Russell Patrick Hodges
(June 18, 1910 –
April 19, 1971) was an
who did play-by-play for several baseball
teams, most notably the New York
and San Francisco Giants.
began his career in 1929.
He was nomadic for the first two
decades of his career. He worked for the Chicago Cubs, Washington Senators, and Cincinnati Reds before landing in New York
City with the New York
Yankees and New York
Giants, who during much of the 1940s only broadcast home games
and shared the same radio team — lead announcer Mel Allen and No.
2 man Hodges. In 1949
, Hodges became a No. 1 announcer when
the Giants and the Yankees separated their radio networks to each
broadcast a full, 154-game schedule. He would be the voice of the
Giants for the next 22 seasons on both coasts.
Famed 1951 Bobby Thompson home run call
On October 3
Hodges was at the microphone for Bobby
famous Shot Heard 'Round the
. It was Hodges who cried, "The Giants win the
pennant! The Giants win the pennant!"
This famous moment in sports broadcasting was nearly lost. This was
in an era before all game broadcasts were recorded. However, in his
autobiography, Hodges related how a Brooklyn fan, excited
over what appeared to be a certain Dodger victory, hooked up his
home tape recorder to his radio.
The fan wanted to capture
Hodges "crying." Instead, he recorded history; the next day, he
called Hodges and said, "You have to have this
In the film The Godfather,
Sonny Corleone is listening to
this broadcast on his car radio when he is murdered at a toll
booth. It was also used in an episode of M*A*S*H
Hodges was also the lead announcer for Pabst Blue Ribbon Bouts
from 1948-1955. The most famous fight called by
Hodges was Muhammad Ali
vs. Sonny Liston
, one of the most anticipated, watched, and
controversial fights in boxing history. Some other fights Hodges
called include Beau Jack
vs. Ike Williams
vs. Ezzard Charles
Sugar Ray Robinson
vs. Jake LaMotta
, and Joe Louis vs. Cesar
Giants moved to San Francisco in 1958, Hodges
followed the club west.
He continued working for the team
, when he retired. His
signature home run call was, "Bye-Bye, Baby!"
, a phrase
that was set to music as the Giants' theme song during the
Death and subsequent honors
died suddenly of a heart
attack in Mill Valley, California on April 19, 1971.
Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association
into its Hall of Fame in 1975. In 1980,
became the fourth recipient of the Ford
Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting from the
Baseball Hall of
Fame. In 2000, the
Giants named the broadcast booths in their new ballpark the Hodges-Simmons Broadcast Center in honor of
Hodges and his former partner Lon
In 2008, Hodges was elected into the Bay Area Radio Hall of
, joining his longtime broadcast partner Simmons, who was
inducted in 2006.