While we thought Dibble's ouster from Nationals airwaves represented the end of that mess, it came up again a few days ago when he taped an interview for Fox Sports with Mark Kriegel and Kevin Frazier. In addition to topics like steroids and what a bad guy Barry Bonds was, the Strasburg flap inevitably came up. In addition to once again criticizing bloggers (Dibble said he was never actually fired, as many said), he shared a interesting anecdote about how exactly his Nationals broadcasting stint ceased to be:
"I'm gonna tell you something that I've never told anybody before...it was basically, Strasburg's fater e-mailed the owner, and basically was offended by what I said."
Dibble took pains to point out that he said what he said about Strasburg on his radio show, not a Nationals broadcast, and also that he hopes Strasburg has "a great career." However, D.C. Sports Bog's Dan Steinberg brings up a good point: Dibble said he doesn't want his name to be forever associated with Strasburg...so why's he going on film for a prominent website and saying Strasburg's father was the reason he got taken off the air, long after most people stopped caring about the whole issue?
Additionally, Kriegel and Frazier were clearly backing Dibble (Frazier in particular kept raving about how Dibble "tells the truth"), and we just can't accept that...something about how Dibble encouraged Strasburg to ignore an injury, when Dibble's own career was derailed by injuries, didn't sit quite right with us. (We'll concede the point to Frazier about TV networks being "in bed" with teams - some, of course, especially so.)
And for what it's worth, someone noteworthy disagrees with Dibble's account of the actions of Stephen Strasburg's father...Stephen Strasburg. Here's what he tweeted yesterday:
For those of you wondering my dad doesn't even have the [Nationals owner Ted Lerner's] email... Actually was a fan of Dibble believe it or not
Since neither Strasburg nor Dibble is exactly an objective source, we'll let the comments of each stand without further judgment. What we will comment on is this: Frazier said:
"Sports is entertainment. People come to the ballpark to be entertained...that's why [Dibble] will always be back."
Fair enough re: the "entertainment" line, but part of the entertainment is also calling out people when the say dumb things. (Remember this?) When Stephen Strasburg needed Tommy John surgery shortly after Dibble told him to "suck it up," that "suck it up" line was proven to be a dumb thing. Dibble faced the consequences for that with both the Nationals and the public, and as long as the incident is still discussed, he'll keep hearing it...and he'll still be associated with Strasburg.