Sunday, December 5, 2010

Ron's Greatest Moments in the Booth

Here is the countdown of my top ten moments of Ron Santo during his 20 seasons in the WGN Radio broadcast booth.

10. Sir, can you please SIT DOWN!
A couple of seasons ago a fan holding up a large sign in Houston stood up and blocked Ronny's view of the game. Over the air, the Cubs legend screamed at the fan and asked him to have a seat.

9. Carrot Cake
At some point during the early part of the last decade, Ron asked Pat what type of cake he liked to eat on his Birthday. Hughes said he was a fan of carrot cake, and Ron sounded disgusted when he said "You can't have carrot cake on your birthday!". This hilarious clip is available on The Best of Pat & Ron CD, which you can order on WGNRadio.com.

8. YESSSSSSS!!!!
"YEESSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!! YES sir!!! YESSSSSSSSS!" Ron's priceless reaction when the Cubs won the division in 2008.

7. "If this kid keeps pitching like this we might be in a World Series."
Ron's heartfelt commentary during the Kerry Wood 20 strikeout game in 2008. This classic was replayed yesterday on WGN Radio.

6. Pat's Sweater
Ronny always gave his partner a hard time about the old smelly sweaters that Pat would put in the Wrigley Field closet and break out when the weather got nippy. This sweater was a frequent topic of conversation over the years until finally Santo got fed up with it and stole it. He donated it to a carwash for them to use as a rag.

5. Boltzy
Any reference to producer Matt Boltz's drinking habits were always enjoyed by listeners. Ronny had a lot of fun over the years at Bolty's expense. At one time when describing a particular incident Ron had, Pat said "It was very late at night... It was with Matt Boltz."

4. "Oh Nooooo!"
Ron uttered this phrase over the air many times, but the most popular one came in 1998. Everyone knows about went Brant Brown a routine fly ball and Santo screamed the two words.

3. Speaking of Two Words...
Thom Brennaman loves to share the story about the first words Ron Santo ever uttered over the air as the Cubs color commentator. Ron, Bob Brenly and Thom were beginning their first season as the WGN-720 broadcast team in 1990. Spring Training was in the books, but it was Opening Day and the first game that counted ever with the new team in the booth. Just as the red light went on to signal that they were on the air, a gust of wind picked up and blew Ron's papers all over the place. Ron uttered two words that Thom says "you cannot say on radio, but Ron Santo said them." The legend was off and running!

2. The Question
In the early 1990s when the games were on national TV, Harry Caray would come to the radio booth to join Brennaman and Santo for all nine innings. During one game, things got a little dull so the fantastic trio started talking about Ron's hairpiece. Harry asked the famous question. "Thommy, I'm gonna take the dare. I gotta ask you Ron, when you go to bed at night, with your lovely wife, do you wear your toupee?" Santo's reply came after tons of laughter. "Harry, I take that off and a put a hat on!"

1. It's on fire!!!
Pat Hughes' favorite Ron Santo story is the time his hairpiece caught on fire at Shea Stadium in 2003. We've all heard the story lots of times. During the National Anthem of a game in April, Pat saw smoke billowing out from the top of Ron's head. This moments was discussed many times for the next seven years.

Come baseball season, it is not going to be the same.

9 comments:

  1. Thank you for this! It was a great way for me to remember the good times with Ronnie. :)

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  8. Wow you forgot the best one... how about when pat borrowed rons car and put the parking break on. Ron went to drive to the stadium aND couldnt go over 40 miles an hour and the wheels were smoking. He showed up to the stadium furious asking pat what he did to the car explaining it was smoking and couldn't go over 40....cars were slowing down honking at Ron cheering while the car bellowed smoke...pat asked if he turned the parking break and Ron asked "what's a parking break?" Classic!

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  9. Wow you forgot the best one... how about when pat borrowed rons car and put the parking break on. Ron went to drive to the stadium aND couldnt go over 40 miles an hour and the wheels were smoking. He showed up to the stadium furious asking pat what he did to the car explaining it was smoking and couldn't go over 40....cars were slowing down honking at Ron cheering while the car bellowed smoke...pat asked if he turned the parking break and Ron asked "what's a parking break?" Classic!

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