Tommy Lasorda was a lot more than just a unique and lovable baseball manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers. He won titles in the minors, in the majors, and as well in the Olympics. Yes, colorful. Yes larger than life. Also, managed to an appreciable degree by instinct, and was damn, damn good!
Here are some of his more memorable quotes:
—“There are three kinds of people in this world: people who make it happen, people who watch what happens, and people who wonder what happened.”
—“Listen, if you start worrying about the people in the stands, before too long you’re up in the stands with them.”
—“No matter how good you are, you’re going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are, you’re going to win one-third of your games. It’s the other third that makes the difference.”
—“I believe managing is like holding a dove in your hand. If you hold it too tightly you kill it, but if you hold it too loosely, you lose it.”
—“The best possible thing in baseball is winning the World Series. The second best thing is losing the World Series.”
—“The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person’s determination.”
—“If he raced his pregnant wife, he’d finish third.” —about catcher Mike Scioscia.
—“I don’t want guys who try … I want guys who do! I could go out and get a bunch of truck drivers to play for us who’ll try. I don’t want guys who try … I want guys who do!”
—”My wife tells me one day, ‘I think you love baseball more than me.’ I say, ‘Well, I guess that’s true, but hey, I love you more than football and hockey.’”
—“When I took the job as the manager of the Olympic team, I didn’t take it because I was a Dodger. I did it because I was an American, and I wanted to bring that gold medal where it belongs in baseball, the United States. And that’s exactly what our team did.”
—“I walk into the clubhouse and it’s like walking into the Mayo Clinic. We have four doctors, three therapists and five trainers. Back when I broke in, we had one trainer who carried a bottle of rubbing alcohol and by the seventh inning he had drunk it all.”
—“Pressure is a word that is misused in our vocabulary. When you start thinking of pressure, it’s because you’ve started to think of failure.”
—“If you don’t love the Dodgers, there’s a good chance you may not get into heaven.”
—“The only way I’d worry about the weather is if it snows on our side of the field and not theirs.”
—“When we win, I’m so happy I eat a lot. When we lose, I’m so depressed I eat a lot. When we’re rained out, I’m so disappointed I eat a lot.”
—“Eighty percent of the people who hear your troubles don’t care and the other 20% are glad you’re having them.”
—“I love doubleheaders. That way I get to keep my uniform on longer.”
—“Baseball is like driving, it’s the one who gets home safely that counts.”
—“Guys ask me, don’t I get burned out? How can you get burned out doing something you love? I ask you, have you ever got tired of kissing a pretty girl?”
Some folks are incomparable. He kept the boy’s version of his name right? Tommy, not Thomas. In his own way a true inspiration and trend setter. And in all ways unforgettable.