Tag Archives: MLB

My Baseball Teacher- Milo Hamilton

Baseball for me has always been more than just a game.  Baseball taught me the value of fair play, a love of statistical data, the importance of everyday consistency and the impact of language, storytelling and the spoken word.

Almost daily, during the summers of my youth, I played baseball. Hitting, fielding, and running under the hot southern sky was what I lived for.  With school out for the summer, the sandlot fields of Georgia became my classroom for life lessons and so much more.

At night my classroom shifted from the sandlot fields to the fields and stadiums of the big cities of the major leagues. As almost every night during those summers, I listened to baseball.

The radio would take me to far-a-way fields like Crosley Field in Cincinnati, Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, and Wrigley Field in Chicago. My teacher for these baseball lessons was Milo Hamilton.

Milo Hamilton was the lead announcer for my Atlanta Braves.  His descriptions of the accounts of the game produced word pictures that brought alive for me the skill and exploits of players like Clete Boyer, Ralph Garr, Dusty Baker, Rico Carty, Phil Niekro, Orlando Cepeda and Hank Aaron.

However, it is was Hamilton’s style of calling a game and his use of language that made an everlasting impression on me.

One summer, I broke my arm and was unable to play the game I love.  Instead of playing I spent the summers in the “press box” of the little league field keeping score and acting as the public address announcer.  Soon, those public addresses turned from just announcing the names of the players to full-fledged play-by-play.

And what announcing style did I emulate?  You guessed it…Milo Hamilton.  Surprisingly my announcing became popular and I gained a new nick-name that summer as folks starting calling me “Milo”.

Milo Hamilton, died last week at age 88.  He was a sports casting legend. His broadcast career included stints with the Browns, Cardinals, Cubs, White Sox, Braves, and Pirates.

He spent 27 years as the voice of the Houston Astros. During that time, he was at the microphone for 11 no-hitters, Craig Biggio’s 3,000th hit in 2007, and the 2005 World Series where Astros played the Chicago White Sox.

Milo, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992.  At his retirement in 2012, Milo held the record for the number of major league baseball stadiums broadcasted from at 59 different parks.

Most famously, Milo was known for calling Hank Aaron’s record breaking 715th career home run in 1974.

However, for me Milo Hamilton was my baseball teacher.  He not only expanded my knowledge of the game. But he also taught me how the effective use of language can inform, excite, and inspire.

Milo Hamilton and the power of his the radio calls greatly increased my knowledge, love and passion for the game.  And for this baseball fan — I will be forever grateful.

My 2015 MLB Predictions

Spring is finally here and with its bloom comes the crack of the bat.  Our national pastime, baseball is back.  Today, marks the first day of a full slate of regular season games and along with it comes my annual predictions; or if you prefer, my “wild ass speculations” about the outcome of the April to October marathon which is Major League Baseball.

If you had a Kanas City – San Francisco World Series at the end of the 2014 season, I will meet you in Vegas ready to place a bet on your 2015 picks!  Now, my annual predictions are presented for “entertainment” purposes only.  Therefore, if you have any notion on using my baseball insights to win a pot of gold, take a gander at my 2014 picks; read them and see how impressively far off I was with my picks.

Now, I proudly present my Baseball Predictions for 2015.

MLB Divisions2

For the first time, I have produced a power ranking of all 30 MLB teams.   If you are a real baseball junkie like me, please take a look at my 2015 Power Rankings.

Baseball is one of the 8 passions of my life, I am so pleased to share this passion with the readers of this blog.

 

©2015 Marben Bland