John Sterling (sportscaster)

Infobox sports announcer
bgcolor =
name = John Sterling

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birthname =
birthdate = birth date and age|1938|7|4
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team(s) = New York Yankees (YES Network and WCBS-AM)
team homepage(s) = [ New York Yankees Homepage]
genre = Play-by-play
sport(s) = Baseball
salary =

John Sterling (born July 4, 1938) ["5 Questions For John Sterling." New York Post, June 28, 2002] Fact|date=August 2008 is an American sportscaster and the radio play-by-play announcer of Major League Baseball's New York Yankees. Sometimes called "The Legendary Voice of The New York Yankees", he has announced Yankees games since by|1989 without missing a game. [cite news|url=|title=John Sterling and Neil Berg In Concert: Baseball and Broadway|publisher=TheaterMania|language=English|accessdate=2008-08-04]

Broadcasting career

Early career

Sterling began his New York career as a talk show host with WMCA in the early 1970s. He later served as the radio voice for the WHA's New York Raiders, the WFL's New York Stars, the NHL's New York Islanders, and the ABA/NBA's New York/New Jersey Nets. Sterling also did a stretch with the Yankees as pre-game host on WMCA and WINS radio, as well as co-host on cable segments with Mel Allen.cite web|url=|title=John Sterling|publisher=MLB (Major League Baseball) Offical Site|accessdate=2008-08-02]

From 1975 through 1980, Sterling announced the New York Nets and Islanders games for WMCA, WVNJ, WOR-TV and SportsChannel. Previously, he hosted a talk show on New York's WMCA from 1971–1978. After his initial stint in New York, Sterling spent nine years in Atlanta working for Ted Turner and covering the Braves (1982–1987) and Hawks (1981–1989).

New York and the Yankees

In 1989, Sterling returned to New York to broadcast the games for the Yankees on WABC prior to the Yankees radio contract being awarded to WCBS where he presently calls games. Since 2004, his co-host has been Suzyn Waldman; past announcing partners include: Jay Johnstone (1989–1990), Joe Angel (1991), Michael Kay (1992–2001), and Charley Steiner (2002–2004). In March 2007, it was reported that Sterling and Waldman had signed contracts to continue as the Yankees' radio announcers through the 2011 season. [cite web|url=|title=Waldman and Sterling ink new deals|last=Raissman|firtst=Bob|date=2007-03-19|publisher=New York Daily News|archiveurl=|archivedate=2007-12-13]

Sterling's association with the Yankees is not limited to announcing live games over the radio. He is also host YES Network's acclaimed "Yankeeography" series, which produces biographies of New York Yankees. Among several nominations, Sterling has received two Emmy Awards for the series.cite news|url=|title=THE 46th ANNUAL NEW YORK EMMY AWARDS – 2003 WINNERS|publisher=The Emmy Awards|accessdate=2008-08-03] In addition, Sterling has a regular commentary feature on WCBS newscasts called "Sterling on Sports", in which he gives his take on a recent sporting event or sports news item. [cite web|url=|title=Sterling on Sports|date=08/03/08|publisher=WCBS NewsRadio 880|accessdate=2008-08-04] Sterling and former broadcasting partner Michael Kay commonly work together representing the Yankees; they announce the annual Yankee's Old-Timers' Day,cite web|url=|title=Old Timers gather at the Cathedral|last=Hotch|first=Bryan|date=Auggust 2, 2008|publisher=Major League Baseball (|accessdate=2008-08-03] and preside at "Key to the City" ceremonies following Yankee World Series victories. The pair often serve as masters of ceremonies on and off the field for major Yankee events, including the 2000 ticker-tape parade held in the Yankes' honor after their World Series win.cite news|url=|title=World Champion Yankees Celebration Speech|last=Giuliani|first=Rudolph W.|date=October 29th, 1999|publisher=New York City: Government of|accessdate=2008-08-04] cite news|url=|title=I Love a Parade: Yankees get ticker-tape treatment, City Hall rally|date=January 30, 2000|publisher=Sports Illustrated (Associated Press)|accessdate=2008-08-04]

Announcing mannerisms

Sterling has several idiosyncrasies that mark his broadcasts as distinctive, if also divisive.cite news|url=|title= ON THE YANKEES; The Stadium's Grass Is Greener on the Radio|last=LAPOINTE|first=John|date=October 24, 1998|publisher=New York Times|accessdate=2008-08-04] In addition to a colorful vocal personality, Sterling has distinguished himself for sometimes characterizing plays differently than they may appear and for his announcing errors; habits that spark high feelings in fans and lead to comparisons with announcers like Phil Rizzuto.cite news|url=|title=BROADCAST BOOTH ANOTHER CALLING|last=Mushnik|first=Phil|date=August 15, 2007|publisher=New York Post|language=English|accessdate=2008-08-04] cite web|url=|title=Radio Choice|last=LAPOINTE|first=John|date=October 7, 2007|publisher=New York Times (Baseball Blog)|accessdate=2008-08-04]

Following the final out of a Yankees victory, Sterling calls "Ball game over! Yankees win! Theeeeeee Yankees win!". The length of the word "the" is held longer after dramatic victories, as well as after victories resulting in championships (which Sterling also punctuates by saying the name of whatever series is over). It has been played over the public address system at Yankee Stadium after every Yankees victory for the past several seasons, right before Frank Sinatra's cover of "Theme from New York, New York" is played.cite news|url=|title=The Couch Slouch: Yanks' new yard: The House That Ruthless Built|last=Chad|first=Norman|date=July 6, 2008|work="At the new Yankee Stadium, they no longer will play "Theme from New York, New York" after games."|publisher=Seattle Post-Intelligencer (SeattlePI)|accessdate=2008-08-04] The phrase evolved from Sterling's call of Mel Hall's game-winning three-run homer in the ninth inning on May 27, 1991, to give the Yankees a dramatic Memorial Day win over the Boston Red Sox.cite news|url=|title= BASEBALL; Yanks Take Bus Home, But They're Flying High|last=MARTINEZ|first=Michael|date=May 27, 1991|publisher=New York Times|accessdate=2008-08-04]

One of his signature radio remarks is his home run call "It is high, it is far, it is gone!" Sterling usually follows with one of his patented player nicknames, which have become well-known to the extent that new ones can be highly anticipated:cite news|url=|title=Let's come up with a home run call for Xavier Nady|last=Swan|first=Lisa|coauthors=John Lewin|date=July 29, 2008|publisher=New York Daily News|accessdate=2008-08-04]

;Current Yankees
*Bobby Abreu: "El Comedulce!" and "Bobby Abreu as sweet as candy..."
*Wilson Betemit: "You can bet on Betemit!"
*Robinson Canó: "(Robbie) Cano! Don't you know?", "Cano can do!", and "A Ribbie for Robbie!"
*Johnny Damon: "Positively Damonic!" and "Johnny on the Spot!" and "It's A Johnny's Rocket!"
*Jason Giambi: "The Giambino!""It's a bash from the 'stache"
*Xavier Nady: "X marks the spot!"
*Derek Jeter: "El Capitan!", "a Jeterian swing...", and "a Jeter jolt"
*Hideki Matsui: "A thrilla from Godzilla!", "Hideki, lower-decki!", and "An Upper-Decki by Hideki!"
*Jorge Posada: "Jorgie juiced one!" and "Jorgie jacks one!"
*Alex Rodriguez: "An A-Bomb from A-Rod!" and "Alexander the Great conquers again!"

;Notable former Yankees
*Tino Martinez: "The Bam-Tino!"
*Gary Sheffield: "The Master Sheff!" and "A Sheff Special!"
*Bernie Williams: "Bernie goes boom!" and "Bern baby Bern!"
*Shane Spencer: "Shane Spencer! The Home Run Dispenser!"


Sterling is a resident of Edgewater, New Jersey. [Klapisch, Bob. "Covering All Bases: Radio's John Sterling, Edgewater, calls the hits for Yankee games", "(201)", August 2008, p. 40.] He had previously resided in Teaneck, New Jersey. [Sullivan, Tara. "YANKS' AIR APPARENTS; STERLING, KAY A HIT BEYOND THEIR MIKES", "The Record (Bergen County)", September 17, 1998, accessed April 14, 2007. "It is a labor of love for Sterling, a Teaneck resident who marvels at the gift of combining an 'avocation with my vocation. Baseball is like a melody,' he says. 'It just keeps playing. But I've never been around a season like this."] He is married and the father of 4, including a set of triplets.


External links

* [ New York Yankees biography]
* [ Sterling's Official Blog]

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