Is that Howard Cosell or Tom Hamilton?
Most announcers probably hope for a chance to recapture the magic of Cosell’s legendary “Down goes Frazier” call during George Foreman’s victory over Joe Frazier to earn the heavyweight boxing title in 1973, but few get the chance.
When White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson and Guardians third baseman Jose Ramirez started swinging their fists on Saturday night in a wild bench-clearing brawl, Hamilton, the Guardians’ radio man, was more than ready.
“Now Josey and Anderson square off! They’re fighting!” Hamilton said as the two squared off. “They’re swinging! Down goes Anderson! Down goes Anderson!
“Ramírez went in with a head-first slide. Josey never gets upset about anything. They came up chewing. Anderson squared off. Josey decked him!”
Hamilton joined the team’s radio booth in 1990 and was a finalist this year for the Hall of Fame’s Ford C. Frick Award, which has been given annually since 1978 to a broadcaster for “major contributions to baseball.”
“I think I’m getting way too much recognition,” he told The Athletic on Sunday.
His “Down goes Anderson” call is already reaching near-legendary status – one fan showed up to Sunday’s game sporting a shirt with the mantra.
The fracas started after Ramirez slid headfirst into Anderson when he slapped an RBI double in the fifth inning.
When Anderson and Ramirez began jawing, the Chicago shortstop dropped his glove, squared up and threw a couple punches before Ramirez dropped him with a right hook to the chin.
“It’s not funny,” Guardians manager Terry Francona said, “but when I came in (after being ejected), I’m listening to Hammy. It’s hard not to chuckle.”
Neither player suited up for Sunday’s game and disciplinary action is expected to come from the brawl.
“There is not a better teammate in all of sports than José, and now you know why he’s revered,” Hamilton said to The Athletic. “That was all about sticking up for his teammates.”