LOS ANGELES - Jaime Jarrín and I have met many times professionally over the years. He’s easy to talk to, elegant in his manner of speech, which still carries a melodic Spanish accent.
But when you’re in the presence of this larger-than-life Los Angeles Dodgers announcer, you are mostly struck by his deep voice and gentle way. That is except when he’s calling a baseball game. He’s Jaime Jarrín at the mic, enthusiastic and poetic.
Next year will be his 64th season with the Boys in Blue. The man who came to this country at the age of 19 from his native Ecuador had to first learn about baseball.
Jaime knew radio, but not the game of baseball. He learned the game, then he learned how to describe to listeners what they could not see. He spoke to me Tuesday at his home, where in just a couple of hours, he would step up to the mic at Dodger Stadium to announce that he was retiring from the broadcast booth after the 2022 Dodger baseball season.
The man with the signature line.... " Se va, se va, se va! " had decided it was time to make a change.
Some changes have been challenging for 85-year-old Jarrín. There was the deadly pandemic that brought baseball and the world to a screeching halt, games called in empty studios, with strict covid protocols in place.
Below is the full one-on-one interview between our Laura Diaz and Dodgers' Jaime Jarrín:
But the hardest change would be the staggering personal loss of Jaime’s beloved wife Blanca. She died suddenly in 2019. We have spoken as friends of his late wife’s memory. But Tuesday was the first time we spoke on camera of her.
The Jarríns were married for 65 years. He was emotional as he recalled his wife, his princess.
"She was beside me. She urged me to be creative., to be honest, to be myself," Jarrín said.
Jarrín said he was 100% at peace with his decision to step away from the broadcasting booth next year. He knows it will be emotional. He loves the game of baseball and is deeply grateful to the Dodgers organization and his legion of fans. He said his career had exceeded his wildest dreams. I have been with Jaime when he walked through the stadium. The man is a bonafide star.
But Jaime knew it was time. Time to spend more time with his kids and grandkids, time to travel in the U.S. and abroad. But for now, we have a bit more time; the honor of this legend continuing to be soundtrack of our lives en Espanol.
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