As the Dodgers and Time Warner Cable invoked the name of Vin Scully in lobbying DirecTV to carry SportsNet LA, the Hall of Fame broadcaster said Wednesday he was not entirely comfortable "to have my name tossed into a negotiation.”
Said Scully: “I’m pretty shy with that kind of stuff.”
The beloved Scully, 88, is entering his 67th and final season as voice of the Dodgers. A TWC spokesman said Tuesday that the company had cut its asking price for the Dodgers-owned channel "especially because of the historic nature of this year, with it being Vin Scully’s final season.”
Said Scully: “It’s really kind of embarrassing for me. If it will serve in any possible way to get the fans to see more games, that is the thing I would be rooting for.”
Scully is famously averse to controversy. However, on Wednesday, the president of the Dodgers, the commissioner of Major League Baseball and the mayor of Los Angeles all invoked Scully’s name in urging DirecTV and other providers to accept the TWC deal.
“It’s a humbling feeling that they would even try because of me,” Scully said.
Dodgers President Stan Kasten saluted the TWC offer to lower the cost of the Dodgers’ channel. “We think it’s a wonderful gesture from Time Warner Cable, particularly out of respect for Vin Scully,” Kasten said. “It’s a big win for the fans and, frankly, a big win for the cable and satellite providers. There could be no better way to honor Vin in his final year than for them to quickly accept this offer and get the games on TV.”
Commissioner Rob Manfred issued this statement: “The distribution dispute involving DirecTV, AT&T, COX and Verizon has gone on too long. The Dodgers’ massive fan base deserves to be able to watch Dodger games regardless of their choice of provider. The situation is particularly acute given that this is Hall of Fame broadcaster Vin Scully’s final season. Time Warner has made a significant economic move that I hope will be accepted by the providers.”
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti issued this statement: “Dodger fans across L.A. deserve to watch our team play — not just subscribers to one cable system, but everyone who bleeds Dodger blue. Over the last few years, I have met with carriers and repeatedly called on them to end the unfortunate stalemate that has prevented Angelenos from seeing their beloved team. I am hopeful that we are close to breaking the deadlock and finally doing the right thing for Dodger fans. If nothing else, let’s do it for Vin Scully.” Scully makes his 2016 debut on Friday, when the Dodgers play an exhibition game against the San Francisco Giants.
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