“It was the Dodgers.” Players and staff mourn the loss of Vin Scully

Joe Davis brought the news to viewers late in the fifth inning from the visiting TV booth in Oracle Park where, fittingly, the Dodgers and Giants were playing.

“Well, it is with heavy hearts that we deliver some really difficult news,” Davis began. “At 94, Vin Scully has passed away.”

The silence.

“Hard. Hard,” Davis said shortly after ending his SportsNet LA broadcast at the same stadium Scully called his last game. “But I think it was mine, like it was my responsibility to follow him and do my best to honor him by sitting in that chair and telling stories and calling Dodger baseball.”

Davis replaced Scully in 2017. Scully had been the team’s warm voice for 67 seasons. I covered the franchise’s move from Brooklyn to Los Angeles. His stories were heard on transistor radios in the Colosseum crowd when the team moved west in 1958 and on flat-screen TVs when he said goodbye in 2016. He was also popular than any player in any era, a consistent summer presence throughout the region. for generations.

Replace icon was impossible. Scully’s advice for Davis was the same advice Red Barber gave him in 1950: Be yourself.

“I just tried to do my best to pay tribute to the guy who I consider to be the greatest of all time,” Davis said. “And I said on air tonight and I will say it forever: there will never be another like him. The greatest that ever was and the greatest there is.

“So we just tried to do our best to relay stories that we think kind of made Wine, Wine and just try to take what was a difficult situation for everyone I know who had the felt like I knew Vin from listening to it for so long and made some people smile on a tough night.

In the Dodgers dugout, word started to spread mid-game about Scully’s passing.

“I knew he was sick,” Dodgers coach david roberts said. “But when it came to the finality, I was still shocked.”

Justin Turnerthe team’s longest-serving position player, discovered it when he returned to the batting cages after the fifth inning.

“It was the Dodgers,” Turner said. “I think a lot of heavy hearts here tonight are hearing this news.”

A Lakewood native, Turner immediately thought back to his first encounter with Scully, when the third baseman was still playing for the New York Mets early in his career.

“We were in town playing the Dodgers and he came into the visiting clubhouse to say hello,” Turner said. “He told me he was another redhead, and we redheads have to stick together. I thought it was crazy that Vin Scully came into the clubhouse to find me and say hi.

Receiver Austin Barnes recalled listening to Scully’s calling plays growing up in Riverside.

“The way he called the games, you felt like home, like he was in your living room,” Barnes said. “Super sad. Obviously, he will be missed. It’s a bit like my childhood, growing up, listening to it.

Clayton Kershawwho was there for more of Scully’s career than any other current Dodger, had some good flashbacks of his own on Tuesday night.

The pitcher was watching a televised commemoration of Scully in the clubhouse postgame when highlights from his 2014 no-hitter played across the screen. Scully’s sweet voice narrated that match, just as he had half a century earlier, when the broadcaster called Sandy Koufax’s perfect match.

“All the people he’s calling, the no-hitters, the perfect games, the World Series, all those things, to me to be a very small part of that is very cool,” Kershaw said. “His voice has never changed. ‘It’s Dodger baseball time’, ‘Good evenings’, all of that will resonate with me. It was something very special to be able to have him with us, and he We will miss it, that’s for sure.

The news of Scully’s death reverberated throughout the rest of the sport as well.

In Anaheim, Angels manager and Fullerton native Phil Nevin recalled his interactions with Scully, from counting games while listening to him as a child, to when he first heard Scully call his name during a show when he reached the major leagues.

“It was like, ‘Wow,'” Nevin said, “‘I’m in the big leagues.'”

During Scully’s final season in 2016, Nevin was the Giants’ third baseman coach. During a game against the Dodgers that year, he went to the press box to take a photo with the retired broadcaster.

“It was one of my favorite baseball moments,” Nevin said.

Perhaps the most memorable highlight of that year: Charlie Culberson’s home run in Scully’s last home game at Dodger Stadium, a win that clinched the NL West for the Dodgers and was punctuated by Scully singing ‘Wind Beneath my Wings’ to a sold-out crowd.

“We [were] we’re all celebrating and we’re all turning our attention to Vin and his wife Sandra,” Culberson, who now plays for the Texas Rangers, told reporters after their game on Tuesday. “It was a pretty cool moment…People will talk about Wine forever.”

Online, memories of Scully also flooded social media on Tuesday.

Longtime Dodgers Spanish-language broadcaster Jaime Jarrín wrote in Spanish that he “lost the architect of my professional life; a dear friend.

Magic Johnson, big owner of the Lakers and co-owner of the Dodgers, said “he had a voice and a way of telling stories that made you think he was talking only to you.”

The rawest emotions were on the Dodgers’ television and radio waves.

Former Dodgers outfielder and longtime radio analyst Rick Monday’s voice cracked as he broke the news on the radio show.

“For those of us who were touched by him, listened to him and learned from him,” Monday said, “it’s a profound loss.”

During SNLA’s postgame show, former Dodgers pitcher and current TV analyst Orel Hershiser held back tears.

“It’s really difficult,” he said, “because it’s a part of your life that you don’t want to lose.”

As the Dodgers beat the Giants 9-5 on Tuesday, Davis spent the final innings weaving stories about Scully. I shared how Scully fell in love with the sport, his rise as the voice of the Dodgers, and his impact on other broadcasters. He recalled his first interaction with Scully in 2015, how he ignored two calls from him because he didn’t recognize the phone number. Then I listened to the voicemail. It was Scully who introduced himself.

“Everyone feels like they know him and so many people grew up listening to him and learning baseball from him,” Davis said. “So I felt a responsibility to all of these people to understand that it’s just as difficult for them and to try to be, I guess, the steady voice like Vin had been for so many people during If long time.”

In the end, after the Dodgers secured the Finals, they formed their on-court handshake lines with a sobering graphic on the video card above. It was a photo of Scully in the cabin. 1927-2022.