Most people think that legendary athletes dominate at every level since the time they start playing, but for Orel, the road to stardom had several potholes along the way. After his Sophomore year at Bowling Green State University, he decided to quit the baseball team and hitchhike home to work for his father’s paper company. During that time, he grew a couple of inches, gained a few pounds, took some summer school classes, and decided to give it another shot. Back on the team, Orel’s Fastball had gained more velocity, had better control, and had scouts intrigued but only enough to get him selected in the seventeenth round of the MLB draft. The knock on him had been he’s too soft, not aggressive enough, and mentally rattles easily. In walks legendary Dodgers Manager, Tommy Lasorda, who realizes it’s Orel’s mental approach to the game that needs tweaking. With a new nickname and mentality, Orel starts to dominate on the mound and in 1988, he puts together one of the most dominating seasons of all-time leading all pitchers in almost every statistical category, breaking Don Drysdale’s 59 inning scoreless streak, winning the Cy Young, the Gold Glove, World Series MVP, and MLB Championship in one of the greatest World Series games of all-time. Today, Orel can be found in the Dodgers broadcast booth doing color alongside Joe Davis. Hear his remarkable story of fortitude and determination to become one of the greatest Dodgers to ever grace the field on this episode of Legends Of Sport.
Orel Hershiser – An Underdog Becomes The Bulldog