Two freshmen hit home run with new baseball-themed podcast

‘The Ben and Caden Show’ has received recognition from big names across the baseball world

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Ben Glick, Caden Greco, and Declan Smith prepare for upcoming podcast over Zoom

 

It was a pretty cool moment just to see that [the podcast] had gone that far. It felt really surreal but also really good”

— Ben Glick

On March 9, the Cubs took a 9-8 victory over the A’s during a spring training game. As usual, the fans at Sloan stadium cheered while they watched their favorite team win. As usual, Jon Sciambi, the Cubs play-by-play announcer, called the game with his baritone voice. 

To anybody else, it was just another baseball game. 

But during this otherwise typical game, Sciambi took a moment to mention a small time student-run podcast that he had taken part in recently.

For freshmen Ben Glick and Caden Greco, that game and that shoutout was the moment they knew The Ben and Caden Show had the potential to grow from small time to big time.

Glick and Greco were both stunned by the amount of positive feedback they’ve received from their childhood heros, especially during a live baseball game.

It was a pretty cool moment just to see that [the podcast] had gone that far. It felt really surreal but also really good,” said Glick.

Greco and Glick entered school this fall with a years-long friendship and a strong passion for all things baseball. The pair quickly found a perfect outlet for their shared obsession when they joined a media production class together. 

One of their first projects in the class was a podcast project, involving interviews, editing, and voice recording. After experiencing that kind of media, Greco and Glick quickly became captivated by the world of podcasting. It soon became clear that they wanted to create something of their own. 

 “We were having fun in the class… we were FaceTiming one night, and we were thinking maybe we could create our own podcast,” said Greco. “That night we recorded a preview episode, we designed the artwork, and created an Instagram and Twitter…we did it all in one night, and we both just thought about it randomly.”

With both of them having a natural inclination towards baseball, the podcast was naturally focused on the sport. In the span of just a few hours, The Ben and Caden Show was born

Their enthusiasm for the show was a surprise to their media production teacher, John O’Connor. 

“When they came up to me about [the idea of a podcast]  I think they may have been half joking at first, but I encouraged it. I thought it was a great idea.”

Even Glick admits it was originally more of a fun concept rather than a fully fledged idea. “The podcast was thought of by both of us, originally as a joke, but then we realized the very real possibility of what we could do…  It kind of just started one night out of nowhere.”

The first official episode was published on Nov. 30, featuring Bob Nightingale, a national columnist for USA today. 

“We both see [Nightingale] on Twitter a lot. He’s actually kind of the reason we started the podcast… we kind of wanted to interview him,” said Greco.  

As time went on, the podcast grew, with 8 episodes available on Spotify, each around 20-30 minutes long. Many of the episodes feature an interview with a big name in the baseball industry.  

Guest stars include Sciambi, Len Kasper, and Bryan Hoch.  

Glick and Greco managed to reach out to them through either a media directory or through Twitter direct messaging. 

Part of what makes the podcast works is the mock rivalry between the hosts. 

“Caden is a big Cubs fan and Ben is a Brewers fan, so they have a bit of a mock rivalry between them, and some of their guests have picked up on it too,” said O’Connor.

Sciambi even brought it up himself when he was invited on the show during its 6th episode, Talking with ‘Boog Sciambi’, new Cubs play-by-play announcer

“Ben, this is pressure right here…you have to efficiently explain what [Caden] means by ‘you’re half a Cubs fan’,” Sciambi teased.

Several guests tweeted how much they enjoyed being on the show. 

“These two Illinois high school students have it going on! All the best, guys,” wrote Scott Miller, a national Major League Baseball columnist, who made an appearance in their seventh episode, Discussing an Unconventional Spring Training with Scott Miller.

“Listen to the Ben and Caden [podcast]! These young guys are good,” wrote Sciambi. 

After a while of reaching out to potential guests, their names became topics of conversation in a small group of people in the baseball community. 

Instead of reaching out through their usual methods, the freshmen didn’t even need to reach out at all for their 8th episode starring Len Kaspar.

“[Kasper] actually texted me first, and I Opened my phone and I was like ‘oh my god I got a text from Len Kasper an hour ago and I missed it!’” said Greco.

The show has opened new opportunities for the duo. 

“Some of these guests I would never have been able to get before, but since they are familiar with me and they know the people I’ve talked to, they’d agree,” said Greco. 

Ben and Caden say they now  understand what it’s really like to work in sports, both positive and negative aspects.

“I knew these guys liked their jobs but I never realized how passionate they were about it,” said Greco. 

“It really gives you a perspective on their careers and the constant hard work that goes into their profession,” said Glick.  “The scrutiny that they face if they mess up, the people they deal with on social media. People don’t understand that this is how these extremely talented journalists make a living.”

As The Ben and Caden Show grows, so does the ambitions of the two podcasters. After experiencing a glimpse of online radio, both boys are interested in pursuing something similar as a career. 

“If I could choose my dream job it would without a doubt be something in the world of sports. It’s really incredible how deep and amazing the field can be,” said Glick.