Former Los Angeles Dodgers scout and executive Ralph Avila, a key figure in the team’s successful in-roads into the Dominican Republic, died Monday in South Florida at age 92, the team confirmed.
Avila’s son Al, a baseball executive himself, told ESPN Deportes his father died from natural causes.
Avila joined the Dodgers as a scout in 1970 and was still advising the team as recently as 2021. He signed future Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez as well as Ramon Martinez, Candy Maldonado, Mariano Duncan, Raul Mondesi, Omar Daal and Jose Vizcaino.
Avila helped create the Dodgers’ academy in the Dominican and was one of the architects of the Dominican Summer League. He was honored as the major leagues’ International Scout of the Year in 2006, becoming the first person to receive the award.
The Avila family has become a fixture in the major leagues.
Ralph Avila’s son Al was the Detroit Tigers’ general manager from August 2015 to August 2022.
Al’s son Alex had a 13-year major league career as a catcher with the Tigers (2009-15, 2017), Chicago White Sox (2016), Chicago Cubs (2017), Arizona Diamondbacks (2018-19), Minnesota Twins (2020) and Washington Nationals (2021), making the American League All-Star team in 2011.