Categorized | Mark Timmons

Beating The Giants Was Nice

jackie13The Good

It was Jackie Robinson Day and he was dutifully honored around the entire league yesterday. One of the best parts of last night’s game was hearing Vin Scully recall a memory of Jackie. The Dodgers had the team and staff out to the Catskills for a retreat of sorts. It was winter and so Jackie told Vin that he would ice skate with him. Upon hitting the ice it was apparent to Vin that Robinson had never ice skated before. But that did not stop Jackie from challenging Vin to a race! Vin reminded Jackie that he obviously could not skate. To which Jackie replied, well that is how I am going to learn! Such a competitive fire burned inside of that man!

And there was also a gem put in by Clayton Kershaw who went a strong seven with 13 strikeouts, only 1 walk, only one hit, and oh yeah 1 run. But other than that this was actually an ugly game. Again, I love beating the Giants so I was very pleased at the end of the night. But the Giants gave the game to us more than we took it from them. We held it together just enough to stick around and watch the Giants walk us in another run in the ninth for a walk-off, RBI walk. Loney had ZERO hits but 3 RBIs!

The Bad

Dodgers hitters were 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position. We scattered 13 hits over 9 innings to score 5 runs. But only two of those 13 hits scored runs for us, the other 3 runs came on 2 bases loaded walks (both to Loney) and a sac fly (also from Loney). So our player of the game offensively had no hits last night! We stranded a dismal 12 runners while the Giants left only one man hanging. Belisario serves up an 0-2 fastball for a 3-run homer to give the Giants a good lead, ruining Kershaw’s gem.

The Ugly

Kuo has not looked good so far and continues that theme with another poor outing, even though he is getting plenty of rest and not pitching on consecutive days. Kuo hits a batter, gives up a single, and good night. Belisario comes in and quickly works up an 0-2 count. But wait, then he serves up a tater for a 3-run homer and voila! Blown save! Don’t get me wrong, he is still filthy, but he any pitcher in the bigs needs to know that the 0-2 pitch has to be down and off the plate. Did I mention that we were 1 for 7 with runners on base last night? How about the fact that we stranded 12?

250px-dodgers_logoBut hey, we won the game and that is what really matters. As much as the Giants handed it to us we still had to be there with our hands open to receive it. Loney’s patience at the plate and a sac fly were all setup by hits or walks ahead of him. Kemp extended his hitting streak and the guys that were supposed to hit Cain well did just that. Broxton looked sharp again too with 2 Ks in one inning for the win! And Clayton was just fun to watch. He looks like Hershiser and throws like Koufax!

He was throwing cartoon stuff up there, reminded me of the filthy-ness of Gagne back in the day. I mean guys were just shaking their heads and walking away from the plate last night. That kid really put it all together last night and his head is screwed on so straight as well! He commented that he was most proud of the fact that he was able to go 7 innings, more so than the strikeouts, because the team needs that from starters and the pen was getting overworked. And finally even a little swagger from the humble kid, saying he felt good enough to go 8 and that it would have been no big deal!

But he was quick not to have people mix those sentiments with the idea that he no longer trusts the pen, who have lost him the “W” twice already this season.

“If Kuo is coming in with a one-run lead, I’ll trust him every time,” said Kershaw. “As a setup man, I wouldn’t want anybody else. It’s just one of those games.”

I want to also point out the Kershaw was striking most hitter out on high fastballs in the 88-91 mph range and was BLOWING them buy big league hitters! His curve is so devastating, breaking 3-4 feet at 69-75 mph, that it makes his fastball look like its 99 mph! His delivery looks a bit deceptive too, like Kuo’s. It kind of looks like he short arms it so the ball just explodes out of his body and catches hitters off balance.

  • Looks like Kuroda will be away a bit longer than initially thought, probably 2-3 weeks out it appears.
  • That means that McDonald may get more looks as a starter than was initially presumed. Troncoso, that gives you more time up in The Show.
  • Schmidt threw 7 innings in extended spring training but will need much more time as rehab starts are definitely in order. I’d give it a month or so before he’s ready for a call up.
  • Game Time tonight: Los Angeles (6-3) vs. San Francisco (2-6), 7:10 p.m. PT. Eric Stults (1-0, 1.69 ERA) faces Barry Zito (0-1, 9.00 ERA) so I like our chances for a sweep. But we have to cash runners in!

CHECK OUT ROGER SOBIN’S REVIEW OF THE MOVIE ABOUT JACKIE

About Miguel Salcido

Professional online marketing consultant, husband, father, completely obsessed Dodgers fan, writer, speaker, and all around sports fan. I represented LADodgerTalk.com in the press box at Dodger Stadium last season. My favorite player is Orel Hershiser. I am currently grooming my 2 and 4 year old boys as avid Dodgers fans. Follow me on Twitter, http://twitter.com/ladodgertalk. Oh, and I hate the Giants.

14 Responses to “Beating The Giants Was Nice”

  1. Ken says:

    Hopefully the Dodgers will sweep tonight. They should win the next 2 games from Colorado based upon who is pitching.

    I thought that the changeup that Kershaw threw to Molina was a good pitch and that Molina got around on it very well. Many batters would have fouled off the pitch. Can’t win every battle.

    Regarding Bellasario I think that he trusts the movement on his pitches too much and needs to develop a little more discipline regarding location and then he will be very good. He has come a long way in the last year.

  2. Mark Timmons says:

    Maybe you can see why I was unimpressed with him in the Spring.

    I hope he turns it around.

  3. DRomo says:

    I wasn’t impressed with Bella-SORRY-o either, but I didn’t see a lot of him in the spring. Kuo was the one who really set that bad inning up though. Hitting Sandoval square in the belly was horrible. Those guys need to tighten up down there in the pen.

    P.S. Welcome back Mark

  4. Ken says:

    Presumably the pen will take a while to settle in this the season. Minor injuries, misuse by Torre, lack of preperation in the Spring, too many pitchers in camp, too many longshoots, etc.

    Belasario has already come a long way from where he was. He is on a short rope with the Dodgers due to garbage in his past. He could be DFA’d at any time and he knows it. I would not be surprised if the Dodgers have hired someone to monitor his movements. Maybe he has his head on straight now which may allow him to be a great reliver.

  5. lawdog says:

    Bellisario didn’t look like the same pitcher I saw the last cople of games he pitched. Dude was hitting 96 mph on a pitch that had so much movement youlda thought it was a slurve–but way too fast to be sort of conventional pitch other than a AAA fastball.. Trouble with pitches that move like that. Every so often the en d up right down broadway when they get to the plate. No way the pitcher knows exactly where it will end up when it’s thrown that hard and moves like a drunken bumble on steroids.

    Who knows where Bills and Kurveshaw will be by the end of the year. I’d be felony stupid to predict that now after just a week or so. I ready to plead guilty to misdemeanor madness by saying they look like the second coming of Drysdale and Koufax–so far.

    Kurveshaw needs to trust that changeup a little more. Only saw it a few times. A few times is better than one or two times like last year. If out of a 100 pitches he’d throw about 18 changeups to go with 50 fastballs and 32 curves no no one would even be making contact with his stuff. In high school he did pitch a perfect game once–all strikeouts, no runs no hits, no errors, no walks. No nuthin. Every, one, two three……WHIFF!!!

  6. Bill Russell says:

    I like the idea of Jackie Robinson Day, but it’s lame for everyone to wear #42. The annoucers didn’t even know who was hitting or coming out of the pen later in the game. Why buy a program at the game to see who the player is if everyone is wearing #42? Can’t everyone wear a #42 patch on their uniform to honor Jackie?

    8)

  7. Blue Haze says:

    Bill Russell, I think baseball should have gone one step further and changed all of the parking lot numbers to “42″ in honor of Jackie, now that would be a sacrificial observance.

    Mark, how much weight did you gain eating on that cruise? Welcome back.

    That Kemp kid is starting to make me a believer (I can remove a soft label when it is deserved).

    What a shame to waste a great effort by Kurveshaw, he was having a nice cup of tea, until the bullpen put arsenic in it. Another great example of why you can’t always trust stats alone, Kurveshaw pitched like a dominant starting pitcher, yet is rewarded with a “no decision”, just doesn’t seem fair, at least in the win/loss stats.

  8. Jim D says:

    Koufax-Drysdale would have both GOT THE WIN last night, pitching like Clayton did – because they would have FINISHED what they started. It kills me that todays pitchers do so well, come out after 7 innings, and get NOTHING for it, as bullpens just give the games away. It is like watching 2 games in one – you just wait for the dominant starter to leave after 7 innings, then tee off on the bullpen pitchers in the last 2 innings. Let these starters finish the games if they are cruising.

  9. Ken says:

    If Torre is going to keep flipping Either and Loney depending upon the pitcher maybe he ahould do the same with Martin and Kemp.

  10. Ken says:

    “Pirates beginning to wonder if “LaRoche” is French for “Doesn’t hit in April.” Tim Brown Yahoo

  11. Voldomer says:

    Eye Chart’s injury does not look good. Fortunately we have an experienced pinch hitter at AAA in DY . . . oops.

    Ken, what do you know about Belisario’s past?

    The Dodgers may not be hitting so well, but they sure can walk!

    I certainly hope Manny is not catching the normal Dodgers free agent disease.

    Badger, were folks in your section Sunday as confused by the “fourth out” play as we were in the cheap seats?

    I hate to say it, but I’m almost starting to feel sympathy for the Giants. They are in for a very long year if this series is any indication.

  12. Badger says:

    Belsario with an 1.17 ERA so far. I don’t know, but where I come from that’s pretty not too bad. You guys are tough.

    LaRoche is just a slow starter. He will be up there with Blake – around .200 – in no time.

    Voldy, yep. We were discussing it for several minutes. There were two old umps up there, I was one of them, and both of us said there has to be a way to let the defense know the run counts before they hit the dugout. Just doesn’t seem fair. The only person in the ballpark, including the umpires, that knew that play was the Dodger bench coach that brought it to the attention of Torre. A guy on another message board said they showed a split screen on t.v. and sure enough, Ethier crossed home before the tag. He must have really been moving because that play happened rather quickly.

    Good start for the Dogs. Impressed with the pitching so far. I am being surprised. I like it when that happens.

  13. DRomo says:

    “LaRoche will be at .200 in no time”

    Aim high Andy, aim high!!!

    I think Precious Andy has to break in to the starting lineup again before we think about him having a higher batting average than me. Word on the street is his back is hurting AGAIN.

    Wouldn’t you know as soon as we let DY go Meinkevich (I know I spelled that wrong) would get hurt. I hope they do not bring DeWitt up to take his spot. Blake still needs everyday reps at AAA. Maybe another guy can get his shot.

  14. Ken says:

    I have unfortunately read comments about Bellasario that he would show up late to games, eat like Brazoban, had a bad attitude, not a team player, etc.
    Not surprised if he has orders to never shake off the catcher.

    I still like him as a player and hope that he is a big success this year. Torre could be a good influence on him. Maybe the Dodger organization has a better influence on young players than The Pitts burgh organization. Even Vinny implies that he has never seen a pitcher have as much movement on a 95 mph pitch.

    The Dodger improvement in the field, 4th in MLB, only 3 errors, is a real pleasure to watch.

    Bring on Xavier Paul!

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