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It’s Outta’ Here: Philadelphia Loses Treasure

Harry Kalas, fantasy baseball announcerSwing and a long drive, there it is, number 500! The career 500th home run for Michael Jack Schmidt!

65,000 plus on their feet here at Veterans Stadium. The Tugger needs one more…Swing and a miss! Yes, he struck him out! Yes, they did it! The Phillies are world champions! World champions of baseball! It’s pandemonium at Veterans Stadium! All of the fans are on their feet. This city has come together behind a baseball team!…Phillies are world champions! This city knows it! This city loves it!

One strike away; nothing-and-two, the count to Hinske. Fans on the their feet; rally towels are being waved. Brad Lidge stretches. The 0-2 pitch — swing and a miss, struck him out! The Philadelphia Phillies are 2008 World Champions of baseball! Brad Lidge does it again, and stays perfect for the 2008 season! 48-for-48 in save opportunities, and watch the city celebrate!

It’s funny how announcers become a part of your life, even more so than players do.  They have longer careers; they are part of your childhood and growing up. You remember exactly what they said and when they said it.  Baseball announcers are like milestones in your life.

If they stay around long enough, baseball announcers are a city’s treasure.

Since 1971, Harry Kalas has been the voice of the Philadelphia Phillies.  And, even if you don’t live in Philadephia as I do, you knew the distinctive sounds of Harry Kalas.

Kalas did the announcing for NFL Films and he was recently on a national television commercial with Donovan McNabb’s “Mom” for Chunky Soup.  His long-time announcing partner who preceeded him in death, Richie Ashburn, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1995.  Kalas was inducted in 2002.

Harry Kalas died today, somewhat appropriately in the broadcast booth in Washington.

The Phillies held on to defeat the Washington Nationals 9-8 in today’s home opener for the Nationals, but today will not be remembered for a Phillies win.

Appropriately, in the fourth inning, Shane Victorino hit a homerun to give the Phillies a 3-2 lead.  It was the first time in four decades that Phillies’ fans didn’t hear…

it’s outta’ here.”

Harry the K, it won’t be the same listening to the Phillies without you.

Say hi to Whitey for us.

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