When Michael Reddy ’08 arrives at ESPN headquarters on a Sunday afternoon in June, Tiger Woods is well on his way to tying Jack Nicklaus with his 73rd PGA Tour victory, and the St. Louis Cardinals are on a quest to score their first run in three games against the New York Mets. As a production assistant, Reddy’s job is to tell the best story of each game in short, two-minute highlight reels on ESPN’s flagship news show, “SportsCenter.” From logging all the plays to working with a producer and editor to prepare the videos for air, the former WNJR sportscaster and men’s golf captain gives us a glimpse into his 10-hour workday.
To find out what makes the cut for Sunday Night Baseball, read about the second half of Reddy’s day below. For the first half of Reddy’s day covering the Memorial Tournament, go to page 16 in the print edition.
After a quick dinner, I get back to my work station during the second inning of the Cardinals/Mets game. I print my rosters and lineup card for the game and set up my log. I also touch base with my supervisor for the game. The biggest thing heading into this game is that the Cardinals offense has been terrible. Mets pitcher Johan Santana threw the first no-hitter in Mets franchise history on Friday night and R.A. Dickey shut out the Cardinals on Saturday. It will be interesting to see if the Cardinals start to hit on Sunday. Also, the Mets will honor former pitcher John Franco into the franchise's hall of fame. The video of the ceremony before the game will be the first six seconds of the highlight.
Mets pitcher Jonathon Niese has eight strikeouts and the Mets are ahead 1-0. I decide to show several of Niese's strikeouts to start the highlight in hopes that the Mets will score more runs later in the game.
Mets outfield Kirk Nieuwenhuis rips a two-run home to right field and the Mets take a 3-0 lead. That will be in the highlight.
Niese strikes out his 10th batter of the game, which is new career high. That also will be in the highlight.
Mets centerfielder Andres Torres throws out David Freese at home plate to end the inning. This play is significant because the Cardinals now have not scored a run in their last 25 innings. I alert Justin, my supervisor, about the stat and he agrees it's worth noting. I have the stat confirmed by research and have the fact bar built. This play also impacts my plan. I decide to only show one of Niese's strikeouts for time purposes. At this point, I only have a minute in the show and I hit in the third segment. This means the turnaround won't be as tight as the golf tournament was earlier in the day.
The Cardinals score their first run in 26 and 2/3 innings but still trail 6-1. There is a really good video of Cardinals fans cheering sarcastically about them finally scoring a run. The play and the shots of the fans are the last things in the highlight as the Mets go on to win 6-1.
Unlike earlier in the day, the story I decided to tell (the Franco pregame ceremony, Nieuwenhuis's home run, Niese's 10th strikeout, Freese thrown out at the plate, and the Cardinals finally scoring a run) is on time, which makes the edit process much easier. Justin checks my shot sheet. My editor Rob finishes the clip and gets it ready for air, then publishes it to the server. I drop the clip and cut sheet into the rundown and deliver the shot sheet to the anchor.
After I re-log some key plays from the golf tournament and baseball game that I missed while I was in the edit room, I check in with Justin about how the day went and leave work to head home.