It was great to meet Louisville Bats’ announcer Matt Andrews via email earlier this year and get a chance to ask him some questions. Matt was quick with his answers but this interview was postponed like an annoying rain delay when your team is ahead by a few runs and it’s only the 4th inning, because I misplaced his answers. So sorry Matt, but so happy I finally found them. I love the insight into the life of a radio broadcaster you’ve provided here.
Hey Bats fans, don’t forget to leave a message for Matt at the end of the interview. I’m sure he’d appreciate your hellos and feedback.
Matt, Can you please take our readers along with you on a day at the ballpark, when do you arrive and what happens before the game?
At home, I’m in the office by around 10 catching up on anything sales related, and tying up any loose ends. After lunch I usually get focused on the evening’s broadcast. Working on stats, notes for that night’s game broadcast, interviewing someone for pregame, checking in with our manager and ultimately getting the lineup are all part of the job. After we have the lineup I will get that
info into my scorebook, check out BP and then have dinner before the game. We take the air 30 minutes before every game with pregame and then the game and approximately a 15 minute postgame. Time then to head home, sleep and repeat! As the saying goes, “baseball never stops!”
You’ve been an announcer for the Bats’ since 2003, but during that time, you’ve also broadcast basketball games for U of L and Moorhead State. Do you feel it helps you be a better baseball announcer by not being limited to only announcing baseball? Does it refresh you or make you anxious for baseball season when it arrives?
No question! I noticed immediately after my first season of hoops that I was more primed for the broadcasting part of my job as soon as the baseball season started. While the games are such
different paces, it has definitely helped me!
You travel to some great cities in the International League, can you tell our readers some of your favorite places to eat before or after games when you’re on road trips?
Many great spots. Some of the favorites: The Flatiron in Columbus, Cafe Patachou for Breakfast in Indy,
anywhere on Federal Hill in Providence, Wings in Buffalo (Duff’s), Dino BBQ in Rochester, Mama Nina’s in Bethlehem, PA, Change of Pace in Syracuse!
I just happened to see a six year old viral baseball video on Facebook of a ball girl making a fantastic staged catch, what are some of the best viral baseball videos you’ve ever seen?
It’s been a while but a bird was detonated by a pitch in Buffalo, manager tirades, anything with the
Growing up as a Reds fan, what would you’ve done if the Reds had not existed? What team would you have rooted for or would you have given up baseball?
Good question. I guess I would have still followed baseball, perhaps Cleveland, since I’m from central Ohio. I grew up living and dying with the Reds…still do!
What are some of the wildest promotions you’ve seen while announcing Bats’ ballgames (not necessarily promotions done in Louisville, but even at opponent’s ballparks.)
Diamond dig on the infield in Chillicothe, pretty sure the $1 happy hour started here with Dale Owens and the Bats – now it’s everywhere, the San Diego Chicken – just the best!
What are some of the best lessons you’ve learned from your mentor Jim Kelch over your years of announcing ball games together? Also, is there anything you can share about Jim that Reds’ and Bats’ fans would find surprising to know?
Jim has taught me quite a bit. The ability to work on the pacing of the broadcast, to let the game breathe and to slow down! More than anything, be patient and never give up on your dream. Fans probably don’t know this but Jim loves to play tennis!
What’s the longest ball game you’ve ever announced?
18 inning game here in Louisville in 2003 vs Richmond with Jim after a 2:15 rain delay, 16 innings in Rochester solo a few years ago, and last year here in Louisville with my broadcast partner Nick Curran,
the franchise record 5:34 game vs Rochester.
If you could wave a magic wand and have a baseball job, any baseball job, except one for the Reds or the Reds organization, what would it be?
I love it here, but just like the guys competing between the lines, I’m trying to get to the Major’s. Any Big League job would work just fine.
Author Lewis Grizzard once wrote that the greatest thing a father can do for his son is instill in him a love for baseball. Do you have a good father / son baseball memory you can share with our readers?
My father and I went to Reds Opening Day a few years ago, never forget that. Also recall as a youngster (5 or 6) going with my family to a Reds weekend series and sitting in the red seats. Remember well a game in 1990 (Reds Wire to Wire) we were at Riverfront when Zane Smith of Montreal served up a Grand
Slam to Eric Davis. I was there with my dad. Thought that was the coolest thing EVER!