SBD/Issue 204/Sports Industrialists

Longtime Yankees Broadcaster, Player Bobby Murcer Dies At Age 62

Murcer Dies From
Complications Of Brain Cancer
YES Network announcer and former MLBer BOBBY MURCER, who "endeared himself to Yankee fans in a baseball career of more than four decades," died Saturday at the age of 62 as a result of complications from brain cancer, according to Richard Goldstein of the N.Y. TIMES. Murcer in '83 started working as a Yankees broadcaster, and after undergoing surgery for a cancerous brain tumor in December '06, returned to YES for '07 and had announced some games this season. Murcer said that he had worked with 31 different broadcast partners. Murcer also ran an annual golf tournament to raise money for cancer research and served as Chair of the Baseball Assistance Team, which "aids needy former baseball figures." Murcer in '93 was inducted into the Oklahoma Sports HOF (N.Y. TIMES, 7/14). Murcer since joining the booth in '83 won three Emmy awards for live sports coverage. He worked as a radio announcer from '83-85, before moving to TV as a commentator in '87. Murcer in '86 also served as Yankees Assistant GM (MLB.com, 7/13).

HE WILL BE MISSED: In N.Y., Richard Sandomir writes Murcer was a "very good and gracious player on some bad and mediocre Yankee teams. He was a warm and friendly voice in the Yankees broadcast booth." Murcer was "not a great announcer but became a loved one" (N.Y. TIMES, 7/14). On Long Island, Shaun Powell wrote on the air, Murcer "was never brash or abrasive or talked down to the audience" (NEWSDAY, 7/13). Also in N.Y.,  Bob Raissman wrote Murcer was "genuine. A baseball conversationalist. A storyteller with no pretense." With the "exception of RALPH KINER, ... there is no one in the Bronx or Queens with the same one-on-one connection Murcer has with fans" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 7/13). On Long Island, Ken Davidoff wrote baseball is "losing one of its bona fide gentlemen" (NEWSDAY, 7/13). In N.Y., Mike Lupica: "There was a reason why Murcer's teammates loved him the way they did and why Yankee fans loved him the way they did. He was as good a man as you think he was, never better than he was these last years facing a certain death from a cancer that nobody comes back from" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 7/13). Yankees manager Joe Girardi, with tears in his eyes, said of the passing of Bobby Murcer, “It’s extremely difficult because we loved him so much” (“Baseball Tonight,” ESPN, 7/12).

PAYING TRIBUTE: In N.Y., George King reports the Yankees for the remainder of the season will wear a black arm band on the left sleeve of their uniforms in memory of Murcer. King notes it is believed that MLB and the Yankees also will honor Murcer with a moment of silence prior to tomorrow night's MLB All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium (N.Y. POST, 7/14).

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