Marty Lamb Dodger Scout of the Year

Marty Lamb is the 2007 Dodgers Dugout/ Scout of the Year, the 22nd scout so honored in an award started in 1986. Chad Billingsley, Cory Wade, Bryan Morris, Preston Mattingly and James Adkins have all been scouted and signed by Lamb over the past four years.

The award is named after the first Dodger scout in history, Larry Sutton, who was hired by Charlie Ebbets in 1909. Ill health finally forced him to retire in 1939 and he died June 28, 1944 at the age of 86.

Lamb began a remarkable run in 2003. Lamb, who scouted the Midwest plus Kentucky and Tennessee for the Dodgers, was concentrating in Ohio that year on a pitcher that many had felt would go early in the draft but who was slipping badly because of a so-so senior year. Lamb never lost his focus though and the Dodgers came up with Chad Billingsley in the first round as a result.

There wasn't to be any first-rounder for Marty in 2004 or any early-rounder for that matter but he had spotted a player at Kentucky Wesleyan University, an infielder who had been used some in relief. Lamb felt he had the arm to have a real chance as a pitcher so they selected Cory Wade in the 10th round. He's now on the 40-man roster.

In 2005 the Dodgers didn't have a choice until the supplemental round right after the first. It was then that they made the last-minute decision to switch to a pitcher from the University of Tennessee that Marty had scouted well- Luke Hochever.

That as you know didn't work out but it was hardly Lamb's fault. He was there with a contract in hand that Luke had agreed to when Scott Boras swept in to upset the playing field.

In 2006, the Dodgers made Clayton Kershaw from Texas their first choice but they also had another first-rounder plus a supplemental pick for losing Jeff Weaver. Here they once again moved in the direction of Lamb-scouted players.

With their second first-rounder they took righthander Bryan Morris from Motlow State Community College in Tennessee. He went on to be named the top prospect in the Pioneer League in a Baseball America poll. He spent last season rehabbing after Tommy John surgery but should be ready to go in 2008.

With the supplemental choice they selected still another of Lamb's prospects, infielder Preston Mattingly from Evansville, Ind. It was quite a scouting coup at the time, for the Yankees, Red Sox and Twins were all poised to make Don's son their next selection had the Dodgers not swooped in. Although Mattingly the younger has had little baseball experience, it's the Dodgers feelings that his athleticism will carry him to the top.

In 2007, Marty was back at the University of Tennessee- this time for a lefthander who had erased many of the pitching records that Hochevar had set at that school. And with a supplemental pick gained by the loss of Julio Lugo, the Dodgers came up with James Adkins who went on to Great Lakes where he pitched very well.

Let's see- Billingsley, Wade, Morris, Mattingly and Adkins. That's quite a four-year run. It earned Marty a promotion for when John Barr recently left his job as LA"s East Coast scouting surpervisor to become the Giants scouting director, Lamb was promoted to take over the position.

So Marty will be spending 2008 in a scouting supervisor's role. And he'll have the award as the Dodger Scout of the Year to take with him.

All the winners will receive their awards before a spring training game. We will continue with the Rookie of the Year, Pitcher of the Year and Player of the Year on this site in the future.

Previous Larry Sutton Award winners:

2007—Marty Lamb
2006—Calvin Jones
2005—Clair Reirson
2004—Mitch Webster
2003—Clarence Johns
2002—Logan White
2001—Lon Joyce
2000—Tommy Thomas
1999—Mike Leuzinger
1998—Joe Ferrone
1997—Pablo Peguero
1996—Bobby Darwin
1995—Glen Van Proyen
1994—Mike Brito
1993—Camilo Pascual
1992—Dale McReynolds
1991—Hank Jones
1990—Deni Pacini
1989—Bill Pleis
1988-Gib Bodet
1987—Ralph Avila
1986—Tommy Mixon