For the second game in a row, the Dodgers “mailed it in.” Playing without passion, they managed only 1 run on 9 hits throughout seven innings. The tone was set when Xavier Paul doubled
to lead off the game, was sacrificed to third by DeWitt and then stranded at 3B by Ethier and Loney. It was a classic case of untimely hitting. The Dodgers scored four more in the eighth inning when some fringe players and minor leaguers strung some hits together.
Managerial extension talks with the Dodegrs, have been shelved by Joe Torre. While it has always been common knowledge, Don Mattingly actually stated that it was himself, not Joe Torre, who has been managing this Spring. He revealed that Joe is allowing him to make all the decisions. When Ken Gurnick then asked him to name the #5 starter and starting 2B, he said “I didn’t think TJ Simers was here today.”
Russ Martin had 15 simulated game at-bats and then took live batting practice yesterday. He looked stringer, but not that much bigger. He was walking easily, but did not run. He said that he felt no pain and it was completely normal. There is an outside chance he will be ready for Opening Day, but it’s a very long, long shot. I don’t think the Dodgers want to risk it. If I were him, I’d take it slow.
Highlights and Lowlights:
- Blake DeWitt hit a HR… and committed his 3rd error.
- Eric Stults was pitching a no-hitter through three inning, then allowed a base runner and imploded. What happened to Eric was obviously mental and it doesn’t infuse confidence into the Dodger brass. His ERA is now 5.06 and I would say that he is no longer the front-runner for the #5 spot. He’s not out of the running, but what happened yesterday did hurt his chances. Carlos Monasterios starts the home game today, and we all will be watching what he does as a starter. This should be very interesting… Mattingly went on to say: “It just seemed like once he got guys on base, the tempo slowed down.” All of a sudden, after getting ahead in the count for three innings, he was behind in the count, behind in the count, behind in the count, and that will get you in trouble most of the time.”
- Garrett Anderson was 3-3 and looked like a freakin’ gazelle on the bases.
- Charlie Hough and Charlie Haeger have been locked at the hip. He will pitch a minor league game today. So far, he has not impressed, but also has not looked bad.
- Aaron Miller clearly is not ready for prime time. After his shelling today he has a 67.50 ERA.
- Eric Gagne’s Game is Over with the Dodger – he was released.
- On Xavier Paul’s 2 hits, Mattingley stated “His time has come. We like X. We know he can hit. He knows what he is doing. He has a quick bat and a short swing.” He still probably won’t make the team this year, but I like his chances next year. On a down note, he played what should have been an out in CF into a triple and an error which allowed the batter to score, with Aaron Miller on the mound. He certainly doesn’t impress me in CF. I’d say he’s an Emergency CF – like when everyone else has a broken leg.
- Ben Sheets – 17.28 ERA, 20 Hits, and 19 Runs in 8.1 IP – $10 mil doesn’t buy what it used to. Billy Beane is a genius!
- No, it the Bill Russell on this blog, not THAT Bill Russell!
- Dodgers minor league hitting coach Lenny Harris underwent an emergency quadruple bypass operation after being rushed to a Phoenix-area hospital on Friday with chest pains. Harris didn’t suffer a heart attack, but he was found to have life-threatening blockages in four arteries. Godspeed Lenny!
- Alfredo Amezago, who is still re-habbing was re-assigned, just like I thought when he was signed.
- Clayton Kershaw pitches the away game today. Could an announcement as to opening day starter be forthcoming?