MILWAUKEE -- Lane Grindle, who graduated from USD in 2004 with a degree in contemporary media and journalism (now called media & journalism), will sit alongside baseball legend Bob Uecker this season as one of three radio announcers for the Milwaukee Brewers baseball team.
Grindle started his new job this spring after 10 years with the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers as an announcer for a variety of sports and a member of the sports marketing team. The opportunity to join the Brewers broadcasting staff came at a time when his wife, Ali, and four children -- ranging from an 8-month-old to a first-grader -- were young enough to make the move without much disruption.
“This was such a good opportunity that we thought this would be the last chance to make that jump and give the MLB thing a shot,” he said.
Grindle will serve as the play-by-play announcer on Brewers away games when Uecker doesn’t travel with the team, although he will get the chance to call some games alongside the baseball legend, he said. “This is a hall-of-famer, one of the best that has ever done it,” Grindle said of Uecker. “I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t part of the appeal to get a chance to work around somebody like that.”
At 34, Grindle said he is one of the youngest major league announcers. He credits his experiences at USD with giving him a head start in the field. While he came to USD as a sprinter on the track team, he soon realized his talents leaned toward broadcasting and started working for Yankton’s Culhane Communications in his junior year. Calling area high school basketball games for local radio affiliates evolved into sideline reporting for the Coyote football team and announcing the men’s and women’s basketball games.
“I was able to get so much hands-on experience while I was still in college that I got a jumpstart on my career compared to a lot of other guys,” he said.
While his announcing experience spans a number of different sports, Grindle said baseball play-by-play sportscasting requires a more thoughtful approach. “Baseball is one of the most unique sports to call because there is a lot of down time,” he said. “Some of the great announcers are able to tell a story while calling the game. You can really dive deep. The pace isn’t quite the same as basketball or football, but it gives you the luxury to make the broadcast yours.”