Dodgers’ sale talk silences Scully

GOOD MORNING: What about Vin Scully the voice and the heart of the Dodgers? He did not attend Peter O’Malley’s press conference Monday announcing the Dodgers are for sale. He told me, “I did the cowardly thing: I went out to play golf all day in that wind so I wouldn’t be near a phone.” Scully had known of the planned announcement; he spent Sunday with Peter O’Malley talking about it. They have been very close friends for years. “I think of him as a brother,” said Vin. The announcement, he said, “is painful” to Scully. “I feel sad for the city, I fell sorry for baseball. I feel sorry for myself.” This spring will be Scully’s 48th season with the Dodgers. Although he was hired by Branch Rickey, Walter O’Malley came in the next year. “I truly love the family,” said Scully, “and that’s why I know if that’s the way he wants it to be, that is the way it should be.” Despite his sentiments about the Dodgers being sold, Scully admits about the decision to sell, “It didn’t surprise me. It doesn’t happen overnight. He (O’Malley) can’t continue with the way salaries are; it affects the team.” How much does he think the Dodgers will sell for? “I don’t know what it’s worth.” What about Scully’s future? He has no contract with the Dodgers to broadcast the games. “We just say, ‘Will it (the salary) be all right?’ And agree on it.” Will Scully continue to broadcast the games? “If the new owners want me, I’d stay. I don’t take it for granted. But I’d just as soon keep working. I’d be the last person on earth to sit there and watch the sun set.” When Scully left O’Malley Sunday, he said, “I had an empty feeling. I really feel empty.” We had dinner with the Scullys, Merv Griffin and friends a couple of weeks ago and. of course talked baseball. Vin talked about traveling with the team, talking to the players, to the fans; on the road he would walk to the stadium in cities like his favorite Cincy. There was love in his voice for the game, for the Dodgers. The Dodgers would feel empty without Vin Scully. L.A. would feel empty without Vin Scully. Me, too.

MICHAEL OVITZ, RON MEYER, Bill Haber, Rowland Perkins and Mike Rosenfeld the five who founded CAA reunioned Jan. 3 for the farewell to Phil Weltman, their “godfather” who was laid to rest at Hillside. Ovitz flew in from Switzerland and was one of the pallbearers. Haber winged in from Conn. and his Save the Children h.q.; Rosenfeld was in from Napa. A lunch wake followed, hosted by Meyer at Chasen’s. On hand were Martin Baum and Fred Specktor(who segued from William Morris with the quintet to form CAA), and Barry Diller, Robert Shapiro, George Shapiro and Howard West (who had been counselled by Weltman as they went on to more successes). Also Wm. Morris’ Fred Westheimer, Irv Schecter, Sylvia Hirsch, Ruth Englehardt, and Mike Rosenfeld Jr. Weltman’s longtime clients Tim Conway ( 35 years) and Dean Jones told humorous stories about Weltman; Meyer spoke lovingly of their mentor, reminding the words inscribed on the bust of Weltman in the CAA office: “Phil Weltman who taught us the meaning of integrity and self-respect.” Jerry Cutler, onetime personal manager who became a rabbi, officiated. Coincidentally, Chasen’s was the site 37 years ago where Weltman married wife Rusty, who was on hand to hear the final words of praise. The lunch was catered by Chasen’s alumnus Arli, who now has his own (successful) catering biz, and was served by fellow Chasen’s alumni Ronnie Clint, Claude Krihning and Vicki Aruna Monday, in N.Y. Catherine Scorsese, mother of Martin S., died of complications from Alzheimer’s. The delightful Catherine was well known to the biz , having appeared in 16 of his movies, as well as one for Francis Coppola and one for Spike Lee. Marty was at his mother’s side when she died at NYU hospital. He’d returned from Morocco, where he completed shooting Disney’s “Kundun.” They were happy Catherine’s “The Scorsese Family Cookbook” (Random House) had just hit the stalls. Marty was very proud she had done it. He and fellow producer Barbara DeFina are readying the Disney pic for Fall. A second unit will lense further mountain shots for the Dalai Lama epic story. Scorsese and DeFina are proud Disney “backed us up” in the face of China’s recent threatening statements.

FAMILY NEWS OVER the holidays: Kenny Rogers announced his engagement to Wanda Miller from the stage of the Aladdin in Vegas, where he appeared New Year’s Eve. They won’t wed until Spring ’98. … Tracy Barone, president of Jon Peters Ent., and husband Paul Michael Glaser, who wed in Santa Fe, honeymooned at Jumby Bay in Antigua. … “Young and Restless” star Lauralee Bell rang in the New Year receiving a marriage proposal from photog Scott Martin. … Carl and Estelle Reiner celebrated their 53rd wedding anni. … BevHills hairdresser (at Amato’s) Nicole Kramer (daughter of praiser David K.) married record exec Randy Alpert Dec. 22 at the Valley’s Bistro Garden. … Clint Eastwood, wife Dina and infant daughter Morgan holiday’d at Sun Valley, where papa brought the baby, in her bassinet, to the Athletic Club while he worked out. … On holiday in Hawaii, Deborah and Jeff Wald and Christine Peters and Jack Scalia hosted the New Year’s Eve party at the Kahala, where the Hollywood contingent included the Jeff Katzenbergs, Mark Cantons, Garry Shandling, Garry Marshalls, Penny Marshall, Casey Wasserman and Laura Ziffren.

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