Growing up, I knew of Vin Scully, but I didn’t really know of Vin Scully. I would here his voice sometimes doing the calls on history videos and I was pretty sure he was the guy from Los Angeles, but that was about it. I live nowhere close to California so picking him up on the radio was impossible and my family didn’t have cable until I was 15, but even if we did have it, it likely wouldn’t have mattered. Those were the days when if you had the really fancy cable you might be lucky enough to get 65-70 channels, and most of them weren’t going to have baseball on them at all let alone baseball from way the hell out in Los Angeles. So it wasn’t really until the last decade or so when it became impossible not to find some sort of baseball on television at all hours of the day and night and I started subscribing to Gameday Audio that I got to hear him regularly, and it didn’t take long for me to understand what the fuss was about and why he was so respected.
Nobody, and I mean nobody, calls a baseball game the way Vin Scully does. We all have fond memories of the announcers from our favourite teams, but no matter how good they are, let’s be honest, none of them are Vin Scully. There’s just something about that guy. Not just that he’s been doing the same job for nearly 70 years, not just that he’s been everywhere and seen everything and probably called it. He’s just…Vin Scully. It doesn’t matter whether or not you love, hate or are indifferent to the Dodgers. You hear Vin Scully and you’re sucked into everything he says. Nobody paints a picture quite like Vin Scully. Nobody tells a baseball story quite like Vin Scully. Nobody tells a story that has almost nothing whatsoever to do with baseball while still managing to call a baseball game without missing a beat regardless of whether he’s on radio or television quite like Vin Scully. I’m convinced that I could listen to Vin Scully talk about literally almost anything and it would be entertaining.
And that’s why I’m sad that the end is coming. Not as sad as the generations of people that have grown up with him and still listen to this day I’m sure, but still enough to realize the significance of October 2nd. That’s the day when, barring some kind of miraculous change of heart, Vin Scully will call his final game. I’ve known it was coming for a while now, but it didn’t truly hit me until this morning when I read this excellent tribute from ESPN that it’s actually happening.
I really hope I get to listen to that last game. There will never be another Vin Scully, and I’d hate to miss out on one last go round with the one we have now.