It's Finally Time The Detroit Tigers Acknowledged Mario Impemba And Rod Allen

This whole situation was a mess. For people who don’t know, Rod Allen and Mario Impemba were the TV voices for the Detroit Tigers for sixteen seasons. They started out as a duo in 2003 before their time with each other unceremoniously ended in 2018. Around 2015, I caught wind of the fact that these two did not get along with each other. I will say forever that both these men deserve a lot of credit for never allowing their personal feelings toward each other to show on the broadcast. I always assumed they were good friends. They had a terrific chemistry with each other.

The partnership ended during a game at Guaranteed Rate Field in 2018. There was an incident involving a chair that led to a physical altercation. I don’t want to recap it too much. That’s some real TMZ shit. I know people are interested in it, but honestly, it makes me feel bad. I liked both of these guys. It’s weird how the passage of time changes things. When Mario and Rod were the Tigers announcers, public perception of them was solid. They had their fair share of naysayers. I know a lot of people who didn’t like Rod. I wasn’t one of those people. I like both of them. I don’t ask for a lot out of local TV announcers, but I thought that they were excellent. 

As time has passed, it seems like their approval rating has risen. Some of that has had to do with the current TV booth being consistently rated one of the worst in the sport. The fans have not been kind to them. But whether or not you liked Mario, Rod, or either of them, you can’t deny that they were the TV voices for what was a golden age of Detroit Tigers baseball. They were in the booth for every Great Tigers moment we got during their heyday from 2006-2014. It’s been five years. I think it’s about time the Detroit Tigers show them some love.

The Tigers essentially erased these two broadcasters' names from the history books. By all accounts, that's kind of what happens when you get fired. I've never been fired (Wait, let me check my email. OK, we're good), But I can imagine the psychological toll of putting so much of your life's work into something only to have your image scraped from existence. 

Do I believe these two belong in the same breath as Ernie Harwell and Dan Dickerson? Ha, absolutely not. To even write that makes me feel guilty. But the TV booth loves to capitalize on nostalgia if you've watched any Tiger game over the last six years. I'm not saying you had to like them, but an entire generation of Tigers fans only knew these two as Tigers broadcasters. I started watching Tiger baseball in 2003. For 16 years, there was no Tiger baseball without Mario and Rod. 


I don't know either one of these two personally. I'm guessing they will not repair their relationship at any point. But Comerica Park has been honoring everybody lately. If you have to do it on different days, so be it. But it's time to bring these two back, let them throw the first pitch, and give them the round of applause they sadly never could get. They deserve their flowers.