There was a massive open-air party at City Hall in San Francisco last night to watch Game 4. And after Game 4 ended, it turned slightly ugly:
… small groups of onlookers went on the rampage early Monday morning, lighting a bus on fire, throwing bottles and injuring several people … Police scanners described a group of as many as 100 rioters setting fires, smashing windows, throwing bottles at police and damaging cars. By 2:30 a.m. police were reporting that the rioters had scattered, and city crews were cleaning up the burned material and broken glass from the streets so that they could be reopened in time for the morning rush hour.
Not gonna put too fine a point on it, but there were many folks I encounter on the Internet — many who count themselves Giants fans — who made jokes about how Detroit would riot if the Tigers won the series, and oh how uncivilized and awful those people are in that terrible city.
Fox Sports Detroit has named Matt Shepard their new full-time play-by-play guy for Tigers games. Shepard will work with analysts Jack Morris and Kirk Gibson, who will split time.
This is the move in response to former longtime announcers Mario Impemba and Rod Allen getting suspended and later fired following an in-booth altercation in Chicago last September. The two of them, who weren’t exactly friends, reportedly fought over a chair, with conflicting reports of how serious the fight was. An anonymous witness said Allen put Impemba in a choke hold. Allen recently gave an interview in which he denied that and said it was only some pushing and shoving. Either way, it ended their 16-year team-up for Tigers games.
Shepard has worked for Fox Sports Detroit for nearly 20 years, doing fill-in play-by-play for the Tigers — he replaced Impemba for the last few weeks of last season — and for Detroit Pistons games. Gibson has been a part time analyst for the network for the past couple of seasons, splitting time with Allen. Morris has done Tigers, Blue Jays and Twins games over the years, sometimes even splitting time between the Twins and Tigers, which is rather unusual.
Shepard is pretty good at his job. While Tigers fans liked and were familiar with Impemba, there won’t be a falloff in quality. Gibson makes some good analytical points and has a surprisingly sharp and biting sense of humor about him, but his gruff and monotone delivery is not everyone’s cup of tea. You get used to it. Morris is not my cup of tea — he tends to do a lot of the “back in my day” stuff former players often do — but I’m pretty sure he could recite the dictionary on TV in Detroit and a lot of Tigers fans would tune in. Such is life.