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Tim McCarver passes away at 81

íViva el Birdos, viva Tim McCarver!

1968 World Series - St. Louis Cardinals v Detroit Tigers Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

Major League Baseball has announced the passing of former Cardinals player and broadcaster Tim McCarver. McCarver was 81 years old. The cause of death was announced as heart failure.

McCarver debuted with the Cardinals on September 10, 1959 and went on to play 12 seasons in St. Louis and 21 seasons overall. He retired from baseball in 1980 with a .271/.337/.388 slash line and 27.8 total fWAR before making his name as broadcaster. While he called games for various teams throughout his career, he did not broadcast for the Cardinals until April 28, 2014 and continued to call a handful of games each season through 2019 before officially announcing his retirement from broadcasting in April 2022.

For Cardinals fans especially, Tim McCarver is part of a lot of huge moments in baseball history. He is someone my brain directly associates with baseball, more of an institution than a just a man. Even though his very distinct voice had been absent from the game in recent years, it is just gonna be weird without him. So in honor of Tim McCarver and his service to baseball, here are some of the moments from his life that I think he would like us to remember.

In 1964 the Cardinals won Game 5 of the World Series after his tiebreaking homerun in the tenth inning.

Bob Gibson and McCarver appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show together after that series:

He was notably Bob Gibson’s favorite catcher, catching 977 innings in 1968, the year Gibson set the ERA record and caught Gibson’s record-setting 17 World Series strikeouts later that season.

The two teamed up once again fifty years later in 2018 for one of my favorite broadcast moments:

McCarver has called numerous World Series, famously predicting Arizona Diamondbacks Luiz Gonzalez hitting a broken bat single off New York Yankees closer Mariano Rivera’s cutter in the 2001 World Series.

All in all, Tim McCarver called 24 World Series games, the most in baseball history. After over 60 years in baseball, two World Series Championships, two All Star games played, Cardinals Hall of Fame, three Sports Emmy Awards, and the Ford C. Frick Award, Tim McCarver signs off. It’s been a heck of a time, Tim.

íViva Tim McCarver!

Tim McCarver, Orlando Cepeda, and Roger Maris