Marty Brennaman, the Hall of Fame broadcaster synonymous with the Cincinnati Reds, has announced the 2019 season will be his last in the radio booth.
Brennaman, 76, broke the news at Wednesday afternoon’s Reds on Radio affiliates luncheon at Great American Ball Park, and the Reds posted a video of Brennaman explaining the decision on the team’s Twitter account.
“To say that it’s been an incredible ride, that’s what it’s been,” Brennaman said, addressing fans in the video, his voice cracking with obvious emotion. “You folks have had a lot to do with it. You accepted me as one of your own back in 1974. I feel like I’ve had a love affair that’s gone on for four and a half decades because you all have been so good to me. ... Nobody can love you as much as I do. I’m going to miss a lot of things, but you folks are right there at the top of the list.”
Brennaman received the Ford C. Frick Award at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York in 2000. The award is presented each year by the Hall of Fame to a broadcaster “for major contributions to the game of baseball.” He joined Red Barber (WSAI, 1934-1938), Al Helfer (WSAI, 1935-36) and Russ Hodges (WFBE, 1932) as the only Reds announcers to receive the Hall of Fame’s broadcasting award.
The 2019 season will be Brennaman’s 55th as a broadcaster, his 46th in Cincinnati. He joined the Reds radio team in 1974 and for 31 seasons (1974-2004) shared the 700 WLW Radio booth with Reds Hall of Fame pitcher Joe Nuxhall.
Among his many honors and other hall of fame inductions, Brennaman received the Tom Hammond Lifetime Achievement Award for Sports Broadcasting, presented by the Bluegrass Sports Commission in 2013.
▪ Reds fans in Lexington will have a chance to meet Brennaman this weekend, when the team’s annual Caravan makes a stop at Red Mile on Saturday afternoon.
Scheduled to join Brennaman from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. are Reds catchers Tucker Barnhart and Curt Casali, minor league outfielder Taylor Trammell, General Manager Nick Krall and Gapper, the team’s mascot.