We've mentioned it several times in the Game Threads now, but the giant elephant in the room is Juan Uribe...I mean it's Vin Scully's health. Last night during the broadcast, it was mentioned that Vin is feeling much better but that he'd still be out of operation likely through the weekend. Here's hoping that's good information, and that he only had a cold like the one that has been going around lately. Nervous commenters, myself included, though, have finally started asking, What if there's more to it? Heaven forfend, but it is worth considering, at least as much in it forces us to think through what will, inevitably, be the case.
Tom Hoffarth of the LA Daily News writes on the subject:
Scully, at 84, with a cold, sends a chill down everyone else's spine. Enough to where you'd think by now the Dodgers, as they are currently constituted amid an ownership change, would have a security blanket ready to wrap everyone in, either for the short or long term.There's no greater fan of Vin than I, so don't get me wrong. But this situation does call for some rational thought about what his future may hold, and some concern around what plans the Dodgers may (or may not) have in place should we no longer have Vin's services in the medium to long term. It's the unthinkable, be someone does need to be thinking about it. Watching the Vin-less broadcasts the past few nights are testament to this need!
They really don't, according to a variety of sources who spoke off the record about it. That by itself should be unsettling.
Another topic I went to bed last night thinking about and woke up this morning irked about is the tendency of local media to be so negative about early Dodger Stadium attendance numbers. Each night, the beat writers sarcastically, almost gleefully, report the official announced attendance, and some even Tweet pictures that all-knowingly show that the stands aren't full.
Folks, back off! It's very early in the season. We haven't even had a weekend home stand yet. And the weather has been, for Los Angeles at least, crummy. It's been cold (again, for LA), rainy, windy, and generally not very baseball friendly. This is a big factor. People will come, Ray, as Terence Mann intoned. Give it time. But mainly, to you beat writers, what is the value you get in unfairly and without full context trying to tear things down rather than build them up? Is this the new Gen X sarcasto-journalism?
The LA Times itself can't seem to resist taking swipes about the season. Check some of these recent headlines:
A 50th anniversary at Dodger Stadium, with a sober undertone
Dodgers win again, but the crowd dwindles
Dodgers off to a nice start, but don't get too excited
To a casual fan, or to a family looking for something to do on a Sunday afternoon, reading these headlines might well send them off to somewhere other than Chavez Ravine. Is that the Times' intent?
Maybe it's just hard for them to get out of "Dodgers under McCourt are failing and we smell blood" mode. I for one hope that local writers and publications will take more joy from a great 6-1 start and the promise of a great season, new ownership, renewed interest, and a pennant run with some of the best players in the game and some of the most exciting young players to come up in a long time.