It has been one of the great mysteries of sports broadcasting: How does Vin Scully keep going after more than 60 years in the business?
The 84-year-old Dodgers play-by-play icon explained in the March issue of Golf Digest his thought process in returning for a 63rd season behind the microphone.
"Some people die twice: once when they retire, and again when they actually pass away. Fear of the first one is a big incentive for me to keep working," Scully told Golf Digest. "Players, writers, people who work at the ballpark and front office -- when I quit I know I'll never see them again. I've never been the type to come to the ballpark and hang out; I've gone to one game in the last 60 years that I wasn't working. I keep working because I don't want to lose my friends."
Scully, at the tender age of 25, began broadcasting Brooklyn Dodgers games in 1950 alongside Red Barber and Connie Desmond. Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Don Newcombe and Preacher Roe were among the legends who played for the Dodgers that season.
Over the years, Scully has had many legendary calls. One of the more famous was his description of Kirk Gibson's dramatic home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series for the Dodgers against the Oakland Athletics. The voice of baseball says he had an assist with that call.
"My Kirk Gibson home-run call is brought up to me quite often, and my answer is, sometimes God helps you through these things," Scully said. "I honestly believe that, because before he blasted the ball into the right-field bleachers I had no inkling I would say, "In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened!" It just spilled out of me, and it was a good line, but it was God's line, really, not mine."
Golf Digest senior writer Guy Yocom also touched on Scully's dislike of "Casual Fridays."
"I was dismayed by the advent of casual Fridays," Scully said. "If I were a boss, I wouldn't want someone to give me one casual day a week. There was a Dodger order on dress code one day, and it read, 'Jeans are allowed, but no holes.' I thought 'Oh, wow.' I just think dressing down can have a subtle effect on your performance. I've worn a jacket and tie since I started announcing. It’s my uniform. When I get dressed, I'm suiting up as much as a ballplayer or golfer. I'm setting the tone, getting my mind on my job. I always do it with the idea that I'm coming into people's homes."
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