Dodgertown Memories

Lee Lacy

Second Baseman-Outfielder

Versatile outfielder and second baseman Lee Lacy played for the Dodgers from 1972-1978, including in three World Series.

Iconic Holman Stadium was privately built by Dodger President Walter O’Malley and opened on March 11, 1953.

Leondaus Lacy may be remembered in Dodger history for his ability to spark the Dodgers at opportune times. His pinch-hitting ability is well-documented, as in 1978, he had three consecutive home runs coming off the bench, establishing a major league record. Lacy appeared in three World Series for the Dodgers in 1974, 1977 and 1978. He also played for the 1979 World Champion Pittsburgh Pirates. During his 16-year career as an outfielder and part-time infielder, Lacy batted .286 with 1,303 hits in 1,523 games.

I just remember being embraced by the O’Malley family. I remember Walter and Kay O’Malley. I remember the barracks my first year in 1970 before we built the new complex. I remember the old uniforms being very heavy and very uncomfortable. I also remember the hospitality of Kay O’Malley and Walter. In 1969, I was rated as one of the top players in the State of California and I was the Dodgers’ second round draft choice and went to Ogden, Utah and played. My first visit to Dodger Stadium was in 1970 where we worked out. From there, we would get on our private plane called the Whisper Jet into Vero Beach. I remember being in the barracks right across from Walter and Kay O’Malley, because their unit kind of set in the center of the complex. I remember Walter O’Malley being outside in his golf cart that he loved to drive around in and, believe it or not, when I would come out of my room he would actually drive down and pick me up and take me over to the clubhouse, which was adjacent to Holman Stadium. I remember Kay and Walter inviting me into their barracks there at Dodgertown and when you would come in the front door they had a round table, I never will forget it, it was sitting right in the center and he and Kay served me food and talked to me about the organization and how happy they were by me being a part of the organization and how they loved the way I played baseball. I remember Kay and Walter were just wonderful people. Every time he would see me, he would say ‘Hello, Lacy’ in that deep voice and he would give me the biggest smile. Kay was just a wonderful lady. They were all so hospitable and so polite and so kind to everyone. They were actually hands-on 100 percent. They communicated with all of the players. They made everyone feel so close and we had such a family back in those days. I remember Peter (O’Malley) being a young kid; I remember his glasses. His Dad was so proud of him and he would walk around and he was learning the ropes of baseball. I remember his Mom being proud of him and how he was always a part of the organization and was always there. I remember Holman Stadium just being such a wonderful place to play baseball and Dodgertown as a whole just being a wonderful environment to play baseball.

“We had the theatre, of course. We had the tennis courts, we had the basketball courts, we had golf and we had fishing close by. We were a close-knit and proud to have Dodgertown at our fingertips. We used to eat at a facility right outside Dodgertown, within walking distance. We would go there and have dinner. We had great relationships with the people in the local community of Vero Beach. We also had a great relationship with the people in Gifford. We used to go over there and they had a soul food restaurant. Players of all nationalities would go there and enjoy the different types of food that they would serve there in the community. It was just a wonderful experience that I had. This year is the 37th year that I have been coming out to (Dodger) Stadium. I have nothing but fond memories about Dodger Stadium, Dodgertown, Vero Beach, Gifford and my relationship early in my career with the O’Malley family. It was just great!”

Lee Lacy