For anyone who’s ever been to Spring Training in Arizona, they’ve likely heard about Don & Charlie’s, the legendary eatery in Scottsdale. I’ve heard about it for years but never been and last night, I dined there for the first time with one of my mentors in the game of baseball.
We were there for about two hours and during that time, we saw Willie Mays, Frank Robinson, Commissioner Bud Selig and so many other baseball people it was truly astonishing. Following my dinner, I stuck around for a drink with the legendary doctors, Frank Jobe and Lewis Yocum, who have probably done several thousand Tommy John surgeries between them (as well as countless other body parts they’ve put back together).
I was keeping the seat warm for Dr. Neal ElAttrache, who came straight to dinner from the airport and who also has a long history of sports clients that rivals just about anyone in the country (and is our team doctor, too). They were all joined by the medical director of the Kerlan-Jobe Surgery Center.
The place is literally covered in wall to wall sports memorabilia and apparently Ned Colletti used to go there all the time early in his career, as there’s a dish on the menu named after him.
If you make it out to Arizona, you should stop over there and check it out…just make a reservation if you can, as the place was packed all night.
There’s so much coverage out there right now about Duke Snider’s passing, it’s hard to fathom. Rightfully so, of course. He’s arguably the greatest offensive player in franchise history and holds so many team records it’s almost impossible to list them all.
But what’s also somewhat unique is just how long it’s been since we lost one of our legendary Dodgers. There are 10 uniforms retired and prior to yesterday, the Dodgers had not lost any of these great figures since Pee Wee Reese back in August of 1999.
Fortunately, we still have a trio of Hall of Fame legends who are with us today – Tommy Lasorda, Sandy Koufax and Don Sutton, along with legendary broadcasters Vin Scully and Jaime Jarrin. Not to mention legends like Don Newcombe, Tommy Davis, Maury Wills, “Sweet” Lou Johnson, Steve Garvey, Ron Cey, Bill Russell, Davey Lopes, Rick Monday, Fernando Valenzuela, Wes Parker, Dr. Frank Jobe, Billy DeLury and of course, all those who played the majority of their careers in the 80s, 90s and 00s. The list of these legends could go on for pages.
A day like yesterday is the ultimate reminder that we need to learn all we can from these gentlemen while they are here with us. We are so lucky to have all these people at the Stadium on a regular basis and they helped create the franchise we’ve all come to know and love.
If you see them out and about, be sure to tell them how much they mean to you and the Dodgers.