The National Baseball Hall of Fame announced their finalists for the 2021 Ford C. Frick Award. Given each year to a broadcaster for “major contributions to baseball,” the eight Ford C. Frick Award finalists are: Buddy Blattner, Joe Buck, Dave Campbell, Dizzy Dean, Don Drysdale, Ernesto Jerez, Al Michaels, and Dan Shulman.
- Blattner – 26 seasons as a broadcaster, beginning while he was a player in the 1940s. Became widely known for his work alongside Dizzy Dean on national games for ABC and CBS from 1953-59.
- Buck – 36 years behind the mic in Major League Baseball and still going strong. Buck has spent the last quarter-century with FOX, calling 19 World Series. Earlier this year, Buck was announced as the Pete Rozelle Award recipient, earning him a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. His father Jack Buck was the 1987 Frick winner.
- Campbell – Began his broadcast tenure in 1978, a few years after retiring from his playing career. Campbell worked as an announcer for the Giants, Padres and Rockies, also spending nearly two decades with ESPN.
- Dean – A Hall of Fame pitching career preceded his 24 years as a broadcaster. Dean’s candid opinions and wit helped him become a popular personality behind the mic, notably spending 11 years with CBS for their Game of the Week telecast.
- Drysdale – Elected to Cooperstown in 1984 with 209 wins as a starting pitcher, his 23-year broadcasting career began in 1970. Drysdale called games for the Expos, Rangers, Angels, White Sox, and Dodgers, including six years alongside arguably the best broadcaster in baseball history, Vin Scully.
- Jerez – 26 years as a broadcaster and counting. Jerez joined ESPN Deportes in 1995 where he continues to call Sunday Night Baseball games for The Worldwide Leader.
- Michaels – Prior to winning the Pete Rozelle Award in 2013, Michaels spent a quarter-century as a baseball broadcaster from 1971-1995. Michaels called seven World Series during his career for ABC, also serving as an announcer for the Reds and Giants.
- Shulman – His impressive tenure as a Major League Baseball announcer included work for his hometown Blue Jays from 1995-2001, rejoining their coverage in 2016. Shulman also spent more than two decades with ESPN and served as the voice of Sunday Night Baseball from 2011-2017.
The winner of the Ford C. Frick Award will be announced Dec. 9, and honored during Hall of Fame Weekend in Cooperstown next July 24. Ken Harrelson, the 2020 Frick winner will also be honored during next summer’s Hall of Fame weekend after this year’s ceremonies were canceled because of COVID-19.
Joe Buck: ESPN Is Letting Us Set Tone For Monday Night Football
“It wasn’t well, you are at ESPN, you have to figure out how we do it.”
While Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will be calling football games on Monday nights for ESPN instead of Sunday afternoons for FOX this year, fans shouldn’t expect the broadcasts to be that much different, if at all, than what they’ve been used to over the last 20 years.
Buck was recently a guest on the Green Light with Chris Long podcast and said that ESPN knows that he and Aikman have to be comfortable in order for Monday Night Football to be a success.
“I know we are in the honeymoon phase. I’m not dumb. That stuff wears off after a while. They are like ‘however you guys have always done a game, that’s the way we want you to do a game whether it’s with regard to meetings vs. conference calls or when you guys show up, how you like the booth set up. However you want it, we are going to do it your way’ and that’s to their credit. It wasn’t well, you are at ESPN, you have to figure out how we do it.”
Buck and Aikman are obviously already very familiar with each other. Buck said that it will be important not to take that for granted or second guess what they already know.
“I think the one thing Troy and I have to avoid is trying to be different than we’ve been. They hired us based on what we’ve done and who we are and how we relate to each other and the way we see a game,” said Buck.
Mike Tirico, Tom Brady, Manningcast Win Sports Emmys
The annual Sports Emmys were handed out on Tuesday night, and some usual names and new names ended up taking home hardware.
Among the usual names were NBC’s Mike Tirico, who won for Outstanding Personality/Studio Host, and soon-to-be Sunday Night Football broadcast colleague Cris Collinsworth, who was named Outstanding Personality/Sports Event Analyst.
But among the new names as Sports Emmy winners include Tom Brady and both Eli and Peyton Manning.
Brady’s Man in the Arena saga won Outstanding Documentary Series, while the Mannings were rewarded for their work on the Monday Night Football Manningcast, which won Outstanding Live Series.
Here’s a rundown of some of the key Sports Emmy winners:
Here is a full list of winners and nominees for the 2022 ceremony.
Joe Buck Says He Won’t Miss World Series
“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game.”
Among the bigger chain reactions set off by Joe Buck leaving FOX for ESPN was the sudden vacancy in FOX’s main MLB broadcast booth.
The 2022 World Series will mark the first time since 1995 that Buck will not be on the microphone.
Speaking to Chris Long on his podcast Green Light, Buck hopes to be in a more exotic location watching World Series games this fall.
“I would like to be in Cabo San Lucas with a margarita in my hand and a half-smoked cigar watching Game 7 of the World Series,” Buck said. “Cheering on Joe Davis and John Smoltz, and Ken Rosenthal, and Tom Verducci, and Pete Macheska and Matt Gangl and right on down the line.”
Buck added he’ll take pleasure in turning the broadcast off if it’s Game 7 and there’s an insurmountable lead. But the broadcasting legend said even on a bigger scale, not calling any baseball games at all this season, let alone the World Series, is a bit surreal after covering the sport for so long.
“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game,” he said. “And that’s really weird to me, but I walk away really proud of what I and we did.”
He added that he will not miss the opportunity, because he does not feel like he will “leave any unfinished business” in FOX’s MLB booth.
Buck further praised his FOX colleagues and said it was time for a change. He knows Joe Davis will thrive in the opportunity.