Former Reds TV announcer Thom Brennaman is building his sports announcement career as he approaches the one-year anniversary of his dismissal as the Reds’ lead TV voice.
Brennaman started a podcast called Dialed In With Thom Brennaman in January. He shot 24 episodes in 29 weeks with former Reds greats, fellow broadcasters and various sports personalities.
He’ll be returning to play-by-play this fall, playing games for Chatterbox Sports, a subscription-based local steaming and podcast service that covers Greater Cincinnati high school sports.
“I grew up here in the greater Cincinnati area. I know what high school football or high school basketball and high school sports mean to this area,” said Brennaman, 57, an Anderson High School graduate in Chatterbox’s video announcement posted on Twitter Tuesday has been published.
“I did that on Channel 5 when my career started, so this is coming full circle and going back to high school sport and I’m excited,” said Brennaman.
Brennaman was pulled from the air by the Reds during the fifth inning of a game on Aug. 19, 2020 and immediately suspended for using a homophobic slur heard when the Fox Sports television show came off a commercial break. The next day, he was deposed by Fox Sports, where he had announced NFL games since 1994, and by Kroger advertising. He resigned from the Reds in September after 13 seasons.
Trace Fowler, who founded Chatterbox Sports two years ago, said in the Twitter video that he “did a lot of research, what kind of person he (Brennaman) is … is that he’s a great person who made a mistake which he deeply regrets. And we’re excited to give him another chance to put a headset back on. “
Hiring Brennaman doesn’t mean “downplaying what he said at Fox Sports Ohio last August,” said Fowler.
After thanking Fowler for the opportunity, Brennaman said on the video, “I think it’s safe to say that we all make multiple mistakes. I know I do every day of the week and several times every day of the week. I’m just so grateful and excited. “
Brennaman began his play-by-play career in 1988 with a few Reds TV games for WLWT-TV, where he worked as a weekend sports presenter. In 1989 he became the keynote speaker for WLWT-TV and played TV games with Johnny Bench. So good was it that Chicago’s 1990 WGN drew him to the Cubs games on TV and radio. He later joined startup Arizona Diamondbacks before returning to Cincinnati in 2007 to work with his father, Hall of Fame announcer Marty Brennaman.
The guests on Dialed In With Thom Brennaman for the Los Angeles-based Beleav Podcast Network reflect his many friends in the sports and broadcasting sectors. His first guest on January 6 was former OSU football coach Urban Meyer, whom Thom knew from his Fox Sports College programs.
He’s spoken to Reds greats, Bench, Pete Rose, Sean Casey, and Eric Davis; former athletes who became broadcasters with Jeff Brantley, Chris Welsh, Boomer Esiason, Chris Spielman, Duane Kuiper, Tim McCarver, and Steve Lyons; Fox Sports announcers Troy Aikman, Brian Billick and Joe Buck; UCLA and former UC basketball coach Mick Cronin; Announcer Bob Costas; former Reds manager Dusty Baker; and daughter Ella Brennaman.
Los Angeles-based Beleav offers more than 300 sports podcasts.