The photograph in the previous post merits an explanation.
In 1998, when interleague play was still new, the San Diego Padres made it to the World Series against the vaunted Yankees. After he and his teammates won the NLCS, one of the first things Gwynn mentioned was that he would finally get to play in Yankee Stadium, and moreover, hear his name announced over the PA system by Bob Sheppard. I knew both men and decided to introduce them, and listened in delight as the former St John’s speech and public speaking professor talked the nuances of diction with the batting champion who used to take communications courses at San Diego State.
Afterwards, as I escorted Bob back upstairs, I asked Bob if I could record him introducing a hypothetical Gwynn at bat, so I could transfer it to one of those “talking birthday card” electronic chips. Bob not only obliged, but asked me to confirm for him Tony’s position and number just to make sure. “We can’t have any mistakes.” Tony still has the recording (“in my trophy case, next to my silver bats”). And I cherish the memory.