Tommy Lasorda - Starts A Half-century With The Dodgers
Starts a Half-Century with the Dodgers
Lasorda's pitching record attracted the attention of scouts for the Brooklyn Dodgers, and he was signed to that organization's Montreal team—the Dodgers' top farm team. He played for the Dodgers from 1950 to 1955, and again from 1958 to 1960. During his tenure with the Dodgers' Montreal team, he helped the team win five International League championships.
Lasorda played briefly for the major leagues as a pitcher, playing a total of only 26 games—for the Dodgers in 1954 and 1956, and for the Kansas City Athletics in 1956. "I always wanted to be a major leaguer," Lasorda later told Woodburn. "When I was growing up all I ever wanted to do was be a major league baseball player. That was the goal of my life. And by golly I reached that goal. I was in the major leagues as a player.
Not very long, not very successful, but I reached the level of the top."
In 1961, Lasorda retired from playing baseball, and became a talent scout for the Dodgers. It was during this time that he resolved to become a major league manager. "I was at the 1963 World Series between the Dodgers and the Yankees," he later told the St. Petersburg Times, "and I was sitting with the scouts up behind home plate. I was up so high I could give the guy in the blimp a high-five. And I said to my wife, 'You want to know something, Jo. One day I'm going to be in that dugout managing the Dodgers to a World Series.'"