Tuesday, August 16, 2016

A Sit Down With ThatSportsGamer

T.J. Lauerman aka ThatSportsGamer is a video game and sports fanatic who likes to spend his time playing video games on all different consoles. He loves sports and is a huge fan of everything baseball. I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to interview him and ask him a few questions... His Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch are all "ThatSportsGamer" so you should really go check him out! I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to interview him and ask him a few questions...

Q: What was your first experience with Baseball? What made you like the sport so much?

  A: I can't remember exactly what my first experience with baseball was, but I do remember some of my earliest memories of baseball was watching Mets games at the kitchen table on our little 5” TV we had in there. The thing that really attracted me to baseball was the battle between the pitcher and batter, and how much every pitch mattered.

Q: What is your favorite MLB team? How did you become a fan of that team?

A: As someone who has grown up, and spent all my life living in Northern New Jersey, I’m obviously a fan of the Atlanta Braves. Surprised? Yeah, me too. I must have started seeing them in the 1991 World Series, but I honestly don’t remember it. On TV growing up I had the Yankees and Mets on local channels, and the Braves were on TBS. Maybe it was my love of the pitching side of the game that attracted me to the Braves, and their amazing rotation that came together starting in the early 90s.

Q: How many MLB stadiums have you been to? Do you have a favorite/least favorite?

A: I’ve been to a solid handful of stadiums, Citi Field (Mets), Yankee Stadium (Yankees), Citizens Bank Park (Phillies), Nationals Park (Nationals), Oriole Park at Camden Yards (Orioles), Tropicana Field (Rays), Dodger Stadium (Dodgers), Chase Field (Diamondbacks), Fenway Park (Red Sox). I don’t want to leave out Shea Stadium (Mets) and the previous Yankee Stadium. When I see the list written out like that, I realize I’ve been pretty lucky to go to nearly a third or the current stadiums. I don’t really think I could pick a favorite/least favorite, they all have their own little things that stick out in my mind, for good and for bad.

Q: How did you come up with your name as "That Sports Gamer"?

A: We’re actually about a month away from the 6 year anniversary from the creation of ThatSportsGamer. The name came from a mixture of places. New Jersey native, filmmaker, Kevin Smith’s Twitter handle, @ThatKevinSmith, is where the “That” came from, and also that I don’t think of myself as “the” sports gamer, but I like to think I’m a little more than just “a” sports gamer. The “SportsGamer” part game from Todd Zuniga’s podcast on 1Up.com back in the day, The Sports Game Guy's Sports Anomaly. That podcast was were I realized that if you want to write/talk about video games, you can do it in a super-niche that you love, like sports games.

Q: If you could pick any player from past or present to sit and watch a baseball game with who would it be and why?

A: Wow, that’s a tough one. There have been so many great players throughout history. Since it’s so tough, I’m going to cheat, and go with a pitcher and a hitter, because I think a conversation between Greg Maddux and Tony Gwynn would so amazing that I probably wouldn’t say much. Both were so amazing at doing exactly what they wanted to do on the field, that just hearing them talk strategy, pitch-by-pitch, would give you an amazing educational experience.

Q: If you were commissioner for a day what would be your first action in office?

A: Hmm… eliminate the DH, add the DH to the NL, give Montreal a team, reinstate Pete Rose? I think my first move would be to eliminate the All-Star Game giving a league home field advantage. That’s not what that game should be about. I’d rather it just be a celebration of the great talent that is in the league. While that would be the first thing I would do, it definitely wouldn’t be the last.

Q: What is your opinion on all of the moves that Brian Cashman has recently made?

A: While I would love loved to see No Runs DMC stick around a little longer, I completely understand moving Miller and Chapman. I also like moving Beltran, he doesn’t have a future with the Yankees, and now this opens up right field for Judge to come up. The only problem they have now with Sanchez coming up, is they have a handful of guys that are going to need to DH. With Sanchez being the future, I think they should have pushed harder to trade McCann. But, overall, I think Cashman did a great job getting a handful of prospects to, hopefully, for Yankee fans, make the team perennial picks to go deep into the playoffs.

Q: When did you first start broadcasting on Twitch?

A: I first started streaming on Twitch in late 2011. I’m a supporter of Extra Life, which is a gaming fundraiser that benefits Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Yearly, gamers across North America, and now the world, play games for 24 hours straight to raise money for their local children’s hospital. My first stream was my Extra Life stream in 2011, and it had to be awful. Thankfully it’s not archived anywhere. The stream was done with a laptop, using an external webcam on a tripod pointed at my TV. I like to think my stream quality has gotten a lot better since then. Here is the archive of the 2015 stream (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL8Ipap6l0PPbBNx84WAhggwQgM-M7YGan).
This year I’ll be participating in my 7th Extra Life marathon, and if you’d like to support that, you can go to ThatSportsGamer.com/ExtraLife for more information.

Follow him on Twitter- @ThatSportsGamer

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)