No alarms and no surprises, please.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Quick Hits - RIP Scooter Rizzuto edition.

Goodbye, Phil Rizzuto. You will be missed. In fact, let me say I'm already missing you. You were integral to the infancy of my Yankee fan tenure. I loved listening to you. Please let me recount some Rizzuto tidbits.

- When I first started watching the Yanks, Phil was no longer a great announcer. However you were a Yankee institution. But, back in the day, he was pretty darn good and a lot of fun to listen to. Here you are calling Roger Maris's 61st home run.
- You were also enough of an institution that Meat Loaf famously used you as the announcer in Paradise by the Dashboard Light. I always loved hearing how he didn't realize exactly what the song was about. He was just brought in to record a play by play. He did and only later found out how it was used in the song. His reaction? "That Huckleberry!"
- I even miss the Money Store.
- I'll always remember how Phil and many other Major League Players gave up several years of their careers to serve in the military during WWII. Can you imagine Barry Bonds doing such a thing? Hell, you can't even get Kobe to do a slam-dunk contest.
- One time, when my brother and I were watching a Yankee game, Scooter out of nowhere said, "I smell onions." He then became a bit obsessed with where the smell was coming from. He wouldn't drop it. We thought it was hysterical. From then on, whenever the subject of Rizzuto came up, one of us would say, "I smell onions." In fact, here's the email my brother sent me today:

Scooter has gone to the big Yankee Stadium in the sky.

*hangs head*

"Seaver, do you smell onions? I smell onions!"

- Scooter was also a pretty darn good player. He played a very good shortstop even with the gloves like these.

and in 1950, he batted .324, had an OBP of .418 and even improbably won an MVP. Coincidentally, Phil had 112 runs created that season which nearly matched even the magical 1987 season of Jack Clark (inside joke). He'd later get into the Hall of Fame via the "veterans committee" everyone loved Scooter.

Goodbye Scooter. The Yankee fan experience is worse without you. RIP.