Lasorda vs. Kershaw? Fernando vs. Big D? Vote in the third round of our baseball regional

Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda celebrates the team's National League Championship Series win in 1981.
(Jayne Kamin / Los Angeles Times)

Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. I hope everyone washes their hands after reading this newsletter.

The second round of voting in the baseball regional “Biggest Icon in L.A. Sports History” is over, and we received over 23,000 votes. Today, voting in the third round begins and the matchups are intriguing.

Some rules.

1. There are four regionals, with 32 people in each regional, seeded from No. 1 to No. 32. The winner of each regional will face off in the Final Four. Those two winners will meet in the championship round.

2. With each matchup, there will be a link for you to click on to vote. You can also send your picks by email by clicking here. Or you can vote on Twitter by clicking here.

3. When voting, ask yourself “When I think L.A. sports, whom do I think of first?” and vote for that person.

4. A brief sentence or two accompanies each entrant below. It is not meant to be an all-encompassing list of their accomplishments, just a brief reminder of why they are on this list.


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So without further ado, let’s get to the second round of the baseball regional. Voting ends at midnight Monday. Remember, you can vote by email by clicking here, on Twitter by clicking here, or you can click on the link after each matchup. If you missed the third round of the basketball regional, you can take part by clicking here.

The Biggest Icon in L.A. Sports History, third round (baseball regional)

No. 1 Sandy Koufax vs. No. 9 “The Infield” (Garvey-Lopes-Russell-Cey)

Sandy Koufax: The greatest pitcher in Dodgers history who maintains a certain mystique 54 years after he retired.

How he got here
Defeated No. 32 Jim Gilliam in the first round, 98.1%-1.9%
Defeated No. 16 Walter O’Malley in the second round, 93.8%-6.2%

“The Infield”: Garvey-Lopes-Russell-Cey. They played together longer than any infield in history. Went to four World Series together. It seemed only right to put them in the tournament as a unit.

How they got here
Defeated No. 24 Bobby Grich in the first round, 85.5%-14.5%
Defeated No. 8 Mike Scioscia in the first round, 65.9%-34.1%

Vote via Polldaddy

No. 2 Vin Scully vs. No. 7 Orel Hershiser

Vin Scully: The voice of the Dodgers for multiple generations.

How he got here
Defeated No. 31 John Roseboro in the first round, 97.8%-2.2%
Defeated No. 18 Nolan Ryan in the second round, 92.9%-7.1%

Orel Hershiser: “The Bulldog” had a season for the ages in 1988, when he set the consecutive scoreless innings record, won the Cy Young Award and was MVP of the NLCS and World Series.


How he got here
Defeated No. 26 Tim Salmon in the first round, 89.5%-10.5%
Defeated No. 10 Mike Trout in the second round, 60.7%-39.3%

Vote via Polldaddy

No. 3 Tommy Lasorda vs. No. 6 Clayton Kershaw

Tommy Lasorda: One of the most famous managers in baseball history, he guided the Dodgers to four World Series, winning twice, and remains a fixture at Dodger Stadium.

How he got here
Defeated No. 30 Fred Lynn in the first round, 95.2%-4.8%
Defeated No. 14 Don Newcombe in the second round, 88.8%-11.2%

No. 6 Clayton Kershaw: The best pitcher of his generation, Kershaw has been an outstanding pitcher whose postseason reputation was restored a bit with news the Astros cheated.

How he got here
Defeated No. 27 Garret Anderson in the first round, 91.9%-8.1%
Defeated No. 11 Maury Wills in the second round, 79%-21%

Vote via Polldaddy

No. 4 Don Drysdale vs. No. 5 Fernando Valenzuela

Don Drysdale: “Big D” was part of one of the best 1-2 rotation members in baseball history. Went on to a lengthy broadcasting career including stints with the Angels and the Dodgers.

How he got here
Defeated No. 29 Vladimir Guerrero in the first round, 82.3%-17.7%
Defeated No. 13 Kirk Gibson in the second round, 67.6%-32.4%

Fernando Valenzuela: If you didn’t live through “Fernandomania,” it is virtually impossible to describe it accurately. He was a phenomenon. Why his number hasn’t been retired remains a mystery.

How he got here
Defeated No. 28 Albert Pujols in the first round, 90.5%-9.5%
Defeated No. 21 Mike Piazza in the second round, 90.8%-9.2%

Vote via Polldaddy

Don’t forget to vote

You can vote one of three ways: Click on each individual Polldaddy link above, click here to vote via email (with all your picks in one email) or vote here via Twitter.


When T.O. Souryal heard the PGA Tour planned to resume its season in June, the former Dallas Mavericks team physician didn’t think it sounded far-fetched.

Following social-distancing guidelines on a sprawling golf course, without spectators, seemed feasible. A positive test for the novel coronavirus might derail a player’s season, but not the tour’s schedule.

But restarting the NBA’s 2020 season? Souryal’s experience, during 27 years as the Mavericks’ doctor and two terms as president of the league’s association of team physicians, taught him that would be a complex undertaking. The path to a resumed season remains fraught with uncertainty, including what he calls “the $64-billion question.”

“What do we do if we come back and a player tests positive?” said Souryal, the medical director at a Texas sports medicine clinic. “Until they have an answer for that, I don’t see the NBA or hockey or any other close-quarter team sport coming back anytime soon.”


Nearly three months after the helicopter crash that killed Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and seven others, the surviving members of two families have sued the company that operated the aircraft.

In wrongful death complaints filed Sunday in Los Angeles County Superior Court, the Altobelli and Mauser families allege that negligence by Fillmore-based Island Express Holding Corp. and Island Express Helicopters resulted in the accident in Calabasas.

The lawsuit said the plaintiffs suffered a variety of damages because of the “careless, negligent and unlawful conduct” of the defendants.

John Altobelli, wife Keri and their daughter Alyssa died in the crash. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the family’s two remaining children.

Matthew Mauser, whose wife, Christina, died in the crash, also sued, along with his three children.

An attorney for Island Express declined to comment on the lawsuit.


1887: Baseball manager Joe McCarthy (d. 1978)

1957: Former Dodger Jesse Orosco

1963: Baseball player Ken Caminiti (d. 2004)

1965: Hockey player Ed Belfour

1965: Former Clipper Gary Grant

1980: Hockey player Vincent Lecavalier

1980: Football player Tony Romo

1982: Football player Carnell “Cadillac” Williams

1983: Football player Tarvaris Jackson (d. 2020)


1996: Sportscaster/bookmaker Jimmy “the Greek” Snyder, 77

2010: IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch, 89


Dodgers live workout series. Watch it here.

Until next time...

That concludes today’s newsletter. If you have any feedback, ideas for improvement or things you’d like to see, email me at, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.