While the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 2016 season very much revolves around ending a World Series drought that’s now going on 28 years, the season is meaningful for Vin Scully.
The Hall of Fame broadcaster elated fans with the announcement last August he would return for an unprecedented 67th season in the booth. However, the news also came with revelation this year will be Scully’s last.
Fans got an unfortunate glimpse at what life will be like without the legendary voice of the Dodgers franchise as he missed the final week of the regular season and postseason due to a medical procedure.
Speaking at the Dodgers FanFest on Saturday, Scully reiterated he’s fully recovered from the surgery and is in good health.
Undeniably one of the largest draws for a crowd of nearly 25,000 attendees, Scully joked the rousing applause was a result of his appearance. “I’m funny looking,” he said with a chuckle. “It was very nice. It was heartwarming. After all, it could be boos, and that would be a tough time.”
Having made an illustrious career out of eloquently calling sporting events and knowing when to allow a moment to speak for itself, Scully was taken aback the Los Angels City Council approving the renaming of Elysian Park Avenue to Vin Scully Avenue.
“To be honest, it overwhelmed me,” Scully said. “For the first time in a while, I didn’t really have anything to say. I had to wait and collect my thoughts.” He went on share his hope of Walter O’Malley’s someday receiving a similar honor.
“I do hope and pray that one day the name O’Malley will be involved. Walter O’Malley took a big gamble,” Scully said. “He took his team out of Brooklyn and came here to play in a track stadium, and that was made fun of throughout baseball. Then, with his efforts, he built Dodger Stadium.”
While Scully hasn’t been on the call for many home games in recent seasons, he’s open to expanding his travel schedule in 2016, though still remaining in California. “I think I would love to finish with a game between the Dodgers and Giants,” Scully said.
Los Angeles ends the regular season with three-game set at AT&T Park, beginning Sept. 30-Oct. 2. Other visits Scully would like to make are just down Interstate 5. “I would like to go to San Diego, because I remember what thrill it was when they came in,” he said.
“And, I would like to go to Anaheim.” The Dodgers face the Padres in San Diego on April 4-6, May 20-22 and Sept. 27-29. They play two games in Anaheim May 18-19. Given the Dodgers are a team with postseason and World-Series aspirations, it may create an uneasy situation for Scully.
“I always feel funny when we do have the playoffs,” he said. “Rick and Charley do such a great job all year on radio. I feel like it’s unfair that suddenly it’s the playoffs, and I do six of the nine innings.
“I’m hemming and hawing. Maybe, because it will be the last year, I would do the playoffs but I don’t think I’d do the World Series.” Scully typically calls the first three and final three innings in the playoffs. Rick Monday and Charley Steiner call the fourth through sixth innings in such games.