“We got together on Friday night, had a good time, had a couple of beers, and Joe sat in his room watching baseball on YouTube, recording what he calls the game,” said Rick Krajewski, a college friend who now works at the booth with Davis. “We were like, ‘Hey Joe, let’s do something fun.’ And it was, “No, sorry guys, I have to do this.”
Before his senior year, Davis took a summer job at the microphone for the independent Schaumburg Flyers in Illinois. After releasing in 2010, he served for three seasons as the voice of Montgomery Biscuits, the Class AA affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays. After the games, he listened to his broadcasts and transcribed some parts; studying his words made it more concise.
By then, Davis had a network of colleagues who could give him advice – if only they could think of something to say. Joe Block, now a broadcaster for the Pittsburgh Pirates, was working with minors and running a website for job postings when he first heard Davis’ work. The guy was a prospect not to be missed.
“It was funny, just so polished and so good,” Block said. “The resume said he was 19 and we were blown away. We got in touch and I said, ‘I don’t have anything for you, please remember me,’ something like that.”
Davis moved to ESPN in 2012 and Fox two years later, adding a role to the Dodgers in 2015 and building a relationship with former pitcher Eagle Hersheezer, his regular telecast partner. Along the way, Davis met Buck, who spoke of their profession: “If you get hit by a bus on your way to the stadium, they won’t hold a moment of silence for you.” In other words, take your job seriously, but don’t act like it.