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Yankees' 'Voice of God' dies at 99

Emma Brown

Bob Sheppard, the iconic Yankee Stadium announcer who was known as the "Voice of God" for his introductions of baseball stars over more than half a century, has died. He was 99.

Mr. Sheppard's debut as the New York Yankees' announcer was April 17, 1951, when players included Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Yogi Berra. He stayed with the team until 2007, and the team still uses his recorded introduction for Derek Jeter.

"When you hear his slow, dignified speech, which has such cadence you think every pitching change is the Gettysburg Address, you wonder whether its divine quality is holding the foundation of this old ballpark together," wrote Stephen Borelli on the USA Today web site.

Here's a tribute to Mr. Sheppard from the year of his retirement:

By Emma Brown  |  July 11, 2010; 12:09 PM ET
Categories:  Athletes , Emma Brown  | Tags: bob sheppard yankees announcer died, voice of god died, yankees announcer died, yankees voice of god  
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has dedicated his new baseball/poetry -related play to his long time St John's Univsrsity office mate!

It is
"Hank Greenberg Google Edna St Vincent Millay"

the "Voice of the Yankees"'s wife was always fascinated by
'thter people' like flashy, sassy dramatist MYERS!

Mr Sheppard was not short on giving Dr Myers advice-- CLEAN YOUR DESK! Use ALL your speaking voice a la stentorian Shakespearean tones ...I often heard MYERS & Shepard chattering away about the bard of Avon.

We understand Al Pacino's
ex step Mom is playing Edna in Hollywood!
with her handsome husband as Greenberg! They recently were in West Hollywood table readings of MYERS plays!

Posted by: dramaman | July 11, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

If only our home team had a PA announcer with 1/10th of the class of Bob Sheppard. I suppose we can't really blame the man because he is told to bleet out his cheesey introduction in his infantile manner by team president Stan Kasten. It diminishes the experience at the ballpark and makes the Washington Nationals look like the Macon Whoopees. We are the nation's capital, not the Pontotoc county fair in Ada, Oklahoma. (No offence OK). We deserve an announcer commensurate with the position, not Herb Tarlek from WKRP. Ever wonder why teams like Boston and NY don't feel the need to embellesh player intros? RIP Bob Sheppard. We hate the Yankees but we honor you and the class you brought to baseball.

Posted by: Natstoyou | July 11, 2010 6:57 PM | Report abuse

I know that I am one among millions of New Yorkers (whether Yankee fans or not) who are saddened by the loss of Mr. Sheppard. For generations of us, Mr. Sheppard was as much a part of the Yankee experience as the trip to the Bronx, the classic stadium architecture, the very pinstripes themselves! The baseball world and the academic world are fortunate to have been graced by Mr. Sheppard's talent and gentility for so many years. RIP.

Also, I find it classy and touching that Derek Jeter has continued to use Mr. Sheppard's introduction even after his retirement. I hope Jeter continues to do so for the remainder of his career.

Posted by: nan_lynn | July 11, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

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