Philly Fans: What the Buck?

By Matthew Nadu
|  Friday, Jan 9, 2009  |  Updated 12:01 PM EDT
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Phillies Win World Series

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Some Philly fans wish they could knock that smile off Joe Buck's face.

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"And the Philadelphia Phillies are World Champions."

Philadelphians waited a generation to hear those sweet words come out of someone's mouth.

Anyone's mouth -- anyone who shows enthusiasm, excitement. Someone who puts 28 years into making that call.

Anyone but Joe Buck.

Take notice there's no exclamation point -- Buck doesn't warrant excitement.

Think about all the great sports moments and what do people remember most? The spine tingling calls of the broadcasters.

"The Giants win the Pennant!"

Those classic voice bellowing with excitement, with stamina -- they create the landscape for sports fans' fondest memories.

Broadcasters are supposed to have passion, flair and a true love for the game. They transcend and become as much a part of our beloved teams as even the players themselves.

FOX cheated Philadelphia of our great moment -- Buck cheated Philadelphia so many more times.

Search "Joe Buck" on Google and at least three hate sites show up in the top results.

"I Hate Joe Buck."

A rallying cry that has united countless of fans -- especially in Philadelphia.

Just for a moment forget about the fact that he calls games with no emotion or passion --the reason Philadelphia hates Joe Buck is because Joe Buck hates Philadelphia.

Or, so it seems.

No one knows the reason the son of Cardinals legendary Hall of Fame broadcaster Jack Buck has this vendetta. Perhaps it was a bad cheesesteak, an erratic cab driver or maybe a flight delay.

He takes the basic pleasure that Philadelphia loves and embraces, sports, and makes Rosie O'Donnell seem more bearable.

Joe Buck -- his name alone sends chills down any true Philly fan's spine.

If you honestly think Buck is professional towards Philadelphia than one PhilaPhans blogger puts it best, "you obviously watch the games like my dad does, with the sound off."

Take for instance the final regular season Eagles game -- just two weeks ago.

On that fateful day the Eagles spanked the Cowboys 44-6 -- an old fashion trouncing of the arch rival to secure a wild card birth.

Dallas is the best team in the league. If you didn't know that heading into the game it's true.

Buck said so.

Every time Donovan McNabb threaded a pass through two defenders for a completion it was because the Cowboy's defense was slacking.

When Brian Dawkins sent Tony Romo packing forcing fumble after fumble, it wasn't because he's one of the top safeties in the NFL. No, of course not. It was because the Dallas offensive line let the Eagles get more action with Romo than Jessica Simpson.

During the game Eagles blogs such as bleedinggreennation.com put it simply, "I hate Joe Buck."

Call after call. A missed block here, a slipped tackle there, every call was because Dallas made a mistake not because Philadelphia did something good enough that  "they didn't just win… they won."

That's how Joe ended the Dec. 28 telecast, "they didn't just win… they won."

Yes, Joe, the Eagles won. And, Philadelphians got our own reward -- Joe Buck calling the Wild Card game in Minnesota the very next week.

Another painstaking game absent of the joy of victory -- sucked out by a monotone, excuse making and ear bleeding play-by-play performance from Mr. Buck.

Ear bleeding can be costly -- blood doesn't come out of polyester.

Those Philadelphians who danced around Chickie and Pete's or raced out into the streets to celebrate the Birds 26-14 victory are envied anyone who could actually hear Joe's shoot-me-in-the-face play calling:

"When Samuel returned that INT for a TD, Buck sounded like a family member died. I really think there is a bias. And please don't get me started on his commentary for the NLCS and WS. That was so over the top," wrote one Philly fan

Ah, the Phillies.

Buck has basically admitted that he would rather have been somewhere else yet FOX allowed him to call the MLB playoffs even though he told a radio host he'd rather watch the "Bachelorette" instead of watching a baseball game.

"I'm realistic…. It's not as special or unique as it used to be."

Jack Buck would roll over in his grave, but at least his son's loyal to the network.

Joe might think he's a professional but you can't be a pro on a national broadcast while holding a bias.

The bias against the Phillies throughout the entire NLCS and World Series was heartbreaking.

As beautiful as the ride was for Philadelphians, Joe Buck made it excruciating for fans to stay aboard:

Just look at some of the comments about Buck on Philly.com:
"I hope Joe Buck can show Philly a little more love than he did during the Phillies World Series broadcast... it was ridiculous how blatant the announcers were in their bias toward Tampa Bay and the Dodger"

"Well... he sure seemed more enthusiastic about the OTHER team's HRs and big hits than he did the Phillies'."

"He does suck. I think everyone can agree with that. Every word he said during the World Series was trash."

It started with Joe's love for the Dodgers in the NLCS and no matter how many strikeouts, home runs or wins Philadelphia would accumulate, Joe couldn't fathom how Manny Ramirez couldn't lead Los Angeles to a comeback.

Well Joe he couldn't.

Apparently the World Series script didn't go as planned either because from Game 1 Buck had it out for Philly.

From his non-stop praising of the Rays hitters, the constant recap of the Rays turnaround season and the never-ending use of the "K-Zone," which Joe used to show why Scott Kazmir's borderline balls should be strikes and Cole Hamels' strikes should be balls, it was pure misery.

Buck even led fans to believe that with the Phils up 3-1 after completely shutting down the Rays that Tampa could take advantage of the wet weather to mount a comeback.

There would however be no happy ending for Joe and the Rays. There would be no Miracle Rays and after 25 years there would be no more heartache in Philadelphia.

Thankfully Philadelphia has hit right back at Buck by winning.

So now a once championship starved city finds itself once again in the mix for a championship trophy as the Birds streak through the playoffs.

There is a gift waiting for Eagles fans when the Birds play the New York Giants on Sunday.

What better way to enjoy the road to the Super Bowl than watching Philadelphia at the defending Super Bowl champions on FOX at 1 p.m. with none other than Joe Buck?

Feel free to share how you feel about Buck below.

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