Saturday, August 2, 2014

Braves Broadcaster Pete van Wieren Dies At 69

Another voice of the HQ's youth has left us too soon.
Long time Atlanta Braves announcer Pete van Wieren has passed at the age of 69.

The "Professor"- nicknamed so for his encyclopedic knowledge of the sport and levels of preparedness- was a part of the Braves booth that spread the "Superstation TBS" across the country and turned the Atlanta Braves into America's team- even more so than WGN's Chicago Cubs during the battle of cable powers Tribune and Ted Turner.

The group of van Wieren, Ernie Johnson, Senior, Skip Caray, and then later Don Sutton and Joe Simpson were the voices of some very bad baseball but also got their shot when the Braves won their only World Series.

On November 4, 2009, van Wieren felt a bump on the back of his head; when he got it checked, he learned it was Stage 4 non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He had been battling it ever since.

van Wieren retired from the Braves booth in 2005.

In October of 2008, Van Wieren announced his retirement after 33 seasons with the Braves. His departure came less than three months after the death of his longtime on-air partner Skip Caray.

During the 2008 season, Van Wieren announced that a publishing company approached him about writing a book about his time in the booth. His book, written in 2009, is titled "Of Mikes and Men: A Lifetime of Braves Baseball" and was released in April 2010. It was co-written with Jack Wilkinson.

The broadcast booth for the Braves' home games at Turner Field is named for van Wieren.

Here was "The Professor's" good-bye to his broadcast partner:

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