Categorized | Mark Timmons

Billingsley Didn’t Lose That Game. Torre Did!

Billingsley Didn’t Lose That Game.  Torre Did!

Does anybody still think Billingsley can’t step up in a big game?  He stepped up big time, and then when he failed to get a call on Pujols (WHICH WAS A STRIKE AND BOTH CARDINAL ANNOUNCERS SAID SO), he lost concentration.  That is not good by any measure, and Chad has to be able to overcome that, but for a kid who celebrates his 25th birthday today, he’s pretty good – he just sometimes chokes in the clutch.  Not the first guy and it doesn’t have to be a continual thing.  He just needs to build on some successes.  Everyone is blaming him, and rightfully so, but I do not believe Chad should have been in that position.Chad should have been out of the inning. on a strike out of Pujols and throw out at 2B by Martin.  Instead, there were two runners on with1 out.    Martin was jawing with the ump, but it’s not the catchers place to do that.  Torre should have been out there YELLING, I SAID YELLING, at the ump and gotten ejected.  That tells Bills that they believe in him and would have given him more confidence.  It might have woken uop the team too.  I guarantee that Tony LaRussa would have fell on his sword, but Torre just sits in the dugout.  That was a horrible way to manage the game…

Young guys need to be treated differently than vets and every player is different.  I cannot begin to tell you how inspired Chad would have been to see his skipper tossed arguing for him.  Would it have worked?  Well, it didn’t work the way Torre did it – sitting in the dugout, letting Chad feel alone, cheated and angry.  Bills lost it… and he shouldn’t, but we’ve seen it before and those of us who watch every game knew what was going to happen.  My point is that it didn’t have to happen. 

Jeff Weaver was very close to being the Cards ace a few years ago when he couldn’t pitch for anyone else – Dave Duncan played a role, but so did LaRussa.  Like him or not, he will stand up for a player.  Charlie Manual (3rd on the ejection list) got ejected right before the playoffs last year and obviously the team was inspired.   It was suggested that Joe Torre wouldn’t have had to motivate a young Andy Pettitte, assuming that he was a clutch pitcher.  He did become one later in his career, but here’s Andy’s playoff ERA when he was in his Mid to Late 20′s:  5.14, 5.69, 5.94, 8.69, 11.59, 12.30 – if Joe didn’t try and motivate him, maybe he should have.   Andy later became a clutch pitcher.

In a scoreless game, where your guy has just gotten a horrible call and your team hasn’t scored, an on the field tirade with an ejection could have been just what the doctor ordered.  Instead, Torre sat there while his team was humiliated!   Bad managing.  PERIOD!  Everyone is writing about Billingsley’s meltdown and saying he’s soft, a head case, etc.  I say “look beyond conventional wisdom, because conventional wisdom is usually wrong!”    Bills needs to toughen up – that’s a given, but a good manager can accelerate that process!

So far, I am the only one taking this position, which means I’m either a genius or an idiot.  You pick!

MORE RANTS:

  • Is Joe really considering allowing Schmidt to make his next start? 
  • OK, I told you Randy Johnson wouldn’t make it through the season.  Rotator Cuff.  He’s toast!
  • Manny sure looks lost right about now.
  • Joe needs to move Kemp up in the lineup – he isn’t seeing any fastballs.
  • Elbert for Sherrill?  Too much!  Give them Abreu.
  • We might get Washburn in late August, after Seattle falls out of contention….
  • Vin is allegedly going to retire after 2010/
  • Dodgers’ Magazine has an article on Vin.  I recommend both the Magazine and Media Guide.  You can’t be a Dodger Fan without it.  Order yours HERE.

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About Mark Timmons

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

45 Responses to “Billingsley Didn’t Lose That Game. Torre Did!”

  1. DRomo says:

    A big league pitcher should not need to be coddled through an inning. If he can not keep it together he is melting down. A team in playoff contention can not depend on a pitcher who will melt down when calls dont go his way. Maybe Bills should have stood up for himself. Maybe showed some fire and guts. But he has NONE.

    I will wait for someone to give me credit for calling the melt down…yet again. I like Billingsley a lot, but the kids is mentally soft and lacks guts when the going gets tough. I want to win in the playoffs this year. If we can expect a dissappearing act if calls dont go his way then we should all expect to be watching someone elses team play in the World Series!

  2. grumpy3b says:

    I have to agree with DRome. Billz is getting paid a man’s money to do a man’s job. If one call is going to cause him to lose focus, he really is looking more and more like Brad Penny every day. Don’t get a call and he has a melt-down/tantrum (have yet to see anything like that though)/or gives up hope…hard to say what s on his mind but it;s sure not the next pitch. Someday he will learn that pitch is gone and no longer matters, it did not cost him the game, he cost himself and the team the game.

    As for Torre as a manager he is on a no-win situation. Billz does not do well in delayed games, he might get down on himself. Nothing Torre can say or do will turn Billz into a man. And yeah, I am calling him out on that concept. bad calls are part of what makes the game great and what makes players great, they can over come the bad call.

    Time to stop calling Billz a kid…he is supposed to be a man by now.

    I really have been a Billz supporter but he really is at a pivotal point in his career, he can become a Bad Penny or the next Don Sutton, he is not mean enough or nasty enough to be DD…it is up to him and nobody else.

    Anyone know if Alyssa has been seen anywhere near Billz? That could be the “kiss of death” as it was for Penny.

  3. Mark Timmons says:

    So, what do you say about Pettitte’s playoff ERA early in his career? That lasted up until he was 28…

    I TOTALLY disagree about what a manager’s responsibility is to a player. A manager can make all the difference in the outcome. Torre wasn’t a manager-he was a by-stander.

  4. Ken says:

    A Manager’s job is just like a parent’s job – Monitor and Enable.

    Every child and every employee is different and needs their parent or boss to interact with them appropriately for their personality within certain guidelines and constraints.

    Failure to both Monitor and Enable is like a one sided coin – worthless & counterfeit (like Torre)

    Torre’s ability to enable is a lie.

    Go Mark

    And for Honey butt (I must but my hand on every pitcher’s butt) people have been saying what a great job he has done with Kershaw. That is like saying Nero was a great fire chief. The rest of the Dodger pitchers have been terrible during July with 4 starters with ERAs over 5.22 and 3 relievers with ERAs over 10.00. Honey butt is PAID A MAN’s SALARY and should not whine when he has to coach more thatn 5 pitchers a month.

  5. DRomo says:

    It was 1 bad call Mark. So should he get a pass to blow a game when something doesn’t go his way? Sure a manager should protect his player but a player owes it to his mananger and his team to suck it up and continue to do his job. It is a pattern with Billingsley, I’ll say it again. When he gets in trouble he gives in and gets crushed.

    Petitte was a young pitcher once did he ever need someone to hold his hand? If Chad is going to be considered “ace material” he will have to be a man. He has NEVER shown that yet. He just doesn’t have it in him. The “Ah Shucks” personality doesn’t translate to the bulldog we need on the mound. He may be a nice kid, but nice kids get beat up.

  6. Mark Timmons says:

    Romo,

    Orel was just a nice kid, until Tommy convinced him he was a bulldog. Have you ever heard Orel tell the story about how Tommy made him who he became.

    I think this is a generational thing. When you are my age, you will have changed your mind.

    Change your thinking – change your life.

    Some people need help in changing their thinking.

    After the game, Torre focused on how well Chad pitched the first 5 innings. Torre and Honey need to be in Bills face and say “You were the same pitcher in the 6th that you were the first five innings. The only thing that changed was your mind. Thoughts are things too!”

  7. Mark Timmons says:

    … and I’m sure Pettitte DID NEED help.

  8. Knickerbocker Dave says:

    i dont like all this negative talk about Mr. T. I’m sure he did the right thing last night – we just dont have all the facts. Lets not jump to conclusions. We’ll just have to wait until sometime in the next decade when we can all read what happened in “Torre – The Dodger Years.”

  9. Mark Timmons says:

    Facts?

    Smacts!

    Hopefully, it will be “Torre – The Dodger Two Years.”

    I was going to get the website http://www.firejoetorre.com but it was taken.

    Bring on Kirk Gibson.

    • Knickerbocker Dave says:

      yeah, you and George/Cash/Levine – none of ya know what you got till its gone. Fine, get rid of Joe. just pray he doesnt end up in SanFran.

  10. Roger says:

    It is a series like this one against the Cardinals — that seem to show the Dodgers youth and inability to rise to the occasion.

    Good game until the Dodgers lost focus, and the Cardinals played like champs.

    Dodgers outhit the Cardinals. I am really more and more disappointed in Casey Blake for his playing of late. Not a factor at the plate any longer. Heck, bat him 8th. He threw a ball in the dirt the other night that Loney could not handle. It was such an easy toss.

    The Dodger pen is, is, si — not gettng the job done.

    I bet the Cardinal fans wonder — “How is the Dodgers record so good. They don’t have a thing out there.”

    Manny needs to get on something. He seems overmatched.

  11. New guy says:

    Well said Romo…and your right we need an ace….
    was it Torre’s fault we scored 0 runs yesterday??

  12. Mark Timmons says:

    Hey, business is slow. Go here and spend your entire paychek this week. Make me happy…

    http://www.uswatersystems.com/

    • Knickerbocker Dave says:

      my ENTIRE paycheck? i’d have enough for 1/2 an RO. can i buy one stage at a time?

  13. Knickerbocker Dave says:

    roger, nice manram blast. must admit his pants appear baggier than usual. is he shrinking?

  14. Ken says:

    Warning

    I clicked on the above site re Fire Joe Torre and received an immediate attack on my PC

  15. Knickerbocker Dave says:

    and well you should! Never entertain such heresy again!

  16. chat is only a 5 1/2 inning pitcher…before those inning start i say he will be in trouble ..and every time he is… but toe cant see that with all the stats they have ..something is wrong.joe always leave a pitcher in to long..any one he see that.

  17. Roger says:

    horsegolf, that is another way of saying, twice the line-up — they get to him.

    I think many of the pitchers in the leagues are that way. Hitters adjust to them after two ABs and then start hitting the ball.

  18. DRomo says:

    Mark, I do remember the Hershiser (bulldog) story. I am not that young! But thanks for the compliment. The point is Billingsley is being hyped up and is not living up to it RIGHT NOW. I have no doubt he can be a good pitcher in this league. What I am asking is can he help us win a ring this year when he is tested an fails.

    We will not be facing the Padres and the Reds in OCT. We may face the Cards or the Giants or the Phillies. Now Bills looked great against a struggling Giants team in April. Could he do it today? I wouldn’t bet my water filter on it! :) We need a pitcher. And right now Bills is a #3 starter on this team. Facts is facts!

  19. DRomo says:

    Crap the Phillies just got Cliff Lee! So where do we go now? Washburn is my choice. We can still keep Kershaw and Bills (AKA don’t give me a bad call or I will melt)

  20. Roger says:

    The Cubs are hot, the Yankees are hot . . . The Dodgers are . . .

    Well now, let us see just what McCourt and Ned have up their sleeve. Will they “do what it takes” to get this team back on the beem?” Or, will they follow the wishes of many here — and not give up the kids or a key player on the 25 man roster to do so.

    We do need a key starter. We may even need a key hitter. We do need some folks for the pen.

    The Dodgers are now starting to play like the Diamonbacks the second part of 2008 — dead in the water.

  21. jay says:

    well, there’s always next year. phil’s win

  22. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know if its just me, but I feel the cardinals line-up is just much better then ours when I watch us play them, they have a FIRE about them that i rarely see from our team….Its just Pujols-Holliday-Ludwick, is alot more intimidating then Ramirez-Ethier-Blake…..oh, and they have carpenter and oh yaa, the guy that shut us out last night…..

    now the phillies get cliff lee…..phillies and cardinals look like the favorites over our boys in blue now and i think it is imperative we make a trade or we win the NL west…and nothing more….

    This whole “ACE” factor is HUGE…right now, keep the farm system is everyones go to line…..well, i remember last year in the playoffs when hamels shut us down soley by himself…i remember thinking (man, we will NEVER win the world series until we have a shut down ace)….

    it is very easy to say “keep the farm system together” but when we are in the playoffs and CLIFF LEE or COLE HAMELS or CHRIS CARPENTER or ADAM WAINWRIGHT are single handedly shutting us down…..you might feel different……ESPECIALLY WHEN WE OUT HIT CLUBS AND SCORE 0 AND THEY SCORE 10

    DODGERS WAKE UP AND LETS GET A SPARK BOYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    MARK, BY THE WAY, great point about torre……its a psychological thing, he NEEDED TO stand up for bills, water cooler tossing, first base throwing tantrum…..i almost got ejected from the bar i was watching the game at and i wasnt even there……TORRE NEEDS TO STEP UP AND LIGHT A FIRE UNDER THE ARSES OF THESE YOUNG GUYS….

  23. Anonymous says:

    LADODGERDAVE will continue to post under anonymous until our boys do something because i dont want to be linked to my blogs when i flip out because a. torres sleeping b. we get ten hits, dont score a run c. manny strikes out again d. loney dribbles one to first e. bills faulters f. kershaw walks someone g. blake just continues playing like blake h. or the worst, i find a HAIR ON MY DODGER DOG!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. Slo Dawg says:

    Holy crap…The Phillies did not have to give up any Major League pitching to get Lee….Unbelievable. I have been following Lee since the beginning of last year when I picked him on waivers for my Fantasy team. Yes he went on to win the Cy Young!! He has had an off year (he’s still on my team) but is showing improvement. I feel he is ready to really step it up now!! The Phillies just got better.

    I am a daily reader but very seldom contribute as I do not do well with the written word. The conversation regarding Torre and Bills is an interesting one. I see both sides of the agrument. I do not feel Bill is “tough” enough to warrant the “ace” position. Really I don’t believe we have an ace..I too think Bills is too soft an gets rattles easily. One bad call should not change the course of one’s game plan or mind set.

    Having said this I am no fan of Joe Torre. He is terrible handling a pitching staff especially the bull pen..Just ask Scott Proctor. When a reliever who pitches for Torre arm falls off it will one day be know as the “Proctor syndrome”…We won’t even go into the batting order and why Kemp is batting so low and Blake so high in the order.

    Right now today the Dodgers are lucky to be 4th best team in the NL., Cubs, Cards, Phillies I see as stronger…

    Anyway I may not write much but if anyone wants to meet me at On The Border in Rancho Cucamonga for a beer (I’ll buy) I can talk your leg off regarding the Dodgers!

    Thanks guys..

  25. DRomo says:

    I was just out that way (Rancho Cucamonga) this morning SloDawg! I was in some meetings in Etiwanda this morning. Maybe next time.

    I hope the Phillies getting Lee is a wake up call. I think most of us agree here that the Dodgers are no longer the class of the NL. They do need to start hitting or the whole “we need an ace” talk is moot. I believe where there is smoke there is fire and maybe there is something to the talk last week of aquiring Martinez for a Loney package. Who knows.

    I think we could land Washburn for a shot in the arm to our staff without giving up a major leaguer. I don’t think Halladay is going anywhere, but if we have a shot at him we have to take it. I know I pick on Bills but at his best he will never be what Halladay is. Halladay is maybe the best pitcher in baseball in maybe the toughest division. And he still dominates. He is a difference maker in the playoffs, much like Hammels was last year.

  26. Anon says:

    On the Border in Rancho Cucamonga?… is there a rest park close to that?

  27. Richard says:

    Not that i know of.

  28. Anon says:

    Bus stop?

  29. Roger says:

    No matter had bad or stupid moves the Dodger might make in a trade now — nothing can be as bad as not protecting Clemente back in the 1950s.

    Before 1952 Season: Signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers as an amateur free agent.

    November 22, 1954: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates from the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1954 rule 5 draft.

  30. John Doe says:

    Its not the end of the world, so dont go jumping of a cliff children. Hopefully Ned isn’t losing his head like alot of the residents here and start making dope fiend moves just for the sake of it. No matter who is on the team we are still going to lose a game once in a while, thats the way of the world. Please dont try this at home kids, let the proffesionals do their job. I promise everything is going to be allright, fellow Mensans.

  31. Slo Dawg says:

    Bus stop right off the patio!!!!!

  32. Slo Dawg says:

    I think everyone expected the losing streak to come sooner or later. The blessing is it may come with an 8 game lead which is better then last years streak….

    There’s the “sliver lining”….

  33. matt says:

    everything i was thinking last night is written in this.. this is a great post

  34. DRomo says:

    Mr. Doe,

    The problem is this is not just one game it is a pattern with Billingsley.

    Here is what I am asking you guys. We have a pretty good lineup. We will be playing in October. Now going into the first best of 5 series we go with Bills and Kershaw 1 & 2 (or reverse order)That is a hell of a leap of faith! Kershaw is so young do we really want to roll the dice that he will perfom in a must win game?

    Maybe then rest of you guys who think we don’t need to do something are happy to be like Angel fans. You know, win in the regular season just to get bounced in the early rounds of the playoffs.

  35. Roger says:

    DRomo – I would add, in a tough post season match up — Bills would be the second game starter, and Clayton the third. That is the problem — the Dodgers do not have a first game starter, or a #1.

    No true, “I have been in the league 8 or 10 years, and I will do my best to win that game.” A pitcher that can carry the team on his back. Orel H., Bob Gibson, Jack Morris, Dave Stewart, Tommy John, Whitey Ford — a real #1. The Dodgers do not have a real #1.

    That is Ned’s fault. Also, this should have been taken care of over the last winter.

    Schmitd was to have been that guy, but he has been out of the picture for a couple of years. No hope there, and that was a card Ned should not have kept open.

    Again, Casey Blake is back to his out self, .265 and 20, not doing what he had been doing earlier in the year — get key base hits.

  36. Slo Dawg says:

    DRomo I don’t want to be ever considered an Angel fan or anything that even resembles one!!! lol

  37. DRomo says:

    SloDoawg that is where we are headed with out an ace. Sure we can blame Ned for that. But we can also blame Manny for that. Holding us hostage all off season kept us from addressing bullpen & rotation problems.

    Roger,
    you got it right! We need a Jack Morris, Dave Stewart, David Cone type who used to be a renta-player for a winning team. I don’t see one. If we want to hold on to the farm and not go “all in” then we have to hope for Washburn or someone like that to fill the void at the top of the rotation.

    I just know we will get an arm.

  38. Roger says:

    DRomo – I do not mind waiting a few more years for a winner.

    Yes, we know the Dodgers are not hot right now. The last two games, the Dodger might have won earlier in the season. Much better hitting in key situations, they did it mucho times earlier in the season. Pitching that stopped rallys, double-plays that ended innings, etc.

    Now, the Dodgers hit into those D-Ps. Now the pen is overtired and out of focus. Now the Dodgers cannot rally much any more.

    I want to see some turn of events to carry this team on — Ethier, Kemp, Martin, and the rest have been as much as they can this year. They are not stars in this league. Heck none of them were even on the All Start team. This is not the team of Cey-Russell-Lopes-Garvey.

  39. Roger says:

    Looks like the Phillies got Lee cheap. Heck, why did not Ned jump in there? Maybe, just maybe, he has another key trade up. Maybe.

    I believe he does.

  40. Ken says:

    Torre did not lose the year – Ned and Frank DID

  41. Bill Russell says:

    If The Dodgers don’t land Halliday or Washburn, our season is over the first round of the playoffs. Mark my word

  42. Anonymous says:

    halliday for bills???

    do you do it??

  43. Bill Russell says:

    Where is Captain Badger when the heat is on? What’s his take on losing out on Lee? For 4 prospects, none off the major league roster. I can’t believe we couldn’t have bettered that offer.

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