Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
November 9, 2005
BASEBALL: Best Trade Yet

The Mets will promote Gary Cohen to the lead play-by-play job on their new cable network. Via Repoz, who notes that this spells curtains for Fran Healy. Of course, I get more games on the radio than TV, so I'll be awaiting word on Cohen's replacement.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 8:12 PM | Baseball 2005 | Comments (11) | TrackBack (0)

If never were crueler words spoken than "Tinker-to-Evers-to-Chance," or whatever it was Franklin P. Adams said, never have kinder words been spoken than "Curtains for Fran Healy."

May we be so fortunate.

Posted by: Mike at November 9, 2005 8:36 PM

That is most excellent news! Healy always seemed like a nice guy, but he was an awful announcer. I don’t ever recall him uttering an interesting or unpredictable phrase. Glad to see his reign of terror come to an end.

Cohen is one of the very best play-by-play men around and Hernandez, Cone and Leiter are all promising options to team with him.

Posted by: TMH at November 9, 2005 8:51 PM

The dark at the end of the tunnel is I am a Cablevision customer; they may not carry the games this year, similar to the YES fight they had several years ago.

Great baseball play by play on radio is like nothing else. That's why I loved Bob Murphy. I forgave his many mispoken comments as he painted such a great picture. People lost sight of how much he knew of the game. Cohen is like that as well.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at November 10, 2005 11:56 AM

My favorite "Murphyism" was his call of a routine fly-ball to the outfield, especially one that ended a tight inning, or the final out of a game.

I can recall many-a-time driving home, listening to the game, base runners on, McDowell or Orosco or Sisk on the hill, 9th inning, protecting a Met lead. And someone (always seems like Schmidt or Sandberg or Jack Clark in my memory) hitting, as Murph described, a "deeeeep fly into right, Strawberry backing up, he's up at the wall . . . and he makes the catch. Met's win. Stay tuned for the happy recap."

Then I'd get home and watch the replay, discovering, of course, that Straw never moved, catching the lazy fly from the comfortable surroundings of the Strawberry Patch, that spot in right where he stood no matter who was up, no matter the situation. Any drama came from the mouth of Murphy. Hell, when a team wins 90, 95, 100+ games a year for 7 seasons, someone's gotta manufacture the excitement during those mid-summer win streaks.

Listening to Straw, Orosco, and, of course, Murph on the car radio. Man, I miss those days.

Posted by: Mike at November 10, 2005 1:03 PM

My own, although I'm not sure if it was Murph, was when Davey Johnson ran out of position players, and kept ferrying Orosco and I think McDowel to left and right field, in and out, depending upon who was up.

Maybe the only time a pitching change was actually entertaining.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at November 10, 2005 1:20 PM

Ah, the Strawberry Patch. The grass was even worn down there from Darryl standing in the same place on every pitch.

Posted by: The Crank at November 10, 2005 1:23 PM

That was the extra inning game against the Reds in '86. I think HoJo won it on a homer off of Ted Power. Or maybe it was Joe Price.

That was some game: Knight's fight with Eric Davis, Dave Parker dropping an easy fly to allow the Mets to come back, the flip-flopping of Orosco & McDowell you mentioned.

Of course, you win 108 games, you're gonna have a few nice victories in there.

Posted by: Mike at November 10, 2005 1:26 PM

Yeah, I miss Murphy too. Cohen is a great radio announcer. TV is different though; I hope he transitions well. But regardless of how good Cohen is, he'll never be Murphy.

(Best Murphy moment I recall: "They win the damned thing, 10-9!")

Posted by: Al at November 10, 2005 2:58 PM

Too right. I forgot the "damn game" comment. As an aside, I remember one game where Straw won a game off Lee Smith in the 10th, with a lightning bolt into the right field bullpen. Place was packed, everyone was chanting "Darr-ryl- Darr-ryl!!" Except me. I was screaming "Mee-ee, Mee-ee."

They were a strange team, lots of tough guys, loads of talent. Fun to watch. Back to Murph: remember his awe and wonderment at Gooden in '84 and '85. You could tell he was calling a pitcher he felt was better than Seaver and Koufax, you just felt it in his voice. He was an emotional, fun, good natured guy, you could tell he loved baseball, and loved even more the chance to tell you about it.

Posted by: Daryl Rosenblatt at November 10, 2005 3:17 PM

Gary Cohen is an excellent announcer, so that is welcome news. And good riddance to Fran, who does seem like a decent guy, but was just an awful announcer. I gather the Mets are looking for a color man to do virtually all the games. I hope for Keith Hernandez, but as he probably doesn't want to work that much, it will probably be someone like Darling or Cone or Leiter. Personally, I'm hoping they will still get Ralph into the booth for a handful of games, as well. He no longer qualifies as even a marginally decent announcer, but his stories are still worth hearing.

Posted by: Jerry at November 10, 2005 11:51 PM

Totally agree on Ralphie. Of course half the fun was the way he ribbed on Healy.

Posted by: Mike at November 11, 2005 8:59 AM
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