It has been a couple of days, but TBS “fired” broadcaster Chip Caray on Monday, mostly because he was horrible. Caray’s mistake-laden, wait-is-he-actually-watching-these-games? work during the baseball playoffs humiliated both him and the network, and it was so bad that you almost had to feel for him. Almost.
Reviews of Caray’s work during the postseason were uniformly critical (enjoy that link; it’s a Deadspin compendium of people on Twitter destroying Caray), but no one among the network brass cares what people say on Twitter. No, to our eyes, the reason Chip Caray was fired — even though they’re not calling it a firing — is Richard Sandomir.
Sandomir is the sports-media writer for the New York Times — he’s also responsible for those Enlightened Bracketologist books, to which we have, full disclosure, contributed — and during the playoffs, he was Caray’s most relentless and high-profile critic. His October 9 piece, “Chip Caray Is in a Verbal Slump in the TBS Booth ,” vivisected Caray and left his mangled corpse on the side of the road.
Caray is still prone to bad play calls, descriptive exaggerations and factual errors. Every announcer makes mistakes, but Caray’s lips form a pattern of an announcer out of his element. The producer, Glenn Diamond; the director, Lonnie Dale; and the statistician are either failing him or he is spurning their advice and support.
That was not from an angry media blogger, that was in the New York Times. Later, Sandomir mocked Caray’s use of “pensmen” and “batsmen” in his broadcast. Sandomir’s pieces were devastating, and no one reading them could possibly conclude that Chip Caray should ever be allowed to broadcast a playoff game again. Obviously, the TBS brass were reading.
So! Sandomir has his first scalp. The man gets results. We have an extremely long list of people we would like him to go after next. Sandomir, assemble!