The Texas Rangers' experiment of hiring a TV play-by-play announcer with no play-by-play experience lasted all of 49 games. The Rangers fired John Rhadigan on Thursday, replacing him with radio announcer Dave Barnett.
After taking a week off, Rhadigan will return to his former duties as host of the pregame and postgame “Rangers Live” shows. Former Kansas City Royals pitcher Steve Busby will join Eric Nadel on the majority of the radio broadcasts. Pregame and postgame radio host Bryan Dolgin also will fill-in for several games.
Reached at his home in Dallas, Rhadigan admitted he would have liked to have had a longer run as TV announcer.
“You know, I wanted to do it for 20 years,” he said. “It was unfortunate, but it was a fun ride. I had a great time doing it. I had eight weeks of fantasy baseball play-by-play.”
Rhadigan said he was informed of the team's decision Tuesday morning. His final broadcast was Tuesday night's rain-delayed telecast, which the Chicago White Sox won 8-6.
He said the team gave him no specific reasons for the change. “They said that there was a lot of negative feedback and that the learning curve was just too great to overcome,” he said.
Rhadigan, who turned 50 on Monday, also will rejoin Fox Sports Southwest, handling a variety of his previous studio shows, including college football and the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Rangers hired Rhadigan to replace longtime TV voice Josh Lewin, who was fired after last season. Lewin still lives in the Dallas area, hosting a midday sports talk show on Dallas station KRLD-FM 105.3, “The Fan.”