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View Full Version : Hawk Harrelson's vision


ShooterMcGavin
08-14-2012, 08:53 PM
Hawk's vision seems like it's on a quick decline. It seems like Hawk often has trouble following the flight of fly balls. I've noticed him saying "stretch!" on no-brainer home runs, and alternatively, on routine fly outs that don't even reach the fence, his voice will become excited in anticipation of a home run.

I wonder if this will be Hawk's final season in the broadcast booth, because I'd hate to see him finish like Pat Summerall.

SpartanSoxFan
08-14-2012, 08:58 PM
Interesting observation. I kind of noticed those calls also but didn't think to connect it to a vision issue. And of course we know that Hawk has had his share of vision issues in his lifetime, not just age-related but due to his boxing career.

I wouldn't be so quick to compare Hawk to Pat Summerall. A large part of Summerall's decline as a broadcaster was due to alcoholism.

Noneck
08-14-2012, 09:13 PM
The vision problems are only noticeable on fly balls. So the solution is to drop the stretch stuff or of course retire.

russ99
08-14-2012, 09:16 PM
Whoop-de-doo. Put a TV in the booth. Problem solved.

Some Sox fans just can't wait until they get rid of Hawk... You'll miss him, just like I miss Harry and Jimmy.

Noneck
08-14-2012, 09:21 PM
Whoop-de-doo. Put a TV in the booth. Problem solved.

Some Sox fans just can't wait until they get rid of Hawk... You'll miss him, just like I miss Harry and Jimmy.

You cant pick up a fly ball on a monitor like you can seeing it live.


Sorry you didnt enjoy Harry and Jimmy.

34rancher
08-14-2012, 09:52 PM
I always wonder how the announcers can truly tell from some of the angles they sit at in the booths to the field. It can be tough from right behind home plate and up. Idk, but I think Hawk is right way more than wrong.

SpartanSoxFan
08-14-2012, 09:58 PM
I don't know if putting a monitor in the booth is the answer either. Take that DP in the bottom of the 5th tonight...the ball was already in Youk's glove before the camera could get to it. Then again, that ball was absolutely SCALDED by Encarnacion.

Railsplitter
08-14-2012, 10:23 PM
You can determine where the ball will land by watching how the outfielers react to the flight of the ball. Witness Red Barber's call of Al Gionfrido (I know I'm spelling it wrong)robbing Joe Di Maggio of a homer in the 1947 Series. He's watching Gionfrido, not the ball.

Quentin08
08-14-2012, 10:27 PM
Does anyone know why Hawk regularly wears sunglasses in front of the camera? I can't remember the last time I saw him without sunglasses. Even during his appearance on Windy City Live he wore sunglasses in the studio. :cool:

DSpivack
08-14-2012, 10:27 PM
Interesting observation. I kind of noticed those calls also but didn't think to connect it to a vision issue. And of course we know that Hawk has had his share of vision issues in his lifetime, not just age-related but due to his boxing career.

I wouldn't be so quick to compare Hawk to Pat Summerall. A large part of Summerall's decline as a broadcaster was due to alcoholism.

Hawk had a boxing career?

amsteel
08-14-2012, 10:31 PM
Hawk had a boxing career?

According to his autobiography baseball is his, like, 8th best sport.

Lip Man 1
08-14-2012, 11:35 PM
They have monitors in the booth, it's up to the announcer if they want to use them or not. Some do, some don't.

Lip

SpartanSoxFan
08-14-2012, 11:51 PM
According to his autobiography baseball is his, like, 8th best sport.

I don't have the info in front of me but I believe he was an amateur boxer of some merit. Wasn't he a Golden Glove recipient?

Brian26
08-15-2012, 12:00 AM
Whoop-de-doo. Put a TV in the booth. Problem solved.

Some Sox fans just can't wait until they get rid of Hawk... You'll miss him, just like I miss Harry and Jimmy.

You cant pick up a fly ball on a monitor like you can seeing it live.


Sorry you didnt enjoy Harry and Jimmy.

No, Russ is saying he misses Harry and Jimmy, and people will miss Hawk when he's gone too when we're back to Gary Thorne 2.0 or Wayne Hagin.

Brian26
08-15-2012, 12:01 AM
Does anyone know why Hawk regularly wears sunglasses in front of the camera? I can't remember the last time I saw him without sunglasses. Even during his appearance on Windy City Live he wore sunglasses in the studio. :cool:

The bigger question is why the hell are you watching Windy City Live?

chisoxfanatic
08-15-2012, 12:07 AM
I wonder if this will be Hawk's final season in the broadcast booth, because I'd hate to see him finish like Pat Summerall.
I don't think this will be his final season in the broadcast booth. He had a special done about him on CSN within the last year, and I distinctly recall him stating that he will die in that broadcast chair. I don't see him even being "phased out" by the White Sox anytime soon, because he's become such a huge staple for White Sox baseball. If you ask any baseball fan what they think of when they think of the White Sox, Hawk Harrelson will probably be one of the first things that comes to mind.

SephClone89
08-15-2012, 12:13 AM
I don't think this will be his final season in the broadcast booth. He had a special done about him on CSN within the last year, and I distinctly recall him stating that he will die in that broadcast chair. I don't see him even being "phased out" by the White Sox anytime soon, because he's become such a huge staple for White Sox baseball. If you ask any baseball fan what they think of when they think of the White Sox, Hawk Harrelson will probably be one of the first things that comes to mind.

This is probably the case.

I know a lot of fans of other teams who don't care for the Sox...largely because of Hawk.

DSpivack
08-15-2012, 12:19 AM
This is probably the case.

I know a lot of fans of other teams who don't care for the Sox...largely because of Hawk.

That might be the reason, or just an excuse.

I don't give a crap what other fan bases think of our team, and I'm not a big lover of Hawk, either.

chisoxfanatic
08-15-2012, 12:42 AM
This is probably the case.

I know a lot of fans of other teams who don't care for the Sox...largely because of Hawk.
Yep...My Red Sox fan boyfriend can't stand Hawk, and he's just one example...But, Hawk does get people to think and talk about the White Sox, so he's kinda doing his job, IMHO.

chicagowhitesox1
08-15-2012, 02:31 AM
I've never liked him too much but I think i would miss him when he's gone. he is a part of my youth afterall.

Daver
08-15-2012, 02:56 AM
I've never liked him too much but I think i would miss him when he's gone. he is a part of my youth afterall.

I will dance a jig of joy when Ken Harrellson leaves the booth.

kufram
08-15-2012, 06:41 AM
Very few baseball announcers are actually very good in my opinion. Cricket announcers are actually better but then they have to talk all day so they have to try harder to be interesting.

Most BB announcers don't bring anything to the game experience. They just report the news.... which we can see if on television. I'm not a Hawk fan but he does at least bring passion for the White Sox into the broadcast. Stone is better than most that I've heard.

Never mind the fly balls. It pitches that I think they could use the monitor on. Often the location called isn't the same location I see from the center field camera. Of course there is no way they can see high or low from where they sit.

doublem23
08-15-2012, 08:49 AM
I always wonder how the announcers can truly tell from some of the angles they sit at in the booths to the field. It can be tough from right behind home plate and up. Idk, but I think Hawk is right way more than wrong.

I think this is more correct than anything else, I'm sure this thread was inspired by Hawk yelling "Stretch!" on that Adam Dunn monster shot Monday night, but that ball was hit to straight away CF which is an angle that's difficult to read from right behind the plate. It's tough to pick up the flight of the ball when you only have 1 plane to work with, as most OF will tell you the trickiest balls to catch are the ones hit directly at you, when you're tracking a ball on either side, it's a lot easier to quickly judge where that ball will land. I think in a lot of these cases, he just watches the outfielders' reactions. On Monday, Gose turned and started back on Dunn's ball like he had a chance before realizing it was way gone. Friday night, OTOH, Danks' walk-off was a no doubter and Hawk had no problem with that call.

I don't really mind the Hawkisms, and I definitely like the homerism, but I can't stand Hawk's country-fried Southern accent. But, you gotta do what you gotta do, because as bad as Hawk can be sometimes, my god, Farmer and DJ on the radio are awful. Awful. I guess if I bought an HD radio I could just listen to the games on 95.5 HD2 in Spanish. :cool:

cws05champ
08-15-2012, 09:11 AM
Hawk has often said though that he doesn't watch the ball as much as he does the outfielder's reaction to the ball. Sometimes that can be deceiving as well and could lead to him making a wrong call.

SephClone89
08-15-2012, 09:14 AM
Hawk has often said though that he doesn't watch the ball as much as he does the outfielder's reaction to the ball

I wish all the casual fans at the park would realize this.

OH GOD THE BALL'S IN THE AIR

mantis1212
08-15-2012, 10:00 AM
Hawk's vision seems like it's on a quick decline. It seems like Hawk often has trouble following the flight of fly balls. I've noticed him saying "stretch!" on no-brainer home runs, and alternatively, on routine fly outs that don't even reach the fence, his voice will become excited in anticipation of a home run.

I wonder if this will be Hawk's final season in the broadcast booth, because I'd hate to see him finish like Pat Summerall.

I know Hawk had cataracts surgery a few years back, but I think its just the Rogers Centre where he's having trouble

Hitmen77
08-15-2012, 11:00 AM
That might be the reason, or just an excuse.

I don't give a crap what other fan bases think of our team, and I'm not a big lover of Hawk, either.

...But, Hawk does get people to think and talk about the White Sox, so he's kinda doing his job, IMHO.

That's pretty much how I feel - especially the bolded above.

When I was a kid, I remember people saying they hated the White Sox because they could not stand their unprofessional buffon of an announcer who was an embarrassing joke to the profession of TV broadcasters. Then that announcer went over the the Cubs and he became a nationally loved institution, the reason why people like the Cubs, and they built a statue to him.

I'm not a huge Hawk fan, but people who hate his homerism but loved Harry with the Cubs are hypocrites. The hatred for Hawk is nothing new. I remember when Kent Hrbek of the Twins publicly complained that Hawk would say "Grab Some Bench!" on Sox telecasts when opposing players struck out. Yeah, shocking to hear the Twins whine about something, isn't it? :violin:

SephClone89
08-15-2012, 11:52 AM
I remember when Kent Hrbek of the Twins publicly complained that Hawk would say "Grab Some Bench!" on Sox telecasts when opposing players struck out. Yeah, shocking to hear the Twins whine about something, isn't it? :violin:

Wasn't it always "he'll grab some bench?"

SOXSINCE'70
08-15-2012, 12:25 PM
Wasn't it always "he'll grab some bench?"

I prefer

:hawk
"HE GONE!"

ssirish317
08-15-2012, 12:35 PM
I've noticed that he's been saying some things backwards recently...for example, in the intro of one of the games a few days ago, instead of saying 'In the beautiful city of Chicago' he said, "In the city beautiful, Chicago'. That's the second or third time this season that I've heard him transpose words when he's speaking.

SephClone89
08-15-2012, 12:57 PM
I've noticed that he's been saying some things backwards recently...for example, in the intro of one of the games a few days ago, instead of saying 'In the beautiful city of Chicago' he said, "In the city beautiful, Chicago'. That's the second or third time this season that I've heard him transpose words when he's speaking.

You're kidding, right?

He's been calling Chicago "the City Beautiful" for a while now.

SephClone89
08-15-2012, 12:58 PM
I prefer

:hawk
"HE GONE!"

:chunks

Lip Man 1
08-15-2012, 12:58 PM
In 1991 after Hrbek hit a home run at the new Comiskey Park he touched home plate, looked up to the TV booth and had a few things to say to Hawk.

Lip

SoxFanCPA
08-15-2012, 01:30 PM
I've noticed that he's been saying some things backwards recently...for example, in the intro of one of the games a few days ago, instead of saying 'In the beautiful city of Chicago' he said, "In the city beautiful, Chicago'. That's the second or third time this season that I've heard him transpose words when he's speaking.

He says it all the time, he isn't transposing the words, that is what he says.

Hawk is the man. Once he dies, they should just use a soundboard to call the games.

Lamp81
08-16-2012, 12:16 AM
Yep...My Red Sox fan boyfriend can't stand Hawk, and he's just one example...But, Hawk does get people to think and talk about the White Sox, so he's kinda doing his job, IMHO.

You'd think a Red Sox fan would love listening to Hawk, you get a story on Yaz and the late 60s Red Sox nearly every game.

That being said, there will be a huge void when Hawk leaves. Anyone else remember how bland White Sox telecasts were in the late 80s when Hawk was GM, and then announcing for the Yankees?

I just don't see a colorful personality who could replace him, especially now that the Sox seem to REQUIRE that their broadcasters have played with the team, with the exception of Hawk (although he does like to remind us he almost signed with the White Sox instead of the Red Sox in 1967, as a free agent).

fisk4ever
08-16-2012, 11:38 AM
Back to the question of Hawk's eyesight. In the last week or so I wondered if the same thing. Sometimes it seems like he is struggling with depth perception.

doublem23
08-16-2012, 11:50 AM
I've noticed that he's been saying some things backwards recently...for example, in the intro of one of the games a few days ago, instead of saying 'In the beautiful city of Chicago' he said, "In the city beautiful, Chicago'. That's the second or third time this season that I've heard him transpose words when he's speaking.

It's not an error, Chicago is the City Beautiful.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_Beautiful_Movement

Mingo
08-16-2012, 03:51 PM
Actually - I got idea Hawk was on the decline - when he went bonkers on the Umpire call for like 3 innings (joe West) - last week he also go way upset an another umpire's balls and strikes.

But on the long ball - you watch the outfielders.

everafan
08-16-2012, 04:32 PM
Getting old sucks. He still has all his faculties but all of his reactions are a little slower this year. He misspeaks, gets momentarily confused, and can't follow the plays as well. There are things about him I can live without but overall he's still entertaining.

Bob Roarman
08-16-2012, 06:00 PM
He says it all the time, he isn't transposing the words, that is what he says.

Hawk is the man. Once he dies, they should just use a soundboard to call the games.

They can do that now.

PeteWard
08-16-2012, 09:31 PM
Twice he said Flowers' HR reached the "upper Tank" . This was after Viciedo's HR right before. :scratch:

mzh
08-16-2012, 09:34 PM
Twice he said Flowers' HR reached the "upper Tank" . This was after Viciedo's HR right before. :scratch:
Flowers HR was a moonshot to the upper level of the stadium. What's so confusing?

SI1020
08-16-2012, 09:49 PM
It's not an error, Chicago is the City Beautiful.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_Beautiful_Movement The city used that phrase a lot in official prounouncements when I was a kid.

fram40
08-16-2012, 10:12 PM
He says it all the time, he isn't transposing the words, that is what he says.

Hawk is the man. Once he dies, they should just use a soundboard to call the games.

I've got a friend who thinks Hawk isn;t at the games now. Stoney just hits the appropriate "Hawkism" button as needed.

I like Hawk. I think he is just letting his strong feelings for the Sox influence his calls more than ever. His "Stretch"es are just a deep hope that the ball will get out, rather than die on the warning track. Or short of the running track. Even when his head knows better

Lip Man 1
08-16-2012, 10:51 PM
MZH:

I've always equated 'upper tank' with a home run into an upper deck myself. Hawk used that term often at the original Comiskey Park, I can see where it would be confusing.

Lip

Brian26
08-16-2012, 11:26 PM
You're kidding, right?

He's been calling Chicago "the City Beautiful" for a while now.

I also discovered where he got that... That's the slogan for Orlando, FL, which happens to be where Harrelson lives in the off-season.

Hawk's creativity is lacking on that one.

http://images4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120409221714/orlandotcb/images/b/b3/Orlando-welcome-sign.jpg

Tragg
08-17-2012, 01:36 AM
One thing I've noticed for a few years is that, in his home run call, he no longer identifies the fielder who "looks up" by name. He now just says "he" looks up.
He also never put Flowers' homer on the board.

Harry Potter
08-17-2012, 01:38 AM
One thing I've noticed for a few years is that, in his home run call, he no longer identifies the fielder who "looks up" by name. He now just says "he" looks up.

Last Friday, "Reddick didn't mooooooooooooooooove" :cool:

PeteWard
08-17-2012, 04:24 AM
Flowers HR was a moonshot to the upper level of the stadium. What's so confusing?

What is upper tank? An idiom I am not aware of?

PeteWard
08-17-2012, 04:26 AM
MZH:

I've always equated 'upper tank' with a home run into an upper deck myself. Hawk used that term often at the original Comiskey Park, I can see where it would be confusing.

Lip

Ok got it now. I had never heard that term before and thought he was losing it.

Still can't stand him.

Nellie_Fox
08-18-2012, 01:16 AM
Ok got it now. I had never heard that term before and thought he was losing it.

Still can't stand him.Really? Hawk's been using that for years. Of course, in the new ballpark it never comes up; only on the road. In old Comiskey it was pretty common for him to say that.

SephClone89
08-18-2012, 05:10 AM
Really? Hawk's been using that for years. Of course, in the new ballpark it never comes up; only on the road. In old Comiskey it was pretty common for him to say that.

He says it at the Cell for foul balls.

SephClone89
08-18-2012, 05:11 AM
Last Friday, "Reddick didn't mooooooooooooooooove" :cool:

You mean REEEEEICKK...DUZZAMOOOO!

Nellie_Fox
08-19-2012, 01:19 AM
He says it at the Cell for foul balls.Yeah, you're right.

Quentin08
08-19-2012, 10:12 AM
I also discovered where he got that... That's the slogan for Orlando, FL, which happens to be where Harrelson lives in the off-season.

Hawk's creativity is lacking on that one.

http://images4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120409221714/orlandotcb/images/b/b3/Orlando-welcome-sign.jpg

I thought it was Coral Gables, Florida.. that's the current nickname according to Wikipedia. And their official website is

http://www.citybeautiful.net/


http://www.citybeautiful.net/ftp/home_rotation/1.jpg

oldcomiskey
08-20-2012, 10:24 PM
I don't really mind the Hawkisms, and I definitely like the homerism, but I can't stand Hawk's country-fried Southern accent. But, you gotta do what you gotta do, because as bad as Hawk can be sometimes, my god, Farmer and DJ on the radio are awful. Awful. I guess if I bought an HD radio I could just listen to the games on 95.5 HD2 in Spanish. :cool:

thats because hawk was born in Carolina--as a country fried southern man myself--I can tell you he sounds more than a Yankee then most do here in Dixie

KenBerryGrab
08-21-2012, 12:12 AM
He saw that Ibanez was handcuffed on the ball he hit that reached near the track.

keloms
08-21-2012, 05:53 AM
Does anyone know why Hawk regularly wears sunglasses in front of the camera? I can't remember the last time I saw him without sunglasses. Even during his appearance on Windy City Live he wore sunglasses in the studio. :cool:

It's probably out of habit now, but, the common reason is a trick for those that are nervous so you can look directly at the camera and not have to worry about looking like you're staring it down or eyes wandering all over the place.

DonnieDarko
08-21-2012, 07:58 AM
It's probably out of habit now, but, the common reason is a trick for those that are nervous so you can look directly at the camera and not have to worry about looking like you're staring it down or eyes wandering all over the place.

Or because he's loaded and wants to hide it from the camera. :tongue:

SephClone89
08-21-2012, 08:37 AM
It's probably out of habit now, but, the common reason is a trick for those that are nervous so you can look directly at the camera and not have to worry about looking like you're staring it down or eyes wandering all over the place.

I personally think that part of the telecast is the most awkward, in a subtle way. The way he folds his hands and does his narrative thing and it's painfully obvious he's never been trained in anything like this and just sounds awful. It's uncomfortable to me.

soxinem1
08-21-2012, 05:28 PM
One thing I've noticed for a few years is that, in his home run call, he no longer identifies the fielder who "looks up" by name. He now just says "he" looks up.
He also never put Flowers' homer on the board.

That's because Flowers HR wound up on Mars.

LITTLE NELL
08-22-2012, 03:57 PM
One thing I've noticed for a few years is that, in his home run call, he no longer identifies the fielder who "looks up" by name. He now just says "he" looks up.
He also never put Flowers' homer on the board.

I have one of those bottle openers that plays one of his HR calls (Jose Valentin) and Hawk uses ''He'' I bought it in 2004 so Hawk has used that phrase almost 9 years.
On his vision, last night in the game thread I mentioned that when the opponent hits a ball that might reach the stands his calls are perfect, he called Martins HR the minute it left the bat. I think he just gets excited just like us when a Sox player hits one that has a chance of going over the fence.

fram40
08-22-2012, 11:35 PM
Hawk said, "Ichiro looks up" on Rios' game winning home run tonight

Edit: But then he says, "Sox lead it 2 nothing" It was actually 2 - 1.

SI1020
08-23-2012, 09:36 AM
Hawk said, "Ichiro looks up" on Rios' game winning home run tonight

Edit: But then he says, "Sox lead it 2 nothing" It was actually 2 - 1. Dave O'Brien the bland, vanilla professional ESPN announcer made of couple of similar minor errors himself last night. I enjoyed the hell out of John Kruk. Not bland, not vanilla, not much of a voice, but what a character. Lots of interesting stories too, but of course none about Yaz.

palehosepub
08-23-2012, 01:42 PM
There is a great biographical article on Hawk Harrelson which is in the September edition of Chicago Magazine. I'm a big fan of Hawk, but even if you are not it's a nice well balance look at his career.

I would have loved to hung with Hawk for a night "back in the day" - he is really an interesting charachter.

guillensdisciple
08-23-2012, 01:49 PM
I don't know how one can dislike hawk. Guy loves his team, he knows EVERYTHING about the history of the sport, he is happy when the team does well and upset when they do poorly. I don't need a drone to take me through a game.

His vision, though, has been iffy. I notices that he has pulled back a lot of his calls and is missing on some of them. I hope, if he does have declining vision,he gets it fixed or retire.

SOXBOY
08-23-2012, 01:53 PM
Alot of fans I know hate Hawk but I can't understand why. When all is said and done Hawk is like most of us a die hard fan.

Harry Chappas
08-23-2012, 03:16 PM
Is it possible to not really like Hawk but admit that you'll miss him when he's gone? I think I'm in this camp. For better or for worse, he is synonymous with White Sox baseball. His histrionics over blown calls (real or imagined) gets tiresome as do his 'Hawkisms' but at least he is passionate. I have a hunch that we'll end up with some milquetoast replacement and we'll long for the days of a "colorful" announcer. Maybe I'm wrong.

Oh, and anecdotal evidences suggests that he is LOATHED by fans of other teams and I really couldn't care less.

SI1020
08-23-2012, 03:24 PM
I have a hunch that we'll end up with some milquetoast replacement and we'll long for the days of a "colorful" announcer. Maybe I'm wrong.
I doubt that you will be wrong.

Hitmen77
08-28-2012, 05:24 PM
Here's an article about Hawk:

http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/September-2012/Is-Chicago-Sox-Broadcaster-Hawk-Harrelson-One-of-the-All-Time-Greats/index.php?cparticle=1&siarticle=0#artanc

SephClone89
08-28-2012, 05:28 PM
Alot of fans I know hate Hawk but I can't understand why. When all is said and done Hawk is like most of us a die hard fan.

I hate this argument.