Recently, there have been posts online about “being a homer”, but is there a true definition of being a homer? We’re not talking about a four-base hit in baseball, nor the patriarch of The Simpsons, neigh the author of “Iliad” and “Odyssey”. A search of dictionary.com finds nothing until you get to the slang definitions
Recently, there have been posts online about “being a homer”, but is there a true definition of being a homer?
We’re not talking about a four-base hit in baseball, nor the patriarch of The Simpsons, neigh the author of “Iliad” and “Odyssey”. A search of dictionary.com finds nothing until you get to the slang definitions which appears to come from The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, PhD.
“An official who favors the home team : A lot of refs get reputations as “homers”, which means they give all the tough calls to the home team (1980s+ Sports).”
In some sports and in some organizations, P. A. announcers are considered officials of the game or are required to be in attendance. However, those announcers are rarely considered what most announcers attribute to being a homer.
This is what we’ve been able to gather on the topic:
“An announcer who favors the home team specifically and only announces with emphasis for the home team, sometimes to the detriment of the visiting team.”
However, there are some who can add to that:
“An announcer who intentionally plays down the accomplishments of the visiting team in an effort to play-up the home team’s accomplishments. May include intentionally omitting the visiting team’s line-up, subs, scores, etc. Can also include those who scream for the home team while extremely underwhelmed for the visiting team. Someone who makes the visiting team, and their supporters, feel insulted with their treatment.”
While the last part is extreme, it’s been seen over the years. Even some of the most impartial announcers have been seen as homers, such as Bob Sheppard the legend of Yankee Stadium. While those claims were searching for something to complain about, others have been true.
The question arises, is being a homer a good thing or a bad thing? Well, depending on the definition. We support announcers who respect the visiting team and their accomplishments while offering some enthusiasm while supporting their own team with more enthusiasm and creating a home-field advantage without screaming or feigned energy. Sounding good is only good if you enjoy what you’re doing and you understand what you’re doing.
There have been a lot of homers who are over-the-top for the home team and that, to me, is being a homer. Screaming the home team names, sing-songing or fading up-and-down with the names shows feigned enthusiasm. There have been instances in which a visiting team goes on a run and the announcer is so droll or quiet that it actually creates an atmosphere in the arena that the game is over, even though the home team is still leading.
It’s ok to be a little bit of a homer, if you’re going to give more for your team than the visiting team, but avoid being over-the-top. Screaming, is not a good skill because it makes you much harder to understand on sound systems that aren’t designed to handle people screaming on them.
When is it not OK to be a homer?
Very simply put, when you are announcing a tournament which is to be neutral site. However, it’s ok to have two “home” teams. We encourage announcers to give the same enthusiasm to both teams that you would to your home team when doing a tournament. It raises the entertainment level of the event, especially a post-season tournament when games are win-or-go-home and at the end of the week, you could have a new champion. Emotions are a lot higher, keeping a positive attitude and a positive atmosphere are important to announcers who want to project a professional atmosphere.