Navy Vet Vin Scully Was the Greatest Sportscaster Ever

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Vin Scully, the beloved voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers for more than half a century, died in Hidden Hills, California, on Aug. 2, 2022, at age 94. If you’re a baseball fan over 40, you might remember Scully as an announcer for golf and NFL games on CBS in the 1970s and for MLB games on NBC in the ’80s.

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Scully was born in New York City in 1927 and grew up a New York Giants baseball fan in the Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan. After graduating from high school, Scully served in the Navy for a year and then entered Fordham University.

The announcer never spoke much about his military service, but he did make a point to bring it up during a speech at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in the fall of 2017 when he announced that he would no longer watch NFL games, because some players had knelt during the national anthem.

“I have only one personal thought, really. And I am so disappointed,” Scully said. “I used to love, during the fall and winter, to watch the NFL on Sunday. And it’s not that I’m some great patriot. I was in the Navy for a year. Didn’t go anywhere. Didn’t do anything. But I have overwhelming respect and admiration for anyone who puts on a uniform and goes to war. So the only thing I can do in my little way is not to preach.”

Scully learned to call sporting events at Fordham and helped found the school’s radio station, WFUV. He got his big break in the Brooklyn Dodgers radio booth in 1950 when legendary announcer Red Barber added him to the team. When Barber left to become lead announcer for the New York Yankees in 1954, Scully took over.

When the team moved to Los Angeles in 1958, Scully followed and remained the team’s lead announcer until the end of the 2016 season. That’s 67 seasons in the booth for one team, a record that’s surely never to be broken.

If you’re not familiar with Scully’s work, MLB.com has posted 20 of his most legendary calls. We’ll end here with two of those, his call of Kirk Gibson’s miraculous home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series and Henry Aaron’s record-breaking 715th home run in 1974.

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