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John Sterling's Top Home Run Calls
I grew up listening to John Sterling. Having listened to him since birth, none of his idiosyncrasies - idiosyncrasies that other fans hate - bother me. I'm immune. He's got faults. But isn't the broadcaster's job to entertain us? To improve the game? No one likes it when Sterling says, "It is high, it is far, it is...caught at the warning track by Jones." That's brutal. Of course it's always a tremendous letdown when he misreads a play. At the same time, he's got a hell of a voice, and there's a reason the Yanks stick with that booth and keep him around.
Many of John Sterling's home run calls are unmemorable, nay, God awful. I was never a fan of "Jorgie juiced one!" for Jorge Posada. Jeter's doesn't quite make this list, "El capitan!" It's just not super catchy or clever, and Jeter didn't hit enough home runs to hear the call often anyway. It'd be easy to write an article trashing Sterling. I'm not gonna do that. I'm going to celebrate one of the flashiest, smoothest voiced, cowboy'n play-by-play men in the sports, and this article is going to breakdown his greatest gift; the facet of his broadcasting game that's the best in all of baseball.
Some good calls that didn't make the cut
“He is Jolly Old St. Nick! Nick is positively Swishalicious!”
"Oh Curtis, you're something sort of Grandish! Oh the Grandy man caaan! (sung)."
"Gardy goes yardy!"
"A thrilla from Godzilla. The sayonara kid does it again."
"He is the Toddfather. In Todd we trust."
"Gary is scary!"
"Aaron is judge and jury, and this is judgement day."
"Hicks hits one into the sticks. Aaron hammers one!"
"Downtown goes Frazier! That Fraizah will amaze ya!"
"Bye bye, Birdie! Here he is, the Birdman of New York."
"Gregorius has Yankees fans uproarious! Yes in-Didi!"
"Jacoby Ellsburies it! A jack by Jacoby!"
Hideki Matsui - "A thrilla from Godzilla. The sayonara kid does it again." Everyone loved Matsui, and this call isn't bad.
Clint Frazier - It's a bit too obvious, and he hasn't been around long enough yet to make the list.
Didi Gregorious - This call is growing on me more every day.
Gary Sanchez - I'm a big fan of "Gary is scary."
Brett Gardner - "Gardy goes yardy," is great.
Todd Frazier - It's a good call, but predictable.
Curtis Granderson - The Grandy Man call was the last one out on the list. It's the 6th best call.
"Robbie Cano, dontcha know!"
- Robinson Cano
Robinson Cano is a Mariner now, but that doesn't mean he didn't have a good home run call back in his days as a Yank. This one is simple, and not really a play on anything, but it's simplicity is what makes it great. Sterling haters can't get too mad Robbie's call, since it's not really a play on anything, it's just a rhyme. "Robbie Cano, dontcha know!" isn't cringe worthy, even though it might not be terribly creative. Sterling tends to give the Yankees best players some of the simplest calls, and this is a perfect example of that. Robby hit plenty of home runs as a Yankee, so we got to hear this one quite often, unlike a couple of other names on this list.
"It's an A-Bomb, from A-Rod!"
- Alex Rodriguez
One of the best known Sterling catchphrases, this one belongs here even if A-Rod is a scumbag. It's a great, straightforward, catchy call. Sterling critics probably would label this call the least offensive of them all. It's also the most exciting of Sterling's calls, because of it's lack of silliness. Sterling fans probably wouldn't have this one as their favorite, but if someone was disparaging Sterling in front of their face, this is the one they would be most likely to bring up in Sterling's defense.
"Mark sends a Tex message [into the seats in right]. You're on the mark, Teixeira!"
- Mark Teixeira
Many people passionately despise this call, and even I didn't like this one at first, but Tex played for the Yanks long enough that it grew on me. It's probably the dumbest one on this list, but as a Sterling fan, it's a classic. What's great is that when Teixeira hit a no doubter Sterling would say, "It is high, it is far, it is gone! Mark Teixeira sends a Tex message into the seats in right! You're on the Mark, Teixeira, and the Yankees take a 2-1 lead." He'll doctor it a bit, he's flexible here.
"You can always bank on Chase. Headley is deadly."
- Chase Headley
Look, I'm sure he's a nice guy, but Headley's home run call was infinitely more enjoyable than his on-field performance as a Yank. Yeah, it's kinda dumb, and yes, it's a rhyme, but as puns go, this one is pretty good. Unfortunately, Headley didn't hit many big home runs as a Yank, but that's not Sterling's fault. Honestly, I wish a guy who hit 30+ home runs a year had a call like this, instead of Headley, so that it wouldn't be such a rare call to hear.
"The Melkman delivers. That's the Melky way."
- Melky Cabrera
Ah, the good ol' days, when Melky Cabrera played center field for the Yankees. It seems like it was so long ago now. Melky has since played for five teams, and been caught and suspended for steroid use. Still, back when he was a Yankee, he had the best home run call of them all. He maxed out at 13 home runs in his best season as a Yankee, so hearing Sterling call a Melky home run was always an absolute pleasure, and a rare treat.
- Ranking John Sterling’s New Catchphrases -- NYMag
A new season means lots of new crazy home-run calls.
Favorite Home Run Call
What's your favorite John Sterling Home Run Call?
I couldn't find a definitive source for each type of Sterling call unfortunately, but if you want to hear some entertaining home run calls, just tune in to Sterling calling a Yankee game. Yes, I know, it may be painful to listen to at first, and you might find yourself wincing at Suzyn Waldman's voice, but stick with it, and he'll grow on you.