Fox Sports’ Tim McCarver will be honored in Cooperstown tomorrow as recipient of this year’s Ford C. Frick Award, an occasion that requires something of a career retrospective from the New York Times’ Richard Sandomir. There’s no shame, however, in McCarver’s walk down memory lane being overshadowed by his longtime colleague, Ralph Kiner (above)
McCarver spent 16 seasons with the Mets — “the most exciting years of my professional life” — in a delightful booth partnership with Ralph Kiner, whose stories, humor and historical gravitas have long merged with his malaprops, mispronunciations and memory lapses. Kiner called McCarver “Sid,” “Ted” and “Jim,” and “Tim MacArthur,” too. Sometimes, Kiner simply forgot his friend’s name (and his own).
Kiner once had to describe the entrance of a San Diego Padres reliever while satisfying a sponsor, American Cyanamid. McCarver had checked the sponsor lineup beforehand, saw the company’s name and said, “Oh boy, that’s tough to pronounce.” And, he added, “Sure enough, Ralph said, ‘The Padres make a pitching change, and this is brought to you by American Cyanide.’
“We were advocating cyanide pills,” McCarver said. “That’s how bad the Mets were playing.”