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Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda had more than just Slimfast for dinner Saturday night. More than 300 people attended a sit-down dinner at the Penn Tower Hotel to hear Lasorda speak. The meal was a fund-raising event for Penn's baseball team, aimed at covering the team's traveling expenses. A silent auction that included a Kenny Walker Washington Bullets jersey, a poster autographed by Dodger Mike Piazza and official World Series baseballs was held in conjunction with the dinner. Lasorda's stories of his experiences with the Dodgers had the audience captivated. During his speech, he stressed the importance of getting a good education and always striving to be the best. "You must always look for the open door," Lasorda said. "Just because God delays does not mean that God denies." Lasorda said he believes that the key to a team's success is pride in its members. "Everyone has to play for the name on the front of the shirt and not for the name on the back," he said. Penn center fielder Sean Turner said that although he had seen Lasorda speak previously, he still found the speech motivational. "The guys on the team have been waiting for this for a very long time," the Wharton senior said. A few autograph collectors were able to get Lasorda's signature before and after the dinner. "He signed autographs for any of the people around who asked for it," Wharton freshman Mark Nodelman said. "He was real nice about it." At the dinner, the baseball players were also presented with their 1995 Ivy League Championship rings -- which were paid for by the money raised at the event. At the conclusion of the dinner, Penn baseball coach Bob Seddon presented Lasorda with a ceramic bust in tribute of his contributions to baseball. The 1996 baseball season will mark Lasorda's 20th year as the Dodgers' manager. "For him to come in here and do this as a friend for our program is very exciting," Seddon said. "There's nobody else like him in baseball right now."

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