Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Mccarver Closer to Last Call

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Mccarver Closer to Last Call

Article excerpt

Tim McCarver's friends at Fox are trained never to utter the r- word, respectful of his insistence that while he is leaving the announcing booth after this season, he has too many other interests to consider himself "retired."

But that does not mean McCarver is oblivious to the milestones ahead in the next four months, beginning Tuesday with his record 22nd and final All-Star Game as a TV analyst.

"I don't ever like to include myself as the story; and this is no exception," he said of his reluctance to discuss his farewell tour. "Obviously, there are feelings, some deep feelings, about what I've been doing for the last 55 years. Who wouldn't have those? But to say this is paramount going into the game is just not true. On the other hand, I'd be lying if I said it was just like any other All- Star Game, because it's not."

McCarver's history with the Midsummer Classic began years before he turned to broadcasting, in the form of two memorable appearances as a player. Just as he will work his final All-Star Game in the city most associated with his announcing career, he worked his first in the city most associated with his playing career.

That was in St. Louis in 1966, when he replaced Joe Torre at catcher after seven innings on a 105-degree day.

"Joe had taken 12 salt tablets," McCarver said, referring to a common hot-weather practice at the time. "I'd never heard of that before. If guys took four that was a lot ... That was the hottest day I ever spent in a very hot town."

It ended well for McCarver. In the bottom of the 10th, he singled off Pete Richert, was sacrificed to second by Ron Hunt and scored on a single by Maury Wills, giving the National League a 2-1 victory.

McCarver has a picture of the likes of Walter Alston, Willie McCovey, Willie Mays and Gaylord Perry coming out to greet him, a celebration that capped a day that was a "big thrill" from the start. …

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