This Sunday, reporter Will Reeve will make his E:60 debut with his story “The Perfect Moment,” an in-depth profile of Cincinnati Reds pitcher Michael Lorenzen, at 9 a.m. ET on ESPN.
Reeve will join host Jeremy Schaap in studio to further discuss the Lorenzen story and remember his own father, Christopher Reeve.
Reeve was able to connect to his subject on a far deeper level than most reporters, and that connection is evident throughout the piece.
“Though we’ve had different lives, we’ve lived a lot of the same things and that can’t be discounted. I think that him knowing that I was someone his age, who had experienced similar loss, was important to him and to me,” Reeve said. “Anytime that you get to explore a life experience you’ve had with someone else as your subject, it’s always going to be meaningful and I think I related to Mike just by saying, ‘Hey man, we’ve been through a lot of the same stuff. Let’s talk about it.’”
Although Lorenzen’s comfort level with Reeve played a role in his ability to open up and share his story, Reeve gives credit to those who helped guide him in the interview process.
“I have to give ultimate credit to producer Mike Farrell who was with me and John Sawatsky who is kind of ‘the godfather of the interview,’” he said. “Just taking cues from them in terms of letting things breathe with asking open, neutral, and lean questions.”
For those who aren’t familiar with Sawatsky’s interview training, he has spent many years studying interviews and teaches his students how to get the most out of an interview based on the types of questions they ask. But at the end of the day it’s no secret that the best interviewers are good listeners and that’s what Reeve put his focus on.
“I was there to hear his story and to let him explore his emotions,” Reeve said. “It was my job to be professional and to also be there for him. I was just a willing listener and a contemporary who knows what it feels like.”
Reeve has interviewed countless athletes but Lorenzen is one that has left a lasting impression. When discussing what made Lorenzen such an interesting subject Reeve said: “his introspection and his self-assessment. He’s worked through a lot of this.
“I think that his willingness to go anywhere within his own emotional self was unique and rare and specific to this story,” Reeve said. “If I was interviewing him about his fast ball it’d be different. His willing vulnerability really made an impact on me and made an impact on the overall story.”