From Keene State to the Red Sox
Yes, that’s the Red Sox 2018 World Series trophy that Samantha Pineau is holding. Samantha, a 2017 grad with double majors in communication and multimedia journalism and a minor in broadcast journalism, is video production assistant for the Boston Red Sox.
It’s definitely a dream job, says the longtime sports fan. Even more amazing is that the team landed the pennant and then the World Series during her first season with the team. She thought about that while helping to set up the wiring for the pre-game activities like the singing of the national anthem before the two series games played at Fenway Park.
“Being on the field at the beginning of the season in April and then in October, with all the media around you, it’s such a buzz,” she says. “While the whole World Series and everything leading up to it was a really a magical thing, I think being a part of it in that way, being behind the scenes but still in it, was really really interesting.”
Not to mention really cool. Samantha’s job is different every day, she says. On what she calls “office days,” she might be out shooting video at an event – say, a luncheon – that will be edited into a recap to be shown on social media or on the big screen during games; or, she might be editing someone else’s footage into a video clip.
On game days, she’s doing those “behind-the-scenes” things that make the game lively and informative for spectators. Sometimes she’s running the home run tracker, creating a graphic that pops up on your TV screen when a player who’s already hit a run comes up to bat again. Other days she’s running the New Balance board – a screen to the right of the main Center field screen that displays play scores and ads.
That particular task comes with an enviable view: she’s stationed in a booth behind and above home plate. “Best seats in the house,” she says. “I’m watching the game live but also looking at my computer to make sure that I’m pressing the right buttons and launching the right graphics.”
Samantha doesn’t travel with the team, so she wasn’t there in person to watch the Sox wrap up the series at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. When she wasn’t at Fenway Park helping to record those games, she was watching them with coworkers. The reaction when the team clinched the series? “So much jumping, so much screaming,” she says. “Typically, in some sports like basketball, the best team is always going to win. But that’s not always how it is in baseball. So many things can happen in a second. One play can change a game or a series.”
Samantha got her start in the sports field as a broadcaster and producer for the Keene State Athletics Department, broadcasting field hockey, lacrosse, and soccer games. Abe Osheyack, Keene State’s assistant athletic director for Sports Information, was an important mentor – as were three faculty members, Chitra Akkoor of the Communication Department and Julio DelSesto and Chad Nye of the Journalism Department. “I wouldn’t be here without them or the whole Keene State community,” she says.
After graduation, she interned with the Boston Celtics and the Boston Bruins at TD Garden. That led to the Red Sox position.
“When I interned at TD Garden, I got a taste of what it’s like to work behind the scenes and make magic happen for everybody else,” she says. “I really like that feeling. It reminded me of being a kid and watching all the games. I’m able now to create that feeling for other people. It’s a really cool job and it’s an important job – and if it all goes as planned, no one knows that we’re doing it at all. It’s definitely a dream job.”