“Sunrise sunset, sunrise, sunset!
Swiftly fly the years,
One season following another,
Laden with happiness and tears…”
~Fiddler on The Roof
I stated previously that I didn’t know if I could do a post on Vin Scully justice. And I probably still can’t. But grant me a few moments if you will to pay homage to our friend in the broadcasting booth, Vin Scully.
So many platitudes have been offered about Vin, and all of them deserved. All of them. In this day and age, there are people will find anything and everything to complain about. But what I find online is more a grumbling about there being “too much” love about Vin Scully. And if that’s the worst you can say, I think you’re doing pretty well.
The internet is not lacking in trolls and people who will complain about anything and everything . And yet that’s all people can find to complain about with Vin. Stretching it, that’s there too much coverage of him. Because they know they cannot find a fault with this man. And who else can you say that about? I dare you to find someone else who is universally loved like Vin. Even Giants fans acknowledge Vin as a wonderful broadcaster and man.
Non-Dodger players have stated that they know they’ve made it when Vin announced their name in a broadcast. Think about that. Major League Baseball players don’t feel like they’ve made it until a broadcaster of another team announced their name. Who else transcends baseball like that?
One of things I love most about Vin personally is his amazing ability to be objective. You’d think after 67 years with one team, you’d start to become a bit of a homer. But not Vin. He unfailingly remains objective, and in awe of great players, no matter who they play for, and what damage they might be inflicting on the Dodgers at any given time. He delights in any great play, whether it’s Yasiel Puig making an incredible throw or Hunter Pence‘s inability to stay still. His love of baseball is infectious and evident at all times, no matter who is making the play.
And no one makes his thoughts known as subtlety as Vin. He calls out base running mistakes, the pitching changes, the managerial decisions. Not in a mean way, ever, but just enough for you to take note of it. I myself would be horrified if Vin ever called me out for any wrong doing.
I often ask Twitter for song suggestions for my articles. My friend Ron suggested a song from Music Man, because Vin loved it. I chose Seventy Six Trombones. My dad loved that song, and since he has passed away, that brings a tear to my eye. And how many times has Vin unknowingly done that for us? Brought a tear because a story he told reminded us of our parent, grandparent, beloved friend. Or a sweet story about an opposing player that made you say “Dammit Vin, I wanted to hate him, but you went and made me like him” Only Vin has that ability. To make you feel something, something greater than what it happening on the field at any given time.
There are so many things to miss about Vin. The way he subtly cracks himself up. The way he loves babies and children. The stories that no one else has. His unabashed love of the game. But mostly, it will be the simple fact that Vin is not behind the microphone, and that we are all less enriched for it.
I don’t mean to downplay any other platitudes of Vin, but we as Dodger fans really get it. As others may downplay his significance, we know. We know what it is like the have the greatest of not just a generation, but of a lifetime, and he is ours. And what that void will be like when he’s no longer calling our games.
I made a joke about Vin with my friend Gordon. WWVD. What would Vin do? I know that Vin would not like the comparison. But we should all live our lives like Vin. Be objective. Admire the great plays in others, no matter how they might affect us. Have supreme love for the young. Be humble. Seek to bring out the best in others.
If you’ll allow me something personal — in my first article for Think Blue Planning Committee, I told you that my mother was the reason I became a Dodgers fan. My mother now is suffering from dementia, and it has been a long time since she has been able to enjoy a Dodgers game. This weekend I played some of his game for her. I like to think that somewhere in her mind, she heard. I could very much be saddened by the thought that she didn’t. But Vin brought up the saying, “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened”. And so that’s what I’ll do, with memories of my mom in good times, and with memories of Vin. I cannot think of a better way to end, then to just simply say, Thank You, Vin, for everything.