Come on Scully has always been more than the voice of Dodgers Baseball. He was an icon, a friend, a legend, a mentor, maybe even just a friendly face who treated everyone he met with respect, humility and kindness. He was more than words could adequately convey. You only had to meet him, or maybe just listen to him on game day, to feel the Vin Scully effect.
For many, Scully was their introduction to the sport. For others, he was the inspiration for their careers. For some it was both. And that impact went beyond baseball.
Patrick O’Neal — who is working in his first season as the Angels’ play-by-play broadcaster, his ninth season overall with the Angels — grew up listening to Scully’s call-up games.
“That’s how I fell in love with baseball and Vin Scully is really the reason I wanted to be a broadcaster,” O’Neal said.
O’Neal, who previously worked as a Dodgers reporter and host for nine years, first met Scully in 2005.
“He touched all of us so much,” O’Neal said. “I impacted everyone’s life here in Southern California. He’s the greatest broadcaster of all time. Not just baseball. He was the nicest person. meet for the first time and never forget your name.
Matt Vasgersian recalls his first encounter with Scully as a fan. Now also an Angels broadcaster and national broadcaster for the MLB Network, Vasgersian won a contest while at USC to call a half inning of a 1989 Dodgers game on a tape recorder with Al Downing. I put Scully on that day.
About 10 years later, Vasgersian recalled calling a Brewers-Dodgers game at Dodger Stadium — Vasgersian called games for the Brewers, the first team he worked for in his first season as a broadcaster for the major league – and heard Scully calling the same plays as him from the booth right next to him.
“It just felt so poignant to me at the time, like I had no business being here,” Vasgersian said. “I’m actually announcing the same event that Vin Scully is announcing.
“It was never about him,” Vasgersian recalled of Scully’s personality. “He was the best, he knew he was the best. … I never needed to remind anyone who he was or how great he was.
Scully’s impact went far beyond the stand. The league’s coaches and players also wanted to know and meet him.
Angels interim manager Phil Nevin began his postgame press conference Tuesday by wanting to talk about Scully.
Nevin said one of his fondest memories was hearing Scully say his name on a broadcast three years into his major league career.
“It was like, ‘Wow,'” Nevin said, “‘I’m in the big leagues.’ “
Angel Slugger Mike Trout took the time to recognize Scully before Wednesday’s game.
“It was an honor to be able to go out there and have the opportunity to play at Dodger Stadium with him calling me home plate and, you know, broadcasting the game,” Trout said.
Trout first met Scully during the early years of his major league career. Former Angels manager Mike Scioscia brought him to a media room where Scully was.
Trout couldn’t remember the details of their conversation, but said it was “a pretty special moment for me just because I got to sit down and talk to him and understand the importance of what he has. brought to the game. Just the joy that I brought.
Trout added, “I mean a lot to everyone.”