Ernie Harwell

Ernie Harwell


1/25/1918, Washington, Georgia, USA



Birth Name

William Earnest Harwell


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Ernie Harwell was born in Washington, Georgia and began his career at age 16 as the Atlanta correspondent for The Sporting News. After graduating from Emory University in 1940, he was hired as sports editor at WSB, Atlanta. After serving 4 years with the U.S. Marines during World…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

  • Quotes

    • Ernie Harwell: (after every homerun, his signature phrase) That ball is looooong gone!

    • (from his Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on August 2, 1981)
      Ernie Harwell: Baseball is a tongue-tied kid from Georgia growing up to be an announcer and praising the Lord for showing him the way to Cooperstown.

    • (his September 29, 2002 on-air farewell address)
      Ernie Harwell: The Tigers have just finished their 2002 season and I have just finished my baseball broadcasting career and it is time to say goodbye, but I think goodbye's are sad and I'd much rather say 'hello'. Hello to a new adventure. I am not leaving folks. I'll still be with you, living my life in Michigan, my home state surrounded by family and friends. And rather than goodbye allow me to say thank you. Thank you for letting me be part of your family. Thank you for taking me with you to that cottage up north, to the beach, the picnic, your workplace, and your backyard. Thank you for sneaking your transistor under the pillow as you grew up loving the Tigers. Now I might have been a small part of your life, but you've been a very large part of mine and it's my privilege to share with you the greatest game of all. Now God has a new adventure for me and I'm ready to move on. So I leave you with a deep sense of appreciation for your loyalty and support. I thank you very much and God bless all of you.

    • Ernie Harwell: I'm not leaving, folks. I'll still be with you, living my life in Michigan, my home state, surrounded by family and friends.

    • Ernie Harwell: The Tigers have just finished their 2002 season. And I've just finished my baseball broadcasting career, and it's time to say good-bye. But I think good-byes are sad, and I'd much rather say hello. Hello to a new adventure.

    • Ernie Harwell: The greatest single moment I've ever known in Detroit was Jim Northrup's triple in the seventh game of the World Series in St. Louis. It was a stunning moment because not only were the Tigers winning a world championship that meant so much to an entire city, they were beating the best pitcher I ever saw—Bob Gibson.

    • Ernie Harwell: I think once you start as an announcer, you have to decide what kind of approach you're going to have. I decided very early that I was going to be a reporter, that I would not cheer for the team. I don't denigrate people who do it. It's fine. I think you just have to fit whatever kind of personality you have, and I think my nature was to be more down the middle and that's the way I conducted the broadcasts.

    • Ernie Harwell: I think I owe thanks to the people who have listened to me over the years, who tuned in on the radio. They have given me a warmth and loyalty that I've never been able to repay. The way they have reached out to me has certainly been the highlight of my life.

    • Ernie Harwell: I love the game because it's so simple, yet it can be so complex. There's a lot of layers to it, but they aren't hard to peel back.

    • Ernie Harwell: If I walked back into the booth in the year 2025, I don't think it would have changed much. I think baseball would be played and managed pretty much the same as it is today. It's a great survivor.

    • Ernie Harwell: I'd like to be remembered as someone who showed up for the job. I consider myself a worker. I love what I do. If I had my time over again, I'd probably do it for nothing.

    • Ernie Harwell: I had a job to do, and I did it all these years to the best of my ability. That's what I'd like to leave behind as I finish my final game in Toronto.

    • Ernie Harwell: God blessed me by putting me here for thirty-one years at Michigan and Trumbull. I had the greatest job in the world—a job I loved to do. But most of all, I appreciate you fans. I appreciate your loyalty, your support and your love that you've shown me, especially the love.

    • Ernie Harwell: Baseball is a lot like life. It's a day-to-day existence, full of ups and downs. You make the most of your opportunities in baseball as you do in life.