Monday, April 13, 2009

Broadcasters Sometimes More Popular Than Players

More sad news coming from the baseball world today. Longtime Philadelphia Phillies broadcaster Harry Kalas passed away today. He was 73. You can read more about his sudden passing at the bottom of the page. While I sit here and watch the Pirates home opener, it makes me think about all of the great broadcasters in Pittsburgh and how lucky we are to have so many good ones.

With the Pirates, broadcasting legend Lanny Frattare just retired at the end of last season. I loved listening to Lanny. He had such a great voice for baseball. On nights that Lanny was doing radio, I almost always listened to him instead of watching the game. He was the face of the franchise for the last 15 seasons, which was no picnic with the continuous losing. He may have been more popular than some of the players as the losing continued. Lanny recently got a job as a professor at Waynesburg University and also did an interview with Channel 11 talking about his abuse of alcohol, which you can read about at the bottom of the page too. There is Noooo doubt about the fact that Lanny was loved by many Pirates fans and will be for a long time to come. Today Tim Nettinger is doing the game and he sounds great. It almost sounds like he should be doing a national broadcast for TBS or somthing like that, but I like him thus far.

The Penguins have had Mike Lange behind the microphone for the past 30 plus years and there is nothing that I love more than listening to him. Once Lange's voice comes over the airwaves saying "It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh" that alone is enough to get me ready for a game. The one thing I love about Lange though is that he pulls for the Pens, but he calls the game fairly. He isn't so much of a homer that he tries defending the Penguins when they mess up or somthing like that. I respect Lange so much for staying in Pittsburgh when he could have left after being fired. I recently found out that he had recieved offers prior to the lockout from ESPN and the Chicago Blackhawks to be their play-by-play person. The day Lange retires is the day a good thing comes to an end.

We have also had some other great broadcasters in Pittsburgh. Bob Prince broadcasted Pirates games for 28 years and was probably the most popular broadcaster in Pittsburgh history when he passed away in 1985. He had many different sayings, but he always ended a Bucco win with "we had em alllll the way." Myron Cope was also a legend broadcasting Steeler games. We really don't need to say much more about Myron other than he was very unique.

Below are some links that add to the article..... reports on the death of Harry Kalas
Lanny Frattare talks about his life after broadcasting
Gunnerisms from Bob Prince

1 comment:

rhoadesy said...

i feel the same way stein, the new broadcaster is really good .. voice sounds good a national one from fox or tbs.. that article on lanny by strakey was good too