Tim McCarver A Refreshing Change On FOX Sports Midwest

Every St. Louis Cardinals fan, or baseball fan for that matter, has an opinion on Tim McCarver as a broadcaster. That meant there were already opinions aplenty about him making his debut on FOX Sports Midwest last night to begin the 30 games he’ll broadcast with Dan McLaughlin this season.

TimMcCarverI’ve never been reluctant to share my feelings about the quality of the broadcasters at FOX Sports Midwest — in a nutshell, as Cardinals fans we deserve better — nor that I take every opportunity possible to listen to optional broadcasts when I can, such as when the Cards play the Cubs or Brewers.

Yet I was curious to hear McCarver last night, willing to forego the chance to listen to FOX Sports Wisconsin. Yes, I too often found him annoying when he did games on FOX all these years. But the games on FOX Midwest are different since they’re local and not national. Would he be different too? (Plus, really, how could he be any worse than what we have to endure with whatever combination of McLaughlin, Al Hrabosky and Ricky Horton is on the air any given night?)

It didn’t take long to notice a difference from the usual broadcast. McCarver impressed me right away when he said that no only did he watch Wacha’s last start against the Mets, but he also picked up the phone and called Bob Gibson to talk more about Wacha’s pitching line from that day as well as his curveball and why he was throwing so many in the game. When the wind is in your face, Gibson said according to McCarver, that’s when your curveball works the best. And the curve worked both to Wacha’s benefit and detriment that day, as he was wild with it also.

Look at that — insightful broadcasting. Beats the heck out of hearing Al read yet again from that day’s media notes. And McCarver mentioned numerous times Cardinals games he’d watched this season and cited specific examples. Continue reading

Monday Morning Tidbits: McCarver, Mo and More

UPDATE: Tony La Russa is unanimously elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame, as are Joe Torre and Bobby Cox. More from Derrick Goold and Rick Hummel is here.

It’s Monday morning, it’s cold and snowy throughout much of the country (which was pretty obvious if you watched any NFL games yesterday) but there’s plenty of baseball talk going on — so it can’t be all bad.

McCarverMaybe you saw the article on Friday in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch hinting at Tim McCarver joining the Cardinals broadcast team. Now Jenifer Langosch has more at the Cardinals site: indeed Fox Sports Midwest is nearing a deal that would add McCarver to the television team in a limited role.

Hmmm. Having never been quiet about my feelings for the Fox Midwest announcers (and rewatching some games lately from this season just makes my feelings all the more clear), I can’t say this would make things any worse than they have been. Who knows — maybe Joe Buck could even come back and do a couple of games with McCarver. Didn’t everyone besides Cards fans think they were always rooting for the team during national broadcasts anyway? But Dan McLaughlin and Tim McCarver together … yikes.

In happier thoughts, there likely isn’t a Cardinals fan out there who doesn’t appreciate what John Mozeliak continually does for the team. (Well, okay, there probably is at least one …) But if you don’t appreciate how he’s built the roster that’s appeared in two of the last three World Series and even retooled the roster for 2014 without giving up any of the Cardinals prospects plus received a compensatory draft pick now that Carlos Beltran has signed with the Yankees, read this about the Seattle Mariners and their general manager Jack Zduriencik. You will appreciate Mo — and be really glad you’re a Cardinals fan.

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