From Minor League Baseball to… Minor League Hockey: Part 10

I really enjoyed going to the Paw Sox game yesterday, and I certainly don’t regret going. It was nice to meet and truly engage with a couple more of my boothian role models. (“Official” count of made-up words through my website: 2.) However, it was weird driving south on Interstates 93 & 95 for an hour, but getting off before the Dunkin’ Donuts Center exit. (If you’d like to hear more about that trip, click here.)

This marks the end of the first series of “From Minor League Baseball to… Minor League Hockey” theme on my blog. It’s kind of depressing to hear that, isn’t it? I know I’m bummed about my working-in-hockey season being over, but at least it means I’m that much closer to calling baseball. I wanted to give a tribute to the people I worked with in the Providence Bruins‘ Organization. Like any other situation, there were some tough times, including my mistakes, but on the whole I loved and learned quite a bit from my P-Bruins experience, and I couldn’t have done it without the help of a few great people.

I’m ecstatic (and technically obliged I guess) to give props to Adam Kaufman, the P-Bruins’ home game broadcaster and media relations maven. Adam hired me, directed me to the Worcester Tornadoes when they needed a baseball broadcaster, incorporated me in many of his decisions and taught me how to be a Major League-quality media relations department member in Minor League Sports. He did almost all of that with a smile on his face and a Will Ferrell movie to quote.

Kevin Boryczki, the team’s road game broadcaster and VP, Marketing Services showed me how to literally survive a hockey season on a baseball season-type schedule (a.k.a. how to work more than anyone else and live to tell the tale). If only one person I’ve ever worked with understands that type of grind, it’s him.

The P-Bruins’ Creative Services Director, Andrew Morry, is as productive as– well, I don’t feel like getting into  stereotypes about overseas labor, so let’s just say he gets quite a bit done. He showed firsthand how focus is just as important as people continually claim it to be, plus he’s given me a few pointers on dealing with sponsors the right way.

Although I didn’t work with them quite as often, I want to give a shout out to a few sales executives: Senior Sales Director Sean Marshall, Sales Director Brian Branco and Senior Sales Manager/Youth Hockey Referee/Emcee of In-Game Music Narin Sundarabhaya. Sean always kept me on my toes when I was doing Public Address Announcing for the Youth Hockey Games at the Dunk. Brian prevented chaos quite a few times with his hustling to get me team rosters. Narin was like Cool Hand Luke in his attitude, dealing with the inevitable issues that came up by planning ahead and calling audibles when needed.

I want to thank a few employees of the Dunkin’ Donuts Center too, since I dealt with them fairly frequently. Tony, Tony and Mike all made me laugh in one way or another. Mike and Tony, who work upstairs as part of the game day presentation crew, reminisced about the Nintendo Entertainment System with me, shared their golf plans for the spring, and threw in some updates for me about other games going on in the sports world. The other Tony I worked with kept me company down at ice level when I was doing PA Announcing, usually wavering between serious contemplation and immature but entertaining jokes. I felt like many of our conversations were like an episode of South Park. There was actually a lesson to be learned or a good message to be shared, but it was coated with jokes you wouldn’t want your mother to see you laughing at.

The AHL officials I sat next to when I scored many of the games were nothing but nice and respectful. I’ll give a special shout out to Rick Medeiros, the Director of Security at McCoy Stadium where the Pawtucket Red Sox play. If it weren’t for his suggestion, I may never have had the chance to sit in the broadcast booth with Dan Hoard and Steve Hyder during their call of the games yesterday.

I can’t forget about the people I worked most closely with game in and game out: my fellow Media Relations Assistants. Major thanks go out to Caroline Greene, Alex Kronberger, David Potvin and Ryan Taylor for keeping things interesting. We definitely all grew along our six month part of the journey. Here’s to it being a long-term one in the game of hockey for all of us.

As is customary, I’ve gotta tie this back into baseball. I recently sent an email similar to this post to many of my friends/former coworkers with the Hudson Valley Renegades. I’ve already gotten a few responses back, and they reminded me of how much I loved last summer there. The moral of that story is to always thank the people you’ve worked with. Nothing bad can come of an unsolicited display of legitimate gratitude. (And just like an episode of South Park, the moral smacks you in the face in the end.)

At the end of the first period, it’s Nick 10, Bad Guys 0. For the record, I’m the scorekeeper.

*****

Learn the roots of the “From Minor League Baseball to… Minor League Hockey” Saga through the previously-posted tales:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

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