Categorized | Mark Timmons

Can’t You Just Enjoy the Ride?

In the Spring of 2011, I predicted that the Dodgers would win the NL West – that didn’t happen and since then many fans have really been down on the Dodgers, some even predicting last place finishes in 2011 and 2012.   I have no doubt that some of your judgement was clouded by your immense hatred of Frank McCourt (“If McCourt owns it, it must be crap!”), but the Dodgers woes were very evident the first half of 2011.  Now, we find out that some players wondered if they would even get a paycheck after the Dodgers entered bankruptcy.  We all know that MLB would have never let that happen, but for some of the young players, it evidently was an issue.  There is a certain stigma or shame to some people when they are in bankruptcy, and maybe that Dodger pride was tarnished in the players minds.  Sometime around the All-Star Break, they evidently decided to just play and were one of the best teams in baseball the second half of 2011.

Some of you chose to ignore that and again predicted gloom and doom for the Dodgers in 2012.  Then when they won early, you said they didn’t play anyone.  That was puzzling to me, because the core of the team was essentially the same as last year, and the changes should have been for the better.  But most of you didn’t see it this way.  Most baseball writers didn’t see it this way.  Most bloggers didn’t see it this way.  Shoot, hardly anyone saw it this way.  Why am I telling you this?  Because the Negative Nellies let me have it.  They have blasted me – I was called a homer, an idiot, delusional and silly.  How do you like me now?  I knew this team was capable of winning.  The pitching and defense have been outstanding and team chemistry is at an all-time high.  Of course, now there’s real money available if the Dodgers can made a deal that benefits the team.  However, know this – a deal must make sense and Stan Kasten won’t let them sell the farm.

At any rate, despite a plethora of injuries, the Dodgers are in First Place with the best record in baseball.  We played a very good team this weekend and swept them, with a bunch of Junkyard dogs.  Yesterday, only three of Opening Day’s starters were in the lineup.  That’s the stamp of a good team.  This team is far from perfect – but it was better than most of you thought.  Enjoy the ride – quit waiting for the flame-out.  It ain’t happening.

Dodger News & Notes:

  • Chad Billingsley is maddening…  What else can you say?
  • Kenley Jansen is looking like a closer.  I predicted he would be the closer this year (over Javy), but then I doubted my assessment.  I should have went with my first impression.
  • Van Slykes’ HR was nice, but I have to see more – he knew what was coming on 3-0.
  • Juan Uribes wrist is better and he’s been cleared for baseball activity  – is that good news or bad news?
  • Wow! A few hours more and Mark Ellis could have lost his leg?  I’ll bet he would not be nearly as adept at turning the DP without it.
  • Forgotten man of the Dodger pen:  Scott Elbert!
  • According to Bill Shaikin of The LA Times changes are coming in the Dodger Fan Experience.  Good!
  • Shawn Tolleson is having problems at AAA – his ERA is now 10.38.
  • Nate Eovaldi pitched 5 strong innings last night allowing 0 runs and 3 hits.  His ERA is 3.18.  He’s ready, even though he walks too many.

About Mark Timmons

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

23 Responses to “Can’t You Just Enjoy the Ride?”

  1. Reggie says:

    I didn’t ridicule you but I disagreed with your assessment of the Dodgers. I think you were closer to being right than most others, although there is still 3/4 of the season left. I apologize for my lack of belief in the Blue.

  2. Ken says:

    The scrubs continue to improve
    Last 30 Days
    De Jesus .000 – Only 1 AB
    Sellers 1.72

    8 players hitting above .300 during the last 30 days

    MacDougal 15.43 – DFAd
    Guerra 5.75 (1.23 in May!)
    Bills 5.64

    Even the #4 starter has a 3.03 ERA during the last 30 days!!

    So down to only 2 real scrubs.

    Most of the players are playing smart unselfish team oriented baseball

    #5 Starter and SS are the only current issues!!!!!!!
    The injuries may end up being a long term issue.

    How long can the Dodgers walk this tight rope? How long can they all be CLUTCH?? They are turning into real men!

  3. the truth hurts says:

    Negative nelly alert!!

    Just kidding, this is awesome.

    Go blue!

  4. the truth hurts says:

    Props to Herrera by the way

  5. Bobbie17 says:

    I think “one at a time” is a good philosophy at this point. Also, win the first game of a series. So, tonight, beat the D’backs. Worry about Tuesday tomorrow.

  6. Roger Dodger says:

    Just voted for All Star Team — I think this 25 times one can vote is so ballot stuffing . . . like I voted just once. I am sure some of you clicked 25 times.

    Heck, just turn it back to the players, coaches and staff for placing the BEST players in the game, on the field. And they all have to show up. None of this having 4 or 5 guys cop out.

  7. Bobby says:

    I’m enjoying the ride! It reminds me of the 1988 team that had a bunch of randoms playing well, but with a great pitching staff.

    I”m also not blind to the fact that we can and need to make some big deals. As much as the ride is great now, I don’t expect the entire year to go this well with the players we currently have.

    Either way, it’s a great time now and it should be a great time in the future!

  8. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Why wouldn’t Tolleson have problems in AAA. Sandy Koufax might have trouble pitching in ALBQ. Bet his curve would have hung more. And why do you think Eovaldi is pitching in Chattanooga? Certainly not because the Dodgers don’t think he can handle AAA.

  9. Joe says:

    Don Mattingly and his coaching staff are doing an amazing job…..I loved seeing him high five the players after van slyke homerun. You can tell the players like each other and the like playing for their manager. This team just keeps grinding and pulling in the W. Th Lets go blue and lets keep the parking lots safe….

  10. Joe says:

    I agree with the limit amount of at bats to assess SVS but it would be nice to have a power threat coming off the bench. So is Don Mattingly the early favorite for manager of the year. Of course just 1/4th into the season but he is taking a team not many thought would do much and has them with the best record in baseball even with all the injuries.

  11. jerry says:

    i said it a couple of days ago..Billingly should be the #5 starter..or be trade bait.that what you get when all your weight is in you lower have.his brain is down there also

  12. Anonymous says:

    Who cares who the #5 starter is? Or the #1, 2, 3, or 4 for that matter. People make too big a deal out of that; it’s just a label and they all pretty much the same amount of starts every year.

  13. Roger Dodger says:

    1-5 starters are really most important for the post season. Game 1 — their #1 verses your #1, game 2 — their #2 verses your #2 and so on.

    Sometimes during the season, teams like to feature, these kind of match ups. Rather than their #1 verses your #4.

    Also, status and money are probably involved. #4 starters will not receive #1 or 2 money, unless of earlier bad contracts — like Zito.

  14. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    As it currently lines up, beginning with Kershaw, the Dodgers’ rotation is:

    Kershaw

    Billingsley

    Capuano

    Harang

    Lilly

    That’s not how it started. Changes occur due to days off, and perhaps Kershaw being available for a start that jumps him in the rotation. And there are other factors. As noted above, when the season is over, barring injuries, the starters will have roughly the same number of starts. Kershaw probably some extra because he’s the most likely to be pushed up in the rotation when a day off makes that possible.

    And in the postseason, the rotation is only going to include the top 3 or 4, with the others being pushed to the pen.

    Again, as I’ve noted on numerous occasions, I’d like to see Billingsley coming out of the pen, NOW.

    As for SVS, yes, he got a cookie to hit last night. So really in his limited play he has not yet proven how good or not so good he might be. But certainly, he’s probably earned some more playing time. Yes, there’s no proof that he’s part of the answer to re-building the Dodgers offense, but similarly, there’s no proof that he’s not part of the answer.

    For now I wouldn’t mind seeing a platoon of SVS with Abreu. That way, SVS gets playing time and the opportunity to remain sharp, and Abreu gets the occasional rest than any 38 year old player needs. Because most pitchers are righthanders, Abreu would get the lions share of the playing time. And a platoon of Loney and Sands at first base might also be productive. Loney clearly hasn’t figured out lefthanders to date, and Sands need not waste away on the bench.

    And yes, both of those platoons put SVS and Sands in the lineup at the same time, which is all the more reason why the Dodgers have to acquire an established bat at 3B, and rid themselves of Uribe, who in my mind is the most useless player on the team (yes, even more useless than Adam Kennedy). Of course, all of this could become moot if the Dodgers include one or both of the aforementioned youngsters in a trade.

    And for those of you reluctant to part with top prospects I offer this. If the Dodgers are serious about investing heavily in scouting and player development, then trading prospects becomes less objectionable, given that they will likely to spending money in the international market to acquire lots of new inventory. So unlike some, I would not even be reluctant to include Zach Lee in a deal, as long as it brings us the right piece or pieces.

  15. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    There has been some criticism in the last few years concerning the Dodgers’ medical staff. Now I think, we should be applauding Sue Falsone and her staff for their decision to get Mark Ellis to the hospital.

    http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-0521-dodgers-notes-20120521,0,4541446.story

  16. Ken says:

    7 Scrubs tonight. Can the Dodgers win tonight? Another new hero tonight?

  17. Mike Dixon says:

    Bills, Lee and Pederson for 5 months of Hamels?…..I don’t even know what to say….

  18. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    “Bills, Lee and Pederson for Hamels?”

    Of course, it’s not likely being discussed. But if it could happen, it’s something to think about. It would give the Dodgers the inside track on signing Hamels in the offseason, and might be worth the gamble, since it would be a big piece to add if the objective is to go all out for a championship. It even relieves the Dodgers of Billingsley’s contract.

    With Dodgers in a strong financial position that might enable them to sign Hamels long term, and with their ability to replenish the farm system, this is a deal, if it could actually come to fruition, that would be seriously worth considering.

    Of course, if the Dodgers could make this deal, I wouldn’t stop there. They still need to fill at least 3B, and maybe more on the offense.

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