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Some perspective on Vin Scully and play by play in my not so humble, but I believe informed opinion

January 12, 2016

My opinion of Vin Scully as a broadcaster is essentially the same as the consensus one.

He is an all-time great as good as any, likely better in setting the scene and for the most part in game preparation (even in this he has either been over rated for a long time or at 80 years old plus, is slipping as I watched a game that included two heroes of the 2014 title winning S.F. Giants and Scully, who digs up facts that even the king of tangents (me) find beyond incidental, did not cite their heroics).

Wow I knocked a man more untouchable and inherently far better, albeit in an infinitely less important field of endeavor, than his buddy, Ronald Reagan, yet again.

More telling to me, I dare criticize a man I defended beyond rational thought in younger days while discussing and comparing announcers.

Then and now it is ultimately an opinion.

I cringed at the criticism heaped on Scully, by those I felt were uninformed and still believe/know it was to get my “goat” as a Scully fan.

What I can offer with reasonable objectivity and as one whom (who?) though will never announce on air, have been told by many including most that truly dislike me, that I have professional ability as a broadcaster.

Whether that is true, this is. Hearing a well done broadcast, especially one on the radio, (in that situation the broadcaster is the listener’s eyes), is most beautiful music to me.

Maybe it is crazy, but hearing greats like Mel Allen, Joe Tait or Harry Kalas, to name three of the best ever at following the play in an exciting clear cut manner, is one of my favorite things.

It is in my blood and I know what is good and what is great!

For my money Scully and his storytelling is more than good.

Once announcing Don Drysdale’s record tying 5th shutout in 1968, his call of Jack Hiatt’s “high pop fly, he’s 60 feet from the record Parker’s (Wes) GOT IT” is better than the greatest meal.

Yet and I think I heard him explain why once between games of a Mets/Dodgers doubleheader (remember those!), Scully too often took the “safe, wait and see” approach to broadcasting.

Apparently he had called a ball hit by Frank Howard a home run or not, too soon, and was wrong concerning the result.

In my not so humble opinion, better that and an occasional mistake, even a big one, than the “too long wait” to make a call.

Clearly again at least in my not so humble, but dare say informed opinion,  Al Michaels, also once great (I have played or “linked” his greatest call, (no not that contrived nonsense during Olympic hockey, Michaels though a hockey fan is not a hockey broadcaster as he is far more familiar with the ice for his scotch than the kind in a rink, but the one when Johnny Bench hit the tying home run in the decisive 5th game of the 1972 NLCS), does far too often.

Give me “rat tat tat”, give me “ON ThE PLAY.”

Famed poet, Jack Kerouac waxed poetic about one of the greatest broadcasters, Marty Glickman doing so. That and not the “wait and see” of a still great like Scully and accomplished veteran such as Michaels, is what is great to me.

Jack-Hiatt

It a post that cites and gives perhaps somewhat out of context opinions about such broadcasting greats as Vin Scully and Marty Glickman.

Additionally, 40th United States president, Ronald Reagan, Don Drysdale and Jack Kerouac are also cited.

So of course it is Jack E. Hiatt, known I believe only as Jack Hiatt, who is pictured above. Why? because (no not an Abbott and Costello classic) one could follow singer Sheryl Crow’s mantra and “soak up the sun” (if there was the “soakable” variety) “and LIGHTEN UP.”

Here’s to all of them, as with all of us, figures/performers on the stage, that is life.

Sheryl Crow – Soak Up The Sun

Click above to view Sheryl Crow’s big hit as I put my venom away and “lighten up.”

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