ARLINGTON, Texas – Left-hander Derek Holland has been the man when it comes to Harry Caray impersonations with the Texas Rangers.
The acquisition of Ryan Dempster at the trade deadline last month changed that.
Holland, who took his Caray work to a national level last year during the World Series, got a chance to work with the godfather of Caray impersonations last week when the Rangers were in New York. Holland and Dempster stopped by the MLB Fan Cave and broke down their own game highlights while impersonating Caray, complete with white wigs and big glasses in honor of Caray.
Caray, who worked on Chicago Cubs broadcasts for WGN, was known for butchering names and talking about just about everything but baseball.
“It was a lot of fun,” Holland said. “He said I do a fairly good job. He’s definitely better than me. One thing I want to work on is the face. He can go on a long time with the words. It’s a lot harder for me because I’m not used to it. I’ve been working on it.
Holland, who also did his Caray impersonation during a local weather broadcast during the offseason, got the seal of approval from Dempster.
“I thought he did an all right job,” said Dempster, who has been working on his Caray for more than a decade. “He’s constantly trying to improve and that’s all you can ask out of anybody doing impressions. I thought he could have held it together a little bit at the end but for the most part he did a good job.”
Holland said he’s seen a lot of Dempster’s work, which is easy to come by. Dempster has done the Cubs’ lineup in his Caray voice as well as several national shows.
Holland wasn’t intimidated by working with Dempster in the skit which had a scripted intro and then was adlibbed. Both pitchers critiqued the real Holland and Dempster in their best Caray voices.
“I knew going into it how good his (impression) was,” said Holland, who thinks his Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonation is better than his Caray. “I had to make the best of mine, which is really what it comes down to. We’ve talked about it. It’s good but it could be better.”
Dempster is just happy to have another player on his team who appreciates the work of Caray.
“It was one take and then we went,” said Dempster, who caught Holland’s work for the first time during the World Series. “It was a lot of fun. I’ve been dabbling in this for more than 10 years. He’s going to get better.”