Capital Region sportstalk station ESPN Radio 104.5 The Team (WTMM-FM) found itself duped by someone claiming to be former New York Yankees outfielder Shane Spencer.
On Monday’s “Midday with Mike” show, host Mike Lindsley conducted an interview with who he thought was Spencer. The person claimed that he used steroids during his time with the Yankees (1998-2003), and saw others doing it.
The station later learned that it wasn’t Spencer.
On his Wednesday show, which was at Saratoga Race Course, Lindsley explained that he had reached out to the Major League Baseball Players Association for interviews with former Yankees to celebrate closer Mariano Rivera’s career.
“I got an email from Shane Spencer, and he agreed to come on,” Lindsley said.
They exchanged emails over the weekend to set up a time for the interview, and Lindsley suggested 1:30 p.m. Monday.
“It was our impression at 104.5 The Team ESPN Radio that an interview was scheduled, and it was,” Lindsley said. “We came to the conclusion that around 1:32 that Shane Spencer was going to be unable to do this interview and a rescheduling of this interview was going to happen. At 2 o’clock, we received a hoax call from someone who claimed he was Shane Spencer.
“It was a complete dupe on us at 104.5 The Team ESPN Radio. It was a complete hoax and dupe on Shane Spencer, and it’s completely unacceptable. It’s bad for baseball, it’s bad for us, it’s bad in general and it does nobody any favors.”
Spencer, a hitting coach for the Atlantic League’s Somerset Patriots, learned of the situation from a friend and immediately said he didn’t conduct the interview. On Tuesday, he called WTMM and was interviewed by Lindsley. The interview first aired while the Yankees-Los Angeles Angles broadcast on WTMM was in a rain delay, and it was replayed shortly after Lindsley went on the air Wednesday.
“It’s unfortunate, you know, it’s embarrassing,” Spencer said in the interview, a transcript of which, along with audio, was posted on the WTMM website. “It really is embarrassing. Not only am I very upset that my name is out there because I am here working in New Jersey. I do a lot of stuff at Yankee Stadium, I work with kids, I’m a good role model and to see how this might affect me is very disappointing and I’m going to make sure that I clear my name out.”
There is no word of any disciplinary action against Lindsley.