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News » Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-16

Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-16

Philadelphia Phillies Inside Pitch 2009-04-16
Without a baseball game to manage Tuesday, Charlie Manuel sat in his hotel room in northern Virginia and thought about Harry Kalas.

Mostly, he thought about the legendary voice that always captured his attention.

"His voice controlled your interest," the Phillies manager said. "It didn't really matter what he was saying. I just liked to hear him. I used to watch (HBO's 'Inside the NFL') just because of Harry. It wasn't because I needed to know the scores. I already knew the scores. Seriously, I just wanted to hear him deliver it.

"If I had something to do, I would stay in my house until after it was over, and then, I'd do what I had to do. I think he could announce anything he wanted to and people would listen. I saw him do commercials and it was real good. He could do whatever he chose to do because of his voice. He was that good."

Two days after Kalas died of cardiovascular disease while preparing to call the opener of a series at Nationals Park, Manuel and players were still sharing their favorite stories about the longtime broadcaster. Manuel said Kalas was the primary topic of conversation Tuesday night when he spoke to members at Wilmington Country Club.

And before Wednesday night's game was rained out, circular black "HK" patches had been sewn onto the Phillies' jerseys, just above the heart. The Phillies will wear the patches for the rest of the season.

"I thought it would be probably on the sleeve," Manuel said. "I like where it's at. I think that's great. For us to wear it all season, that's definitely an honor to him. Everywhere we'd go, he was the emcee. Harry was very popular. He was big-time. He was bigger than the Phanatic. Seriously, I can't say enough about him."

The Phillies also announced several tributes to Kalas that will be planned for Friday night and throughout the season. Among them, the home television booth at Citizens Bank Park will be renamed the "Harry Kalas Broadcast Booth, 'That ball's outta here!'" Kalas' sons, Todd, Brad and Kane, will throw ceremonial first pitches, and Kalas' signature will be displayed on the field during the Phillies' upcoming seven-game homestand.

Also, a video of Kalas singing "High Hopes" will be shown on the left field video screen, and throughout the remainder of the season, a billboard honoring Kalas will be displayed on the outfield wall. Kalas' legendary "Outta here!" call will be played over the public-address system after every Phillies home run for the rest of the season.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 16, 2009

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