Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Arnold: Whatchoo Talkin' Bout, Self?

6-4 win. 2 of 3 taken from Toronto. 184 for Wake! Ricky Romero cannot stop the Rock Brigade. (I've been meaning to say this for a few weeks now, but the 2011 Red Sox offense at my house and hopefully yours will officially be known as the Rock Brigade. Even a huge fan of Def Leppard albums #2-#4 might not even be aware of this tune, one of the only good ones off of the 1980 debut album, when they were pretty much trying to be Iron Maiden and Joe Elliott sang like he had cotton balls in his mouth. Check it out here and play it every night, as I have been doing, in honor of our super-powered O. I'll have to make a video highlight film using the song.)

Yanks lose, so we're a half game out of first place. The O's come to town for four, then it's the All-Star Break.

Tonight I had the misfortune of hearing the first five innings on the radio in the car. I only say misfortune because Dale Arnold was Joe's partner tonight. Okay, it is hard to fill in and do something you don't normally do--but Jesus, that was a poor performance. Aside from just generally not knowing how to do a radio play-by-play, and the fact that he insists on inserting snarky comments when doing color, here are two examples of the horror show that is Dale in the booth:

He called Tuesday night's win a walk-off. If you're gonna call a game that ends with the winning team on defense a walk-off, you might as well call every game that. Because that's how they always end. (Unless it's an actual walk-off.) I referred to the game last night as having the "celebratory" ending. Yes, it's a different kind of ending than usual when you end a game with a play on the bases on a non-force out--but that doesn't make it a "walk-off." But hey, as long as nobody's even using that term correctly, might as well go hog wild. Hey, these peaches are on sale. Walk-off!

Another thing Dale does is to misplace his enthusiasm, almost as if he's imitating an announcer. Maybe the casual listener wouldn't notice something like this, but as a 30+ year radio tuner-inner, it sounds ridiculous: Red Sox hit a deep fly ball (which he sometimes describes as a "pop"--someone get this guy lessons). He tells us the outfielder is back at the wall, "looking up." Fine. But at this point, the listener knows there are only two possible outcomes: 1. ball goes over wall, 2. ball goes off the wall. If it goes out, the announcer should say so with surprise and excitement. If it goes off the wall, there should be excitement (though not as much as if it goes over), but, considering this is now the worse of the two possible outcomes--still great, but not a home run--there should be no surprise. But Dale yells it out the same way that, say, Vin Scully did as soon as the ball went through Buckner's legs. Since Dale already knew the ball was at minimum off the wall already, it means he was faking his surprise (and excitement, since he used the "home run" level call instead of the "aww, it's only off the wall which still is sweet but isn't as good as a dong" type call. Does that make any sense?

Overall he just doesn't fully describe the action that we can't see. Everything's disjointed or delayed. If he was a young announcer still innocently learning the ropes, that would be fine, but he thinks he's the shit. (Which is why I seriously soured on him as a talk show host back when I was listening to that crap. Needless to say I smiled an evil smile when he was fired from his gig.)

Oh Jesus, TC just used the term "core four" when referring to Red Sox players. End that right now, Tom. Right now.


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Location: Rhode Island, United States