The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum announced on Friday the eight finalists for the 2020 Ford C. Frick Award, an honor presented annually for excellence in baseball broadcasting.
This year's candidates are Joe Castiglione, Jacques Doucet, Tom Hamilton, Ken Harrelson, Pat Hughes, Ned Martin, Mike Shannon and Dewayne Staats. The winner, who will be honored during Hall of Fame Weekend in July in Cooperstown, will be revealed on Dec. 11 at the Winter Meetings in San Diego.
• Castiglione has spent 40 years calling big league games, the last 37 as the Red Sox’s lead radio voice.
• Doucet spent 33 years broadcasting for the Expos as the play-by-play radio voice on their French network (1969-2004), and he returned to the booth in 2012 as the Blue Jays’ French-speaking TV voice.
• Hamilton has called Indians games on radio for 30 seasons, including the team’s three World Series appearances in that span.
• Harrelson has brought a passionate voice to the air for 42 years for the Red Sox, Yankees and White Sox, including the last 28 years in Chicago.
• Hughes has called MLB games for 37 seasons, starting with the Twins in 1983 before working Brewers games from 1984-95 and serving as the Cubs’ radio voice for the last 24 seasons.
• Martin worked as the Red Sox’s radio and television voice from 1961-92, covering the 1975 World Series for NBC-TV.
• Shannon called Cardinals games for 42 years from 1972-2018 following a nine-year playing career with the Redbirds.
• Staats has called big league games for 43 years, including the last 22 as the voice of the Rays on television.
Final voting will be conducted by a committee comprised of the 11 living Frick Award recipients, as well as four broadcast historians/columnists. The previous Frick honorees on the electorate include Marty Brennaman, Bob Costas, Jaime Jarrín, Tony Kubek, Denny Matthews, Tim McCarver, Jon Miller, Eric Nadel, Vin Scully, Bob Uecker and Dave Van Horne. They will be joined by historians David J. Halberstam, Ted Patterson and Curt Smith, and Barry Horn (formerly of the Dallas Morning News).
Both active and retired broadcasters are eligible for the honor, though candidates must have at least 10 years of continuous Major League broadcast service with either a team, network or combination of both. More than 200 broadcasters met those requirements this year, though the eight finalists were selected based on the following criteria: “Commitment to excellence, quality of broadcasting abilities, reverence within the game, popularity with fans and recognition by peers.”
Though the Frick Award is given out annually, the potential recipient group rotates on a three-year basis. This year's candidates are part of the "Current Major League Markets" cycle of the Frick Award, recognizing team-specific announcers. Next year, the Frick Award will honor "National Voices" (broadcasters whose contributions came on a national level), while the 2022 version will focus on "Broadcasting Beginnings" (early team voices and pioneers of baseball broadcasting).