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July 25, 2014

The View from the Loge Level

Ode to Joe

by Daron Sutton


For five and a half seasons, it was a true blessing and gift to be able to call major-league baseball games several times a month with one of the legendary voices of several generations, Joe Garagiola. Spending those unforgettable years with Joe, it was amazing how one of the game's greatest personalities of all-time still maintained a humility that allowed him to serve as a mentor and friend to everyone he encountered. This weekend in Cooperstown, Joe will be honored the third recipient of the Buck O'Neil Lifetime Achievement Award, a fitting accolade at the very minimum.

Joe was the joy woven throughout a baseball game: an interview with John Lennon, that cup of coffee shared with the Today Show, a page turning book he authored or a tireless battle against smokeless tobacco. Our rides to and from the ballpark together were nothing short of inspirational. Joe said goodbye to the microphone several years back, sharper and more talented than contemporaries who were 30 years younger. He will always be one of the game's great and grounded ambassadors.

In the not-so-distant past Joe and his amazing wife Audrey opened their home to me. As we toured their house, it was an honor to share U.S., television, broadcasting and baseball history with Joe in picture and scrapbook form. As we sat in his study, we documented a conversation about his life and all the journeys he has traveled. What follow are a few of the memories.

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Related Content:  Hall Of Fame,  Cooperstown,  Probability

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Minor League Update: G... (07/25)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article The View from the Loge... (07/18)
Next Column >>
The View from the Loge... (08/01)
Next Article >>
Premium Article What You Need to Know:... (07/25)

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