Following his 40th season as a MLB announcer, long-time Chicago Cubs‘ radio voice Pat Hughes has received one of the highest levels of recognition in the profession. That would be the Baseball Hall of Fame‘s Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting. The Hall announced that decision Wednesday:
Congratulations to Pat Hughes, the 2023 Ford C. Frick Award winner! https://t.co/iVOCeL7DC9 pic.twitter.com/26VRgPoHUF
— National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum ⚾ (@baseballhall) December 7, 2022
This pick came after the Hall of Fame announced the 10 finalists in October. The other finalists were Dave Campbell, Joe Castiglione, Gary Cohen, Jacques Doucet, Tom Hamilton, Jerry Howarth, Ernie Johnson, Duane Kuiper, and Steve Stone.
Hughes has had an impressive sportscasting career. Originally from Tucson, Arizona, he attended San Jose State University, then started his broadcasting career with the Triple-A San Jose Missions in 1978. He also spent time with the Columbus Clippers, then started in the MLB ranks as a TV announcer for the Minnesota Twins in 1983. A year later, he moved to Milwaukee and called Brewers’ games on the radio with Bob Uecker (the 2003 Frick Award winner) through 1995.
Hughes then moved to Chicago to call Cubs’ games on the radio beginning in 1996. He’s done that since, also occasionally filling in on the TV side. Here’s his call of the team’s 2016 World Series win (he’s seen above at the subsequent parade for that victory):
@PatandRon670 with the @Cubs radio call. Most relieving moment of my life. #FlyTheW #cubs #WorldSerieschamps pic.twitter.com/Cy2zMbKIYx
— Zeke (@zeke1c) November 3, 2016
And here’s a good quote from the Hall of Fame’s release on him:
“Known throughout the Midwest for his easy delivery and unparalleled knowledge, Pat Hughes has called some of the biggest moments in Cubs history and has provided the narrative for one of the most successful eras in the history of the franchise,” said Josh Rawitch, President of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. “Since arriving at Wrigley Field in 1996, Pat has served as the radio voice for nine postseason teams – matching an ardent fan base with his own passion in every broadcast. His reverence for baseball history and gift for storytelling have made him one of the game’s broadcast treasures.”
Hughes is a nine-time winner of the Illinois Sportscaster of the Year Award. He also won the Wisconsin Sportscaster of the Year Award three straight times from 1990-92. He’s called more than 6,000 MLB games. And now, he’s headed to the Hall of Fame.
[Baseball Hall of Fame; photo from Dennis Wierzbicki/USA Today Sports]