- Hello again, everybody.
It's a bee-yooo-tiful day for baseball.
- I'll tell you what's helped me my entire life.
I look at baseball as a game. It's something where people can go out,
enjoy and have fun. Nothing more.
- In Chicago, Harry was a larger-than-life symbol of
baseball and like all Chicagoans, I
valued him not only for his
contributions to the game but also his
love and zest for life. ... Nobody could
sing 'Take Me Out to the Ball Game'
like he could. And I hope he's doing a
seventh-inning rendition in heaven.
--First Lady Hillary Clinton, on Harry Caray, 18Feb98
- Booze, broads and bullshit. If you got all that,
what else do you need?
- Bob Verdi was an outstanding sports columnist for the Chicago Tribune
until recently, when he went to work for Golf Digest and Golf World.
Verdi found Harry Caray to be a delightful character, and once per season
the sports columnist and the voice of the Cubs would get together for
conversation, cocktails and dinner.
The site of these affairs was Eli's, an old-time steakhouse just off
Michigan Avenue. One evening, the pair met around 8, and Verdi
announced that he had to leave for an out-of-town assignment early the
next morning, and thus would have to depart Eli's at a reasonable time.
Harry nodded, then summoned the waiter
for the first round of drinks. The hours
passed, and Harry kept the drinks
coming. It was near midnight. Finally, a
groggy Verdi said, "Well, it's about that
Caray looked at his watch, said, "You're
right, Bob," then raised his right arm,
snapped his fingers and bellowed,
"Waiter! Menus. We need menus."
--By Patrick Reusse, Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune
- I've only been doing this 54 years.
With a little experience, I might get better.
-- Harry Caray, on his mis-pronouncations
Caray was keeping an
appointment at the Chase Hotel in St.
Louis. It was a rainy night. He parked
his car and had to cross the busy
King's Highway. When Caray
stepped into traffic, he was hit by a vehicle and knocked in the air.
When Harry told the story, it always included witnesses seeing him fly
through the air and then copying his home run call to say: "It could be, it
might be, it is . . . Harry Caray."
--By Patrick Reusse, Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune
- Holy Cow!
- I met Harry Caray over 15 years ago, when I, an innocent 7-year-old
after a treasured autograph in an Atlanta hotel lobby, was asked by a
white-haired, jolly old man who I had managed to see tonight. I
remember my answer precisely: "Mister, you're the first person I've
spoken to." The next thing I know I was in the presence of Rick Sutcliffe,
Ryne Sandberg, and several other players, all the while supervised by this
jolly old, white-haired man who had done something out of the goodness
of his heart.
--John Felts, Ridgeway, Va., from ESPN SportsZone: Memories from Zone users
- I think it's the greatest shot in the arm baseball
could get. Once upon a time, all kids wanted to be baseball players, but
nowadays a young kid dreams about playing basketball or football and
making millions. I think it's great to see a man who has reached the
pinnacle of his career, and now he wants to go back and do what he
wanted to do as a kid: play baseball.
-- Harry Caray, on Michael Jordan
Caray was so much a national treasure that when he returned to the broadcast booth at Wrigley
Field from a stroke in 1987, President Reagan called to welcome Harry back.
Reagan, who also once broadcast Cubs games, began to reminisce when Harry suddenly
interrupted: ''Bobby Dernier just bunted for a single; I've got to get back to the game.'' And
promptly hung up! Broadcast partner Steve Stone almost fell off his chair.
-- Hal Bodley
- My whole philosophy is to
broadcast the way a fan would broadcast.
- I'll never forget when I went to a game at Wrigley and saw him
afterwards. He signed many autographs before getting into his limo. As
he was climbing in, he heard a woman in the back yelling for him to wait.
He was quickly approached by a lady and her blind son. The woman told
him her boy was blind, and could he touch his glasses. The young boy
fingered the large thick glasses and said, "It must be him, I'd know those
glasses anywhere!" The crowd went crazy, and Harry gave the boy a Cubs
--Lesha Apponey, Ruston, La., from ESPN SportsZone: Memories from Zone users
- I was down and despondent, and I had my doubts whether I'd ever come
back, but you know something? The mail. Boxes and
boxes of mail. That's what pulled me through as much as anything. Cards
and letters and telegrams from complete strangers. From schools, you
know the ones where the kids all draw a picture and sign their names? I'll
tell you something. I've taken some criticism for reading names on the air
-- birthdays, anniversaries, get-well wishes, that sort of thing.
Well, I first realized how much it meant when I was on the receiving
end. You never know when you recite the name of a shut-in between
innings or between pitches how that might affect a person who's not
feeling well or who's down on his luck. I know what it meant to me.
Boxes and boxes. I got boxes and boxes of mail in that hospital. I could
never possibly answer all of that mail.
--Harry Caray, on recovering from his stroke, 1987
I'm in Memphis one winter, early 1960s, to do a basketball game, the St.
Louis Hawks, back on TV to St. Louis," Caray recalled. "They played a
series of games in Memphis. I'm in my hotel room the afternoon of the
game. The phone rings."
And the story goes . . .
"Harry," the voice says. "Been listening to you for years. How are the
Cardinals gonna be this season?"
"I think we're gonna be OK," Caray replies. "We've got a good ball club.
Uh, who is this?"
"Elvis," the voice says.
"Elvis who?" Caray asks.
"Elvis Presley," the man answers.
"C'mon, don't give me that," Caray roars. "You're not Elvis Presley."
"You're a sporting man," the fellow goes on. "If you don't think it's me,
be down in front of the hotel in 10 minutes."
Caray obliged. Ten minutes passed, and a big Cadillac pulled up with
Elvis in it.
"Well, he took me to his mansion," Caray recalled. "We talked baseball,
music, what have you. Then he dropped me off at the arena so I could do
the basketball game and picked me up 15 minutes after the game. We
went back to his house and wound up eating ribs and drinking Budweiser
and shooting the bull until the wee hours. I'll never forget that phone
-- Harry Caray, from The Sporting News, July 2, 1966
When I was 14 years old in 1961, my family lived next door to Harry
Caray here in St. Louis. During the summer Mr. Caray had asked my
father if I could take care of his swimming pool as he was unable or
unwilling to do it himself. Once a week I would go to the Carays and
backwash and clean up the pool area. All summer long Mr. Caray
promised that he would get me a baseball glove for all the work I was
I kept on thinking that he'd call Rawlings and get me some junior model
glove. Finally towards the end of the summer he called me up to come
over and get the glove he had promised. When I went to his house he
presented me with a KEN BOYER (our Cardinal 3rd baseman) official
glove. The only problem was that this glove had been used. Used a lot!!!
And, marked on the strap of the glove was the #14. He had taken Ken
Boyer's glove from the Cardinals locker room and was giving it to me.
Was I excited ... and I still have the glove today.
--Bill Knight,St. Louis, from ESPN SportsZone: Memories from Zone users
- Oh, what difference does it make?
I figure I had no business being
here this long anyway, so what do you care
how old I am? I've been on borrowed time
for years. You know my old saying: live it
up, the meter's running. I've always said
that if you don't have fun while you're here,
then it's your fault. You only get to do this
--Harry Caray, on his true age, 14Feb98
- There's no person alive who got his money's worth better than my old man.
- Now, you tell me, if I
have a day off during the baseball
season, where do you think I`ll spend it?
The ballpark. I still love it; always have,
--Harry Caray, on his reason not to retire
- I know it is the fans that are responsible for me being here.
I've always tried in each and every broadcast to serve the fans to the
best of my ability.
- And hear Harry one more time A-one, a-two...