I followed Harry from the time I was a kid, and it took me a while to realize why he was like he was. Back then, he did the first 3 innings on TV, then went off to do radio, and came back to TV after the 7th inning stretch, and as I got older, it became clear the drinking was while he was doing radio, because the first 3 innings, he was coherent and focussed, but when he got back, he was hilarious and often had no clue whether pitches were balls or strikes, a bad state normally for a play by play guy, but for Harry, it was funny. Steve Stone did a good job of sort of taking over the play by play when Harry was really gassed.
Normally, this would be a disaster, but Harry was a happy drunk and told funny stories and Stone was there to pick up the slack. It varied though, some days he clearly drank more than others, but I don't think he was ever good to drive from the 7th on.
As opposed to say a Rex Huddler, who seems amped up on amphetamines as he brown-noses the Angels and the organization all night. I expect local announcers to be homers to some degree, but there's rooting for your team, and then there's just plain idiocy. The way Rex talks about the players, it seems impossible they could ever lose. Plus Rex's stories are always about Rex, and Rex's life and experiences aren't as nearly interesting as he seems to think they are.
George_Foreman wrote:The Braves have an awsome crew for calling games (with the notable exception of Chip Caray, who is just awful, especially in comparisson for his grandfather (Harry) and father (Skip)).
"Boring" is what you guys call them? Well sure, they don't blow a gasket every time a ground ball gets hit to the short stop. They have what I view as a very good approach to the game. They're calm and relaxed when the game is playing out that way, and that just makes the excitement and tension you feel from their calls in the high-pressure situations all the more palpable. Skip Caray and Joe Simpson are probably my favorite two. Their awful puns are hilarious, and they genuinely seem like they're having a good time calling the games (well, at least when the Braves aren't losing 20 of 25....).
Anyhow, I don't feel like I need to get "excitement" from the announcers or whatever. I get that from the game. All I want from the guys in the box is an accurate picture of what's going on and a good time listening. If all you wanted from a sportscaster was yelling and arrogance, you can go listen to Marcela Balboa call some World Cup.
call it homer bias..but i like the braves announcers for the reasons that you mentioned. they are not over the top.
the skip stuff is dry humor at it's best. and i love to hear joe describe situations from a player's perspective.
and i loved the fact that they would rotate the crew during half of the game....so that you could not get too used to hearing one guy too much.
Jacques Doucet and Rodger Brulotte of the former Expos' French-language radio network were a great duo. Doucet was the clam guy and Brulotte the cheerleader. Doucet, who was at the mike for 35 years, was nominated last year for the Ford Frick award. On the Expos' last game in New York, he almost cried on the air.
One thing I liked about them and about any broadcaster is when they get into funny stories when it's 9-0 in the 8th inning of the second game of a doubleheader on the West Coast and they know that about 5 of 6 people are still listening.
It ain't the same without baseball up here in the North. Many of us miss the Expos dearly.
Chicago White Sox announcers I can not stand... Always hollering "Get Foul" on a ball down the line, or acting like they know everything... Some of the best announcers are the Reds announcers, of course they are fans of the Reds, but they hardly ever show it...
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Krunk City King$ wrote:guess that i should add chris berman to the worst list.....
I was going to mention Berman, but then I figured he shouldn't even be considered an announcer, because all he really does is talk. While we're at it, lets just get it out of the way: all ESPN announcers suck (except Miller). Gary Thorne can even get a little annoying.
It seems to be mixed on the boards, but I really like Orel Hershieser... Maybe not funny or Mr. Excitement, but he knows pitching backwards and forwards.... To me, he and Steve Stone are heads and tails above anybody else when it comes to breaking down a pitchers vs. hitter duel.
sockeye wrote:Well, he may be no Vin Scully, but I sure like Mike Shannon. First guy to hit a HR in Busch stadium, and still there calling games on the radio when it ended. Now that's some history/longevity.
He worked in Jack Buck's shadow all those years, but sure has a knack for alternating the slow and the excited. With a voice that could grind gravel, too.
I like Mike Shannon. He might be the closest thing to Harry Carey on the radio today.