In this new series, we will be celebrating the life and times of Tommy Lasorda. The man we consider as the most passionate Dodger ever. This series of articles are a tribute to our site namesake, and a celebration of all things Tommy Lasorda, as we declare this week, Tommy Lasorda Appreciation week. From the immortal question, to his rivalry with the nose, to his legendary run as manager, these are our top ten Tommy moments of all time. We honor the man the myth the legend, Tommy Lasorda.
The number six Tommy moment of all time, takes us back to the 1984 regular season. I will set-up the particulars for this one, which is another infamous Tommy tirade. This one has taken on new life since it first happened in June of 1984.
The Dodgers had just played the San Diego Padres. After Dodger pitcher Tom Niedenfuer hit San Diego batter Joe Lafaye after the previous batter had hit a home run, Padre’s manager Dicky Williams got a little heated. After the game while speaking with reporters, he made it well known that he thought that Tommy had ordered Niedenfuer to hit LaFaye because the batter before him had hit a home run. Neidenfuer was fined 500 bucks by Major League Baseball after the game.
Listen to William’s flawed logic…
Williams: “You talk about chicken bleep! Who the bleep do they think they are? So then, here’s a warning so there’s no retaliation. That’s horsesbleep! Neidenfuer my bleep! It takes a lot of god dammed balls. They’ve hit fourteen home runs off of us, they haven’t had their cap spun once. We hit one, they drill the guy in the head. Is that Dodger Blue crap?.”
Kurt Bevacqua later accused Tommy outright. He said…. “they should fine the fat little Italian $500, too. He ordered it.”
Wow! Now that’s some fighting words. Listen to Tommy’s response to this ridiculousness. Tommy begins to talk to reports, and is calm at first, but later works himself into a tirade. This is one of the most classic Tommy moments ever, and the number six moment on our top ten Tommy Lasorda moments countdown. Listen to Tommy set these guys straight. Hearing Tommy tell you that Bevacqua couldn’t hit water if he fell out of a boat is priceless! Lesson learned, don’t make false accusations about Tommy. Check out the transcripts below. I have also embedded an actual recording of the infamous rant. Please be warned, while I have taken out all of the profanity from the written transcripts, the audio recording has a lot of profanity. So if you do not like hearing that sort of thing, then please do not play the recording. Although please note that the recording does bleep out the profanity. However you can still hear it. Enjoy!
Lasorda: I think that is very, very bad for that man to make an accusation like that. That is terrible. I have never, ever, have managed, ever told a pitcher to throw at anybody, nor will I ever. And if I ever did, I certainly wouldn’t make him throw at a bleeping one hundred and thirty hitter, like LaFaye, or bleeping Bevacqua, who couldn’t hit water if he fell out of a bleeping boat. (by this point, Tommy is pretty mad) And I guaran-bleeping-tee you this, when I pitched and I was going to pitch against a bleeping team that had guys on it like Bevacqua, I’d send a bleeping limousine to get the bleepsucker to make sure he was in the bleeper bleeping lineup, because I’d kick that bleepsucker’s bleep any bleeping day of the week. (laughter from the reporters) He’s a bleeping mother bleeping big mouth I’ll tell ya that.
In Tommy’s defense, Bevacqua had a career .236 batting average during his 15 year MLB career. In 1984, Bevacqua played in 59 games, and batted .200 (16 for 80). A player who could barely hit above the mendoza line should never ever make accusations.