As Bill Simmons acknowledged on his podcast Tuesday, everyone loves to mock sports TV announcers. But as Simmons then demonstrated on the same podcast, it is very funny to mock sports TV announcers.

In a conversation with Ringer editor and frequent sports media writer Bryan Curtis, Simmons discussed Jim Nantz, Gus Johnson, Joe Buck, Bill Raftery, Mark Jackson, Jeff van Gundy and many others. But the most biting and amusing commentary was reserved for local baseball announcers:

So why can’t we fix baseball announcing? How is it so awful every year? I just don’t understand it. Especially the local baseball announcers. It’s just the tone of it, everything’s wrong. All of it. I would change all of it. Everything about just having people, you know, they see a batter, and it’s like “Ah, remember his grandfather. Ah what a third baseman he was. I remember in 1978 I was there.”

Simmons then segued to 83-year-old NBA color commentator Hubie Brown.

Simmons: A lot of people like Hubie Brown more than I do.

Curtis: I’ve never understood the cult of Hubie.

Simmons: I’ve never understood it either, and I think now that he’s so old it’s like a marvel that he’s still doing it. But, you know, no sense of humor. Now I feel like I’m killing Hubie Brown. But he’s just very technical. He cares about the nuts and bolts. He’s bringing in stuff like, “Ah, that reminds in the 70s Bob McAdoo and Bob Kauffman used to run that play.” And it’s like, who are you saying that to? No one under 35 knows who those people are.

After some more discussion about old-timey announcers, then a conversation about the pitfalls of three-man broadcast booths, Simmons returned to baseball:

“I think that baseball is so fucking boring that you need three. I’m OK with three in baseball. But one of them just has to lay off.”

So in Simmons’ view, baseball announcers are awful, but it’s better to have more of them. Maybe that dilutes the awfulness or something.

Here’s the full podcast. The baseball stuff begins around the 17:20 mark.

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports,, and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.

  • what the – he is killing Hubie Brown for making obscure references? Does he read his own stuff? Did he ever listen to himself on NBA Countdown? All he does is refer to Celtics from 30 years ago!!

    Go away Bill. Go away forever.

  • newdog301

    Bill Simmons is a moron and this proves it.

    Hubie Brown is a tad overrated, but he’s great at what he does. The nuts and bolts are why we have commentators.

    And yes, baseball announcers at the local level aren’t great, but baseball is a different viewing experience than football or basketball. You’re with these people for 162 games. It’s sort of like they’re the friends watching the game in the room with you. That’s why most gear toward conversational styles and sometimes will tell stories that span multiple innings.

  • bibliomaine

    Bill Simmons would be lucky to be a minor league baseball announcer. His voice is terrible, borderline unlistenable. But his ego is so bloated, he’s got the onions to do his own radio spots for The Ringer. Of course, you’ll soon be able to add the Ringer to the list of ships Simmons had run onto the rocks. What then, Bill?

    • Jesse Lee

      Huh? I think overall he’s managed to do quite well for hisself.

  • Keith P.

    The most remarkable thing about his comments is that he likely has not experienced the Blue Jays TV announcers who are easily the worst in the entire league when Martinez and Tabler are in the booth.

  • Since the advent of MLB’s online service, I have listened to a lot of baseball broadcasters. Some are bad, but most are at at the very least competent. Many are really good. I love listening to SF Giants games, and Royals games, and really most baseball games. Outside of a handful of homers, most are not at the level Simmons is saying.

    But by now Simmons has lost all cred with me, anyway. He whines a lot, and then acts like he is the adult.

  • Nitish

    Bill Simmons, with a spectacular failure of a show, criticize one of the more spectacularly successful franchises in all of televesion, local baseball
    Hope AA allows outside links in comments

  • Stuie299

    Hubie > Chris Webber.

    Are some of Hubie’s references outdated? Yes, but I much rather hear him technically breakdown a play than C-Webb clumsily make a point for what seems like 5 minutes.

  • MrBull

    This coming from ‘Little Billy’ Simmons, the very same person who just recently had HBO take ‘Little Billy’s’ tv show out to the shed and put it out of its misery….that show was absolutely terrible…
    Simmons ranting and raving for a whole show on Brady, please…

  • Jesse Lee

    Hah, he’s actually spot on. Hubie is dreadful to listen to and three would bring more variety of topics, etc. This article is a FAIL

  • John Danknich

    Bill Simmons… still trying to be relevant, and failing.