More Confusing: Tim McCarver’s Broadcast Or His Scorecard?

  • Timothy Burke

Fox baseball analyst Tim McCarver — stripped of the calming influence provided by his usual broadcast partner Joe Buck — demonstrated an amusing lack of knowledge in subjects ranging from human anatomy to prehistoric anthropology during Saturday’s airing of the Red Sox at the Rays in St. Petersburg.

He also showed us the mess of a scorecard he created during Tuesday’s All-Star Game.

McCarver — whose mistaken conclusions are usually attenuated by the black hole of boredom that is Joe Buck — was instead enabled by fellow occaionally-confused play-by-play man Dick Stockton, who filled in. See what we mean:

In order, here’s the topics McCarver should read up on before next week’s broadcast.

1. LINGUISTICS. “Turnaround” in the sense McCarver used it has an identical meaning in both British and American English. If McCarver was attempting to refer to the wide area of a dead-end road that allows vehicles to turn around, however, that’s a uniquely American thing. We’ll leave his verbal attempt at an unidentifiable dialect without comment.

2. TRIGONOMETRY. If Rays’ pitcher James Shields had performed a “full 360,” he would be performing at the same level he did last season, which is to say terrible. Thankfully for Rays fans, the All-Star pitcher instead has performed a “180” or a reversal of direction.

3. ANTHROPOLOGY. One would assume that spending 21 seasons in the most direct participant-observer relationship possible to study the behavior, behind the plate, McCarver would have noticed the vast majority of professional baseball players run toward first base upon making contact with the baseball (the Molina tribe being an example of the handful of players who reject this dominant cultural norm).

4. STATISTICS. Having been able to make neither head nor tails of whatever McCarver blathered about how .500 teams play .800, we suggest he start with a discussion of the regression toward the mean.

5. MEDICAL ETYMOLOGY. McCarver foolishly thinks the oblique abdominal muscle just got its name “a few years ago.” Sure, if you’re counting 1702 as a few years ago. Given McCarver referred to the year 1968 as being “recent” during the same broadcast, his awareness of the passage of time is questionable, though time is a subjective concept relative to the length of your own existence and maybe Tim McCarver has been a giant sequoia all this time and nobody noticed.

No, Stockton and McCarver do not have to go to Trigonometry Saturday School together, as some in the Twitter community demanded, as an oblique angle is very much a real thing.

6. ARCHAEOLOGY and/or GEOGRAPHY and/or ORTHOGRAPHY. There are cave paintings in Spain, yes, but no language because writing had yet to be invented for tens of thousands of years. Also, Spain is on a different continent than Egypt.