Leading Off

Leading Off: For Vin Scully, it’ll be 66 years and counting

“Vinsanity” didn’t start with Jeremy Lin, or with Vince Carter. Not by a long shot.

Vin Scully is the very definition of “Vinsanity,” a phenomenon, a broadcasting marvel who defies aging. He also despises cliches, let’s the action speak for itself and remains unfailingly objective on the air.

Scully this week announced that he will return as the Dodgers’ golden voice next season, his 66th summer with the club. Even Giants fans would be stubborn not to tip their cap at the class and pedigree of Scully, who is 86 going on 50.

Scully called Don Larsen’s perfect game in 1956, each of Sandy Koufax’s four no-hitters (and 19 in all), Hank Aaron’s 715th home run in 1974. For national television, he called the Mookie Wilson grounder that “gets through Buckner!” in the 1986 World Series and Kirk Gibson’s homer off Dennis Eckersley in the 1988 World Series – “high fly ball into right field … she is … gone!”

Scully was also a lead NFL voice on network television, calling a soaring grab in the 49ers’ NFC Championship Game triumph over Dallas in 1982: “Montana, looking, looking, throwing in the end zone … Clark caught it! Dwight Clark!”

How beloved is this guy? The voice of the Dodgers since 1950 has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He placed third in a fan vote by the Los Angeles Times in listing the top 20 sports figures in city history, behind Koufax and Magic Johnson (and ahead of John Wooden, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West and Kobe Bryant). A Dodger fan noted on Twitter through his @LA_thinkblue account: “Vin Scully is older than sliced bread. Therefore, sliced bread is the best thing since Vin Scully.”

Nailed it.

–Joe Davidson


Today’s poll

Who is the greatest sports announcer?

• Marv Albert

• Dick Enberg

• Chick Hearn

• Keith Jackson

• Bill King

• Al Michaels

• Vin Scully

To vote, go to sacbee.com/sports

Thursday’s results

What is the future of the Oakland Raiders?

• New stadium in Oakland: 34%

• Relocate to Los Angeles, elsewhere: 66%

Total votes: 122