Royals broadcaster celebrates 40 years

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Hall of Fame broadcaster Denny Matthews loves his job. He’s in his 45th season calling Kansas City Royals games. The first four years were in old Municipal Stadium near 22nd and Brooklyn, then in 1973 a whole new park opened up.

“Everybody was fizzed up because it was a brand new ballpark, you could just feel a buzz and excitement when people were coming in even though it was so darn cold,” Matthews said.

It was called Royals Stadium then.

Four decades and a face lift later, it’s now called Kauffman Stadium and Denny says it’s the best place to work.

“I remember saying when this ballpark opened in 1973 we have build the perfect ballpark except for one thing — artificial turf,” Matthews said.

Years later, when the turf was torn up and the grass was laid down, Denny would call it “perfect”.

He loves his job. He’s got one of the best seats in the house, right behind home plate. He’s learned a lot over the years — namely when to talk, and when to be quiet.

“I enjoy a 3-2 game, well played game with both teams playing well, you really don’t need to tell stories about other players or what’s going on elsewhere, you stay with the game because now the game will take care of you and you’ve got a great game to broadcast and those are really the fun nights.”

Forty years later, Denny was still in the booth Wednesday night. The memories flooded back. It was cold, but not as cold as April 10, 1973. He also got to call his favorite type of game — a close one. And just like 1973, the Royals won. Not a bad way to start the next 40 years.

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