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Danny Parkins Reviews Matt Spiegel Calling Cubs Games

“I am looking forward to celebrating him and mocking him,” Danny Parkins said in teasing that Spiegel would be joining him later in the hour. “That is what true friends do.”

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It was a short version of Parkins & Spiegel on 670 The Score in Chicago on Monday. The show had to get out of the way for a Cubs spring training game. Danny Parkins made sure there was plenty of time to review the performance of his partner in the broadcast booth.

Matt Spiegel is in Arizona with the Cubs. He will call four spring training games for the team’s radio broadcast. He has called two already and Parkins noticed that one thing Spiegel has been great at is reminding people that he is on The Score every afternoon. He called Spiegel called “the king of the plug”.

“I am looking forward to celebrating him and mocking him,” Danny Parkins said in teasing that Spiegel would be joining him later in the hour. “That is what true friends do.”

When Matt Spiegel did join the show, he made it clear immediately that he had heard his colleague’s earlier critiques.

“I was feeling pretty good until I heard you guys busting my balls 12 minutes ago,” Spiegel said. “Then I’m like ‘Oh, that’s right! I’m just an afternoon jamoke pretending he’s a big league broadcaster,’ so you did a nice job bringing me back down to size, which I think is your job.”

Danny Parkins and crew played a montage of Matt Spiegel using the word “spanks” over and over to describe a hit. Spiegel acknowledged that he needed to expand his vocabulary.

Parkins clarified that he is happy Spiegel gets to live out a dream at spring training. He even got to call a walk-off home run for the Cubs on Sunday.

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Former Toronto Blue Jays Announcer Ben Wagner Named to Baltimore Orioles Broadcast Team

A release from the Blue Jays says Wagner will appear on radio and select television broadcasts throughout the year.

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Ben Wagner
Courtesy: Ben Wagner on Instagram

The Baltimore Orioles announced the club’s broadcast talent lineup for the 2024 season, which includes former Toronto Blue Jays announcer Ben Wagner. Wagner had served as the radio voice of the Blue Jays for the last six seasons before Sportsnet announced it decided not to renew his contract. Prior to joining the Blue Jays broadcast team, Wagner spent 11 seasons with Toronto’s Triple-A affiliate, the Buffalo Bisons. A release from the Orioles says Wagner will appear on radio and select television broadcasts throughout the year.

The Orioles will continue to use guest analysts throughout the season, including Orioles Hall of Famers Mike Devereaux and Brian Roberts, as well as former Orioles Brad Brach and Dave Johnson.

Geoff Arnold will return for his fifth season with the Orioles broadcast team and will be the primary play-by-play announcer. Kevin Brown will be in his third season as the primary television play-by-play announcer for MASN.

Other team members for the 2024 season include Scott Garceau, Brett Hollander, Rob Long, Ben McDonald, Melanie Newman and Hall of Famer Jim Palmer, who will be in his 32nd season as an analyst and 61st year as a member of the Orioles organization.

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Fred Toucher: ‘I Would Feel Weird’ if Rich Shertenlieb Reached Out to Me

“Even if it was nice, I wouldn’t like it, so if he’s listening, don’t reach out to me.”

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Fred Toucher
Courtesy: Beasley Media Group

Fred Toucher is in the midst of co-hosting a new morning program on 98.5 The Sports Hub with Rob “Hardy” Poole. The Toucher & Hardy show made its premiere in January following the end of a 17-year run in which he worked alongside Rich Shertenlieb. Last November, Shertenlieb parted ways with the outlet that elicited questions and nostalgia from listeners, some of which continue to persist on the new program.

On Friday’s edition of the program, a caller asked Toucher about the last time he spoke to Shertenlieb and if there was still communication between them. The duo started hosting their radio program together at rock radio station WBCN-FM before making the move to the sports talk format with 98.5 The Sports Hub (WBZ-FM) for its launch in the summer of 2009. The caller wanted to specifically hear a “juicy story” and apologized if his broaching the topic was “a forbidden path.”

“I have not talked to Rich,” Toucher said. “I told you I got the text message the Saturday after they didn’t put him on the air anymore, and I haven’t talked to him.”

Toucher wondered who among former members of the Toucher & Rich program had heard from Shertenlieb, leading him to go around the studio and ask. Update anchor Jon Wallach revealed that Shertenlieb texted him on Thanksgiving Day to discuss how the music group Bell Biv DeVoe was performing, but he has not heard from him since. None of the others in the studio had heard from Shertenlieb in a considerable amount of time either.

“None of us were really friends with him so I don’t know what to tell you,” Toucher replied to the caller. “I wasn’t friends with him; I didn’t talk to him, so it’s not odd that I don’t talk to him.”

Toucher then began to hypothesize what would happen if Shertenlieb were to reach out to him. As he thought over such a potential occurrence, he realized that he would have a feeling in his stomach and get anxiety. He did concede, however, that if someone paid him a large sum of money to appear somewhere with Shertenlieb, he would do the 10 seconds.

“I would feel weird; I wouldn’t enjoy the process,” Toucher said. “Even if it was nice, I wouldn’t like it, so if he’s listening, don’t reach out to me. You’d make me incredibly uncomfortable. Just don’t do it.”

In thinking about the potential nostalgia from Toucher & Rich, the program briefly mentioned Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo and his relationship with former co-host Mike Francesa. Toucher believes that Russo is doing fine without Francesa, a sentiment Wallach concurred. Wallach also shared that he feels Russo is doing better after Mike and the Mad Dog than Francesa.

Russo hosts a SiriusXM program on the Mad Dog Sports Radio channel named after him, in addition to High Heat on MLB Network and a weekly appearance on ESPN’s First Take. The split between both shows elicited interest from the listening public, something Toucher completely understands because of the unique facets of radio.

“People consume you 20 hours a week or they conceivably could, so when there’s any change, your immediate reaction to it, even though it hasn’t been bad, a lot of people if you listen to an old thing all the time it’s going to be strange to you, a new thing, or when a component of it is missing,” Toucher explained, “even if it’s better than it was, which I contend Toucher & Hardy over the last three weeks is better than Toucher & Rich was in 2023 and 2022 certainly.”

The segment concluded with Toucher proclaiming that he had answered the question and now will not have to entertain it again. “I have no idea what he’s doing and no one I know does, and no one I know has seen him,” Toucher said. “I haven’t even had a listener email me and go, ‘I saw him.’”

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Arizona Diamondbacks Announce 2024 Broadcast Team; Chris Garagiola Takes Over Radio PBP

“I have a few big-ticket things I want to achieve in my life and being the voice of a major league baseball team is one of them.”

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A photo of Chris Garagiola
Photo: Danielle Cortez/Arizona Diamondbacks

The Arizona Diamondbacks announced their 2024 broadcast team, featuring a new full-time voice in the radio booth in Chris Garagiola, who takes over for Greg Schulte. Schulte retired at the end of last season after being the voice of the Diamondbacks for 25 years.

Garagiola is the son of former Diamondbacks General Manager Joe Garagiola Jr. and the grandson of Hall of Fame broadcaster Joe Garagiola Sr. He spent the past two seasons working as the fill-in voice for the club while Schulte missed time to undergo chemotherapy treatments as he battled cancer. He also served as the pregame and postgame host for the D-backs.

“This was a major life goal,” Garagiola said when his hire was initially announced in early December. “It really was. I have a few big-ticket things I want to achieve in my life and being the voice of a major league baseball team is one of them.”

Garagiola will be joined in the booth by former knuckleball pitcher Tom Candiotti along with Josh Collmenter, Tuffy Gosewisch and newcomer Steve Zinsmeister on Arizona Sports 98.7 and ESPN 620. Zinsmeister joins the Diamondbacks as the pre- and postgame show host on the team’s radio broadcasts on Arizona Sports 98.7. He has spent the last 12 years in broadcasting as a host and producer with D-backs rightsholder Bonneville Phoenix.

The Diamondbacks television booth features the return of duo Steve Berthiaume and Bob Brenly, while also featuring Luis Gonzalez and Tom Candiotti on selected games throughout the season. Jody Jackson, Todd Walsh, Mark Grace, and Brandon Webb will return to action on the pre-/postgame shows.

The D-backs Spanish radio team returns Oscar Soria and Rodrigo Lopez along with Richard Saenz for their 11th season together and can be heard across the valley on Latino Mix 100.3 FM.

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