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Dan Dickerson on the evolution of baseball, prospects for the 2018 Tigers, and more

Russ White
Lou Anna K. Simon, Dan Dickerson, Mark Hollis

Detroit Tigers radio play-by-play man Dan Dickerson visits with Michigan State University President Lou Anna K. Simon and Spartans Athletic Director Mark Hollis on this segment of MSU Today.

Dickerson says the game he loves and calls for Tigers fans around the world is indeed changing and that he recently had the opportunity to talk with Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred about the topic.

“He’s a fascinating guy and a smart guy and he’s thinking outside the box about changes the game needs to meet with attention spans that are growing shorter while the games are getting longer.

“We may see a pitch clock in baseball. I don’t like the idea, and yet when you talk to the commissioner you realize this may be one of the things that has to be done to move the game along. It’s a game of home runs and strikeouts right now. It is changing. But it’s also a time, at least in the last 20 years, with probably the best group of 25 and 26 year old and younger stars who are really driving the game.”

Dickerson analyzes the Tigers’ prospects for 2018 and beyond. “I think Ron Gardenhire is a difference-making manager.”

Dickerson teaches sports journalism at MSU. “I love being in the classroom and helping students learn the nuances of broadcast writing, which is different from print. It’s short and sweet, and you have to get to the point. You’re employable for life if you’re a good writer.”

Students, he says, “have to start with preparation. That’s the foundation. Everything else feeds from your preparation – your comfort level, your confidence, how you’re coming across, and how people view or listen to what you’re saying.”

Dickerson credits Ernie Harwell and Chuck Swirsky as two of the mentors who helped him get where he is. And his advice for young people who want to get into play-by-play is to be open to broadcasting any and all sports.

“Say yes when the Big Ten Network calls and says they need play-by-play for field hockey this weekend. And then prepare the best you can and be willing to go out there and maybe feel uncomfortable and maybe struggle, but say yes.”

MSU Today airs Sunday afternoons at 4:00 on 94.5 FM and AM 870.

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