The first half of the season has been a yawn, and some of the biggest sluggers in the lineup have holes in their bats. But one time-tested veteran swings for the fences and hits a home run every night at Dodger Stadium.
Chef Dave Pearson.
Like the Dodgers, Pearson got his start in New York. The youngest of 10 kids grew up sneaking into Ebbets Field to see Jackie Robinson and Gil Hodges, and when he couldn't squeeze under the outfield fence, he listened to a guy named Vin Scully call those Brooklyn Dodger games on radio.
Pearson later moved west, just before the Dodgers did, and now he serves Scully dinner every night in the Dodger Stadium press box.
"He spoils us in every way possible," Scully said as Pearson, 69, laid down a minor work of art: an empanada and taquito appetizer with a sprinkling of chives for color.
Announcers Rick Monday and Charlie Steiner belly up to the same white-linen-covered table every night with Scully, always in the same exact chairs. They call their private corner of the press box Dave's Diner, and they guarantee there's not a feast this classy anywhere else in major league baseball.
But who needs to hear from those guys when the Dodgers have a Hall of Fame authority on food -- former manager Tommy Lasorda.
On Thursday, just after chomping on a burrito followed by a ham and Swiss sandwich the size of a catcher's mitt, Lasorda was in his office, scraping the bottom of a bowl of ice cream. [...]
It had been three hours since he finished his ice cream -- an eternity, in other words -- and Pearson was now bringing ribs, mashed potatoes and gravy with tender young vegetables, to be followed by lasagna, if not a trip to Centinela Hospital.