Origin of "They're not saying boo..."

My first MLB experience was at a Detroit Tigers game in (I think) 1986. The fans chanted what sounded like “boooo!” at the hometown second baseman, Lou Whitaker, when he was up to bat. I was, of course, perplexed. Why would they boo their own guy?!? My dad explained they were saying “Louuuuu!” and I remember thinking that was actually pretty cool.

Now a days this “they’re not saying boo, they’re saying ___” thing happens in almost all sports with any player whose name features an “ooh” sound.

So, was Lou Whitaker the first? Does anyone remember hearing it before the mid-80’s?

Boog Powell, Baltimore Orioles, starting in 1961.

The fans all chanted “Boooooooooomer” for George “Boomer” Scott in the 70’s in Boston.

Mr. Burns: Smithers, are they boo-ing me?
Smithers: Uh…no. They’re saying boo-URNS, boo-URNS
Mrs. Burns: Excuse me, are you saying BOO or BOOURNS?
Hans Moleman: I was saying boo-urns.

Boog had crossed my mind as the perfect candidate for the “Boooooog” chant. As I was not around in the 60’s, did you actually hear it at O’s games, or hear it on TV or something?

Do you have some kind of citation to go with that statement so we can have a sure answer?

We’ve discussed this in other threads before.

I’m 51, and the first guy I ever heard getting the “Boo” treatment was indeed John Wesley “Boog” Powell, the old 1st baseman of the Baltimore Orioles.

However, I have older relatives who remember fans at Yankee Stadium chanting “Moooooose” for Bill “Moose” Skowron, the Yanks’ 1st baseman, back in the Fifties.

So, it goes back at LEAST as far as Moose Skowron… maybe much farther than that.

When Powell was coming out of a long slump, he once commented that it was good to hear they were adding the “g” again.


Go for the eyes Boo, go for the eyes! Buttkickicking for GOODNESS!


After searching Moose Skowron, who passed away very recently, I foundthis articlewhere he says he had to explain the “Moooooose” chant to his grandmother, who was worried fans didn’t like him. He says it was when he played for the White Sox, which was from 1964-1967. Certainly, Yankees fans might have been doing it before that.

Moose broke into MLB in 1954, Boog Powell’s rookie year was 1961. Still hard to say who got the fake booooooo first. If anyone has information of even earlier fake booooos I’d love to hear about it.

Did Yankee fans cheer on Lou Gehrig with “Loooooooooooooou” I wonder?

My first ballpark experience as a kid was County Stadium in Milwaukee and the chants of “Coooooooooooop” for Cecil Cooper sure sounded like boo to me.

I can confirm that we would cheer “Looooooou” for Lou Piniella back in the '70s, and cause much confusion to stadium newcomers who were afraid that people were booing our left fielder. Lou played for the Yankees from 1974 to 1984.

I always associated that comment with Lui “Looooooooooo” Passaglia.

If only they’d learn the French u, it wouldn’t have to be so low pitched and thus would sound happier.

I remember when Boog Powell played with Cleveland, (1975-1976 Wow! Was it only one season?) and my step-dad used to take me to the games. I was 12, and I asked this same question: “He’s on our team. Why are they booing him?” And he explained it to me.

Red Sox fans aren’t booing our 3rd basemen Kevin. (We not usually) They’re saying “Yoouk”