To Whom It May Concern:
If you’re reading this, it has happened. For years, I was able to agree with the majority, conform to the popular opinion. I would laugh and tweet about mispronunciations, misstatement of facts and general ineptitude. I would mute the TV and deal with the audio and video being out of sync because I thought I was supposed to. I fought valiantly, but ultimately I was just delaying the inevitable.
With last night’s walk off home run by Carlos Santana, a new era of my life began. An era in which I will not be silent. I will not follow for the sake of following. I will not be shamed into silencing my opinions.
As of today, the eighteenth of June in the year 2016, I officially enjoy Matt Underwood’s home run calls.
I think it all started back in 2013. It was a special year for the Tribe, both on the field and in the booth. Jason Giambi hit a pinch-hit, walk-off home run against the Chicago White Sox on July 29th. Matt’s call was good.
Then, on September 24th, Giambi came up to bat in the bottom of the ninth, down 1, with a runner on second and two outs against those same White Sox. Big players make big plays at big times. Matt Underwood was a big player that night.
And it was from that point on that I knew. I knew this day would come. And while I wasn’t necessarily eager for it to get here, I was no longer actively fighting it. So I watched, a silent supporter, a sleeper cell in a sea of negativity. For two full seasons, I kept my feelings to myself. Last night was the straw that broke the camel’s back, the final nail in the coffin, the point of no return. I knew it in 2013. I confirmed it three years later. I’m a fan of Matt Underwood’s home run calls and I don’t care who knows it.
Now, is he perfect? Far from it. He’s thought that a 200-foot fly ball has been a home run before, and he’ll think that a 200-foot fly ball is going to be a home run again. Players names will be mispronounced. Innings, counts and outs will be incorrectly stated. Words that aren’t a part of the English language will be used. He’s a flawed broadcaster, certainly. But isn’t everyone? Outside of the great Vin Scully, I challenge you to find a broadcaster that hasn’t switched the balls and strikes when reading the count, confused two brother’s first names or gotten a couple of replays wrong. These things happen, and they happen to everyone.
So from now on, I will not be silent. Life is too short to do things just because other people are doing them. I will openly enjoy every Indians home run described to me by Matt Underwood. I hope this letter gives other fans out there the courage to do the same.
Roll damn Tribe and Keep the Chief,