Entering his 45th season as a broadcaster for his hometown team, calling games on 620 WTMJ and the Brewers Radio Network, Bob Uecker celebrates his 60th year in baseball.
Uecker earned the prestigious Ford C. Frick Award in 2003 and will forever be recognized in Baseball's Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. On July 27, 2003, he made one of the most memorable speeches in Hall of Fame induction history as he left his audience, including former President George H. Bush, in tears from laughter. Also in 2003, he became a member of the Brewers Walk of Fame, which is located near home plate outside of Miller Park.
In 2012, Uecker was inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Broadcasting Hall of Fame. In March of this year, he was honored with the Lombardi Foundation's Award of Excellence for his role in helping raise funds and awareness for cancer research.
On August 31, 2012, Uecker was given a very special honor as a statue bearing his likeness was dedicated outside Miller Park. The ceremony was attended by celebrities, current and former players, family and friends. Uecker's statue joined those previously dedicated to Major League Baseball Commissioner Allan H. "Bud" Selig and Hall of Famers Hank Aaron and Robin Yount.
On April 25, 2014, a second statue was dedicated in Uecker's honor, this one in the last row of the "Uecker Seats" on Miller Park's Terrace Level. The statue commemorates Uecker's Miller Lite commercials in which he famously delivered the often repeated line, "I must be in the front row!" The statue allows fans a special photo opportunity. Also in 2014, Uecker was enshrined into the new Brewers Wall of Honor inaugural class.
Known across the country as "Mr. Baseball," Uecker is highly respected in the industry. In 2001, he was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame, where he joined such baseball broadcasting luminaries as Vin Scully, Mel Allen, Red Barber, Ernie Harwell and Jack Brickhouse, as well as other American icons such as Bob Hope, Jack Benny, Edward R. Murrow and Orson Welles. In 2011, he was inducted into the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Hall of Fame.
Uecker has been named Wisconsin Sportscaster of the Year five times during his career and was inducted into the Wisconsin Sports Hall of Fame in 1998. Also for his efforts, he was inducted into the Wisconsin Performing Artists Hall of Fame in 1993, which was established in 1983 to honor nationally and internationally known performing artists with Wisconsin ties. In 1994, Uecker was elected to the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame. In January 1995, he earned the "Big B.A.T." Award from the Baseball Assistance Team at a dinner in New York City for his continuing support of former Major League stars who are in need of assistance.
Uecker's big break can be traced to a 1969 visit with Al Hirt, a renowned jazz trumpeter from New Orleans, which would alter his life forever. Hirt opened a small nightclub in Atlanta and asked Uecker to come on stage. Hirt was so impressed that he arranged an appearance for Uecker on The Tonight Show, starring Johnny Carson. Uecker became one of Carson's favorite guests, making some 100 appearances before Carson retired in 1992. He also made appearances on The Mike Douglas and Merv Griffin Shows, Late Night with David Letterman and as guest host on Saturday Night Live.
Uecker became a national celebrity, and the ABC Network took advantage of his popularity. He made appearances on The Superstars and The Midnight Special, which opened the door for more high-profile appearances.
A versatile talent, Uecker's credits go far beyond guest appearances and play-by-play. In 1985, he launched a television acting career as one of the stars of ABC's sitcom Mr. Belvedere, which put 122 episodes into syndication. He also hosted two syndicated television shows, Bob Uecker's Wacky World of Sports and Bob Uecker's War of the Stars.
Uecker was one of the Miller Lite All-Stars in popular commercials for the beer during the 1980s. He was also cast as a radio announcer in the movie Major League, which was filmed at County Stadium, and Major League II. Uecker even made appearances in the professional wrestling circuit as he served as a host at WrestleMania III and WrestleMania IV, earning him a spot in the WWE Hall of Fame in 2010.
Uecker's experience broadcasting Brewers games both on radio and television gained him national recognition as he went on to serve as color commentator for ABC Sports coverage of Monday Night Baseball, the League Championship Series and World Series.
Uecker's accomplishments are not limited to the electronic medium. He authored a book entitled "Catcher in the Wry," a humorous look back on the years he spent as a catcher with the Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves, St. Louis Cardinals and Philadelphia Phillies during six seasons in the Major Leagues. One of his career highlights as a player came in 1964, when he was a member of the world champion St. Louis Cardinals.
Despite his national attention and success, Uecker never forgot his roots. His philanthropic efforts benefit several local organizations, including the United Performing Arts Fund, the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer Fund, the Milwaukee Symphony, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee and Big Brothers/Big Sisters. In addition, Uecker is an advocate for organizations that battle cystic fibrosis and heart disease, is involved with the Wisconsin Department of Tourism and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Joe Block has detailed Milwaukee Brewers play-by-play action on radio since joining the team in 2012.
Prior to making his home in Wisconsin, Block crisscrossed the nation, calling more than 1,000 professional baseball games over a decade while living in all four mainland time zones.
Aside from baseball, Block calls NBA games on a fill-in basis and has also described play-by-play for major college basketball and football on regional television networks. He works locally and nationally as a voice actor when his schedule permits.
In his free time, Block enjoys playing pick-up sports, touring Wisconsin and involving himself with community outreach projects.
A native of Roseville, Michigan, and a graduate of Michigan State University, Block and his wife, Bethany, a registered nurse, reside on Milwaukee's East Side.
Fans can follow Block on Twitter at @joe_block.
Jeff Levering spent two seasons (2013-14) as the lead broadcaster of the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox prior to joining the Brewers this past January.
Levering also spent three seasons (2010-12) as the radio voice and manager of public relations for the Double-A Springfield Cardinals. Prior to arriving in Springfield, he spent three seasons (2007-09) as director of broadcasting/media relations for the Class-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes.
Levering began his professional broadcasting career in 2005 as a field reporter and associate producer for Fox Sports West/Prime Ticket in Los Angeles covering the Angels, Dodgers and Lakers.
Levering received his degree in broadcast journalism from Chapman University in Orange, CA, where he also played baseball all four years. He was the starting designated hitter on the 2003 D-III national championship team.
Jeff and his wife, Ashley, have a son, Brock.
Kent Sommerfeld is in his 30th season as the producer of Brewers radio broadcasts.
A Wisconsin native, he has acquired a wide range of experience during his tenure in the broadcasting field.
Sommerfeld has been the radio producer/director for the Marquette University radio network since 1990 and periodically fills in doing men's basketball play-by-play. He was named director of the Marquette basketball radio network in 1999 and does play-by-play for the Marquette University women's basketball radio broadcasts.
Sommerfeld attended the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where he earned a degree in communications and broadcast journalism. While at Whitewater, Sommerfeld was the sports director of Cable TV-6, a wing of Whitewater's cable system, as well as the co-host of Sports Chat, a sports talk show on WSUW-Radio.
In addition to his radio accolades, Sommerfeld has worked with ESPN's technical staff on several events in the midwest. He also worked at KRBC-TV, the NBC affiliate in Abilene, Texas, as a sports/news photojournalist.
Born in Milwaukee, Sommerfeld attended Brookfield Central High School. Kent and his wife, Karen, reside in New Berlin with their sons, Peter, Luke and Donovan.
Brian Anderson was named Brewers play-by-play announcer on January 10, 2007. Anderson begins his ninth season as a Major League broadcaster. In January of 2014, he was once again named the Wisconsin Sportscaster of the Year by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters of America for the second straight year.
For the past seven seasons, Anderson has been tabbed by TBS to do play-by-play for the network's coverage of the postseason. In 2011, he called the Brewers-Cardinals NLCS. In 2010, he was behind the mic for Roy Halladay's historic no-hitter for the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 1 of the NLDS vs. Cincinnati.
Since 2010, Anderson has called network play-by-play for Turner Sports' Sunday MLB on TBS package. He will continue to call select Sunday national games in 2015. In addition to baseball, he has covered the NCAA Basketball Tournament for Turner/CBS Sports since 2012, the NBA on TNT since 2014, and most recently has added the NFL on CBS to his duties.
Anderson joined the Brewers from Golf Channel, where he was a play-by-play announcer from 2003-06. In his role there, he served as a host for a variety of the network's events, including the PGA Tour and Nationwide Tour. Anderson also worked at FOX Sports Southwest, calling NCAA college basketball from 2002-07 and serving as a sideline reporter for the San Antonio Spurs from 1999-2007, where he saw the Spurs win three NBA championships.
From 1998-2000, Anderson handled Minor League and Little League Baseball telecasts for ESPN. He received his start in baseball with the San Antonio Missions, the Double-A, Texas League affiliate of the San Diego Padres, serving as a radio/television play-by-play announcer from 1994-2003.
Anderson played catcher on the nationally-ranked baseball team at St. Mary's University (Texas) and graduated cum laude from the school in 1993 with a degree in English-communications. His brother, Mike, had a stint in the majors as a pitcher with the Cincinnati Reds (1993) and is currently a Major League scout in the Texas Rangers organization.
Brian and his wife, Michele, and daughter, Maddy, live in Hartland, Wisconsin.
Bill Schroeder returns for his 21st season as color commentator on Brewers telecasts.
Popular with the fans, Schroeder began his career behind the mic as the Brewers' color man after a distinguished playing career. He is familiar with the business of talking baseball, co-hosting Baseball Sunday in 1994 and Talkin' Brewers on WTMJ-Radio from 1998-2000. As a part of his work on the 2007 Brewers Preview Show, Schroeder and the FS Wisconsin team were awarded a regional Emmy Award.
For the past 12 winters, Schroeder has served as the coordinator of Brewers Fantasy Camp. The camp is always a hit, selling out each year at the Brewers' Spring Training home in Maryvale, Arizona.
Schroeder spent eight seasons in the big leagues with the Brewers and California Angels, posting a career-best .332 batting average in 1987. He caught Juan Nieves' no-hitter on April 15, 1987 at Baltimore in the midst of the team's Major League record-tying 13-0 start. In addition, he clubbed a career-high 14 home runs and had 42 RBI in a backup role that season. Schroeder was traded to the California Angels following the 1988 campaign before retiring in 1990.
An active member in the community, Schroeder won the Athletes for Youth Good Guy Award in 1988.
Born in Baltimore and raised in Princeton, New Jersey, Schroeder graduated from West Windsor Plainsboro High School, where he earned All-State honors his junior and senior years. He attended Clemson University, leading the Tigers to the Atlantic Coast Conference title in 1978 and 1979.
"Rock" and his wife, Kate, reside in New Berlin, Wisconsin. He has two daughters, Lindsey and Mallory, a son, Billy, and a granddaughter, Madalyn. The couple also has a miniature dachshund named Rupert.
Schroeder tweets from @BrewersFanCamp.
Jerry Augustine enters his eighth season as an analyst with FOX Sports Wisconsin.
Augustine played his entire 10-year Major League career with the Brewers after being drafted out of the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse in 1974. In 1976, he was named to the American League All-Rookie Team and was selected by Milwaukee baseball writers as Brewers Rookie of the Year. In June 2014, Augustine was part of the inaugural class of inductees to the Brewers Wall of Honor.
A native of Kewaunee, Wisconsin, Augustine was high school teammates with Jack Novak, who later played in the NFL, and Dale Koehler, who went on to start for the University of Wisconsin basketball team for three years.
Following his playing career, Augustine served as head coach of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee baseball team from 1995-2006, where he compiled a record of 347-297-1. During that time, his Panther teams made three appearances in the NCAA Tournament.
Fans can follow Augustine on Twitter at @Jaugie46.
Craig Coshun begins his 15th season covering the Brewers as a pre-game host and sideline reporter for select games on FOX Sports Wisconsin. Coshun has also filled in as the play-by-play announcer during his time with the team. Following the baseball season, he performs the same duties for the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks.
Coshun is a veteran sportscaster in the state, calling several events for the University of Wisconsin, the Big Ten Network and the ESPN family of networks. He has also handled the WIAA state high school football championships.
Coshun, along with his FS Wisconsin production team, have captured three Emmy Awards for their work covering the Brewers and Bucks.
Coshun began his television broadcast career in Eau Claire at NBC affiliate WEAU before landing in Madison, where he was the sports director at NBC affiliate WMTV until 2000. He also co-hosts Brewers Extra Innings postgame show on WTMJ Radio.
He is a graduate of UW-Whitewater. Fans can find Coshun on Twitter at @CraigCoshun.
Telly Hughes enters his seventh season as an on-field reporter for Milwaukee Brewers telecasts on FOX Sports Wisconsin.
Hughes, a former college-level pitcher, played at Illinois State University, where he majored in mass communication and broadcast journalism. Upon graduation, he started building his reputation in the world of sports broadcasting. He began his career as a teleprompter operator for a morning show in St. Louis, where he shadowed sports reporters at the station.
Hughes was later hired as a weekend sports reporter for WMAZ in Macon, Georgia. He continued to gain experience in front of the camera and eventually moved to Des Moines, Iowa, to work for NBC affiliate, WHO. Hughes returned home to St. Louis to work for KPLR before making his way to FOX Sports North in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He spent a year at FOX Sports North, covering the Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Wild.
Hughes made the transition to FOX Sports Wisconsin in February 2009. Over the last six years, he has worked as a reporter and host for FOX Sports Wisconsin, covering the regional network's pre-game, sideline, and post-game coverage for the Brewers and Milwaukee Bucks.
A native of East St. Louis, Illinois, Hughes resides in Milwaukee with his family.
Matt Lepay returns for his second season as a member of the television broadcast team on FOX Sports Wisconsin after joining the Club in January 2014.
Lepay is a seven-time winner of the Wisconsin Sportscaster of the Year Award, presented by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. Since 1994, Lepay has been the voice of Wisconsin Badgers football, and the 2014-15 season was his 27th as the men's basketball play-by-play announcer.
In his time with the University of Wisconsin, Lepay has announced five Rose Bowl Games and 17 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament appearances, including the Badgers' trip to the 2000 and 2014 Final Four.
Lepay joined WIBA Radio in Madison in 1994 after a stint as sports director at WTSO Radio (also in Madison). He authored a book entitled "Why Not Wisconsin?," released in 2012. The book chronicles the Wisconsin football and basketball programs since he arrived in Wisconsin in 1988. In addition to his play-by-play duties, Lepay handles a number of speaking appearances on behalf of UW Athletics.
A native of Dayton, Ohio, Lepay and his wife, Linda, reside in Cross Plains, Wisconsin. Lepay received a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University.
Fans can follow Lepay on Twitter at @MattLepay.
Prior to joining FOX Sports Wisconsin, Minnaert worked for Play ON! Sports Midwest on high school state championships across the midwest, including FOX Sports Wisconsin, Fox Sports Midwest and CSN Chicago. She also worked as a feature reporter on FOX Sports Wisconsin Prep Zone.
A native of Madison, Wisconsin, Minnaert graduated from Edgewood High School. In 2009, she graduated from Marquette University with degrees in journalism and Spanish language and literature.
Minnaert and FOX Sports Wisconsin traveled to the Dominican Republic in November 2013 for the "Baseball in the Dominican Republic" series, including features on the Brewers academy, Carlos Gomez, and the Emmy-nominated "Baseball in the Dominican Republic: Jean Segura."
Aside from her role on Brewers broadcasts, Minnaert also works on Milwaukee Bucks broadcasts, WIAA football state championships, and Hockey Day Minnesota for FOX Sports North.
Minnaert can be found on Twitter at @SophiaMinnaert.
Dave Nelson enters his fifth season as an analyst for FS Wisconsin broadcasts. He also serves as Brewers Director of Alumni Relations and leads the team's Speakers Bureau. In his front office role, Nelson maintains a database of former Brewers players as well as organizes events for Brewers alumni.
Prior to his current role, Nelson served as Brewers first-base coach from 2003-06. In 2001 and 2002, he was a minor-league outfield instructor. Nelson began his Major League coaching career in 1981 with Chicago-AL and later spent time coaching in Cleveland, Oakland and Montreal. In 1980, he was on the coaching staff at Texas Christian University.
Nelson enjoyed a 10-year Major League playing career from 1968-77. The former outfielder played for Cleveland, Washington, Texas and Kansas City. He was named to the American League All-Star team in 1973.
Born in Fort Still, Oklahoma, Nelson went on to graduate from Junipero Serra High School in California. He attended Compton Junior College for one year and Los Angeles State College for two years. Nelson also served in the Army Reserve for six years. He currently splits time between Bradenton, Florida and Milwaukee.
Molina continued his broadcast career after relocating to Chicago. From 1982-93, he worked for WOPA radio and WOJO radio in the news departments and as a morning DJ. In Chicago, he served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bears (1987-88), Cubs (1987-88), White Sox (1992-99) and Bulls (1992-99).
Molina worked for ESPN from 1998-2000, covering the baseball playoffs and the 1998 World Series. In 2005, he once again covered the baseball playoffs and the World Series, this time for Univision Radio. Most recently, Molina covered the Chicago Bears preseason for Telemundo Chicago and continues to cover the Milwaukee Brewers for Telemundo Wisconsin.
Molina is a 1977 graduate of Interamerican University of Puerto Rico, where he earned a degree in social sciences. He did post-graduate work at Governor's State University in University Park, Ill.
Molina served in Vietnam from 1966-69 with the Army, and then again in 1973 with the Navy. Chicago is home to Molina and his wife, Enid, their four children, and three grandchildren.