"Joining the White Sox television team of Ken Harrelson and Steve Stone - with the chance to work with Steve on home games - is truly a dream come true for a kid who grew up in the south suburbs watching Sox games during the 1990s," Benetti said. "This is beyond exciting for me."
Benetti is a 2005 graduate of Syracuse University, where he earned bachelor's degrees in broadcast journalism, economics and psychology. In 2011, he earned his juris doctor from Wake Forest University's School of Law. Prior to signing on with ESPN in 2011, Benetti called the play-by-play for the Class AAA Syracuse Chiefs, and he has worked for Fox Sports 1, Westwood One Radio and Time Warner Cable SportsChannel.
"Jason is one of the top up-and-coming voices in sports television," said Brooks Boyer, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the White Sox. "He is a home-grown talent who will mix a love for the game with a deep knowledge of the White Sox and an informative and entertaining style. We believe Sox fans will immediately connect with his humor, intellect and personality."
"Jason is truly a rising star in the ranks of baseball play-by-play broadcasters," said Phil Bedella, vice president and general manager of Comcast SportsNet Chicago. "His astute detail of the game, along with his deep passion for the White Sox, will make him a perfect addition to the White Sox booth with Steve Stone and Ken 'Hawk' Harrelson."
"We are proud to welcome Jason to our broadcast team," said Greg Easterly, general manager of WGN-TV. "He's from Chicago, grew up a White Sox fan, paid his dues calling games and is now returning home…we are glad to count him as one of Chicago's Very Own."
Benetti, a former adjunct professor at Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School for Communications, was born with cerebral palsy (CP) and has become a prominent voice within the CP community. He is part of the Cerebral Palsy Foundation's 'Just Say Hi' campaign that launched in 2015, and has presented to ESPN's ENABLED, the network's resource group that celebrates and addresses employee diversity, including people with disabilities. Throughout his career, he has dedicated himself to the idea that a person is not defined by his or her disability.
"The way I look or walk is such a small part of who I am as a person," Benetti said. "I like to joke that fortunately, I chose a profession where all I needed was my voice, not my legs. I have always felt that if I can help one other person, or if I can help change one person's attitude about how they perceive others, then I have made a positive difference."
As a graduate of Homewood-Flossmoor High School, Benetti grew up as a White Sox fan. He plans on giving back to the Chicago community, especially helping those with disabilities.
Ken "Hawk" Harrelson, a five-time Emmy Award winner, will continue to provide fans with play-by-play on the road, broadcasting 78 of 81 away games in 2016. Harrelson, who will be starting his 32nd season in the booth, has agreed to a multiyear extension and will join Stone for the White Sox home opener as well as all four Crosstown Cup games vs. the Cubs. Benetti will handle play-by-play duties when the White Sox travel to Toronto in April.
Stone, the former Cy Young Award winner who begins his ninth season as a White Sox broadcaster in 2016, has agreed to a multiyear extension to continue as the club's color analyst.