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Jack Buck is still a winner

Last night, I posted on Facebook when David Freese's game-winning homer cleared the outfield wall: "As Jack Buck said... 'And we'll see you tomorrow night!'"

I had no idea that Joe Buck said the same thing his father had said 20 years before because I was shouting at the ball to vacate the premises while he was saying those poignant words. It was an absolutely perfect call. And it made me conscious of how great Jack Buck was.

He's been gone for the better part of a decade. But I still hear Jack Buck's voice calling the game in my head as I watch Cardinals games.

We're spoiled in this area by the announcers we've had over the years -- from Harry Caray in his prime to Joe Garagiola, Jack Buck, Joe Buck and now John Rooney. A lot of people like to knock Mike Shannon for his unusual approach and his quirky -- or sometimes goofy -- statements. But he's a Hall of Fame candidate with an impressive resume that few teams can match.

It might not seem like it would make that much of a difference who was calling the games. But, for many of us, that play-by-play is the soundtrack of our lives. Everyone in St. Louis knows exactly what you're talking about if you say "Go crazy folks!" A national audience knows exactly what you're talking about if you say "I do not believe what I just saw!"

The ESPN and MLB-TV crews that cover games can't hold a candle to what we've been fortunate enough to have in St. Louis for the last 50 or 60 years.