10 things you may not know about Jerry Howarth

Jerry Howarth, the radio voice of the Toronto Blue Jays, will return for the 2018 season.

Jerry Howarth, the radio voice of the Toronto Blue Jays, will return for the 2018 season.

By Melissa Verge

Canadian Baseball Network

1. Jerry Howarth has been a part of the Toronto Blue Jays organization longer than any player. 2018 will mark his 38th season as play-by-play announcer for the Blue Jays. His opinion is very well respected in the game.

2. He has a fear of big dogs. One time when his son Ben was five years old, a large dog came onto his front lawn. Howarth says that he yelled at the dog to get off his property, trying to protect his son. Ever since then, he hasn't liked big dogs.

3. Howarth was raised a Roman Catholic, but in 1987 he became a Christian.

4. He served two years as an officer in the U.S. Army.

5. He met his wife, Mary, at Hastings Law School in San Francisco, after returning from service in the army. His wife is a lawyer.

6. Before Howarth gets to the stadium to call the game, he does voice exercises. He practices saying his opening line "Hello friends, this is Jerry Howarth, we're live from the Rogers Centre," multiple times before actually saying it live on the radio.

7. "Up up up...and there she goes!" Is one of Howarth's famous sayings when he calls a home run during a Blue Jays game. He's also known for saying "And the Blue Jays are in flight..." after a run is scored for the team to start the game. He's been saying that since 1983, a phrase he says he got from his Dad.

8. Although one of the MLB teams is still called the Cleveland Indians, a controversial term, Howarth says he refuses to call them the "Indians." He says that he hasn't said the term on air to refer to the team since 1992 when he made a vow to not use it anymore. It was actually a fan that caused him to stop using this term.

9. In 2016, Howarth had a rough year as he battled prostate cancer and laryngitis. Thankfully the cancer was caught early enough, and the 71-year old has been back in the booth calling games since.

10. Although it's rumoured that we may be close to the end of an era when it comes to Jerry Howarth, for the 2018 season he's still expected to be back in the booth.