Legendary Los Angeles Dodgers play-by-play man Vin Scully has been broadcasting games since 1950. Though he has cut down on his travel schedule, some 63 years later, he's still going strong and still at the top of his game.
Scully is so good that he doesn't even need an analyst beside him. His engaging style and tremendous storytelling skills are more than enough to fill up a broadcast. Now, the 85-year-old Scully has taken to a new venue to regale a newer, hipper kind of crowd—Twitter.
Yes, Scully is tweeting. On Wednesday night, he took over the team's Twitter feed.
The beauty of Scully—and one of the reasons he's become one of the celebrated announcers in the history of professional sports—has always been his ability to describe game action in a way that resonates with fans. His unique, folksy style has been a hit with several generations, and the Twitter world is just finding that out.
Almost immediately after his first tweet, #VinScully was trending worldwide.
Hi everybody and a pleasant Wednesday evening to you, wherever you may be. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
A classic Scully greeting, indeed.
Scully talked about his personal history covering the Dodgers-Yankees rivalry over the years—certainly a storied one.
I broadcast the Yankee/ Dodger World Series in '53, '55, '56, '63 and '81. No way I could have imagined tweeting a game. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
Since Scully no longer travels farther west than Arizona to cover games, he described what New York means to him.
Ebbets Field is gone. Old Yankee Stadium is gone & I haven't been to the new one. New York is basically a city of memories for me #VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
When the person working with Scully told him he was such a hit on Twitter, he replied in his typically non-assuming manner.
Upon telling Vin he is already trending in the United States, "Wow! Hot diggity dog. Well, Puig just bunted for a base hit." -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
He took time to respond to questions as well. He recalled a couple highlights of his illustrious career and explained how he stays so engaged during games and the steps he takes to continue being energetic at the ripe old age of 85.
Two of the biggest thrills: One would be Larsen's perfect game, and the other would be the Dodgers winning the '55 World Series. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
In talking about the beginning of his career, he recalled the man whom he eventually replaced, the legendary Red Barber.
Red Barber did it so effortlessly that I was overwhelmed. I thought, “Oh my gosh, I’ll never be able to do that.” -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 19, 2013
No worries there, Vin, Red is smiling from up above at what you've achieved.
And the player he believes was the greatest of all time?
Scully also fondly recalled an endearing trait of the Tigers' former stadium.
The scariest in broadcasting for foul balls, old Briggs Stadium. The booth was so close to home you could hear the hitter grunt. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
During his Twitter journey, Scully did take some time to do some play-by-play as well.
Got him at second base. What a play, wow. Andre Ethier just made a really good play. Right on the money to Ramirez. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Yahoo! Sports baseball expert Tim Brown just tweeted what I've been thinking/doing all night.
Am I the only one reading Vin Scully's tweets in Vin Scully's voice?— Tim Brown (@TBrownYahoo) June 20, 2013
And, Scully's thoughts on the designated hitter.
Hmm...Scully's been broadcasting Dodgers games in the National League since 1950. Why does that answer not surprise me?
Scully also gave his view of Dodgers' prized rookie Yasiel Puig and his free-swinging ways just before he got plunked with a pitch in the fifth inning.
Now here's Puig, watch his head. That last at-bat he was swinging wildly. Whoa, did that get him? Yeah. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Scully poked a little fun at the Yankees and their current inability to break out at the plate. Not a complete zinger, but in typical Scully fashion for sure.
Four-nothing. Phil Hughes has not fooled anybody. The Dodgers have some pretty good batting averages compared to the Yankees. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Scully talked about his love for baseball and why he chose MLB over many other sports he covered early in his career.
Why MLB? "I did the NFL for about 8 years, PGA for 14 and a few of tennis matches. I played sandlot ball. I played in college." -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Unless you've played baseball, you don't know how difficult it is. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Now here is a little known fact: Vin Scully once played against a future president. Considering how they played that day, it's obvious why they chose different career paths.
Scully has seen some of the best players in the history of baseball. But even after 64 years in the booth, it's obvious that he thinks Yasiel Puig is something special after witnessing an opposite-field home run at Yankee Stadium.
Holy Mackerel, it's Puig! He is unbelievable.-#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
He even responded to a Dodgers beat writer's tweet, giving Puig's solo shot a name.
.@billplunkettocr Big Puig Apple!— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
He followed with even more platitudes for the Cuban sensation.
Yasiel Puig has got a bunt single, a stolen base, and a home run. He is unbelievable. His talent is absolutely breathtaking. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
I’ve never seen anybody do what he has done in such a short period. He’s been remarkable, a 5-tool player who constantly shows the tools -VS— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Scully believes that with Puig in the fold, along with the returns of injured stars, the Dodgers aren't out of it at this point of the season.
Kemp back, and Crawford back, to go along with Gonzalez, Ramirez and Puig. I have to believe they’ll make a run. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Here is a Scully gem that every single broadcaster/announcer should file away and keep bookmarked in their minds.
Once again, in the typical humble manner in which he's known for, Scully responds to the many folks on Twitter who were grateful for his time and efforts.
In response to all of the 'thank you's,' "Well, I don't think I really did very much. Thank you all." -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
No, Mr. Scully—what you've done is show nothing but class, professionalism and excellence for seven decades. Your contributions to the sport are forever priceless and immeasurable.
Thanks so much for joining me on Twitter and good night. -#VinScully— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 20, 2013
Doug Mead is a featured columnist with Bleacher Report. His work has been featured in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, SF Gate, CBS Sports, the Los Angeles Times and the Houston Chronicle.
Feel free to talk baseball with Doug anytime on Twitter.