Monday, June 5, 2017

Baltimore Radio: Fred Manfra Retires As Orioles Voice

(Baltimore Sun photo)
Memories from his career flashed through Orioles radio announcer Fred Manfra’s mind Sunday as he drove to Camden Yards reports The Baltimore Sun.

There were his first-day nerves when he started full-time in 1993. He remembered the excitement covering festivities for Cal Ripken Jr.'s major league record-breaking 2,131st consecutive game.

Manfra even thought about the beginning of this season, when he threw the ceremonial first pitch Opening Day.

That was about two months after Manfra announced that he was stepping down from full-time broadcasting duties because of health problems. Sunday’s call against the Red Sox was his last, leaving the veteran radio personality with nostalgia for his accomplished career.

“You finally realize how much a part of the fabric of a city and a populous of a city when you’re a radio broadcaster,” Manfra said. “You’re sitting with them in their backyards at cookouts. You’re out on the bay with them as they’re fishing.”

Manfra planned to work through the end of June, but his house in Fallston sold quickly, and the new family moved in at the end of May.

He had held a fill-in play-by-play role for broadcasts on WBAL 1090 AM in the 1970s, and later worked for ABC, covering professional sports and the Olympics.

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