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A Brand New Kemp?

A Brand New Kemp?

Well, at least he’s talking like he’s finally extracted his dome from his posterior.  Of all the position players on the Dodgers, perhaps no one

That Kind Of Year

personifies “under- achievement” more than Matt Kemp.  On what was supposed to be his “superstar year” in which most fantasy leagues rated him TOP 3 in the outfield, Matt Kemp tanked.  Whether it was a woman, fame, money or all of the above is not as important as the fact that Matt Kemp himself recognizes it and vows to correct it.

Dylan Hernandez of The LA Times reports that Kemp is making some predictions for next season, and not just about himself:

First, he said James Loney will hit 20 home runs.

When he was asked how many home runs he will hit, Kemp replied, “40.”

“I have to pay the fans back, man,” Kemp said. “They deserve it.”

Laughing, he added, “They’ve been mad at me all season. I have to do something for them, something special. We all do. Give them a little taste right now.”

Maybe Bob Segar wrote his song “Understanding” for Matt Kemp:

It seems like only yesterday
I didn’t have a clue
I stood alone not knowin where to turn
Now suddenly I look around
And everything looks new
I don’t know why, but I think I’m startin’ to learn

They call it understanding
A willingness to grow
I’m finally understanding
There’s so much I can know
Until the day you came along
I used to just get lost

I only heard the things I wanted to hear
It always seemed like no one cared
But then you took the time
And now I look and everything seems clear
You’ve got me understanding
You’ve really helped me see

I’m finally understanding
It’s meant so much to me
You’ve got me understanding
You’re really on my side
You’ve got me understanding

Let’s hope that’s what it is – Maturity, Understanding, A Willingness To Grow.  I don’t know why, but I think he’s starting to learn…

Tony Jackson of ESPN/LosAngeles said it this way:

Although Kemp’s offensive numbers fell off from last season, it isn’t as though he has had a bad season. He is hitting a paltry .248, but he does have 25 homers, the most on the club, and 83 RBIs. And while he strikes out way too often — 168 times in 656 plate appearances — he also is second on the team with 52 walks, and he has played in 200 consecutive games dating to last season, the longest current streak in the majors.

And yet, no conversation about him is complete without including all that has been written, said and speculated on this season concerning his approach, his attitude and his maturity.

There was that three-game disciplinary benching in June, right after Kemp reportedly got into a dugout confrontation with bench coach Bob Schaefer. There were the comments from the team’s general manager as far back as April, when Ned Colletti said Kemp’s baserunning and defense were below average and openly questioned whether Kemp’s new two-year, $10.95 million contract might have made him too comfortable after he made just $467,000 last year.

There have been mistakes, everything from baserunning blunders to misjudged fly balls to failures to back up plays and a basestealing success rate (55.9) that is far too low for a player with Kemp’s speed. And there was perhaps his most infamous on-field moment of the season, when he cost the Dodgers a critical run in a critical game against the San Diego Padres by jogging home and failing to touch the plate before the third out of the inning was made behind him at third base.

Personally, I think that Kemp did not like Joe Torre, and you will hear more about that in the coming weeks.

Can Matt Kemp harness his enormous potential?  Stay tuned!

About Mark Timmons

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

9 Responses to “A Brand New Kemp?”

  1. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I have been a Matt Kemp supporter, but words are a dime a dozen unless backed up with action and actual results. I would be just as happy if he kept his mouth shut, and quietly went about the business of using this offseason to prepare himself physically and mentally for next season, and the years beyond. It’s a cliche because it’s true. ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. The proof will be in the results, and not just for Matt Kemp.

    And I don’t care about who he likes or dislikes. It he’s not driven by self-motivation, nothing else matters.

  2. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    First word, last sentence in my comments above: “IF”, not “IT”.

  3. AnewBlueDay/Roger Dodger says:

    Boys and their toys and learning responsibility takes longer for some than others.

    I have just been watching the Ken Burns’ 10th Innings. Finished the first one, and half way through the second night.

    Not much about the Dodgers so far, I think a bit about Bulldog and his pitching streak. Then, not much else for the past 20 seasons.

  4. Bobby says:

    still too talented for me to just want to trade him. if next year is EXACTLY like this year, then yes.

    but guys rebound ALL the time. guys have bad years ALL the time.

    unless we get david wright for him i wanna keep him

  5. lawdog says:

    Walt Whitman said it best: “What you do speaks so loudly I can’t hear a word that you say.”

  6. Badger says:

    40 home runs?

    I’ll take the under on that one.

  7. lawdog says:

    I think Kemp’s problem was more with Bowa than Mr. Bigelow Teaman. Torre was mailing it in from Never-Never Land all season. He probably doesn’t even know Kemp’s first name.

  8. Bobby says:

    torre was more worried bout where to bat jeter and arod than he was our lineup

  9. Dalton says:

    Stands back from the keyboard in azmaeenmt! Thanks!

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