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11/05/2008 4:54 PM ET
MLB Network signs Vasgersian
Baseball's new cable channel finds their 'voice'
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Matt Vasgersian is happy to report that he's hitting leadoff for MLB Network.

The veteran baseball broadcaster was announced as the first on-air personality for MLB Network, which will launch Jan. 1, 2009 in approximately 50 million homes as the largest network debut in cable history.

For Vasgersian, the lead play-by-play announcer for the San Diego Padres since 2002 and a regular contributor to FOX Sports as a play-by-play announcer with FOX Baseball Saturday and FOX NFL Sunday, it's the ideal job.

"As a huge baseball fan, I'm excited about how MLB Network will change the way we enjoy baseball on TV," Vasgersian said. "These live shows will be a dream come true for baseball fans and I can't wait to get started."

Vasgersian, 41, will join MLB Network as a studio host and anchor for MLB Tonight, the live, nightly studio show that will be the signature program of the new network. He will also handle duties for Hot Stove, a live, nightly off-season studio show.

Prior to San Diego, Vasgersian worked in the Milwaukee Brewers broadcast booth for five seasons after spending six years in the Minor Leagues.

Vasgersian has also been a part of NBC's broadcast team for the last three Olympic cycles, and has lent his voice to the "MLB: The Show" series of video games since 2005.

MLB Tonight will air live from 6 p.m. ET until the final MLB game of the night, Monday to Saturday. It will be based out of MLB Network's headquarters in Secaucus, N.J.

The program will feature live look-ins of games in progress, updates, highlights, reporting and analysis. Hot Stove will air during the offseason at 7 p.m. ET Monday through Friday and feature news, reports, and analysis of the moves clubs are making and planning in preparation for the upcoming season.

"Matt's experience behind the mic, his ability to carry a broadcast and his enthusiasm for baseball make him ideally suited to serve as the 'voice of MLB Network,'" said Tony Petitti, president and chief executive officer of MLB Network.

"MLB Tonight and Hot Stove will be an important source of MLB coverage for baseball fans, and Matt's presence will help ensure that the programs have an authoritative and experienced voice from day one."

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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