BOSTON -- As Ken "Hawk" Harrelson completes his 33rd season in the White Sox television booth, he thinks about potentially visiting opposing ballparks for the final time as the team's colorful play-by-play voice.Harrelson will return for a final season in 2018, working primarily Sunday home games amid a 20-game schedule.
BOSTON -- As Ken "Hawk" Harrelson completes his 33rd season in the White Sox television booth, he thinks about potentially visiting opposing ballparks for the final time as the team's colorful play-by-play voice.
Harrelson will return for a final season in 2018, working primarily Sunday home games amid a 20-game schedule. If some road games are involved, Harrelson certainly would choose Boston and Fenway Park for the special meaning it has to him.
Boston became Harrelson's first broadcasting stop in 1975, before he joined the White Sox in '81. He also played parts of three seasons with the Red Sox, finishing third in the '68 American League Most Valuable Player Award voting and being part of the '67 World Series team losing to the Cardinals in seven games and celebrating a 50th anniversary this season.
"It just doesn't seem like it was that long ago. It seems like it was a year ago. Fifty years coming up," Harrelson said. "Every time I come here, the first thing I do on the first day is walk down and then walk up on the ramp there and look at right field.
"Then I get up to the booth and home plate and a lot of things go through my mind. When I ever think about Boston and the Red Sox, it's always [Carl] Yastrzemski and [Jim] Lonborg. Those two guys, that was the renaissance of baseball in New England in 1967."
Where road games in '18 are concerned, Hawk said "we're going to play it by ear." He made it clear Wrigley Field will not be one of those choices, as he's not a fan of their broadcast facilities. But Fenway Park is a different story.
"If I do make a trip it would certainly be Boston," Harrelson said. "In my playing career, playing in the All-Star Game, the World Series, that certainly supersedes anything else I ever did in my life.
"When I think now, because I'm a White Sox guy now, and outside of the Cubs, believe it or not, I would rather beat the Red Sox more than anybody. I would rather beat the Cubs more than anybody, so that definitely stamps me as a White Sox guy. But then when it's over, when the Red Sox won it in '04, I was so happy. I cried."
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.