Twins alter their broadcast teams for 2011

Twins alter their broadcast teams for 2011

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins' radio broadcasts will have a slightly different sound for the 2011 season.

The club announced a few changes to its broadcast team on Tuesday. Longtime play-by-play voice John Gordon will return for his 25th season with the club, and he'll be joined by partner Dan Gladden to make up the club's primary broadcast tandem. But Gordon will have a reduced workload in 2011, as he's scheduled to broadcast 89 regular-season games and 15 Spring Training contests.

Current studio host Kris Atteberry will handle play-by-play duties or analyst duties for approximately 45 games, while the team has also brought back former Twins broadcasters Ted Robinson and Bob Kurtz to each work approximately 25 games.

Jack Morris will also return to the Twins' radio coverage in 2011 in his current role as a part-time analyst.

Gordon, 70, was part of the New York Yankees' broadcast crew from 1982-86 before joining the Twins in '87. He had done play-by-play for 150 games in each of the past two seasons, but Gordon's lighter workload of games for the 2011 season was his decision, said club president Dave St. Peter.

"John and I have had many conversations as it relates to the 2011 season," said St. Peter. "He just felt this was the best option as it relates to where he's at and the time he wants to spend outside the broadcast booth, specifically with his family. We were happy to work with him on a schedule that allows him some of those accommodations."

Although his season schedule will be lighter than in years past, Gordon will serve as the team's play-by-play voice should the Twins make it to the postseason again in 2011.

Gladden will enter his 12th year in the Twins' radio booth and his ninth serving as a full-time analyst. He is scheduled to work approximately 140 games during the 2011 season.

Atteberry, 38, is beginning his fifth season as a member of the Treasure Island Baseball Network broadcast team in 2011, and in addition to his increased game duties, he'll continue to serve as the studio host for pregame and postgame programming. Prior to joining the Twins, Atteberry spent five summers (2002-06) calling games on radio and television for the St. Paul Saints. He has also served as the voice of Montana State football and basketball during that time.

"It's a great thing for Kris because he's going to triple the number of games that he covers and he's someone who has worked every pre and post game during his time here," said Twins senior director of broadcasting Andy Price said. "He's never missed a game. He's like our Cal Ripken and so he's earned a shot to be able to step into a big league booth."

While Atteberry will handle a large portion of the play-by-play duties with Gordon reducing his schedule, the Twins also saw this as an opportunity to feature some of the other well-known voices from seasons gone by in Robinson and Kurtz.

Robinson spent six seasons in the Twins' television broadcast booth (1984, '88-92), and he is currently NBC's lead announcer for the French Open and Wimbledon tennis tournaments. He has also been the play-by-play voice of the San Francisco 49ers since 2009, and he has worked as an announcer for the San Francisco Giants, New York Mets and Oakland Athletics.

Kurtz was part of the Twins' television broadcast team from 1979-85 and has been the radio play-by-play voice of the Minnesota Wild since the team's inaugural season in 2000.

"It's great that we had them within our reach and were able to bring them back into the fold, working out a deal relatively quickly," Price said. "We're reaching into our broadcast history. When it comes to the Twins, we're very much about our history and so any chance that we would have to bring back some very historic voices, but also some voices that are completely recognizable to our fans, that's great."

Kelly Thesier is a reporter for Read her blog, Kelly's Corner and follow her on Twitter at kellythesier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.