Mets Booth: Individual strengths of Gary Cohen, Keith Hernandez, and Ron Darling
While Cohen provides the “meat and potatoes” of the TV broadcasts with his play-by-play, Keith Hernandez has made his mark with his (very colorful) color commentary on SNY. Both Hernandez and Ron Darling have the context of their Mets careers to fall back on when providing in-game comments. This often leads to fun stories about the 1980s Mets that may not have made it into the books written about the era.
I also enjoy how Hernandez shares his strong opinions about the state of the game today and how it differs from when he played. He provides an interesting lens through which to view the changes to baseball year after year.
Hernandez also never shies away from pointing out “good fundies” for “all you kids watching at home.” He consistently gives detailed insight into how players should properly react to various in-game situations. He also enjoys sharing proper fielding techniques, hitting approaches, and defensive positions. Given that Hernandez is widely considered the best defensive first baseman of all time and was also an offensive force at the plate, his baseball acumen is worth taking seriously by fans and players alike.
Though Hernandez is clearly a valuable baseball mind to have in the booth, he is also a lovable character who injects a lot of personality into Mets broadcasts. Only he would randomly sigh during long games, discuss his cat Hadji at length, dissect his favorite types of coffee, or justify why “half a pint of ice cream” is the only dairy he’ll eat.
Quite simply, Hernandez both makes us think and makes us laugh, and for that, Mets fans are truly grateful.