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McCarver All Wet--Thanks to Sanders

October 16, 1992|LARRY STEWART

There may be times when viewers feel like dousing the verbose Tim McCarver with ice water, but Deion Sanders actually did it--three times.

The drenchings occurred in the Atlanta locker room after the Braves' pennant-clinching victory Wednesday night.

The ice water left McCarver boiling, and he and his CBS superiors have asked National League President Bill White to do something about it.

McCarver said the first time Sanders doused him, he was so shocked that he pulled a muscle in the right side of his back. After it happened a third time--while he was doing interviews--McCarver said he went in search of Sanders in the Braves' clubhouse.

"I didn't know what I would do or say, but as I was going toward the middle of the clubhouse, Sanders was creeping up with another tub of water," McCarver said during a conference call with reporters Thursday. "He said, 'Where's McCarver?' and I said, 'I'm right here.'

"He tried to hit me with another tub that missed me, and I said, 'You know, Deion, you're a real man, you are a real man.' I thought it was a deliberate, cowardly act."

Sanders, in a taped interview with TNT's Ernie Johnson, said: "How can you be a coward for throwing water on someone? The guy just didn't want us to win and we did. He just got a little wetter than anybody else.

"He's flat-out ignorant. He's more of a coward. I never met the man, and I never spoke to him in my life. We were just having a good time."

Sanders' action was in apparent retaliation for critical comments McCarver made last Saturday about Sanders' plans to play for both the Falcons and Braves the next day.

"How can he leave in the playoffs and go play in a football game?" McCarver said. "The way I look at it, that's just flat wrong and I guess could be construed as a breach of contract."

The Atlanta Journal quoted officials of the Atlanta CBS affiliate, WAGA, as saying that White asked for copies of a tape shot by a cameraman, showing the final confrontation between McCarver and Sanders.

"I don't know what steps I plan on taking or what steps Bill plans on taking," McCarver said.

First Sanders says he's not speaking with reporters except those who work for a national network. Then he douses a network reporter with ice water because that reporter dared give an opinion.

Great guy, huh?

CBS got just what the doctor ordered--a dramatic Game 7 in the National League championship series, and the first international World Series.

With the Braves playing the Toronto Blue Jays, the Series is being called the United States vs. Canada. The Braves actually have a pretty good national following, thanks to TBS.

The right teams made it, unless you're from Pittsburgh or Oakland. But are Sean McDonough and McCarver the right team to have in the broadcast booth?

CBS could do a lot worse.

Let's give McDonough a chance. Sure, he's no Vin Scully. Or Al Michaels or Bob Costas, although he sounds a lot like Costas, a fellow Syracuse graduate.

But for a 30-year-old working postseason baseball on national television for the first time, he's not so bad.

Radio talk-show hosts and other critics have been ripping McDonough, saying he's boring. But whom do they want, Dick Vitale?

CBS, which dumped veteran Jack Buck after last year's World Series, would be wise to stick with McDonough. The feeling here is, he'll grow on the viewing public.

As for McCarver, no one can accuse him of not being prepared. And he isn't afraid to express an opinion, even if he winds up being all wet.

Radio days: If Scully, who will again work the World Series for CBS radio with Johnny Bench, would rather do the Series for television, he's not saying so.

"I've worked enough World Series on television," he said. "I love radio. For one thing, the broadcasts are less restrictive."

Another thing Scully prefers about doing radio is less attention on him.

"When you do television, you spend so much time doing newspaper interviews and things like that," he said. "One of the things I learned from Red (Barber, his mentor) is the game is what is important, not the announcers. I never like to draw attention to myself."

Scully, by the way, was named to the American Sportscasters Hall of Fame this week. He will be inducted at a dinner Dec. 3 in New York.

Add radio: When Sid Bream scored the winning run Wednesday night, this was Skip Caray's call on the Braves' radio network: "Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win!"

That's right. Five times he said, "Braves win!"

Thursday, Caray was still excited.

"It was the greatest moment of my broadcasting career," he said.

Had Caray not given up his job as TNT's NFL play-by-play announcer, he would have missed the game, since he would have been in Minneapolis preparing for Thursday night's Viking-Detroit Lion game.

TV-Radio Notes

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