It certainly did this past spring. Everyone knew that Andrew Lambo had one of the finer bats in all Southern California. But there were rumors that he also came with considerable baggage. Many scouts whispered that he was a troublemaker, an off-the-field problem.
The Dodgers are an organization that considered character very much in the equation when evaluating a player. So, they did considerable backgrounding on Lambo and found the case to be not quite what it was pictured.
They discovered that many of his so-called transgressions were exaggerated. What's more, those that had occurred had happened when he was a sophomore in high school, running with an older crowd. He had since moved to a smaller town and had straightened his life out. They did an in-depth interview with him and found him to be a good kid looking for a chance.
They evaluated him as having a first-round bat but felt since so many other teams were shying away they could gamble and wait a bit on him. In the fourth round, they pulled the trigger, drafted and signed him.
They sent him to the Gulf Coast League and they're certainly not sorry about the results. His batting prowess turned out to be every bit as good as contended. His swing reminds many of that of James Loney- a smooth, left-handed cut- and the results were splendid- a .345 average with signs of power as he produced five homers.
He also reminds people of Loney in that he's a stylish first baseman but he wasn't used all that much there. No, they wanted to see his play in right field and there he did just fine, fielding well and showing an arm that can handle the post.
Off the field? No problems at all. Lambo has vowed to make the Dodgers glad they gave him the chance and so far he's done all that. Certainly he did more than enough to win this award as the Dodgers Rookie of the Year.
The award will be presented before a spring training game.
Andrew Lambo bl tl 6-3 198 b-August 11, 1988 Obtained- Selected in the fifth round, 2008 amateur draft year team ave obp slug gm ab r h 2b 3b hr rbi 2007 GCL .343 .440 .519 54 181 38 62 15 1 5 32 Wellman Award winners: 2007—1B Andrew Lambo, GC Dodgers 2006—LHP Clayton Kershaw, GC Dodgers 2005—RHP Chad Billingsley, VB-Jacksonville 2004—LHP Greg Miller, VB-Jacksonville 2003—LHP Jonathan Figueroa, Great Falls 2002—1B James Loney, Great Falls 2001—OF Victor Diaz, GC Dodgers 2000—RHP Heath Totten, Yakima 1999—OF Chin-Feng Chen, San Antonio 1998—OF Jorge Piedra, Yakima 1997—LFP Jeff Williams, San Antonio 1996—LFP Ted Lilly, Yakima 1995—3B Adrian Beltré, Santo Domingo 1994—RHP Chan-Ho Park, San Antonio 1993—OF Karim Garcia, Bakersfield 1992—SS Wilton Guerrero, La Vega, DR 1991—RHP Terric McFarlin, Bakersfield 1990—1B Mike Busch, Great Falls 1989—RHP Kiki Jones, Great Falls 1988—RHP Chris Nichting, Vero Beach