'Mama Luchy' Strikes Out on Her Own

It was a small, precisely written announcement and the opening paragraph, only 39 words, cut right to the heart of the matter and tugged at your heart at the same time

.   "As some of you know, after 15 years of serving the Dodgers, I have decided to embark on a new adventure, my own company called Athlete Life Management Group in which I want to support all of Major League Baseball," it read.

Thus Luchy Guerra, "Momma Luchy to literally thousands of Dodger minor league players from dozens of countries, announced she was leaving the Dodgers organization.

"I don't consider this a farewell, rather a change in how I bring my professional services to all teams," she wrote. "I will be offering, among other things, passport and visa services, relocation, cross-cultural communication and life support to players."

And life support is just what she has been during her years in Los Angeles and she has invested much more than her time. Guerra, a business administration graduate and mother of two children, entered the Dodgers as a translator and became much more

She has taught English to Latin American players, coaches and scouts, helping young Dominican players adjust to the culture shock of being sent to Great Falls to play and most painfully, arranging for transportation home for the players that were released, among hundreds of other official duties.

Guerra cried the day the Los Angeles traded Franklin Gutierrez to the Indians. She had a soft spot for the minor leaguer who was traded in 2004 for the talented and troublesome Milton Bradley.

"I remember coming from church that particular Sunday morning that he was traded, and you couldn't help but have a tear come to your eye," Guerra said. "He's a special kind of kid, one you always knew would be a leader. I've had probably 5,000 minor leaguers in the past 15 years, and I hate to differentiate. But he's one of those kids who holds a special place in my heart."

Major League baseball named Luchy Guerra as its Executive of the Year in 2004. Surprised at her selection, Guerra told reporters that she was proud to have been elected as a Dominican and wants to share her happiness with all fellow Dominicans.

Only four women have reached such a high position in Major League baseball, among them Kim Ng of the Dodgers and Elaine Stewart of the Boston Red Sox.

Says Guerra, "This is not something simple. To reach this level you have to work a lot and have good knowledge of the ballplayers. You are just a step away from being the (general) manager."

Luchy will have her website open soon – AthleteLifeManagementGroup.com and hopefully other Major League teams will take advantage of her competence and compassion in the future as well as passport and visa services, relocation, cross-cultural communication and life support to players.

"I look forward to continuing both our personal and professional relationships in the years to come" she closed her brief but precise announcement.

We treasure the 20+ years we have been acquainted with Luchy and her remarkable family and could always count on her when we needed information about a newly acquired Latin American player.

We wish her great success in her new endeavor, as do the many friends she has made over the years. Along with he Dodgers we will miss her.

Vaya Con Dios, especia amiga.

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