Padres TV Guy’s Gig Hijacked By Team, Enberg

I spent nine years as a major and minor league baseball play-by-play announcer, so I have a unique perspective on what went down with San Diego Padres’ recent Dick Enberg TV hire.

Padres, Dick Enberg Jacked Mark Neely's Gig

(Padres, Enberg jacked Neely’s gig for no good reason)

Jay Posner of the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE reports that despite the fact that the Padres already had a TV announcer under contract for this season, Mark Neely, the club still went out and hired Enberg for the job - kicking Neely to the curb.

The 74-year-old Enberg was well aware of Neely’s situation yet told Posner that, “I don’t feel that I betrayed anyone.”

As you know, Enberg’s been to the top of the sports broadcasting mountain. As you may not know, Mark Neely spent a decade riding buses in the low minor leagues, finally working his way into a full-time major league opportunity.

I knew Mark when I was the Yankees’ AAA announcer in Columbus and he was doing Louisville games. Talented guy who was well-liked by his peers. And someone who worked his way up from the very bottom of the business into his dream job. Amazing accomplishment.

So why on earth would the Padres do such a thing? And Enberg would go along with it?

I’ve got a pretty good idea. Read more…

Speed Read: Steelers Salvage Opening Night Win

If anyone wanted to know the difference between college football and the NFL, you just needed to watch the two games last night. (At least the two that anyone cared about - sorry, Florda A&M at Winston-Salem State on ESPNU.) If you like offense, crazy plays and wild comebacks, then the Clemson at Georgia Tech game was for you. But if you prefer low-scoring, hard-hitting football that’s kind of not very exciting until the final five minutes, then the NFL kickoff game between Pittsburgh and Tennessee was for you. (Sorry, is my bias showing?)

Steelers vs Titans

First let’s talk about the Steelers’ 13-10 overtime victory. Plainly put, Pittsburgh had no reason to win this game. They could not run the ball, gaining a whopping 33 yards. (Note to the guy in my fantasy league bragging about “stealing” Rashard Mendenhall: eat it.) And between Jeff Reed almost shanking the game-tying 32-yard field goal into the offensive line’s backsides and Hines Ward fumbling after a reception took him inside the Titans’ five with a minute to go, they were teetering on disaster. Read more…