For well over half a century, the ebullient, colorful style of 1989 Ford C. Frick Award winner Harry Caray personified baseball in the Midwest. Before television blanketed the country and before backyards (and front yards) were overrun with satellite dishes, Caray's outspoken, opinionated, sometimes outrageous and often controversial approach was the public's pipeline from the Great Plains to the Eastern seaboard.
Caray began his major league career behind the mike with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1945. After a quarter-century in St. Louis, he migrated to California where he spent the 1970 season broadcasting the games of Charlie Finley's Oakland Athletics. He then moved on to Chicago, where he announced White Sox games for 11 years, after which he went cross-town to Wrigley Field to work for the Cubs. In his first 41 seasons in the booth, Caray never missed a game, and the fan favorite went on to broadcast over 8,300 games in his 53-year career in the big leagues.
1989 Ford C. Frick Award Winner Harry Caray - BL-1799-89 (National Baseball Hall of Fame Library)
Caray's reputation as a fearless and out-spoken critic frequently led to disenchantment on the part of his various employers. On the other hand, few have been a better salesman for baseball for so long.