Former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine and NESN baseball analyst Peter Gammons will conclude the 30th season of the Salem State University Speaker Series on Thursday night with a conversation and Q & A session at the university's O'Keefe Sports Center complex.
The speaker series got off to a rocky start this spring, with journalist, author and national T.V. personality Anderson Cooper cancelling his appearance twice. Cooper never made it to Salem, and the spring Speaker Series was scrapped.
But despite being let go by the hometown ball club shortly after a season full of contention in the clubhouse and disappointment on the field, Valentine is expected to be at the university for the 8 p.m. event.
Bobby V., a visible and well-known baseball personality who never shies away from public appearances and a chance to voice...well, just about anything...took over the Red Sox bench last offseason after 10 years out of the Majors. He previously managed the Texas Rangers (1985 - 1992) and the New York Mets (1996 - 2002), with a stint managing in Japan between, and then again from 2004 - 2009. He was part of ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball broadcast team for the 2011 season.
Photography and video are allowed for the first five minutes of the presentation.
Gammons, a three-time recipient of the National Sportswriter of the Year Award, and widely regarded as one of the all-time great baseball journalists, is currently a Red Sox analyst for NESN, and also contributes to the MLB Network. He spent two decades in broadcast analysis with ESPN after beginning his career at the Boston Globe in 1969, where together with Will McDonough, Bob Ryan, and Leigh Montville, he helped to form one of the most highly regarded sports journalism cores a daily publication has ever seen.
Previous sports personalities to address the Series audience include Bill Russell, Mike Lynch, Cal Ripkin Jr., Doug Flutie, Mia Hamm, Bill Belichick, and David Halberstam.
Other national figures to appear include Newt Gingrich, Jane Goodall, Jay Leno, Colin Powell, Gloria Steinem, and presidents Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush and Gerald Ford.
For more information regarding tickets and the Series, visit www.salemstate.edu/series.
Ryan Mooney can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @mooney_ryan.