Upon being selected to replace Josh Lewin as the Texas Rangers’ play-by-play voice for television, John Rhadigan (above) called himself “a modern day storyteller”. Roughly 7 weeks into the 2011 season, it would appear Rangers fans and ownership alike are sick to death of Rhadigan’s storytelling, as he’s been demoted to the Texas pregame show, starting tonight. Amongst the more specific critics of Rhadigan’s work was the Dallas Observer’s Richie Witt, who less than ten days ago, despite calling the broadcaster, “one of the nicest people I’ve ever met,”, had no shortage of complaints. From the May 16 Observer :
His signature opener — “Let’s play ball y’all” — is too corny. He doesn’t know the rules, once crediting a batter who hit into a double-play with an RBI. What I hear are simple slip-ups, the kind of things you’d expect from a rookie announcer with zero Major League play-by-play experience.
Last Tuesday, with the Rangers leading the A’s 7-1 into the top of the 9th, Rhadigan exclaimed “It’s Neffy time!” But the video clearly showed Darren Oliver jogging in from the bullpen. Sunday he referred to Adrian Beltre as “Andre.”
And yesterday, with Callaspo up and the tie run on 1st, the Angels hitter took a borderline 3-1 pitch over the inside corner. “Strike three!” Rhadigan exclaimed. After a short pause and screaming silence from Grieve, Rhadigan corrected himself, “er, strike two.” He’d simply lost track of the count, an almost unpardonable sin in that crucial situation.
“Perhaps Rhadigan should have been given a series of games during the offseason to broadcast as simulations,”suggest Evan M. Grant, though I’ll remind the Rangers that if things don’t work out the rest of the season, there’s a very experienced replacement available, who might be sitting by the phone at this very minute.