clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Nationals’ skipper Dusty Baker on The Voice of the Dodgers, Vin Scully

Dusty Baker talked about listening to Vin Scully as a kid in California and taped a heartfelt message for the legendary announcer.

Colorado Rockies v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Washington visited Los Angeles for a three-game set in Dodger Stadium in June.

Dusty Baker, 67, was born in Riverside, California, and grew up following the Dodgers, later spending eight seasons in Chavez Ravine as an outfielder between 1976-1983.

Baker, whose Nationals were swept in three-straight games, talked during the series about growing up listening to the legendary Dodgers announcer Vin Scully, and then getting to know the so-called “Voice of the Dodgers” during his time in LA.

Scully started his job in 1950 when the Dodgers were still in Brooklyn, the year after Baker was born on June 15, 1949 in Riverdale.

Baker, as quoted by Inside the Dodgers writer J.P. Hoornstra, talked then about listening to Scully call games throughout his childhood:

"Vin Scully is who I grew up with as a kid, listening to every game. I’d be in the backyard working, have my radio in the window. I even went to a concert one time, I think it was an outdoor opera in San Bernardino. I listened to a Dodger game — I had it wired up on the other side of my mother, the transistor radio, so I could listen to the game. But my mom said, I was having such a good time — maybe she knew what I was doing — she said ‘maybe we’ll go next week too.’

"Vin Scully, he would paint the most vivid picture ever. He never stuttered or stammered or used the wrong names. He’s (88) years young.

“When I got to the Dodgers it was a dream come true to me to be around Vinny. It was Vinny and Jerry Doggett then. Then it was Vin Scully and Ross Porter, and now it’s just Vinny. I hope I get a chance to see him tomorrow.

“He has a sore throat today, which is — boy, I don’t think I’ve ever seen him have a sore throat. He’s a young-looking man. He takes care of himself and I’m certainly going to miss him. Everybody imitated Vin Scully’s calls, his diction, his storytelling, but there’s only one."

Scully called his last game on Sunday, so he won’t be in Dodger Stadium when the Nationals and Dodgers’ NLDS matchup moves to Los Angeles next week.

He told reporters, including LA Times’ writer Bill Shaikin he would, “say goodbye at Dodger Stadium the last game with Colorado,” and then, “... say goodbye in San Francisco. And then that will be it.”

“And then I will go home,” Scully said. He called the regular season finale with the Giants in AT&T Park and said goodbye.

“I have said enough for a lifetime,” Scully said. “And for the last time, I wish you a very pleasant good afternoon.”

Baker reminisced about growing up listening to the now-88-year-old Scully one more time after the Nationals’ regular season finale on Sunday.

“I remember Vin Scully as a kid,” Baker said, “with me and my transistor radio cutting the lawn in the backyard and listening to the Dodger games and dreaming one day of being a Dodger. My favorite Dodger, I’ve told everybody, is Tommy Davis, he wore No. 12 and I dreamed of being a big leaguer and I ended up wearing his number and playing his position and my brother could emulate Vin Scully.

“We were always playing ‘hero’ in the backyard and I was the one that always won the game and then my younger brother would announce it like Vin Scully, and then when I got to know him and got to be around him on a daily basis, my brother would say something like, ‘It’s a long drive to deep left field [knock], you can tell it goodbye!’ Then I’d run around the bases... and go back and do it again.”

Baker also filmed a heartfelt goodby to Scully this past weekend: