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Tim McCarver
vs. the Mets
Game Log Memories of
Tim McCarver
Tim McCarver
James Timothy McCarver
Born: October 16, 1941 at Memphis, Tenn.
Throws: Right Bats: Left
Height: 6.00 Weight: 183

Tim McCarver has been the most popular Ultimate Mets Database daily lookup 15 times, most recently on February 13, 2017.

Non-playing roles with Mets
  • Broadcaster: Television 1983 - 1998

Share your memories of Tim McCarver


April 18, 2002
Without question in my mind the best broadcasters (except Bob Murphy) that has ever done a Mets game! He was great on National TV as well, too bad we let him go and that he ended up with the Yankees and now the Giants.

Gary from Chesapeake
April 20, 2002
I cannot think of any former player who made a better transition to the broadcast booth than Tim McCarver. I was skeptical when the Mets first hired him, since he was always playing for "the bad guys" - the Cards and the Phillies. But he quickly won me over. He and Steve Zabrieski were quite an act together for about ten years, with Steve usually playing the straight man. Tim gave lessons on the game, every game he called. He lost favor with the Mets players, I believe, because he called things as he saw them and if a player blew a play, he did not hold back in his critique.

April 25, 2002
McCarver was great in that he helped usher in the era of the "intelligent jock" in the booth, and I always felt it was appropriate that he joined the Met family at a time (1983) when it was putting togther a world-class team top to bottom. He taught millions more about baseball than they probably knew.

Unfortunately, I think he taught too well. After a few years, I could anticipate just about everything he was going to say and it seemed he couldn't wait to tell me anyway. He seems to me to be a victim of the time he helped come about.

NJ Tank
May 18, 2002
He didn't seem bad at first. Growing up I learned a lot of baseball watching Tim McCarver. However, as the years went on what he said got to be very repetitive, and tired. It seemed as if he thought the viewers had never seen a baseball game in their lives. He also got more arrogant and almost condesending in his tone that he knew more baseball then anybody. It seems as if he lost a lot of his joy after the Mets fired Zabriskie. By the time he was fired after the 1998 season he had become a bore, and it was good ridance. Listening him on Fox it seems as if his downfall is complete and now he is one of the most unbearable announcers in all of sports.

October 25, 2002
He has been anti-Met ever since leaving the Mets booth. Last season he spent much of a Mets/Yanks Saturday afternoon game talking about how the Mets threw their money away, while the Yanks were so good at spending their money (like signing Giambi at a bargain rate is a sign of the Yanks' genius). Sure, McCarver is no longer with the Yanks, but he wasn't going to say anything bad about his buddy Joe Torre's team; instead, he wanted to spew some more bile to vent his frustrations over what is now many years past.

November 5, 2002
Banger, don't take out your frustrations on Tim McCarver. He's simply the finest in-game analyst the game has ever seen. And if it's his opinion that the Mets threw their money away, he's allowed to voice it. Their record this year certainly supports Tim's theory. Why would McCarver be anti-Met? He left his home in Philly in 1983 to come to work for a losing franchise, then was there through the good years, and got himself established as a national personality on ABC, CBS, and FOX because of his work with the Mets.

Did anyone notice that wherever McCarver winds up, that team goes to the World Series? (Phils, Mets, Yanks, Giants)

January 7, 2003
The Mets declined to renew McCarver's contract because he was often very critical of the Mets during broadcasts. That's why they brought in Tom Seaver, who vowed to be less controversial and who would also act as a part-time spring training coach for the team, as a replacement. McCarver still bears a grudge for it, and especially against Bobby Valentine, who is rumored to have been one of the people calling for the non-renewal.

Even after Yankee love-fest Yes Network decided not to renew his contract (presumably for similar reasons), McCarver won't bad mouth the Yankees because he's buddies with Joe Torre and they have the same agent.

As for his theory: the Mets made a bunch of moves last season and all of them backfired. By the time the Mets and Yankees faced each other, the Mets already had a horrible record and the new acquisitions were having their worst seasons in a long time. It doesn't require any theoretical astuteness to use hindsight and say that it was a waste of money to acquire guys having incredibly subpar seasons.

However, it does require bitterness to do so throughout the course of an entire broadcast.

Won Doney
September 4, 2003
I don't care what anyone else thinks about him, but I honestly think that Tim McCarver is the most annoying broadcaster in the game. I was glad when they fired him. Has he ever said anything positive about the Mets?

November 10, 2003
In the run up to the 1986 World Series Tim McCarver was the announcer on Channel 9 (Secaucus, NJ). Between innings he did a commercial for some event or other (I don't remember what) with the admonishment, "Don't fail to miss it." This went on night after night. I finally wrote to the advertising manager of channel 9 that something was seriously amiss. (No internet or e- mail in those days). She called me a couple of days later and wanted to know just what I meant. I explained that "Don't fail to miss it" translated into "Don't go." The response, "Oh my God, we'll pull it immediately." And that is why I have a pewter paperweight on my desk from Channel 9 in Secaucus.

December 22, 2003
Tim McCarver is without a doubt the most annoying voice in all broadcasting, not even just sports (so I'm including guys like Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilley). You would have to be a big cricket or soccer fan to listen to him and not cringe at his inaccuracies, over explanation, and just plain stupidity about baseball. I prefer to forego my state of the art Sony surround sound system and listen to AM radio in mono while watching games that McCarver is babbling at. He should seriously give it up while there are still fans dumb enough to think he has any dignity left.

Tony Marino
December 25, 2003
Aaron, you couldn't be more wrong. McCarver is class personified. Everyone ranks on him for over analyzing but I enjoy his insight even if I've heard it before. Within 162 games it is difficult not to be redundant. But, overall Tim added an enthusiasm and a honest insight that is rare. He doesn't care what people think, he just does his job and his love for the game is obvious. And Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh, like Tim McCarver are great Americans who tell it like it is and some people just do not like to hear the truth. Tim is the voice of the truth and never held back in his assessment of the Mets, good or bad.

January 3, 2004
Comparing Tim Mac to Rush Limbaugh is scaring me!

I'm tired of him as well but respectful of his work and knowledge.... Great NL catcher in the 60's, once hit 13 triples in a season and was a great bunter

Mr. Sparkle
January 3, 2004
I'm sick of all the whining about McCarver. He was a great announcer who always made the game interesting and exciting. He never was a homer, although he was exhilerated by the Mets play in the 80's. He criticiized them when they deserved it and credited them when they did well. He was not political and said what he thought. Tim,despite what people may say, was a great announcer.

original mets 62
August 10, 2004
A great baseball mind who added class , intelligence and humor to the game. Unfortunately he had too many criticisms of Bobby V. Can you imagine what he would say about the Metropolitans of today if he was still working for the them.

October 18, 2004
At his best, McCarver was really good at calling things *before* they would happen, not rehashing them once they'd already occurred.

One example that I found remarkable was in 1990, when pitcher Bill Gullickson returned to the U.S. after two years in Japan. Gullickson was a fairly decent hitter, and McCarver remembered that one of the things he would do was to fake a bunt, then pull back and swing away. He said to look for it, and on the very next pitch, that's exactly what came -- and Gullickson doubled.

Sometimes he would get silly and amuse himself (and not us) with little jokes. But some of the wordplay was cute, like when he noted, "The Expos are a team for all weather, with [Tim] Raines and [Razor] Shines."

And I generally enjoyed his Memphis accent and the way his pitch would rise when he got excited. The network suits obviously told him to tone it down when he was doing gigs like the Olympics. "Man! Ah'm tellin' you -- he hit that ball a TON!"

super met kyo!
October 24, 2004
I love Tim McCarver. He's some one I grew up with, and was the voice of the team that means so much to me. I don't think he was ever unfair to the Mets. I wish he was still calling the games.

Jonathan Stern
January 22, 2005
McCarver was, and perhaps still is, the best color analyst ever. I cannot begin to count all the times he predicted things correctly. Also, while Fran Healy tells you what you saw, McCarver tells you what you didn't see. I also like his voice, what Lupica once referred to as McCarver's Memphis-hued brand of baseball music.

Towards the end, McCarver did get a little above the game. It had become more about him and his insights, less about the Mets. And he giggled a little too much for my tastes. I do not mean to take away too much from him. But this was, and still is, a problem. If the Mets wanted to fire him because of this, and/or because he would not play the role of company man, they were well within their rights to do so, although I wish they hadn't. But to throw him out into the cold with less than two weeks to go before the start of the 1999 season was disgraceful. He deserved better than that, and if the Mets were afraid that Steinbrenner would have grabbed him had they acted sooner, well... he grabbed him anyway! Another Mets PR disaster.

Worse, ownership forced his replacement, Tom Seaver, to handle the bulk of the press conference that followed, making Seaver look like a bad guy in front of his own fans. The Mets thought that we'd all be so overjoyed to see The Franchise back at Shea we wouldn't notice what they did to McCarver. It was a classic example of Mets mismanagement and corporate double-talk, and it left a very bad taste in my mouth for quite some time afterwards.

Master of the Universe
February 16, 2005
Tim McCarver is simply the best baseball broadcaster of all time.

He has a great voice. I never watch spring training games, but while he was with the Mets, I would always tune in once, just to hear his voice. Then I knew that spring and baseball were coming. Since he's gone I never do this.

Tim McCarver is also the most knowledgable broadcaster around today. He provides insights that other broadcasters can only dream of. If I have one quibble, it's that after he provides these great insights, he proceeds to repeat them again and again.

Tim McCarver also has a great sense of humor. No other baseball broadcaster ever made me laugh as much.

Also he makes every broadcaster he works with, from Steve Zabriskie to Joe Buck better.

Firing Tim McCarver didn't make the Mets a bad team but it was a huge disservice to their fans.

Jonathan Stern
February 28, 2005
While growing up near Philadelphia rooting more or less for the Phillies, I witnessed the beginning of McCarver's broadcasting career. A kid though I was, McCarver seemed to my youthful eyes and ears weak, tentative, and awkward. I distinctly remember thinking, "This guy will never make it."

I also remember seeing Tim interview players while wearing his Phillies uniform. McCarver was activated in September, 1980, helping the Phils down the stretch while becoming one of the few ballplayers ever to play in four decades.

May 20, 2005
Hands down the finest Mets broadcaster of my generation. I am too young to remember the Kiner, Nelson and Murphy days...and to know they let McCarver go for that blowhard Seaver...yipes!

June 3, 2005
Although Tim got a bit annoying after a bunch of years as the Met color commentator, that seemed to coincide with the decline of the team, so I don't pin a lot of the minutia and over-analysis stuff completely on him because quite frankly the Mets had become pretty boring at the time Tim was shown the door.

I will always remember going to a Met-Padre game in 1987 at Jack Murphy Stadium, where I took a giant paper bag and used a marker and made a sign that simply said "Let's Go Mets". I was sitting in the box seats and the press level was directly above me. I displayed my cheapo sign to the cameras and during a commercial break between innings, Tim yelled down to me "Hey, you spared no expense for that sign, did you?". It was very funny. Back in NY a few years later, I actually rode in an elevator with Tim coming down from the Press level at Shea and I recounted to him this incident. He said he actually remembered this and he said, "You deserved that abuse!" I laughed even harder the second time. It was funny. Tim still brings back memories of the 80's championship Mets and a seemingly long gone era already of hearty Met teams with guys like Hernandez, Doc, Darling, El Sid, Hojo, etc. Those were the days!

Jacob from Shelter Rock
October 20, 2006
Tim was always a great listen. He can be critical and some teams don't want that in their broadcast. He is intelligent, fun and knows his stuff.

The only negative to him is sometimes he won't stop talking. He is great in the playoffs and World Series.

I hope he stays around a long time.

November 3, 2006
I can recite many Tim McCarver moments. Timmy was and still is simply the best. He is fair and honest. The fact that the Mets fired Tim for Tom Seaver told you that the Mets wanted the broadcasters to NOT want anyone to be fair but they wanted somebody to be a cheerleader. So they put a skirt on Tom Seaver and gave him pom-poms and allowed him to wax how great the Mets were even though they were 20 games UNDER .500. Tim McCarver gave you honesty and never cared that to be a cheerleader. I truly appreciated that about him. I have read that fans say he was annoying because he was redundant or acted like we were watching the game for the 1st time. But what fans have to realize is that maybe you know the game but how about that 7 year old that is watching the game for the first time or that 9 year old 5 days later who is trying to understand the game better. It is really arrogant and dumb to think that Tim McCarver is talking to us. He is talking to the fans who are watching the game or trying to learn the game. Like my son who is trying to learn the game. And who better to learn the game from than a catcher who has his pulse on the entire game. Tim breaks the game down and makes you understand. That is helpful. You know if people came out of their own little world you would know that McCarver is just trying to teach the game to the youngsters. The game is about the kids. Not you.

Michael Leggett
November 11, 2006
He was an excellent play-by-play commentator, giving us many a good story along the way, thought critically, and gave one a sense of being there on NY Mets Broadcasts over Superstation WOR/WWOR:

I think that the problem is that the Networks, ESPECIALLY FOX, look at him as a one-dimensional lead baseball analyst, when play-by-play is his forte'.

Vinny A
February 4, 2007
Without a doubt the best broadcaster in the game. He basically TAUGHT me the game of baseball, as I was growing up watching Met games. I do like him as a national broadcaster when I see him (on FOX I believe).

November 4, 2007
Tim is probably the most intelligent guy ever to be in a broadcast booth. He points out things that most of us don't even think about looking for. His book "Baseball for Brain Surgeons" is just loaded with inner facts about the game. Tim really knows his baseball!

As smart as he is, though, Tim could improve in one area - his word usage. Over the years, I've heard him say "bad success." Success, by itself, means 'favorable or desired outcome.' This, in my opinion, is of the positive nature. Is there any such thing as bad success? Perhaps he should say "failure" instead.

Also, when the first batter of an inning reaches base, Tim describes it by saying "They have their leadoff runner on." If a team has a leadoff runner at all, of course he's going to be on. He could rephrase this line by saying "They have their leadoff batter on" or "They have a leadoff runner."

Still, Tim is a brilliant baseball man. There's nobody better at describing things on the diamond than he is, even if his terminology could use a little fixing.

August 4, 2008
McCarver was great as a Mets announcer during the '80s but once he became a FOX guy his fame went to his head.

December 11, 2008
All of these comments about McCarver (good and bad) are true.

In many ways Tim was a revolutionary announcer. And growing up with him, there's no doubt he molded my thinking as a young fan. Of course, when I became an adult I realized that his "facts" are not as clear cut, and that most of the time he just likes the sound of his voice and the hot air coming out of his mouth.

He spoke with such authority and detail, that if you didn't know any better, you would believe every word he said.

The level of criticism he gave players had to have been unprecedented, even early on, folks, not towards the end. He was NEVER a homer, like all the others from other teams.

He never gave Jeff Kent a chance in NY after the Cone trade, always yelling at him from the booth for not being in the right cut-off man position or something.

Anyway, Tim is good nostalgia for me, but also was loaded with flaws. That being said, I loved all the TV and radio announcers in the 80's. I didn't dig Gary Thorne teaming up with Tim later on.

Regarding Tim's FOX run with Joe Buck: simply awful. Awful. He truly comes off as a self-anointed moral authority on steroids, salaries, and continues to make ridiculous comments and observations. It's like he enjoys assassinating the character of some players and organizations.

Looking back, as a kid, I loved Tim. But as an adult I realized how he warped so many minds with his over analysis, PSYCHOanalysis, and criticism. Baseball is supposed to be a FUN game.

March 9, 2009
At his best, Tim was an outstanding announcer with the Mets. I remember him ALWAYS being very critical of Davey always playing Straw too deep in right field for the weaker right handed hitters....and he was right about that.

But toward the end, and to this day, I feel he has become way too annoying to listen to. I'm not sure why, maybe because back when he was with the Mets, I was a little kid still learning the game, so his knowledge was refreshing. Now that I'm an adult and have seen thousands of games, I don't need him to "point out the obvious" to me. So when he does it's just more annoying than anything.

I think if people think about it, that might be the main reason he isn't liked today...for the most part anyway.

July 13, 2010
Timmy brought life back to Ralph after 4 years of Steve Albert, Art Shamsky, and Lorn Brown. Ralph Kiner had become Ralph Coma and Tim got the old Ralphie back that we all loved. Naturally, in Tim's first game Ralph introduced him to us as Tim McArthur but that was part of the charm along with two ballplayers who knew baseball.

How many times have I heard Ralph since 1970 say that the key to hitting is swing at your pitch in your zone until two strikes and then choke up a little on the bat and go with the pitch. He always said get ahead of the count and look for a pitch in a zone and if the pitch isn't there DON'T SWING AT IT.

My favorite Ralph/Tim moment was one night in Pittsburgh. The Mets had won and the camera was on Ralph and Tim in the booth and Ralph is attempting to sign off and is just butchering it. Tim is watching Ralph and first we see a slight crack of his lips and then as Ralph digs himself deeper we see Tim with a smile and finally an exasperated Ralph says, "ah the hell with it, we'll see you all tomorrow night from Three Rivers" and McCarver totally loses it laughing and they are gone. What a moment.

Shickhaus Franks
January 12, 2011
What can you say about a man who survived the 1989 Bay Area Earthquake, could've had "Prime Time" Deion Sanders wind up in intensive care, did two Winter Olympic broadcasts and even had a go of covering the Tournament of Roses Parade? But his "cheerleading" in the 2006 NLCS with Joe "The Jerk" Buck for the Cardinals to win was just too much to take. He sometime thinks he invented baseball.

Jonathan Stern
December 9, 2011
Congrats to Tim for his induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame! It's about time.

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