Mike Blowers and Shannon Drayer continue to bring baseball action to fans over the airwaves.
Mariners baseball is back! And that means two Huskies-turned-broadcasters are bringing the action to Mariner fans everywhere. Former Husky shortstop Mike Blowers and former Husky Marching Band trumpet player Shannon Drayer are in the press box and on the field to cover the team as excitement builds for (dare we say) another trip to the playoffs. We didn’t just jinx them, did we?
Here’s the lowdown on the two familiar faces to Husky & Mariner fans:
Mariners television analyst
The Germany-born Blowers went to Bethel High School in Spanaway and then played baseball for two years at Tacoma Community College in the early 1980s. A talented shortstop with a good bat, he caught the eye of the Mariners way back then. They selected Blowers in the 1984 Major League Draft after his freshman year at TCC, but he decided not to sign. Instead, he went to the UW. In his one season wearing the purple and gold, Blowers was a big hit, winning the Pac-10 Triple Crown, leading the league in batting average, home runs and RBI. That led him to be drafted by the Montreal Expos in the 1986 draft. He signed.
During his 11-year major-league career, he enjoyed three stints with the Mariners: 1992 to 1995, 1997 and 1999 (he also played for the Yankees, Dodgers and A’s). His biggest claim to fame came in 1995, when he played third base for the Mariners when they shocked the world by making it to the American League Championship Series. The M’s, who were loaded with talent, owed a lot to Blowers, who had a career year, hitting 23 home runs with 96 runs batted in. He tied a Mariner team record with 33 RBI in August, when the Mariners rallied after trailing the Los Angeles Angels by 12½ games on Aug. 21.
Blowers, who retired in 1999, joined the Mariners broadcast booth in 2007 and has been widely recognized for his expert take on the game.
Mariners Insider for Seattle Sports 710 AM
Host of Mariners’ pregame and postgame shows on radio and writes for MyNorthwest.com
Drayer played trumpet in the Husky Marching Band and earned a degree in drama from the UW. After graduating, she moved to New York for a year to try an acting career before she decided she wanted to come back to the West Coast. She has been a lifelong baseball lover who grew up in the Midwest watching games with her dad. She always wanted to get as close to the game as she could, but realizing that playing and managing were not options, she decided on the next best thing: covering baseball. In 1997, while working as a barista in Seattle, she was encouraged to send in a tape to a local sports radio contest. She not only made it as a finalist, but she was so impressive that she was given some gigs covering Husky men’s basketball, Mariners, Seahawks and Sonics. Those experiences led her to be hired as a Mariners radio reporter, where she was the first woman to travel with the M’s on the team plane.
She says her gender has not been an issue in the clubhouse. She continues to serve as a role model for women everywhere who also entertain ideas of going into sports journalism.