Milo Hamilton calls final game tonight

HOUSTON, TX -- Houston Astros Hall of Fame broadcaster Milo Hamilton called his final game tonight as the Astros hosted the St. Louis Cardinals at Minute Maid Park.

During the 7th-inning stretch, Hamilton gave a warm farewell speech to the Minute Maid Park crowd to a standing ovation.

This season marks Hamilton’s 59th as a Major League broadcaster, which is second all-time to Dodgers legend and Hall of Famer Vin Scully, who is in his 64th season. Hamilton has been the radio voice of the Houston Astros since 1985. In 1992, he earned the ultimate honor for broadcasting excellence when he received the prestigious Ford C. Frick Award from the National Baseball Hall of Fame. In April of this season, Hamilton broadcast the Astros three-game series from the Miami Marlins new ballpark, marking the 59th Major League ballpark he has broadcast from.  

Before the start of the 2012 season, Hamilton announced that this would be his last season calling games.

Hamilton has received dozens of awards during his long, distinguished career. On September 2nd, which was his 85th birthday, Hamilton was inducted into the Houston Media Wall of Honor by the Astros on what was Milo Hamilton Day. In April, he was among the first  class inducted into the Astros new Walk of Fame, which is located on the Texas Ave. sidewalk outside of Minute Maid Park. In 2009, he was named “King of Baseball” by Minor League Baseball during the 2009 MLB Winter Meetings in Indianapolis, IN. Also in 2009, in recognition of his 25th season with the club, the City of Houston renamed a street outside of Minute Maid Park as ‘Milo Hamilton Way.’

Earlier in his career, while calling games for the Atlanta Braves, Hamilton was in the radio booth for Hank Aaron’s historic 715th home run. Hamilton’s call is one of the most replayed highlights in sports history. Hamilton has called several of the most memorable moments in Astros history, including Craig Biggio’s 3,000th hit, the Astros pennant-clinching win in Game 6 of the 2005 NLCS at Busch Stadium, Chris Burke’s dramatic, 18th-inning, walk-off home run in Game 4 of the 2005 NLDS and the Astros historic, six-pitcher, combined no-hitter at Yankee Stadium in June of 2003. Hamilton has called 11 no-hitters overall in his career.

“A BLUE STAR GALA”

The Astros will also honor Hamilton with A Blue Star Gala, which will be held on the field at Minute Maid Park on Tuesday, October 16. The night will be a gathering of many former Major League star players that have been touched by Hamilton, including baseball legend and Hall of Famer Hank Aaron, whose record-breaking 715th home run was called by Hamilton in 1974.

Many former Astros players, including Craig Biggio, Larry Dierker, Enos Cabell, Jimmy Wynn, Phil Garner and Billy Doran will be in attendance along with Astros Owner and Chairman Jim Crane. The night will also include special video tributes from former President George H.W. Bush with wife Barbara, Emmy Award-winning sportscaster Bob Costas and Hall of Fame broadcasters Scully, Bob Uecker and Marty Brennaman.

Proceeds from the night benefit the Astros In Action Foundation. Sponsorship packages and tickets for the gala can be purchased at www.astros.com/community or by calling 713-259-8975. Sponsorships begin at $5,000 and individual tickets start at $150.

On Milo Hamilton: Astros Broadcasting Legend

MLB Commissioner Alan (Bud) Selig

“On behalf of Major League Baseball, I am honored to congratulate you on your outstanding career. You are among the finest broadcasters our game has ever known. For generations, there has been a special bond between baseball fans and their announcers. I have the utmost appreciation for all that you have done to bring our fans closer to the game and to impart your reverence for the sport on to your listeners. Please accept my best wishes. I look forward to our paths crossing in the near future so that I may congratulate you in person.”

Astros Owner and Chairman Jim Crane

“We have been extremely fortunate to have Milo as a part of our organization. An entire generation of Astros fans have grown up listening to Milo. He truly is an icon and is synonymous with Astros baseball. That voice is going to be really hard to replace on the radio, because when you think of the Astros, you think of Milo. He’s been a great asset for the Astros and the city.”

Dodgers HOF broadcaster Vin Scully

“When I think of Milo, I realize that we have known each other for close to 60 years. He has been a friend to me. When I think of a successful sports announcer, I think of someone who is fair, accurate, friendly, prepared, well-informed, interesting and maybe even a little entertaining. I can apply all those merits to Milo. Congratulations on a magnificent career and thanks for your friendship for all these years.”

Brewers HOF broadcaster Bob Uecker

“Milo’s career has been nothing short of outstanding, unbelievable. I’m happy that I was able to be a small part of it. Although I would like to apologize to him for having to call some of the games I played in. I know that was not very good. He has been a great credit to the game and a good friend. I send my congratulations to Milo. Baseball is going to miss him.”

Giants broadcaster and former pitcher Mike Krukow

“When I was in Chicago, we did not have a very good team. But, we had a great broadcaster. The definition of genius is the ability to take something that is very hard and make it look easy. Milo had a way of making us look good, even though we were not. He’s a Hall of Famer. I don’t know of any better way to describe him. Over the years, I’ve enjoyed crossing paths with him as a broadcaster. We are going to miss him.”

Reds Hall of Fame broadcaster Marty Brennaman

“I’ve known Milo since 1966, after meeting him as a young reporter at that time while he was in Atlanta. He gave me all the time I needed and talked about what it was like to be a big league broadcaster. I’ve never forgotten that. We’ve been friends ever since. It’s incredible the number of years he’s been a Major League broadcaster. After all these years, he is still able to provide Astros fans with a beautiful word picture. Congratulations, my friend.”

Former Astros player Craig Biggio

“There’s always a part of you that never wants to see it ever end. Obviously, things can’t last forever, and I think Milo’s legacy and the things he’s been able to do on the air have touched a lot of people and a lot of homes. Milo has been great for the Houston Astros and I was fortunate to have him calling our games during my entire career.” 

Former Astros broadcaster and pitcher Larry Dierker (spent several seasons in the booth with Milo)

“The thing I admired the most about Milo was his passion and energy. I remember we played a very long game, and I asked if he’d like for me to cover the play-by-play by around the 16th inning. He declined and said he’d be fine. He never got tired. His energy and passion was unrivaled. He was amazing in that way.”