August 4, 2008


Braves announcer Skip Caray dies: Son and fellow broadcaster, Chip, recalls last conversation with dad (TIM TUCKER, 8/03/08, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Skip Caray made the call when the Atlanta Braves won the World Series in 1995: "Yes! Yes! Yes! The Atlanta Braves have given you a championship! Listen to this crowd!"

He made the call when Sid Bream scored on Francisco Cabrera's pinch-hit to win the National League Championship Series for the Braves in 1992: "Here comes Bream! Here's the throw to the plate! He iiiiiiiisssssssss ... safe! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! ... Braves win!"

And he made the call in the late innings of a lousy game in the lost season of 1979: "You have our permission to turn off the TV and go to bed now ... as long as you promise to patronize our sponsors."

Harry Christopher "Skip" Caray Jr. moved from St. Louis to Atlanta in the 1960s partly to escape the professional shadow of his father, the iconic and inimitable baseball broadcaster Harry Caray. Over the next four decades, with a style very much his own, Skip Caray became as much the voice of baseball in the Southeast as his father had been in the Midwest. When we first started getting the Superstation the Braves had Bob Horner and were about to convert Dale Murphy from catcher to centerfield (which may cost him the Hall of Fame?). So they had a spurt where they were decent. But TBS was one of the only stations we got when I was in law school and the Braves traded Murphy and brought up Glavine, Pete Smith and Smoltz to learn on the job. That was when Skip Caray was at his best, with a horrifically bad team.

Chipper, Cox, other Braves mourn Caray: Broadcast partner Van Wieren says his honesty will be missed (CARROLL ROGERS, 8/03/08, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Cox tapped a napping Van Wieren on the shoulder during the flight to inform him of Caray's death.

Fans related so well to Caray, Van Wieren said, because he told it like it was, even if he couched it in humor.

"But behind the humor there was an honesty and a commitment to telling it like he believed it to be that never, ever varied," Van Wieren said. "If he didn't like it that a game was two minutes late getting started, everybody knew about it. If he had an opinion on a player, he said it. And he had a way of saying it that was sometimes humorous. The way he could take a bad ball game, in some of those bad years especially, and turn it into a fun broadcast, whether it was by talking about something in the game or whether it was talking about something that didn't have anything to do with the game, maybe it was a movie that was coming up after the game or maybe it was a restaurant that he'd gone to. It could have been anything. He was just a very entertaining broadcaster and a very good one. The game was still the most important thing, but if game was decided by the fourth or fifth inning, people would still watch the rest of the game just to hear what he had to say about things. That's a very, very unique ability."

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Posted by Orrin Judd at August 4, 2008 7:36 AM

I only really started listening to baseball on the radio when I moved to Atlanta. Skip set the standard, for me -- I mean, I've listened to some or all of probably 3/4 of the total Braves games for the last seven or eight years, and when you hear one guy with so much character in a close-to-conversational format day after day like that, it cuts out a deep space in your daily headspace.

He's sounded rough all year; you could hear it coming, and I was dreading it. I will miss him.

Posted by: Twn at August 4, 2008 4:21 PM
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