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Ron Santo, Chicago Legend…   2 comments


On the day of one of the very first Bulls games of this season, I realized after I had already arrived at work that I would not be home in time to catch the beginning of the game.  No problem, I thought, I will just call my wife and have her DVR it for me.  I made the call, she set the DVR, and all was well.  When I sat down to start the game recording I was hit with a tough realization – my wife had DVR’d the game on ESPN and not WCIU.  To those of you that do not realize what this means, I was unable to watch the game with hometown announcers Neil Funk and Stacey King.  Instead, I was forced to watch the game listening to national broadcasters who could care less about Chicago sports.  I told my wife about this and she didn’t understand why I would care about what announcers are covering the game.

I immediately told her about Ron Santo and it all seemed to make sense.

Due to the long hours of my job, over the past three years I have listened to countless Cubs games on the radio.  Ron Santo was the quintessential “homer” commentator and he refused to care what others thought of it.  Listening to Ron and his “YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!”, “ALLLLL RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHT!!”, and “OHHH NOOOOOOOO!!” brought me to the ballpark in a seat next to a fan I could always count on.  By no means was Ron the best commentator out there.  He will never be accused of giving listeners too many breakdowns of upcoming pitch possibilities or strategies; however, he gave us all something more important – heart.  Ron wore his heart on his sleeve and, no matter when you tuned into WGN 720, you always knew the state of the game just by the tone of Ron’s voice.  He loved the Chicago Cubs and the fans with every fiber of his being and he gave every fan who listened to him a true sense of companionship through each high or low.  We never went through anything alone, we always had Ron.

Ron’s on the field accomplishments speak for themselves.  I am not writing this as a petition to have him inducted into the Hall of Fame because at this point I think that induction would be useless and, quite frankly, an insult to Ron.  Ron Santo has always been a Hall of Famer to Cubs fans.  Plaque or no plaque, that will never change.

The Chicago sports community lost a legend and friend today.  In an era where the game of baseball has been tainted with innumerable allegations of performance enhancing drugs and Senate investigative committees, there was something pure and innocent about sitting back and listening to the Cubbies with your buddies Ron and Pat.  Thanks for all the memories, Ron.  Although we won’t be able to hear you when the Cubbies finally win it all, me and each and every member of Cubs nation will have you in our hearts.

Posted December 3, 2010 by joejack7500 in Chicago Cubs, Life, MLB, Sports

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