(February 25, 2015) Another seven STAA members have earned play-by-play opportunities in affiliated minor league baseball this summer. Each has been hired as a broadcasting and media relations assistants by their respective teams:
- Mike Baggerman, West Virginia Power
- Kyle Crooks, Jacksonville Suns
- Jess Knaster, Quad Cities River Bandits
- Nick Nollenberger, Kannapolis Intimidators
- Mason Robinson, Myrtle Beach Pelicans
- Justin Rocke, Tennessee Smokies
- Jared Shlensky, Cedar Rapids Kernels
With West Virginia, Mike Baggerman is returning to a position he held two years ago. He spent last summer with the Altoona Curve.
Kyle Crooks is new to affiliated baseball. He is a 2014 graduate of William Patterson University in Wayne, NJ., where he broadcast the school’s baseball games.
Jess Knaster spent last summer handling play-by-play and media for the St. Cloud Rox of the Northwoods League. He also broadcast baseball on the campus radio station as a student at San Jose State University.
Nick Nollenberger is a graduate of the University of Arizona, where he called Wildcats baseball. “He seemed like he’d be a good fit for our office, and when you have a staff of just four or five, we can’t really afford to have someone that won’t fit,” says Kannapolis Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations Josh Feldman.
“I know this wouldn’t have been possible without STAA and your knowledge, advice and feedback,” says Nollenberger.
A 2012 graduate of Texas State University, Mason Robinson broadcast for the Walla Walla Sweets in 2013. He spent last summer as a broadcasting assistant for home games with the San Antonio Missions, making the daily three-hour round trip from his home in Austin.
Jared Shlensky spent last summer as a broadcasting and media relations intern with the Joliet Slammers of the Frontier League. He is a 2014 graduate of North Central College in Naperville, IL.
Justin Rocke has broadcast baseball each of the past three summers. He spent 2012 and 2013 with the Bourne Braves of the Cape Cod League before moving into affiliated ball last season with Brevard County. He graduated in December from Penn State.
“I am extremely excited about working for the Smokies this summer,” says Rocke. “I am particularly looking forward to working with Mick (Smokies broadcaster Mick Gillispie). He is an experienced and veteran broadcaster who can help me improve my craft, as well as show me what it takes to be a successful full-time broadcaster at the Minor League and eventually Major League level.
“Thank you [to STAA] for all your advice and support throughout my job hunting process. I certainly would not have known about or got the position without STAA!”