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Actor Crews calls Dodgers game from booth

LOS ANGELES -- The calendar flips and August is under way. It's a new beginning, as we obsessively track the earth's orbit around the sun, and a good time to check in on other new beginnings.

In Dodgers blue, Shane Victorino will take his first home hacks at Chavez Ravine. In the broadcast booth for the first time to call those at-bats is Terry Crews, who's brought his family to the ballpark. For good measure, it's his son Isaiah's first baseball game.

Before he was hilariously portraying Chris Rock's fictitious dad, playing out his family life in front of a reality-show camera or just flexing his pecs for laughs, Crews was hitting people in the mouth as hard as he could in the NFL. Drafted by the Los Angeles Rams in 1991, Crews played with several teams over a six-year career.

After he was finished with the NFL, it was time for another new beginning in Hollywood. He wanted to write, be behind the scenes, work security and do whatever he could in the entertainment business.

For this art major from Western Michigan University, it was an audition for the television show "Battle Dome" that finally got him in front of the camera. Crews went to WMU on an art scholarship, not a football one.

An admitted workaholic, Crews has built a workaholic's resume. Some highlights include "Everybody Hates Chris," "Are We There Yet?," "Idiocracy," "The Expendables 2," Aaron Sorkin's "The Newsroom," and "Stars Earn Stripes."

"Come on, I'm an old athlete," Crews said. "You get a chance to do something. ... I learned to take everything."

Now Crews is in a Dodgers booth calling a baseball game, and acknowledges that it's an honor, a humbling experience and a dream come true.

Crews is calling the game as part of a new original content development, Expressed Written Consent. This particular facet of the concept brings non-traditional broadcasters into the booth to have a go at the pastime that's evolved alongside the pastime: calling the game. will be unveiling more of these original broadcasts over the next several weeks. Among the new crop of participants are Eric Stonestreet, Jay Mohr, Bill and Willie Geist, Kevin Pollak and Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi.

But today is a day for Crews to live out a childhood dream.

It's a cliché to write about an athlete of Crews' stature that his heart is in proportion, but there's a reason for clichés. This one may not even do him justice, because he brings such energy, enthusiasm and gratitude into the room that he'd have to be eight feet tall and 500 pounds. Terry Crews is big. His heart's bigger.

"The Expendables 2" opens nationwide Friday, Aug. 17.

Los Angeles Dodgers