CHICAGO – Ed Farmer rooted for the White Sox growing up on Chicago's South Side and went on to become an All-Star reliever for them.
Where he really made his mark was in their radio booth the past three decades. Whether he was calling no-hitters, chronicling a championship season in 2005 or simply telling entertaining stories, Farmer was an inviting voice who brought listeners along for the ride.
The White Sox said he died Wednesday night in Los Angeles at age 70 following complications from an illness.
“He was just kind of like a staple in the scenery of the White Sox,” former White Sox star Paul Konerko said Thursday.
Farmer was born in suburban Evergreen Park. He starred in baseball and basketball at St. Rita High and went on to pitch for eight teams over 11 seasons, going 30-43 ERA and 75 saves.
Farmer's best years were with the White Sox from 1979-81. He was an All-Star in 1980, when he saved 30 games — then a club record.
Farmer worked as a major league scout for the Baltimore Orioles and spent time in the White Sox's front office before joining the radio booth on a part-time basis in 1991. He settled in as a full-time analyst alongside announcer John Rooney from 1992 to 2005. Farmer assumed play-by-play duties in 2006 and completed his 29th season in the booth in 2019.
“He called no-hitters, perfect games and of course, a World Series championship,” White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf said in a statement. “His experience as a major league All-Star pitcher, his wry sense of clubhouse humor, his love of baseball and his passion for the White Sox combined to make White Sox radio broadcasts the sound of summer for millions of fans. Ed grew up a Sox fan on the south side of Chicago and his allegiance showed every single night on the radio as he welcomed his ‘friends’ to the broadcast.”