The winner of the 2014 Ford C. Frick Award is long-time Texas Rangers broadcaster Eric Nadel, who has been with the club for 35 seasons. Nadel has been a fixture on Rangers radio broadcasts since the late-'70s, and his selection comes after Nadel was a finalist for the award in each of the last three seasons.
Perhaps of more relevance to our readers is this: one of the nine other finalists that Nadel beat out was AA favorite Hawk Harrelson. After Tim McCarver''s win of the Frick Award a couple of years ago, Harrelson winning the award would probably have caused the Internet to have a meltdown (and you can put THAT on the board).
Starting next year, the Hall of Fame is changing the procedure for selecting the winner of the Frick Award by breaking the contributors into three categories – the "High Tide Era", the "Living Room Era", and the "Broadcasting Dawn Era". Each of these three eras reflects a different part of baseball history, much like the various committees that have replaced the Veterans Committee in recent years.The different pools of candidates will be rotated each year, with the Living Room Era broadcasters (1950s-1980s) considered next year, and the Broadcasting Dawn era broadcasters (pre-1950s) considered in the fall of 2015 (for the 2016 award) All of this year's finalists were part of the High Tide Era, meaning they won't be eligible to win the award for another three years, which isn't good news for older finalists like Harrelson, long-time Braves announcer Pete Van Wieren, and long-time Cardinals broadcaster Mike Shannon.
No one is questioning Nadel winning the award this year – he's a more than worthy recipient. But the rule change really sucks for the older broadcasters that were finalists this year, meaning that when they're eligible again in three years, they might not even be around to see it.