Former Boston Red Sox announcer Don Orsillo has agreed to join the San Diego Padres broadcast team and will replace the legendary Dick Enberg after the 2016 season, reports Gordon Edes of ESPN.com.
Team chairman Tom Werner and NESN general manager Sean McGrail announced in late August that they were parting ways with Orsillo after 15 years leading the Red Sox broadcast for NESN. Orsillo is being replaced by radio voice Dave O’Brien. The move comes as a response to falling ratings.
The Padres plan to make Orsillo, 46, their long-term lead announcer after Enberg, 80, announced that he would be retiring after the 2016 season. The contract with San Diego will also allow Orsillo do to some national work with FOX and FS1.
Orsillo’s firing has been met with disdain from Red Sox fans. Nine petition have appeared on Change.org asking NESN to keep him, including one with 62,000 signatures.
During his last home broadcast Sunday, fans paid tribute to Orsillo with signs and chants, and the team played a tribute video for him in the seventh inning that was not shown on NESN.
Orsillo is a Melrose, Mass. native and got his start interning with Red Sox radio.