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A View From the Dugout

October 04, 1987|Paul Burka

What's wrong with the Dodgers? That's what every fan wants to know. To find out, we asked the man who knows the team best--manager Tommy Lasorda. Q. What's wrong with the Dodgers? A. We've had a lot of injuries. I've never seen a major league team go through what we did. When you lose a player the caliber of Mike Marshall for 60 games, when you have seven players on the disabled list and three others who are too hurt to play all at the same time, you're not going to win.

Q. What's been your biggest disappointment during the past two years? A. Finishing where we did. Before the last two years, we finished first five out of nine times. Another time we lost a playoff. Another time we finished one game out on the last day. We have a tradition of winning, a commitment to winning; we owe that to our fans.

Q. Why has the Dodgers' defense broken down so many times? A. When we had Garvey, Cey, Russell and Lopes, we had as good an infield as there was in baseball. Now we're first in errors. You'd have to say it's the guys we're playing.

Q. Is your farm system producing as many good players as it once did? A. We think that we have a lot of good young players. It's just a matter of time for Jose Gonzalez, Ralph Bryant, Mike Devereaux and Shawn Hillegas.

Q. Is the Dodger organization as far ahead of other teams as it once was? A. The Dodgers are a great organization. I can't speak for other organizations. I don't want to belittle them. How many other organizations have won five pennants in 11 years?

Q. Should the Dodgers take a more active role in bidding for free agents? A. I don't have an opinion on that. It's not my department.

Q. With one year left on your contract, can you picture yourself working for a team other than the Dodgers? A. I would hope not, but that's something that's not for me to decide.

Q. Do the Dodgers have the material to win in 1988? A. No. We're going to have to make some changes.

Q. Does that mean go with younger players or get new ones? A. We're going to have to make some deals.

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