When I thumb through my cards and come across Leo Gomez, in my mind I hear Jon Miller's stentorian bass announcing, "LAY-o Gomez". It sounded a little ridiculous, but it just rolled so fluidly off of his tongue...he made it work. My formative years as a baseball fan were spent listening to the avuncular, rotund Miller on WBAL. If I had known that he would be walking out the door after the 1996 season, bound for San Francisco, I might have listened more often and more closely. Instead, I have to settle for hearing him work the mic once a week - Sunday nights on ESPN. Usually that means that I also have to choke on the insipid burbling of Joe Morgan. But that's the kind of risk that I'm willing to take to listen to Jon Miller.
Today, Jon was selected as this year's recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award for his achievements in baseball broadcasting. On July 25, he will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. He will join several golden-throated greats who have previously received the honor, including the late, great Chuck Thompson, one of his former partners at WBAL. I can't think of anyone more deserving, and I can't wait to hear his speech.