Thursday, February 22, 2007

NO outs to go!

Those are the words of K.C. Royals play-by-play man Denny Matthews calling the final out of the 1985 World Series.  Well, Mr. Matthews was today awarded the 2007 Ford C. Frick Award, and will be inducted into the announcer's wing at the Baseball Hall of Fame in July.  I am quite pleased with this development, because no matter how sucky the Royals have been at times, Denny is the voice of everyone's summers around here, and he's so very deserving of this honor.  It's refreshing to see a Hall of Fame get one right for a change, too!

Denny has been with the Royals since Day One in 1969, and he's a good as they come as a baseball play-by-play man, although he's not well-known outside of the Midwest.  I'm really surprised that the Hall didn't pass Denny over again this year—there were several other worthy finalists, including Seattle screamer Dave Niehaus, the White Sox' Hawk "He Gone" Harrelson and the late Dizzy Dean (who really WAS dizzy at times!).

Even though the Royals suck like a Hoover now, I always make it a point at least a couple times each summer to grab my radio and camp out under the stars on my patio with a few beers and listen to Denny do a Royals broadcast.  He's like your favorite pair of shoes—so very comfortable!  Some Royals fans have criticized Matthews for being too low-key, but I think that's a bunch of hooey.  Yes, Denny is much more low-key (think Jack Buck) than the high-energy Niehaus (think Harry Caray), but there's nothing wrong with either style, really.  Denny's not only a fine play-by-play man, but he can also make a rain delay enjoyable with the stories he tells.  And fear not, Stacy, my friend—your boy Niehaus will get in the Hall soon too!

A hearty Royal Blue salute from yours truly to a Kansas City sports legend—this honor is long-overdue and well-deserved!  Bravo, Dennis, bravo!

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