Vincent Edward Scully in a word. Golden.
He still sees the game better than just about anyone. A great example of this came just this week in a Dodger game against the New York Mets. The game went 11 innings with the Dodgers winning the game on the Mets’ fifth error of the game.
The legendary Red Barber in Brooklyn trained Scully. Barber mentored Scully and told him that if he wanted to be a successful sports announcer he should never be a "homer,” never listen to other announcers, and keep his opinions to himself. I doubt Scully ever forgot that.
His first World Series broadcast came in 1953. He was 25 at the time. Scully still holds the record as the youngest person ever to broadcast a World Series game.
While some have said that the Dodgers leaving Brooklyn for Los Angeles was a crime. Possibly, the biggest crime of all would have been leaving for Los Angeles without Vin Scully.
Scully’s voice is as natural to baseball as the dirt and grass. He is very economical with his calls. When a home run is it, “She is gone!” His best calls may be when a batter drives in a run, he will say, “In comes (Insert name)”. He knows when to let a moment speak for itself.
In a strange tidbit, Scully spent more years on national television broadcasting football than he did baseball. He did play-by-play for the NFL on CBS from 1975 to 1982.
Scully left CBS to work at NBC where he would be the play-by-play announcer from 1983 to 1989. He would only call three World Series on TV.
But, two of those World Series games were legendary. Scully was on the call for game six of the 1986 World Series between the Mets and the Boston Red Sox.
Then, it would be his turn with his own Dodgers. In 1988, Scully was the television broadcaster for Kirk Gibson’s walk off home run that gave the Dodgers game one victory over the Oakland A’s.
Scully would call the national World Series broadcast for CBS radio from 1990 to 1997.
If you do not live in an area where Dodger games are televised and you have $150 free to spend. Consider buying the MLB Extra Innings package to listen to this golden voice. You get every baseball game, but just to her Vin Scully announce a game on his own is a bargain.
I only wish he was still doing baseball on national TV again. He would blow away what the major TV networks presently use for play-by-play announcing.
2009 is Vin Scully’s 60th season with the Dodgers. It is the longest tenure that any broadcaster has ever spent with one team.
We talk a lot about unbreakable sports records; here is one that looks pretty good to untouchable.
What motivated me to write this column was the call he made just a couple of nights ago.
As the Mets’ throw to the plate sailed way wide of the catcher and the Dodger runner scored, Vin would say, “It was signs of the 62 Mets and Marv Throneberry.”
He even chuckled afterwards. The call was made not to insult the Mets, but to really just say it like you saw it. The Mets were awful that night and it was completely reminiscent of that 1962 team that had the worst record in modern baseball history.
Scully is 81 and he nailed the call perfectly.
Listening to Scully is a trip back in time, and one I do not want to end anytime soon.
I hope Vin Scully can add even more years to his record.
Hold the trophy up high Vin Scully, you deserve it!