The 108 Interview Series – Herb Lawrence
Here at the 108, it is our job….our duty to bring to you the great personalities of White Sox twitter, either via tweet / photo / video or blog post. Today’s interview is a man that needs no introduction, he’s a long-time producer at 670 The Score here in Chicago, the host of the “NEW” Locked On White Sox Podcast as well as the 773 Sports Podcast, a man who’s nickname THE REALNESS is all you really need to know, Herb Lawrence…
Favorite Game That You Were At- July 23, 2009. Mitch Rosen (Score Program Director) sent me to the game to on-site produce Mully and Hanley from the Rongey booth from 10am-12:30pm. After I got done with that my direct supervisor, Chris Collins called me into the Score Studios to do some other production. So technically I was at the Buehrle perfect game as I didn’t leave the stadium until after 1st pitch.
Favorite All Time Player That Doesn’t Have a Statue On the Concourse- Robin Ventura. He was excellent as a hitter and just as good, if not better, as a 3rd baseman.
Favorite Drink and Dinner at the Park- Pulled Pork sandwich and chips for $10.50 and I’m a child so I like the humongous root beer float they sell for $7.50
Favorite Place to Sit- Scout Seats. Not a better seat if you can afford it (I can’t). Otherwise it’s 531 in the upper deck as you can see the whole park and it won’t cost that much.
Favorite Uniform- 2005 vests. Not just because they had success in them. They looked sharp and I’m sure the players enjoyed them too.
Favorite Giveaway- Andruw Jones 400th HR Bobblehead. I remember the night I got it thinking that “damn, 400 home runs and the best centerfielder ever. This guy has to be a Hall of Famer”. Voters need to get their heads out of their asses.
Favorite Theme Night- Dog Day. There’s nothing better than being at a game and having hundreds of dogs to play around with. Dogs are the best
What irks you the most about White Sox fans? The Cubs obsession some of us have. I get that they get the lionshare of the publicity and adoration in the this town and nationally but I do wonder sometimes if some fans do hate the Cubs more than they love the Sox.
What is the worst part of being a Sox fan? The losing tradition. Just can’t stand being so terrible for so long. They used to mix in a couple winning seasons here and there but nowadays it’s just all brakes and no gas. Hopefully that’s changing
Worst part of the game day experience? The long walk after a loss (especially if you’re in the upper deck). Just a slough down a series of ramps with other disappointed fans, very depressing.
What really grinds your gears? The fact that the ballpark isn’t as great as it could have been. With any type of foresight or an eye for aesthetics, the backdrop for the stadium could have been the beautiful skyline of Chicago. I hope when it’s time to move from this current stadium they also think about putting a retractable roof on the thing so Chicago could host a Final Four, World Series and guarantee a scheduled game will be played.
Least Favorite White Sox player of all time- Jose Paniagua, of course. Adam Eaton might be a huge douche but that douche produced while on the SouthSide. Joe Bread and Water (h/t Brendan McCaffrey) absolutely was trash in his third of an inning and then flicked the ump off after he was removed. Glad that was his last major league appearance.
Most memorable experience as a White Sox fan- October 26th, 2005
Ballpark experience, how could it be better? Cheaper food prices. $7 for a hotdog is outrageous
Best Sox Park hack? Buy cheap upper deck ticket on a weekday game and sit in the lower deck as they usually close the upper deck because there’s not enough people sitting up there
What brings you back for every game? They’re my team. Even when I’m mad at them I still will support them and going to games is one of my favorite things to do.
Feelings on the wave? Hate it. If you find it fun then that’s good for you but it usually happens when the game still is competitive and late. Nobody is there for the fans to entertain them, please sit down.
Which Gate is your favorite to enter the park from? Gate 4
How Early Do You Get To Games? Hour beforehand to get my main drinking and eating done.
What Do You Bring To Games? Nothing. The less I have, the less I have to empty out of my pockets
How Many Games Do You Go To Each Year? 10-15 at Sox park and at least 1 on the road
Section 108 Questions
What is your favorite baseball word? Homer
What is your least favorite baseball word? Bunt
What get’s you excited about the White Sox? The future. They have so many pieces that get me hopeful that they’ll soon be great.
What makes you sad about the White Sox? Management. They’ve proven time and again that they’re incompetent. Their held back by a dominant owner but they don’t do themselves any favors with their moves. This offseason will tell a lot.
What sound or noise at the ballpark do you love? The crack of the bat when a hitter connects on the sweet spot
What sound or noise at the ballpark do you hate? Booing the home team. There’s no reason to do it besides blatant lack of effort. Do it for any other reason is counterproductive
What is your favorite Hawkism? Grab some bench
Who are some of your favorite “nicknames” you’ve given athletes over the years? One of my personal favorites is Jahvid Average (Best). My absolute favorite is not from me but I’ve co-oped it from Brendan McCaffrey. He called Juice Williams, Purple Drink Williams (from the famous Dave Chappelle comedy special)
Gimme the low down on your controversial “tipping” protocol? Tipping was originally instituted as a way to bribe the waiter for better service, evolved into a suggested payment for good service and now is a mandatory thing for any customer. It’s a clever game that restaurant management does to not pay their workers a fair wage. All the rest of the civilized world doesn’t tip but we’re so indoctrinated that we haven’t and won’t move from it even if it makes for a better dining experience for all involved.
You’ve worked at the Score for a long fuggin’ time, if you were going to cut it up at a Sox game or at a bar or restaurant, gimme 3 Score people (all-time) that would be there hanging with you? Brendan McCaffrey, Chris Tannehill and Eric Beverly. The first two guys and I travel to different ballparks each year and have a great time in each other’s company. The last guy is just so effortlessly funny just by being himself that he made the days working for Mike North very enjoyable.
Tell us something about Producing a Radio show that nobody really knows. Most producers work harder “off the clock” than they do when their show is on the air. Booking guests, editing audio, thinking of angles to present a topic to the audience take up most of our time when we’re not at work.
“Ask Herb” is a great segment. What’s the weirdest question you ever got and how did you answer it? Conversely, what question do you wish someone asked you, so you can go off on the topic on air? I think someone asked me if I was gay on the text line. Don’t know if it was serious or not but I answered it very weirdly. I pretty much said that I would love to be gay because that would mean that I would most likely be in shape. (Over generalization of the gay community by me at the time). Would like someone to ask me about how I believe every single college football or basketball coach should be given a full 4 years before any employment decision is made of them. You don’t know a coach is good or bad unless he or she is coaching the people they believe fit their program so you should extend or fire them until after that time.
Tell us a #108ing story from one of those baseball trips you do with Tanney and B-Mac. We were in New Jersey getting drunk and eating pizza and mussels when Eloy hit his 1st two homers in the show. We went to the next game on Saturday afternoon but we decided to tell anyone in the future that we were actually at that Friday game also.
Would you be interested in a web series with us called “Lawrence’s with Herb Lawrence” where we eat Lawrence’s and talk sports? Two of my favorite things of all time, eating and talking sports?! I’m always down for that
What at The Score could consume the most hot dogs in a single sitting? Probably Kevin Dziepak as he has a huge appetite but a medium frame.
Who at The Score talks the most bullshit that isn’t named Shane? Tony Gill but his “bullshit” is more conspiracy driven and commenting on things he has personally experienced.
Give us some dirt. Which on air personality that you have worked with is much sweeter off-air than people would imagine? Dan Bernstein. Off the air he is very kind and accommodating to me.
First Illini Basketball team you really enjoyed watching? 1990 team with Andy Kaufman, Deon Thomas, TJ Wheeler etc. The Kaufman game winning three still remains one of my favorite memories of all time.
All time favorite basketball player? All time favorite football player? Basketball it’s Kevin Turner. He worked himself from an undersized bench player to a stud scorer the last season that he was there. For football has to be Clayton Fejedelem. Not recruited out of high school so he went to NAIA St Xavier, then walked on at Illinois and then left as the leading tackler in the whole B1G at safety and on scholarship. Eventually got drafted by the Bengals (where he’s still playing at) in the seventh round. Two guys without much fanfare that persevered and became the best they could be when they left school.
All time Favorite basketball game that isn’t 2005 E8 AZ Comeback? Game vs Seton Hall that went into overtime and Corey Bradford extended his record 3 pointer streak that game also. I believe Ty Shine and Eddie Griffin (RIP) we’re playing for the ranked Pirates team
Illinois football has taken a huge dump since the Ron Zook days. What’s the problem? Continuity or lack of it. Need to stay with a program direction for an extended period or time to create a culture that people can believe in. Now I have asked for Lovie to be fired but that because I believe his conservative style isn’t putting his players in the best position to win but I believe he should be able to finish out his 4 year with the team and then they should assess if the program is in a better place than he inherited it. This new football facility will greatly help recruitment and retention of current players
Was it really Bruce Weber’s fault? Not at all. He was a pretty good coach that was unfairly judged and fired because of ridiculous reasons
F Marry Kill – Kruger / Self / Ron Turner- F*ck Ron Turner, Marry Bill Self and kill Lon Kruger
Feelings/Thoughts on Chief? Cultural appropriation is wrong especially when it’s done by the descendants of people that participated or passively sat by while natives were getting slaughtered. All Native American imagery should be eliminated as far a team sports. Once you know better, do better.
Any interesting former Illini player stories? Met Calvin Brock at a bar by my house and totally fanboyed. I think he was shocked that knew about him and what he did at the school.
Why don’t the Illini cheat? Seems like a fabulous way to get back to winning. Felt as if they were cheating under Ron Zook as there’s no way to get guys like Rejus Benn and Vontae Davis to play for them. Good stuff is coming now for football and basketball so maybe they’ve started on their way to cheating.
Hyped for 19-20 basketball? Is Underwood the answer? Very much excited as they’re going to the tourney this year. Brad Underwood is the guy to lead this program back to elite status because of his fun style of play and top notch recruiting.
How can Illinois retain it’s talent (basketball and football)? Keep them in state. That’s a tall task to do that as this state is so rich In talent has other big time schools developed deep connections while these programs struggled. It would be ideal but not necessary. Get the best talent available and they’ll win.
How frustrating is it to see a team like NIU be decent every year and the Illini just suck balls on the gridiron with so many resources? I don’t mind the growth of the Northern football program as it is good for other schools to see it is possible to compete with the big boys (Orange Bowl). Seems like Lovie might get to a bowl game this season and we as a fan base are starving for this
Do you have any favorite #108ing stories you’d like to share, ballpark or otherwise? Eat an edible in Denver before a Sox Rockies game, my first edible ever. Initially I didn’t feel it and thought it didn’t work. Then about the 2nd inning it hit both me and Jason Goff about the same time and we were done. I didn’t know the effects of indica but I learned right then as I feel sluggish and like I could sit up properly. Oddly enough, there were some guys from Chicago right in front of us and I’m sure they must have thought that we were weird. While I was in line for some Rocky Mountain oysters I saw or video guy Brian Gertsch there and started freaking out internally because he was a familiar face in an unfamiliar place. Thought I was dreaming but couldn’t wake up, that shit made me paranoid as fuck. (I know this is not necessarily #108ing)
What’s your greatest fear about the “rebuild”? That it will be a dud and they’ll still give Rick and Kenny to do another one.
What is there about this team that excites you the most? Yoan Moncada becoming as superstar. In only his second full year he’s already a top 20 player and has so much more room to grow, can’t wait.
Give us a #HotTake about the rebuild. They’re not going to spend any significant money this off-season as they will believe in their players progression to be enough to win
Favorite White Sox Twitter Account (Besides @fromthe108) and why? Patrick Nolan, because he seems very level headed while being realistic about the organization. I’m usually nodding my head in agreement as I read his tweets.
Person from White Sox Twitter that you’d most like to meet and why? White Sox Dave. I’ve actually met Dave before so this isn’t really answering the question but he’s a good guy. Enjoys himself and wants you to have a good time if you’re kicking with him too. Aaron Leming would be a guy that I have not met that would be fun to talk to.
Favorite Non-White Sox Twitter Account and why? Mike Mulloy, comedian from the Boston area that lives in LA now. Just the perfect amount of humor and serious tweets. Does not take himself too seriously either
What do you like best about @fromthe108 ? Seems like you guys have such a great time being fans and being around each other. Very inclusive to other fans too. Very good and unique content
Favorite White Sox related blog or podcast and why? Sox Machine. Josh and Jim do a great job on the podcast with their well round knowledge of both the major league team and the farm system.
What is your favorite alcoholic drink for #108ing? Be specific and feel free to go with more than one if you need to. Miller High Life. My girlfriend got me back into drinking the Champagne of Beers when we started going out and I haven’t stopped since. It’s a relatively inexpensive drink that I could drink all night without a hangover the next day. My favorite thing to do though is to do a shot of tequila before every MHL and see how nice I can get. Usually stop at 3
What about your favorite beer style? Stout
Favorite cut of Steak? Prepared? Ribeye medium rare. I used to get my steaks well done until I was 23. Then I went out for a dinner with Doug Buffone and Mike North and they schooled me on the proper way to eat it and I haven’t turned back.
Gimme an “Uncle Rico” moment from your prior sports playing past. Hit a homer at dusk that nobody saw go over the fence but the center fielder. Didn’t even think I hit it that hard so I ran hard out of the box. Was rounding 3rd before I knew that the ball wasn’t coming in. Was my only homer over a fence and I didn’t even get to pimp it. Now I’m sad.
Where would you take @ChiPartyAunt out on a date? Maxwell St for a Polish and then to Richard’s because I know she likes to smoke a square with her Old Style
Favorite performance enhancing drug? HGH. It works and I don’t ever remember guys getting busted. I’m sure a good majority of the athletes are doing it because there’s no way that PEDs just got cleaned up, they’re just smarter on how to beat test.
Who do you hate more Jim Belushi or John Cusack? Jim Belushi. At least Cusack has given us timeless classics like Say Anything, Stand By Me, Eight Men Out and High Fidelity. What has Belushi ever done for us, Mr Destiny?! According to me he’s finessed his lack of talent into a long career. Actually that’s impressive, good job Jim!
What Other Chicago Teams Do You Enjoy Bears, DePaul, Wolves and Loyola
Favorite Chicago Sports History Moment White Sox winning the World Series
Favorite All-Time Sox Broadcaster Ed Farmer/Darrin Jackson. I worked with them so long and got to know them as men that I can’t help but to love those guys. They gave us a ride back from Citi Field to our hotel. It was a treat to hear their dynamic off the air and Ed’s driving was a something. All gas
Any Stories About Running Into or Meeting White Sox Players? Met Frank Thomas when he returned to Chicago as a Blue Jay. I was trying to book guests for my show the next day so I went to the park as a media member. After the game I saw a bunch of media just leaving the visitors clubhouse after waiting for Frank for a considerable amount of time but I stayed and waited him out. Frank finally came out after about an hour and it was just me, a scared 20 something, and a future hall of famer that I loved. I asked him a couple of questions while he dressed and got out of there so I could stop sweating.
Other Chicago Athletes? Me and my people were hanging out at Kendall’s in Lincoln Park and my guy was mackin to this decent looking girl. He went to the bathroom and when he came back some other black dude was talking to her. Then we caught a glimpse of the guy as they walked out together, it was Zack Bowman of the Chicago Bears.
Favorite Band? Jamiroquai
What is your favorite song? The Lady in My Life by Michael Jackson
Favorite TV Show (or Netflix or HBO or whatever the fuck)? The Wire. It is a masterpiece. My friend that is a police officer now says that it is the most realistic portrayal of his profession. Superb acting and story telling
Married or Single? Looking for a GF? Single but I live with my girlfriend
Do you remember your first Sox game? Not really. I know I was around the age of 16 and it was post strike so the tickets were finally cheap enough for me to buy them myself but I think my mom purchased them to me and my friends.
What Player had the greatest impact on you? Robin. He was such a great overall player and I think people don’t remember that. He really didn’t get his just due until he got that “Grand Slam Single” for the Mets but he was a beast with the Sox before that. He like 5th or 6th all time in Grand Slams. All the guys in that category are like the greatest sluggers of our time and then there’s Robin. Outstanding
What was the happiest day watching the Sox? Besides the obvious, I would say April 4, 2005 as Mark Buehrle won 1-0. (I remember that day because that’s when the Illini played for the National Championship, great day)
What was the saddest day watching the Sox? When they got eliminated from the 2000 playoffs by the Mariners as I thought that team had a chance to do some damage in the playoffs. I believe that Series was the last time Mike Sirotka pitched in the majors too.
What do you do for work? If you could be or do anything else – what? Work as a radio producer for The Score so I just push buttons for a living. I love driving so when I did quit the Score a couple years ago and became an Uber/Lyft driver I was pretty happy. Being a driver would be a great career for me.
If you could live in any other time, when might that be? It would have to be in the future as the past was not a great time for people that look like me.
If you could have dinner with five White Sox Players, past and present, who would they be? Ozzie Guillen, Paul Konerko, Mark Buehrle, Robin and Frank Thomas
If you could change one thing in your past, what might that be? Nothing. I made all the choices that I have for a reason and I’m happy where those decisions have led me to
What are you most proud of? That I’ve been able to maintain this career for a decent amount of time. I feel so fulfilled when I go to work and I get to talk about something that I enjoy. Proud that I’ve fooled them and they let me stick around
How would you like to be remembered? Honest person that lived life as he wanted. No regrets
What’s the one thing about you few people know? I’m terrified of public speaking. (Great career choice, huh?)
What do you dislike most about yourself? I’m heavier than I would ideally like to be but also fine with my body so it evens out.
What do you dislike most in others? Dishonesty. Lying is just so childish so when I see adults do it I’m instantly turned off
What were your best/worst subjects in school? Gym, I gave it my all and still got the same grade as the person that didn’t do anything. Math was my least favorite as got bad grades even though I was trying harder than the person that just had an innate ability to do math
What do you like doing in your spare time? Going to ballparks, chilling with my girlfriend, sleeping
Who is your celebrity crush? Used to be Raven Symone circa That’s So Raven. Now it’s Ashley Graham
What is your favorite movie? Inglorious Basterds
What is your favorite baseball movie? Eight Men Out
What is your biggest/weirdest fear? Scared of eternal life. The thought of living forever is scary. I mean it never ends which would suck. Having an end makes me appreciate this life much more
What would be your one super power? Ability to never stay cold. When every one else is freezing I’m usually fine. Takes a lot for me to actually be cold.
What would you change your name to? Was born Herbert Lee Bass III so technically I’ve already changed my name when I adopted my stepfather’s last name but if I would have know that I could change my name to Trey I would have done it a long time ago.
What pet would you love to have? A dog. Dogs are the best so having one around me daily would improve my life so much. Unconditional love
What’s your one biggest pet peeve? Not saying thanks when someone is doing something for you. Whether it’s holding a door for them, letting them merge while in traffic or the like, it’s not that hard to just show that person that you acknowledge their generosity with a simple thanks
What’s your one annoying habit? Biting my nails. Been doing it since I was a child and haven’t stopped
What would be a good theme song for your life? What A Fool Believes by The Doobie Brothers
What ballpark would you like to visit? San Francisco which we will go to this coming season when the Sox play there