Delmon Young does not care what I or anyone else who likes to poke fun of Delmon Young thinks. He got $250K for getting on a plane to Cleveland yesterday and may get millions for simply losing a moderate amount of weight — which, based on how he looked last night, he already has. His is a pretty good life when you stop to think about it.
But it’s not like he’s the worst caricature of himself that we haters have created. He is motivated, reports Ruben Frank of CSNPhilly.com, and is ready to play right field for the Phillies tonight. The Phillies brass says a lot of good things about him. They’re really wanting this to work.
It’s kinda crazy to realize that Delmon is still only 27. That, combined with the fact that the last time he was really in shape — in 2010 for the Twins — he had a really nice year. So no, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that he produces this year. And maybe last night’s home run — and the fact that he didn’t ground out on any first-pitch swings — is a harbinger of things to come.
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.