Arlon Bennett, Mets fan and musician will be on Baseball Talk tomorrow at 12:25 p.m. (EST). Baseball Talk airs "LIVE" on Sundays from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m. on the Blog Talk Radio Network. If you have questions about the Mets or Bennett’s relationship with the late-great Bob Murhpy, get them ready.
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Until then, see you in the radio booth.
Here’s a story about Summer’s Voice
“I’ve been a Major Leaguer for 20 years and I’ve never meet a nicer person than Bob Murphy.” – John Franco
Baseball, the greatest game played, becomes greater because of the broadcaster. When musician Arlon Bennett decided to write and record a song on Bob Murphy, the late Mets’ broadcaster, he wanted to make sure it meant something more than just baseball. The “Summer’s Voice” came to light because of his love for the New York Mets and being a fan of Murphy.
In the early years of Murphy’s career, he rotated between the TV and radio booth with Lindsey Nelson and Ralph Kiner. But, it was the radio booth were Murphy made the game come alive. He had a genuine and sincere attitude for the game, with his trademark saying: "a beautiful day for baseball." Murphy was with the team since it began in 1962. He was in the Mets’ broadcast booth for over 50 years. He will always be remembered as the Mets’ voice. Murphy’s first broadcast began on April 11, 1962, with:
“This is Bob Murphy welcoming you to the first regular season game in the history of the New York Mets. Tonight the New York Mets meet the St. Louis Cardinals right here in St. Louis.”
Bennett’s hard work on recording the song paid off. The Mets honored the late Murphy on August 19th of this past year, with a tribute that included his song “Summer’s Voice.” I had the chance to interview Bennett about his Major League experience and he said finally he gave something back to the fans.
Here are some of Bennett’s responses:
JB: Actually, what inspired you to write the song?
AB: Bob was always a part of my life growing up. His voice was the Mets to me.
JB: What was the feeling you had, when they played it at Shea Stadium?
AB: H ey! I gave something back.
JB: How long have you liked the Mets?
AB: For many years.
JB: What do you think of the Mets today and Omar Minaya?
AB: He’s doing what we got to do to get players in here and a vision for the future that includes a championship. He realizes that we need talent, people in the seats and wins to make the playoffs. Dare we beat Atlanta this year??
JB: What projects are you working on now?
AB: A new CD, but very busy with performances and such.
So, as Bennett continues to record he’ll always be remembered to the baseball world as the “Summer’s Voice,” which is the new title of his not-yet-released CD, in tribute to Bob Murphy – a great baseball broadcaster and a great person.
Murphy’s final radio broadcast came on September 25, 2003, at Shea Stadium. It went like this:
“I’ll say goodbye now to everybody. Stay well out there, wherever you might be. I’ve enjoyed the relationship with you.”
Some of Bob Murhpy’s classic calls from the radio booth of the New York Mets, in a press release on MLB.com:
"And it’s hit hard to leftfield…It’s going to be a base hit…A base hit by Jimmy Qualls and it breaks up the perfect game…Now the applause for Tom Seaver…Eight and one third innings of perfect baseball by Seaver." – Murphy’s call of Jimmy Qualls single to left off Tom Seaver on July 9, 1969. The hit snapped Seaver’s perfect game. Tom Terrific would finish with a complete-game, one-hit, 4-0 shutout over the Cubs.
"The crowd is chanting, ‘We’re number one!’ The Mets made up fifteen-and-a-half games since the 13th of August. Lou Brock is on second, and Vic Davalillo, the runner on first with one man out…ninth inning, 6-0, New York. Gentry pitching, working hard here against Joe Torre. Now in the set position, here’s the pitch…ground ball hit to shortstop…Harrelson to Weiss, there’s one, first base…Double play…The Mets Win! It’s All Over! Ohhhh, the roar going up from this crowd! An unbelievable scene on the field…fans are pouring out on the field." – Murphy’s call of the final out to give the Mets the 1969 NL Eastern Division crown on September 24, 1969 with a 6-0 win vs. St. Louis at Shea.
"Now the stretch by McGraw…the 3-2 delivery…the runner goes…a little pop up…Milner’s got it…he’ll run to first…Double play! The Mets win the pennant! The Mets have just won the pennant in the Eastern Division! It’s all over! They won the pennant with a magnificent stretch drive." – Murphy’s call of the final out in a 6-4 win vs. Chicago at Wrigley Field to give the Mets the National League Eastern Division title on October 1, 1973, in game number 161.
"Ground ball to the right side of the infield…Backman has it…to Hernandez…The Mets win it!…It’s over." – Murphy’s call of the final out in New York’s 4-2 win over the Cubs to clinch the 1986 National League Eastern Division.
"Lenny Dykstra, the man they call Nails on the Mets ballclub is waiting…Now the pitch and it’s a high fly ball hit to rightfield…It’s fairly deep…It’s way back, by the wall…A home run!! A home run!! The Mets win the ballgame…Dykstra wins it…Len Dykstra hit a home run…This ballgame is over…Lenny Dykstra is being mobbed by his teammates." – Murphy’s call of Lenny Dykstra’s ninth inning game-winning home run at Shea which gave the Mets a 6-5 win over Houston in Game Three of the 1986 NLCS.
"Mookie Wilson still hopes to win it for New York…3-2 the count…And the pitch by Stanley…And a ground ball trickling…It’s a fair ball. It gets by Buckner! Rounding third is Knight…The Mets will win the ballgame…They win! They win!" – Murphy’s call of the most famous E3 in the history of the franchise in Game Six of the 1986 World Series as New York rallies to beat Boston, 6-5, in 10 innings, to tie the Series at three games apiece on October 25, 1986.
"Now the pitch on the way…He struck him out!…Struck him out! The Mets have won the World Series! The dream has come true. The Mets have won the World Series coming from behind to win the seventh game." – Murphy’s call of the final out of the 1986 World Series which gave New York its second title on October 27, 1986.
"Here’s the pitch on the way to Bonds…Fly ball to center…Can he run it down…On the run, Payton…Makes the catch…It’s all over…The Mets win it!!! Jay Payton makes the catch…A one-hit shutout by Bobby Jones…And they’re all racing to the mound and mobbing Bobby Jones…What a magnificent game…The Mets have never had a better game pitched it their 39-year history than this game pitched by Bobby Jones." – Murphy’s call of the final out from Bobby Jones’ complete-game, one-hit, 4-0 shutout over the San Francisco Giants in Game Four of the 2000 National League Division Series. The win sent the Mets to the NLCS for the first time since 1988.
"A fly ball well hit to rightfield…on the run….going back…looking for it…Can’t get it…off the wall…Extra base hit…Three runs are going to score. Three runs come in on a drive off the right-centerfield wall by Todd Zeile. The Mets now have a 6-0 lead." – Murphy’s call on To dd Zeile’s bases loaded, bases clearing double in the fourth inning of Game Five of the National League Championship vs. St. Louis on October 16, 2000. New York would defeat St. Louis 7-0 that night to advance to the World Series.
You can visit Arlon Bennett’s website at: www.arlonbennett.com
His two other CD’s are: “The Watch Man” and “Fountain of Dreams.”