5) Chicago Cubs – 2.72
-Len Kasper (play by play)
-Jim Deshaies (analyst)
-Todd Hollandsworth (analyst – select)
Most popular grade: A (35% of voters)
Analysis: The Cubs had the fewest first place votes of the top five teams in the rankings. Kasper is another guy that seems to be on his way up, getting numerous above average marks from our readers. The Cubs broadcast booth also got plaudits for being very sabermetric friendly.
“Kasper and DeShaies should be the most recognized broadcast team since Cubs games air on WGN America nationwide. They leave me with a feeling of being satisfied as they aren’t overly biased towards the Cubbies and they provide you the info you want to know.” -DanielOrmsby
“I love how Len Kasper and Jim Deshaies mix Humor in with their PBP and Color Commentator duties.” -CUbsfan
“Kaspar is really understated and knowledgeable, while DeShaies has a sly wittiness that comes in handy when the Cubs are down 14-2 and are on their seventh pitcher of the day.” -berndon4
“Len Kasper is a gem, a hell of a broadcaster.” -The Stork
@awfulannouncing Len & JD (Cubs) are pretty good IMO. Good analysis and entertaining filler. You can tell they enjoy working with each other
— SLATER ON Z102.9 (@slatenite) April 22, 2014
4) New York Mets – 2.99
-Gary Cohen (play by play)
-Keith Hernandez (analyst)
-Ron Darling (analyst)
-Kevin Burkhardt (play by play – select)
Most popular grade: A (57% of voters)
Analysis: The Mets had the second-most first place votes in the rankings, but also had more last place votes than any team in the top ten. Burkhardt will be heading towards greener pastures following this season, but the Cohen/Hernandez/Darling trio still was extremely well-liked without him in the fold.
“Burkhart is really, really underrated and is going to be a fantastic, household announcer. ” -clt0002
“The Mets announcers are so much better than most other announce teams, it’s not even close. If only the on-field product were as good as the on-air team!!!” -mister_met
“I watch Mets games on random nights just so I can listen to Ron and Keith. They’re interesting and know a lot about baseball and give great analysis.” -danzyl66
@awfulannouncing Mets. A+ tv broadcast. Gary Keith and Ron with kev burkhardt on the side. Gotta be one of the best in the biz
— Charlie (@Chuck_Nice) April 18, 2014
@awfulannouncing The Mets have the best broadcast team in baseball. Knowledgeable, passionate, entertaining.
— Tom Ratchford (@ratchford_tom) April 17, 2014
3) Baltimore Orioles – 3.14
-Gary Thorne (play by play)
-Jim Palmer (analyst)
-Jim Hunter (play by play – select)
-Mike Bordick (analyst – select)
Most popular grade: A (44% of voters)
Analysis: The Orioles were the only team to have straight distribution of grades from A to F. The excellent reviews for Thorne aren’t shocking – the man is a pro’s pro. He and Jim Palmer have years of experience in the broadcast booth and their professional work resonated with readers.
“Thorne is a very good play-by-play guy. He’s probably not as good as he was at hockey, but he is solid and doesn’t take himself seriously, which I admire in a baseball announcer doing this 162 days a year. Palmer is simply the best color analyst I’ve heard doing a baseball game, and has been for over 20 years.” -sangell2007
“Gary Thorne and Jim Palmer are absolutely tremendous – I’ve heard similar sentiments from those not in Baltimore as well. Professionals, insightful, and not overtly homers” -agrod29
@awfulannouncing I honestly believe that Gary Thorne is the best in the business. Palmers knows his stuff and the other 2 are average.
— Adam Kirr (@AdamKirr) April 15, 2014
@awfulannouncing Jim Palmer is one of the most objective analysts on TV, in a sport full of homers. Gary Thorne has long been great on PBP.
— Raj_S_S (@Raj_S_S) April 14, 2014
2) Los Angeles Dodgers – 3.41
-Vin Scully (play by play – California/Arizona)
-Charley Steiner (play by play – non-California/Arizona)
-Orel Hershiser (play by play – non-California/Arizona)
Most popular grade: A (69% of voters)
Analysis: If the Dodgers had as many votes cast as the Giants, they would have all needed to be A grades for them to surpass San Francisco in the rankings. I was a little shocked that Los Angeles didn’t finish at the top of our rankings, but there was some backlash (gasp!) towards Scully for his frequent in-game stories.
“[Scully] is one of the few baseball announcers who get it right over and over again.” -Lenny Baldini
“[Steiner] simply does not care about his job. Far-too often does he blow calls, or just misreport information, and some innings, he just doesn’t even call the game.” -JVNSiegel
“Vin Scully is the best in the business. It doesn’t matter who his subs are. As long as Scully is around, they deserve an A.” – DanielOrmsby
1) San Francisco Giants – 3.46
-Duane Kuiper (play by play)
-Jon Miller (play by play)
-Dave Flemming (play by play)
-Mike Krukow (analyst)
Most popular grade: A (74% of voters)
Analysis: The Giants had more A grades than any other team in the league, and that total surpassed the total amount of votes that seven teams had. Kuiper and Krukow topped our reader rankings, and there wasn’t much negativity at all towards them. The Giants have a real depth chart of great announcers across television and radio. Perhaps a surprise #1 choice, but one that is certainly worthy of the top spot.
“Duane Kuiper is the best in the business today. No one calls a dinger like he does (It. Is. OUTTA here!), his strike out call is understated and perfect (got ’em), and as a former player, he has an analysts’ insight in his play by play role.” – Akosh89
“Kuiper and Krukow are the best in this bunch I think. I really enjoy their games, especially ones from AT&T park. They are like a comfortable old pair of slippers.” -gregbeaulieu
“I love the Giants Broadcasters and how they will normally find a way to mix humor into their TV and Radio Broadcasts.” -CUbsfan