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Hawk Harrelson goes crazy

May 30, 2012, 5:02 PM EDT

In today’s Rays-White Sox game, A.J. Pierzynski got plunked. Later, be it by coincidence or not, Jose Quintana threw one at Ben Zobrist and was immediately ejected by umpire Mark Wegner. Then White Sox announcer Hawk Harrelson went crazy:

UPDATE: MLB pulled the You Tube video, but they have it over at, with complete Hawk awesomeness.

Hey, I’m just as critical of the umps as anyone, but perhaps Mr. Harrelson should get a bit of perspective. And even though homerism has been Harrelson’s shtick for years — he always says “we” when referring to the White Sox and calls the opposition “the bad guys” — this is a bit beyond the pale, no?

I mean, at least pretend to not be the propaganda arm of the team, OK?  Or at least pretend not to be 12 years-old.

(link via Awful Announcing)

  1. bronxbomber213 - May 30, 2012 at 5:06 PM

    hahahaha what a clown

  2. js20011041 - May 30, 2012 at 5:07 PM

    Stay classy Hawk. Any video of Pierzynski’s slide? I missed it, but apparently he slid into a base with his spikes up and that’s what prompted him to be hit.

    • hammyofdoom - May 30, 2012 at 5:30 PM

      Unfortunately I don’t have the video handy but I DID see it. It was blatantly bad, with his foot totally sliding over the top of the bag, not touching, in order to spike the leg of the short stop on the other side of the bag. Was a pretty classic AJ move

  3. scareduck - May 30, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    “Bad guys” and “good guys” have long been a staple of Hawk’s announcing. This locution is only one reason why he is, nonpareil, the worst game caller in baseball.

    • Ben - May 30, 2012 at 5:33 PM

      The only other context I can remember seeing nonpareil in is Ulysses. Well done.

      • Joe - May 30, 2012 at 6:52 PM

        Have you never partaken of the glorious chocolate/sugar combo that is the nonpareil candy?

      • Utley's Hair - May 30, 2012 at 7:03 PM

        Nonpareils are awesome, both the chocolate ones and the mint ones.

    • 4d3fect - May 30, 2012 at 8:47 PM

      Even considering the Wonder Dog?

  4. bstras2809 - May 30, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    White Sox are a joke and this dude is an idiot.

    • jdd428 - May 30, 2012 at 5:47 PM

      Harrelson may indeed be an idiot. But the White Sox are not a joke – hottest team in the league right now.

  5. bloodysock - May 30, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    Hawk is crazy. This is nothing new (although it’s a pretty good rant, even for him).

  6. marshmallowsnake - May 30, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    Worst play by play guy ever…and you can PUT IT ON THE BOARD. YES!

    Seriously, his commentary for the final out of a perfect game was, “ALEXI!!!!!!!!!!!! YES!!!!!!!!”


  7. WhenMattStairsIsKing - May 30, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    Hawk is the #1 reason why I don’t watch Sox games.

  8. ja4ed - May 30, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Can anyone verify that when Alejandro De Aza was hit in the leg on a pick off play at first, that Hawk thought it was intentional?

    • ezthinking - May 30, 2012 at 5:42 PM

      Pretty sure Pedro Gomez hasn’t denied ordering the plunking.

  9. mybrunoblog - May 30, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    Most home team announcers are big homers. We are waaaay past the days of the independent voice. I think most teams even expect their guys to be homers.
    I grew up listening to Rizutto and White do Yankee games so I am used to it and I even sort of like it.

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - May 30, 2012 at 5:36 PM

      Don Orsillo and Buck Martinez are two of the only broadcasters that can call a decent game, and I think the fact that they get to do playoff games for TBS backs that. Obviously they’re rooting for their team but they never display this kind of blatant homerism.

      • normcash - May 30, 2012 at 6:46 PM

        Mario Impemba and Rod Allen do a good job on Tigers games–you know they’re for the Tigers, but are very even-handed.

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - May 30, 2012 at 7:01 PM

        True. I like the Baltimore guys as well.

  10. Stacey - May 30, 2012 at 5:18 PM


  11. Lukehart80 - May 30, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    “They have got to start making guys be accountable.”

    Hawk had better hope they don’t, or he’ll be the first one gone.

    • jdd428 - May 30, 2012 at 5:51 PM

      How is that? What Harrelson does has no impact on the game itself and there’s nothing to him accountable for aside from homerism, which as we’ve already discussed is rampant among announcers today.

      I didn’t see the play and I am not saying this is the case in this instance, but there does need to be some public accountability for umpires who make egregious errors or oversteps. I’m sure Jim Leyland agrees.

      • normcash - May 30, 2012 at 6:50 PM

        The umps are accountable…post-season, All Star work, etc. depends on their ratings during the season—and some are not retained. It isn’t announced publically during the year for the very good reason that, if it were, they couldn’t do their jobs…That ump
        who got suspended a few weeks ago was a rare exception…

      • Lukehart80 - May 30, 2012 at 6:53 PM

        I agree with you that umps ought to be accountable, though Hawk (not surprisingly) wildly overreacted to what happened today.

        That said, everyone who is employed has something to be accountable for, and Harrelson is terrible at his job. I suppose people are used to what they’re used to, and White Sox fans are used to Harrelson, but you learn nothing from listening to him announce a game, he pouts when things aren’t going well, oftentimes remaining silent for minutes at a time, his homerism goes beyond cheering for the team to being completely blinded to what is going on, and he throws fits like this afternoon’s.

        I live in Chicago, and as an Indians fan I’m more drawn to the American League, so I watch a lot of Sox games, but I almost always have to mute them after an inning or so, because I simply cannot enjoy the game if I’m having to listen to Harrelson.

      • Joe - May 30, 2012 at 6:54 PM

        Yeah, when people say “the umpires need to be held accountable,” what they mean is “I want this umpire punished for making a call with which I disagree.”

      • paperlions - May 30, 2012 at 7:54 PM

        Actually, what people mean when they say they want umps held accountable is that they shouldn’t be able to suck at their job year after year and still have it. There are at least 1/2 dozen umpires that are horrible year after year and have no business being a ML umpire…but everyone has to put up with their ineptitude and arrogant attitude year after year….you can read “yeah, I suck at my job…so what? I’m going to kick you out of the game and still be blowing calls while your in the showers” on Joe West’s face on a regular basis.

  12. bgould74 - May 30, 2012 at 5:21 PM

    The Rays actions “reek of intent”. Apparently they are the only team allowed to hit batters for actions they don’t like.

    • drewmunny - May 30, 2012 at 5:32 PM

      Seems to be that way, doesn’t it? Wait for it, any time now we’ll be hearing from the Royal Hipster himself (Maddon) –

      “Did I say that strongly enough? Did I make my point?”

      Yes, Joe, you made your point. As long as YOUR tem is throwing behind, hey, it’s all good.

    • brokenduck - May 30, 2012 at 7:32 PM

      According to Maddon’s account, the Rays have been hit or thrown at intentionally 1,290,216 times. The innocent Rays have yet to throw at anyone, but if they did hit someone, it was clearly justified and the right way to play the game.

  13. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - May 30, 2012 at 5:23 PM

    He makes Suzyn Waldman sound like Vin Scully.

  14. kiwicricket - May 30, 2012 at 5:25 PM

  15. randygnyc - May 30, 2012 at 5:27 PM

    I’ll sometimes, depending on the opponent, watch the sox feed on MLB tv. The past couple of years, I’ve found the Hawk to be really insufferable. I get partisanship. But he’s just too way over the top. But if sox fans like him, they can have him. And in his case, he’s right in saying “we”. He does work for the sox, right?

  16. mississippimusicman - May 30, 2012 at 5:31 PM

    Way to go, MLBAM. These guys are on top of things, making sure anything that makes a team, the umps, or MLB look bad gets disappeared. I understand the copyright claim, but if they want to be impartial, they should post a clip on

  17. sizzzle - May 30, 2012 at 5:32 PM

    The Rays hit two White Sox batters, Wegner didn’t warn anyone, and then tossed Quintero for not even actually hitting Ben Zobrist? Hawk was right to be mad, all of that was ridiculous. Hawk is an over-the-top guy, of course he was going to react like that.

    I don’t care if you don’t like Hawk’s little “Hawk-isms,” but you can’t tell me that you would rather listen to an announcer who doesn’t seem to care about the team he’s announcing for. Hawk cares about his White Sox, and it’s ridiculous for people to fault him for that.

    • IdahoMariner - May 30, 2012 at 5:36 PM

      I absolutely would rather listen to an announcer who doesn’t sound like an idiot.

    • chuckj1234 - May 30, 2012 at 5:41 PM

      Yes. I agree.

    • snowbirdgothic - May 30, 2012 at 6:13 PM

      Hawk cares about his White Sox the way Glenn Close cared about Michael Douglas in Fatal Attraction.

  18. IdahoMariner - May 30, 2012 at 5:32 PM

    huh. glad I am not a white sox fan. my five year old daughter and i listen to the Mariners’ broadcasts together…I have yet to have anything unusual to explain or language that I have to tell her to ignore, or behavior that I have to tell her not to emultae. But that guy would be number one on my example of “sweetheart, don’t marry guys that sound like this — odds are overwhelming he’s a jackass” list. Okay, not number one. Number one (of the baseball-related guys) on the list would be McCourt (money doesn’t excuse epic, lawless, jack-assery), followed in no particular order by AJ Pierziamnotgonnabothertolearntospellthisjackassesname; Luke Scott; former no 1 pick now a raging mess (alcoholism doesn’t compel you to drive, it compels you to drink, please stop trying to take innocent people down with you) Matt Bush; Roger Clemens (not for the steroids, for the rage and righteousness (don’t throw a broken bat at the batter, he didn’t break it on purpose, jackass, it’s not all about you))….there’s more, but i have already gone on too long….
    apparently my resistance to jackasses is very low today.

    • IdahoMariner - May 30, 2012 at 5:35 PM

      emulate. not emultae. where are you when i need you, autocorrect!?!
      also, I do have to tell my daughter not to emulate Eric Wedge’s approach to lineup construction, but that’s not about the broadcast so much as the completely insane degree to which Eric Wedge believes in batter-to-pitcher matchups.

  19. redux23 - May 30, 2012 at 6:03 PM


  20. royalsfaninfargo - May 30, 2012 at 6:32 PM

    Hawk is the only color guy in the major leagues who is worse than Rex Hudler.

    • normcash - May 30, 2012 at 6:55 PM

      Except the Hawk is sometimes entertaining…Hudler is just annoying—what on earth
      were the Royals thinking????

    • The Rabbit - May 30, 2012 at 7:03 PM

      It’s a matter of personal taste.
      They both suck and make me want to shoot my TV, but I did manage to make it through the entire White Sox game this afternoon. I thought the Hawk outburst was hilarious.
      10 seconds of Rex Hudler and I am desperately searching for another game to watch.
      Norm…I ask myself the same question all the time.

  21. djpostl - May 30, 2012 at 10:05 PM

    Never mind the fact that piece of shit Pierzynski clearly spiked Zobrist intentionally last night while missing the bag completely. Damn thing should have been in his ear hole.

  22. larryboodry - May 30, 2012 at 11:16 PM

    Put him in a ward, yesssss!!!!!

  23. rgledz - May 31, 2012 at 12:02 AM

    First of all, let’s get one thing clear……the worst play by play guy is Joe Buck and it’s not even close. He’s as worthless and pompous as it gets and the only reason he has his job is bea0cause his father is one of the greatest ever. secondly, I’m a Twins fan and I hate the Sox, but Hawk is entertaining and I give him props from time to time. To the guy that commented on Hawk and ripped him for just saying ” Alexi……yes!” on the no hitter, I’d rather have a play by play guy let the game do the talking instead of the scripted garbage that most of these guys throw against the wall. Sometimes less is more.

    • kopy - May 31, 2012 at 1:06 AM

      Less can be more, but that wasn’t the full quote, which is way worse:

      “ALEXI… YES! YES! YES! YES! YES! YES!! ….. HISTORY!!!”

  24. caliscooter - May 31, 2012 at 1:03 AM

    Love the Hawk. What is wrong with him being a ‘homer’ if he is the lead announcer for the White Sox network? Can of corn, guys.

  25. Detroit Michael - May 31, 2012 at 1:13 AM

    If there was accountability, Harrelson’s boss would make him read Major League Baseball Rule 8.02(d) on the air tomorrow and then admit that the umpire did know more about baseball than Harrelson did in this instance.

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