Categorized | Mark Timmons

The Sky is Not Falling

This time last year, the Dodgers were 16-20 in 4th place and the fans were moaning and groaning.  Now the Dodgers are 20-11, in first place in the NL West with the 2nd best record in all of baseball and the fans are moaning and groaning.   What the…?   Look, there is no perfect team.  The Angels are a train-wreck with their “leader” Albert Pujols hitting .198 with 1 HR and 11 RBI.   Most people say “he will turn it around.”  James Loney is hitting.211, why can’t he turn it around too?  His career batting average is .285 – not bad.  He’s not a slugger, but why do we have to have him dead and buried and not Pujols?  The Dodgers don’t need James Loney to be Albert Pujols – they just need him to put up his average year.  Slumps happen to the best in the business.  Give James a break.  Here’s what his batting averages have been since he broke in:

  • 2006 – .284
  • 2007 – .331
  • 2008 – .289
  • 2009 – .281
  • 2010 – .267
  • 2011 – .288

James needs to hit his way out of this slump and I think Mattingly just needs to play him as much as possible.  The same with Uribe.  The Dodgers just need and “average” year from him.  A large portion of the Dodgers success is a very tight infield defense.  Uribe and Loney are a big part of that.

THE DODGERS HAVE THE SECOND BEST RECORD IN ALL OF BASEBALL.  Why are we whining instead of enjoying it?  Sands, Van Slyke, Castellanos and some pitchers will be ready soon.  SVS is getting a shot now.  It sounds like Rivera will be out for a while so this is Scott’s opportunity.

Notes & News:

  • Bobby Abreu has been EXACTLY what the Doctor ordered.   So much for the Garrett Anderson comparisons.
  • C-Bill is like a see-saw!  Up and down.  He was pissed Mattingly took him out last night, but it proved to be the right decision.
  • Where should AJ Ellis hit?  He’s doing great at #8.
  • Matt Kemp is hitting a mere .385 – he’s now in the “superman zone.”  No longer God of the diamond!
  • The LA Time and TJ Slimers are laying the wood to Magic Johnsonand Guggenheim Partners.  I’ll write about that later, but it’s getting ugly.
  • Allen Webster is in danger of being sent back to A – Ball, after being shelled again last night.
  • Jerry Sands is heating up.
  • Jared Massey’s Minor League Report – 5/09/12

About Mark Timmons

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

21 Responses to “The Sky is Not Falling”

  1. the truth hurts says:

    Albert Pujols WILL turn it around

    James Loney WILL NOT turn it around

    I moan and groan because this team gives me a false sense of security. If we remain with this lineup for the remainder of the season, we will not finish with the second best record in all of baseball. Probably not even in the top 10.

    But don’t get me wrong, I enjoy this.

    I also enjoy hot buffalo wings before they give me the fire shits the next day…

  2. Roger Dodger says:

    Mark is printing post-season tickets now. Of course, he is the Dodger rah-rah Dodger-Fan-In-Chief.

    The guys were off to a great start.

    Now, some of those aging players on the roster are hurt and either are limited in playing time or on the DL. So we will see more of the call-ups.

    The schedule was about as soft as it could have been for the month of April. And the Dodgers made the most of it.

    Now the pace quickens.

    The Giants look terrible. They look worse than the Dodgers. But so do a lot of teams — that is, not performing well.

    The dust will settle by the end of May with just who is in and who is out.

    Question: will Dee Gordon have more SBs or Errors by the end of the season?

    12 SBs so far and 9 errors to date. The next Dodger with errors is Uribe with 3.

    In fact, Dee Gordon, all by himself, leads the entire major leagues in errors.

    Gordon is tied for 72nd place in making the double-play.

    Oh yes, he is tied for Caught Stealing with 5. But I have seen most of those and he was safe at least 2 or 3 of the outs called.

    • Mark_Timmons says:

      Roger,

      Let\’s not forget that the Dodgers were on of the Top 5 teams in baseball the last half of 2011 – This is just more of the same.

      Dee Gordon will rise to the TOP – I am not surprised he is struggling right now. He will get it right, but he will have 30+ errors.

  3. Mike Dixon says:

    Comparing Loney to Pujols is laughable…..Pujols is a career .326 hitter and has 446 HR…He started of slow last year and turned it around, so people expect him to do so again this year…how much longer should we wait on Loney?….teams expect more than a .280 avg and 10 HR from the first baseman….the guy is garbage….looks like a complete sissy in the batters box…the epitome of soft….Abreu at first and Van Slyke in Left…

    • Mark_Timmons says:

      Mike, you have trouble with the English language, don’t you?

      I said: “The Dodgers don’t need James Loney to be Albert Pujols – they just need him to put up his average year.”

      Nowhere did I compare Loney to Pujols, except for their current batting averages. Pujols needs to raise his BA about 140 points to have his “average season.” Loney only needs to raise his about 60-70 points.

      I’ll take a Loney at 1B who hits .280, not .210. I’d like to have a better 1B, but .280 is better than .210.

      Abreu at 1B? He has NEVER played the position. I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Van Slyke has experience there, but he isn’t very good. He needs some help.

      • Mike Dixon says:

        You said if Pujols can turn it around why can’t Loney…because Pujols has done it before….Loney came alive towards the end of the season last year…should we wait till then?…..

        and I meant Abreu in Left and SVS at first base….another bat is more of a priority than a guy who plays great defense….

  4. Corey says:

    Albert can turn it around, why can’t James. Because they aren’t comparable. Albert has a very impressive past history. Loney has a very mediocre, barely a serviceable MLB 1bmaseman history. Although I will give you he has an above average glove over there.

    • Mark_Timmons says:

      Corey, again I do not compare them. James just needs to hit what his career average is – .280, not .210. Albert was a .330 hitter. Not sure if he is capable of that anymore, but Loney can’t carry his jock unless Albert has just suddenly lost it.

      If James hits .210, the Dodgers can’t continue to play him anymore than if Pujols continues to hit .198.

  5. Jae says:

    Mark,

    Why is it these guys can’t read? You never compared Loney to Pujols. I understood it perfectly. Geeezzzzz…..

  6. Bobbie17 says:

    VanSlyke has to play somewhere. He might just be good. It is his turn to try to be
    a big leaguer. If that means sitting Loney or Abreu or……., so be it.

  7. Bill Russell says:

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Abreu start taking some grounders at 1st. I would love to see his bat in the lineup more often. He wouldn’t be a bad option if James don’t pick it up soon. James is great defensively but for the last 3 years we have all been wondering when James is going to turn it around offensively. Are we just proud parents that can’t view Mr Loney objectively? I’m starting to think it’s about time for a change.

    It was nice seeing Van Slyke hit the ground running. He does look a little like pops, now let’s just hope his play reminds us of Andy. That’s all for now.

  8. dogleg says:

    Mark what was Loney’s RBI totals? It does not matter how many
    HR you hit if they are all solo’s. Base hits when men are in
    scoreing positions should count for something

  9. RogerCraig says:

    From 2008 to 2010, James Loney had 90, 90 and 88 RBI’s.

  10. DRomo says:

    Van Slyke looks fat. Thats my opinion. The boy has hadded a few LBS since his days playing in A ball when I saw him. But heck if he can hit its fine by me!

    Loney may or may not turn it around. I had a boss whose mantra was “You will be tolerated until you can be replaced” James will be given every opportunity to turn it around but if the opportuniy arrises to upgrade we have to move.

    I have some faith he will heat up and match his career average. He’s a doubles hitter. I am fine with that….for now.

  11. Bobby says:

    Shawn Tolleson has been promoted to AAA.

    I’m guessing he’s here by June?

  12. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    An “average” year for Uribe is a .253 AVG, .298 OBP, .421 SLG, .719 OPS. Also, except for his .289 in 2009 (clearly an aberration), Uribe has not hit above .252 since he did that in 2005. His averages have been as follows:

    2005 = .252
    2006 = .235
    2007 = .234
    2008 = .247
    2009 = .289
    2010 = .248
    2011 = .205
    2012 = .247 (to date)

    Mark, maybe you’d be satisfied with that, but not me. And I suspect not too many Dodger fans. Jerry Hairston is a nice utility guy, but not a starting 3B. But I’d rather he started instead of Uribe. As I pointed out earlier, third base is a run producing position, and Uribe is not a run producer. Watch him hit. He’s forever jumping at pitches and stepping in the bucket. Not too many managers would have their starting third baseman bunting with runners on first and second and no outs like the Dodgers did with Uribe the other night. That tells me that his manager has no confidence in him, and would love to find a permanent replacement. If this new ownership is serious about winning now, I have to believe they’re scouring MLB for a replacement.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/u/uribeju01.shtml

    Loney is simply an enigma. He looks like the doubles machine Romo describes above, but as Romo says, “Loney may or may not turn it around. I had a boss whose mantra was ‘You will be tolerated until you can be replaced’ James will be given every opportunity to turn it around but if the opportuniy arrises to upgrade we have to move.”

    And no truer words were ever spoken than Romo’s last several words, i.e., “…if the opportunity arises to upgrade we have to move.”

    And I don’t think Mark was comparing Loney to Pujols. Like any of us, Mark knows that there is nothing to compare. I don’t know if Pujols will suddenly dome alive, and really, I don’t care. And Loney could suddenly pick it up, but really, in that case too, I don’t care. The Dodgers simply need better at first base, and a player they can have confidence will produce consistently.

    If Van Slyke hits, then I have no problem with him taking Rivera’s job in LF. And I still think Jerry Sands is a candidate for LF or 1B. However, at this stage I can’t see a lineup that includes Gordon, Van Slyke and Sands. Three young players/rookies might be a bit much. But if no one else can be acquired, I’d prefer that than having Loney and Uribe in the lineup. And let’s not forget that Loney is still struggling against lefties.

  13. dogleg says:

    Any upgrade will be welcomed but 3rd & lf should be the first
    to be looked at.

  14. Gonzo says:

    Well I am tired of waiting for Loney. He’s been a regular for 4 years now and in my opinion, he is not a fit in LA anymore. Yes his glove will bail out the team sometimes, but how often does his bat put the team against the wall? There are many teams that could use him as a starter and won’t depend on him to be a plus contributer with the bat.
    To me, the Dodgers need to make a trade to give the team a shot in the arm. Although I am not a big fan of his, I believe Beckett is available for the taking and the price won’t be high. Maybe make it a little bit bigger and kick the tires on youklis as well and he can play either corner IF position. Both of these guys had disdain for Bobby V since ST and don’t want to play for him.

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