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Jerry Stephenson dies at 66; longtime Dodgers scout

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Jerry Stephenson, a longtime scout for the Dodgers and Boston Red Sox who had a seven-year pitching career in the major leagues with the Red Sox, Seattle Pilots and Dodgers, died of cancer Sunday at his Fullerton home, publicist Steve Brener said. He was 66.

Stephenson was part of the 1967 Red Sox team that reached the World Series. He won three regular-season games after being called up from the minors in August and appeared as a relief pitcher in one game during the World Series, which the Red Sox lost to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Stephenson was raised on baseball, the son of longtime major league scout Joe Stephenson, who also played in the big leagues. "I've been in baseball since birth," Jerry Stephenson told The Times in 1983. "I've got a picture of myself at 6 weeks cradling a ball and bat."

He was born Oct. 6, 1943, in Detroit but grew up in Southern California. A right-handed pitcher, he was signed by his father for Boston for about $85,000 in 1961 after graduating from Anaheim High School.

Stephenson was 8-19 during his major league career. He reached the majors with Boston in 1963 and also played there from 1965 to 1968. He played for the expansion Seattle Pilots in 1969 and the Dodgers in 1970. He pitched in the Dodgers' minor league system until he started scouting in 1974.

He worked 25 years for the Dodgers and 14 years for the Red Sox as a major league and advance scout before retiring last year.

Stephenson graduated from Cal State Fullerton in 1978 with a bachelor's degree in physical education.

He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Yvonne; his son, Brian; his daughter, Shannon Smaldino, three grandchildren; his mother, Dorothea; his brothers, Tom and Joe Jr., and his sisters, JoAnn and MaryLou.

A funeral is scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday at St. Boniface Catholic Church, 120 N. Janss St., Anaheim.

news.obits@latimes.com

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