NEW YORK — Tim McCarver will make his 55th straight season of Major League Baseball his last.
The two-time champion catcher will call the World Series this year and then retire from his analyst job at Fox.
“I wanted to step down while I know I can still do the job and proud of the job I’ve done,” the 71-year-old McCarver said during a conference call Wednesday.
His health is good, McCarver said. So are his passion and energy for the game.
It was just time.
“It’s not a tough call,” he said. “It’s not a sad thing for me.”
McCarver had been thinking about moving on for a couple of years. This winter, Fox executives visited him at his home in Florida to discuss extending his contract, which expires after the 2013 season.
They never even started negotiations. McCarver had already made up his mind.
McCarver has seen other people in various businesses stay at their jobs until their health eventually forced them out, and their quality of life was often not very good after they retired. McCarver didn’t want that for himself.
A wine aficionado with a second home in California’s Napa Valley, he’d love to travel to Italy for cooking classes.
“I plan on living a very long life, believe me,” McCarver said. “I hope Mother Nature cooperates.”
McCarver could still appear on Fox or its new cable network, Fox Sports 1, in a different role in the future. But until he tests out retirement, he can’t predict whether he’ll still want to do a little broadcasting.
McCarver will call a full schedule of games for Fox this season. There was no discussion Wednesday of who might replace him in the booth for 2014.
McCarver has worked 28 consecutive MLB postseasons on network television, providing analysis for a record 23 World Series.