For many Dodger fans, Tommy Lasorda has been a name and face that has become synonymous with the franchise. His time with the Los Angeles Dodgers seem be endless as his ties to the organization date back to when the franchise was still located in Brooklyn.
Lasorda made his Major League debut August 1954 as a pitcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers and was a member of the team that won the 1955 World Series. After bouncing around with other teams for a couple years, Lasorda spent his some time in the Dodgers’ Minor League system before being released in 1960.
The following year, Lasorda began his post-playing career serving as a Dodger scout before he found himself managing a couple of their Minor League teams. Following his successful career, he joined the Dodgers staff as third base coach for Hall of Fame manager Walter Alston.
When Alston retired in 1976, Lasorda became the 24th manager of the Dodgers and continued to hold the position until 1996. In his 20 years, he led the Dodgers to two World Series titles in 1981 and 1988 and finished with a 1599-1439 career record.
On top of the championships, Lasorda won the NL Manager of the Year twice, one in 1983 and the other during the 1988 title run. In his first year of eligibility, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997 and had his number retired by the Dodgers the same year.
Since his retirement, Lasorda has maintained a presence around the Dodgers organization having served as Vice President, interim General Manager, Senior Vice President, and his current title of Special Advisor to the Chairman.
Dodgers Nation would like to wish Tommy Lasorda a happy 87th birthday!