Demo Video No. 02–Baseball Broadcasting Scorecards

With pro baseball already underway and summer collegiate ball right around the corner, this demo video will help you call your best baseball this summer! The quality of a broadcast is invariably a direct result of the amount of prep work the broadcasters involved put into the broadcast. With that in mind, I take a look at two different types of scorecards—one basic, the other more advanced—and discuss not only their layout but also how to best utilize them in setting yourself up for a great baseball call.

The first scorecard I bring up is a basic card from the Sportscasters’ Talent Agency of America website.

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A basic scorecard downloaded from the STAA website. For the first few baseball broadcasts of my career, I used this scorecard to prep beforehand and keep score during the game.

STAA is an invaluable resource and well-regarded agency for young and old sportscasters alike, and this card is great for broadcasters just getting into the business. Here is a link to the download file for it. It’s not flashy and includes all the necessary components, but it leaves marginal room for notes. A helpful trick to add extra space is expanding the document from Letter to Legal size, giving broadcasters an extra couple inches of room right on the card to add notes before the game. Even still, this format isn’t the best, and it requires you to print out (and organize) two separate scorecards so that both teams playing in the game are accounted for.

The other scorecard I examine is one designed for TV and radio broadcasters in Bob Carpenter’s Baseball Scorebook.

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A scan of a completed scorecard in Bob Carpenter’s Baseball Scorebook. This comes from a Rutgers-Penn State baseball game I called on BTN Plus on 4/23/16.

Carpenter, the current Washington Nationals play-by-play broadcaster on MASN, has created the sportscasting industry standard with this scorebook and hundreds of pro, minor league, and college broadcasters across the country use his book every season. I’m proudly one of them. Like I mention in the video, this scorebook (or some personally-crafted variation) is a necessity for any broadcaster who seriously wants to call baseball games for a living. In addition to all the essentials that the basic scorecard contains, the Carpenter scorecard has so many extra features, from detailed record charts and standings columns to 15 innings of baseball and fielding and umpire alignments. And, of course, there’s lots of space for notes throughout the entire card. Being able to pour all the diverse categories and types of info you need for a baseball broadcast onto a single scorecard is the sum reason why Bob Carpenter’s Baseball Scorebook is so popular among sportscasters.

Whatever scorecard you end up using for your next baseball card, my one word of advice would be to prep until you don’t think you can prep any further. This holds true in all genres and forms of broadcasting—especially here considering baseball’s slow pace—but you cannot fake the prep work once you’re on the air. So how do you prep? Let me know what scorecard you use in the comments below? If it’s something different than the two I discussed, include screenshots so we can compare!

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Demo Video No. 01–ePortfolios and Personal Websites

Sportscaster Central’s first demo video is up! I talk about ePortfolios, or personal websites that professionals make to showcase their work online, and use some examples to provide ideas and tips and what to do (and not to do) when making yours. In the current sportscasting job market, creating your own website is a must. It serves as a one-stop shop for potential employers who want to see the diverse things you do: play-by-play, writing, social media, and everything in between.

In the video, I examine the ePortfolio of Alex Rawnsley, a Canadian minor-league hockey broadcaster. His website is a near-perfect model for what a sportscaster’s own site should look like, with all the right content and info contained in it. I also take a look through the ePortfolio of Kekai Kotaki, a concept artist who’s done work for many popular video games. I use Kekai’s site as an alternate example, and I point out some things that he does differently–for better or worse–than Alex. Check out the video for my 5 favorite aspects of Alex’s site, some things Kekai’s website does very well, and great tips to keep in mind when making your ePortfolio.

Also, for those curious, I made the demo video (as I’ll make all of my videos) using Screencast-o-Matic, a freemium software that enables users to record video of their screens and through their webcam. The free version allows for up to 15 minutes of recording at a time, and the video quality is pretty solid. I also used Adobe Premiere, an industry-standard video editor, to edit the different segments of the video together. If–or, should I say, when–you create your own personal website, you can use it as a platform to create your own content! Whether it’s blogging about hot topics or creating videos about the sportscasting business like I do here, creating unique content on your site is a good way to add an extra touch and try to get a leg up in a crowded job market.

I hope you enjoy this first demo video, and I’m certain there’s some great tips in there that’ll help you make or improve your own ePortfolio. If you have any additional ideas about website-making, drop a comment below, and thanks for visiting Sportscaster Central!

Social Media Education with the Rutgers Future Scholars

Hey guys! Easy Bites, Eat Clean Eat Green, and I are hard at work producing our collaborative campaign to raise interest and drive traffic to the Rutgers Future Scholars Program. For my part in the project, I’ve produced a video on a topic that both the Future Scholars themselves and sportscasters should check out: social media. Because the RFS Program was created to help students acquire all the knowledge and skills they need to excel in high school and into college, I decided to address some best practices when interacting on social media so that the Scholars know how to stay safe and smart online. With America’s youngest generation making their first footprints into digital spaces, I decided that a primer on social media will help them put their best foot forward online.

I talk first about how the Scholars can protect their accounts. I delve into the correct privacy settings they should have for their profiles and how to use the block and report features on various platforms. Then, I talk more broadly about the dos and don’ts on what to say on social media, a topic that Scholars and sportscasters alike should be knowledgeable in. Finally, I wrap up with the number one lesson that anybody—young, old, small, or tall—who even turns on a computer should know: how to secure your password. In the wake of Laremy Tunsil’s dramatic fall in the 2016 NFL Draft, this is another area that the Scholars and sportscasters alike should be sharp in.

So whether you’re a Scholar, a sportscaster, or just interested in social media, please check out my video! Remember to also head over to the Rutgers Future Scholars website, where there’s more info on the program and details on how to donate and get involved. The RFS Program has helped over 1,800 kids achieve success in high school and go on to college, so I strongly encourage you to donate or become a Mentor to a child. Also, feel free to check out my collaborators’ blogs. Easy Bites and Eat Clean Eat Green have both produced great content providing food lessons and tips that will help the Scholars stay healthy and fueled up throughout high school and their busy lives in college.

Thank you so much for your support of the Rutgers Future Scholars and our collaborative campaign, and I hope you enjoy our content!