Mark Grant (baseball)
October 24, 1963 |
|April 27, 1984, for the San Francisco Giants|
|Last MLB appearance|
|July 26, 1993, for the Colorado Rockies|
|Earned run average||4.31|
|Career highlights and awards|
Grant was a first-round pick by the San Francisco Giants in the 1981 Major League Baseball draft. Grant started his major league career with the Giants from 1984 through 1987, when he was traded to the San Diego Padres. Grant played for the Padres through 1990 where he was again dealt to the Atlanta Braves for Derek Lilliquist. In the 1992 off-season, he signed with the Seattle Mariners to a one-year deal. In 1993, he signed to the Houston Astros. The same season on May 20, he was sent to the expansion team Colorado Rockies for Braulio Castillo. He was released from the club just two months later, and signed with the California Angels on August 20. In 1994, he took a break from baseball to host a talk radio show for KFMB-AM along with broadcasting Padres games for the station. Grant returned to baseball in 1995 when he pitched for the Chicago Cubs AAA affiliate Iowa. In 1996 he briefly played for CPBL's Uni-President Lions and officially retired from baseball after leaving the Lions.
In 1997, Grant began working in the Padres' TV broadcast booth for Channel 4 San Diego, teaming with a variety of partners including Mel Proctor and Matt Vasgersian. In 2012, he moved to the new regional television network Fox Sports San Diego, where he continues to provide color commentary with famed play-by-play announcer Dick Enberg. Grant's style of color commentary along with his humorous on-air antics have made "Mud" (a nickname given early in his playing career by Giants coach Danny Ozark in reference to Mudcat Grant) a favorite with Padres fans.
Grant popularized the shillelagh as a rally call in San Diego during the 2005 season, specifically during the month of May, which saw the Padres go a franchise-best 22-6 during that month. Plastic shillelaghs can be purchased at the Padres Store at Petco Park. Grant has also coined such phrases as "Shillelagh power", "F.O.P" (short for "full of Padres", used when the bases are loaded by the Padres), and "that's some kinda nice". When a player hits a home run, particularly in a dramatic situation, Grant will often say "Put another notch in the shillelagh for (player name)".
Broadcasting for a team so close to the Mexico border, Mark Grant also uses his fair share of Spanish words and phrases throughout telecasts to describe things: calling baseball gloves guantes (gwan-tess), comments on players' pelo-styles (hair-styles), and referring to a change-up as a cambio (kawm-bee-O).
During play-by-play Mark Grant along with his broadcast partner Matt Vasgersian frequently try to name off other current or past athletes or famous people that a certain ballplayer may remind them of.
Mark is fond of expressing his hope that the Padres will hang a "crooked number" on the board in the next inning.
When a player shown on television is obviously chewing tobacco, Mark often refers to them as "cancer mouth."
Mark used to refer to exceptionally tall players as "The Third Twin" but stopped doing so after the September 11 terrorist attacks out of respect for the victims and their families.
When a player tries to check his swing but can't, Mark will use his famous line "if he hits it, its a double", especially if a "no-swing" is called by an umpire. This is likely in reference to Rondell White's famous check-swing triple for the Padres in the 2003 season.
Mark uses several different terms to describe a curveball, including "twelve-to-sixer", "yakker", and "uncle charlie." There's also the Linda Ronstadt fastball, "blew by you".
When a player is a bit too anxious or excited, he is "froggy." When a catchable ball bounces out of the glove, there's usually "a frog with a tennis racket in there" or if a pitcher narrowly avoids getting hit with a batted ball he yells "hockey suit" referring to a hockey goalie.
Once when a fire broke out during a game outside of Petco Park centerfield, Mark looked at the white smoke and said that "it looks like they have not chosen a new Pope."
When fellow commentator Vasgersian uses the phrase "How 'bout a ..." either to describe an exciting play that just happened in favor of the Padres or his hopes for a future play, Grant is known to quote Judge Smails from Caddyshack, "How 'bout a Fresca?"
Mark is also up to speed on the latest defensive alignment. "Are you shifting me?"
Finally, Mark does an impersonation of legendary Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray, especially when visiting Wrigley Field. In addition to spelling players' surnames backward, his Harry Caray act frequently includes the phrase "Hey, check out the sombrero on that guy!"
Grant currently resides in Alpine, CA, with his wife Mary, two sons, and a daughter. In 2007, Mark Grant was honored by the Kiwanis Club of Alpine (of which he is a member) for his contributions to the community. He is also a frequent contributor to sports talk shows on XX Sports Radio in San Diego, as well as the Dave, Shelly, and Chainsaw show on 100.7 JACK FM. Grant has publicly stated his appreciation for this page, and also shops at Costco La Mesa, frequently.