Curt Smith’s book on Scully due end of next month


It’s already got a listing on (linked here), this 272-page book on the life and times of the Dodgers’ Vin Scully, written by noted baseball broadcast historian Curt Smith.

Smith told us back in Feburary, 2008 (linked here) that the project was on hold, because of Scully’s misgivings about it, and Smith’s desire to focus more attention on the presidental race. Apparently, Scully’s reluctance to having it done won’t stop Smith.

In November, 2007, Smith also told us: “I feel strongly that any public figure such as Scully deserves a biography, but I don’t wish to be presumptive. It’s something I’ve had in mind for at least the last 10 years.” Others picked up on that story (linked here).

Today, on the media blog Fang’s Bite, a Q-and-A with Smith produced the following information (linked here) about Smith’s project:

Q: You’ve written a biography of Vin Scully that will be published in May. Do you see any similarities in style between Vin and Harry (Kalas)?
CS: Vin is baseball’s gold standard: by any reckoning, radio/TV’s Roy Hobbs. He links subtlety, telling fact, love of history, standing in the player’s shoes, and poetry: “It was so hot today the moon got sun-burned.” Harry’s prose was more minimalist: his voice resonant, transcendent, soothing, engaging. I still remember July 2002. Philly fanatics filled a field in Cooperstown. “This is the ultimate honor,” Harry said of entering the Hall of Fame. Tearing, he imagined Ashburn’s twist: “Hard to believe, Harry!” Kalas ended with a poem: “Philadelphia fans, I love you!” From the distance a voice yelled, “and we love you, too, Harry!” The Delaware Valley always will.

Q: What can we expect in your upcoming Vin Scully biography?
CS: This is the first biography of baseball’s greatest Voice, describing Vin’s voyage from Brooklyn via Los Angeles to NBC TV, CBS Radio, and the Hall of Fame. “Pull Up A Chair: The Vin Scully Story” shows Vin born in the Bronx, attending Fordham, joining Red Barber at Ebbets Field, calling Brooklyn’s sole world title, and moving to California, where he became the Dodgers’ connecting tissue between the public and its game. Later, he became the surpassing network personality of baseball on the air. In a sense, his history is baseball’s post-World War II history: a nonpareil announcer, and career.

Q: In your research on Vin’s biography, is there one story or event in his life that stood out?
CS: If silence is golden, Vin long ago became a vein, pausing, letting the crowd hold sway, upon Hank Aaron’s 715th homer, Bill Buckner’s 1986 error, and 1988’s Kirk Gibson, improbably doing deep. Also, his use of language wows, likening a poor fielder to the Ancient Mariner: “He stoppeth one in three”; terming pitching “like a tailor: a little off here, a little off there, and you’re done.” In a sentence he can segue from Jimmy Durante to John Donne.

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