Categorized | Mark Timmons

Report From the Ravine

 Chavez Ravine, Dodgertown, California – On a slightly chilly night (well not really), when lots of Dodger fans showed up disguised as empty seats, with only 26,376 fans visible (maybe less), the Dodgers   It’s a shame that the best team in the NL can’t PBIS (put butts in seats).  As usual, it required a lot of hits to yield a few runs.  15 hits = 7 runs! I’ll take it, but it should be better.  For example, teh Astros scored 12 runs on 12 hits.  This is something the Dodgers HAVE to improve upon.

  • The bottom of the Dodger lineup really got the job done tonight.  Loney, Uribe and AJ Ellis all had 2 or more hits to go with multi-hit games for Dee Gordon, Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier as well.   Ethier had 3 hits and Juan Uribe made a conscious effort to go the other way at least three times, and was the Star-Of-The-Game with 4 Hits, 3 RBI and 2 Runs.  He raised his battiung average to .286 in the process.
  • The first Dodger out on the field before the game was Andre Ethier… by a long time.  It is obvious that he has a new persona.  Almost a joy about him and I have never seen him hustle to first base like he is this year.  He seems re-focused and resolute, like he’s playing for the love of the game, like he’s proud to be a Dodger… or maybe he’s just playing for a new contract?
  • Chris Capuano seemed “geeked” in the dugout before the game, and in fact was hitting 90 MPH in the first inning tonight.  After the first inning, he was seldom above 88 MPH.  He threw 108 pitches and flirted with disaster, but pitched out of trouble and logged 7 innings.  I’ll take that for a 5th starter anytime.
  • For the record, Dee Gordon is one of the most polite, least assuming and humble young men I have met in his position.  He is a sponge, seeking advice from coaches, players and legends of the game.  Don’t worry about his attitude – he’s a peach!  He’s also a kid, but that’s cool.  This guy doesn’t have an attitude at all (unless “good” counts as an attitude).  He’s the kind of son-in-law you’d love to have.
  • I can’t fault Matt Kemp for making an out at the plate when Andre Ethier singled in the bottom of the 5th.  The outfielder was a little lackadaisical in throwing the ball back and Matt just kept on going, knowing it would take a perfect throw to get him.  The Braves got that throw and Matt was out.  Andre was doubled off first.  I do blame him for that.
  • Scott Elbert even pitched like he might know how.  Hopefully, that will give him some confidence.

Jared Massey’s Minor League Report – April 23, 2012

About Mark Timmons

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

9 Responses to “Report From the Ravine”

  1. JOSEPH OLIVAS says:

    GREAT GAME!

  2. Pete Matthews says:

    O.K. Can we start the speculation on who Ned goes out and gets for OF help and punch off the bench before the deadline??

  3. Buck Dodgers says:

    Despite what others have mentioned, the McCourt-factor with his continuing piece of the Dodgers has left Dodgers fans cold. Under normal conditions, if you have a first place team, playing early in a season, playing exciting baseball, you’d have a stadium packed with fans, game after game. The McCourt-factor won’t allow that to happen. That stank that was left by McCourt will continue to permeate until playoff time, Dodgers make the playoffs and some of that stank is washed away and fans return.

    I am glad to see fans finally stand up and protest that they don’t like what has happened. For years, people have complained that the fans need to show their displeasure by not attending games, now it has finally happened. It took some doing for the fans to finally get that pissed, now it is going to take some doing to erase that emotion and get the fans to return. Here, Here to the real Dodgers fans!

    • Huh? says:

      You call them real fans, I call them fairweather fans. LA is full of em. But I don’t care, cheap seats for the rest of us!

    • Mark_Timmons says:

      You can\’t wash the stink away. Frank McCourt still is half-owner of all the land around the Stadium. Ho can you forget that?

      On trades:

      I think that the Dodgers will see where they need help before they do anything. It could be 1B, 3B or LF, even SS or C. I have no clue where he might look.

  4. Buck Dodgers says:

    Exactly!

    Huh? Can’t have it both ways. Fans were accused of not being “real fans” if they came and supported McCourt and his actions. Some said if you went to the park you were not a “real fan”. People (fans) vote with their dollars, it makes the world go round, it really is the only option people have to influence anything. Have you ever considered that the fans that stayed home last season, were the “real fans”, without their pressure McCourt would have fought and fought for years to keep his grip on the Dodgers. The “real fans” are the ones who sacrificed their long-time support and enjoyment in going to the games, many of those “real fans” going against decades of support and money they had given the team.

    Possibly you are actually the “fair weather fan”, going to the park now that the “real fans” made their protests known and caused the prices to come down, hmmmm!. Something to consider, if we are talking about “real fans”, that is.

  5. Bill Russell says:

    I hope you are enjoying sunny Southern California Mark. It’s going to rain tomorrow per the forecast I just watched.

    Ned is damn lucky that the Dodgers are playing great during the administration changeover. I’m not sure if you can credit him for that or not. He called out Kemp a while back. That’s a discussion for a whole other time. Gotta fly…………..

  6. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I’ve never met Dee Gordon, but from interviews I’ve seen, things I’ve read, and from the general demeanor I’ve observed from a distance, I am in absolute agreement with your characterization of him. Really seems to be a respectful, down to earth kid.

    Chris Capuano has walked 11 in 23 innings pitched this year. That’s more than 4 walks per 9. Over his career, Capuano has walked 325 in 986 innings. That’s just under 3 walks per 9. It’s pretty clear that he’s suffering from control problems early in the season. Assuming he gets that straightened out, I would expect him to be a productive member of the rotation, especially out of the 5 spot.

    Was nice to see Uribe take the ball to the opposite field yesterday. But I won’t be swayed by a single good game. If anything, his production yesterday serves as further proof that the Dodger offense would benefit greatly from the addition of a productive bat at 3B. Maybe he can play well enough to garner interest from another team in search of a third baseman, and that the Dodgers can accomodate them by picking up a significant piece of his remaining contract.

    I agree that the Dodgers will seek out help wherever they perceive it’s needed. And I’m sure power will be a consideration, since that’s a means of scoring with less hits.

    For the most part I don’t fault Kemp. He’s been successful in the past with his aggressiveness. However, I do think it might have been a good idea for him to consider that he was going to be on third base with nobody out. Ethier appeared to be the victim of his own mis-judgment.

    I’ve also noticed Ethier running harder this year. And I don’t know if it’s just my imagination, but he actually seems faster, both on the bases and in the field. Maybe the combination of getting his knee fixed and the hard work he had to put in during his rehab helps to explain it all.

    Maybe the fans are upset that McCourt owns half the parking lots, and will continue to stay away all year. Or perhaps, maybe some fans are staying away as long as McCourt owns the team, and is the recipient of their dollars.

    I suspect that the finalization of the sale within the coming week will bring back a significant number of fans, if not all of them. However, if this team fields a winner, the fans will almost certainly come back.

  7. Roger Dodger says:

    This report is a couple of days late – just getting back from out of town a few minutes ago (Tuesday afternoon):

    I was at the last 2 games in Houston (Sat & Sun). Being at the game live, is much different than watching it on TV. Live, you see action around you, but not across the field and what the broadcasters tell you.

    Sat. night, first row of the Crawford Boxes (left field). Many Dodger fans there. The guys were on their “A” game all night long.

    Kershaw warmed up, at first, right below us in left field. Throwing about 90 feet or so, hard. Then after stretching out his arm — he went into the bullpen area to work on his pitches.

    I will not rehash the game, you saw it, or read about it.

    Gordon looked great at the plate; but was thrown out at the 2nd. Not sure what was going on there. Is he getting average to poor leads and starts? But all that speed and a bullet throw and he is out.

    Loney’s shot to right field was eye-popping to say the least. Several local fans told me, of course, that he went to High School in the Houston area.

    Kemp’s shot was a real blast. The ball must have really hurt.

    It was a close game all night, and having Kershaw pitching so well made the difference.

    Sunday – we sat 1st row down the left field line. Got some great pictures of Matt warming up with a training coach. Also, had my copy of my book: “Spring Training, Vero Beach – 2006 – 2008,” (100 color photos that I took during those years) and had Matt sign the page where I had his first HR as a Dodger in any Spring Training game. He looked at it, smiled, and said great shot. Note: back then, in Florida, Mark and I met his father Carl that night in the stands. We talked for about an hour during batting and fielding practice. As they ended, he called Matt over to the side, introduced us to him, and Matt signed a baseball.

    That game in Florida, Matt hit his first HR, and I got a great shot of his swinging and lift-off. Moments later, I went around the stands to get something to drink, and his father, Carl, was walking there — called me over and said look — his cell phone — Logan White had just sent him a text message: “Bam!!!”

    Back to this past Sunday. I learned years ago, from Howard Cosell, when you play players out of position, a mistake will find them. Sure enough, Rivera at first base. He gets the little ground ball, starts to go to the bag, then in the last second tosses to Billingsley, and the toss is low, play missed up. Loney would have made that play right. Rivera can play first base, Rivera can stand around first base, but Rivera is not a first-baseman, period.

    Lee hit that HR so hard, so fast off Billingsley, my head snapped from watching it go over my head to deep left field. What a blast. I have the feeling that Billingsley was still fuming in his mind over Rivera’s bad toss.

    The only positive thing that game was Ellis at 2nd base. Oh, and Elbert in relief. He looked good.

    Had some great talking time with Dodger and Astro fans before and during the game.

    As far as the other three Dodger pitchers looked, they were not on their game at all.

    Matt crushed a deep ball to right center, but caught at the last minute. Also, on the ball that Kemp misplayed in center field. It was Billingsley’s fault. The ball must have been in the middle of the plate, hit really on the button — and a line shot. Matt broke in a step or two, then realized just how hard it was it, went back, leaped up, but it was still going up –

    Mark, Ethier was one of the first on the field on Sunday, did some running, stretching, and then went over to the stands and signed for fans for a long time.

    Dee Gordon also went out early and signed for fans, for a long time.

    Oh, if any of you are interested in a copy of my book on the Vero Beach years (mentioned above), 100 pictures on 45 pages, hardback — will sell it at cost from the printer, let me know. This is a private printing, on demand (9 by 11, size). Mark sent 2 copies to the Dodgers front office last year.

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