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December 22, 2008 at 7:59 am ET
Fire Sean McDonough

Devil Rays superstars Andy Sonnanstine, B.J. Upton and Scott Kazmir were at historic Tropicana Field to witness history — the inaugural St. Petersburg Bowl — and were interviewed on the ESPN2 broadcast.

Unfortunately, ESPN2’s broadcast of the historic game was marred by the totally unprofessional outbursts of play-by-play man Sean McDonough, who called local Red Sox broadcasts until 2004. McDonough, quite possibly drunk on air, showed his bitter testiness from virtually the start of the broadcast. Before the game began, McDonough nastily referred to ESPN2 sideline reporter Rob Stone as “Bandwagon Rob” because Stone correctly referred to the Devil Rays two or three times as “defending American League Champions.”

McDonough behaved even more atrociously during and after Stone’s interview with the three Devil Rays legends. After Kazmir told Stone that the Devil Rays were “really hungry now,” Stone told Sonnanstine of McDonough’s catty comments.

Sonnanstine quickly put the sad, bitter drunken broadcaster in his place by saying with a smile, “It’s lonely at the top.”

McDonough again interrupted to say, “Maybe next year they’ll be World Champions.”

Maybe? Maybe? How dare you Sean McDonough. How dare you come into our hallowed home and say “maybe.”

BJ Upton then finished the interview with the best line of the night: “You know, the Yankees spend a lot of money, but I think we’re going to continue to ball on a budget.”

Once McDonough returned to calling the action on the field he went right back to disrespecting the Devil Rays and their legions of fans: “Rob read his cue cards well, because I don’t think he could have picked Scott Kazmir out of a lineup five minutes ago.”

To the credit of the producers of the broadcast, Stone quickly returned to show his young son on camera, decked out in a very nice white Devil Rays jersey.

That shut McDonough up for a while, but then late in the second quarter he again sputtered out another sad comment to Stone, “Why don’t you go friend your newest best friend Andy Sonnanstine while you’re at it….”

It was a disgusting show of unprofessionalism, and I can’t understand how McDonough can be allowed to broadcast another sporting event ever again. At the bare minimum, he needs some serious anger management counseling and sensitivity training.


In other St. Pete Bowl news, The Sporting Blog has a mocking video travelogue of one writer’s trip to the game.

As for what historic Tropicana Field looked like as a football venue, tbo.com has two good photos.

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9 Responses to “Fire Sean McDonough”
  1. “Rob read his cue cards well, because I don’t think he could have picked Scott Kazmir out of a lineup five minutes ago.”

    Thats ok, the entire population of Tampa Bay couldn’t pick out Scott Kazmir prior to the 2008 season either.

  2. BG says:

    “Rays legends”

    “historic Tropicana Field”

    Easy there David!

  3. Bouj says:

    For such a Rays homer, you’d think you’d know better than to refer to them as the “Devil Rays”. The “Devils Rays” were a steaming pile. The “Rays” are the defending AL Champions.

  4. PTownFan says:

    Bouj, you have to be a Bugs and Cranks Homer to “get it”. Check out Chalk’s 12/9 post if you really want to know why he insists on holding onto the past. One bit of his spirited rationale is that it’s just not fair to all the kids to have the name of their team snatched out from under them. Sounds like all the Whos down in Whoville finally got to him.

  5. JFein says:

    Um, I think you’re taking this a bit too far. Actually, way too far.

    First of all, if you’re such a fan you’d never say “Devil Rays” again. Secondly, there is a difference between actual trash talking and gentle ribbing. McDonough was clearly teasing Rob Stone, and not insulting Rays fans. You must not have heard Sean McDonough broadcast a game before because if you did you would know and have gotten used to the humor he puts in broadcasts. That was classic Sean McDonough and it’s also why I think he’s one of the best college football broadcasters ESPN has. You’d also know that McDonough almost always teases Rob Stone out of good-natured fun, and not because he’s bitter and drunk.

    And sorry, but Tropicana Field is one of the dullest baseball stadiums in MLB. It made for an even worse football field. And to show I don’t discriminate, AT&T Park during the Emerald Bowl is just as bad.

    And maybe Stoner is a bandwagon fan, you never know. I’m pretty sure there are only 5 Rays fans who were fans of the team before this year.


  6. Pip says:

    Legendary, hallowed home. Christ this is the funniest thing I’ve read all day! I think that bowl out drew the Rays average attendance this season.

  7. David Chalk David Chalk says:

    Bouj and JFein — why does following ownership’s most ridiculous and offensive whims make one a true fan? Why would a true fan want to turn his back on the team’s first ten years just because of a stupid and unnecessary name change? I will never forget those ten first glorious teams — they have lost more games then they won, but they were heroes and champions that paved the way for our present and future glory. Therefore, they will always be DEVIL Rays to me.

  8. matt says:

    you are a loser and idiot. not only do not have any sense of humor, you write as if the rays are comparable to the yankee dynasties of years past, etc. its morons like you that make blogging and internet posting depressing to normal people. every fool can express thier opinions no matter how off base they are. get a life dork.

  9. David Chalk David Chalk says:

    matt – I would NEVER EVER EVER compare the Devil Rays to the Yankees of any time period.

    That would be an insult to the Devil Rays who — as any objective observer can tell you — are so vastly superior to their humble division mates from the Bronx.

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