Joe Buck had no interest in calling MLB game when ESPN asked: ‘Ready to move on’

This season marked the first World Series in 22 years that did not feature the familiar voice of Joe Buck, who said he turned down a chance to call a baseball game for ESPN in 2022.

Buck, joining Jimmy Traina on the newest episode of the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast, said ESPN approached him about the subject over this summer’s campaign.

Joe Buck
ABC via Getty Images

“They kinda gingerly asked me to do a game during the season,” Buck said. “I think Karl Ravech missed a game, and they said, ‘Would you wanna do it?’ It might have been in St. Louis, I don’t even know. And I said, ‘Let’s just give it some time.’”

Buck left Fox for a five-year, $75 million contract to lead ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” booth with longtime partner Troy Aikman earlier this year, and Joe Davis became the new play-by- play voice of the World Series. ESPN broadcasts a variety of MLB games over the course of the season, but Buck chose to leave the diamond behind for the time being.

“I’m ready to move on from that part of my life,” Buck said. “I’ve done baseball broadcasting since I was 19, professionally. I feel like I’ve done all I could do there. If someday I wanna go back and call a few games – maybe. But I don’t have that itch. I love the sport. I love watching it. I’m so glad I did it. I’m proud of how and what I did, but I don’t have that desire at the moment to just keep doing the same thing over and over and over.”

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