I know, we could do this every day. There are so many classic Tom Lasorda interviews, and that’s not even counting the X-rated ones.
But here’s a new one, and if all the stories aren’t exactly fresh –- it is Lasorda –- that doesn’t mean they’re not worth re-telling when coming from the Hall of Fame manager. Some are probably even true.
This is a new interview, done as part of CNN’s “Red Chair” series, the chair this time placed in the seats at an empty Dodger Stadium.
Some topics are familiar –- Blue Heaven on Earth, winning Olympic Gold (“The greatest thing that ever happened to me.”), predicting he would manage the Dodgers –- but it’s Lasorda, so you know there will be some gems.
There are a couple standouts, beginning with again declaring he wants to be buried under the pitching mound at Dodger Stadium, so that when one day if a little left-handed Dodgers pitcher is struggling, he can hear Lasorda say: “Slow down, son. Concentrate. You can do this. You have to believe in yourself.”
The best might be how he claims to have intimidated the San Diego Chicken mascot, grabbing him by the throat with one hand and taking his cap and placing it over his manly area before a game and daring him to crush that Dodgers cap. Which he declined.
“The Chicken’s scared of me,” Lasorda said.
Lasorda said he told the Chicken never to desecrate another Dodgers cap or, “Next time you do it on the field, I’ll grab you right here (throat) and your eyeballs are going to pop out.”
Lasorda turned 86 on Sept. 22.