LOS ANGELES — He’s back for at least one more season.
Dodgers legendary announcer Vin Scully announced Friday that he’s coming back for the 2014 season. It will extend to 65 his record of consecutive seasons calling Dodger games.
According to Scully, he can thank God, his wife Sandy and a remarkable run of good health for him continuing to announce the sport he loves.
“God has been overwhelmingly kind to me and I don’t really know why,” said the humble-as-ever Scully, who turns 86 in November. “I hope I’ll be healthy enough to come back next year.
Scully also made it clear at a Friday news conference that he continues to be uncomfortable with all the fuss being made each year at his return to the broadcast.
“As far as I’m concerned, it could have been one line in the notes’ sheet,” Scully said of his return announcement. “I didn’t want to make any big deal about it and I sure didn’t want a news conference — mainly because I don’t have anything to say, really.”
Scully debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1950 after calling some college football games for CBS Radio in 1949, including a Notre Dame-North Carolina game in Yankee Stadium. Vin did so well that when there was an opening on the Dodgers broadcast team, Red Barber remembered the young redhead and moved him in as a Dodger play-by-play announcer.
The rest is broadcast history.
The 2013 edition of the Dodgers is trying to become a record-setting club after getting off to a horrible start, falling 9 1/2 games out of first place before turning it around to lead the N.L. West by 9 1/2 games going into Friday night’s opener against the Boston Red Sox.
The excellent play by the Dodgers factored into Scully’s desire to come back for at least one more year.
“It did,” he said, “only in the sense that it became exciting again. I don’t know how I would have felt had they stayed in last place with 33-some games left to play. I probably would have come back anyway because I love it so much.
“When great plays happen, I get goosebumps just like anybody who’s sitting in the stands. And as long as I’m getting excited and feeling the emotion, I feel like I should be here.”
Vin reiterated that he doesn’t have any idea when he will finally call it quits, but it’s something he and his wife discuss each year and then come to a mutual decision.
He says that there’s one thing left for him to try and get done. As usual, it’s about helping someone else.
“I am frustrated to this day and I will go to my grave frustrated if Gil Hodges doesn’t get into the Hall of Fame,” he said. “He was a marvelous player and an incredible human being. He was a World Champion player and a World Champion manager.
“If I could just get Gil Hodges in the Hall of Fame, I’d really be thrilled.”