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Twenty years behind Timber Rattlers mic for Mehring

There’s the old saying, ‘find a job you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.’ Timber Rattlers play-by-play announcer Chris Mehring personifies that.
Published: May. 15, 2022 at 9:35 PM CDT
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Baseball is knock for it’s records, and it’s streaks. Like Cal Ripken’s 2,632 straight games played, or Joe DiMaggio’s 56 straight games with a hit. There’s another streak in the Fox Valley, but not on the field. Instead it’s in the radio booth.

There’s the old saying, ‘find a job you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.’ Timber Rattlers play-by-play announcer Chris Mehring personifies that.

“Being able to come in and do a job that I love every day. It never feels like a job. It feels like when I was eight years old, this is the job that I wanted. Grew up listening to Brewers, Merle Harmon, Bob Uecker. I listened to the Cubs a lot because they were on during the day, and that was Vince Lloyd and Lou Boudreau. I would pull out the transistor radio during the night and listen to the White Sox, could hear Ernie Harwell from Detroit. Occasionally could pick up Jack Buck from St. Louis. Listening to those guys, really made me feel like I could, maybe not approach that, but I would want to do that for a living,” said Chris Mehring.

Mehring originally got his shot to call baseball back in his days in Duluth, Minn. Then while he was calling games for the Green Bay Gamblers back in Wisconsin, a friend in the Timber Rattlers ticket office invited him to a Timber Rattlers game, and his life was never quite the same after that.

“I kind of missed baseball. It was my first summer off in a while, and he said ‘hey why don’t you come down to a game, and I’ll introduce you to the radio guy.’ Tim McCord was the radio guy for the first five years of the Timber Rattlers. Came down to a couple games that summer, got to know Tim, and Tim just say ‘hey, I’m going to be leaving at the end of the year. Why don’t you put your hat in the ring?’ Larry hired me for the 2000 season on a seasonal basis. Kind of grew into a responsibility for me to come in and do this for the 2002 season, and I haven’t missed a game since,” said Mehring.

In 2002 Mehring took over the full time job with the Timber Rattlers, and has not looked back. Or missed a game for that matter. Something reminded of inside is office at Fox Cities Stadium.

“It’s up on my board here. The last game I missed was in 2002, and how many total games I have. I didn’t think about it until someone Tweeted at me, and then the team surprised me with this video my first day back in the office after the road trip. I just come into work. It’s not even work. It’s just what I’ve always wanted to do,” said Mehring.

Over those twenty years Mehring has seen plenty of fabulous finishes, and prospects that went on to become big league ball players. Whether that’s a pitcher known as the Raptor, Brent Sutor, or an eventual Cy Young winner in Corbin Burnes.

“The first one was obviously the 2012 championship team. Brent Suter was on that team. . There was so many great guys on that team, Matt Erickson was managing, to be able to call that and experience that was a lot of fun. The three run walk off strikeout from 2018 against the Bees. I’ve never covered anything like that before. I don’t think I ever will. I still see that one pop up occasionally. I’m just glad I didn’t screw that one up,” said Mehring.

“Seeing the players come through and make it to the major leagues. This year having guys like Sal Frelick, Joe Gray Jr., and Antwan Kelly and seeing where they could maybe be next to be Devin Williams, Corbin Burnes.”

Just like the players, though, many of the best memories aren’t on the field. It’s living the life that is minor league baseball.

“Being able to ride the bus with them. I Still remember Brent Suter’s first day on the bus when we were going out on the road, when he first joined the team after he was drafted. That’s some great stuff. Also you see the work that goes into being a professional baseball player, because these guys don’t just show up at game time. They’re working in the cage. They’re working in the bullpen. That’s a privilege for me to be able to see the behind the scenes stuff, and watch them develop and get better,” said Mehring.

There’s still more games, and another milestone on the horizon for Mehring. With three thousand games just around the corner.

“Now, twenty years not missing a day. If I went back and tell that kid, ‘hey, just keep doing what you’re doing. You’d be pretty happy,” said Mehring.

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