There comes a time when every man reaches his breaking point, and I think that time has come. I’ve always had trouble listening to the "color commentary" of Rex Hudler, but now it’s to the point where I wish they’d broadcast crowd noise instead of Hudler and Physioc.
I’m sure Rex is a great guy, and I’d sure love to sit in those nosebleed seats and watch a game with him. I’d share a beer, cheer for my team, and have a great time with Rex sitting next to me.
But in that broadcast booth, the job requires a degree of professionalism that Hudler just doesn’t have. I suppose I’m a bit spoiled, growing up listening to Vin Scully in the Los Angeles area. Maybe because of that, I’m a bit more demanding in what I demand in a broadcaster. Or perhaps it’s a remainder of my inferiority complex toward the Dodgers, what with me growing up an Angels fan.
Either way, it’s gotten to the point where I’d rather set the TV to SAP instead of listening to Hudler and Physioc.
This started back in 2004. In a late August game, Jarrod Washburn was getting shelled, giving up 10 runs by the third inning. Still in there in the fifth, Rex pipes in. Never one to criticize the performance of a Halo, he dodges the obvious commentary of "Wow, they’re hitting Washburn like a red-headed stepchild today!" (don’t think the color of Rex’s hair escaped me as I typed that), and instead says the following:
"You know, you gotta hand it to Wash, keeping the bullpen out of it this early."
I did a double-take to my TELEVISION. The guy was pitching batting practice on the mound, and STILL could do no wrong in Hudler’s eyes.
Since then, it’s been nothing but stupid nicknames (usually created by cleverly adding a "y" at the end of their name), ridiculous comments (like last year when he kept encouraging people to vote for Angels players for the All-Star game a week after balloting had closed) and endless, ENDLESS open rooting for the Angels.
I’m a fan. I don’t need to be told how to root.
This all came to a head on Sunday against the Rangers when, as the Angels head a 4-1 lead, he declared victory…
…in the 7th inning.
It’s one thing for a fan in the stands to say "It’s in the bag!" when you have a late-inning lead.
It’s another for a broadcaster in the booth to declare that the Angels are 3-0 since the All-Star break before the game is over.
What happened next? Of course, the Rangers tied it up and won it in extra innings thanks to Rex’s jinx.
I hope for their sake, none of the Angels pitching staff has a no-hitter going when Rex is calling the game. Rex will jinx it by the third inning.
For the first time in the history of this franchise, we have ownership and management who are dedicated to bringing excellence to the field in Anaheim.
It’s time that same excellence was demanded in the broadcast booth.
Fire Rex hudler.