Vin Scully returning to Dodgers, says 2016 likely his final season
LOS ANGELES (CNS) - One day after announcing that he would return to call Los Angeles Dodgers games in 2016, legendary broadcaster Vin Scully said Saturday that next season would most likely be his last.
"I would say realistically, and I don't want any headlines, but I would say next year would be the last one,'' Scully told reporters at Dodger Stadium this afternoon before the team's game against the Chicago Cubs. "I mean, how much longer can you go on fooling people? So yeah, I would be saying, "Dear God, if you give me next year, I will hang it up.'''
Scully touched on his place among the game's off-field legends during his press conference Saturday.
"I saw Red Barber leave the Dodgers. I saw Russ Hodges leave the Giants. I saw Harry Caray leave the Cubs. I saw Jack Buck leave the Cardinals,'' he said, according to the Dodgers' Website. "And you know what? Not one of those teams missed a game. They kept on playing, and the fans kept on going.''
The news will certainly temper the relief baseball fans felt Friday night after the dramatic mid-game announcement that Scully would return for his unprecedented 67th season with the team.
"I talked it over with my wife, Sandi, and my family and we've decided to do it again in 2016,'' the 87-year-old Scully said in a statement released by the team on Friday. "There's no place like home and Dodger Stadium and we look forward to being a part of it with all of our friends.''
The announcement was made on a video played on Dodger Stadium's Dodger Vision board before the start of the bottom of the second inning of Friday's 4-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs.
The video began with Magic Johnson, the Basketball Hall of Fame member who is a part-owner of the Dodgers, promising ``big breaking news'' with "Dodger correspondent'' Jimmy Kimmel sharing the details.
Scully acknowledged the crowd from his broadcast booth in the press box that is named for him as the 1964 song first recorded by Martha and the Vandellas "Dancing in the Street'' played in the background.
The announcement that Scully would be returning came nearly a month later in the season than last year, when it was made on July 29 and coincided with a giveaway of microphones to fans to mark Scully's 65th year with the franchise.
In each of the previous four seasons, the announcement that Scully would be returning came between Aug. 22 and Aug. 26.
Scully's many honors include being selected by the American Sportscasters Association as the greatest sportscaster of the 20th century and the Ford C. Frick Award, presented annually by the Baseball Hall of Fame to a broadcaster for "major contributions to baseball.''
Either on the team or NBC broadcasts, Scully has called such memorable moments by the Dodgers -- or their opponents -- as Kirk Gibson's pinch-hit home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 1 of the 1988 World Series, Sandy Koufax's perfect game in 1965, New York Yankee pitcher Don Larsen's perfect game against the Dodgers in the 1956 World Series and Hank Aaron's record-setting 715th home run.
Scully started calling Dodgers games in 1950, when the franchise was located in Brooklyn.