Going, Going... Awful

Ahhh, my first Bert Flex post. Daily reader and first time poster. I feel like the kid that came up from the crowd in San Francisco in the 70's to play drums for The Who after Keith Moon passed out from taking horse tranquilizers. Anyway, let's pop this cherry...

During my travels from the STL to Western Illinois University to Peoria and now out here in Omaha, I have caught several different sports teams with very different announcers. Some are good and some make me cringe. In this post, I like to focus on the awfulness of several of them. So without further adieu (not Freddy), I give you the worst announcers in all of sports.

6. Chip Carey & Joe Carter (WGN Chicago Cubs)

I know this may look like a homer pick since I am fan of the birds on bat, but this one was almost too easy, and could easily be a number one. After grandpa Harry deep-sixed himself, WGN was in trouble. Steve Stone decided to leave for awhile, and it was the end of one of the best booth teams, mainly because Harry could find a way to butcher the hell out of Anthony Young's name. It was entertaining. Chip on the other hand was working with his pop, Skip, on TBS games. Chip got a call from the Superstation and took the gig hoping it was with someone good. Instead he got Joe Carter. Sure this guy was a hero in some place called "Toronto", but Carter sounded like he was always talking to an 8 year old at the Boys and Girls Club when he was on air. Thank God this team didn't last too long together.

5. Bob Carpenter & Ricky Horton (WB11)

Here's what really pissed me off about these two; since I lived in Peoria, the only games I could pick up were Chi-town ones because I had Comcast. No Fox Sports. But every Sunday, I could watch the Cards because our WB affiliate would have them on. Most of the time I couldn't even make it through an entire game because of these two. Basically, I have a vendetta against Bob Carpenter. He has Joe Carter syndrome where it sounds like he is talking to little kids. It would get even worse when kids would go into the booth because Bob would really turn on the vocabulary and try to be hip with the kids. Absolutely the worst local television team I have ever seen. Watching this pair reminded me of Bert and Ernie from Sesame Street, but more gay. Pretty bad when putting Ozzie Smith in the booth after he retired was a better option!

4. Jimmy Dykes (ESPN College Football)

You will notice an abundance of announcers from the Worldwide Leader towards the top, which makes the need for the Ocho inevitable. Dykes knows ACC basketball. This isn't the first time ESPN has put an ex-athlete in a sport that they know aren't familiar with; Heather Mitts covering baseball, Chris Spielman covering football (Zing!). Dykes is the sideline reporter for the late afternoon or night game, usually out west, so he gets some turd games. My favorite Jimmy Dykes moment happend during the 2004 season, when ESPN sent him to cover a Boise State game on the blue turf. Dykes tried to improv and had a bit where he would see how far he could throw a potato. He hyped it up and during a timeout, it was Jimmy's time to shine. He lined up on the back line of the endzone, ran to the goal line and heaved a potato about 15 yards and ate a face full of blue turf. It reminds me of my drunk uncle at Thanksgiving everytime.

3. Gary Thorne, Orel Hershiser, & Orestes Destrade (ESPN World Baseball Classic)

I wish Gary Thorne's name wasn't in this equation because I actually like him, at least when he is not screaming (which happens 88.3% of the time). ESPN tried to go PC for the WBC and get a latin player to cover the games. Destrade is a washed up former Marlin/Astros first bagger who's main claim to fame was that his goggles made Horace Grant and James Worthy's look like contact lenses. Destrade tried to throw a latin flair and would roll his r's and called every latin player by his real name (he called Bert Flex 'Jose Alberto Pujols' several times). Hershiser on the other hand had to have the last word on everything. Destrade did too. These two ribbed each other and it always got more awkward than the Jim Everett-Jim Rome "Don't call me Chris" episode. Watching this team reminded me of high schoolers doing local access show.

2. Jon Miller & Joe Morgan (ESPN Sunday Night Baseball)

Both of these guys get the 'terrible' stamp. Jon Miller doing Gigantes games isn't that bad, but team him up with Morgan and they are the worst baseball booth I've seen. Morgan is basically a black Steve Stone; an overrated know-it-all. Especially in the last three seasons, Morgan has gotten a huge ego. ESPN pimps Morgan out ever since they started the Fact/Fiction part of SportsCenter. He is their resident HOF player, so he always gets his say, and very rarely is he ever right. Morgan and Pellegrino have something in common when calling shots. Morgan ripped Edgar Renteria during Ozzie Smith HOF induction weekend on SportsCenter. Morgan was in Cooperstown and couldn't make it to the Cards Sunday night tilt that night to see Edgar jack a walk off. I believe David Justice may have been the replacement for that night. Pretty bad when that is an improvement. YIKES!

1. Pam Ward & Andre Ware (ESPN2 College Football)

It's hard to get up for a Northwestern-Purdue game that starts at 10-freakin o'clock on a Saturday, but these two make it even rougher. Granted, they get Big 11 games that get put on ESPN2, so most of those games are a big pile of deuce. They don't have much to choose from other than a whole lot of shitty teams; N-western, Purdue, Michigan State, Illinois, Penn State until this last year, Minnesota, and occasionally an Iowa/Michigan/Ohio State sneeks in when they play one of the mentioned skanks of the Big 11 on the road. This booth team is basically affimative action at it's best. ESPN doesn't waste another booth by putting another female in with good color man (not the racist term 'color'). ESPN should have given the stiff arm to the former Heisman winner, but of course ESPN whores itself out just to say they own someone like Ware. If I lived in Minnesota and happened to not bite the business end of a 9mm during a November snow, and happened to turn a Minnesota/Illinois game on at 10am with the Ward/Ware team, suicide would seem like a better option.

Well peeps , there you have it. I know it's up for debate since we all have seen some award winning attempts at awfulness. While it's hard to make someone number one, they all sound like huge piles of number two.


sir said...

Welcome aboard Big Head!

If you ever want to witness some truly awful announcing, you need to get MLB Extra Innings. As Shaun can confirm, some of these guys doing the local call are craptastic.

Also, I like Jon Miller but Joe Morgan is so bad, my mom can't even listen to him. You also left out Tim McCarver, who might be the most egotistical announcer ever and he knows nothing.

For those who enjoy seeing bad announcers getting called out... http://firejoemorgan.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

McCarver is TERRIBLE. Can't believe I forgot about him. Another ex Cardinal, Jim Kaat doing Yankees games is terrible. Royals announcers are AWFUL, but I didn't even want to acknowledge their existance. TBS is terrible too. It's like watching a bridge tourney, which I think ESPN will be broadcasting right after dominos. I had Extra Innings, and you are entirely correct. George Grande doing Reds games is worse than a colonoscopy. He hasn't improved since he was doing games on Channel 11 in the early 90's.

Dallas J. Hawk said...

That is a good list but you left off a few more worthy people.

First of all any descussion of the worst announcers has to include Billy "Fudge" Packer. This is the guy who never is happy with anything the players are doing. It is always negative from him and he is usually wrong. But in a few bad comments about when he played for Wake Forest in the 50's and how important the bench depth was. Ask any college basketball fan and they will say this man is the worst. He would have gained bonus points if he would have played Phil Marteli and St. Joe's a few years back but he chickened out.

Others left out were Jim Nance who scripts his calls. Hey Jim these calls are not clever please stop.

The currect WGN broadcast team of Bob Brenly and that other shitty guy who's name is not important enough for me to know. "That could be the break the Cubs need." This was said after a dropped foul ball with two outs in the ninth nobody on base the Cubs down 5.

Anonymous said...

York- The guy you're thinking of is Len Kasper. He is terrible, but a step up from Chip Carey. I didn't even want to get in to college basketball, but I think Bill Raftery is the worst. All he does is scream. The bad thing is that he usually does the good Big 11 or Big XII games, so I am forced to see him.

Notice most of these guys are somehow on ESPN doing something??