Bill King is the newest Oakland Athletic to enter the Hall of Fame. Chosen as this year’s Ford C. Frick award winner, King enters The Hall for his excellence in broadcasting. Finally! Although an announcer for both the Raiders and the Warriors, today’s honor is strictly based on his 25 years of service for Major League Baseball and the Athletics.
King passed away unexpectedly in 2005 after a long career in the Bay Area, with many teams benefiting from his insightful commentating amidst broadcasting play by plays. When Bill broadcast, you could see every movement. He’d mention things that fans wouldn’t normally consider (an umpire’s glance, a manager’s deviation from a pattern, slight movements in the bullpen). Like many, I loved listening to games more than watching them on TV in part because I learned so much. And, I never left home without my radio when heading to the Coliseum. His love of the game, the Athletics and the Bay Area was palpable.
The Ford C. Frick Award is voted on annually and is named in memory of Ford Frick who was not only a broadcaster but the National League President (1934-1951) and 3rd Commissioner of Baseball from 1951-1965. To be considered, one must have served for at least 10 consecutive years as a Major League Baseball broadcaster with either a team and/or network. Bill King’s quarter of a century with the Athletics definitely meets that criteria as did 200 other potential winners. On Saturday, July 29th, the award will be bestowed on Bill King.