Lets jump into the wayback machine boys and girls. It’s 1983. I’m a sophomore in high school looking to crack the varsity baseball team. My kid brother is training to become a professional Super Mario Bro’s player. My mother is dealing with a Cabbage Patch doll addiction, and my sister is locked in her room doing the FlashDance workout. And Joe Castiglione is sitting down at the Mic at Fenway for the first time.
Lost in the furry that was Carl Yastrzemski’s final season, a young man was starting his career in Boston. Back in the day we didn’t have the interwebs to hunt down every tidbit of info on people the way we do now. All I knew at the time was the new sox radio guy was from Hamden, Connecticut . Brilliant ! We would have one of our own as a made man. I thought this would be pretty cool. Living in Connecticut meant Being on the front lines of the Red Sox Yankees War. Hey in the 80’s you took what you could get. I didn’t realize that Joe would become the voice of the Sox for my generation.
But that’s what Joe became. The voice of a generation. When I was a kid I hid under my covers to listen to Ken Coleman on my green transistor radio. That’s where most people of my age go when waxing romantic about sports. Not me, it’s Joe. I had no idea at the time I we would get to listen to his melodically perfect voice for forty years. That for four decades when i was on the road it would be Joe that got me from point A to point B. or it would be his dulcet tones that would make that July i just finished cutting the lawn beer taste even better than I had hoped. Never mind the cure for listening to Tony Mazz in the booth in 2022. But he is. And I’m so very grateful.
Joe Castiglione may have missed Game Six in 75. He wasn’t in the booth in ’78 for Bucky bleeping dent. But he felt the pain in 86 as Buckner let that ball bounce through his legs and he was there in 2004 when the Sox beat the yankees in the greatest comeback in Sports History. And later crushed the curse of the Bambino. And every title 07,13,18 since; he was there for Big Mo and Manny being Manny. He was there for every clutch Home run David Ortiz hit. and Dave Roberts Steal heard round the world. And he always made room in the car for all of us. Thank you Joe. Thank you for every “ Can you Believe it “ moment you shared with us.