When I was a little kid, my dream job was to be a sports broadcaster. To “practice” my sportscasting skills, I’d announce myself shooting baskets in the garage, or turn off the commentary on sports video games and do it myself (the latter of which I still do to this day, because I can’t stand video game commentary.) I have had a fascination with those who describe sporting events as they happen for as long as I can remember. Because of this, a lot of my favorite sports memories of all time stick out in my mind for how they were called just as much as the plays or the games themselves. With longtime Minnesota Twins play-by-play man Dick Bremer retiring this week, I thought I’d revisit a few of his calls that are most memorable to me, as a thank you to the man who has called almost every Twins game in my entire life.
On August 17th, 2010, the Twins were playing the Chicago White Sox at then brand-new Target Field. I was nine years old at the time. Minnesota was in first place by three games over the Sox, so this was a pivotal game. In the 10th inning with the Twins trailing 6-5, Jim Thome stepped in the batters box. Take it away, Dick.
I think my favorite thing about this call is that after exclaiming “AND THERE IT GOES!”, Bremer didn’t say another word until Thome was mobbed by his teammates at home plate. Many of the best broadcasters are able to take a step back and let a big moment speak for itself, and this is a textbook example of that.
Fast forward to July 10th, 2015. The Twins are hosting the Detroit Tigers, and they hold a 2.5 game lead for the 2nd AL Wild Card spot. I was 14 years old at the time, and I actually wasn’t watching the game. Instead, I was sleeping over at a friend’s house and periodically checking my phone for score updates. The last time I checked the score that night, it read “DET 6, MIN 1, Mid 9th.” I assume that the Twins are about to lose, so I stop checking and go back to playing Wii. The next morning, I see this.
Again, Bremer lets the moment speak for itself here. After exclaiming “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?”, he waits until Brian Dozier crosses the plate to say “THE MOST ELECTRIC MOMENT AT TARGET FIELD IN YEARS!” Also of note, Bert Blyleven saying “you didn’t make the All Star team, but you just helped beat the Detroit Tigers!” is funny to look back on now, because of course Brian Dozier did make the All Star team as an injury replacement. He hit a homer late in the game in the All Star Game too, because of course he did.
One more Dick Bremer call that is among my favorites of all time is his call of Twins Hall of Famer Joe Mauer’s 2000th hit. Mauer came into the game that night in April 2018 needing two hits to reach the 2000 mark. Every longtime Twins fan knew the milestone was coming, and that it was only a matter of time until he joined Rod Carew and Kirby Puckett as the only players to record 2000 hits or more in a Twins uniform. And we were all hoping it would happen in front of the home crowd. It did.
I still get chills every time I watch this clip and hear Bremer say “the hometown kid reaches his milestone at home!” Bremer has literally been following the Twins for their entire existence, and he’s seen several generations of players come through the Twin Cities. It’s also pretty rare for a player to spend their entire career with one team. The hometown kid accomplished so much while he was in a Twins uniform, pretty much all with another hometown guy in the broadcast booth.
It’s impossible to tell the story of Twins baseball without Dick Bremer. The Twins have been around for 63 years, and Bremer has been behind the mic for 40 of those. It is going to be incredibly difficult for me to process someone else doing Twins TV play by play on Opening Day 2024, as I’m sure will be the case for many other fans throughout Twins Territory. For the vast majority of living Twins fans, Dick Bremer is the only TV play by play man they’ve ever known. A left-hand toast to you, Mr. Bremer. Thank you for helping me and countless others fall in love with the Minnesota Twins.