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The Storytellers: From Mel Allen to Bob Costas: Sixty Years of Baseball Tales from the Broadcast Booth
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Past book reviews & discussions > Discussion of "The Storytellers"

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message 1: by Lance (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) | 12691 comments Mod
Share your thoughts on "The Storytellers" by Curt Smith here.


message 2: by Michael Linn (new)

Michael Linn | 10901 comments The beauty of the book, is that you can jump around to stories by the Bob Ueckers, Mel Allens or whoever your favorite announcers were. There`s tons inside
Mike Linn


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments I just began reading it. I laughed out loud twice just in the preface alone. I love the stories of the re-creation days. The story by Ronald Reagan I remember him telling on one of the roast shows.


message 4: by Michael Linn (new)

Michael Linn | 10901 comments Read on H-MAN, there are a gazillion fables jammed in there
Mike Linn


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments I have to relate this anecdote from the Storytellers because I roared out loud when I read it. Pee Wee Reese and Dizzy Dean were pahdners on radio for a while:
Dizzy is doing play by play for four innings when Pee Wee asks Diz, "what would you say he's throwing out there?"
Diz says, "Well Pee Wee, I have been watching him for four innings, and I believe that's a baseball."


message 6: by Harold (last edited Aug 09, 2018 03:54PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments I can't help myself. Howard Cossel and Bob Uecker are in the booth and Cossell says, "Bob, you being a former ball player wouldn't know
the meaning of the word truculent. Uecker says, "Sure I do Howie. If you had a truck and I borrowed it, that would be a truck-you-lent."


message 7: by Michael Linn (new)

Michael Linn | 10901 comments Uecker also tells a story about a fan riding him so bad that he decided to dive into the stands to take him on. Uecker figured he had the advantage since he still had on all his catching equipment. The fan got arrested for assault & Uecker got arrested for impersonating a player.
Mike Linn


message 8: by Lance (last edited Aug 10, 2018 05:25AM) (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) | 12691 comments Mod
I'm having trouble getting a copy. When I can't find it at the NYPL, you KNOW it's been out of print awhile. Since I still have my copy of Smith's other book, "A Talk In the Park", I think I will see what the best stories are from that.


message 9: by Michael Linn (new)

Michael Linn | 10901 comments Don`t whine, things always seem to just show up...….
Mike Linn


message 10: by Lance (new)

Lance (sportsbookguy) | 12691 comments Mod
No whining, an observation...and yes, things do just seem to show up.


message 11: by Craig (new)

Craig McGraw | 49 comments This is a true story. I once heard Bob Prince a long time Pirate announcer do this. Gene Alley came to bat with 2 outs. Alley hit a fly ball down the line as Prince was telling a story about Clemente. Prince never said if the ball was fair or foul just continued his story and when finally ended his story said it was time for a word from the sponsor and went to commercial. After the ad was over Jim Woods (Prince's partner) had taken over the play by play and started the next inning. It was several minutes before he routinely gave the score , indicating that Alley had not hit a homer and it was not until the Pirates came up again did the audience find out that Alley had ended the inning. Only when Alley came up later it was discovered he grounded out to short. Prince could really weave a tale.


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments I'm partial to Richie Ashburn and Harry Kalas. Ashburn was notorious for hitting foul balls almost at will.Kalas told the story when Rich went to Wrigley field and a Cub player approached him in the batting cage. The unnamed player told Asburn he wasn't getting along with his wife and asked Asburn to hit a foul ball where the wives hit-"take a shot at her will you?"
Ashburn is up during the game and hits a screaming liner foul behind the Cubs dugout. The Cubs player stands up in the dugout waving a towell and yells" Whitey, two rows back and one to the left and you got her."


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Chuck Thompson tells a wonderful story about the last game played at Baltimore's Memorial Stadium in October 1991. As the game was about to start, without any introductions and without prior knowledge by the fans, 75 of the best Orioles in history came out in their uniforms' era and manned their positions(Brooks, F Robinson, Boog, Palmer, Aparicio etc). They played the music from The Field of Dreams. The packed stadium went wild and virtually everyone including the players were crying. It gave me the chills just imagining how powerful the emotions must have been.


message 14: by Craig (new)

Craig McGraw | 49 comments I was at that game and the Orioles kept the lid on what they had planned for the closing of Memorial Stadium. Prior to the game Brooks Robinson and Johnny Unitas threw out the first pitch( Unitas threw a football) . After the game all the players left the field and it was getting quiet. Then the theme of Field of Dreams started and Robinson, in uniform , ran out to 3rd base and the crowd was stunned. For several minutes only Mr Oriole was alone on the field, then Frank ran out to right he was followed a few minutes later by Palmer on the mound and then slowly one by one the old players came out on the field taking up their old positions. By now the fans were onto the surprise and the roar was deafening. Cheers continued as only after the last player entered were introductions made. It was a fitting understated tribute to the old ballpark


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments THat's a better description than the book gave.


message 16: by Ed (new)

Ed Quigley Saw the NYPL does have a copy but you have to read it in the library. Fortunately for me the Queens Library had 1 copy. I requested it.


message 17: by [deleted user] (new)

Craig wrote: "I was at that game and the Orioles kept the lid on what they had planned for the closing of Memorial Stadium. Prior to the game Brooks Robinson and Johnny Unitas threw out the first pitch( Unitas t..."

Must have been great to be there.


message 18: by Craig (new)

Craig McGraw | 49 comments It was great to be there but it was also a sad day. I saw my first MLB game there in 1954 at the age of 4. I spent a great deal of my youth in that park. Every year for Christmas all I wanted was my Orioles season ticket. At that time you were a season ticket holder if you purchased 15 dates of your choice. Of course I included every doubleheader. I was a season ticket holder from 1965 to close at Memorial Stadium, saw every opening day from 1961 to close and every World Series game played there. The park should have been saved


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Craig wrote: "It was great to be there but it was also a sad day. I saw my first MLB game there in 1954 at the age of 4. I spent a great deal of my youth in that park. Every year for Christmas all I wanted was m..." Do you ever go down to Sarasota for spring training? That stadium and the people who work it are wonderful. I go every year.


message 20: by Craig (new)

Craig McGraw | 49 comments Went to spring training in Ft Lauderdale but unfortunately haven't been to Sarasota


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Craig wrote: "Went to spring training in Ft Lauderdale but unfortunately haven't been to Sarasota" Sarasota is the Orioles home ground. Go some winter, it's beautiful


message 22: by Harold (last edited Aug 18, 2018 07:26AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Loved the Miss Cheesecake story told by Bob Costas and Budd Blattner. Also Diz Dean's praise of Ed Lopat for his testicle fortitude


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments I can't resist this from the great Bob Uecker. I'm sure it's exaggerated, but probably not all.
"When I was with the Phillies, Gene Mauch would say., 'Get a bat, and stop this rally' or 'forget the bat, and try for a walk'. Like me, Gene took it personally when, as a hitter, I'd look at the third base coach and he'd turn his back. And the catcher, instead of giving a signal to the pitcher, would yell out what he wanted."


message 24: by Mike (new)

Mike (mike9) | 6338 comments Most of those were included in Uecker's hall of fame induction speech. I played it the other day. 18 minutes of laughs.


Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Mike wrote: "Most of those were included in Uecker's hall of fame induction speech. I played it the other day. 18 minutes of laughs." Yes I saw it twice and thought he was as good a stand up comedian as I have seen, It was a riot.


message 26: by Harold (last edited Aug 19, 2018 02:04PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Harold Kasselman | 17729 comments Great story told by Lindsay nelson about the hapless 62 Mets. The only real capable player was Richie Ashburn. So they had Elio Chacon in left, Rich in center, and lumbering Frank Thomas in right. One day there is a high fly ball in left center and all three converge on the ball. Rich calls for it but Elio crashes into Ashburn. So Rich asks catcher Joe Christopher, who was bi-lingual, how to say" got it in Spanish. He tells him,"yo lo tengo". The next time fly was hit, Rich is yelling "yo lo tengo" and Frank Thomas bowls him over.


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