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Friday, May 17, 2013
Salem Red Sox ace Henry Owens picked a good time to have one of the longest innings of his professional career.
Without his struggles in the first inning at Myrtle Beach last Saturday, the Roanoke Valley might have missed out on some radio gold.
Sox broadcaster Evan Lepler got to spend the bottom half of that frame in the booth with one of his childhood heroes, Dennis Haskins - known to Lepler's generation as Mr. Belding from "Saved by the Bell."
This wasn't your typical celebrity cameo. Lepler, who's seen every episode of the show multiple times, peppered Haskins with questions about his career and the series.
Lepler: "The Malibu Sands season - "
Haskins (laughing): "I wasn't there!"
Lepler: "I know. Did you watch those episodes?"
Haskins: "No! No!"
Lepler: "Leon Carosi took over!"
Haskins: "I'm on the show, and all of a sudden they come to me and say, 'Listen, we're not going to do shows from the school for a while. We're going to see how it goes.'
"Ugh. But the good news is they came back to the school. So I had my redemption."
Haskins sprinkled in his own commentary about the action on the field while answering Lepler's questions about the whereabouts of former cast members.
Ultimately, Haskins picked up on Lepler's devotion and decided to ask a few questions of his own to test the play-by-play man's knowledge.
"Who ran The Max?" Haskins said, referring to the kids' dining hangout in the show.
"Max!" Lepler said without hesitation. "Ed Alonzo."
"Aww, I can't trick you," Haskins said.
After the 13-minute inning ended, Haskins stuck around until the start of the second. That's when Haskins said something on-air Lepler won't forget:
"Best trivia guy I've ever met, right here in the booth, man. I'm just telling you: Mr. Belding endorses Evan."
You can listen to the entire inning at salemsox.mlblogs.com.
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