Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Legendary Peanut Man Roger Owens Deservedly Honored By City of Torrance

Roger Owens

Dodger Stadium has lost a lot over the years that I fear that the historic Stadium may never feel the same again. Most notably the loss of legendary broadcaster Vin Scully along with long time stadium organist Nancy Bea Hefley are among the most felt. With all of the upgrades to the stadium the environment feels starkly different than it did in years past. I feel as if the Dodger Stadium tradition is being lost every day.

There is one such jewel of Chavez Ravine that is still there thankfully. He patrols the loge area around the left field line. That jewel is peanut man Roger Owens, who has been there since the Stadium opened in 1962. He first began selling sodas at the L.A. Coliseum when he was a teenager.

His story is unique and his tenacity resolute. You should know it if you haven’t heard it. He was in and out of foster homes as a kid after his mother suffered a mental breakdown. He nearly died in a car accident during training for the National Guard and slipped into a coma. He never gave up despite the long odds. He even wrote a book about his adventures.

The now 74-year old peanut vendor has been through and seen it all. His trademark behind the back peanut throw is well known at Dodger Stadium. If you’ve never seen Roger than I would suggest you travel to the left field loge section (normally between aisles 101-167) and order a bag of peanuts from him.

I’m happy to inform you that the city of Torrance honored Roger with a certificate of recognition for all of his hard work over the years. Roger responded by throwing everyone a bag of peanuts, behind the back of course. He did his thing in front of the Torrance city council and everyone was grateful for his skills.

The man can simply throw a bag of peanuts like nobody’s business. But if you ever ask him about it, he’s far too humble to admit it.

“I throw a fast nut, a curve nut and knuckle bag,”

“Last year I only missed two throws,” he says. “Probably cost me the Cy Young.”

“You know, the Dodgers have talked to my agent and offered me $300,000 to pitch in August, September and October — which sounds like a lot, but who wants to take a pay cut? Besides, my EBA — Earned Bags Average — is below one.”


I had the honor of meeting Roger many years ago when I was a younger man. My Uncle and I were catching a game in the loge section near aisle 161. We spotted Roger wandering the section and ordered a couple of bags of peanuts from him. He gave us his trademark behind the back throw and our change. He then granted our request for a picture and a handshake. I’ll never forget it. I’m so glad I got to meet him.

And if you’ve never met him, I urge you to do so next season. He’ll be there in the loge section between home plate and the third base line. One of the last jewels of Dodger Stadium thankfully still sparkles bright.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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Scott Andes
Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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