Los Angeles Dodgers: In the enchanting world of minor league baseball, where dreams are born and talents are nurtured, there exists a hidden gem known as the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes.
Situated at the bottom rung of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ four-tier minor league farm system, the Quakes may not bask in the spotlight of the majors, but they possess a fervor and charm all their own.
At the heart of this baseball universe for the past 14 years stands Mike Lindskog, the Quakes’ public relations manager and the undoubted “Voice of the Quakes.”
In this article, we take you on a captivating journey through a day in the life of Mike Lindskog, where baseball and passion collide.
A Passion for the Game
Mike Lindskog, at the age of 49, embodies the spirit of a true baseball aficionado. While Major League Baseball broadcasts boast a small army of professionals, Lindskog is a one-man show. He serves as the voice that echoes through iHeart Radio and the TuneIn app during the Quakes’ games.
His dedication to the sport goes beyond the call of duty, as he estimates that his season’s earnings match what big-league broadcasters make in just a few games. For Lindskog, it’s not about the paycheck; it’s about his unwavering love for the game.
“I just love the game,” Lindskog affirms. “I live and die by adrenaline, and so getting up for these games is so very easy.”
From Quakes to Dodgers
The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes have played a pivotal role in the journeys of some notable players. Dodgers stars Will Smith and Gavin Lux once donned the Quakes’ uniforms, and even pitching legend Clayton Kershaw made appearances at LoanMart Field during his rehab tours. While the Quakes may be a stepping stone in these players’ careers, they leave an indelible mark on the team’s history.
Lindskog’s Multifaceted Role
In the world of minor league baseball, versatility is key, and Mike Lindskog embodies this principle to the fullest. With the assistance of one dedicated colleague, Lindskog takes on various responsibilities, making each game day a well-oiled machine.
7 a.m.: Crushing Data and Breakfast
As dawn breaks, Lindskog is already hard at work. While preparing his son’s breakfast, he dives into the world of statistics, assembling the daily stat packs for the coaches.
This entails analyzing the opponent’s strengths and weaknesses, recapping the previous game’s highlights, spotlighting standout players, and detailing the starting pitchers for the day. The information is dispatched to team officials before they even wake up.
8 a.m.: Preparing for Playoff Intensity
On this particular day, the Quakes are gearing up for the playoffs—a special week indeed. Lindskog acknowledges the challenge of maintaining high energy through a grueling 132-game season, but the playoffs rekindle the fire. They face off against the Inland Empire 66ers, creating a natural rivalry as part of the Angels organization.
10 a.m.: Crafting the Game Day Program
Lindskog’s responsibilities extend to curating the team’s game day program—a printed edition that demands meticulous attention. While he has assistance in the writing department, Lindskog takes charge of compiling, editing, and physically sending the program to the printer. Fans attending the game are treated to insightful features about the players, adding an extra layer of excitement to their ballpark experience.
1 p.m.: Meeting with Coaches and Scouts
Lindskog maintains open communication with both coaches, addressing their statistical queries and discussing roster moves or strategies. On this day, the presence of a professional scout, Jeff Ishii from the St. Louis Cardinals, adds another dimension to his responsibilities—a testament to the Quakes’ dedication to nurturing talent.
4 p.m.: The Art of Scorekeeping
Filling out the scorecard is a task that requires precision and fluency. Lindskog’s shorthand notation allows him to quickly reference past plays, a skill vital for capturing the essence of the game when familiar batters return to the plate.
5 p.m.: Game Mode Activation
As evening approaches, Lindskog shifts into game mode. At 6:15, when the broadcast goes live, he becomes a whirlwind of energy, speaking rapidly and thinking on his feet. This playoff game is an elimination round, and the stakes are high. Lindskog exudes confidence in the Quakes, assuring everyone, “See you tomorrow,” with unwavering optimism.
5:50 p.m.: Ensuring Fan Satisfaction
Moments before going on air, Lindskog’s dedication to fans shines through. A season ticket holder approaches the broadcast booth, expressing concern about missing team emails. Lindskog goes the extra mile, reassuring the fans and promising to rectify the situation, exemplifying the Quakes’ commitment to their loyal supporters.
6:10 p.m.: Sound Check and High Energy
In his tidy broadcast booth, Lindskog prepares for the broadcast. His voice resonates with enthusiasm, leaving no doubt about his high-octane approach to the game. The Keurig coffee machine sits untouched—a testament to Lindskog’s natural energy and passion.
The Thrilling Conclusion
The climax of Lindskog’s day arrives in the ninth inning. The Quakes are holding onto a narrow one-run lead, and the tension in LoanMart Field is palpable. Lindskog, red-necked and with veins bulging, rides the wave of drama. A wild pitch, a tying run on third, and two more walks loaded the bases. It all comes down to the final pitch.
With a full count and the game on the line, Lindskog’s voice resonates through the stadium. The pitch—a fastball, a strike! The Quakes hang on, securing the win by the skin of their teeth. The series is tied at one apiece, and Game 3 awaits. Lindskog’s exuberant call echoes through the night, inviting fans to join in the excitement on Friday.
Mike Lindskog’s day in the world of minor league baseball is a testament to dedication, passion, and the thrill of the game. As the Voice of the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, he brings the energy, the drama, and the heart of baseball to fans.
Behind the scenes, he juggles a multitude of roles, ensuring that each game day is a memorable experience for both players and spectators. The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes may be at the bottom rung, but with Lindskog at the helm, they soar to great heights.