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Far From the Madding Crowd : Dodger Steve Sax Makes His Home In the Quiet of Manhattan Beach

October 19, 1986|KATHY OSTLER | Kathy Ostler is a Los Angeles writer

Steve Sax has had the season of his life. The eager, likeable Rookie of the Year in 1982 has emerged as a self-confident Dodger team leader and one of baseball's best hitters. And Sax's home in Manhattan Beach says a lot about the person he has become since arriving in Los Angeles.

His World Series team trophy is on the coffee table in the living room. His National League Rookie of the Year plaque is in his office, along with the baseball he hit for his first grand-slam home run. But Sax is just as proud of photos of his parents, and of the artwork, furniture and color schemes he selected for the home. "After I put down the deposit on the house, I drove by it at night," he says. "I wanted to see it again. The house was locked, so I came in through a window. I had visions of what I wanted to put here and there. I knew what colors I wanted--the blues and the beiges.

"Seeing this house now, I feel like it's done the way I wanted."

After home games, the Dodgers' second baseman often relaxes in the family room, watching ESPN, a cable sports network, for hours.

When his schedule allows, Sax can be found in his backyard, barbecuing--perhaps for his girlfriend, a few neighbors and Dodger teammates Mike Scioscia and Mike Marshall (his former roommates, and two of his closest friends.)

The Sax family is close, and Steve's purchase of the house two years ago allows them to spend more time together. His sister, Tammy, lives with Steve and his dogs, Holly and Sluggo (named in honor of good friend Steve Garvey). Sax's mother is a frequent visitor; so, in the off-season, is brother Dave, a catcher for the Boston Red Sox.

A fierce competitor on the field, Steve has learned to channel his intensity--one of the reasons he had a great season, and, also, why his home is so important to him. "I wanted something that was mine," he says, "and I liked this area. It's private and quiet. I love my house. I feel very fortunate to have a house like this."

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