November 23, 2014

Legendary Dodgers Broadcaster Vin Scully Hospitalized

UPDATE (Friday morning): Vin is back home from the hospital and resting comfortably.

UPDATE: Tony Jackson is reporting that Vin’s ok, that the hospitalization was just a precaution and that he will leave the hospital tomorrow (Friday) and still come to Camelback Ranch to broadcast Sunday’s game.

Josh Rawitch, the Dodgers’ vice president for communications, spoke with Scully late Thursday. Rawitch said in an e-mail to reporters that Scully told him he had simply gotten out of bed too quickly, resulting in his falling and bumping his head. For precautionary reasons, Scully, 82, was taken to West Hills Hospital and Medical Center.

I think I speak for all Dodgers fans when I say…phew!  It’s times like this that make you appreciate every game you have with a talent like Vin Scully.

From the KNBC Web site:

Famed L.A. Dodger announcer Vin Scully was hospitalized Thursday night due to an undisclosed ailment, a family representative has said. 

He was transported from his home in Hidden Hills toWest Hills Hospital and Medical Center.

The family spokeswoman said “he’s going to be okay.”  No other details were given.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Vin!  We’ll of course post all updates as they become available.

Oh, My! Dick Enberg is the New Voice of the Padres

We’re obviously spoiled here in LA when it comes to baseball play-by-play broadcasters, but the San Diego Padres made a surprising addition to their broadcasting lineup for 2010 by hiring legendary broadcaster Dick Enberg who will serve as the team’s television play-by-play man.  Enberg will call all games, except for those that fall during the U.S. Open.

As I began writing this post, MLB.com’s Corey Brock came out with a Q&A with Enberg where he recalls being paired with former Dodger Don Drysdale in the Angels’ broadcast booth, starting way back in 1973:

“When Don Drysdale became my partner … life became brilliant. It didn’t matter if you were winning or losing. With Drysdale, the broadcasts were fun. Being with Don … he wouldn’t let you get down. I would take the losses too seriously and he would say, “C’mon professor” — he would always call me professor — “they don’t care, so you shouldn’t care. I’ll buy you a drink.” I’ve been fortunate to have so many great colleagues. With baseball, you’re with that man more than in any other sport. He was always happy. It was a shame he went too quickly.”

Geoff Baker with The Seattle Times also has a fun story on running into Enberg the other day in Peoria, where the Padres and Mariners share a Spring Training facility.

I’m really looking forward to hearing Enberg call a few innings of a Dodgers-Padres game or two, and am always thrilled when another broadcasting powerhouse comes to Southern California.  Welcome, Dick!

Photo Credit: The Seattle Times

Vin Scully to Return to Dodgers for 2010 Season

Vin Scully

Vin Scully

The most important re-signing of the Dodgers is now complete. No, it wasn’t Manny Ramirez exercising his $20 million player option – it was Vin Scully announcing that he will return for the 2010 season and then decide what his future will hold.

Fans are overjoyed at the news (see examples here). Many, like me, grew up listening to Vin on the radio and bringing the game to life in our minds. Now that I live in Arizona I relish getting back to the radio feed and catching up on the action while monitoring the GameTrax. Vin Scully’s ability to help bring the users in to the intracacies of the game using nothing more than his gentle voice is truly remarkable and something I feel privileged to be able to enjoy again for the 2010 season.

Thanks, Vin – hopefully the Dodgers will get you a world series berth as a thank-you gift.

Vin Scully: The True MVP of the Dodgers

Vin Scully

Vin Scully

It’s impossible to accurately describe the service that Vin Scully provides to Dodger fans everywhere, but the Wall Street Journal has a nice profile piece appearing in Wednesday’s edition of the paper. 

The story is now available online and is well worth a read.  And as I sit here watching the 10th inning of the one game playoff between the Twins and the Tigers on TBS, I’m reminded once again how fortunate we are to have Vin guide us through each season.

Vin was also the subject of a “One on One” interview during the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on PBS.  The full transcript follows the link and is a great look at the legendary broadcaster’s style and approach to life.

Following is a great  line from the WSJ article:

More important, Mr. Scully, who’s 81, wasn’t just setting the atmosphere but building a rapport with his audience. “I don’t announce,” he told me in an interview before Saturday’s game. “I have a conversation.”

Truer words were never spoken.

Photo Credit: The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer (PBS)

Notes from the Couch…

This week was a pretty busy week…had to prepare for a garage sale we had on Saturday and Sunday, therefore, not much time was available to catch the Dodger games on TV…I did, however, see a few things…

Joe Torre is amazing…
Last Thursday…2 outs, bottom of the 8th in St. Louis…game tied, 3-3…man on 3rd…Hong-Chih Kuo on the mound…he just struck out Ryan Ludwick…the fastball was working…next batter, Albert Pujols…Joe Torre comes to the mound…usually, Joe makes a pitching change, but instead, there was a conversation…pitch to Pujols or walk him intentionally?…we got our answer 4 pitches later – the intentional walk…so, up steps Matt Holliday – probably the hottest hitter in the NL since his trade from Oakland…I was thinking that you pitch around one great hitter to face a hot hitter?…interesting…

…then I was amazed…Kuo walked Holliday intentionally to load the bases!…this setup a lefty-lefty matchup with Rick Ankiel…in a classic battle, Ankiel swung at all 3 pitches he saw…all 3 of them were fastballs…and he didn’t make contact on ANY of them!…the Dodgers escaped and eventually won the game in 10 innings…wow!

Joe Torre is amazing, part 2…
In Atlanta on Sunday, Chad Billingsley was pitching a great game…he had 9 strikeouts in 5 innings while holding the Braves to just 2 hits and no runs…a freak hyperextension of Billingsley’s left knee led to Joe Torre pulling him after the 5th for precautionary reasons…I don’t blame him…why risk further injury at this point of the season?…our goal is to win in October, so let’s take care of our guys…

Billingsley was slated to lead off the top of the 6th inning…because the Dodgers were short of bench players (only 3 hitters were available on Sunday), Joe went to power hitting pitcher, Jason Schmidt, to pinch hit…Schmidt has 7 career home runs…what did Torre have to lose?…anyway, Jason lined a 1-1 pitch back up the middle for a single and eventually came home to score the 5th run of the game…the Dodgers went on to win, 9-1.

George Sherrill Trade
Have you guys fallen in love with George Sherrill yet?…as I mentioned in a previous post, he’ll be great out of the bullpen for us and gives us another strong lefty for matchup situations (ie – the Phillies lineup) or be the 8th inning setup guy for Broxton in the 9th…in just 2 appearances (1.1 innings), he has 3 strikeouts, 1 hold, 0 hits and 0 runs allowed…of course, we’ve only seen him twice…sooner or later, he’ll get touched up for a hit, maybe even a run…until then, the Dodgers got the better end of this trade…

Vin Scully’s Farewell Tour
The LA Times published an article last week challenging the Dodgers to send out the great Vin Scully in style…Vin announced he will come back for one more year in the booth before retiring after an incredible career…here’s my 2 cents on what should be done…#1 – Dodgers win the World Series this year and next year!…win it for Vin!…#2 – next season, let Vin choose 81 Dodger greats (1 for each home game) from his days of broadcasting and have that player, manager, coach or Dodger employee take part in throwing out the first pitch and then come up to the booth so Vin can share some great memories with that person…let VIN choose the 81, not the Dodgers…simulcast all 81 of those home games so fans can take part in the farewell – whether you are watching on TV or listening in your car on the radio…that would be awesome…