The late Tommy Lasorda was known as much for his quotes as for his managerial acumen

Tom Lasorda speaks during a ceremony held in his honor at Dodger Stadium on Sept. 7, 1996.
(Susan Sterner / Associated Press)
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Some memorable quotes from Tommy Lasorda, who died at 93 Thursday night of a heart attack:

“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.”

“Say ‘Dodgers’ and people know you’re talking about baseball. Say ‘Braves’ and they ask, ‘What reservation?’ Say ‘Reds’ and they think of communism. Say ‘Padres’ and they look around for a priest.”

Tommy Lasorda, who won two World Series championships in 20 years as Dodgers manager, died Thursday night of a heart attack after a long illness.

Jan. 8, 2021

“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 only Angels in Los Angeles are in heaven, and they’re looking down on the Dodgers.”

“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.”

Tommy Lasorda
(Matt York / Associated Press)

“Always give an autograph when somebody asks you.”

“If he raced his pregnant wife, he’d finish third.” —about Mike Scioscia.

After being asked “What did you think of Kingman’s performance” after Dave Kingman hit three homers in one game against the Dodgers: “What’s my opinion of Kingman’s performance? What the [expletive] do you think my opinion is of it? I think it was [expletive]. Put that in. I don’t [expletive] care. What’s my opinion of his performance? [expletive]. He beat us with three [expletive] home runs. What the [expletive] do you mean? What is my opinion of his performance? How can you ask me a question like that? I’m [expletive] off to lose a [expletive] game, and you ask me my opinion of his performance?”

Tommy Lasorda
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

“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!”

“Nobody has to tell Frank Sinatra he is a good singer and nobody has to tell me that I am a good manager.”

“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.”

Tommy Lasorda, who died Thursday night of a heart attack at age 93, bled Dodger Blue nearly his entire life, spilling it across every corner of the world.

Jan. 8, 2021

“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.”

“People say you can’t go out and eat with your players. I say why not.”

“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?”


“When I was interviewed after I got hired to replace Walter Alston, a future Hall of Famer, I was asked: ‘Don’t you feel pressure on you?’ I said: ‘Want to know something? I’m worried about the guy who’s going to have to replace me.’”

“I bleed Dodger blue and when I die, I’m going to the big Dodger in the sky.”