In his 34 years in sportscasting, Fox baseball analyst Tim McCarver has watched many technological advancements in covering the game. He credited Fox with helping bring the game closer to the fans.
“Sounds of the Game, more than any other element, is what Fox has brought to the coverage of Major League Baseball,” McCarver said in a conference call this week. “Microphones on the bases, umpires and everywhere else you can imagine over the last 18 years since we've been doing the All-Star Game, is the biggest and best evolution in the coverage of the game. It's how the game is heard as much as how the game is seen.”
McCarver will be calling his 15th and final All-Star Game on Tuesday night. After 55 years in baseball, he is retiring after this season to devote more time to his other passions, including cooking and fine wine. He has a streak of 28 consecutive MLB postseasons on network television, dating to 1984, and he has teamed with Joe Buck a record 17 years as the network's lead broadcast team.
Looking back on his 21-year playing career, mostly as a catcher, McCarver called the 1966 All-Star Game in St. Louis his favorite. He scored the winning run in the 10th inning of the NL's 2-1 victory.
“The team in 1966 had Willie Mays, Roberto Clemente and Hank Aaron hitting one through three in the lineup and Sandy Koufax pitching in his last All-Star Game start,” he said. “Tony Perez won the 15-inning game in 1967 and Tom Seaver finished it. I faced Tom Seaver for about 13 years after that game and I don't think I ever saw him throw any harder. He was young, strong as a bull and my hand hurt for about two weeks after that. That's a fact.”
As a broadcaster, he called the AL's 4-3 victory in 15 innings in 2008 in New York as his most memorable.
“The 15-inning game in Yankee Stadium to send the Grand Old Lady on her way in 2008 was just a tremendous game, the longest game in All-Star Game history. We were on the edge of our seats, as I'm sure a lot of fans were throughout.”
McCarver said the NL might have an advantage Tuesday night with its seven left-handed pitchers, compared to three for the AL.
“Having that many left-handers can allow manager Bruce Bochy to go one-on-one with certain left-handed hitters late in the game, and that is an advantage,” he said.