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Phil Rizzuto Dies


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No Phil Rizzuto tribute will be complete without

Paridise by the Dashboard Light

Phil's story behind this was funny, apparently he did not know what the song was about, but when it came out he had to answer to his Priest and his Wife.

Even as a Mets fan I loved Phil, he made watching Yankee games fun especially when he forgot about the game and was going on about Canolis. He was a true classic.

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I grew up listening to Scooter all through the '60s. (Unfortunately, I never got to see him play.) Phil knew better than anyone that baseball was meant to be fun. Even though he hadn't called a game in nearly 10 years, somehow something is missing on Yankee broadcasts without him.

I'm watching the Yankees game right now, and it's the 7th inning -- just about the time Scooter would be leaving the booth to head across the George Washington Bridge back to New Jersey. I guess Scooter is heading across a very different bridge just about now.

My condolences to Cora and all of the Rizzuto children, to all of Phil's friends and colleagues, to the New York Yankees, and to baseball fans everywhere.

Holy cow!

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I had the honor of meeting Mr. Rizzuto once, and in kind of a strange way.

I was 11 years old (it was 1967) and missed summer camp (Camp of the Cross Lutheran Bible Camp -- I told you I'm very Lutheran) because of the flu. My dad made up for that by taking me to a Twins series against the Yankees at old Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, Minn. We flew from Bismarck, N.D., on my first plane ride, then went to the Thunderbird hotel -- just next to Metopolitan Stadium. We couldn't get a room at the Thunderbird, but started walking to the stadium.

Just into the parking lot, my dad started talking with a guy. He and this guy were talking baseball -- this stranger didn't act like a stranger, as he was very friendly. Then my dad told me who it is -- Phil Rizzuto. I shook hands with him and said, "Hello, Mr. Rizzuto." He smiled and said, "Call me Phil." The three of us had a pleasant conversation the rest of the way to the old Met.

Rest in peace, Mr. Rizzuto ... I mean Phil.

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I remember going to the first game Dave Winfield played at Yankee Stadium after being traded to the Angels.

The game was televised on Channel 11 where Scooter was one of the announcers. I went by the broadcast booth door on the concourse and asked the guard if he signed. The guard told me he was working but to come back in the 4th which I did and handed the guard my yearbook for Rizzuto to sign. Much to my surprise he brought the book back to me and talked to me for a few minutes about baseball and as the poster above stated I called him Mr. Rizzuto and he said "Call me Phil." What a guy.

Although he'd been off the air since 1996 somehow, today there are a lot fewer birthdays, anniversaries and Cora stories that are being mentioned during Yankee telecasts.

RIP Scooter.

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