Wave him bye bye: O's voice Angel retires

Play-by-play man was in Baltimore's radio booth nearly two decades

February 15th, 2019

SARASOTA -- Wave him bye bye. A legendary voice of Orioles baseball is calling it a career.

Joe Angel, beloved play-by-plan man and voice of the Orioles' radio broadcasts for nearly two decades, announced his retirement this week. The decision caps a 41-year career in the booth for Angel, 71, a fixture for 19 seasons across two stints in Baltimore.

"You may have heard..after 42 years..the game has ended," Angel wrote in a tweet that, by Friday afternoon, had garnered more than 3,600 likes. "I wind up "IN THE WINNN COLUMN" Thank you Baltimore for the privilege, memories and Lovely Totals. I will miss you. I am now retired...and an #orioles fan forever. Hoping my greatest Oriole memory is yet to come. Luv u all"

A native of Bogota, Colombia, Angel didn't learn English until age nine, before he immigrated to the United States with his family as a teenager. The family eventually settled in the Bay Area, where his broadcasting career got its first break. As a 29-year-old, Angel was hired to call Giants games in the late '70s. He also dabbled in Stanford University football and San Francisco University basketball before shifting his focus strictly to baseball in the mid-'80s.

Angel ingratiated himself to fans across America over the next three decades, enjoying stints with the Twins (1984-86), Orioles (1988-90, '92), Yankees (1991) and Marlins (1993-2000) before returning to Baltimore in 2004. Angel's 15-year second tenure with the Orioles was his longest anywhere.

"Congrats @WaveItByeBye on your retirement," Jim Hunter, Angel's longtime on-air partner, tweeted. "Joe's the best of the best & an outstanding partner on air. Our broadcast family is in fact a family. We spend so much time together. @tinytimiones & I will be there when Joe is enshrined in Cooperstown. God Bless partner."

Angel also worked for ESPN from 2000-02, spent three years on the Marlins' television broadcast, and called two World Series. Among other big moments, he was behind the mic for Edgar Renteria's walk-off single in Game 7 of the 1997 Fall Classic. Angel stumbled across his famous "in the win column" call in 1988, when the Orioles snapped their record 21-game losing streak. It became one of his signature calls, rehashed every time the Orioles closed out a victory.

"Gonna miss you, Joe," Ravens broadcaster Gerry Sandusky wrote in a congratulatory tweet. "You're a great listen and you made baseball fun in good times and bad times."

Angel's retirement marks the second major departure from the Orioles' radio booth in recent years, after Fred Manfra retired in 2017. The club has not announced plans to replace Angel, but is expected to soon. The Orioles Radio Network is scheduled to broadcast 13 Grapefruit League games beginning with Feb. 23's spring opener vs. Minnesota.