Ventura College baseball alumnus Marty Lamb '87 played an integral role in the Los Angeles Dodgers' return to the World Series championship this past fall. He was the signing scout for Walker Buehler, Will Smith, Matt Beaty and Caleb Ferguson from the 2020 title-winning club, but his off-the-field work is also garnering attention. The following article by Ken Gurnick appeared on MLB.com on December 22, 2020.
LOS ANGELES -- You might not associate the name Marty Lamb with the 2020 World Series champion Dodgers, but they might not have that title without him.
Lamb was the signing scout for Walker Buehler, Will Smith, Matt Beaty and Caleb Ferguson from last year's roster. Zach Reks, added to the roster last month, is another Lamb signing, as is 2020 first-rounder Bobby Miller, as were Chad Billingsley, A.J. Ellis, Bryan Morris and Cory Wade.
If you've ever thought about repaying the unsung scouting heroes who discover future stars who win World Series, support Lamb's favorite charity for the holidays.
When Lamb isn't signing players for the Dodgers, he's serving on the board of directors for Refuge for Women, a nonprofit, faith-based organization providing specialized long-term care for women who have escaped human trafficking or sexual exploitation.
"I continue to learn what a nasty, dark and evil place these women are in that I have decided to try to help any way that I can," Lamb said.
With in-person scouting eliminated this year because the pandemic essentially wiped out the schedule of amateur games, Lamb had time to assist family friend Ked Frank and his wife, Michelle, founders of Refuge for Women, in their native Kentucky, where the first of a series of shelters is operating.
The shelter property is 50 acres, and Lamb has become a moonlighting maintenance man, borrowing a neighbor's tractor to mow the rolling hillsides. He's enlisted support from the Dodgers organization, and a shelter is expected to open in California sometime next year.
"It's touched my heart, for sure," Lamb said. "I've met the women, most are age 20 to 25. I don't know their stories and I don't ask. I figure they just need somebody to care, to love on them and get them in the right direction."
Lamb lives in Nicholasville, Ky., but he played ball at Ventura College before gaining his kinesiology degree at Northern Colorado and a master's degree at Mississippi State. He coached at Texas Tech and Southern Mississippi before becoming a scout.
Lamb's list of players drafted is the envy of any scout. That's his profession. But he's now found another purpose through his work with Refuge for Women.
"I'm totally in and just trying to get the word out," Lamb said. "They started a social enterprise, a candle business. It's pretty cool, the whole setup. It's hard to say I enjoy it. But I know what a rough life they've had, and they really appreciate the help."
Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers for MLB.com since 2001.
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