Categorized | Mark Timmons

This Time It Will Truly Be The Kershawshank Redemption

Clayton Kershaw now has a string of 12 scoreless innings to go with just 2 walks in his last 2 starts, after recording his 2nd win yesterday.  He was removed after 5 shutout innings to keep his inning count down, but he was dominant and could have probably pitched a shutout.  Scott Elbert followed with 3 more 1 hit innings.  That’s a double dose of good news!  Kershaw’s ERA now sits at 1.91!  BOXSCORE   He’ll probably get the call in the next week or so, as I think Mark Sweeney will be activated tonight to take Saito’s place from the DL (Sweeney?  Don’t get me started – that’s a whole another issue!).  

Clayton Kershaw Is Ready To Redeem Himself!

Alan Steele of the Press-Enterprise  reported this:

Here’s what came out of closer Takashi Saito’s press conference on Thursday.

- He said he hasn’t considered retirement and expects to be back at the end of August.

- The 38-yearo-old also said Tommy John surgery was a possibility.

- He will visit his family in Japan for 10 days. He said he was told to just rest the arm and will not undergo any therapy or rehab while in Japan. He’ll be reevaluated when he returns.

Here’s a telling article from Diamond Leung of the Press-Enterprise who gets Frank McCourts feeling on the state of the Dodgers.

Pre-Trade Deadline Deals:

  • Joe Blanton to the Phils for 3 prospects
  • Tony Clark from the Padres to the Diamondbacks for a prospect
  • Richies Sexson to the Yankees
  • More to follow….

RANTS & RAVES

Nearly every blogger and writer on this planet is coming out with The First Half Report Card.  I am not!   I think if you are a Dodger fan and need a first half report card, you are in need of some of Jimmy Buffett’s “Dumbass Vaccine.”

About Mark Timmons

When you see the invisible, you can do the impossible!

29 Responses to “This Time It Will Truly Be The Kershawshank Redemption”

  1. DRomo says:

    Clayton Kershaw is exactly where he should be in AA, I am glad he is doing well. If he comes up soon I really think he will be in the “Joba Chamberlan” role. Set up guy. This keeps his innings down and exposes him to more major league hitting. Unless we absolutely NEED the pitching we should keep him down and wait until September.

    Haven’t heard any rumors involving the Dodgers, but the Blue Jays are rumored to be open to trading Roy Halladay.He is worth a few of our major league kids and then some. Wow, Ned could save his job with a move like that.He is under contract until 2010 and if we are lucky enough to land Sabathia in the offseason imagine next years rotation: C.C. , Halladay, Billingsley, Kuroda, Kershaw. Even a team with no power could win a few games.

    Seeing what the Phillies gave up for Blanton I am glad we didn’t bite on that one. Blanton is great and an innings eater but 2 of their top prospects for a break even type of pitcher? Billy Bean is a theif!

  2. mark says:

    Can Halladay hit?

    Our pitching has been superb.

    It’s our hitting (or lack thereof) that is killing us.

    Kershaw would have to be in any deal for Halladay…

  3. Captain Loose says:

    I see it a little differently.

    Blanton is a Major League workhorse, with a career 4.25 ERA, 1.33 WHIP. Those guys don’t fall out of trees. The A’s got 3 minor leaguers, two of which are A players. Maybe they will be good, but they are only prospects. The A’s, a low profile organization, can afford to take risks. Ned, working for a high profile organization, cannot. He is expected to do what teams like the Yankees, Red Sox, Cubs etc. do – and that is land the high profile players when they become available. So far, what he has done is overpay players nobody else really wanted.

    His job is on the line. But, McCourt hasn’t really shown he has the leadership skills to put a team together. What he has done so far is paint a pretty picture around the stadium, akin to putting lipstick on a pig. The Dodgers should not only play in the most beautiful stadium in the league, they should win there. So far….. not so much.

  4. DRomo says:

    Hey Captain, So it is McCourts job or Neds job to put the team together? That is a weak arguement that is old and tired.

    McCourts have made mistakes but he has given Ned the opportunity to make this team better for 3 years. He hasn’t been stingy on the money (witness the $18 mill Andruw Jones is getting). People site the fact we lost out on Soriano and Carlos Lee, but they have said they didn’t want to come here, so what do we do with that?

    The leadership that the McCourts have shown recently is by making Ned know he is on the firing line. His track record is not the greatest the past 2 years and trading away the house to get a walk away free agent is not OK. Ned knows that his job depends on the next few months and his moves need approval from here on out.That wasn’t leadership?

    Having an owner who pops off every week or two (ala Steinbrenner) isn’t what we want, and a owner like Arte Moreno who loves his face on TV for doing nothing is a waste of time. The McCourts aren’t perfect but they were suspected of wanting to build a new stadium and what did they do? Improve the old one. They were said to be tight wads? Have you seen the payroll.

    I thought Dodger fans were smarter than this. The more blogs I read I have to wonder sometimes.

  5. mark says:

    I like what McCourt has done, except for the Colletti part. I give McCourt more credit than Moreno. I had high hopes for Colletti in the beginning. Everyone was afraid he’d sell the farm and he didn’t, to his credit. It’s just that most of the players he has signed have been duds. Kurodo is an exception and I guess Jones could turn it around and we’d have a different opinion. Also, if Furcal and Schmidt and Saito can come back strong, Neds’ track record would improve, but that’s a lot of BIG IF’s!

    If MLB hadn’t put the hammer on our signing of Vlad Guerrero when the McCourts were in the process of buying the Dodgers, I think things would be different. McCourt has figured it out: Put baseball people running the team and hold them accountable. If we don’t win soon, Ned is toast! I think only a pennant can save his job.

  6. Travis says:

    I’m with Mark and Romo. McCourt has done nothing wrong.. and probably plenty of things right. I was excited for Colletti in the beginning as well, but he has proven himself to be nothing more than a monkey.

    McCourt hired a new GM, improved the stadium (is it not better?), and continues to build towards a successful organization. Unfortunately he hired a GM who isn’t getting the job done, and I think he sees that. Sometimes big-wigs make mistakes, its the ones that realize it and try to fix the problem that separate themselves from the rest. He is also somewhat of a real estate visionary (that’s where he made his money) and I think the plans for the new stadium are going to make Dodger Stadium one of the premier parks anywhere.

    We will be okay, it just sucks for us that it doesn’t look like the championship-caliber team we want is right here and right now. Either way, we’re in a good position, we just need to make some solid moves.

    Leave McCourt alone, blame Colletti.

    FYI, Steve Phillips said on Baseball Tonight’s mid-season special that the team to watch in the second half in the NL is the Los Angeles Dodgers. Take from that what you will, but he cited that we have a lot of young players coming together, and that Torre will use his experience to tighten that bunch and get good performances from all of us. Also cited Kuroda’s amazing performances of late… and the fact that we still have an awesome pitching staff as is.

  7. mark says:

    Travis,

    I’m inclined to think that this team might be a sleeper, but I also think that the ‘Backs are going to have the wheels fall off!

    I do agree with Badger, ‘er Captain Loose, that Blanton is a nice pitcher. He could shine for the Phils. I don’t think we need him, but a change of scenery could be just what he needs.

  8. DRomo says:

    Blanton is a good pitcher, Not great. Blanton is a high ball pitcher who is prone to the long ball. In Philly that maybe dangerous. Citizens field is not very big and don’t be suprised if he gets lit up in the East. That my opinion. The Phillies gave two highly rated prospects, even at the single A level they were thought of as high in that orginization.

    To clarify, Billy Beane is a theif. He has traded away 4 pitchers in the past year and recieved 12 players in return. He usually wins on these deal too. Remember the Mark Mulder for Dan Haren and Keiko Calero? The only deal I would consider a bust for him was giving us Ethier for Bradley, although they did go to the playoffs with Bradley.

  9. Gary says:

    Gary like pudding!

  10. mark says:

    That’s great Gary!

  11. Captain Loose says:

    Busted.

    I just point out the facts. McCoursechange first hired a moneyball trained GM. I think that is a statement of what direction he wanted to go. Then after a year and half, he swapped horses and went Gint trained old school with Confetti. Results of these choices are there for everyone to see.

    Let me be clear with what I think about our new owner – I believe his heart is in the right place, but, he has not done this before. His background is making money, and he is most definitely doing that. The park looks great, (except for the advertising everywhere you look) the stands are filled, the ticket prices and cost of Dodger Dogs are up – cash is flowing. The value of the franchise is up about 25% since he took over. Muy bueno travaja Paco y Jaime.

    Is it his fault the Dodgers are losers? I don’t know, is it Steinbumpers doing the Yankees are winners?

    DePo’s hiring can be debated, but he is gone. We now have a guy that put this team together and I think we all agree that this team is very, very strange and money has been flushed down the crapper. Who knows what it could look like if the signings were all producing, but, the fact is, they are not.

    And now we will likely have our 6th GM in the last 8 years. Other organizations around the league may not want to deal with us because they don’t know who the heck is in charge around here.

    I miss the old days. The Dodgers name used to represent consistency and stability. Now, well, look at our recent history.

    Yeah, we have a solid chance of doing well in the second half. But, I submit to you, there are at least 6 teams in NL that are better than us, and one of them is the Arizona Diamondbacks.

    The smart money is not on the Dodgers.

  12. Gary says:

    Anyone got a line on Victor Garate?

    He’s old for low A ball, but I’m impressed nonetheless.

    Also, anyone have any pudding?

  13. mark says:

    Garate was signed as a minor league Free Agent in December (FROM TB, I think) and just recently was converted to a starter by the team, where he is enjoying great success. They will probably move him to IE next month to see how he does against more mature hitters. At 24, the odds are long, but he’s LH, so who knows?

  14. Bill Russell says:

    Depodesta was plowing through the Dodgers like a field of tall grass. So much for trusting Billy Beane’s assistant. Frank had to make a change or end up with one of the strongest triple A major league teams around. Why he selected Ned I’ll never know unless he was trying to gain inside info from the enemy. (Little) did he know, Ned turned out to be the Mole. Spending all the teams money on injuried players. I was thinking Furcal was his smartest move but we only had him for 1 1/2 years out of the three year contract he signed. So the award then goes to Kuroda as Mark mentioned. However we have Schmidt, Pierre, Proctor, Loazia, Jones, Sweeney and I know I’m forgeting someone for the scale to tip in the other direction. So the owner should take some of the blame for the GM choices, but Ned’s the designer of this masterpiece not Frank. If I were the Judge I would say 80% Ned 20% McGMchanger. I think Franks willing to fork out the dough but he’d better find a better baker.

  15. Captain Loose says:

    Well said Bill.

    24 year old A pitcher? Any player ready to step in right now?

    Blanton is 27 and so far in the bigs he has taken the ball an average of 33 times a year and pitched an average of 200 innings at 4.25 in the A.L.. That is better than “good” – that is very good. So far this year he has pitched 127 innings. Has any Dodger pitched that many? And, he is doing it for $3.7 mil. Do we have anyone like that? Not really, maybe Lowe, but Lowe makes much more. We could use that kind of starter – heck, anyone could. He is having a rough W-L year, but, like was said, he has had some tough luck. mover is right, change of scenary should be good for him. He is now playing for a Championship.

    Beane didn’t steal anyone. He made a trade that could work out well for both sides.

  16. Gary says:

    Blanton has a 5 ERA and a 1.4 WHIP.

    He doesn’t strike guys out at a high clip and he’s been up in the zone all year … he’s also going to a BANDBOX HR HAVEN in Philly.

    Lowe and Billingsley are at 124 and 116 IP respectively, but with sub-3.9 ERAS.

    I could pitch 127 innings in the bigs … if you disregard the result. Someone just has to be willing to leave me out there while I get hammered.

    If you look at Blanton … one year he’s decent, the next he’s not. Sounds like Odalis Perez. And they just dumped a power-hitting 2B prospect amongst others? Meh. Color me unimpressed.

    I really wanted to use Lowe to get Cardenas off the Phills since they already had Utley … so I’m somewhat jealous of what Billy did.

    WHERE’S MY DAMN PUDDIN!

  17. DRomo says:

    Wow Captain, a 4+ era is good? OK what ever you say. Listen in Sept. we will be glad we didn’t pick up Blanton, I guarantee it. He is going to get lit up against hitting in that park.

  18. Gary says:

    Yeah, since when is a 4.25 ERA not only GOOD, but VERY GOOD?

    Methinks you be deluded, cappy.

  19. Captain Loose says:

    In the AL 4.25 ERA IS good Romey.

    Blanton, in the last three years:

    ’05 33 starts 10th in ERA

    ’06 31 starts 29th in ERA

    ’07 34 starts 21st in ERA

    And last year he pitched 230 innings. Those are pretty good numbers for a guy who only costs $3.7. Considering how many starters there are in the league, around 70, finishing that high looks pretty good to me. And, he isn’t likely to end up on the DL, like our pitchers seem to do. I’ll take those numbers in my rotation any day.

    As for how he will do in Philly? Who knows. I am pulling for him.

  20. mark says:

    I think he’ll help Philly. I think all the trade rumors have probably hurt him. Philly has a chance to win and he’s a nice #4 or #5, better than what they had!

  21. mark says:

    If Ned even considers this, he should be shot:

    “The Dodgers continue to have interest in shortstop Jack Wilson, though that pursuit went nowhere earlier this month. There has been speculation of an expanded deal in which the Pirates would ship Wilson and Bay to the Dodgers for a package topped by center fielder Matt Kemp along with prospects right-hander James McDonald, catcher Lucas May and shortstop Chin-Lung Hu.”

    From:

    http://timesonline.com/articles/2008/07/17/sports/pirates/doc488010257fdda415779793.txt

  22. lawdog says:

    I don’t know anything about Blanton, but I do know something about pitching and eras. 4.25 at the A ball level is nothing to write home about. It’s mediocre at best. They say a pitcher has made a “quality start” if he’s gone 6 innings or more and given up 3 runs or less. 3 runs in 6 innings is an era of 4.50.

    So I guess by that measure he is a “quality starter” in A ball. But just barely. I wonder what his era would be in AA? 5.75 maybe?

  23. Gary says:

    Mark-

    I don’t know how I feel about that deal.

    I’d rather put Ethier in there, but I’d really like to have Jason Bay. He’s a SOLID bat. Wilson, I could take or leave. I’d honestly rather just deal for Bay straight up, but I think that deal could remake our offense.

  24. lawdog says:

    I just watched a video clip linked to the Pirates site on the possibility of a Wilson trade to LA. According to the clip, an LA sportswriter with the Daily N ews (2who also runs the b log on that site) is cwertain the Dogs will trade for Wilson and Bay. The clip’s reporter had talked to the Pirates management who said they want to trade Wilson to the Dogs but the Dogs can’t make up their minds as to whcih prospects they want to givwe up in the deal.

    Looks like the deal would have to be a m ini-blockbuster with Wilson and Bay coming to LA. I would like to see them both in Dodger Blue. Bay is locked down for two more years with a “reasonable” contract. He had an off year last year but is presently hitting in the .280s with 19 hr and an OPB around .377. He’s only 30 and hit more than 30 home runs in both 2005 and 2006 and seems to be headed to another 30+ home run season this year. HNis OBP was over .400 one of those two years.

    I know we’d rather not give up Kemp because of his dreaded “potential” and youth but you don’t get veteran outfielders and shortstops who hit around .300, can play their positions ands one of the two is the missing power link to your team. 30 home runs and a .290 average from left field is just what we need. If the shortstop problem also gets “:fixed” albeit with a two year band aid until DeJesus is ready.

    I’d try to give them Pee Wee Young instead of Kemp and maybe add another excellent prospect still languishing on the farm. Wew could even consider adding LaRoche to the package, but we’ll have to give up something to get those two guys.

    I’m thinking maybe we should trade Kemp if he’s a head case as seems to be implied by some of the clubhouse rumors we’ve been hearing. The guy reminds me of Mondesi. You look at his frame and can tell he’s going to be “fat” in a couple of years. He’s a 5 tool guy but he’s a sucker for pitches low and away, particularly sliders in the dirt–just like Mondy and I doubt that will change. I think he’s probably going to be a guy who hits .275 with 25 home runs and 80 rbis. He’ll also strike out 150 times and get caught stealing as many times as he’s successful stealing a base.

    Getting a true power hitting outfielder and a competent shortstop who both hit around .300 and are both 30 years old is the answer to our prayers. All the others in that list–McDonald, May and Hu are expendable IMHO. See if they’ll take Pee Wee and another top line prospect instead of Kemp and do the deal. We’ve got a guy who’s been up and down with the big club who can fly, has a great glove and is presently hitting .282 with Los Vegas. They’d probably take him and Pee Wee instead of Kemp. don’t you think?

    Or if Kemp is a head case maybe we should just do the deal. They’re looking to get rid of Nagy and Marte as well. Maybe if we trade Kemp and Pee Wee we could get them to throw in Marte for the pen. He’s good–but he’s no Saito. Still, he’d be a set up guy to take Broxton’s slot.

  25. mark says:

    I know that Bay will cost us Kemp, but I would not include McDonald in that deal. I’d do the deal for Kemp, Hu, May and Stults, although I hate giving up Kemp. You just don’t know how much of his great potential he will realize.

    We have Santana to take May’s place, and DeJesus to take Hu’s place and Stults is just an extra piece. Kemp is the Wild Card. Kemp could hit 20 HR the second half… or he could drop to .240 with 125 K’s!

  26. mark says:

    If only AJ could come back…

    If not, this could be our lineup, come August (and it’s not a bad one):

    1. Pierre CF
    2. Martin C
    3. Loney 1B
    4. Bay LF
    5. Ethier RF
    6. Kent 2B
    7. LaRoche 3B
    8. Wilson SS

    I think we’ll have to wait another 2 years on Kemp, so maybe this is the thing to do.

    Just don’t trade McDonald! He’s our #3.

    Give ‘em Orenduff and Sults and Trncosco instaed of McDonald!

  27. Bill Russell says:

    I like Jason Bay and Pudding also. I’m not so big on the Wilson deal. I am holding out hope that Raffy can rebound from back surgery and sign with us again for the next few years. If Wilson is obtained, all hope for Furcal is out the window and my favorite Ned signing will ride off in the sunset.

  28. Captain Loose says:

    I agree with Mark. McDonald is excess in that deal. Give them a lower arm, like the A’s got.

    And Gary, it isn’t just the ERA, it’s the career WHIP, IP and GS stats that make me believe Blanton is better than just good. Too much pudding maybe?:)

    Bay and Wilson do make us better. Good enough? Eh, I have my doubts about that, but if our pitchers can keep up the good work, maybe. I too want Raffy to come back, but, we really cannot count on that. Maybe it’s time to make a plan that doesn’t include our $13 million SS.

    Methinks Jones will be of no help whatsoever. I am of course hopeful, but also doubtful.

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