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An Aspiring Journalist Recounts His MLB Press Box Experience



Pittsburgh Pirates, PNC Park, Fenway Sports Group

Sam Goldberg is a senior at Robert Morris University and an aspiring professional sports broadcaster. He shares his experience of having an opportunity to be in a Major League Baseball press box:

Chapters in my life are opening and closing as my time as an undergrad at Robert Morris University.

A new chapter will open as I join the workforce. As I am still looking into what I want to do I have had the pleasure of job shadowing John Perrotto, Pittsburgh Baseball Now’s editor-in-chief and my advisor for Sentry Media at Robert Morris University.

Perrotto gave me the opportunity to be in a major league press box when he allowed me to job shadow last Thursday at the Pittsburgh Pirates-Cincinnati Reds game at PNC Park.

Over the past couple of years, I have gotten to know John and the experiences he has had in baseball for so long has allowed me to have some pretty cool opportunities as a young person coming out of school.

John allowing me to shadow him is an immense opportunity to get a look at what it is like to be a professional journalist and what the job entails on a daily basis in covering baseball.

Being the newbie in the box is kind of scary if I am being honest. The first time being in an MLB press box is exciting and nerve wracking at the same time because you are getting to see some of your favorite ballplayers up close.

You also get the feeling that you do not want to mess up or ask the wrong questions and make a player or manager angry. Luckily though, I had John by my side to see what he has done for the past 36 years.

It is intimidating when you walk into that locker room for the first time and see some of the players.

Now I did this already, but ib a much smaller scale as an intern for the New Jersey Jackals of the independent Frontier League, so, the size difference is noticeable. With the Jackals we got to know the players well, so it was kind of a family feel,

I assume it’s like that seeing that John quite literally knows everyone when he walks into the building. But as you get more and more reps at it you will build the confidence to ask that first question. Now it might be a great question but at least you asked. I am still getting to that stage to ask my first question but eventually, when I build that confidence enough I will.

However, this experience of being in an MLB press box is eye-opening because it is a look at something that I would like to do full-time. Just like in baseball, the more reps you get the better you become and that can be the same for when it comes to reporting. The more reps you get the better your questions will be and the better your articles will be.

So, with that being said with my MLB debut in the books I am getting more comfortable being in the press box but still need to ask that first question. It is all about taking steps in the right direction and being in the press box and getting reps is a great first start.

John Perrotto is a columnist for Pittsburgh Baseball Now and has covered the Pittsburgh Pirates and MLB since 1988.

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