Do you want the bad news or the good news first?
The good news is that Michael Gruber, better known as Grubes, has landed his dream gig with the Texas Rangers. The bad news is that he’s leaving the DJ booth in American Airlines Center for good.
The new job is a great fit for Gruber on both a professional and personal level. As the Dallas Stars’ in-arena DJ, he’s developed his craft to the point that even visiting fans reach out on Twitter to show their appreciation. And his dedication to baseball – Rangers baseball in particular – is a matter of longstanding public record:
The seeds were actually planted shortly after Gruber was named the Stars’ DJ in 2013. Rangers public address announcer Chuck Morgan sent him a message seven years ago, asking if he had any video editing experience. Morgan was hoping to recruit him to run the video at the ballpark, but that wasn’t part of Gruber’s repertoire. At the end of the exchange, though, the two had reached a gentlemen’s agreement. At the time, Morgan was running the soundboard, playing the music and doing PA during games, among other duties with the Rangers. Whenever Morgan was able to delegate some of those responsibilities, he would give Grubes a call.
“Chuck Morgan has been a personal hero of mine. I didn’t want to try to force it, obviously,” Gruber said. “There were a couple of times where we looked at doing it before the new ballpark, but the timing didn’t work out or it didn’t make sense.”
Is that a light on the horizon, though? Grubes has given an enthusiastic thumbs-up to his hand-picked replacement, Jonathan “Shippy” Shipman, and it’s easy to see why:
Shipman describes becoming Stars DJ as “the dream job I didn’t know I had.” Along with Stars hockey, he also has a passion for music, but he never thought he’d be able to merge those two interests. As a whole, sports talk radio in Dallas doesn’t devote a lot of time to Stars talk, especially with the Cowboys dominating the news cycle nearly year-round. But Shipman still found a way to quench his hockey thirst, doing a Stars podcast with program director Gavin Spittle when he was at 105.3 The Fan and another ongoing one with former Dallas Star Craig Ludwig on The Hockey Podcast Network....
“He is going to make it even better because he knows the game a lot better than I do,” [Gruber] says of Shipman. “He’s got a great taste in music, a great sense of timing. He’s amazingly funny, and Shippy is just a sweetheart of a guy. I promise it’s not a downgrade.”
Saad has more behind the paywall. [The Athletic DFW]
And tear up as Grubes says goodbye in his own words.
Thank you, Stars fans. I love you! pic.twitter.com/VFkzzmpY6F— Michael Gruber (@tweetgrubes) December 29, 2020
Now that the Bunch of Jerks are honorary members of the #MurderDeathKill Division, we can look forward to things like our only regular-season game on national teevee.
Stars @Canes— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) December 29, 2020
Sunday Night Hockey. April 4
on @NBCSports. https://t.co/X7suifWxyS
Meanwhile, as former DBD editor Erin Bolen has pointed out, two teams the Stars defeated to win the Western Conference will appear on NBC nine times.
NBC Sports schedule of coverage for the upcoming NHL season pic.twitter.com/hpB0Z1HYYs— Sean Shapiro (@seanshapiro) December 29, 2020
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