The 1985 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award was Buck Canel, a household name in the Latin American baseball community for five decades.
Canel began his career in journalism as a writer for the Staten Island (New York) Advance, and subsequently was a correspondent for the Associated Press, Havas (the French wire service), and Agence France-Press (the French News Agency).
As the Spanish broadcaster for NBC's Gillette Cavalcade of Sports, Canel was behind the microphone for an unprecedented 42 World Series, beginning in 1937. He also did Spanish language broadcasts of New York Yankees home games for the city's more than two million Latinos and Puerto Ricans.
Canel's contribution to baseball transcended the mere play-by-play of the game. As former Baseball Commissioner Peter Ueberroth observed, "His broadcasting of baseball to Latin America had a definite impact on the growth of baseball interest in that region and provided an equally important impetus for young Latinos dreaming about a career in professional baseball."
Canel passed away on April 7, 1980.