Tuesday, August 05, 2008
It's amazing to see how some people are truly admired a person, and while it usually happens after their death, the results can be amazing. Most every paper, ESPN and Major League Baseball have all paid tribute to the Braves' broadcaster and Turner Sports will have a handful of their own over the next few days.
TBS will first highlight the work of their colleague with a tribute at the start of the PGA Championship on TNT. Ernie Johnson will intro the piece and longtime friend and partner, Jim Huber will do the voice over for the video. While TBS wasn't always behind the announcer (for whatever reason), he certainly made a great number of friends in the business. A lot of people shared their thoughts yesterday and today and I felt like posting some of them....
Statement from the Caray Family: "We are overwhelmed by the number of friends, colleagues, co-workers, MLB players and people in the baseball community who have reached out to us and so grateful and touched by their support and prayers. We are also deeply appreciative by the outpouring of support from the fans who grew up watching him and shared the ride."
Braves Manager Bobby Cox: "We lost a real good friend," he said. "I met Skip in '77 when I signed on with the Braves. He helped me along. We weren't very good, and Skip, Pete and Ernie were the broadcasters. We'd go on those caravan tours and all. He was great to me. He'd give me a ride home a lot of nights from the park when my car wasn't working, my old Chevy."
Braves Catcher Brian McCann: "Right now, you just think about his family," McCann said. "That's where everybody's prayers are right now. ... When I first came to the Braves, he was one of the first people who came over to me in the clubhouse and introduced himself — like he needed an introduction. ... He was the man."
Braves Broadcaster Joe Simpson: "Everybody knew he was a great broadcaster," Simpson said. "But I will say that he was the best partner in the history of sports broadcasting. He was just awesome. There might have been some that were just as good. But nobody was better."
Skip Cary's Wife Paula: "He had so many wonderful offers from other teams [through the years], but he would never go because this is where he wanted to be. He loved Atlanta, loved doing the Braves. When he got here, nobody knew who he was," Paula Caray said. "And he was very proud of the fact he made it on his own here."
Broadcaster Pete Van Wieren: A few hours after hearing Skip Caray had died, some of the Braves broadcaster's friends gathered late Sunday at Lefty O'Doul's, a venerable watering hole across the street from the team hotel in downtown San Francisco.
"Will [Ohman, Braves reliever] came over to the bar and said, 'What was Skip's favorite drink in his drinking days?' " Van Wieren said. "I said, 'Double Dewar's on the rocks.' And Will ordered a shot of Dewar's for everybody."
When someone mentioned Caray probably would have gotten a kick out of that, Van Wieren said, "He would have liked that. In fact, Will wanted to get us doubles, and we said, 'No, we're not doing that.'
"Skip would not have liked that. He would have called us soft."
Turner Sports: "Turner Sports will recognize the legacy of Skip Caray over the next several weeks on the Turner family of networks which will include a remembrance during TNT’s coverage of the 90th PGA Championship on Thurs., Aug. 7; a special feature on his legacy during the Sunday MLB on TBS telecast on Sun., Aug. 10 and a tribute during the Braves game telecast on Peachtree TV on Tues., Aug. 12, what would have been Caray’s 69th birthday."
I'll try to get some of the videos up when I can, but the meantime don't be soft, and order a double of Dewars in honor of a stellar broadcaster and a well-liked, all-around good guy.
Braves recall their friend Caray (AJC)
Farewell to Skip Caray (Sports Illustrated)