Broadcasters Rank the Northwest League (Preview)
Each of the eight play-by-play broadcasters in the Northwest League have a great rapport with one another – as all of us have to deal with similar issues throughout the long grind of a 76-game season. Bob Robertson of the Spokane Indians has called games for over five decades, Pat Dillon of Everett has called more Northwest League games than any other current NWL radioman. Mike Boyle of Tri-City doubles as a hockey broadcaster, Chris Fisher of Eugene will call USC men’s basketball. Drew Bondetelli of Yakima calls Cal Poly athletics – while two other broadcasters work in their club’s front office – Rob Fai is one of Vancouver’s assistant GM’s, Matt Pedersen of Salem-Keizer is the head of their sales-staff.
We all eat the same food, we all stay at the same hotels, we all work from the same radio booth – some of us in the same booth 38 times, 5 or 6 times in the other seven cities. We watch the same on-field promotions, we see the big crowds and the small, we all share a similar seat on the bus.
So I thought – let’s see how we all feel about five different aspects of the Northwest League – Best Team Hotel, Best Press Box, Best Stadium, Best Pre Game Meal, Best Overall Atmosphere. Each broadcaster ranked the teams in the league 1-8 – the best team getting eight points and the worst one, plus giving some comments about the topics.
Some of the comments are outstanding, some are funny, some are directed at front office staff as a way to help improve the situation. No names will be mentioned – but came from one of us eight.
Look for the results of the poll throughout the final two weeks of the season.
NOTES: A sloppy game in the Tri-Cities last night, but it ended in a victory for the Hawks – their four win this season when trailing heading into the eighth inning. Arismendy Alcantara made up for an error in the bottom of the seventh that led to two unearned runs that gave the Dust Devils the lead by blooping an RBI single to tie the score with two outs in the eighth. Elliot Soto followed with an RBI single in the ninth to give Boise the win. After a six-day layoff, Jordan Latham tossed a 1-2-3- eighth to get the win, with Steve Grife locking down the save.
BATTING RACE: It is a two-horse race for the NWL Batting Title – Alvaro Ramirez comes into Thursday hitting .355, while Pierre LePage, who is 14 for his last 26, has raised his average to .346. LePage actually lost a hit last night – as his infield single in the ninth inning that started the Boise rally, was changed to an error (which led to an interesting exchange in the clubhouse following the game – with pitching coach Jeff Fassero finally exclaiming “When it happened, I thought it was an error.”)
STEALING FRENZY: The Hawks stole seven bases in seven tries last night against Tri-City catcher, Josh Powers. Since 2003 (as far back as my stats databases go), Boise hasn’t swiped that many bags in a game – as the team stolen six bases in a game during the 2007 season. LePage had three steals, with Soto, Alcantara, Ramirez, and Dustin Harrington each having one.
PROMOTIONS: A couple former Hawks earning promotions this week – a 2008 Hawks Chris Carpenter and Luke Sommer were called up to the Iowa Cubs, while 2009 Hawk Trey McNutt got the call to the Tennessee Smokies.