It's a well-known fact that New York City is divided into Met and Yankee fans and never the twain shall meet. But Jacqueline Twohie, who was born and raised in Queens cheering on the residents of Shea Stadium, recently celebrated her seventh season (that's more than 525 games) as an associate director for the Yankee broadcasts in the Bronx. So what gives?
"I started on the engineering side as a videotape and robotic camera operator at NBC where I met John Filippelli, who was then an AD," she recalls. Thirty years later when Filippelli was president of production for the fledgling Yankees Entertainment and Sports Network (YES), he hired Twohie as an associate director. Now she's a fixture at Yankee broadcasts and was there for the end of an era in September. "Who would've thought a tomboy from Queens would ever get emotional the day Yankee Stadium closed?"
Associate directors in live television are only as good as their stopwatches. Twohie has three—one analog and two digital—which she uses to count back to the broadcast from commercials, pitching changes ("exactly 1:30," she says), studio segments and the like. Twohie usually spends the entire game inside a broadcast truck. She jokes that the key to her job is "hydration pacing."
"I arrive four hours before each game to check the log, time out commercials, relay promos to the stage manager, and basically just keep the producer up-to-date," Twohie says. "Watching at home, I always thought baseball was slow, but in the truck it's definitely faster paced. A good day in the Bronx is no rain, a game under three hours, and the Yankees win."
Twohie says she's been crazy for sports ever since her stickball- playing days in the streets of Queens. In 1992, she won an Emmy on the technical side for NBC's coverage of the Barcelona Olympics, and then another as an associate director for Yankee games.
But her best on-the-job memory was on a bus. "This past June we had to work a Friday double-header, with the day game at Yankee Stadium and the night game at Shea," she says. "The first game in the Bronx went almost four hours, so we piled onto the media bus as part of a police caravan, where they closed the highways and the Triborough Bridge. I started my stopwatch when we left Yankee Stadium: It took 19 minutes and 50 seconds to get to Queens. We pulled up to Shea with the lights flashing, sirens blaring, and 10 minutes to go before we went on air."