Dave Barnett takes leave of absence
Texas Rangers television broadcaster Dave Barnett said through the team Monday that he doesn't expect to return to the booth this season because of health reasons.
Barnett, 54, was taken off the Rangers' broadcast after a strange over-the-air sequence during a June 18 game against San Diego.
"A 2-1 game, the tying run at second on a leadoff single by Chase Headley," Barnett said during the eighth-inning call. "The go-ahead run ... is at fifth, on what (Mike) Adams is insisting on calling a botched robbery. What actually happened was his henchman took a piece literally out of ..."
Barnett appeared to pause there, then finished the game without further problems.
The day after the incident, Barnett said he thought migraines were to blame. A news release by the Rangers Monday attributes his leave of absence to unspecified health reasons.
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"I want to thank everyone for your kind sentiments and words of encouragement over the last couple of weeks," Barnett said in the release. "It has meant a lot to me during what has been a very difficult time. Effective immediately, for health reasons I will be taking an indefinite leave of absence from my broadcasting duties that I expect to last for the remainder of the season.
"I would ask that you please respect the privacy of me and my family during this time."
The Rangers announced Friday that Matt Hicks, the former radio voice of the Double-A Corpus Christi Hooks, would replace Barnett on the broadcast team.
Former major leaguer Steve Busby has moved from the radio side to the TV booth to fill Barnett's play-by-play role, and Hicks has taken Busby's spot on the radio broadcast.
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