2018 Ford C. Frick Award Ballot

Eight of the National Pastime’s most recognizable and honored voices have been named as the finalists for the 2018 Ford C. Frick Award, presented annually for excellence in baseball broadcasting by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

The winner of the 2018 Frick Award will be announced on Dec. 13 at baseball’s Winter Meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., and will be honored during the July 28 Awards Presentation as part of the July 27-30 Hall of Fame Weekend 2018 in Cooperstown. Buck, Costas, Michaels and Morgan are living, while all other candidates are deceased.

Eight Finalists Announced

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The eight finalists for the 2018 Frick Award are: Buddy Blattner, Joe Buck, Bob Costas, Dizzy Dean, Don Drysdale, Al Michaels, Joe Morgan and Pee Wee Reese. The winner of the 2018 Frick Award will be announced on Dec. 13 at baseball’s Winter Meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., and will be honored during the July 28 Awards Presentation as part of the July 27-30 Hall of Fame Weekend 2018 in Cooperstown. Buck, Costas, Michaels and Morgan are living, while all other candidates are deceased.

The Frick Award election cycle rotates annually among Current Major League Markets (team-specific announcers); National Voices (broadcasters whose contributions were realized on a national level); and Broadcasting Beginnings (early team voices and pioneers of baseball broadcasting). This cycle will repeat every three years, with the Broadcasting Beginnings ballot to be reviewed in the fall of 2018 and the Current Major League Markets ballot to be reviewed in the fall of 2019.

Criteria for selection is as follows: “Commitment to excellence, quality of broadcasting abilities, reverence within the game, popularity with fans, and recognition by peers.”

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Final voting for the 2018 Frick Award will be conducted by an electorate comprised of the 11 living Frick Award recipients and four broadcast historians/columnists, including past Frick honorees Marty Brennaman, Dick Enberg, Jaime Jarrin, Tony Kubek, Denny Matthews, Tim McCarver, Jon Miller, Eric Nadel, Vin Scully, Bob Uecker and Dave Van Horne, and historians/columnists David J. Halberstam (historian), Barry Horn (Dallas Morning News), Ted Patterson (historian) and Curt Smith (historian).

The 2018 Frick Award ballot was created by a subcommittee of the voting electorate that included Enberg, McCarver, Miller, Nadel and Smith.

To be considered, an active or retired broadcaster must have a minimum of 10 years of continuous major league broadcast service with a ball club, network, or a combination of the two.

Candidate Bios

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Buddy Blattner

26 seasons…Liberty Game of the Day (1949-51), St. Louis Browns (1950-53), Mutual Game of the Day (1952-54), ABC Game of the Week (1953-54), CBS Game of the Week (1955-59), St. Louis Cardinals (1960-61), Los Angeles Angels (1962-65), California Angels (1966-68), Kansas City Royals (1969-75), NBC (1964, 1969)…As a player for St. Louis Browns, Blattner made some off-season income writing for local television shows in St. Louis…After his career, it was obvious to the Browns that his media experience would make him a great addition to radio station KWK’s baseball coverage…Blattner worked the final seasons for the Browns and worked the early years for two expansion franchises, the Kansas City Royals and Los Angeles/California Angels…He broadcast the famous at-bat by Eddie Gaedel in 1951 as orchestrated by Bill Veeck…Became widely known as the broadcast partner for Dizzy Dean on ABC and CBS national television broadcasts from 1953-59…Passed away Sept. 4, 2009.

Joe Buck

33 years, all with the Cardinals and also FOX Sports lead baseball announcer, teaming first with Tim McCarver and most recently with John Smoltz…Has been with FOX for 22 seasons (1996- )… Has won multiple Emmy Awards…Began with FOX baseball at age 27, becoming the youngest play-by-play announcer to call a World Series since Vin Scully (25) in 1953…Has broadcast 19 World Series (1996, 98, 2000-16), 20 LCS and Mark McGwire’s 62nd home run in 1998…Began baseball broadcasting with the Louisville Redbirds in 1989…The son of 1987 Ford C. Frick winner Jack Buck.

Bob Costas

24 years (1982-89, 1994-2000, 2009-) with NBC Sports, The Baseball Network and MLB Network…Joined NBC Sports in 1980, working first with Tim McCarver, Sal Bando and Tony Kubek as play-by-play voice on NBC’s Saturday Game of the Week broadcasts…Quickly demonstrated love and knowledge of the game, featuring an approachable style and unmistakable chemistry with Kubek, the 2009 Frick Award winner…Called the ALCS in 1983, 1985, 1987 and 1989 and hosted All-Star pregame shows in 1983, 1985, 1987 and 1989 along with World Series pregame shows in 1982, 1984, 1986 and 1988… Stayed at NBC Sports when the national baseball package moved to CBS from 1990-93, but returned to baseball in 1994 with The Baseball Network, handling play-by-play for the 1994 All-Star Game as well as the 1995 ALDS and ALCS and Games 2, 3 and 6 of the World Series…Called 1997 World Series for NBC along with 1998 ALCS, 1999 NLCS, 1999 World Series and the 2000 All-Star Game and ALCS…Since 2009, has called games and appeared as a host for programs on MLB Network…A 28-time Emmy Award winner, Costas has also handled play-by-play and worked as a studio host for pro football, pro basketball, horse racing and Olympics broadcasts.

Dizzy Dean

24 years (1941-48, 1950-65), in St. Louis and nationally...Hall of Fame pitcher with St. Louis Cardinals, elected in 1953...Last National League pitcher to win 30 games, in 1934...Arm injuries forced early retirement in 1941 at age 31, and he immediately turned to broadcasting, announcing both Cardinals and St. Louis Browns games on radio from 1941-46...Instant success as a broadcaster because of his exuberant personality and homespun humor...From 1947-49 announced Browns games exclusively...In 1950, went to New York as a television announcer, taking that city by storm during his two years there... Returned to St. Louis in 1952 and did Browns games on radio for two years, until team moved to Baltimore...After taking 1954 off, he joined CBS television and became the star of their "Game of the Week" telecast for the next 11 years, through 1965...Became a national sensation, as always for his combination of lively descriptions, candid opinions and at times, incorrect English and trouble with names...His pairing with Pee Wee Reese in the early 1960s is credited with bringing many new fans to baseball…Passed away July 17, 1974.

Don Drysdale

23 years (Expos 1970-71; Rangers 1972; Angels 1973-80; White Sox 1982-87; Dodgers 1988-93)…Pitched for Dodgers from 1956-69, winning 209 games and setting records with six straight shutouts and 58 consecutive scoreless innings in 1968…Elected to Hall of Fame in 1984…Began announcing career with Montreal Expos in 1970-71, followed by one year with Texas Rangers and eight years with California Angels…Did national telecasts for ABC-TV for a decade beginning in 1977…Broadcaster for Chicago White Sox from 1982-87, then rejoined Dodgers in 1988, teaming with Vin Scully for six years until his sudden death during 1993 season…High point came with Dodgers in 1988, when he announced all games of Orel Hershiser’s assault on scoreless inning streak mark, openly rooting for Hershiser to break his own record…Passed away July 3, 1993.

Al Michaels

25 years (1971-1995) in baseball, with the Reds (1971-73), Giants (1974-76), NBC (1972), ABC (1976-89), and the Baseball Network (1994-95), …One of ABC mainstays on Baseball broadcasts...Resume includes calling seven World Series, six All-Star Games and eight LCS…Also covered the 1995 Divisional Playoffs.

Joe Morgan

25 years (Giants, 1986-94; A’s, 1995; ESPN, 1990-2010), mostly as a network analyst…Analyst for ESPN's weekly Sunday Night Baseball telecasts for 21 seasons…Worked Division Series games for ESPN from 1996-2000…In 2002 provided analysis on ESPN-produced Division Series telecasts on ABC Family…Won a Sports Emmy for his work in 1997… Previously worked Oakland Athletics' home games on Sports Channel (1995) and San Francisco Giants' games (1986-94)…From 1985-88, he worked as a college baseball analyst for ESPN…Began broadcasting career in 1985 covering Cincinnati Reds games for WLWT-TV, the local NBC affiliate…Morgan served as an analyst on select ABC Monday Night Baseball telecasts and as an analyst for the 1988 League Championship Series and 1989 World Series on ABC… Worked as a baseball analyst on NBC’s national telecasts form 1994-2000, including the 1995, 1997 and 1999 World Series...Worked on ESPN Radio’s World Series broadcasts in 1998 and from 2001 through 2010…Elected to the Hall of Fame in 1990.

Pee Wee Reese

11 years, mostly on network television…Played 16 years in majors leagues with the Dodgers…Long-time team captain, led Dodgers to seven National League pennants…compiled 2,170 hits, but best known for leadership role in accepting Jackie Robinson as team member starting in 1947…Elected to Hall of Fame in 1984…retired in 1958, and in 1960 joined CBS-TV announcing team, partnered with Dizzy Dean on “Game of the Week” telecasts…after six years with CBS, teamed with Curt Gowdy on NBC’s “Game of the Week” telecasts for three years…Also did Cincinnati Reds telecasts for two years…Passed away Aug. 14, 1999.

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