It was evidently over before it started. I think the Dodgers are afraid of lightening and it messed with their psyches. According to Dylan Hernandez of the LA TIMES, Matt Kemp said: “I’m going to blame it on the lightning. The lightning was scary. I was up to bat worried I was going to get struck by lightning. That’s why I didn’t get that hit when I needed it.”
I mean, what else could explain the dreadful hitting, ZERO clutch hitting, James Loney doing his best Bill Buckner imitation at 1B and Hiroki serving up lollipops between strikeouts? The team looked “lostless” (that’s a cross between listless and lost). I mean it WAS a team effort (or lack thereof).
You can rest assured that Joe Torre is concerned and I would not be surprised to see some wholesale changed today as the team really hasn’t been hitting for over a week. There were some interesting subplots in last night’s game - for instance Raffy and Russell were battling to see who can get to the Mendoza line the quickest. That should be interesting to watch. As interesting as watching paint dry.
All I can tell you is that baseball is a game of streaks and this too shall pass.
Randy Wolf goes against Scott Feldman tonight and I would sit Martin, Furcal, Loney, Kemp and Loretta. I’d play Blake at 1B, DeWitt at 3B, Castro at SS and Hoffman in CF. Hit or sit! That would be my mantra. I think Joe has to make these guys realize he is serious. It’s one thing to have a relaxed clubhouse, instead of a tense clubhouse like last year, but it’s another to have a “country club attitude.” Show ‘em you are serious, Joe.
ON ANOTHER NOTE:
I found several posts by Brooklyn Dodger in the spam folder. Since they were posts disagreeing with me, he probably thinks I jailed them, but I had no idea they were there until today, so here they are (disagreement is encouraged, even welcomed, sorry for the issue):
1. I must be missing something. Twice, comments that I wrote comparing Martin to Yadier Molina did not post. Maybe those comments were too long and I missed the message telling so. I posted stats from baseball-reference.com (I’m too busy right now to re-post the links, but they can be had at baseball-reference.com), and argued that Molina is clearly the better defensive catcher (has thrown out 48% of baserunners in his CAREER), and quite improved offensively since his .216 in 2006. Strikes out very little. Overall, he might be the better package behind the plate.
2. I posted not too many minutes ago regarding Mark’s statement that Russell Martin was the best defensive catcher in “ALL” of baseball. That post seems to have disappeared (at least, I can’t find it). I offered the following comparison stats from baseball-reference.com. http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/molin… http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/marti… I argued that Molina could rationally be considered the better complete package behind the plate. He has thrown out 48% of would be base stealers in his CAREER, and has improved vastly as a hitter since hitting .216 in 2006. In fact, he hardly ever strikes out.
3. “No matter how he hits, you have to respect Russ Martin – he is the best defensive and signal calling catcher in ALL of baseball.” I hope the above wasn’t a serious remark. It’s not anywhere near reality. Without examining closely the defensive stats for every catcher in the game, the catcher that comes to mind as being the best defensively is Yadier Molina. Here are his stats vs. Martin: http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/molin… http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/marti… In fact, Molina is even an offensive plus. His hitting over the past few years has shown significant improvement over the player who hit .216 in 2006. He hardly ever strikes out, and has a 48% success rate throwing out runners for his CAREER. Martin may have more upside offensively, but it could be easily argued that Molina is the better overall package. Theyre even about the same age, with Molina being 7 months older.
I still don’t agree, but I respect Brooklyn Dodger’s opinion and I would never stop anyone from disagreeing with me. Insofar as the caught stealing percentage, that stat is controlled as much by the pitcher as it is the catcher. Dodger pitchers for the most part, don’t do a good job of holding runners (Honeycutt doesn’t seem to place much emphasis on it), but Dave Duncan is agruably the best pitching coach in baseball and his guys are generally very good at holding runners.