Wednesday, February 02, 2011

The Tao of Vin Scully

(One of the things I didn't get to see while in Hollywood...perhaps next time!)
Tom Hoffarth, via his blog, asked several play-by-play voices the following question:
As a professional play-by-play man, what can you learn about your craft simply by listening to Vin Scully today?
He got answers (so far) from...

Nick Nickson (LA Kings radio voice)
Bob Miller (Kings TV)
Charlie Steiner (Dodgers radio)
Victor Rojas (Angels)
Matt Vasgerian (MLB Network - I don't get this one, personally, but I've never been a fan)
Ross Porter (former Dodgers radio and TV)
Ken Levine (Mariners and others)
Jim Nantz (mmm...Hello, friends)

If anyone asked me, the first thing I'd say is that Vin Scully himself has always said that he never listens to other broadcasters.  Now I don't entirely subscribe to that, but one of the most important things that Scully said Red Barber taught him was to "be yourself."

I couldn't agree more.  I'm definitely influenced by Scully, Barber, and Mel Allen, but also others who I listened to over the years.  Frank Messer, Dick Enberg, Ernie Harwell, even both Jack and Joe Buck (humor is an important part of entertaining in this era).  Plus many others.  Preperation is crucial, but so is the gift of storytelling, and attention to detail and accuracy.  All are important.

This series of articles is interesting, even if it might be a little LA-centric.  It's a must-read for those interested in Scully, but also those wanting to call games.

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