“A pleasant good evening wherever you may be…”
And so it begins.
It’s a three-hour tour that weaves Shakespeare effortlessly with a knuckle change.
83-year-old Vincent Edward Scully calls baseball games for the Los Angeles Dodgers. That’s it. Just him.
Vin Scully does not call the game with an analyst. He knows the game too well. Scully works as one part pitchman, three parts play-by-play and two parts color commentator. It’s more refreshing than any other sports broadcaster on the planet.
He owns a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, the press box at Dodger Stadium bears his name and his voice remains one of the most familiar in the world. People call Dodger Stadium and ask to be put on hold. They aren’t calling for ticket information or fan assistance. They just want to hear Vin’s voice. He’s that good.
Scully’s called Dodgers games for 61 seasons. Think about that. How many people do you know who have lived six decades? At the age of 83, Scully calls a better game than anyone. Better than Costas. Eons better than Buck. He’s still sharp and still focuses much of his daily life with the 25 men that wear Dodger blue.
When a player shows excitement in the dugout, Scully says he gives his teammates “fives.” We always check on how many wild pitches or passed balls a pitcher accumulates on his season resume’ when a runner reaches third base. Then, just before the 6th inning, we get the cherry on top. Vin tells us a story. Usually about baseball, sometimes not. Always interesting.
Scully’s team waffles around the .500 mark, wandering around the cellar in the N.L. West. It hasn’t been a banner year at Dodger Stadium. The team currently posts a losing record at home — and that’s the good news. There’s the beating in the parking lot, the daily battle over who actually owns the team and the decay of one of baseball’s glorious stadiums.
You wouldn’t notice any of that if you watch a game that Scully calls. He makes the mundane and routine seem extraordinary. Do yourself a favor and catch a game that Scully calls over the next few months or so. Vin doesn’t travel much with the team anymore, so plot out a home game on a weekend. Open a beverage and let the words wash over you.
The greatest voice to grace baseball won’t call many more games. It’s time for Dodger baseball.
Get an instant “Dash of Dachille” on Twitter. Follow him at WBALDash. You can also “like” Dash on Facebook. Just search “Dash of Dachille.”