Broadcaster Andersen to cut back travel in '18

September 13th, 2017
Phillies radio broadcaster Larry Andersen has been in the booth for nearly 20 seasons, and would like to spend more time with his family during the summer. Copyright © 2017 The Phillies/Miles KennedyMiles Kennedy

PHILADELPHIA -- Listening to Larry Andersen and Scott Franzke on the radio has been a staple for Phillies fans since 2007.

But the popular broadcast team will be together less frequently next year, as Andersen is reducing his travel schedule. It remains to be seen how many games he will miss on the road, but it is possible he broadcasts only games at Citizens Bank Park.

"It'll be the first time I'll have significant time off in the summer in 48 years," Andersen, 64, said shortly before Wednesday night's game against the Marlins at Citizens Bank Park. "I'm just really getting tired of the travel. More than anything, I catch myself letting little things bother me on the road, even the game. You want to be home. Honestly, I find myself getting grumpy and I don't want to do that. It's not fair to the fans. It's not fair to the organization. I don't like being that way. It's my form of taking a chill pill, really."

The Phillies first learned of Andersen's wishes last year, so this has not come as a surprise. In fact, it is why Doug Glanville, J.C. Romero, Kevin Stocker and Kevin Jordan each have worked with Franzke during different series this season. They want to see how they like the job and how they sound with Franzke.

It is unclear if the Phillies will hire one of the four former Phillies they tried out this season, use a combination of them, or take a look at somebody else that hasn't been in the booth. Phillies' TV analyst Ben Davis also has worked with Franzke in the booth.

Of course, first they must finalize Andersen's schedule.

"He's told us he's going to cut back a decent amount next year," Phillies executive vice president Dave Buck said. "We're trying to figure out the details now."

Andersen's schedule always could change again following 2018. Both sides can see how it works and adjust if necessary.

But it certainly will be different for Phillies fans, who enjoy the rapport of Andersen and Franzke in the booth.

"It's an honor," Andersen said. "The response that the fans have had to Scott and I has just been fantastic. I hope that this doesn't take anything away from that."

So what will Andersen do with his extra free time?

"I think my wife [Kristi] has watched enough 'Fixer Upper' over the last two years that I don't think I'll get bored," Andersen said, laughing. "I'm pretty sure she'll have some projects for me. But we'll spend some time in Clearwater, Fla., and probably out on the Oregon coast, where I can see the kids more. I want to be able to do that before I'm six feet under."

Threshers helping out 

The Phillies' Florida operations staff in Clearwater, including the city of Clearwater, is feeding approximately 300 city employees and emergency volunteers lunch on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at Spectrum Field.

The Phillies had the food and drinks, so they opened their doors to aid in the recovery efforts following Hurricane Irma. About half of Pinellas County remains without power.