Hawk Harrelson

The Baseball Hall of Fame has announced the MLB announcers who are the finalists for the Ford C. Frick Award. The award is given for excellence in baseball announcing and this year, the finalists include Gary Cohen, the beloved television voice of the New York Mets, Mike Krukow, TV voice of the San Francisco Giants, Pat Hughes, radio voice of the Chicago Cubs, DeWayne Staats of the Tampa Bay Rays, and Hawk Harrelson, the long-time voice of the Chicago White Sox.

Other finalists include Jacques Doucet who called the Montreal Expos in French, the late Bill King, the long-time voice of the Oakland A’s and the late Ned Martin, the Boston Red Sox announcer on both TV and radio from 1961-92.

There are many good choices and for fans of the Cubs, Giants, Mets and Rays, they have to come to know their voices quite well, having either watched or listened to the games they’ve called.

But the most intriguing case is Hawk Harrelson. While he first began his career with the Boston Red Sox in 1975, he’s best known for calling White Sox games for 26 years. There’s no doubt that he wears the White Sox on his sleeve and his calls have reflected that whether it’s documenting a blown lead, going crazy over a walk-off home run, or making sense of a bench-clearing brawl.

Some announcing purists who want their announcers totally objective could have an argument about Hawk’s inclusion here, but if you listen to Gary Cohen’s calls for the Mets and Hughes on the Cubs Radio Network, they’ll be fair, but also be happier when the team wins rather than not.

Hawk Talk has been a staple on the White Sox broadcasts for many years and while he’s cut back on his schedule to only call road games on Comcast SportsNet Chicago or WGN, having Harrelson not in the booth would be like not having sand at the beach.

It would be rather interesting to see Harrelson accepting the Frick Award at Cooperstown next summer.


About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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