It all seems a blur.

At this very moment a week ago, Lisa Braun and I were at the Holy Grail Banks attempting to rally the troops in getting Johnny Cueto voted onto the National League All-Star team.  Unfortunately, our All-Star “week” didn’t get off to a successful start – Johnny finished second in the voting.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned that the voting letdown would carry over into the rest of the week.  I’m glad it didn’t.  And despite the defeat, the #VoteCueto Campaign Party on Friday was very much worth the effort.

There were so many moving parts and fast-going events to All-Star week, that the days seem to have blended into one another.  The one constant for each day, however, was the threat of bad weather.  Mother Nature has been a season-ticket holder at Great American Ball Park all year and it appeared she wasn’t staying home during All-Star week.  Thankfully, an eleventh-hour intervention by the Baseball Gods preserved three amazing events at GABP, with minimal weather interference.


The view from my office during the red carpet parade

And speaking of Baseball Gods (and weather), did they also influence the Home Run Derby?  I can’t imagine a more perfect outcome to an event that was, quite frankly, becoming kind of stale in the years prior.  The timed bracket play was simply genius, and by reducing the rounds from 5 minutes to 4, Baseball made a great idea better.  The reduced time was due to inclement weather in the forecast and if you remember, as soon as the derby ended, the skies opened.  In my opinion, 4-minutes was the perfect amount of time.  I wouldn’t be surprised if MLB sticks with it rather than revisiting the 5-minute idea.

There’s so much behind-the-scenes stuff going on to create All-Star week.  In addition to the employees of MLB and the Reds, there are folks from other teams and other companies that get involved to assist in putting together the Midsummer Classic.  All hands are certainly on deck!

For the Futures Game on Sunday, I was on pressbox duty.  I kept score of the game and maintained correspondence with both dugouts for game substitutions.  When each team made in-game changes, I’d announce those substitutions to the press boxes (main press box and the two auxiliary press boxes for overflow media) in order to keep the writers and broadcasters up-to-date on who is in the game. Those announcements also keep PA announcer Joe Zerhusen and the two official scorers in-the-know.

The packed GABP pressbox during the Futures Game

The packed GABP pressbox during the Futures Game

I was honored to be on hand for the All-Star Gala at Union Terminal on Sunday night. What an extraordinary event attended by so many people involved in the game of baseball.  And wow, I’ll never forget how awesome Union Terminal looked that night.

Monday might possibly go down as my most favorite day ever on the job.  I spent half of it with Todd Frazier and his family.  I escorted Todd to the Duke Energy Center for his appearance at FanFest.  When we arrived and he walked in, many fans erupted into applause.  Todd’s mom was moved to tears by this.  Little did she know, she hadn’t seen anything yet!  Frazier took photos with fans and signed the giant baseball that was on display.  He was even joined on stage by Johnny Bench, who helped Frazier pose for photos with his many supporters.


Frazier poses with fans at FanFest


Todd signs the giant baseball at FanFest

Following the public appearance at FanFest, Todd and the rest of the All-Stars were asked to make time for the media at the Westin Hotel.  Each player had his own “booth” where credentialed media were allowed access to the player for approximately 30-35 mintues.  Following the media pow-wow, Todd was part of the Home Run Derby press conference hosted by ESPN’s Karl Ravech and attended by all of the Derby participants.


Frazier at his media station on Monday afternoon


Todd at the Home Run Derby press conference at the Westin Hotel

On the ride back to GABP, Todd and his brother Charlie talked strategy for that night’s home run derby.  I’ll never forget Todd telling us that if he could keep his first-round opponent Prince Fielder to under double-digits, he’d could “take him.”  Prince reached double-digits, but you know how it ends.

Also on Monday, I was given a list of All-Stars from both leagues.  I was expected to take those listees to media areas set up in the ballpark where folks from FOX and ESPN (MLB ASG rights-holders) would interview and take photos of them.  All of the All-Stars on my list were very cordial and agreeable to what were asked of them.


I had similar duties on Tuesday, but instead of media areas, I was at the Westin Hotel to assist in getting All-Stars to their specific red carpet truck.  Because the event was more laid back and the players were permitted to bring their families with them, the All-Stars seemed to really enjoy it.  I really liked chatting with Mr. and Mrs. Madison Bumgarner.  They were very friendly and seemed down-to-earth.  It’s easy to root for the good ones, even if they don’t play on your favorite team.  Being nice goes a long way!

The game itself went by fast.  It felt like a few minutes passed between the time Mike Trout opened the game with a home run to him choosing what car he wanted as his MVP prize.

And just like that, it was all over.

Some of my personal favorite moments of the week:

  • Marlana VanHoose knocking the socks off 45,000 people with her rendition of the Star Spangled Banner prior to the Home Run Derby
  • The Mystics showing the world how talented they are
  • Spending time with my friends/colleagues from other teams and from Major League Baseball
  • Getting to see Cincinnati immerse itself in a much-needed baseball celebration
  • Seeing a packed ballpark Stand Up 2 Cancer
  • Feeling an overwhelming sense of pride for my co-workers who worked so hard for this


Well, that’s that. I can’t believe it was here and gone already.

Time to get back to work!

Expect good news,



From my pal @PattyMcIrish

Tonight the Cincinnati Reds are honored to host the Major League Baseball 86th All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile. During tonight’s pregame ceremonies, a group of local P&G & Kroger Hometown All-Stars will be identified from the Cincinnati Community who make a positive difference in the area followed by the famed Budweiser Clydesdales making a loop around the warning track.

We will announce the Franchise Four comprised of the most impactful players in their team’s history voted by fans across all Major League Baseball. The Reds Franchise Four will then make an appearance for a special ceremony on the field.

The All-Star players will line the field and be introduced Live on FOX prior to Columbus Native, Leo Welsh performing the Canadian Anthem. The United States National Anthem will be performed by Grammy-Award winning singer, songwriter and actress, Ciara. Presenting the colors will be a Joint Color Guard comprised of members of the US Army, Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard, & Marine Corps all based out of Cincinnati. A giant flag will cover the outfield held by more than 100 brave men & women from the Cincinnati Fire Department. A flyover will be provided at the end of the Anthem performed by four U.S. Navy FA-18 Super Hornets from VFA-213 Blacklions & VFA-87 War Party.

To conclude our on-field pregame ceremonies, Major League Baseball and the Cincinnati Reds will recognize the Greatest Living Players selected by fans across all Major League Baseball. This will be followed by the Game Ball being delivered to the mound from a representative from the Boys & Girls Club of America.

Following the conclusion of the game, Chevy and Major League Baseball will present the Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet.


I still have no words.  Let’s let the moving pictures do the talking…


From my pal @PattyMcIrish

Welcome to All-Star Workout Day!

Tonight, Great American Ball Park will host the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders LIVE on ESPN. Public gates will open at 5:00PM. Batting Practice for the All-Star Game participants will start at 5:15PM with the National League taking the field followed by the American League players starting at 6:15PM. The Home Run Derby participants will be able to take about 10 extra minutes of BP starting at 7:15PM.

During tonight’s pregame ceremonies, we will have representatives of the Breaking Barriers Program on the field for a check presentation. The in-park emcee will be Cincinnati’s Thom Brennaman who will be introducing the batters for the Derby competition with DJ Irie providing the walk up music. The DJ will be spinning at a booth at 2nd base which will be moved to right field during competition. Prior to the player introduction, there will be a pregame Budweiser Concert featuring Walk the Moon for two songs as part of the Pepsi Music Series.

Reds Hall of Famer, Ken Griffey Jr will be performing the ceremonial first pitch using a ball delivered from representatives from Gillette and P&G.

Between batters, we will have two finalist from the High School Home Run Derby compete for their own title. During the HRD Semifinals, three World War Two Veterans from the United States Navy, Marines, and Army will be recognized from their seats as the night’s Hometown Heroes. Also during the Semifinals, fans will be asked to stand and display placards with names of loved ones effected by cancer as a part of Stand Up 2 Cancer which will go live on ESPN. After the 3rd batter of the Semifinals, the champions from MLB Pitch, Hit, Run will have a presentation the field.

After tonight’s game, there will be a fireworks show with DJ Earworm providing the beats on field from the DJ Booth at 2nd base. Prior to the fireworks, the Gillette Home Run Derby Champion will be named and presented their award by Reds greats Dave Parker & Eric Davis.


Here are some photos from Sunday’s Legends/Celebrity Softball Game at Great American Ball Park…


From my pal @PattyMcIrish

SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game
There will be two main events happening at the ballpark today starting with the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game with the United States Team taking on the World Team consisting of the top prospects in the league. The World Team will take batting practice starting at 12:00pm with gates opening to the public at 1:00pm. The U.S. Team will take batting practice at 1:10pm.

FUTURES GAME LINEUP CARD -> 2015 SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game Scorecard

During pregame of the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game, roughly 200 kids from the Junior RBI League will line the field. Prior to the National Anthem, which will be performed by a quintet from the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra Brass Ensemble, nine members of the Boys & Girls Club of America will present the flags of the countries represented in the game. These countries include: The United States, Puerto Rico, The Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Taiwan, Curacao, Nicaragua, Cuba, & Mexico.

Performing a ceremonial first pitch will be Daron Bowling ,former attendee and current volunteer at the P&G Cincinnati MLB Urban Youth Academy. Catching the pitch for Daron will be the Director of the Urban Youth Academy Softball Program, Herb Riley.

The Budweiser Clydesdales will round the field prior to MLB Network going live to the game. The Clydesdales will come out of the centerfield gate and work their way around the field. After the Clydesdale clear, nine members of the Baseball Tomorrow Fund will take the field to the nine player positions for a glove exchange with the starting U.S. Team members.

At the end of the 1st inning, two lucky fans will be given an autographed jersey from the U.S. and World Team Managers, Ken Griffey & Tony Perez, respectively.

During the End of the 2nd Inning Sergeant Alexander Leveridge of the United States Marines will be honored as the All-Star Sunday Hometown Hero on top of the U.S. Team Dugout.

God Bless America will be performed during the 7th inning stretch by Cincinnati’s The Mistics.

There is a 10 inning maximum for this game.

30 Minutes Between Events:
• SiriusXM Futures MVP Presentation
• Mascots
• Wilson Glove giveaway (glove was designed by Reds 2nd Baseman, Brandon Phillips)
Billy Currington to perform in right field
• Fence to be put in the outfield to make it a softball field
• Celebrities & Legends take the field

Celebrity & Legends Softball Game
Attached, please find the full schedule for the Celebrity & Legends Softball Game. The start time is depending on the end of the Futures Game. The softball game will start approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the Futures Game.

From 4:00-5:30pm, the players will take batting practice next to the Rose Garden in the Reds Hall of Fame Batting Cages after being introduced while coming down the escalator in the Kroger Fan Zone. Fans are not allowed in the Rose Garden at this time as it is meant for guests of the players as well as a press option.

The softball game will be played for 6 innings. In the event of a tie, there will be a “Home Run Challenge”. A Celebrity and Legend from each team will represent in a 5 swing per participant challenge to determine the winner.

The on-field emcees for the softball game will be MLB Network’s Intentional Talk hosts Chris Rose & Kevin Millar. During the shortened inning breaks, there will be interviews with the players


Zip line Update – Saturday, July 11, 2015

The Cincinnati Zip Line Experience is scheduled to resume from 8-11PM tonight.

There are still tickets available in the 9-10PM and 10-11PM time slots. (8-9PM sold out)

Tonight’s rides can only be purchased at the Cincinnati Zip Line Experience offices at The Banks, corner of Freedom Way and Joe Nuxhall Way.

The Cincinnati Zip Line Experience is scheduled to be open tomorrow 10AM-9PM, Monday 10AM-9PM and Tuesday 10AM-12PM & 3-9PM.

Advance tickets (Sunday-Tuesday) are $35 at and Walk-up tickets are $45, subject to availability.



Demi Lovato, Snoop Dogg, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Leona Lewis and More to be Featured

Major League Baseball today announced its All-Star line-up of artists scheduled to perform as part of the Pepsi All-Star Week Music Series leading up to the 86th MLB All-Star Game at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati on Tuesday, July 14th. Multi-platinum selling recording artist Demi Lovato, entertainment icon Snoop Dogg, Grammy Award-winning rap duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, platinum-selling British band Rixton, Cincinnati-based platinum-selling pop-rock band Walk the Moon, platinum-selling country artist Billy Currington, Grammy Award-nominated artist Leona Lewis, North Carolina quartet The Avett Brothers, music artists Big Data, Natalie La Rose and Trevor Jackson, plus DJ Jack Novak, SKAM Artist DJ Irie and DJ Earworm, will perform at various events throughout All-Star Week as part of the Pepsi All-Star Week Music Series. MLB recently announced that Demi Lovato would replace Ariana Grande as headliner of the Budweiser All-Star Concert due to Grande’s recent health issues. The Pepsi All-Star Week Music Series marks the first time an MLB partner will present a combination of entertainment elements during MLB All-Star Week.

The Pepsi All-Star Week Music Series lineup is as follows:
Demi Lovato with musical guest Rixton – Tonight, 8:00 p.m. ET
o Budweiser All-Star Concert at Paul Brown Stadium
Billy Currington – Sunday, July 12th
o On-field performance between the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game and AS Legends & Celebrity Softball Game
Trevor Jackson – Sunday, July 12th
o Performance on the Pepsi Stage at MLB All-Star Week Block Party. This event is free and open to the public.
Leona Lewis, DJ Jack Novak – Sunday, July 12th
o All-Star Gala on Sunday
Snoop Dogg, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis & Vice – Sunday, July 12th
o All-Star Bash
Walk the Moon – Monday, July 13th
o On-field performance pres. by Budweiser including 2 songs prior to  Gillette HR Derby pres. by Head & Shoulders
Natalie La Rose – Monday, July 13th
o Performance on the Pepsi Stage at MLB All-Star Week Block Party. This event is free and open to the public.
DJ Irie – Monday, July 13th
o On-field performance during the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders including participant introductions and walk up music
DJ Earworm – Monday, July 13th
o On-field performance during the special fireworks show immediately following the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders
Big Data – Tuesday, July 14th
o Performance on the Pepsi Stage at MLB All-Star Week Block Party. This event is free and open to the public.
The Avett Brothers – Tuesday, July 14th
o All-Star Pre-Game Celebration

Separately, as previously announced outside of the Pepsi All-Star Week Music Series, Ciara will sing the U.S. National Anthem as part of the pre-game ceremony prior to the All-Star Game. Also part of the All-Star Game, “God Bless America” will be sung by Josh Turner. Coverage of the Midsummer Classic on FOX begins at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Additionally, before the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders gets underway on Monday, teenager Marlana VanHoose will sing the National Anthem. On Sunday, ahead of the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game, The Cincinnati Pops Orchestra Brass Ensemble will conduct a special rendition of the National Anthem, and later, The Mistics will sing “God Bless America.”

As part of its live All-Star Week programming, MLB Network will exclusively televise and will live stream the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game at 3:00 p.m. ET. The All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game will be televised by ESPN immediately following the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders on Monday, July 13th.

The Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders will be broadcast live by ESPN and, plus ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN and ESPN Radio in the U.S. as well as ESPN International beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET.

For more information on All-Star Week events fans can visit



The Cincinnati Zip Line Experience is currently on a two-hour delay for Saturday, July 11th. It is scheduled to open at approximately 1PM.

All tickets purchased for today’s Zip Line Experience between the times of 11am and 1pm will be rescheduled for available slots on Sunday, Monday or Tuesday. Additionally we will be adding a new 3-hour window today – from 8-11PM that will be available for scheduling later today. The previous scheduled hours for Saturday of 1-5PM are fully booked and unavailable as a rescheduled time.

Fans may call 513-765-7400, option 3, with questions or stop by the Cincinnati Zip Line Experience offices located on Freedom Way near the Reds Hall of Fame & Museum.

Today’s delay is a result of challenging construction brought on by the rainy weather system affecting our region this past week. We look forward to bringing this exciting attraction to life for fans celebrating our nation’s pastime in the Queen City this weekend. The Cincinnati Zip Line Experience is scheduled to be open on Sunday 10AM-9PM, Monday 10AM-9PM and Tuesday 10AM-12PM & 3-9PM.


Today (Friday) at lunchtime, we will convene on Holy Grail Banks for a #VoteCueto Campaign Party.  Johnny Beisbol has dropped to second place in the voting, which means, he’s not eligible to be an All-Star in Cincinnati.  Our efforts today at Holy Grail will be to push him back into first place and into the All-Star Game.  The Campaign Party ends at 4pm ET, the same time the Final Vote concludes.

It’s up to us, folks!  VOTE CUETO!

From now until 4pm, you can use the following methods to VOTE CUETO:

  • The online method – CLICK HERE
  • Tweeting your vote using the hashtag #VOTECUETO
  • Texting your vote: To receive the 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote mobile ballot, text the word VOTE to 89269 (USA) or 101010 (Canada). Msg & data rates may apply. Up to 5 messages may be received following your vote. Text STOP to opt-out at any time. For help, text HELP.  When you receive your ballot, text N1 for Johnny Cueto.  Again, Msg & data rates may apply.



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