Jeremiah Paprocki made his debut as the Cubs' public address announcer at Wrigley Field on Monday night.
Paprocki, 21, is the first Black PA announcer in team history.
“Who’s ever heard of a 21-year-old PA announcer?” Paprocki told the Chicago Sun-Times' Russell Dorsey. “That truly means the world that the Chicago Cubs, my hometown team, the team that I love, is taking a chance on me.
“To be able to sit in that chair behind the microphone at Wrigley Field of all places, it’s truly an honor. I’m looking forward to that opportunity.”
Paprocki is a Chicago native, previously graduating from the CICS Northtown Academy in the city’s North Side. He is now in his senior year at the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he called games for the UIC Flames. Paprocki's love of the Cubs dates back to the 1990s, when his mom, Barbara, served as a parking attendant at Wrigley Field.
Chicago's new PA announcer noted the rare opportunity ahead of him as a 21-year-old. Paprocki added such roles are rare for Black broadcasters, who often don't have the same opportunities available as their white counterparts.
“Being the first African American PA in Cubs history, it definitely means a lot,” Paprocki said. “I hope that it inspires other African-American boys and girls out there that are interested in broadcasting that opportunities are available to you if you keep going and to never stop and to never let anything discourage you from pursuing opportunities.”
The Cubs enter Monday night sitting fourth in the NL Central at 19–20. Perhaps the addition of Paprocki can help bring Chicago its second straight division title in 2021.
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