Vin Scully, one of baseball’s most beloved broadcasters, will return to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a record 65th season in 2014.
"I can tell you from the bottom of my heart that I have always felt that I am the most ordinary of men who was given an extraordinary break of doing what I love to do at a very early age," Scully said on Friday. "I pray that I’ll be allowed to do it for at least one more year.
"As far as I’m concerned, it could have been one line in the note sheet tonight. But I don’t take any of it for granted in any way, shape or form. I know that this miracle was given to me, and I could lose it in 30 seconds between the time I leave here and go up to the booth. I’m just so blessed to be doing what I love to do and full of thanks."
The 85-year-old Scully said he is quite impressed by what the new ownership group has brought to the Dodgers, along with the energy fans are creating at the ballpark. The club has surged from last place in the NL West to a lead of 9 1-2 games.
"I do think that the success of the team had something to do with it," Scully said. "These last 50 games, coming to the ballpark and watching them pull out some miraculous victories, it was so thrilling — even for someone who had seen however many games I’ve seen before.
"It became so much exciting again and so much fun. I don’t really know how I would have felt had they stayed in last place with 30 some-odd games left. I probably would have come back, anyway, because I love it so much, but this made it pretty easy. And as long as I feel the emotion, I feel like I should be here."
Scully began his professional baseball broadcasting career in 1950 with the Brooklyn Dodgers, and he has called three perfect games, 25 no-hitters, 25 World Series and 12 All-Star games. With every passing year, the adoration of Dodgers fans and the city of Los Angeles has humbled him even more and made him want to continue his lifelong passion.
"The thought of just suddenly walking away from all these friends in the ballpark, and this great game, and this very exciting team, and this fandom that’s so thrilled with what’s going on, I thought there’s just no way," Scully said. "The best way that I could describe it was the night of the bobblehead, a couple of weeks ago, and they played that little tribute on the screen. And the ovation was overwhelming. I was as close to crying as I’ve been in a long long time."
Scully will work all Dodgers home games and road games in California and Arizona that aren’t nationally televised. He will call all nine innings of the team’s television broadcasts on Time Warner SportsNet LA beginning in 2014, with the first three innings of each of his games simulcast on the radio.
When Scully began broadcasting, the Dodgers had yet to win a World Series. Three years later, at 25, he became the youngest person to broadcast a World Series game. In 1955, he had his most memorable moment behind the microphone, as he called the Dodgers’ only championship in Brooklyn.
"The Dodgers are overjoyed to have Vin back with the team in 2014," Dodgers Chairman and Owner Mark Walter said. "Vin IS Dodger baseball. The Dodgers, the sport of baseball and the city of Los Angeles are extremely fortunate to have him in our midst."
Scully also has called Dodgers World Championships in 1959, `63, `65, `81 and `88, and he was elected the top sportscaster of the 20th century by the American Sportscasters Association.
"Vin brings a unique perspective to Dodger baseball," Dodgers President and CEO Stan Kasten said. "Everyone in the Dodger family and within the sound of his voice benefits each and every time we are afforded the opportunity to hear him call a Dodger game. We are thrilled to know that experience will continue through at least the 2014 season."