Sunday, February 9, 2014

R.I.P. Ralph Kiner

Baseball Hall of Famer and iconic New York Mets broadcaster Ralph Kiner died on February 06, 2013 at the age of 91. 

 Kiner took his place among the baseball greats in Cooperstown as a result of a stellar career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago Cubs, and Cleveland Indians, between 1946 and 1955.

But, in New York, he was beloved as a long-time broadcaster for the New York Mets – both on WOR TV Channel 9 and the various radio stations that carried Mets games.  He began broadcasting when the Mets began playing, in 1962, as part of the legendary team of Bob Murphy, Lindsay Nelson, and Ralph Kiner – seen below from left to right, with the great Shea Stadium scoreboard in the background.

Kiner’s WOR TV post-game show, Kiner’s Korner, is permanently etched in the memories of anyone who saw it.  Using the still-new technology of “Videotape Replay” (described literally as such by a superimposed graphic), Kiner would recap the events with two stars of the game in a seated and relaxed atmosphere that is almost inconceivable in today’s world of “Three Questions on the Sideline”, or microphones shoved at players in a locker room. 

I really enjoyed Kiner’s Korner, which followed every Mets home game on WOR television starting in 1964, often more so than many of those frustrating early Mets games themselves!   

Amazingly, Kiner continued to participate in occasional Mets radio broadcasts into the 2013 season!  And it was always a treat to discover he was part of a game that I’d tune into while in the car! 
Ralph Kiner in 2011

Rest In Peace, Ralph Kiner.  You will always be beloved in New York! 

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