Monday, November 9, 2009

Why "The House by the Side of the Road" you may ask? As a life long Detroit Tiger fan I, like so many others, am indebted to the great Ernie Harwell for my knowledge and love of the Tigers. Harwell spent 42 years as the radio announcer for the tigers and one of his most famous calls was his description of a batter who took a called third strike, "He stood there like the house by the side of the road and watched it go by." Which is an allusion to the poem by Sam Walter Foss. The above Photo is the actual house by the side of the road from Foss' poem used to describe so many baseball greats over the years. As the Tiger's all time leader in strikeouts (batting) perhaps Lou Whitaker should consider purchasing the home as the batter who in all likelihood was most often compared to the house by the side of the road in Ernie's broadcasts.

In 1991 The Tigers flagship station WJR decided not to renew Mr. Harwell's contract. Fans to the first home game were given Ernie Harwell masks to hold in front of their faces in protest of Ernie's firing. New owner Mike Illitch brought Ernie back the following year where Harwell remained until his retirement in 2002. The Mask is pictured to the left.
Next Time: Lou Whitaker's 1990 Starting Lineup and maybe a surprise appearance from Alan Trammell's '90 SLU as well.

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