Friday, November 27, 2009

The McCarver Rule, On Ice

When it comes to making observations, baseball analyst and ex-catcher Tim McCarver has a unique gift of foresight. His prediction of Luis Gonzales's winning base hit in the classic 2001 World Series -- McCarver called not only the winning hit but how and where the ball would likely be hit, and why, based on the game situation -- should be in the broadcast archives of the Baseball Hall of Fame.

McCarver's observations extend beyond unique scenarios to universal laws. He proclaims with confidence that in the history of baseball, no conversation between a batter who has reached first base and the first baseman has ever meant anything. Then, there is the now-famous McCarver Rule: every time you watch a baseball game, you're likely to see something, or a combination of things, that you've never seen before. Perhaps a triple play; or a double play where an outfielder applies the final tag; or a pitch over everyone's head that the batter swings at anyway. Something.

What I didn't realize until today is that the McCarver Rule extends to realms beyond baseball. Less than a minute into tonight's Minnesota-Michigan college hockey game, Minnesota was penalized two minutes when the refs and linesmen threw two overly aggressive players in a row out of the same faceoff. I've been watching college hockey for more than four decades -- including a short stint as the World's Worst College Hockey Announcer -- and I'd never seen that rule applied before. Frankly, I didn't even know it existed.

Was this startling occurrence in fact the McCarver Rule in operation? If so, is it now to be understood as a universal law of all sports? Kenneth, what is the frequency? Crucial research questions all that now fall to Your Humble Correspondent to investigate.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...