Do yourself a favor and check out Vince’s chat with Tribe broadcaster Tom Hamilton over at ’64 and Counting. It’s a quick read, but worth it. Hamilton talks about this disappointing season, but reminds himself that he is fortunate to have the job he does. He fondly remembers his mentor Herb Score-
“I learned so many things from Herb [Score],” he says. “My first year, in 1990, we weren’t a very good team, and the club really hadn’t been any good since the ’50s. But he said that you can never let how a team is playing impact your performance. You owe it to the listeners. They’re not tuning in to hear you moan and groan. Every game is really its own entity.”
I loved listening to Herb call a game. His voice echoed through the kitchens I worked in throughout and following high school. I was listening to Herb during Spring Training back in ’95 when my new boss questioned why I would listen to a meaningless exhibition game for the Indians. I told him the team was going to the World Series. I’m not sure if Herb’s enthusiasm had gotten the better of me, but the team would prove me right and that summer was fantastic listening to Score announce the best baseball Cleveland had seen in 40 years.
It is with that fondness that I have to call into question ESPN. I don’t watch the ESPYs. I did leave the television on the other day when it started though, and watched the opening montage of highlights. In the middle of these images, they ran a memorial of sorts of the players, coaches and broadcasters that had passed away in the last year. There were 15 names and faces- including recently deceased Steve McNair, famed announcer Skip Carey, and even those that may not have been as well known (Felix Blanchard). But no Herb Score. As we know here in Cleveland, Score was more than just the Tribe’s announcer for 30+ years. He was also an all-star pitcher and former rookie of the year.
Since I didn’t watch the rest of the broadcast, I’m hoping that they had a more extensive tribute later in the broadcast, but I know not to hold my breath on that one. Anyone watch the entire broadcast? Did they mention Score anywhere? It seems to me that if you are going to pay tribute to those from the sporting community that passed away, you should do your homework and mention them all. The team is wearing a patch, it’s not like there isn’t a visual reminder.
(Youtube of intro here. Tribute starts around the 2:42 mark.)