One Radio World staffer read this announcement and commented: “Only Major League Baseball could come up with a contest as complicated as selecting the Ford C. Frick Award.” Given to a noted baseball broadcaster each year, the Frick selection process, he thought, “is only slightly less confusing than the Infield Fly Rule and barely less judgmental than the Balk Rule.”
You decide. It’s a big deal for sports broadcasters regardless. Starting Monday, Aug. 20 and running through Sept. 7, baseball fans can visit the Baseball Hall of Fame’s Facebook page and vote for their favorite baseball broadcaster. Broadcaster in this case is defined as a person (active or retired) who has been broadcasting or broadcast at least 10 consecutive years for a team or network. It is estimated that some 220 living broadcasters fit the criteria.
That process is designed to provide a list of 40 names from which a second round of voting, Sept. 10 through Oct. 5, will whittle down to three names. That trio will be added to a list of seven other candidates determined by a Hall of Fame committee on Oct. 9.
Those 10 will be handed over to a 21-member committee composed of former Frick winners and a few baseball historians and media members. The list of former Frick winners is impressive — Scully, Uecker, Garagiola, Kubek, Elston, Brennaman, McCarver, etc.
The eventual winner of the 2013 Ford C. Frick Award will be announced at MLB’s annual winter meeting in Nashville, early December. MLB says last year, Tom Cheek, Jacques Doucet and Mike Shannon earned spots on the final ballot via fan voting.
(Unnecessarily complex? Comment below. But don’t get us started on how All-Stars are picked, or how World Series home field advantage is determined. And about the DH …)