseball-themed rec room. Now we can even enjoy the away games from the comfort of our Miller Park seats! They’re a piece of history and also, a total conversation piece. (Note:  Not all seats will have the Miller Park logo on them. Also, you won’t actually be able to take the seat home with you from the sale, but you can reserve one and pick up your authenticated seat(s) next week!

MP seat.jpgMy 6-month-old baby goddaughter, Makena, will look so cute in this set of  adorable pink and white retro Brewers onesies. At just $10, I can get her some in a couple of different sizes so she can wear some now and then some to her first games next season!

onesies.JPGAll of my girlfriends and I have an annual tailgate every year. They all love the Brewers almost as much as me, so that’s why I knew they’d all appreciate these stylish Brewers bags/purses! Originally $30 and $50, these Tessuta Woven purses and this Touch by Alyssa Milano bag are all going for just $10 each.

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I have a few Brewers history buffs on my list and I think I will get them something to commemorate our 40th Anniversary (I just love that logo!). We’ve got t-shirts for $10 (originally $25) and beer steins for $5 (originally $10).

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Finally, if anyone has me on their gift list, here are a couple of neat things I found for the female fan. (Hint, hint, cough cough.) The first is this super-cute Brewers retro tank for just $10 (originally $30) and the second is this uber-soft hooded t-shirt that is selling for only $15.

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In addition to these fabulous sale items, shoppers can also purchase a Brewers Kids Club Membership Kit ($25) and of course, if you truly want to give the gift of the season, Holiday 4-Packs are on sale now!

We just want to remind everyone that quantities for all items (especially game-used items) is extremely limited. We don’t know how long each item will last, but we do know that with the great selection of the items and these awesome prices, merchandise will go fast.

The Clubhouse Sale runs this Friday and Saturday, December 3 and 4, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., in the Visiting Clubhouse at Miller Park.

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See you there!

-John and Cait

johnandcait@brewers.com

John Previews the Brewers Community Foundation Week Auction

Rebranded for 2010, the Milwaukee Brewers Community Foundation is currently hosting its first ever Milwaukee Brewers Community Foundation Week.   A series of in-park events have been planned including raffles that benefit the Brewers Community Foundation.

Highlighting the week is a commercial-free telecast of Tuesday’s Brewers-Diamondbacks game on FS Wisconsin.  That’s right, on Tuesday fans tuning in at home will not see a commercial during the Brewers game.  Things could get quite interesting for Brian Anderson and Bill Schroeder without any commercial breaks!

As a part of the telecast, a live auction will take place on brewers.com.  The auction is currently open and will run through Tuesday night.  If you happen to be attending the game that night, you will also be given the opportunity to bid on items via computer terminals set up at the ballpark. 

Executive Director of the Brewers Community Foundation Cecelia Gore and the Brewers front office has worked hard to put together some unique items.  The auction is filled with some of the most unbelievable experience and once-in-a-lifetime, behind the scenes opportunities offered by the Brewers for Brewers fans.

Fourteen items are available to fans looking to participate in the online auction.  When I first saw the list, I was really excited and almost shocked that some of these opportunities were even being made available!  If anything it shows the commitment by the Brewers organization to the Brewers Community Foundation and the organizations to which they contribute.

I thought I would give you some of my thoughts on my favorite items up for auction:

Party in the Clubhouse - So we have all been to dinner parties before.   Some have been fun, and others we just dread attending and are pretty boring and have a lot of awkward conversation.  You can blow your friends away with this dinner party in the Visiting Team clubhouse at Miller Park (just make sure you clean up or Phil Rozewicz might be after you). 

Up to 50 guests will enjoy the comforts of a Major League Clubhouse with food and non-alcoholic beverages.  Cash bar can be made available upon request.  Additionally, 25 members of your party will have the opportunity to take batting practice in the Brewers batting cages against Jim Gantner, Jerry Augustine and Marcus Hanel.  Brewers GM Doug Melvin will also make a visit.  Dinner, batting practice, visits from former Major Leaguers all make for a dinner party that all of which all your friends will WANT to attend.  Sounds like a fantastic deal.

Hitting Clinic with Dale Sveum & Casey McGehee and Pitching Clinic with Trevor Hoffman & Rick Peterson - These two items are certainly once-in-a-life time opportunities.  To have a half-hour instructional session with these professionals is priceless.  No matter what your skill level, these two packages will make the dreams come true of any Brewers fan.  

Sveum and McGehee will spend a half-hour with the winner of this prize and teach the finer points of hitting.  I have seen these two work together on hitting from the first day of Spring Training on and both of them truly are masters of their craft. 

Peterson and Hoffman between them have over 30 years of Major League Coaching and Playing experience.  The chance to work with a future Hall of Famer in Hoffman and a pitching guru like Peterson will most definitely help the delivery of Little Leaguers with Big League dreams and Bill Schroeder’s “Fantasy Leaguers” alike.

Authentic Game-Used Baseball - I know it is pretty difficult to catch a foul ball or a home run at a Major League Baseball game.  Once in awhile one comes my way in the press box (Ken Spindler normally catches it while Mike Vassallo and I duck out of the way for safety).  This is a pretty good opportunity to own a game-used piece of Brewers history.

FOX Sports Wisconsin Broadcast Package - Being a proud graduate of Marquette University’s College of Communication, this is probably one of my favorite packages.  The winner here will be given the opportunity to conduct a pre-game interview with a Brewers player or coach prior to a pre-selected Brewers game and have it air during “Brewers Live!” on FS Wisconsin.  The winner will also get a tour of the FS Wisconsin television truck and tickets to the game.  This is your opportunity to show Brewers fans watching across the country that you have what it takes to be the next Telly Hughes

Racing Mini Sausages Opportunity - One of the best parts of Sunday day games (besides the press box breakfast) is watching the Famous Klement’s Sausage Race featuring what Official Scorer Tim O’Driscoll likes to call “the little weenies.”  Every Sunday, the regular sausages participate in a relay race with the mini sausages.  This is an amazing opportunity for your child and four friends (aged 5-8, 60 pounds or under) to run in the Famous Klement’s Sausage Race at a mutually agreed upon 2011 Sunday home game.  This package includes 20 Loge Level tickets to that game and a pre-race visit from the Famous Racing Sausages to your child’s school (within a 45 mile radius from Miller Park).  If your family has five kids, a photo of this event would make a pretty unique family photo.

Coach First Base at Spring Training – Brewers First Base Coach Ed Sedar’s job gives him arguably the best seat in the house, but that’s not to say he has an easy job.  This package will give you the chance to perform your best Ed Sedar impression and coach first base during the 2011 Brewers Inter-squad Spring Training Game at Maryvale Baseball Park in Phoenix.  Also included in the package are two round trip airfares on AirTran Airways for your travel to Phoenix, one full Brewers uniform with personalized jersey and a behind-the-scenes tour of Maryvale.  Spring Training is one of my favorite times of the year and I highly suggest to any Brewers fan to make the trip.  This is a great chance to make the trip and a special memory. 

Groundskeeping Experience - If there is one thing you must know about the Brewers Director of Grounds Gary Vanden Berg and his army of groundskeepers, they work hard to make sure Miller Park is ready for every game at Miller Park.  They take care of every inch of the field, grooming, raking and painting the meticulous surface everyday–hours before the first fan arrives and hours after the final out. 

If you have ever wondered what it takes to keep the beautiful green grass at Miller Park the envy of every homeowner in Wisconsin, this package is for you.  The winner here will have the opportunity to assist the crew with watering and preparing the field during pregame and then again with changing the bases in the 4th inning.  The winner will then take home the base they changed along with two official Brewers grounds crew t-shirts and a vial of authentic Miller Park dirt.  Two premium tickets are also included.  If Vanden Berg sees that you are a hard worker, you might be able to get some tips on cutting those intricate patterns seen in the Miller Park outfield in your own backyard.

The auction is open now and will run through Tuesday night at Midnight CT.  Some items have some bids while others have yet to see a bid placed.  There is still some time, but I’m guessing once Tuesday’s game comes around and FS Wisconsin Is talking about the auction, a lot of those items will heat up.

Tune in to Tuesday’s broadcast on FS Wisconsin and on brewers.com and support the Brewers Community Foundation by bidding on some great items. 

–JOHN

johnandcait@brewers.com

 

 

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