‘I never dreamed of this’: Reds announce Hall of Fame, farewell tributes to Marty Brennaman

‘I never dreamed of this’: Reds announce Hall of Fame, farewell tributes to Marty Brennaman
The team announced farewell tributes and team Hall of Fame plans for their man-behind-the-mic Marty Brennaman Friday as he enters the final weeks of his 46-year career as the Reds play-by-play broadcaster. (Credit: Cincinnati Reds) (Source: Cincinnati Reds)

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Marty Brennaman’s career as the legendary voice of the Reds is rounding third and heading for home.

The team announced farewell tributes and team Hall of Fame plans for their man-behind-the-mic Friday as he enters the final weeks of his 46-year career as the Reds play-by-play broadcaster.

Brennaman was in attendance for the announcement.

“I never dreamed of this,” he said tearfully to a crowded room.

“Having Marty Brennaman’s incredible career come to a close as we are concluding our 150th year of Reds baseball is pretty special,” Reds President and COO Phil Castellini said.

Reds officials say Brennaman’s final game broadcast will be Sept. 27, a Thursday afternoon game against the Milwaukee Brewers.

“It was important to me that my last regular season broadcast happened at home, so I won’t go to Pittsburgh with the team to finish the season,” Brennaman said.

Considering all Brennaman has experienced with the team, the Reds don’t plan to send the broadcaster out quietly.

They Sept. 3, 4, and 7, Brennaman will visit with fans on the concourses at Great American Ball Park before games. Then, he will do the full game broadcast Sept. 20 in a temporary radio booth at Gapper’s Alley directly behind section 119.

He will do the same for the pre-game broadcasts Sept. 24 and Sept. 25.

“The idea is to bring Marty out of the booth and amongst the fans at Great American Ball Park,” said Castellini. “Watching Marty host the radio pre-game show or call an inning will be an unforgettable experience for our fans.”

The team also says as part of his final regular season series Sept. 25, Brennaman’s son Thom will join him in the radio booth for the entire broadcast.

For his final two games, the team says Brennaman will be joined by his regular radio partner Jeff Brantley.

“I wanted my final game to be business as usual, doing the broadcast from the booth. It is going to be very emotional for me and I want to savor every moment,” said Brennaman.

During his final game Sept. 26, the team says the first 20,000 fans at GABP will receive a Reds transistor radio so they can hear Brennaman’s last call while in the park.

The team also says that after the game all fans will be invited onto the field to take part in a special program to honor Brennaman, who will be on stage with Jim Day at the pitcher’s mound.

Reds officials also announced the following giveaways:

  • Tuesday, Sept. 24 - Marty Brennaman Oversized Replica Ticket presented by Humana
    • Replica ticket from Marty’s first Reds broadcast on April 4, 1974, to the first 20,000 fans.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 25 - Commemorative Marty Brennaman Print presented by Clark Schaefer Hackett
    • Print celebrating Marty’s selection as the 2020 Reds Hall of Fame Inductee to the first 20,000 fans.
  • Thursday, Sept. 26 - Reds Handheld Radio presented by Kroger and Laura’s Lean Beef
    • Transistor radio with earbuds to the first 20,000 fans. Fans will be able to tune to 94.5 FM from their seats in the ballpark to listen to Marty’s farewell call.

As for what’s planned once his career comes to a close, The Reds announced Brennaman will be the one and only induction into their 2020 Reds Hall of Fame.

The distinction as the sole inductee came from the Reds Hall of Fame Board of Directors, the teams says.

“Our Board of Directors felt strongly that Marty’s 46-years as the Reds play-by-play announcer along with his efforts supporting the communities throughout Reds Country, and his extensive list of awards and accolades was indeed extraordinary and deserving of his election to the Reds Hall of Fame,” Reds Hall of Fame Executive Director Rick Walls said.

The induction will include an on-field ceremony Saturday, April 25 before the Reds play the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The 2020 Reds Hall of Fame Induction Gala will be held Sunday evening on April 26.

“Marty Brennaman’s voice is virtually inseparable from the 46 years of Reds’ history immortalized through his calls,” said Castellini. “Marty’s talent has greatly contributed to the vitality of this franchise, making this a well-deserved honor for him.”

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