John Shoemaker Wins 2nd Annual ‘Tommy Lasorda I Bleed Dodger Blue Award’

The Los Angeles Dodgers announced longtime Minor League manager, coach and mentor John Shoemaker as the recipient of the second annual Tommy Lasorda I Bleed Dodger Blue Award.

It’s an honor given to a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers community who embodies the passion, enthusiasm and love for the team that Tommy Lasorda possessed. The inaugural Tommy Lasorda I Bleed Dodger Blue Award went to Rosalind “Roz” Wyman, who was the key figure in bringing the Dodgers to Los Angeles from Brooklyn in 1958.

She additionally was influential in helping the San Francisco Giants move from New York while also helping the Lakers relocate to Los Angeles from Minneapolis.

Laura Lasorda, Tommy’s daughter, is going to present Shoemaker with his award during a pregame ceremony on September 22. The date coincides with what would have been Tommy Lasorda’s 96th birthday.

“Being selected as this year’s recipient of the Tommy Lasorda I Bleed Dodger Blue Award is an incredibly humbling honor,” Shoemaker said in a statement.

“The legacy of Tommy Lasorda will live forever, as he was the greatest baseball ambassador the game could ever have. The passion and love for his players, staff, fans and organization was incomparable. I love Tommy Lasorda and I love the Dodgers, and I cherish this recognition.”

Laura Lasorda also presented the honor to Wyman last year on her father’s 95th birthday.

“I am so thrilled to present the second annual I Bleed Dodger Blue Award on behalf of my dad to John,” she said. “He is an exemplary member of the Dodgers’ organization and truly epitomizes the spirit and love of the game like my father.”

Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten added: “John has been a crucial part of this organization and a big reason why we have been so successful. Tommy’s influence on Shoe is so apparent. If you look at the amount of talent that has emerged from his tutelage and mentorship, you can see why he’s our Minor League captain and more than deserving of this award.”

John Shoemaker’s career with Dodgers

The Dodgers selected Shoemaker out of Miami University of Ohio in the 1977 MLB Draft. The Chicago Bulls later picked Shoemaker in the sixth round of the 1978 NBA Draft.

Shoemaker played in the Dodgers organization from 1977-1980 before becoming a Minor League coach. Shoemaker has gone on to manage 3,457 games over 29 seasons across six levels, winning 1,777 games and three league championships (1996, 2001, 2005) and guiding 12 different teams to the postseason, including this year’s Single-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes.

In 2015, Shoemaker was named the “Captain” of the Dodgers’ player development system, and has worn a “C” on his jersey since. Also in 2015, Shoemaker won Minor League Baseball’s Mike Coolbaugh Award for showing outstanding baseball work ethic, knowledge of the game and skill in mentoring young players on the field.

Lasorda was part of the Dodgers organization for 71 seasons, which included spending his last 14 as a special advisor to the chairman.

Lasorda won eight National League West titles, four pennants and two World Series titles during his 20 seasons as Dodgers manager. Lasorda was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1997 and passed away in January 2021.

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