Tommy Lasorda remembers the people in and around baseball
The death of Tommy Lasorda sparked a reaction from the baseball world, which one would expect for someone so involved in the sport for over seven decades.
The MLB network worked a seven-minute tribute video to Lasorda it is worth your time.
Dodgers MLB Network manager Dave Roberts recalled a story he played with the Dodgers (2002-04), during batting practice in spring training at Vero Beach. Lasorda was between 75 and 77 years old at the time.
“After doing about 45 minutes, an hour of extra fieldwork, here’s Tommy in his cart. He goes out, takes off his jacket and wants to throw BP away ”, Roberts said. “He ended up telling me I had to hit curved balls, so this guy threw another 45 minutes of BP, and I was exhausted. I couldn’t break anything.
“He was there [at the World Series] in Texas … It’s one of my proudest moments, that we were able to make one of his dreams come true. “@Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts talks about his friendship with Tommy Lasorda. pic.twitter.com/RWk3WWUOSz
– MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) January 8, 2021
Lasorda was a special advisor to Dodgers owner Mark Walter for the past 14 years, and although he was no longer involved in the day-to-day operations of the team, he was still a constant presence around the team, to spring training. , at Dodger Stadium, and even on the road.
Several current and former Dodgers players have shared their memories of Lasorda.
Tommy Lasorda, this wonderful man, Hall of Famer in baseball and in life, that’s him, so much joy. So much love he had for baseball, for the @Dodgers . Winning, loving this game, living and playing with joy was his message to us. Rest in peace at Blue Heaven, sir and thank you. pic.twitter.com/45iXnAurYU
– Kenley Jansen (@ kenleyjansen74) January 8, 2021
Rest in peace Tommy. One of the most passionate and entertaining people I have known in my life. Hard, hard day.
– Walker Buehler (@buehlersdayoff) January 8, 2021
RIP Tommy !! I will never forget all the great conversations, memories, stories! In recent years, I’ve been looking forward to 18 hours before every home game. Being able to talk to you for 5 to 10 minutes has always been my day! We will all miss you Tommy! pic.twitter.com/j3VuhyNoFZ
– Enrique Hernández (@kikehndez) January 8, 2021
Prayers for the Lasorda family. I had the honor of knowing Tommy during my stay in Los Angeles. No one I’ve ever met has matched Tommy’s love for baseball and I don’t think they ever will. I’m so thankful that I got to know him and spent the time with him that I did.
– Alex Wood (@ Awood45) January 8, 2021
Tommy watched me throw at the 2012 rookie ball, Ogden, UT. Afterwards, he told me that I was going to be a great player. I immediately called my father to tell him about it. It’ll fail to tell Tommy how much it meant to me. RIP to a baseball legend
– Ross Stripling (@RossStripling) January 8, 2021
Lucky to have had a great time with Tommy over the past 7 years. Her passion for the Dodgers was incredible and she will live on. I will miss giving myself before a start, and tweeting during a backyard outing in spring training! RIP to a Dodger Legend https://t.co/xF8NOtF0B2
– Brock Stewart (@Brock_A_Stewart) January 8, 2021
Words cannot express my feelings. A friend and mentor for 52 years is no longer with us. Tommy, no one will ever fill the void you left. Thank you for everything. TEAR
– Bobby Valentine (@BobbyValentine) January 8, 2021
I had the honor of meeting Tommy Lasorda the day I signed with the Dodgers on June 20, 2008 and his words of wisdom have been with me throughout my baseball career … Baseball has lost a legend! pic.twitter.com/9CXNj1l9ym
– Matt Magill (@magillmlb) January 8, 2021
I have been blessed in this life to have had two fathers. My biological dad and my baseball dad. He tracked me down, signed me up, and taught me how to play baseball. RIP Tommy Lasorda and your wife Jo and your family
– Tommy Hutton (@ THUT14) January 8, 2021
Tommy, you will always be loved and remembered. I will miss your stories, your jokes and your speeches forever. Never have I left a conversation with you without feeling better about myself or with a big smile on my face. #RIPTommy #GOAT pic.twitter.com/BXQhyK0nny
– Adrian González (@Adrian_ElTitan) January 8, 2021
Matt Kemp on his Instagram story said of Lasorda, “Too many memories with this guy. We love you and we will miss you.
Josh Rawitch, now senior vice president of the Diamondbacks’ communications department, has worked with the Dodgers for years.
I grew up loving this man from a distance and have been fortunate enough to spend many years together as friends. He is perhaps the best storyteller I have ever met and always made us laugh. What an incredible life. May he rest in peace with the “Big Dodger in the Sky” of whom he has spoken so often. pic.twitter.com/55Q04JYNdd
– Josh Rawitch (@joshrawitch) January 8, 2021
It’s been a tough week for Vin Scully, who has also lost his wife Sandi.
I would like to express my gratitude for all your kind messages regarding my beloved Sandi. And with the loss of my dear friend Tommy, it was a lot to take.
– Vin Scully (@TheVinScully) January 8, 2021
Hall of Fame announcer Jaime Jarrín, who called the Dodgers games for 62 years, shared his thoughts on Lasorda with Bill Plunkett.
Jaime recalled many nights after a difficult loss on the road, Tommy knocking on his door at 1 or 2 in the morning and asking him to go for a walk. It was Tommy’s way of turning the page on a tough loss – and it sometimes took him and Jaime to tough quarters.
– Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) January 8, 2021
To date, I have had 62 seasons of great times and fond memories, but the memories I have where Tommy was present are some of the most treasured. I will miss my dear friend. pic.twitter.com/9bWVHiIUaT
– Jaime Jarrín (@JaimeJarrin) January 8, 2021
A number of journalists also shared their stories from Lasorda.
A lot of them are discussion threads so click for the full story. Joël Sherman’s thread start here, but this tweet had the line that made me laugh the most.
3 / he was doing for the team and America. I said, it’s like Bela Karolyi doesn’t get a medal when one of her gymnasts wins. Tommy roared, “Joel, I don’t care (beep) about Bela Lugosi.” Like an idiot, I correct Tommy, Karolyi not Lugosi. At this point, Tommy begins
– Joël Sherman (@ Joelsherman1) January 8, 2021
RIP Tom Lasorda. A larger-than-life character, even when his diet was working. Everything they said about him, good or bad, was true. Warts and everything, he had a knack for making people happy and bringing out the best in them. 1/5
– Kevin Modesti (@KevinModesti) January 8, 2021
Another personal experience from Tommy Lasorda: Rangers in LA the same day my Brooklyn born dad was sent home after a second heart operation (1 /
– Evan Grant (@Evan_P_Grant) January 8, 2021
I never grew old hearing Tommy Lasorda tell the Buster Maynard story. Lasorda was snubbed by Maynard, a major league player, as he tried to get an autograph as a child. In 1949, Lasorda faced Maynard in a minor league match. Hit him with a throw. He was so proud to tell this story.
– Doug Padilla (@DougPadilla) January 8, 2021
Spring practice 1978. My father had me interview Lasorda for WNBC-TV. Tommy did – and of course he was awesome – but he insisted that I take my Arkansas Razorbacks football shirt off and wear it instead. Everyone has a Tommy story. pic.twitter.com/hJLi24myvn
– Jeremy Schaap (@JeremySchaap) January 8, 2021
During the winter of 94-95, I had lunch with Tommy Lasorda at his brother’s restaurant in Exton. He was appalled at my spaghetti rotation technique, reached over the table and showed me how. Excellent memory for a child raised on corned beef and cabbage. RIP, Tommy
– Jim Salisbury (@JSalisburyNBCS) January 8, 2021
Boy my heart hurts from losing @Dodgers great Tommy Lasorda. For many, Tommy was a true original. And without a doubt, he was an icon of Los Angeles. But to Italian Americans, it was as familiar as the smell of mom’s red sauce simmering on the stove every Sunday.
– Vincent Bonsignore (@VinnyBonsignore) January 8, 2021
Here are others.
The Dodgers Hall of Fame director and LA icon, and my great friend Tommy Lasorda passed away late last night. For the past 8 years, I have sat next to Tommy at every Dodgers game and he has taught me invaluable lessons in baseball strategy and history. pic.twitter.com/6RxmoQ7Che
– Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 8, 2021
RIP Tommy Lasorda! One of the biggest icons in the game. I really enjoyed our time together. You always told me I couldn’t hit your curve ball. Your love for the game was second to none! We will always miss you big one! #MrDodger
– Frank Thomas (@ TheBigHurt_35) January 8, 2021
Statement by Larry Bowa to @ 6abc on the death of Tommy Lasorda
“Tommy was one of the greatest ambassadors of our sport. Not only was he an icon in our industry, but he had a great career as manager of the LA Dodgers … he was a great person. My prayers go out to his family. https://t.co/n8JyxDKs3K pic.twitter.com/DmJLoHkVmS
– Jeff Skversky 6abc (@JeffSkversky) January 8, 2021
Growing up in Los Angeles during the Lasorda days, this was one of the most special moments I have ever photographed, Tommy Lasorda crying during the national anthem after leading the team to a gold medal at the 2000 Olympics. RIP Tommy. https://t.co/Qu0UWsv4P2 pic.twitter.com/qLdqZJ7eZa
– KC Alfred (@KCAfredPhoto) January 8, 2021
Tommy Lasorda was the face of the franchise and the soul of this city.
I loved watching him as a kid taking our boys in blue to two World Series championships and spending time with him as an adult, sitting with him in his office or visiting him behind the plate. pic.twitter.com/jGxofqp8i1
– MayorOfLA (@MayorOfLA) January 8, 2021
Tommy Lasorda has built a legacy as one of baseball’s great managers and ambassadors for seven decades in Brooklyn and Los Angeles. We extend our condolences to his family, friends and the many Dodgers fans who have connected with him through the generations.
– MLBPA Communications (@MLBPA_News) January 8, 2021