LOS ANGELES -- Vin Scully may be stepping out of the Dodgers' broadcast booth this year, but his legacy will live on forever.The Dodgers and the City of Los Angeles on Monday dedicated Vin Scully Ave. in honor of the Hall of Fame broadcaster, who is in his 67th and
LOS ANGELES -- Vin Scully may be stepping out of the Dodgers' broadcast booth this year, but his legacy will live on forever.
The Dodgers and the City of Los Angeles on Monday dedicated Vin Scully Ave. in honor of the Hall of Fame broadcaster, who is in his 67th and final season as the voice of Dodgers baseball.
The address to Dodger Stadium is now 1000 Vin Scully Ave.
Ever humble, Scully initially resisted the honor when the idea was first mentioned to him. He eventually relented, and during Monday's ceremony in front of hundreds of Dodgers fans, Scully had nothing but thanks and kind words for a fan base that has adored his work for as long as most can remember.
"In all honestly, if you asked me this very minute, 'How do you feel about what's going on?' I would honestly say to you, 'Overwhelmed,'" Scully said. "I really am."
Dodgers broadcaster Charley Steiner, who emceed the ceremony outside Dodger Stadium, said Scully was his industry's Babe Ruth.
"This is a very big day, not only in Dodger history, but in our city's history," Steiner said. "In a city of stars, we can make a pretty compelling case that Vin is the biggest and most popular star of all. No last name required.
"How many people do you know, in any walk of life, who have held the same job for 67 years, and in most of those 67 years, has simply been the best who has ever done it?"
Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten echoed those remarks.
"Vin Scully used to talk baseball with people who had been playing baseball in 1905 -- and every year since," Kasten said. "Is there anyone on the planet who has been talking baseball with people who played in 1905 -- and yesterday? So when we say there is only one Vin Scully, we mean that quite literally."
The motion to change Elysian Park Ave. to Vin Scully Ave. passed Friday and was led by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and First District Councilman Gil Cedillo.
"All of us have this personal relationship with the Dodgers, and with Vin Scully," Cedillo said. "Vin, this is what you did. You united our city and the various communities and the various generations."
Garcetti said Scully has "been the voice and the heart and the soul of this city."
Scully thanked God and his wife, Sandra, before treating those gathered to tales of his early days growing up in Manhattan during the Great Depression.
"When I was in New York growing up, I was a street kid," he began. "We did not have big parks to play in. We played in the street, with a broom handle and a tennis ball, and we had manhole covers and they were the bases. At one time, I was known in my neighborhood as 'Two-Sewer Scully.'"
Scully delighted the crowd with a few funny remarks, too.
"When you say, '67 years doing the same job,' I also think, 'Sure, sure -- no advancement?'"
Scully mentioned that the thing he would miss the most after leaving the broadcast booth was "the roar of the crowd."
"Which really is what I'm saying today," he continued. "I don't know you and I miss you. Believe me. Each and every one of you. You have been so kind and so gentle. I'm overwhelmed. Just to hear you, your enthusiasm, the voice that comes roaring out of the stands, there's nothing like it."
Scully went on to explain that he fell in love with broadcasting as an 8-year-old in Manhattan, listening to college football over the radio and becoming entranced by the sounds coming from the crowd.
"I would listen to the college football games, and I really wouldn't know anybody playing," he said. "It might be Tennessee-Alabama, and here's a kid in a fifth-floor walk-up apartment in Manhattan. But when the crowd roared -- when someone scored a touchdown, and that roar came out of the speaker head -- it literally and figuratively was like water coming out of a showerhead, and I would get goose bumps all over my head. All over. And then I thought, 'Wow, I'd love to be there.' And then I thought, 'Maybe I'd like to broadcast.' And it all came true, thank God.
"But what happens is when you folks are at the ballpark and something happens and you let out a roar, I sit there in the booth and I don't say a word. For during that 40 seconds, whatever, I'm 8 years old again.
"And when people say, 'Gee, you still have a little bit left at your advanced age,' I always think yes, but the crowd is a big reason. I mean, how many times can you go back to when you were 8 years old? And that's what you do to me with your enthusiasm. And I thank that so very, very much to you and each and every one of you. I'm surprised you're here today."
As Scully neared his closing remarks, the crowd started chanting, "One more year! One more year!"
"I've given it a lot of consideration, and no thank you very much," Scully said. "No, I have done enough. I have said almost everything. I still have this year left, again, God willing.
"Maybe on the final day of my final broadcast, I'll somehow come up with the magic words that you deserve. As for now, I only have two magic words: Thank you."
**Austin Laymance** is a reporter for MLB.com.