Saturday, January 21, 2012

On This Day in Reds History: Marty takes the Mic

"And this one belongs to the Reds!"

January 21st, 1974 - Filling a void left by play-by-play announcer Al Michaels - who left the team in the fall of 1973 to assume the same role with the Giants - Cincinnati hires 31-year old Marty Brennaman to take his place on the radio.

Before joining the Redlegs in '74, the Portsmouth, Virginia native graduated from the University of North Carolina with a communications degree in 1965. He spent four years with the Virginia Squires of the American Basketball Association before breaking onto the baseball scene in 1971 as the play-by-play man for the Triple-A Tidewater Tides (now known as the Norfolk Tide).

Now entering his 38th season as the voice of Reds baseball, Brennaman has called a countless number of memorable moments throughout his tenure. Some of the most notable include:

-Hank Aaron's record-tying 714th career home run in 1974
-Pete Rose's 4,192nd career hit in 1985
-Tom Browning's perfect game in 1988
-Ken Griffey, Jr.'s 500th career home run in 2004 and his 600th in 2008
-The Reds' World Series victories in 1975, 1976, and 1990
-Roy Halladay's no-hitter (second in postseason history) in game one of the 2010 NLDS between Cincinnati and Philadelphia.

In 2000, he was bestowed the Ford C. Frick Award given annually by the National Baseball Hall of Fame to a broadcaster "for major contributions to the game of baseball". Brennaman has been named Ohio Sportscaster of the Year twelve times and the Virginia Sportscaster of the Year four times.

Brennaman's service, loyalty, and effort to the franchise will cement his legacy in the minds of Queen City residents for years to come -- well past when his days as the radio voice of the Reds are over.

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