Vin Scully, born Vincent Edward Scully on November 29, 1927, was an American sportscaster best known for his 67 seasons calling games for Major League Baseball’s Los Angeles Dodgers, beginning in 1950 and ending in 2016. His was the longest tenure of any broadcaster with a single team in professional sports history and the second only to Tommy Lasorda (by two years) in terms of the number of years associated with the Dodgers organization in any capacity.
The legendary Los Angeles Dodgers sports broadcaster Vin Scully died at his home in the Hidden Hills neighbourhood of Los Angeles, according to the team, after being informed by family members. The team provided no cause of death.
Vin Scully retired at age 88 in 2016, ending his record-breaking run as the team’s play-by-play announcer. In his final season behind the microphone, Scully announced most Dodgers home games (and selected road games) on SportsNet LA television and KLAC radio. He was known for his distinctive voice, lyrically descriptive style, and signature introduction to Dodgers games: “It’s time for Dodger baseball! Hi, everybody, and a very pleasant good (afternoon/evening) to you, wherever you may be.” He is considered by many to be the greatest baseball broadcaster of all time, according to fan rankings, Bleacher Report and Fox Sports.
In addition to Dodgers baseball, Scully called various nationally-televised football and golf contests for CBS Sports from 1975 to 1982 and was NBC Sports’ lead baseball play-by-play announcer from 1983 to 1989. He also called the World Series for CBS Radio from 1979 to 1982 and 1990 to 1997.
“We have lost an icon,” team president and CEO Stan Kasten said in a statement. “His voice will always be heard and etched in all of our minds forever.”
As the longest-tenured broadcaster with a single team in pro sports history, Scully saw it all and called it all. He began in the 1950s era of Pee Wee Reese and Jackie Robinson, on to the 1960s with Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax, into the 1970s with Steve Garvey and Don Sutton, and through the 1980s with Orel Hershiser and Fernando Valenzuela. In the 1990s, it was Mike Piazza and Hideo Nomo, followed by Clayton Kershaw, Manny Ramirez and Yasiel Puig in the 21st century.
The Dodgers changed players, managers, executives, owners — and even coasts — but Scully and his soothing, insightful style remained a constant for the fans.
He opened broadcasts with the familiar greeting, “Hi, everybody, and a very pleasant good evening to you wherever you may be.”
Ever gracious both in person and on the air, Scully considered himself merely a conduit between the game and the fans.
“There’s not a better storyteller, and I think everyone considers him family,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “He was in our living rooms for many generations. He lived a great life, a legacy that will live on forever.”
Although the Dodgers paid him, Scully was unafraid to criticize a bad play or a manager’s decision or praise an opponent while spinning stories against a backdrop of routine plays and noteworthy achievements. He always said he wanted to see things with his eyes, not his heart.
“Vin Scully was one of the greatest voices in all sports. He was a man’s giant, not only as a broadcaster but as a humanitarian,” Kasten said. “He loved people. Scully loved life. He loved baseball and the Dodgers. And he loved his family. I know he was looking forward to joining the love of his life, Sandi.”