San Francisco Giants

San Francisco Giants

Meulens can communicate to Yankees 5 languages

FILE - In this Aug. 28, 2017, file photo, San Francisco Giants hitting coach Hensley Meulens takes in batting practice before the baseball game against the San Diego Padres in San Diego. Meulens is the third candidate to interview for New York Yankees manager after Rob Thomson and Eric Wedge. A former outfielder who spent five of his seven major league seasons with the Yankees, the 50-year-old has been a coach with the San Francisco Giants for the last 8 seasons and was shifted last month from hitting coach to bench coach. (AP Photo/Orlando Ramirez, File)

Yankees Owner Hal Steinbrenner: Joe Girardi Was Out Even if Yankees Won World Series

New York Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner said Wednesday he agrees with general manager Brian Cashman's decision to fire manager Joe Girardi last month and that the longtime manager would have been fired even if the Yankees won the World Series.

Although Girardi led a young Yankees team to the playoffs and past the No. 1 seed Cleveland Indians in the ALDS, his contract was not renewed three weeks ago after 10 seasons with the team.

Steinbrenner spoke to reporters for the first time since the firing and said the decision was a long time coming.

"This was not a decision we took lightly, and not a decision that had to do with 2-3 weeks. It had to do with 2-3 years, and observing things and hearing things,'' Steinbrenner told reporters at the MLB general managers meetings, according to ESPN. "We felt it was time to move in a different direction."

"As I told Cash, I wasn't following his recommendation: I agreed with it. He and I have had these discussions for a considerable length of time, over and over again. This isn't something we just decided we wanted to sit down and do at the end of the season. We've had a lot of discussions through the years.''

Cashman cited Girardi's issues with connectivity and communication with players as reason for the change. Steinbrenner agreed with the sentiment and indicated that even if the Yankees won the World Series, Girardi's failures may have still led to a change.

The Yankees Make A Cold, Calculating Decision By Refusing To Retain Joe Girardi

"I'm sure there would have been more pressure,'' Steinbrenner said. "It would have been maybe a more difficult decision to make. But I would have made it because I felt like that was best for the organization moving forward."

In his 10 years as manager, Girardi won one World Series and made the playoffs six times. Girardi finishes his 10 years with the Yankees with a 910–710 record. He has the sixth-most wins in Yankees history. In his 10 years as manager, he posted a .562 winning percentage, which is the best in that time. The Yankees never posted a record below. 500 and finished the 2017 regular season with a 91–71 record.

San Francisco Giants coach Hensley Meulens, Los Angeles Dodgers coach Chris Woodward, former Yankee Aaron Boone, former Cleveland and Seattle manager Eric Wedge and Yankees bench coach Rob Thomson are among the candidates under consideration for the Yankees' manager position.

Steinbrenner told reporters he has no timetable for the search and is "not rushing" Cahsman.

"I think you have to consider that you have a younger team, and maybe a different type of leadership is needed for a younger team than it is for a veteran team,'' Steinbrenner said. "I'm taking that into account and Cash is, too.

"I think if you ask Cash, it's also important for the next manager to have an understanding of analytics, because that's such an important part of the game. If they don't have it, they at least need a willingness to learn.''

FILE PHOTO: MLB: San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks

FILE PHOTO: Aug 27, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo (17) talks with MLB umpire Ron Kulpa (46) after Kulpa threw David Peralta (6) out of the game for arguing balls and strikes against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning at Chase Field. Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

FILE PHOTO: MLB: San Francisco Giants at Arizona Diamondbacks

FILE PHOTO: Aug 27, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo (17) talks with MLB umpire Ron Kulpa (46) after Kulpa threw David Peralta (6) out of the game for arguing balls and strikes against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning at Chase Field. Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Giants' No. 4 prospect linked to potential trade for Stanton

According to MLB.com, the asking price for Giancarlo Stanton's services isn't going to be cheap for the San Francisco Giants...

MLB Rumors: White Sox Open to Inquiries on Jose Abreu, Avisail Garcia

It's that time of year again where major league baseball's free agency will spark a lot of rumors and a lot of deals in teams hopes that a player will bring them one step closer to a championship.

Nine players have received $17.4 million qualifying offers from their teams, and a total of 166 players have filed for free agency.

The majority of deals are expected to take place during the Baseball Winter Meetings on Dec. 10–14 in Orlando, Florida. The league's general manager as set to meet this week.

The Reiter 50: MLB's Best Free Agents | MLB Free Agent Compensation Rules

Here is the latest news and rumors from around the league.

Rumors and News

• White Sox GM Rick Hahn says he has received inquiries about first baseman Jose Abreu and outfielder Avisail Garcia and haven't ruled out the possibility of a trade. (ESPN.com)

• The Minnesota Twins are hoping to strength its pitching depth and are looking at Yu Darvish and Jake Arrieta. (FanRag Sports)

• The Giants aren't planning on trading ace Madison Bumgarner. (San Francisco Chronicle)

• Trade talks have revolved around Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler as the GM meetings get underway. (MLB.com)

The New York Yankees will interview San Francisco Giants bench coach Hensley Meulens for their vacant managerial job. (FanRag Sports)

• The Orioles are willing to listen to trade scenarios involving closer Zach Britton. The Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers reportedly have the most interest. (FanRag Sports)

• Free agent first baseman Carlos Santana has been shown interest by the Seattle Mariners, but no substantial talks between them have started. (MLB.com)

• The Giants are inquiring about Reds outfielders Billy Hamilton. (MLB Network)

MLB Rumors: Giants Interested in Jackie Bradley, Jr.

It's that time of year again where major league baseball's free agency will spark a lot of rumors and a lot of deals in teams hopes that a player will bring them one step closer to a championship.

Nine players have received $17.4 million qualifying offers from their teams, and a total of 166 players have filed for free agency.

The majority of deals are expected to take place during the Baseball Winter Meetings on Dec. 10-14 in Orlando, Florida.

The Reiter 50: MLB's Best Free Agents | MLB Free Agent Compensation Rules

Here is the latest news and rumors from around the league.

Rumors and News

• The San Francisco Giants have interest in trading for Boston Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. (MLB.com)

• The St. Louis Cardinals are "determined" in their pursuit Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton and will find out this week if they could possibly trade for him. (St. Louis Post–Dispatch)

• Shohei Ohtani said he is open to either pitching or hitting whenever he gets to the major leagues. Otani has yet to be posted so it remains to be seen which teams are interested in the 23–year-old. (MLB.com)

The Kansas City Royals will attempt re–sign Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas. The Royals extended $17.4 million qualifying offers to both players last week. (FanRag Sports)

MLB Rumors: J.D. Martinez, Jay Bruce Seeking Big Deals

It's that time of year again where major league baseball's free agency will spark a lot of rumors and a lot of deals in teams hopes that a player will bring them one step closer to a championship.

Nine players have received $17.4 million qualifying offers from their teams, and a total of 166 players have filed for free agency.

The majority of deals are expected to take place during the Baseball Winter Meetings on Dec. 10-14 in Orlando, Florida.

The Reiter 50: MLB's Best Free Agents | MLB Free Agent Compensation Rules

Here is the latest news and rumors from around the league.

Rumors and News

• The A's are interested in Miami Marlins outfielders Marcell Ozuna and Christian Yelich, but prefers a right-handed hitter over a left-handed bat. (San Francisco Chronicle)

• The early asking price for Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder J.D. Martinez is believed to be around $200 million. (ESPN.com)

• The San Francisco Giants have interest in Chicago Cubs Gold Glove outfielder Jason Heyward, and could offer pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Mark Melancon in any deal. (MLB.com)

• MLBPA to meet with Shohei Ohtani's agency, bringing Japan's top player a step closer to joining a major league club. (MLB.com)

• Free-agent outfielder Jay Bruce is reportedly seeing a five-year deal worth $80–90 million. (ESPN.com)

• Strengthening the bullpen is hight on the New York Mets priority list this offseason and could be targeting Bryan Shaw and Brandon Morrow among others. (New York Post)

• Longtime Yankees coach Rob Thomson interviewed for the managerial vacancy on Thursday. The interview lasted more than five hours. (New York Daily News)

• The Marlins would prefer to trade Giancarlo Stanton to the Cardinals. Stanton could block a deal with his no-trade clause, though. (Fan Rag Sports)

• Stanton, a SoCal native, wants to go to the Angels or Dodgers but neither team is interested. (USA Today)

• The Marlins are in preliminary talks with the Red Sox, Cardinals, Giants and Phillies regarding Stanton. (MLB Network)

• Logan Morrison expressed interest in playing for his hometown Royals. (MLB Network Radio)

• Yu Darvish might return to the Dodgers but it’s not likely. (Fan Rag Sports)

Judge, Sabathia, Astros honored by New York baseball writers

FILE - In this Aug. 6, 1998, file photo, New York Mets' John Olerud bats against San Francisco Giants pitcher Orel Hershiser in the third inning of a baseball game in New York. The Casey Stengel You Could Look It Up award from the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America went to former Mets first baseman Olerud, who batted .354 in 1998. That remains the highest single-season mark in franchise history. (AP Photo/John Dunn, File)

MLB: Cincinnati Reds at San Francisco Giants

May 12, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford (35) throws the ball to second base after catching a pop up during the first inning of the game against the Cincinnati Reds at AT&T Park. Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports/File Photo

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2017 file photo, San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Matt Moore throws to the Colorado Rockies during a baseball game in San Francisco. As planned, San Francisco exercised their $7 million option for Moore. In 2017 He was 6-15, a career-high losses, with a 5.52 ERA over 174 1/3 innings. He allowed a career-high 107 earned runs. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

In this Sept. 25, 2017, photo, San Francisco Giants' Johnny Cueto delivers a pitch to the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning of a baseball game in Phoenix. Giants won 9-2 over the Diamondbacks. Right-hander Cueto is staying with the San Francisco Giants. He had the option to opt out of his contract that runs through 2021. The team said Sunday, Nov. 5, the pitcher had decided to remain with the Giants. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner throws during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

FILE - This 2017 file photo shows Houston Astros assistant hitting coach Alonzo Powell. The San Francisco Giants formally announced Monday, Nov. 6, 2017, the hiring of Powell as their new baseball hitting coach, replacing Hensley Meulens, who has been promoted to bench coach. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

FILE - This Feb. 22, 2017, file photo shows Oakland Athletics baseball pitching coach Curt Young in Mesa, Ariz. The San Francisco Giants formally announced Monday, Nov. 6, 2017, the hiring of former Athletics and Red Sox pitching coach Young to replace longtime pitching coach Dave Righetti. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson, File)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

FILE - In this Sept. 23, 2017 file photo, San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner throws during a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Los Angeles. Madison Bumgarner's $12-million option for the 2018 season has been exercised by the San Francisco Giants, who are determined to keep a talented rotation intact as the club looks to bounce back from a last-place season. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

The San Francisco Giants have exercised their contract options on lefty pitchers Madison Bumgarner and Matt Moore.

Giants exercise contract options on lefties Bumgarner, Moore

The San Francisco Giants have exercised their contract options on lefty pitchers Madison Bumgarner and Matt Moore.

Pitcher Johnny Cueto decides to stay Giants, no opting out

San Francisco Giants pitcher Johnny Cueto works against the San Diego Padres in the second inning of a baseball game Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Giants Fan Colin Hanks Has No Problem Gloating After Dodgers' World Series Loss

"Life in Pieces" actor and diehard San Francisco Giants fan Colin Hanks discusses was it was like to watch the Los Angleles Dodgers lose in heartbreaking fashion against the Houston Astros.

Giants Fan Colin Hanks Has No Problem Gloating After Dodgers' World Series Loss

"Life in Pieces" actor and diehard San Francisco Giants fan Colin Hanks discusses was it was like to watch the Los Angleles Dodgers lose in heartbreaking fashion against the Houston Astros.

Giants Fan Colin Hanks Has No Problem Gloating After Dodgers' World Series Loss

"Life in Pieces" actor and diehard San Francisco Giants fan Colin Hanks discusses was it was like to watch the Los Angleles Dodgers lose in heartbreaking fashion against the Houston Astros.

Giants Fan Colin Hanks Has No Problem Gloating After Dodgers' World Series Loss

"Life in Pieces" actor and diehard San Francisco Giants fan Colin Hanks discusses was it was like to watch the Los Angleles Dodgers lose in heartbreaking fashion against the Houston Astros.

Rainbow resurgence: Bright Astros jerseys now a fan favorite

FILE - In this Sept. 25, 1986, file photo, Houston Astros pitcher Mike Scott, center, reacts at first base after pitching a no-hitter and winning the NL West Division against the San Francisco Giants in the Houston Astrodome in Houston, Texas. At left is first baseman Glenn Davis and at right is Bill Doran. Those rainbow jerseys that were mocked so much when the Houston Astros debuted them decades ago have now become fan favorites at Minute Maid Park. The brightly colored style is sure to seen throughout the crowd when the World Series resumes this weekend. The Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers are all even going into Game 3.(AP Photo/Ed Kolenovsky, File)

McCullers is ready to throw the Los Angeles Dodgers a curve

FILE - At left, in an Oct. 17, 2017, file photo, Houston Astros starting pitcher Lance McCullers Jr. throws during the first inning of Game 4 of baseball's American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees, in New York. At right, in a Sept. 13, 2017, file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Yu Darvish throws to a San Francisco Giants batter during the second inning of a baseball game, in San Francisco. McCullers Jr. is ready to throw the Dodgers another curve _ he ended the AL Championship Series with 24 of them. He starts the World Series Game 3 for the Astros against Darvish. (AP Photo/File)

Two San Francisco Giants defenders nominated for Gold Gloves

The Giants have made upgrading their defense an offseason priority, but there are two spots where they remain elite...

Giants reassign pitching coach Dave Righetti, other staffers

FILE - In this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo ,San Francisco Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija, left, walks with pitching coach Dave Righetti, right, after Samardzija warmed up in the bullpen before a baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix. The Giants have reassigned Righetti from manager Bruce Bochys field staff to special assistant to the general manager, working under Bobby Evans. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

Giants reassign pitching coach Dave Righetti, other staffers

San Francisco Giants pitcher Jeff Samardzija, left, walks with pitching coach Dave Righetti, right, after Samardzija warmed up in the bullpen prior to a baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

San Francisco Giants make 3 changes to coaching staff

Giants making coaching changes.

Scherzer shows starters in relief are a roll of the dice

FILE - In this Oct. 29, 2014, file photo, San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Madison Bumgarner, left, and Buster Posey celebrate after winning 3-2 to win the series over Kansas City Royals after Game 7 of baseball's World Series in Kansas City, Mo. Bumgarner and Pedro Martinez made it look easy. It isn't. When a starter is called in to pitch in relief, his routine can be a lot different, and perhaps more importantly, he's often working on short rest. So far in this postseason, the results have been decidedly mixed. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”

The Top 25 Play-by-Play Broadcasters in Sports 2017

We live in a great era for play-by-play voices. The list of quality game-callers is deep and sports broadcasting has become far more inclusive than ever as evidenced by women (Tiffany Greene, Beth Mowins, Kate Scott, etc…) regularly getting play-by-play assignments that have traditionally been the domain of men only.

Given the quality of talent among play-by-play voices, I thought it would be a fun parlor game to list the 25 best working play-by-play broadcasters in the business. This list is entirely subjective. It is entirely based on my likes when it comes to professionalism, preparation and quality of broadcast. I expect to be told on social media that the list sucks.

Some quick caveats: I did not include announcers working on sports television outside of the United States. If I did broadcasters such as Galvão Bueno, Bob Cole and Martin Tyler would be on the list. (Update: Andrés Cantor of Telemundo would definitely be on my Top 25 below. This was a total screwup on my part. I initially listed Cantor under broadcasters who work outside the U.S but he indeed calls games from inside the U.S. even if many of the teams he calls are non-U.S. teams.) I stayed away from broadcasters who are locally based, such as the fabulous Gary Cohen (New York Mets), Pat Hughes (Chicago Cubs), Jon Miller (San Francisco Giants) and Merrill Reese (Philadelphia Eagles). There are also a ton of quality broadcasters who did not make my Top 25 who would easily make other lists, such as Marv Albert (a likely Top 10 for someone else), Adam Amin, Jason Benetti, Tim Brando, Bob Costas, Joe Davis, Dave Flemming, Dan Hicks, Matt Vasgersian, Ted Robinson, Bob Wischusen and on and on.

But the goal was to come up with a Top 25. So herewith your 2017 list.

25. Verne Lundquist, CBS Sports

I don’t care that he’s retired from college football. He’s on my list so I can give him the option of coming back. Plus, he's still doing college basketball.

24. Beth Mowins, ESPN

The signature voice of the popular Women’s World Series coverage (viewership is around 2 million), one of the best-ever calling women’s basketball and as expected, her NFL work on CBS and ESPN has been strong.

23. Phil Liggett, NBC Sports

The soundtrack for the Tour de France in the United States. He and the equally-terrific Paul Sherwen have called the race together for 32 years.

22. Mary Carillo, The Tennis Channel and NBC Sports

A play-by-play caller who is unafraid to deliver truths while calling a match. Carillo treats broadcasting with a journalistic bent.

21. Arlo White, NBC Sports

For those of us who love the Premier League, White is a treat each weekend.

20. Jim Lampley, HBO Sports

The gold standard for boxing broadcasters.

19. Kevin Burkhardt, Fox Sports

Great to see a grinder keep moving up in the business. Also, a quality studio host.

18. Sean McDonough, ESPN

People have short memories: He and Chris Spielman once formed college football’s best listen.

17. Brad Nessler, CBS

He’s been a seamless fit as the lead voice of the most important college football conference.

16. Dave Pasch, ESPN

An underrated voice who provides quality calls in both college basketball and college football. Plus, he handles Bill Walton.

15. Kenny Albert, Fox Sports, NBC Sports, MSG Networks

Albert’s multi-sport versatility is very impressive and always provides a professional broadcast no matter the sport.

14. Chris Fowler, ESPN

The best tennis match caller working today. There are better on college football but he’s improved each year at that gig, too.

13. Gus Johnson, Fox Sports

Nobody does late-game excitement better than Johnson, who has long showed versatility between college football, college basketball and the NBA.

12. Dan Shulman, ESPN

One of the best national baseball voices around and a quality college basketball voice.

11. Jim Nantz, CBS Sports

A great big event golf voice and his technical skill in helping Tony Romo emerge this year should not go unnoticed.

10. Joe Buck, Fox Sports

Perennially underrated as a baseball voice and he’s self-deprecating on the mic, which is welcome.

9. Kevin Harlan, CBS, Turner Sports, and Westwood One

Morphs easily between audio (calling the NFL) and television (calling the NBA). Pure quality and great pipes.

8. Ian Darke, ESPN

Just an absolutely pleasure to listen to for U.S. soccer fans since he came Stateside. Darke has elevated the call of the U.S. national teams to a place it had not been prior to his assignment.

7. Joe Tessitore, ESPN

In my opinion, Tessitore, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe form the best college football group today. He’s also an excellent blow-by-blow caller in boxing.

6. Brian Anderson, CBS Sports, Turner Sports and Fox Sports Wisconsin (Brewers)

This isn’t too high for him. Smart broadcasting marks know the kind of quality Anderson brings on baseball, college basketball and the NBA.

5. Mike Tirico, NBC Sports

The most versatile play by play voice of his generation: Tirico has called primetime NFL games, NBA Finals (on radio), college basketball, major college football including Notre Dame, golf and tennis.

4. Ian Eagle, CBS Sports, Westwood One, Tennis Channel, YES Network

One of the best at infusing humor in a broadcast, an Eagle broadcast is always informative and entertaining.

3. Mike Breen, ESPN/ABC and MSG Networks

Along with being one of the best NBA voices in history, Breen shares the mic with his analysts (ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and Walt Frazier on MSG) as selflessly as any top play-by-play voice.

2. Al Michaels, NBC Sports

Still the gold standard for the NFL—and still going strong at age 72. He’ll call his 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 4, 2018.

1. Mike Emrick, NBC Sports

Traveling through an alphabet soup of employers (including NBC, CBS, Fox, MSG, VERSUS, TNT, OLN, CSTV, SportsChannel Philadelphia, PRISM and Fox Sports Net) during his five-decade Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Emrick has cemented himself as the announcer most associated with the NHL in America. But his skills go well beyond merely his sport. No working sports broadcaster does frantic better than Emrick, who turned 70 on Aug. 1. He’s also a magnificent wordsmith. We will not see his kind again soon when he leaves.

“My role is to be a conduit between the skill of the players and the understanding of the fans," Emrick once told me. "I'm just more or less someone who can describe something, and hopefully with passion.”