For next week’s Royalman Report, we’ll be foregoing a live broadcast for some fan perspective recordings. One such segment will involve listener Dave Darby who’s down in Surprise taking in the fun and playing some ball and according to chatter, Rex Hudler is favored to fill Frank White‘s color commentary role. Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star suggests the same, though the other finalist is George Frazier, currently of the Rockies broadcast team.
In December, the Royals and Fox Sports Kansas City informed Frank White that his contract wasn’t being renewed and he would not return to the broadcast booth in 2012. Obviously, with a Kansas City legend involved, the fanbase reacted with a mix of surprise and outrage.
The Royals should soon take one of many steps to move past that episode by at least filling White’s position on the TV broadcasts. There was speculation that former players like Mike Sweeney or David Cone might fill in. My personal choice would have been Angels broadcaster and Royals Hall of Famer Mark Gubicza.
Hudler was a color man for the Angels until 2009 when he was let go from what was then a six man crew. Hudler played parts of 14 seasons in the big leagues for the Yankees, Orioles, Cardinals, Cubs, Angels and Phillies. He played nearly every position at various points in his career.
His style is different than Frank’s. Diane Pucin described Hudler as having “little-boy joy. He was a fan and wasn’t ashamed to admit that.” She also stated that there may be times where he’ll say something off the wall. Some fans might roll their eyes and others might really enjoy his style. Will that make people forget about Frank White or feel better about the Royals and FSKC? Probably not, but they have to move forward and this is the next part of that.
Hudler has also lent his voice talents to the Playstation series “MLB: The Show” from 2006 to 2010 and has hosted shows in the Los Angeles area since leaving the Angels broadcast team and, with a child who has Downs syndrome and autism, does a lot of community work to raise awareness of the conditions.