Less Fosse? Say it ain’t so

It looks like Ray Fosse is going to get a 20-game break from TV broadcasts that he didn’t ask for.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle former A’s first baseman Scott Hatteberg will  replace Ray Fosse on TV for 20 games this season beginning June 15 which kind of seems like an odd, sudden move by the A’s. Does this mean Fosse is going to gradually get pushed out of the broadcast booth in the near future? I hope not.

I won’t pretend that he’s a Hall of Fame broadcaster (which doesn’t really have any value anyway since Tim McCarver is a HOF broadcaster) but he’s been a part of every summer of A’s baseball that I’ve ever followed and it’d be a shame to see him go. Hearing Foss get a little too excited about ultra slow motion replays, Dibs, HDTV, groundskeeper Clay Wood, and anything involving catchers adds a welcome bit of entertainment value to the game.

Personally, I don’t want to miss that for 20 games. It was hard enough starting the season without Ken Korach’s velvety smooth voice on the radio and it’s still hard to go an entire summer without the late, great, beloved Bill King.

Note to the A’s: Don’t take my Foss away from me. In fact, feel free to give me more Fosse. Let the man sing the National Anthem and God Bless America at every home game or let him throw Dibs into the crowd between innings. You can never have too much Fosse.

Scott Hatteberg helped the A’s win 20 games in a row and now he’s going to broadcast 20 games starting later this month. Is it a coincidence that on the anniversary of the 20-game streak Hatteberg will work 20 games as a broadcaster?

None of this is a knock on Hatteberg who’s always come across as a sharp, entertaining guy in the interviews I’ve heard and I bet he’s going to be great in his new gig for however long it lasts. A little fresh blood isn’t the worst thing in the world for A’s telecasts but I’d prefer to see Glen Kuiper get a 20 game break rather than Fosse.

Of course, that’s not meant as a knock on Kuiper either even though it totally comes across as a knock on Kuiper. He’s affable, perfectly harmless and it’s not like he ruins A’s game with his personality because he’s inoffensively bland. But those are basically his strong points which is kind of a sad statement. Maybe one of the reasons I’ve never warmed to Kuiper as an A’s broadcaster is that he makes me think of Giants broadcaster Duane Kuiper. Duane Kuiper makes me think of Mike Krukow which makes me think of the mute button which gets a workout anytime I channel surf over to a Giants game.

Have I mentioned that I’m not a fan of Kruk and Kuip? I guess Glen Kuiper suffers from guilt by distant association which isn’t particularly fair on my part.  Sorry about that Glen.

Baby Kuip also suffers from the fact that I wish the A’s shelled out the money to keep Greg Papa on the air several years ago. The fact that every time I listen to Glen Kuiper call an A’s game I 1.) Get a little bored and 2.) Miss Papa and get annoyed at the thought of Kruk, Kuip, and the Giants.  That just isn’t a recipe for success when I tune in to the A’s on TV.

Do the A’s really need to shove Fosse completely out of the way for 20 games to break Hatteberg in as a TV broadcaster? Would it kill them to work a three-man booth for some games to ease him into the gig? Why not start out with Hatteberg sitting in for a few innings for a few games, advance to a whole game about a half dozen times with everyone in the booth, and if he’s doing well and likes the work then see where it goes from there? At that point you can show some respect for Fosse’s decades of commitment to the franchise and let him have some say in making the call for what games he’ll take off.

Just an idea.

If this is the start of something special with Hatteberg I’m all for it, but if it’s also the beginning of the end for Fosse then I have some minor reservations about where this 20-game run on TV with Hatteberg will lead.

Follow me on Twitter at @JunkballBlogger or get in touch via e-mail at junkball99@gmail.com and we’ll kick some stuff around for the sake of amusement.


6 thoughts on “Less Fosse? Say it ain’t so

  1. Right on, Jason!! I agree wholeheartedly. I like your easing Hatty in slowly to see how he does. Don’t deprive us of our Ray for 20 games.

    On another note, I must admit that the Ka’aihue assigment surprised me, as he has had some key hits in games lately. And Moss is not a natural first baseman. I think the A’s have held onto Darick Barton for far too long. Yes, he is a great defensive guy, but he used to hit clost to 300, and he’s below the Mendoza line now. I’d have kept Ka’aihue instead. The upside is much greater.

    BTW, I am excited to announce that “Contract Year: a baseball novel” has been published! It’s the story of an All-Star pitcher who will be come a highly-paid free agent at the end of the season, if he has a great year with the Oakland Renegades (yes, they play in the Coliseum). But everything in his live tanks, and the reader follows his poignant and bumpy journey to find himself again on the mound and in his personal life. Check it out at http://www.contractyearnovel.com.


    • Bee, congrats on getting your book published! I know you’ve been working hard at it for a while and I’m sure it must be gratifying to successfully complete the book.

      As for Foss, it’ll be interesting to see where things go from here. I wish some of the inside story would leak out so we could get a glimpse of what’s going on behind the scenes. On the surface it certainly seems like the situation has been handled in a sloppy manner by the A’s.

      Same goes for the way they cut Kila but baseball can be a brutal business and when you’re hitting .234 having twins on the way won’t save you from the harsh realities of competition for playing time.

      I hope the big guy lands on his feet somewhere soon but he never looked like a long-term solution at first base for the A’s. Overall, he only got as much playing time as he did because Daric Barton/Brandon Allen/Chris Carter were so terrible.

      I’ll live with the A’s being viewed as a mean organization if the payoff is Brandon Moss’ hot streak. It’s nice to have a first baseman who can hit for some power again even though smart money says the league will probably catch up to Moss in a week or two.

      • Hey, Jason,

        Thanks for the reply. I think Hatteberg has done a great job so far, so I can’t complain on that ground. But the A’s–as usual–didn’t handle it well. Kila cleared waivers and is back at Sacramento so all is not lost. He needs to prove he can hit consistently to be called up again. Now that Moss is hitting a blue streak, Sacramento is where Kila belongs for the time being. And it still boggles the mind that Darick Barton and Chris Carter are still in the organization.

        I have a deal for you. I will send you a free copy of my book if you agree to review it for me on your blog. Let me know if that works for you.


  2. Bee,

    I’d love to read the book but I’d also hate to waste your time by taking a free copy of it when I probably won’t have the time to read it anytime soon. The sad truth is I haven’t read a book since shortly before my kids were born and I don’t see my free time opening up in the near future to allow me to sit down and enjoy a good read anytime soon.

    Good luck with the book and I hope it’s getting great feedback so far from your readers.

    Take care,


    • Contract Year is getting great feedback from my readers. It has a 5-star rating on Amazon! Maybe some of your followers would be interested in reading it. Check it out at http://www.contractyearnovel.com. It’s also available on Amazon.com.

      I completely understand your not having time to read it. I’ve watched my daughter and her husband deal with 2 small kids. They both work full time and are exhausted most of the time. If you change your mind, let me know. It’s a great book to read when on a trip.


  3. One of my favorite moments with Foss was when some fan bought and had the vendor send him up some Dibs during the game. He looked very happy! Classic!

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