A Boston Red Sox sideline reporter was reassigned to a desk position after her affair with Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks went public.
— Will Middlebrooks (@middlebrooks) January 1, 2014
After dating for nearly a year, the couple outed themselves in a New Year Twitter message sent out to their combined 249,000 followers. Dell, who is a reporter for the New England Sports Network (NESN), also tweeted photos of herself and Middlebrooks celebrating the New Year with friends.
The network responded by removing Dell from the coveted, high visibility sideline position and reassigning her to the ‘NESN Sports Today’ desk.
From Yahoo Sports:
As The Stew wrote when Dell was hired at NESN, her job is the most popular of its kind in baseball. The sideline reporter for NESN doesn't just relay info to a very engaged baseball fan base, she carries enough clout to get her own bobblehead. She's the "the de facto homecoming queen of New England." Heidi Watney, who Dell replaced, now works for MLB Network. So this isn't just any ol' TV news gig.
In fairness to Dell, her job isn't to play investigative reporter or cover the team as fairly and objectively as a beat writer at a newspaper would. She's a pretty face that fans at home can count on to tell them about injuries, relay info about promotions and interview players after the game. Which is to say, the "conflict of interest" flag isn't as enormous here as it would be for some other media members. Still, it was enough that NESN needed to do something.
Dell might have left the Red Sox soon enough anyway. She's been rumored to be in line for bigger and better jobs. Fox Sports 1 has been mentioned as a suitor.
Why is anyone surprised when this happens? Anyone who believes females seek sports reporting positions because of their love for sports is a fool. There's a name for these women: "Professional groupies."