2021 Ford C. Frick Award Ballot

Eight of the National Pastime’s most respected and familiar voices have been named as the finalists for the 2021 Ford C. Frick Award, presented annually for excellence in baseball broadcasting by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

Candidates from the National Voices category will be considered for the 2021 Frick Award in accordance with the three-year Frick Award election cycle.

Finalists

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The eight finalists for the 2021 Frick Award are: Buddy Blattner, Joe Buck, Dave Campbell, Dizzy Dean, Don Drysdale, Ernesto Jerez, Al Michaels and Dan Shulman. The winner of the 2021 Frick Award will be announced on Dec. 9 and will be honored during the July 24 Awards Presentation as part of the July 23-26 Hall of Fame Weekend 2021 in Cooperstown, along with 2020 Frick Award winner Ken Harrelson.

All candidates except Blattner, Dean and Drysdale are living.

The Frick Award election cycle rotates annually among 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 repeats every three years, with the Broadcasting Beginnings ballot to be reviewed in the fall of 2021 and the Major League Markets ballot to be reviewed in the fall of 2022.

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

Final voting for the 2021 Frick Award will be conducted by an electorate comprised of the 12 living Frick Award recipients and three broadcast historians/columnists, including past Frick honorees Marty Brennaman, Bob Costas, Ken Harrelson, Jaime Jarrín, 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 (formerly of the Dallas Morning News) and Curt Smith (historian).

The 2021 Frick Award ballot was created by a subcommittee of the voting electorate that included Costas, Matthews, Nadel, Smith and Van Horne.

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.

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 offseason 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

36 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 25 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 League Championship Series 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.

Dave Campbell

32 years (Padres, 1979-89; Rockies, 1993-97; ESPN 1990-2010)…Worked at ESPN as a television and radio broadcaster starting in 1990, serving both the play-by-play and analyst roles…He has also been a major part of ESPN’s postseason coverage…Shared the Padres’ microphone for 11 seasons with Jerry Coleman…Had a five-year stint on television with the Rockies…Played eight years (1967-74) in the big leagues with the Tigers, Padres, Cardinals and Astros as a utility infielder…Campbell’s first major league hit was a home run.

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 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.

Ernesto Jerez

26 years (1995- ) for ESPN Deportes, where he has called Sunday Night Baseball games for more than a quarter of a century…Graduated from Pontificia Universidad Cátolica Madre in the Dominican Republic in 1991 and Northeast School of Broadcasting in Boston in 1995…Has called the MLB All-Star Game since 1997 and the World Series since 1998…Also handed ESPN play-by-play duties at World Baseball Classic.

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.

Dan Shulman

26 years (Blue Jays, 1995-01; 2016-present; ESPN, 1995-2017), taking over as the voice of ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball package in 2011…Spent the previous eight years as play-by-play commentator on ESPN Radio…Handled play-by-play of the Toronto Blue Jays on TSN for seven years through 2001 before returning in 2016 to call games for SportsNet…Joined ESPN in 1995 as a play-by-play commentator for baseball and college basketball…Has called postseason games for the network since 1998, including World Series action since 2011… Has also called NHL action for TSN and NBA for both TSN and ESPN.

2020 Award Winners

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Hall of Fame Awards

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