Dismissed scout sues Dodgers, claims age discrimination

An aerial view of Dodger Stadium.
A longtime major league scout has sued the Dodgers for allegedly violating age discrimination laws when they declined to renew his contract for the 2021 season.
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

A longtime major league scout has sued the Dodgers, alleging the team violated age discrimination laws in declining to renew his contract for the 2021 season.

According to the suit, the Dodgers downsized their professional scouting department for the 2021 season and, in so doing, declined to renew the contracts of the four oldest members of the department.

Tim Schmidt, 65, is the plaintiff. The other three scouts, as cited in the suit, are over 60. The suit was filed Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court.

The Angels describe federal prosecutors’ request as a ‘fishing expedition’ after the team handed over more than 350,000 documents in the past 2 years.

Sept. 8, 2021


Schmidt has scouted for the Dodgers, Angels and other major league teams since 1989. According to the suit, he joined the Dodgers in 2017 and received merit-based salary increases in 2018 and 2019. Yet the suit also alleges the team subjected him to “adverse job assignments” and “unwarranted criticism” because of his age, then declined to renew his contract for the same reason. At the same time, the suit alleges, the Dodgers retained four professional scouts in their 30s who had been hired in 2020, including three who had never scouted at any level before then.

Schmidt, reached by telephone, declined to comment on the suit. Dodgers spokesman Joe Jareck said the team does not comment on pending litigation.

The other three over-60 scouts are not part of the suit. Donald Potter, the attorney for Schmidt, declined to say whether he had discussions with them about joining the suit.

The suit asks that the court order the Dodgers to pay an unspecified amount of damages, including punitive damages “in an amount appropriate to punish and make an example of them.”