Wednesday • July 17
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Ann and Del
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This week’s guests are basketball great Ann Meyers Drysdale and former big-league catcher and manager Del Crandall. Ann is an executive with the WNBA Phoenix Mercury and the NBA Phoenix Suns. She also once tried out with the Indiana Pacers — she was that good. And Crandall is no slouch either. He was with the Braves when they were in Milwaukee and had teammates such as Henry Aaron, Eddie Mathews, Warren Spahn and Lew Burdette, to name a few.
Episode Segments:
 
Sports and Torts: Ann Meyers Drysdale

Ann is currenty in London as part of NBC’s Olympic Games coverage. But before she left he creative forces at “Sports & Torts” (yes, the show has creative forces) taped an interview with her when she recently was in Chicago for a Mercury game against the Chicago Sky. She was a gracious guest and has an interesting story to tell. Here recent memoir is called You Let Some GIRL Beat You?
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Sports and Torts: Del Crandall

Crandall was considered one of the National League's top catchers during the 1950s and early 60s, leading the league in assists a record-tying six times and in fielding percentage four times. He won four of the first five Gold Glove Awards given to an NL catcher, and tied another record by catching three no-hitters. We look back on his career as a player,manager and broadcaster.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Ann Meyers Drysdale
Ann is a retired American basketball player and sportscaster. She was a standout player in high school, college, the Olympic Games, international tournaments, and the professional levels. Meyers Drysdale was the first player to be part of the U.S. National team while still in high school. She was the first woman at UCLA to be signed to a four-year athletic scholarship for college; at UCLA She was also the only woman to sign a contract with a National Basketball Association team, the Indiana Pacers (1979). Meyers Drysdale currently resides in Huntington Beach, California, and Phoenix, AZ, where she serves as the president and general manager for the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and vice president of the NBA's Phoenix Suns. For nearly 30 years, she served as a network television sports analyst for ESPN, CBS, and NBC. In 2006, Meyers Drysdale was awarded the Ronald Reagan Media Award from the United States Sports Academy. Ann Meyers Drysdale has been the women's basketball analyst at the Summer Olympics for ABC’s 1984 L.A. Olympics, NBC's 2000 Sydney Olympics, 2004 Athens Olympics and 2008 Beijing Olympics. She had been offered a job to broadcast the Chicago Bulls games in 1983, but she turned it down due to family considerations. She served as an analyst on ESPN's coverage of the WNBA and previously worked for NBC Sports full-time as its lead WNBA analyst from 1997 to 2002. Meyers Drysdale also worked "Hoop-It-Up" telecasts in 1994 and 1995. Since 1983, she has served as an ESPN and PRIMETICKET analyst for various events including both men's and women's NCAA basketball games. She also worked as a color analyst for the Indiana Pacers making her the first woman to do game analysis for the team. Meyers Drysdale led the U.S. to a silver medal at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal as women's basketball made its Olympic debut, and returned eight years later as an announcer for ABC Sports at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. She has since covered a wide variety of sports for major networks in the U.S, including the 1986, 1990 and 1994 Goodwill Games, men's and women's college basketball, NCAA softball and volleyball and the 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympics for NBC.

Ann's Website

 
Del Crandall
Considered one of the National League's top catchers during the 1950s and early 1960s, he led the league in assists a record-tying six times and in fielding percentage four times, winning four of the first five Gold Glove Awards given to an NL catcher, and tied another record by catching three no-hitters. He retired with the fourth most home runs by an NL catcher, and his career .404 slugging average also placed him among the league's top ten receivers. He ended his career among the major league career leaders in putouts (4th, 7352), total chances (8th, 8200) and fielding percentage (5th, .989) behind the plate, and ranked fourth in NL history in games caught. Crandall was only 19 when he first played in a major league game, with the 1949 Boston Braves. He appeared in 146 games for Boston in 1949-50 before entering military service during the Korean War. When his two-year hitch was over in March 1953, the Braves departed Boston for Milwaukee, where – benefiting from a powerful offense featuring Hank Aaron, Eddie Mathews and Joe Adcock – they soon became both successful on the field and phenomenally popular off it. Crandall seized the regular catcher's job in 1953 and held it for eight years, handling star Braves pitchers such as lefthander Warren Spahn and right-handers the late Lew Burdette and Bob. The Braves won NL pennants in 1957 and 1958, also finishing in second place five times between 1953 and 1960, and captured the 1957 World Series championship – the franchise's first title since 1914. Crandall was a superb defensive player with a strong arm; he was selected as an All-Star eight times: 1953-1956, 1958-1960, 1962. A powerful right-handed hitter, he topped the 20 home run mark three times. In 1,573 games over 16 seasons, he finished with a batting average of .254 with 179 home runs. Crandall eventually turned to managing, and piloted two American League clubs, the Milwaukee Brewers (1972-75) and the Seattle Mariners (1983-84). In each case he was hired to try to right a losing team in mid-season, but he never enjoyed a winning campaign with either team and finished with a managing record of 364-469 (.437). In between those AL stints, he was a highly successful manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers' top farm club, the Albuquerque Dukes of the AAA Pacific Coast League, and he remained in the Dodger organization as a special catching instructor well into his 60s. He also worked as a broadcaster with the Chicago White Sox in 1985 and with the Brewers from 1992-94.

Del's Career Stats