Dick Enberg wins the Ford C. Frick Award


SAN DIEGO — Dick Enberg, the TV face and voice of the San Diego Padres, has been named the winner of the Ford C. Frick Award. The Fick Award is presented annually for excellence in broadcasting by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Moments ago he spoke with the media here in San Diego and talked about his life and career.

Enberg, who spent over 25 years with the good people at NBC Sports, broadcasting all manner of sports, is a baseball man first and in his heart, he said a few minutes ago. He said he was teethed on a baseball bat — literally — and wanted nothing more than to be the right fielder for the Detroit Tigers when he was a boy. When he was 18 the Tigers signed Al Kaline, however, and Enberg joked that he decided that he maybe needed to do something else in life.

That something else was broadcasting, which he started doing while at Central Michigan University. From there it was on to Indiana and eventually on to teach and coach baseball atSan Fernando Valley State College, which is now known as Cal-State Northridge. In the 1960s he began broadcasting in Los Angeles, eventually becoming the play-by-play man for the California Angels.

After his career blossomed and went national with NBC from the 1970s through the 90s, he went on to CBS and then ESPN. In 2009 he came back to baseball on a full time basis, calling games for the San Diego Padres, which he continues to do, even though he’ll turn 80 next month.

Enberg is a warm TV presence, and has never seemed like anything but a nice and decent man who truly enjoys what he does. His comments today, reflecting on his love of baseball and the many kind people he’s worked with over the years certainly supports that. At times he welled up with tears and didn’t apologize a bit for it, nor should he. He seems truly touched by this honor and truly at home in the broadcast booth. Padres fans are lucky to be able to invite him into their home each night.

Congratulations, Dick Enberg. The 2015 Frick Award winner.

New bill to build Athletics stadium on Las Vegas Strip caps Nevada’s cost at $380 million

D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

CARSON CITY, Nev. — A bill introduced in the Nevada Legislature would give the Oakland Athletics up to $380 million for a potential 30,000 seat, $1.5 billion retractable roof stadium on the Las Vegas Strip.

The bulk of the public funding would come from $180 million in transferable tax credits from the state and $120 million in county bonds, which can vary based on interest rate returns. Clark County also would contribute $25 million in credit toward infrastructure costs.

The A’s have been looking for a home to replace Oakland Coliseum, where the team has played since arriving from Kansas City for the 1968 season. The team had sought to build a stadium in Fremont, San Jose and finally the Oakland waterfront, all ideas that never materialized.

The plan in the Nevada Legislature won’t directly raise taxes. It can move forward with a simply majority vote in the Senate and Assembly. Lawmakers have a little more than a week to consider the proposal before they adjourn June 5, though it could be voted on if a special session is called.

The Athletics have agreed to use land on the southern end of the Las Vegas Strip, where the Tropicana Las Vegas casino resort sits. Oakland Mayor Sheng Thao has said he is disappointed the team didn’t negotiate with Oakland as a “true partner.”

Las Vegas would be the fourth home for a franchise that started as the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901-54. It would become the smallest TV market in Major League Baseball and the smallest market to be home to three major professional sports franchises.

The team and Las Vegas are hoping to draw from the nearly 40 million tourists who visit the city annually to help fill the stadium. The 30,000-seat capacity would make it the smallest MLB stadium.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said a vote on the Oakland Athletics’ prospective move to Las Vegas could take place when owners meet June 13-15 in New York.

The plan faces an uncertain path in the Nevada Legislature. Democratic leaders said financing bills, including for the A’s, may not go through if Republican Gov. Joe Lombardo vetoes the five budget bills, which he has threatened to do as many of his priorities have stalled or faded in the Democratic-controlled Legislature.

Under the bill, the Clark County Board of Commissioners would create a homelessness prevention and assistance fund along the stadium’s area in coordination with MLB and the Nevada Resort Association. There, they would manage funds for services, including emergency rental and utility assistance, job training, rehabilitation and counseling services for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

The lease agreement with the Las Vegas Stadium Authority would be up for renewal after 30 years.

Nevada’s legislative leadership is reviewing the proposal, Democratic state Assembly Speaker Steve Yeager said in a statement.

“No commitment will be made until we have both evaluated the official proposal and received input from interested parties, including impacted community members,” Yeager said.