Friday, June 1, 2012

Hawk Shouldn't Apologize

Tonight Ken "Hawk" Harrelson is expected to make some sort of apology in regards to his blowup Thursday afternoon after Mark Wegner threw Jose Quintana out of the game.

I'll get to the apology and how ridiculous I feel this is, but I'll start by talking solely about Hawk and his "homer" style.

Like him or not Hawk Harrelson is a character.  And part of the character are his catch phrases, his stories, and his unbelievably over the top love for the team he broadcasts.

That's what Hawk is, that's what Hawk has been, that's what Hawk will always be.  

Personally, I'm not the biggest fan in the world of Hawk Harrelson, however, I do feel that it would be a shame if Hawk were to "tone it down" or even worse, no longer be the Sox play by play guy.

Hawk bothers me because of repetitiveness and lack of attention to the game at times.  Whether it's "quickly 0-2" every single time the count goes there, or "in my 7 decades of baseball", or even "don't stop now boys" Hawk has made habits of using certain sayings.  

I love catch phrases.  He Gone, Put it on the Board, Stretch, I use these in everyday situations.  But it's the "non catch phrases" as I'll call them that get to me.  We don't care about Carl Yastrzemski or Sandy Koufax.  We don't care that how the game was different (and often positioned as better) 50 years ago.  The count is quickly 0-2 but not quickly 2-0, or 1-1.  

That's what bothers me about Hawk.  But all in all, I do like that he's the voice of the Sox.  I believe the catch phrases give Sox fans a personality.  It bands Sox fans together, and you hear these phrases all the time at the ballpark.

But it's not only at the Cell.  You hear someone say "stretch" to someone reaching for a box of cereal in the grocery store, you are likely to say "get on back there" and instantly have a connection to a stranger that wouldn't have happened.  That's because of Hawk.

Hawk gives Sox fans a common vernacular.  It allows the 16 year old male fan to talk baseball with the 55 woman who's liked the Sox as long as she's lived.  These terms and this insane homerism become ingrained in Sox fans, and the passion pours from the TV speakers into our brains.  Hawk Harrelson's voice, is your voice as a Sox fan.

So when Hawk goes off on Mark Wegner, he's saying exactly what you are thinking.  I know when I saw the ejection I instantly jumped off my not-so-comfy couch and yelled "hey, that's not right."  Hawk may have said a little more than that, but I bet I would have to if someone was in my apartment here to listen (other than Wiglaf, but he doesn't talk back).

Hawk is not the standard broadcaster.  He's not doing national games, and therefore he's not supposed to be unbiased.  Hawk is Hawk because of stuff like this.  Hawk is famous for saying crazily homer stuff.  And not once has Hawk broken an FCC rule when he does it.  You can tell he's mad, but it's PG.  

So to make him apologize for this is outrageous.  Did he blast Mark Wegner a little too much?  For you and I, maybe, but deep down in Hawk's mind, no I don't think he thinks he did.  

The man is opinionated, and to make him apologize for his opinions, when you hired him to spew them during your teams broadcasts, is wrong.  And simply put, he shouldn't do it.  But he has to. 

So when you hear the apology tonight, just know, this wasn't his choice no matter how sincere he may sound.


  1. It's a shame for someone to have to apologize for being right. If only Len Kasper would show some emotion when he sees poor umpiring. Hawk has his flaws, but at least when bad umpiring occurs, he says so!

    1. Excellent point. Political correctness is starting to get out of hand.