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Everybody has a Vin story

9 Responses to Everybody has a Vin story

  1. Sadge says:

    About the only thing I like about the Dodgers is Vin Scully. He is amazing.

  2. Marc Schneider says:

    I remember when the MLB Network started, they showed the Don Larsen perfect game in the 1956 World Series. The announcers were Mel Allen and Vin Scully. It was great; when one was doing the innings, the other was silent. I loved the minimalism compared to the cacophony of bloviating nonsenese that we are subjected to now.

    • Marc, Vin once said he started watching the broadcast and shut it off quickly. He couldn’t stand to hear it. You’re absolutely right about how wonderful it was not to hear the aimless back-and-forth between two announcers. But Vin made the point that back then, he and other broadcasters were more afraid of TV critics than they are now, and critics always complained they talked too much on TV, so he in particular tried not to say much.

      Where I live, in Las Vegas, we get the Giants on DirecTV but not the Dodgers (nobody in LA seems to get the Dodgers, either), and I enjoy Joe’s idol Duane Kuiper and Mike Krukow, but they wander more than I would like. But one day, Krukow was out so the Giants simply had Jon Miller and Dave Flemming come over from the radio side, rotating every three innings to work with Kuiper. So I checked the radio. On radio, each of them worked alone, as they often do during their innings. No disrespect to Kruk and Kuip, whom I like a lot, but it was heavenly.

      • Marc Schneider says:

        Michael, I like Kuiper and Krukow, too, when I get them on MLB Network. They do a nice job, I think, of balancing their allegiance to the Giants with being honest about the game. I live in the Washington, DC area and the Nats TV announcers, Bob Carpenter and F.P.Santangelo, are the biggest homers in the world. I’m a Nats fan but I get tired of their endless promoting of the Nationals every time and infielder fields a ground ball. As for Jon Miller, he got fired by the O’s for being “too negative.” Your gain, the East Coast’s loss.

  3. SDG says:

    Does anyone know who is doing the announcing on this classic Dodgers clip? I thought it was Vin Scully but I’m not sure.

    • SDG, it’s definitely not Vin. It could be anything from the annual World Series film to a newsreel. I think Al Helfer and Bob Neal did the radio for Mutual (Helfer had been Mutual’s Game of the Day announcer, 1950-54, then quit and joined the Dodgers in 1955 when Connie Desmond’s alcoholism caught up with him, unfortunately), but that doesn’t sound to me like either of them, either. So far as I know, there’s no audio recording of that World Series. Vin has long told the story that he called the final out and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, the Brooklyn Dodgers are the champions of the world,” then got up to leave. Mel Allen burst out laughing and asked if he planned at least to say goodbye to the viewers first. Vin said he was so emotional about it, if he had said any more, he would have started to cry.

    • Marc Schneider says:

      I’m amazed the Yogi didn’t get tossed. He certainly would today, World Series or no World Series. Notice how the umpire just walked away, while a lot of the umpires today will stand in place and provoke the player even more.

      • I really think it depends on the player and the situation. The umpires found Yogi incredibly annoying–Larry Goetz once called the Yankees crybabies, and a lot of his colleagues agreed–but it’s understandable, especially in a World Series game, for a player to get upset and be cut a little slack (think of Augie Donatelli and Willie Mays). And that’s part of it, too: it was the World Series, I’m betting the umpires were told not to pull the trigger unless it was really bad, and Bill Summers had been umpiring since the dawn of time.

  4. The story of Vin and Dave Flemming in the men’s room deserves to be a classic, and will be. It may be even better than another exchange between a legendary Dodger announcer and a onetime Giants announcer. David Glass, who did the Giants in the 1980s, before that did minor league games in Florida and once met Red Barber. He asked Red if he listened to the games, and Red said yes. Glass asked if he had any advice for him. Red said, “You work alone, dontcha?” Glass said yes. Red said, “Always go to the bathroom before you go on the air.” If you’ve read Joe Buck’s terrific book, Lucky Bastard, you’ll fully appreciate that.

    I have a Vin story. I met him when I was nine. I’d written to him the year before asking how to become a baseball announcer, and my parents wrote ahead to ask if I could meet him. I was brought into the booth. He looked down at me in my Dodger helmet, with my Dodger glove, and said, “So you’re the guy who wants my job!” He was as nice as it’s possible to be. Other than my wedding day, still the greatest day of my life.

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