John Rooney News

Friday, September 2, 2005, 9:05 pm

Tonight’s Radio Broadcast News

WSCR Radio and the White Sox announced tonight that Ed Farmer had agreed to move to White Sox radio broadcasts next year on WSCR radio, while long-time partner John Rooney informed the club that he would not be returning to the Sox booth.

It is safe to say we all are disappointed.  When the move to WSCR was announced, everyone hoped John and Ed (both of whose contracts were up after this season) would decide to move with the team.  It certainly was the goal of the White Sox.  It is tough to beat the duo.

Through his agent, who spoke to WSCR, and face-to-face with club employees this week and earlier today, John said he was not returning.

Of course he will be missed personally and professionally.  Johnrooney Many people, myself included, believe he is among the very best play-by-play voices in the game.  In reading posts on-line tonight, many Sox fans share their appreciation for John’s work at the microphone.  He is a very comfortable listen.  He also is a personal friend after working together since 1991 (when I joined the team).  I have not had a chance to speak with John tonight given the game but do wish him the very best in whatever is next.

The next step is for WSCR and the White Sox to develop a list of possible replacements.  Farmer currently does several innings of play-by-play calling each evening, so the early thought was to move him to full-time play-by-play and find a color commentator.  It will be a challenge to replace John, but let’s see who all the possible candidates might be and go from there.


Thats sad to hear. As a younger fan I equate radio to Farmer and Rooney. Best of luck Rooney. You’re a class act.

That’s just really bad news. I feel like John Rooney is a great friend. I’ve listened to every game this year on the radio, except the ones I’ve attended in person. And sometimes I take my radio to those. I even listen to the radio when I watch games on TV.. Even with the delay, it’s the best option. Nuff said about that. And John Rooney makes Ed Farmer sound good. I’m not so sure that Farmer without Rooney is going to work. When Farmer starts waxing patriotic or tooting his own horn or talking about how he’s afraid to go to Canada, Rooney makes him sound funny instead of crazy. Rooney is the substance of that duo, a real professional, a real class act. This was one area, off the field, where we could say the White Sox truly had the best. It’s a real pity.

*sheds tears*

I’m sorry to hear that John Rooney is leaving. He is one of the best play-by-play announcers in the business. I do have a ready-made replacement for him, and he’s already done PBP for the Sox and is currently with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays: Dave Wills.

John Rooney IS the voice of the White Sox and we’ll all miss him! He’s been as comfortable as an old shoe and breaking in a new person will be a pain (like a new shoe).
I’ll second the replacement candidacy of Dave Wills. This guy bleeds Sox Black and Silver in his veins and we need “family” people on the airways as well. The Sox have been bringing back ex players, let’s have Willsie back as well.

This makes me sad. I love Rooney. But please, whatever you do, don’t let Bill Melton take his place. Please, no Melton.

But I love the idea of Wills. He is a true Sox fan.

I liked rooney. the idea of dave wills is pretty good, ron kittle would also be a good fresh voice…ive seen him do TV and he is very good. i agree with no melton-i like bill but i think i can only take about as much as we see of him now. as for the game tonight- it was the best game ive been to in a long time. the offense was great freddy was great and i think the best part of the whole thing was there wasnt all that many people there. call me crazy but i enjoy the game more when there is only 20-25 thousand. HATE THE BIG CROWDS!

I liked rooney. the idea of dave wills is pretty good, ron kittle would also be a good fresh voice…ive seen him do TV and he is very good. i agree with no melton-i like bill but i think i can only take about as much as we see of him now. as for the game tonight- it was the best games ive been to in a long time. the offense was great freddy was great and i think the best part of the whole thing was there wasnt all that many people there. call me crazy but i enjoy the game more when there is only 20-25 thousand. HATE THE BIG CROWDS!

You know what’s going to happen to Rooney, dontcha? The Cubs will offer him what he’s worth. After 5 minutes in the booth at Wrigley he’ll become a national legend. He’ll show up on national sports and comedy programs as “the voice of the Cubbies.” After a decade or so he’ll be preserved in Bronze at Clark and Addison and a chain of restaurants called Rooney’s Steak House will open in River North and at O’Hare, before going national. And no one, but us few pathetic souls, will remember that he once called games for the White Sox. Why do I feel like I’ve had this nightmare once before?

It’s a goner.

Rooney was a great primary voice for the White Sox. IMO he was/is to the Sox what Bob Uecker is to the Brewers. Farmer doesn’t have that “gregarious” voice that is necessary for a primary broadcaster.

As a young fan, I have not heard Dave Wills’ voice, but I would not want Ron Kittle as a primary announcer simply because combining his voice with Farmer’s would not sound very good.

Willsy is an obvious choice, but why are we so eager to seal Rooney’s casket? This is not okay. We need to fight for John Rooney. He’s the best in the game and we’re losing him and if the fans make their voice heard, WSCR might wake up to its mistake.

This is horrible news! John is the reason I mute my TV, even if there is a delay! This will ruin my season! I don’t know who is at fault (most likely the Score >:o ), but let John know how we feel! I have never been so bummed, I feel like one of my friends died


Mr. Reinsdorf-

Don’t do this to us again! First Harry and Jimmy, Jim Durham with the Bulls. John and Ed, best in A.L.

FIX THIS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!


This is bad news. John Rooney has become the voice of the White Sox. Like Milo Hamilton and Bob Elson, John and Ed make White Sox games what they are… great to listen to.

I would never go to a game without them plugged into my head… and I’ve been going to between 20 and 25 each season for 25 years.

Let’s see what we can do to get John to stay.

Reinsdorf should have intervened.

As usual, Reinsdorf is indifferent when it really matters.

This guy Rooney is one of best in the biz.

bottom line $$$$$$

I like the idea of getting Wills. I don’t like the idea of Farmer doing paly-by-play. I like Ed but come on….

If one of them had to go, I wish it had been Farmer. He’s just annoying. I will sign the petition to keep John, but I wonder if he didn’t decide not to come back because of Farmer. Maybe he’s tired of listening to his weird ramblings as well. John, sorry to see you go. You’ll be missed.

Rooney and Farmio are hands down the best pair the Sox have ever had. John Rooney will be missed.

I was sorry to hear Rooney is leaving. I thought the newspaper reports were pretty clear though – the club negotiated the WSCR deal so that the announcers would not get a pay cut (always a possibility when a new station gets broadcast rights). John wanted more money than was offered, didn’t get it, so he’s leaving. I can’t blame him, but I also can’t blame WSCR. If the ratings don’t generate the ad revenue to justify the salary, they shouldn’t pay. It’s too bad, but it’s business. As long as Ed Farmer isn’t stuck with an inarticulate clown like poor Pat Hughes is, the radio broadcasts will be just fine.

This is terrible news. John Rooney is a class act. Ed Farmer, on the other hand, never met a word which comes out of his own mouth that he didn’t like. Never heard somebody talk so much and say so little, except about himself and his own playing days and his knowledge about “everything.” I cringe during Farmer’s play-by-play even now, in that monotonous yet never-ending monotone. The thought of him doing more play-by-play is too much to bear. Can Farmer, and keep Rooney at any cost!!!!

rblack, you got that right. “Farmio” puts me right to sleep, when he isn’t annoying me. He seems to think Sox broadcasts are a forum for him to discuss whatever pops into his head. He doesn’t even live in Chicago for crying out loud. We can only hope that eventually someone in the organization gets as tired of him as we are.

this is just a shame. first we lose harry then now this i am about to turn 33 i share a season ticket with some one
i love gthe job the players have done this year but it won’t be the same to listen to the games next year.

jerry please if you love the game keep one of its best play by play radio guys.

Robert, you’re right that poor pat hughes is stuck with an inarticulate clown.

And so is Ron Santo.

I’m sick of the White Sox being a farm team for baseball greats who go elsewhere, like Harry Caray and Tony LaRussa. We’ve got to keep Rooney. There’s no way to justify it as “business.” It’s just bad.

Find me a petition to sign.
John Rooney is the best radio

play by play guy in the business. We must prevail.

Let’s do what we can to overturn this decision and preserve the professionalism that John brings to our ballclub

John Rooney:

Thanks for the years of broadcasting my favorite team, the Chicago White Sox. Your sense of humor added to the description of the games, especially your puns (you got a lot of mileage out of the Bartlett pear/pair line).

The webcasts (audio and video) are the connection to my Southside roots during my travels showing that “you can come home again” and in the meantime “Sweet Home Chicago” was just a mouse click away.

You were that tenth man, the fan in the lucky seat, the one with the hometown cheer that could squeeze out a run, an out —- whatever it took to get the victory. Also the soothing voice when “one got away” giving assurance that “we would get them next time” for tomorrow is another day and it is still “just a game”.

Best of luck in your next venture, thanks again . . . .

I agree that we shouldn’t just accpet this as a done deal. Are those people at the SCR crazy!!? John Rooney is the best voice in Baseball!! Period. Better than Jon Miller, better than Uecker better than (fill in the blank). I would think the Sox organization has some say, don’t they? Dave Wills is okay, but why shouldn’t we as World Champions have the best radio broadcast tem in the nation. It can’t be too late. Keep Rooney!

Here’s what we can all look forward to. (in a grumpy, modified McCarver cadence) he likes the first pitch bla bla Charlie Weis bla bla bla He likes the first pitch bla bla I went to mass bla bla he likes the first pitch bla bla sign your drivers license bla bla bla he likes the first pitch bla bla bla notre dame bla bla bla bla bla he likes the first pitch bla. A wealth of baseball knowledge as a pitcher and as a scout is some where in that head. It may take another decade next to John Rooney to learn how to spit it out without having to hear the rest of it. The next time you are asked an obvious question, answer it with one of these…Does a bear s— in the woods?… or Is Ed Farmer catholic?… time to turn the sound up on the television set. Congratulations to the world champs… Go White Sox!

OK. I just heard that John Rooney will be joining the Cardinals broadcast team next season. Sounds like everyone loves this guy. I’m sure he will fit in nicely here.

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