Longtime Atlanta Braves ballpark announcer dies

Casey Motter behind the mic at Truist Park in 2021. (Atlanta Braves)

Casey Motter, the voice of the Atlanta Braves at Truist Park has died at the age of 54.

"Welcome to Truist Park, home of the Braves, and the best MLB experience in baseball," Motter's booming voice could be heard saying on any given night during the season.

Motter, a Smyrna native and lifelong Braves fan, took to the mic at Turner Field in 2007. Braves Assistant General Manager Frank Wren heard him announcing a youth football game in Peachtree City and extended an invitation to try out for the role.

Before being discovered by the Braves, Motter was an exterminator. In a 2019 Forbes article, he said he was known as the "Bug Man" and would spend his day on his belly crawling through tight spaces, dealing with pests. By night, he would haul his own PA equipment to a youth game, so he could announce.

Motter told Forbes he was extremely nervous when he first auditioned for the Braves in March 2007. He talked about how, as he was about to speak, a photographer for The New York Times came into view. It was then he realized how high-profile of a job it was. He was able to get over those initial jitters and the rest is baseball history.

The Campbell High School graduate said he would get nervous during on-camera interviews for years following, but always felt comfortable in the announcer's booth, high above the field. He said it was because no one could really see him.

Motter speaking on the Talkin’ with Tony podcast in 2019, shared some behind-the-scene aspects of being the Brave announcer, such as not being able to use the restroom during the game, having to be there early, and consulting other MLB announcers on player pronunciations.

In 2017, he would travel with the team to their new home, now Truist Park. That same year, he would become the first voice of BallparkDJ, an app designed to delivery walk-up music and announcements for youth sports across the country.

The Braves shared a feature video on Motter at the start of the 2021 season following the fans return to the ballparks.

"When you hear the fans respond after you’ve read something or introduced their favorite player, chill run through you," he said in the video. "It’s really one of the coolest ‘living the dream’ jobs out there."

He said the highlight of his career was announcing the 2021 World Series.

"It was a dream come true," he said.

On the BallparkDJ Facebook page, they would describe Motter as "gentle and kind" and a "loving family man."

"...he laughed often and worked hard...he was the best friend you could possibly ask for.  We will miss him dearly," the post read in part.

They said he died peacefully in his sleep.

They are asking for prayers for his wife, Debbie, and the rest of his family. The Braves echoed that sentiment on its social media, writing in part:

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife and family, and we share our deepest sympathy with Braves fans everywhere."

During Thursday's game in Philedelphia, Phillies ballpark announcer Dan Baker led those in attendance at Citizens Bank Park in a tribute to Motter. 

No word yet on any services or tributes for Motter.