Josh Lewin was so good and so popular as the Rangers’ play-by-play announcer that replacing him was a very tall task, but John Rhadigan probably thought he had at least a little job security.
Less than two months after stepping into Lewin’s big shoes Rhadigan has been fired, according to Richie Witt of the Dallas Observer.
In talking to some Rangers fans the consensus seems to be that Rhadigan was pretty shaky early on in what was his first play-by-play gig and has been criticized a lot by fans and media members.
However, when asked to evaluate Rhadigan’s performance as recently as two weeks ago Rangers president Nolan Ryan said:
I feel as if he is improving his play-by-play. We are asking him to do something he hasn’t done and need to give him time.
Apparently “need to give him time” meant “we’ll fire him in 15 days.”
T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that Dave Barnett will move from the radio side to replace Rhadigan.
Can anyone recall another announcer being let go in the middle of a season for performance-related reasons rather than health problems or personal issues?
Tom Schuba of the Chicago Sun-Times reports that Athletics outfielder Dustin Fowler has filed suit against the White Sox for negligence. Fowler sustained a season-ending injury during a collision at Guaranteed Rate Field last June and is also bringing the lawsuit against the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority agency, as neither party took measures to secure the ballpark’s unpadded electrical box that exacerbated his injuries.
The 22-year-old outfielder was just two outs into his major league debut with the Yankees when the incident occurred. Fowler tracked a Jose Abreu foul ball down the first base line and flipped over the short railing. He was noticeably limping after colliding with a knee-high electrical box at the wall and collapsed to the ground within seconds before being carted off the field.
The official diagnosis: a ruptured patellar tendon and season-ending surgery on his right knee. Per Schuba’s report, which can be read here in full, Fowler has claimed “‘severe and permanent’ external and internal injuries, as well as mental pain and anguish” following the collision.
No specific demands have been publicized yet. Fowler is said to be seeking money from both the White Sox and the Sports Facilities Authority, likely enough to cover the “large sums” he spent on medical care for the surgery and related treatments.