Joe Davis is no stranger to succeeding legendary baseball voices.
In 2017, he took over from Hall of Fame announcer Vin Scully on Los Angeles Dodgers telecasts. He’s since emerged as one of the top broadcasters in the game.
Davis will be tasked with succeeding another major name. On Friday, Davis was named Fox Sports’ lead baseball play-by-play announcer.
Davis takes over for Joe Buck, who left Fox for ESPN’s “Monday Night Football.” Buck was Fox’s lead baseball announcer since the network started televising games in 1996, calling 24 World Series and 22 All-Star Games.
When it comes to his new position with Fox, Davis said he would take the same approach he did with the Dodgers — he is following Buck, rather than replacing him.
“I’m going to try to be myself,” Davis said. “I think Joe’s the greatest of this generation. He is the guy that I grew up listening to. I think back to watching the World Series when Fox got it in 1996, I was eight or nine years old at that point, and already I knew what I wanted to do. And there was Joe doing the job that I dreamed of one day doing. So you know, it’s heady stuff for me.
“Because of the person that was in the chair before me, that’s part of what makes the job so special. That’s part of what makes it such a great responsibility.”
Davis’ debut as Fox’s top voice will be May 28. He is already used to working with analysts John Smoltz and reporters Tom Verducci and Ken Rosenthal after doing some games with them last season after Buck cut back on regular-season games. Davis also called the final game of the 2020 National League Championship Series with Smoltz.
The 34-year old Davis joined Fox Sports in 2014 to call baseball, college football and college basketball. He previously worked at ESPN for two years. He called the 2013 Poinsettia Bowl, becoming the youngest person to ever announce a bowl game for ESPN at 25.
Brad Zager, the President of Production/Operations and Executive Producer of Fox Sports, certainly wasn’t expecting to name a new baseball announcer two months ago, but unprecedented movement among top announcers has allowed Davis a chance to move into the lead role.
“We felt extremely confident in a very short amount of time once the reality set in that Joe Buck was leaving that we’ve had the right guy in house being groomed for this for a while now,” Zager said. “Joe Davis had those opportunities the last few years to fill in on big events, and he’s nailed it. He’s proven to Dodger fans on a daily basis how good of a baseball broadcaster he is. We know he’s ready.”
Davis said he tried not to get caught up in all the rumors about Buck leaving until early March when it became a reality. Zager told Davis during the Pac-12 Basketball Tournament that he would become only the second lead voice in Fox baseball history.
Besides his duties on Fox, Davis will continue to do Dodgers games on SportsNet LA. This year’s All-Star Game will be at Dodger Stadium on July 19.
“The World Series is obviously this dream come true. But then you start thinking about the other stuff like the All-Star Game and the Field of Dreams game. I’m pinching myself about those things, too,” Davis said. “I daydream a little bit about the All-Star Game and the introductions and the guys lining up along the baselines and getting to introduce them. I’m gonna have so many pinch me moments this year and the years to come.”
As for the other opening Buck and Troy Aikman created at Fox, Zager said discussions continue about the new lead NFL team. Kevin Burkhardt is expected to take over the play-by-play role.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports