Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

Category: Vinathon (Page 1 of 5)

Vinathon: The Legends’ Legend: Vin Appreciation Day


Carl Erskine. Don Newcombe. Jamie Jarrín. And more, and more — all talking about Vin.

For our Dodger Insider tribute to Vin Scully, we presented numerous remembrances and tributes, offered in two different collections in the magazine.

The Legends’ Legend

Vin Appreciation Day

Please click each link above to read the full stories.

— Jon Weisman

Originally published September 28, 2016

Vinathon: Vin Scully’s Dodger Stadium farewell is a lovefest


By Jon Weisman

High above the champagne party in the Dodger clubhouse, the booth sits empty now. And yet it feels so full.

Vin Scully clocked in at Dodger Stadium for the final time today, a day that encapsulated so much of what made him baseball’s premier voice.

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Vinathon: Vin Scully has always been Easternmost in quality, Westernmost in flavor

Vin Scully gave us more than just Dodger games, of course. His indispensable Farmer John endorsements, his work in other sports and entertainment — it was all part of the Vin Scully Experience. Read more from Mark Langill and Cary Osborne below, via our Dodger Insider tribute to Vin Scully.

— Jon Weisman

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Vinathon: Vin Scully sings at seventh-inning stretch

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Vin Scully had a surprise for Dodger fans — his own personal rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” at the seventh-inning stretch. This one’s a keeper.

— Jon Weisman

Originally published September 23, 2016

Vinathon: ‘Welcome to my Thanksgiving’: In moving ceremony, Los Angeles begins its final farewell to Vin Scully

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By Jon Weisman

We might need time. We might need 67 years to get over this one.

Emotionally charged from the opening video salute to the final blue-carpet walk lined by Dodger players and coaches, tribute was paid to Vin Scully tonight, in an hour-long ceremony infused with heartstopping thoughts from guest speakers and heartwarming words from the man himself.

It was a valediction for Vinny, and a validation of our love.

In an evening that would conclude with John Williams conducting members of the Los Angeles Philarmonic in the National Anthem, so many moments played like perfect notes in a symphony.

“Vin is that favorite sweater of yours that you can’t wait to put on on a chilly day,” said Dick Enberg in the video.

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Vinathon: #VinTop20: No. 1, ‘She is … gone!’


In the Vin Scully Appreciation Day pregame ceremony this evening, the Dodgers finished revealing the results of the fan vote ranking Scully’s top 20 Dodger calls of all time. And here it is, No. 1: Kirk Gibson’s 1988 World Series home run.

— Jon Weisman

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No. 2, Koufax’s perfect game
No. 3, Henry Aaron’s 715th
No. 4, Returning after 9/11
No. 5, ‘If you have a sombrero …’
No. 6, Roy Campanella tribute
No. 7, Don Larsen’s perfect game
No. 8, Monday captures the flag
No. 9, ‘We go to Chicago!’
No. 10, Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter
No. 11, Joe Ferguson’s throw
No. 12, Fernandomania begins
No. 13, ‘The Squeeze!’
No. 14, Nomo’s No-No
No. 15, the 4+1 Game
No. 16, Don Drysdale’s streak stays alive
No. 17, Mike Piazza, Giant-slayer
No. 18, Yasiel Puig’s first slam
No. 19, Manny’s Bobbleslam
No. 20, Mark McGwire hits it way, way out

Originally published September 23, 2016

Vinathon: Vin Scully’s letter to the fans: ‘I needed you more than you needed me’


Dodger fans attending tonight’s Vin Scully Appreciation Day game at received this beautiful letter from Vin Scully. Click the image above to enlarge.

— Jon Weisman

Originally published September 23, 2016

Vinathon: The two words we all want to say to you, Vin

Jon SooHoo/©Los Angeles Dodgers,LLC 2016

By Cary Osborne

All of my baseball memories begin in 1986.

I recall my older brother Ryan’s baseball team that year — the Pinto Astros. It was his first year playing organized baseball. I remember opening my first pack of baseball cards, those unimaginative Topps cards with the black and white border that carried the scent of a chalky stick of stale pink gum with them. And I can actually pinpoint my first memory of listening to Vin Scully.

It was October 25, 1986. I was barely 6 years old, but the memory has stayed with me for 30 years. I can hear it now …

Little roller up along first. Behind the bag! It gets through Buckner! Here comes Knight, and the Mets win it!

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Vinathon: Vin His Own Words: An extended 2014 interview


Before the 2014 season, Vin Scully gave us an extended interview about his life and career that we presented over 21 pages in the commemorative 2014 Dodger Yearbook. Here, for the first time online, are those pages: Vin His Own Words. Click either image, and enjoy.

— Jon Weisman


Originally published September 22, 2016

Vinathon: ‘I just want to be remembered as a good man’

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The Man. The Voice. The Stories.
ESPN unveiled a wonderful collection of thoughts from around the baseball and broadcasting world on Vin Scully this morning. Click here.

By Jon Weisman

Two days ago, we gave you a selection of thoughts from Vin Scully on the Dodgers-Giants rivalry that came from his final conference call with reporters. Here are some more excerpts from that call (which you can hear all of above), looking back as well as looking ahead his retirement.

On what concerns he had about moving to Los Angeles with the Dodgers:

Well, I think the first emotion was, it was somewhat bittersweet. Maybe that’s not the proper word. But the thought of leaving New York was somewhat overwhelming. All my friends, my relatives, my high school, my college, everything was back in New York, and it was a little scary. But the other side was, “Oh, thank God I’ve got the job,” because there was a fear — and I was told this for sure — there was considerable pressure on (Walter) O’Malley that the people in Southern California wanted him to employ the announcers out here. And I’m sure for good reason. But Mr. O’Malley being the way he was, he prided loyalty, and Jerry (Doggett) and I were extremely loyal to him. We would have done anything he wanted. So there was tremendous relief that, “Wow, at least I’ve got the job.”

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Vinathon: Sandi Scully: The wind beneath Vin’s wings


If there’s no one whom we’re bigger fans of than Vin Scully, there’s no bigger fan of his than his wife, Sandi. For our Dodger Insider tribute to Vin Scully, Mark Langill provided us with this feature on the First Lady of the Vin Scully Press Box.

Click here to read the entire story.

— Jon Weisman

Originally published September 20, 2016

Vinathon: Vin Scully on the Dodgers-Giants rivalry

vin-1961By Jon Weisman

This morning, Vin Scully spoke on a conference call with the national media. Given the series beginning tonight at Dodger Stadium and the fact that he will call his final game October 2 in San Francisco, several questions circled around the Dodgers-Giants rivalry.

Here’s a sampling of what he had to say …

Sharing a memory of Giants broadcaster Russ Hodges:

With Russ, when I was back in New York, I can actually remember one night in his kitchen harmonizing with Russ and Ernie Harwell, one of the beautiful memories in my entire life.

On broadcasting Dodgers-Giants games in San Francisco, starting in 1958:

First of all, when we arrived at Seals Stadium, they did not really have any kind of a radio booth. We didn’t televise. So we actually were one row behind the regular fans, and once they realized that we were doing, for instance, a beer commercial live, why, they’d start hollering, just good-naturedly, but they’d start hollering the names of all the other brands of beer that they could possibly think of. So that taught us to record all the commercials rather than be heckled by the fans. And (also), in all honesty, I’d be doing the game at Seals Stadium, and a fellow would turn around and just say to me, “Do you have a match?” It was that informal and that close. So that was an experience. But it was new, it was exciting, and the fans were fun.

At Candlestick, the wind was a nightmare, but I also thought that the surroundings affected the personality of the audience. I could be completely wrong, but it was cold and raw, windy, and I think the people in the stands were unhappy and sometimes would take their unhappiness out. I mean, we actually had one or two players, if I remember correctly, go up into the stands over somebody making some terrible remark.

But once they moved to AT&T Park, it’s completely different. The fans are good-natured, they’re happy, they’re fair, they’re wonderful. And although I certainly know nothing about mass psychology and all that stuff, I think the weather at Candlestick kind of embittered the fan, and the weather at AT&T has made it a wonderful party atmosphere. No meanness at all.

On the essence of the Dodgers-Giants rivalry:

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Vinathon: In a career so improbable, the impossible has happened: We have to bid Vin Scully farewell


Our Dodger Insider tribute to Vin Scully hits the Dodger Stadium stands tonight — distributed free at the autogates (one per vehicle) and at Fan Services booths (for those who arrive via alternate transportation) through September 24, and then to every fan with the special commemorative cover on Fan Appreciation Day, September 25.

To lead off our salute to the beloved broadcaster during his final homestand with the Dodgers (sigh), here’s my piece trying to capture what he has meant to his listeners for the past 67 seasons — and what happens for us now, as we confront the reality of his upcoming departure.

Click here to read the entire story.

— Jon Weisman

Originally published September 19, 2016

Vinathon: Perhaps for the last time, Vin Scully takes us into the ninth inning of a no-hit attempt

Vin Scully in the booth at Dodger Stadium, earlier this month. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Vin Scully in the booth at Dodger Stadium, earlier this month. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

By Jon Weisman

Vin Scully is the king of calling no-hitters, after all. So, nearing the climax of his farewell season, maybe the baseball gods felt it was time for one more for the road.

At the end of a head-spinning day at Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers were nealry no-hit for the third time in the past two seasons and the second time at Dodger Stadium in the past 362 days, with Matt Moore coming one out shy of completing the feat in a 4-0 San Francisco Giants victory.

Below, you’ll find some of the words Scully shared with us, in the twilight of his magical career.

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Vinathon: Jack Riley, Vin Scully and ‘Occasional Wife’

RileyJack Riley (right), who was best known — and beloved — as Mr. Carlin on “The Bob Newhart Show,” passed away today. I mention that here because Riley got his start in television as a guest on the 1966-67 NBC series “Occasional Wife,” which had (along with a lot of subtext) a narrator by the name of Vin Scully.

Scully has several credits in Hollywood, but “Occasional Wife” was the scripted show he participated in the most, even if it was all off screen.

“There are 8 million stories in the Naked City,” Scully begins in the pilot (below). “Some are violent. Some happy. Some sad. But one of them is just plain cuckoo.”

— Jon Weisman

Originally published August 19, 2016

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