DAYTON, OHIO-Dayton Dragons games on Thursday, July 4, and Friday, July 5 will be televised from Fifth Third Field on WHIO Digital Channel 7.2 (Time Warner Basic Cable Channel 23 and Digital Channel 372). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. both nights as the Dragons host the Bowling Green Hot Rods.
Sponsors for Dragons 2013 television broadcasts include John Morrell Food Group, Drake Heating and Air, Greater Ohio Virtual School, DP&L, IUE-CWA, Smoothie King, Cohen Recycling, Skyline Chili, h.h. gregg, and Iworks Laser and Vision Center.
Former Reds first baseman and former Dragons manager Todd Benzinger will be the guest commentator on the Thursday telecast. Former Reds pitcher and former Dragons pitching coach Doug Bair will serve as the commentator on Friday.
Todd Benzinger was the Dragons manager for the 2009 and 2010 seasons and a key member of the Cincinnati Reds 1990 World Series champions. He recorded the final out of the '90 World Series when he caught a foul pop off the bat of Oakland's Carney Lansford in the ninth inning of game four. He spent nine years as a player in the major leagues with the Reds, Red Sox, Royals, Dodgers, and Giants, playing in 924 major league games. In 1990, he appeared in nine of the Reds' 10 post-season games including all four World Series games after playing in 118 regular season games for Cincinnati and batting .253. Benzinger also had two hits in the first inning for the Reds on August 3, 1989 as the Reds put together the biggest inning in team history, scoring 13 runs. He concluded his major league playing career in 1995. Benzinger is a Cincinnati-area native and was an All-American at New Richmond High School. Following his playing days, Benzinger enjoyed a highly-successful career coaching girls' high school basketball in the Cincinnati area from 1999-2009.
Doug Bair spent 15 years in the Major Leagues and served as the Dragons pitching coach in 2007-'08. Bair pitched for the Reds for four seasons from 1978-'81. He finished third in the National League in saves in 1978 with 27 and then recorded 16 saves to finish eighth in the league in '79. The 1979 Reds won the N.L. West Division title with a club that included Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan, George Foster, Ken Griffey, Dave Concepcion, and Tom Seaver among others. Bair appeared in 65 games out of the Reds bullpen in 1979, going 11-7. Bair continued his big league career through the 1990 season, appearing in 584 Major League games to rank 214th in baseball history. He pitched in the World Series for two champions, the 1982 St. Louis Cardinals and the 1984 Detroit Tigers. Bair was the pitching coach on Dragons playoff teams in 2007 and 2008. Seven pitchers off those two Dragons clubs have reached the Major Leagues. Bair resides in Cincinnati and continues to be involved in coaching at the amateur level.
The Dragons will televise 25 games from Fifth Third Field this season. The telecasts are produced by the Dragons' in-house production crew. Others who have appeared or are scheduled for appearances as guest commentators this season are:
Former Reds player, coach, and manager Tommy Helms (member of the Reds Hall-of-Fame)
Ohio State University football/basketball broadcaster Paul Keels
Former Reds and Houston Astros star second baseman Bill Doran
Former Reds infielder Chris Sexton
Voice of Great American Ball Park Joe Zerhusen (Reds public address announcer)
WHIO TV Sports Director Mike Hartsock
WHIO Radio's Larry Hansgen
Reds Assistant Director of Media Relations Jamie Ramsey, author of the blog Better off Red
Former Reds Assistant Director of Player Development Grant Griesser
The Dragons have made some changes to their television broadcast schedule, adding games on July 28 and August 17. Here is the remaining schedule.