TIME, DATE, AND PLACE: 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 14, in the Barnes & Noble Book Store in the Frederick Douglass Building on the University of Rochester's River Campus
ADMISSION: Free and open to the public
Author, commentator, and sports broadcasting historian Curt Smith will sign copies of his newest book, Voices of Summer: Ranking Baseball's 101 All-Time Best Announcers (Carroll & Graf, $15.95), from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 14, in the Barnes & Noble Book Store in the Frederick Douglass Building on the University of Rochester's River Campus.
Smith, who is a senior lecturer in the Department of English, has written the first book evaluating the announcers who call the plays rather than the baseball players who make them. He offers his selections ranging from the pioneers of the 1920s to today's best announcers. Each entry lists and judges an announcer's longevity, continuity, awards, fan popularity, use of language, quality of voice, and knowledge.
Along with his rankings, Smith provides colorful trivia, such as the name of the announcer who got his broadcast start by reading a Puccini opera score in his auditions, or the broadcaster who dove into a swimming pool from his third-floor hotel room to win a bet.
Smith is the author of 10 other books, including What Baseball Means to Me, Of Mikes and Men, Voices of the Game, America's Dizzy Dean, and Windows on the White House. A speechwriter for President George Bush, he wrote more speeches than anyone for the 41st President, including the "Just War" Persian Gulf address and the 2004 eulogy to Ronald Reagan at Washington's National Cathedral.
A former senior editor for The Saturday Evening Post, Smith also has written for ESPN, Newsweek, Reader's Digest, and Sports Illustrated, and appeared on numerous network television programs including ABC's Nightline and CBS This Morning. He hosts the syndicated series Perspectives on public radio station WXXI-AM 1370.