Dick Stockton Wants You To Stay In The Game

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↵We all know veteran play-by-play man Dick Stockton is a pro’s pro, but did you realize he is also quite a man’s man? ↵

↵There’s no other way to describe the sage bit of wisdom dropped by Stockton during the eighth inning of Saturday’s Angels and Yankees game. Stockton is still going strong in the booth, even into his mid-to-late sixties, and two pitches before an Alex Rodriguez home run in the late stages of an Angels victory over the Yankees, Stockton gave the older chaps in the viewing audience a little life advice. ↵

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↵No lower-third chyron with a graphic of a man peppering up his salt. No obnoxious Valspar-like paint apparatus swiping across the screen with black hair dye dripping from its bristles. This was just Dick Stockton, serving the aging public, telling us how to stay in the game. ↵

↵Lady killing. ↵

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↵Sure it reads like it was handed to him on a card at the appropriate time, and yes he clearly could have tied in the plug a little better to the conversation -- with a reference to the disabled list coming before the plug, he could have used that as a hook to ‘stay in the game,’ or simply used the fact that A-Rod’s Yankees were trailing at the time and looking to get back into the game -- but those are just hindsight-is-20/20 details. The spirit of the message was there. ↵

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↵Are you old? Are you in need of a little help to ‘stay in the game?’ How could you not take Stockton up on this sensible advice? ↵

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↵And Stockton should know. When he met his longtime wife Lesley Visser, she was in her early twenties and he more than 10 years her elder. And it was the middle of the free-swinging '70s. If anyone would know how to stay in the game, it’d be a man who has been married to the same woman for more than a quarter century, right? ↵

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↵Wait. This is starting to sound like I don’t like the ad campaign, when, in fact, I love it. It really is genius. For years, Fox has smacked us in the face with so many plugs for their own shows and the beer and the paint and the cars and the trucks that a little subtlety goes a long way. ↵

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↵Like most things Fox does, let’s hope this doesn’t get too excessive. It only works if it’s natural -- make the plug seems like regular baseball conversation. Joe Buck plugging car batteries by saying ‘A-rod needs to charge up this team, something you could do to your car with an Interstate Battery,’ (note: if this has not happened yet, and does, Fox can send royalty checks to me, c/o TSB) wouldn’t work. People will see right through it if the product placement is that overt and obvious, and they’ll reject it. ↵

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↵But venerable Dick Stockton helping older men stay in the game with a little update on the ol’ Brylcreem and shoe polish routine from days of yore -- well that’s just a public service announcement. ↵

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↵What other announcer/product combinations would be this natural? Leave suggestions in the comments. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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