Several months ago, I was already sick of hearing how the Dodgers would not spend any money, the divorce was crippling the Dodgers, the Dodgers need a new owner and blah, blah, blah. I was on-board with all their off-season moves – the non-tenders of Wolf and Hudson, the trade of Juan Pierre for Link and Ely and the signings of Jamey Carroll and Ronnie Belisario (OK, I hated the Garrett Anderson signing). I knew what was happening – the Dodgers knew they couldn’t get Roy Halliday, and Cliff Lee wasn’t available. They weren’t going to settle for chumps. Many (strike that, most) of you thought that the Dodgers were just cheap and would not spend any money. There was even some cowardly idiot named McCheapness who came on this board and make fun of what I said and made an ass of himself in the process. Come to think of it MOST, YES MOST, of you argued with me about the same thing.
Well, the fact of the matter is that the Dodgers are a very good team, are in the thick of the pennant race, and have as good or better chance of going to the World Series as any other NL team. The fact that Ned stood pat over the winter and didn’t sign a chump like John Lackey, means that the Dodgers have enough cash to trade for a high-profile pitcher. Ken Gurnick reported today that the Dodgers were pursing starting pitching. That’s not news, I told you that a month ago! Roy Oswalt, Cliff Lee, Zach Greinke and some others may be available and the Dodgers are players. They won’t “gut” the farm, but they will be aggressive. I guarantee it! My preference is Cliff Lee – he’s a rent-a-player who the Dodgers could re-sign next season (or not), who would give them a legitimate ace. He’s not going to command a lot of top prospects, but the Dodgers may have to give up Martin and Withrow along with someone like Ely.
Look, we have three (count ‘em 3) good starters: Kershaw (near Ace), Kuroda (strong #2 or #3) and Billingsley (#2 -#4, depending upon a lot of factors). Vicente Padilla or John Ely may be our #4, but Ely’s star is setting. I am not writing him off, but he’s going to have to change what he’s been doing lately. I like the kid. I like his moxie, but the league has “caught up to him” and he has to figure it out or go back to AAA. Monasterios needs to pitch out of the pen – too young, too inexperienced. He can be effective in middle relief.
Of as much concern is Ramon Troncoso who was Lights Out in Cincy and Lite Up in Boston. He didn’t look like the same pitcher. It appears to me that some days he has absolutely NO CONTROL of his curve-ball. Maybe he should abandon it altogether! His velocity is fine. It’s the curve that is doing him in.
Rants & Raves
- It hurts to have Raffy out of the lineup – a lot!
- Travis Schlichting has been a godsend!
- Adrian Beltre would look good in the middle of the Dodger order right about now. He is leading the Red Sox in RBI (48), Hits (87) and is hitting .339 with 10 HR and 18 Doubles. He is OPSing .908 and playing Gold Glove Defense. And, And… he generally doesn’t really hit until the second half. I hate to say it, but I told you so! ;) Of course, I told you so about Andy LaRoche too, but .500 would win a batting championship …
- James Loney – Dodger RBI Leader – an argument could be made he should hit 3rd!
- Andre Ethier – Struggles on the Road Continue
- The way Loney is hitting, I like this lineup:
- Raffy SS
- Kemp CF
- Loney 1B
- Ethier RF
- Manny LF
- Blake 3B
- DeWitt 2B
- Martin C
I like Martin at #8 – DeWitt will see more pitches.