A Dodgers Blogger Night at Spectrum SportsNet LA Studios
Chavez Ravine Fiends was invited to Spectrum SportsNet LA's 'Dodgers Blogger Night' at their studios in El Segundo, CA. It was a night of behind-the-scenes looks, photo opportunities, laughs and of course, Dodger talk.
We were joined by the wonderful people from Dodger Blue, Dodgers Digest and Dodgers Index of LA Sports Media. Stacey Mitch, public relations director for Spectrum Networks, planned and organized the night.
The night began by meeting and greeting with the fellow bloggers before getting to go on the set of "Leadoff LA", where John Hartung, Ned Colletti and Jerry Hairston Jr. were doing their thing in the pregame show. The trio talked about recent games, that night's matchup with the Arizona Diamondbacks and the earlier news that Madison Bumgarner of the rival San Francisco Giants injured himself in a dirt bike accident.
A quick picture with the crew was taken before they were back on the air.
From the set, the group then moved to the control room. This is where the real magic happens. From a wall of screens to a team of people controlling what is going on on those screens, the control room is a bit intimidating for a first-timer. Luckily for the bloggers, they were just there to see the action and not participate. Here we saw the integration of graphics, highlights, clips and the talent in Arizona (Alanna Rizzo, Joe Davis and Orel Hershiser) into the "Leadoff LA" program.
The control room crew was very focused and very good at their job, but they also kept it light at times. Hershiser was teased about his wardrobe, and then that was brought into the broadcast.
From there, it was time for the main event of the night: the Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks game.
While the game got underway, the bloggers were able to ask questions about SportsNet LA programming and what went into running a full-on Dodgers channel.
Backstage: Dodgers, one of the more in-depth shows on SportsNet LA, is a year-long production that follows players behind-the-scenes and captures those moments that many fans will never get to see. A question was asked about the times that players visit places on the road, and if that is based on a players' wants or the show.
The example given was Yasiel Puig's now-famous trip to the zoo back in 2014. The Dodgers' outfielder was interested in going, and the crew went with him. What came from that show was a famous picture of Puig with a snake.
Then the bloggers were joined by Hartung, Colletti and Hairston to watch the game, and pick their brains a bit.
Hartung did what he does best and "host" the show, getting Colletti and Hairston to tell some of their best stories from their time in baseball.
Hairston brought the player's perspective, telling what he used to look for in his playing days, and of course, telling of his time with the Dodgers. Colletti made to sure remind us that Hairston is the reason for his television career, "If he had played better, I would still be GM of the Dodgers." The joke landed, as did many things that Colletti would say that night.
Colletti of course brought the executive's view, though he did add that he watches games a lot differently these days. And with less profanity. He also mentioned that he's starting to get addicted to Twitter, though he still doesn't know what he's doing yet, and that he'll be on Instagram by 2020 and Snapchat by 2022.
As the game went on, the trio had to prepare for the postgame show and the bloggers had to get to work for their respective sites. The game wasn't much fun after a while, thanks to a nine-run eighth inning for Arizona that turned a one-run lead into a 13-5 deficit.
In the end, it was a fun night at the SportsNet LA studios. Everyone learned what goes into a game night behind-the-scenes and just how much work is put in. Although that was just a small piece of the puzzle.