Pat Hughes, now in his 28th season of calling Cubs games on radio, was the winner of this year’s Ford C. Frick Award, given by the Baseball Hall of Fame for broadcasting excellence.
Honestly, I cannot think of a more deserving recipient. In addition to his excellent radio calls of Cubs games, he is one of the nicest human beings I have ever met. I have done some work with Pat Hughes. He wrote an article a number of years ago for me when I was editing the Cubs’ Maple Street Press annuals, about how he approaches his work, and also wrote the foreword to both of my books. He was so kind and giving of his time and always wanted to make sure that what he submitted was what I wanted — which it was, exactly so. I’ve run into him a few times since then and he’s always been kind and gracious.
If you didn’t see Pat’s acceptance speech, here it is:
As always, Pat made a wonderful speech — he’s such a good public speaker, as well as his excellence as a broadcaster.
A friend of mine attended this ceremony, held in upstate New York Saturday. That ceremony, held at an opera house outside of Cooperstown also honored two other recipients of awards, writer John Lowe, who received the Baseball Writers Association of America’s Career Excellence Award, and former player Carl Erskine, recipient of the Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement Award.
I do have one thing I want to say about this ceremony that I think the Hall of Fame ought to change. My friend said there were about 200 people in attendance.
Why would the Hall do this? I do understand that these are award winners, not inductees into the Hall, but why not have a public ceremony for them as well, separate from the actual induction? I’d think thousands of Cubs fans would have gone to Cooperstown to see Pat Hughes make this speech in public. Hopefully, the Hall will consider changing this in the future. These speeches were made in public in the past — here’s the one Harry Caray made in 1989:
Congratulations to Pat Hughes on this well-deserved award. Pat is an outstanding broadcaster and a better human being.