Even Ray Charles can see this one.  The Dodgers don’t have a centerfielder and they certainly need one.

Before going outside the organization, why not call up Joc Pederson and see if he can be the guy.  Maybe he can… maybe he can’t.  Just do it!  Don’t think about it – DO IT!  I doubt that there’s much of a market for Crawford and Ethier… even if the Dodgers foot 75% of their salaries – that’s how far they have fallen.  Maybe the Dodgers should just DL Hanley and Andre and bring up Joc and someone else.

Hanley needs to go on the shelf for a while – he’s a wreck!

Ned needs to figure this stuff out soon because the Dodgers lineup is a mess right now.

For the record, I have never been a huge Pederson fan.  I mean, he’s a good kid – I just think he’s a 4th outfielder at best… but I hope I am wrong and the Dodgers need to try him.  That is, unless they think the same thing and want to tantalize teams with his “potential” in AAA.  Who knows?

But, I know this: Joc needs to STRAP it on.  Crawford and Ethier both wear DEPENDS!

Dodger Notes:

  • Who is going to start today?  Stephen Fife could pitch on 4 days rest today if recalled.  He went six on Tuesday and pitched pretty well.  The Dodgers probably won’t do it on 4 days rest though…
  • Alex Guerrero went 2-3 with a BB as he DH’ed for the Arizona Dodgers.
  • Rubby De La Rosa is 2-2 with a 2.89 ERA for Boston.  He has a WHIP of 1.04
  • Allen Webster is 4-4 with a 2.85 ERA at AAA Pawtucket.  He has logged 111 innings and averages 6 innings a start.
  • Would you trade Beckett, Crawford and Gonzalez for them?  I would.  The Dodgers have plenty of outfielders and could move Hanley to 1B, saving a few hundred million.  Chumps!
  • How about this (Strongly Right-Handed) lineup?
  1. Gordon  2B
  2. Ramirez  1B
  3. Puig  RF
  4. Kemp  LF
  5. Pederson  CF
  6. Uribe  3B
  7. Ellis  C
  8. Arrrr  SS (I can’t spell Arruebarrena)

Dan Rubenstein argues that Clayton Kershaw is already and All-Time Great.  If you disagree, do what he says at the end!

  1. the truth hurts says:

    Mark, out of the 10 plus years that I have been reading your blog, this has got to be the best headline yet, even Ray Charles can see that.

    CF is surely a mess, I agree to give JOCP his fair shot, after the all star break.

    Haren starts are painful to watch, Maholms might be more painful though, god help us all.

  2. Pete M says:

    God must be helping us, because were in a dead heat for 1st place. Assuming that Joc P. is an intelligent young man and only delves into informative and cutting edge blogs like LADT, we should ask God to divert some of his help to him, maybe a skosh in the k rate…

      • Badger says:

        I’m for giving Joc his shot. That position is begging for an upgrade.

        Becket Crawford and Gonzalez for who? de la Rosa and Webster? No. If this current group doesn’t get it done this year, then trade them all as far as I’m concerned.

        Kershaw IS an All Time great. If, like Koufax he were to walk away today he would be in the discussion and certainly on the list. I don’t see anyone arguing that. But this began with you saying by the time he is done he will surpass Koufax, which shows a total disregard for stats. As has been pointed out by many on this site, Koufax did things Kershaw WILL NEVER DO!! It isn’t possible. The shutouts, the no hitters, 300+ strike outs 3 times including 382 once, the complete games, 25+ wins 3 times – hell Koufax even has 9 saves!

        I just hope Kershaw is still around at the end of his contract.

  3. bobbie17 says:

    Pederson is next year’s problem. This year, it’s the pitching. Truly a mess. Haren said last night that he felt good. Oh well. That’s about all we will get out of him. If ownership is serious about winning now, it makes the deal for Price. This staff will never make it to the playoffs the way it is now. You cannot really expect too much more from Beckett. Ryu is off. A two man rotation, even though those two are great/good, will not be enough. We should be padding the lead right now, but instead, with this rotation, we are staying even. Don’t expect the Giants to lose forever. If they put on half the show they did the first part of this season, we are done. Forget Maholm today. We’ve seen what he has. Any well rested minor leaguer would be better.

    • Badger says:

      Patterson or Fife would likely get lit up even by the Padres. We don’t have any good minor league options. We traded them away and Lee has turned into a nibbler. Maybe it will work for him, but frankly I’m finding him to be a disappointment.

      We need to out hit the lowly Padres. They are a terrible offensive team and we are at home! We should be scoring 6 a game and keeping them to 3 or less.

      The midgets will make a move. Don’t be surprised to see a guy like Zobrist, or even Utley, show up there. They do stuff like that, and it works, every year. And if Lincecum has found his mojo they will indeed have a decent second half.

      We have the horses to do this, but not if Ramirez is hurt, Kemp is a singles hitter and striking out night after night, and Gonzalez hits .250. We need those guys to do what they are paid to do and if they don’t, we are in trouble.

      The Rays will play it smart, it’s how they stay in business. They will hold onto Price until some team buckles.

  4. Roger Dodger says:

    I too went to be early last night (CST) when it looked like the Dodgers were cooked. Had the DVR on and watched the final 3 innings this morning.

    Pretty sad when a team has to pinch it for the catcher with using AJ Ellis.

    Badger and others — agree, this team on the field the Dodgers have even has a hard time winning when it does win. Only because the Giants have been so bad the past several weeks, have the Dodgers moved up in the standings. Other wise the guys would still be 8 or 9 games back and really dead.

    Why is AGon still hitting 4th or so when he plays?

    • Campy says:

      AGon has 60 RBI that’s just behind Stanton 63 and Goldschmidt at 61. Otherwise it is Puig at 51 and Hanley at 48. It may seem like he doesn’t ever drive runners in, but that is a false perception. His batting average is bad, compared to his lifetime averages, but his RBI are really good. That’s why he is still hitting 4th.

  5. Blake Estes says:

    Everyone is complaining about this team but they are tied for the most wins in the NL. Just wait till they get it going and make a move or two. I predict this team wins the west by the same margin as last year. Bunch of negative nancies in here. And no way I would make that trade mark. This is a good team. I do agree we need a center fielder. Y not put Puig in center, kemp in right and platoon ethier, Crawford and van slyke.

    • Campy says:

      If the CF is playing tentativly now because of the wild horse coming at him for every fly in right center, can you imagine what it would be like if we had a RF & LF who were afraid for their lives every time there was a fly hit in a gap?

      • Badger says:

        Negative nancies? Come on Blake. Where you been?

        Puig in center was suggested weeks ago but the way. It’s been talked about on other blogs too. The general consensus is – don’t mess with an All Star corner outfielder.

        Check the splits Campy

        http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/split.cgi?id=gonzaad01&year=2014&t=b

        What do you see? Men on and RISP is decent. 127 PA’s is a sizable number. In W’s and L’s – big difference. With 2 outs he’s batting .217. 2 out, w runners on 1&2, .125. Late and close and 2 out I would love to see improvement. (.205 .240) On this team he will have A LOT of opportunities to drive in runs. Hit .300 late and close and with 2 outs and he earns his paycheck. That’s of course my opinion.

        • Campy says:

          I agree that AGon is not hitting well this year and IF we had someone else who could do better they should be in the 4th slot. It just that it appears the brain trust doesn’t think that they have anyone more dependable to stick in that spot. No one seems to be driving in runs the way they should yet at this point in the season we have three guys who have an outside chance to drive in 100, two with a good shot and AGon should get there. It is frustrating, as it was last night, to have us get runners on 2nd and 3rd with no outs and we can’t even get a ground ball to the infield that could get a runner home. Two srikeouts when a ball put in play had a good chance to score a run. I know that Donnie has said he doesn’t think Puig is an RBI man, even though he has changed his tune a little lately. I don’t think Puig is a #2 hitter so perhaps he could be tried in the 4 slot. We don’t have a #2 to protect Gordon. Remember how Jim G used to protect Wills, even taking a strike to allow him to seal, or fouling off a bad pitch when Wills didn’t have a good jump? Where are those kinds of guys today?

  6. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Allen Webster and RDLR, are prospects for sure, and to a certain degree, suspects. Even when he was in the Dodgers organization I thought Webster was over-hyped. But I did love RDLR. So what have they done since? Webster bombed in his short stay in Boston, but that could change with experience. Or, maybe he’s the over-hyped guy I thought he was. No way I trade established big league players for him in the middle of the season. If I was convinced he could be good (and I’m not), I might consider such a deal in the off-season. Same goes for RDLR. I haven’t seen him since he left the Dodgers, but his minor league record since then is nothing to write home about, and I’m not going to get excited because he’s done well in 37 big league innings this year, after getting knocked around in 15 innings last year. He has potential, but we’ve all seen what can happen to potential. Although the light could suddenly go on for either or both of these guys, that’s not an experiment I want to conduct in the middle of a tight pennant race.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/w/webstal01.shtml

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=delaro001rub

    Would I trade Beckett, Crawford and Gonzalez for them? Yeah, maybe in the offseason. Not now. Agon isn’t tearing it up right now, but we saw that he was still capable early this season, and there’s no reason to believe that he’s suddenly lost it. All hitters go through dry spells. Maybe that’s all it is with him. If he’s suddenly lost it, who do we have now to take his place? SVS? But then you lose your 4th outfielder, and probably some offense at 1B, and definitely some defense at 1B, where Agon still saves errors for our infielders. Hanley at 1B? And what makes you think he’s going to remain healthy all year? And why do you assume he can play the position capably. First base is often taken for granted, but again, think of how many errors Agon saves our infielders, and think about the confidence level of those infielders if they’re throwing to Hanley instead of Agon. No question that our overall infield defense would suffer.

    I think you’re just as obsessed with the Boston deal from last year as you are with the Koufax/Kershaw thing. Fact is, the Boston deal didn’t put the Dodgers into a financial straight jacket, and, in fact, was instrumental in getting them as far as the NLCS. And if Kemp had been healthy, or Hanley hadn’t been hit in the ribs, the Dodgers may well have won it all last year. And by the way, how does the Red Sox Way, and the Cardinal Way, look this year? The Red Sox were lucky to beat the Tigers in the ALCS last year (Miguel Cabrera was essentially absent from the Tigers’ lineup with his abdominal injury), and the Cardinals squeaked by against the Hanley-less Dodgers in some very close games, where he likely would have made a huge difference.

    I saw that Dan Rubinstein video yesterday, and knew you would jump all over it (which means you’re predictable). Who the hell is Dan Rubinstein? And yes, he did say that Kershaw was an all-time great, but I don’t recall him saying that he was greater than Koufax. And if he did, and I don’t remember, I really don’t care. Because like I said, who the hell is he, and why would I consider him to be an authority on the subject? And I agree, why don’t YOOOOOOOOOO just “shut-up”. Kershaw IS GOING TO BE an all-time great (barring injury), which I’ve acknowledged before. And if that curveball that he shows Kershaw throwing was “art” (and it was), then so was a Koufax curveball, a Dwight Gooden curveball, and if I recall correctly, a Camilo Pasqual curveball, and a Bert Blyleven. And I’m sure there were others (Don Sutton comes to mind).

    Joc Pederson, by all means if the Dodgers think he’s ready. And although I wouldn’t let it stop me if I thought he was ready and was making the decisions, it could be that the Dodgers are reluctant to recall Pederson because he’s not on the 40-man roster. And also, they’re not likely to call up Pederson until there’s a clear path for him to play everyday, or most of the time in a platoon. And that could depend on another deal or deals getting done.

    And as for the Dodgers making any deals, I think patience is in order. No guarantee that they’ll do anything, but I suspect they will. How much will they do? That depends on the prices being asked. And rest assured, there’s a lot of competition out there, and the prices could be high. And if the Dodgers are planning multiple moves, then the price in prospects and/or current players on the team, could add up.

    And I wish people would stop talking about how the Dodgers catching up with the midgets is due to the midgets playing poorly. How in the world do you think the midgets built up their lead in the first place? Didn’t that have something to do with the Dodgers playing poorly early on? And do we forget that the baseball season is a marathon, and that every team is bound to have peaks and valleys. Why does it matter at what point in the season it occurs. Early, middle, late. They’re all part of the same season. If the midgets are unable to sustain there early season success over the full 162, then, just like the Dodgers, they will have to be judged on the entire season, not just parts of it.

  7. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    And let me add this. Could it be that Joc Pederson is not being called up now because he’s being included in trade discussions, and the Dodgers don’t want to do anything that would jeopardize a potential deal? And maybe they won’t consider bringing up Pederson until they’re convinced that they can’t solve their CF problem in a deal.

    • Badger says:

      Good point Brooklyn. If the Dodgers are smart they are trying to get a deal done early and you know everyone wants our 3 top prospects. Joc is in that group.

      I keep waiting for the middle of our order to get ugly with it Campy but they are misunderstanding what I mean by that. They need to hit as a group and it just hasn’t happened. Still time of course, but if it hasn’t happened by the end of the year, dump ‘em all.

      • Blake Estes says:

        I no badger. I try looking on this site all the time but the new format mark has doesn’t work well on I phones. At least mine. Sometimes I can’t even read the posts. It puts them to the far right and cuts out most of the post. Anyone else have this problem. I used to be Bball on the old site. It wouldn’t let me use that username. Said it was already taken. Not knocking the new format but it just doesn’t work well with me.

        • Badger says:

          The same thing happens on mine but straightens out when I turn the phone horizontal. Don’t be a stranger. Get in here and give us some grief. Even if it’s brief grief.

  8. BOB says:

    And it is time for Ned to strap it on because nobody in Dodger player development can develop any of the bonus babies. And it is time for Logan White and De Jon Watson to just leave. I hope they take their has been laurels with them to San Diego.

    Starting Maholm after a month in the bullpen and after using 4 relievers yesterday is just plain stupid. No, it is RETARDED. Bring up any starting pitcher who is on the 40 man roster and Maholm can relieve them when that rookie gets bombed. Bring up Patterson, Magill or Fife. Oh wait, is that all that the player development department has left? Or add Lee or Reed to the 40 man roster and bring them up. They were drafted in 2010 and 2011 as first round picks. Other teams can draft, develop, and promote first round picks in that amount of time.

    Too many overpaid, has been players, and too few real pitching prospects EXCEPT FOR MORE STINKING RELIEF PITCHERS.

    Yet despite all of the issues still tied for 3rd in MLB for most wins and currently tied for the best record in the NL.

    Go D-Backs. For just a few more days.

      • BOB says:

        Too many big $$ contracts eventually kill a team.. Look at the Ponders, thank you Kobe Bryant, look at the Sheep, thank you with Kurt Warner, etc.

        Angels rumored to be going after Price? Thought they had no prospects left. 2 50s ratings in their Top 10. How many 50s rated players would you have to trade for Price? 5?

        I think that there will be less trades than normal this July. We will see.

  9. Roger Dodger says:

    Have no fear. Ned is here. And he does have a game plan. I think . . . for that is his job.

    It is not his fault that Hanley is made of glass and breaks a lot.

    It is not his fault that Crawford is . . . hurt a lot.

    It is not his fault that Ethier and AGon are shadows of themselves when it comes time for timely hits.

    It is not his fault that some of the veteran pitchers he signed and over the hill.

    Maybe Ned should try and trade managers with the Padres. Bud Black is a good guy.

  10. Badger says:

    It’s NOT the big contracts killing this team. They make money. Why is that so hard to understand? As Clinton said – “it’s arithmetic”. They can afford to give as much cash as the league allows to the Rays along with prospects and just BUY Price. Kobe’s contract hurts the Lakers because of the salary cap. Same thing in football. MLB doesn’t have a hard cap. Clearly the Dodgers don’t give a rats ass about the luxury tax.

    I fully agree that player development could be better. I haven’t been a fan of White and have said so in the past. His drafting record just isn’t that good. Every year it’s the same thing. Pederson looks like the real deal. Seager looks like real deal. Anderson, Urias, same thing. But so did Lee. So did LaRoche. So have others. I just don’t trust prospects. I do trust proven pros, but post steroids it is important to get them before 30 – or at least as close to 30 as you can.

    We haven’t lived up to our potential but at the moment we are in first place.

    Ok Jed. Time to put your helmet on and get in the game. You run the most powerful organization in the freakin league. Do something. And it better be good.

  11. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I’m not ready to criticize Dodgers’ player development. Since 2012 we have seen a sudden change in emphasis on player development. The Dodgers are now big players in the international market, a complete turnaround from the McCourt regime. In the draft the Dodgers rarely get to pick players at the top of the heap, and during the McCourt years they never drafted players that were avoided by other teams picking before them due to high contract demands. That’s not possible now, given the slotting system that penalizes teams heavily (including lost picks) for going heavily over slot. I think judgment of the system has to be held in abeyance until we see how the players signed since 2012 develop. Since a very large percentage of those players were probably teenagers when they signed, it’s going to be several years before we see results. Even our top prospect, Corey Seager, drafted in 2012, is probably a couple of years away.

    • Badger says:

      International signings are different. Many if them are proven pros. We’ve been signing international talent a long time and I don’t know our success rage is any better than anyone else’s. Might be now that we are putting some money into scouting.

      According to pitch tracks at MLB this rookie ump is having a bad night. Puig tossed for arguing a strike 3 that was a ball. Stupid move Yassie. He’s a rookie. He will make mistakes for both pitchers. Realize the plate is 4″ bigger and adjust. So now we play without our 2 of our best hitters. Really dumb.

  12. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Badger, I beg to disagree. The international signing period begins each year on July 2nd, and continues until June 15th of the following year. Those signings consist of mostly teenagers (all amateurs). In 2011, McCourt’s last year as owner the Dodgers were ranked 30th out of 30 teams in what they spent on international talent. The only thing that’s changed (probably a disadvantage to the well-heeled Dodgers) is the current slotting system that limits what teams can spend. That system did not apply to Puig, Guerrero, and Arruebarrena. The only international talent that consists of proven pros are the free agents and/or posted players signed out of Japan and Korea, and any country that has professional leagues.

    Looked to me also that Agon’s ball hit the line. I thought the ump missed the call on the previous pitch to Puig also. Puig didn’t appear happy with that call either, and his dissatisfaction may have caused the rookie ump call the next close pitch. But yes, stupid move by Puig. Guess his emotions got the better of him. And while I’m writing this, Vin Scully just pointed out that Puig told the ump, “you’re stupid”. Yasiel, you’re probably right, but you have to keep that stuff to yourself, otherwise you’re stupid too.

    Nice game so far by Maholm. Would be nice if the Dodgers would give him a little support.

  13. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    What is Kemp trying to do? Doesn’t he realize that he can’t run like he used to. And after he walked and Ethier with a 2-0 count, that was just not a good time to run.

    • Badger says:

      I don’t believe Donnie would send him unless it was a hit and run. Ethier took the pitch so, I don’t know.

      I do know without Ramirez we are one bat short. Without Puig we are 2 bats short. Between Ellis, Rojas the pitchers spot there are a lot of outs at bottom of our lineup.

  14. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Bases loaded with Ellis coming up. This is one time that Ellis should be looking for a fat fastball on the first pitch that he can drive to the outfield.

  15. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Well it wasn’t the first pitch, but he got the job done. Even hit it far enough to get Agon home. And let’s not forget Maholm. Don’t think anyone predicted he would do what he did.

  16. Badger says:

    Tip of the hat to Maholm. I know t didn’t expect that. If we are to believe that Jed won’t give up our top prospects, he may be asked to do that a few more times.

    I felt the same thing Brooklyn – AJ, you know you will get a fastball down the middle, be ready and attack it. He actually looked at 2 of them, but he got the job done. And, after pointing out AGon’s late and close futility, it was nice to see that clutch hit.

    Good win. Let’s do it again today and go into the break in first place.

  17. Badger says:

    They are actually having a baseball conversation at MSDD this morning, discussing “the trade”. Sounds similar to some we have had here. There are two polar opposite views on this issue, but I agree with those who say it did not hurt this organization. There were almost 52,000 watching a Padre game last night. Revenue is flowing for this organization and the future is bright.

  18. Badger says:

    Big start for Ryu. Hopefully he can go 7 against the weak hitting Padres. Just pound the strike zone against them and see what happens. He will get the days in between starts he needs after this one.

  19. Roger Dodger says:

    Was last nights win, the first walk-off win this season???

    Has to be a home with the game either tied or Dodgers behind . . . just might be the first one.

  20. Campy says:

    According to SBNation, Crawford is taking some fly balls in CF. He started out there in the minors, but was switched and hasn’t played it much since. We might need a relay man to get the ball from CF to 2nd base. Donnie said, you don’t see many runners thrown out from CF, but you don’t see them scoring from 1st on a single to center either.

  21. bobbie17 says:

    How did Maholm do that? Pleasant surprise. I ate the crow already. AGon won the game. How can he have so many RBI’s with that batting average? Very quiet–too quiet RBI season for him. Today we will see if Ryu is still the same guy before he was hurt awhile ago. His opposing pitcher has been on a role. Should be a low scoring affair, again. Would be nice to have a 2 game lead going into the break. A point made on a game the other day: Many trades are made after July 31 now. That date isn’t the climax it was. So, August/Sept. could still bring new faces.

  22. Badger says:

    Campy, I’ll say the same thing I said in defending Pierre – the key to the outfield throw is getting the ball into the glove of the relay man as quickly as possible. Crawford doesn’t have a strong arm, but he doesn’t need one for that position. He can run. Then he can pick the ball up and get it to Gordon quickly, and then it is the hands of someone with a strong arm. When I was coaching I was able to prove this point to my players in timed relay drills. The key to the out at third and home is the correct practice of the relay. The real cannon is more often found in right field with the outfield assist coming on nailing the first to third runner on a single. The other two positions out there need to work on quickness to the ball, then a quick and accurate throw to the cutoff. Crawford is a veteran, he knows this. I think he will be fine in CF. Not great, but adequate and probably better than Van Slyke and Ethier.

      • Campy says:

        I was being more cynical than anything, sometimes its fun to pick on obvious weaknesses. Donnie’s statement was right. I think you can do with a weaker arm in CF than R or LF. BTW, on a ball hit into the gap in right center the 2nd baseman is the relay man so you are OK.

  23. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I believe August 31st is the end of the waiver trade deadline. And deals may well be made in the period between July 31 – August 31. Remember, the deal we did with the Red Sox was in August 2012.

    In this Eric Stephen article is the quote below. So maybe Seager is close to being moved up to Chattanooga.

    http://www.truebluela.com/2014/7/13/5895249/corey-seager-julio-urias-futures-game-schedule-lineups-tv

    “Among the minor league coaches on the U.S. coaching staff is Double-A Chattanooga hitting coach Shawn Wooten, with whom Seager will be be intimately familiar with very soon.”

    Mike Petriello makes a good case for calling up Pederson, especially since there is roster space available, as well as space that could be made available very easily.

    http://dodgersdigest.com/2014/07/12/the-path-to-joc-pederson/

  24. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Agree with Badger. It would be nice to have a strong armed CF, but it’s not an absolute necessity. There will be the occasional short fly to CF with a runner on third and less than two out where a strong arm could throw out the runner at the plate, or simply keep the runner anchored to 3B. And on some balls in the gaps that Crawford gets to, there will be runners taking taking the extra base. But even Crawford I think, has a stronger arm than that rag that Pierre had. But for now, we need a CF with range who can track down fly balls that Etheir/Van Slyke/Kemp can’t get to. I’m not sure what kind of reads/jumps Crawford would get in CF, but he certainly has the speed. Probably something worth trying (unless Joc gets called up). And by the way, as Mike Petriello points out in that piece I referred to above, Pederson is not going to give us superior defense in CF, just better than we have now. My guess is that in the long run Pederson is best suited to a corner.

    • Badger says:

      Oops. Have to admit I didn’t read that until now Brooklyn. But glad I dd. Mattingly agrees that getting to the ball quickly is key. Can Crawford run down those long fy balls that stay in the park? He HAS to be better than what we’ve seen – doesn’t he? Please say yes……

      And isn’t Pederson the CF of the future? Maybe LF if we actually dump everybody else, including Kemp.

      Pierre was both underrated and overpaid. Nobody worked harder than he did and he kept his mouth shut during a very difficult time. I have a great deal of respect for him.

  25. Watford Dodger says:

    Campy – totally agree with your thoughts on Ryu. Since he came here he has been vulnerable early on, and like you say, if he can get through first couple of innings he is normally ok. So here we are at the All Star break & we are one of the best teams in baseball – and yet there is a feeling of under achievement. We know this team has more to offer, much more. If the big guns hit form together – Hanley, Kemp, Agon, Puig – then we will be ok. Ned has a role to play with a bit of pen tweaking & maybe some bench help. Personally I would like to see an upgrade at catcher. Our starting pitching is stellar – a stud for the post season would be nice but if Beckett keeps performing then I’m cool with him being our 4.

    • Campy says:

      One week we are bragging about having the best starting pitching in all of baseball. The next week, Beckett goes down, Ryu looks like he is pitching batting practice and Haren can’t throw a strike that isn’t already hit. Now we start talking about cracks in the rotation and selling the farm for (a) Price. Then, of all people, Maholm crawls out of the pen and pitches a great game. Now if Ryu comes back with a strong start and Beckett is back after the break we will be great again.

      I can’t remember the last time that I have been so positive and then negative, positive and negative…. about a pitching rotation. I guess with SuperK and Zach on your team you have good pitching no matter what you feel like. Now if we can just get healthy (not sure if Ryu is totally healthy right now) and stay that way our SP will be the best in the majors.

      That means that pitching and 2nd base are set and strong but SS is shakey, Catcher is thin and no threat with the bat and CF is a carousel of slow horses. You have to be strong up the middle and we need to fix at least 1 or 2 of those spots. We can win our division as we are, and perhaps the West, but can we go all the way?

      Which position would you try to strengthen first?

  26. Badger says:

    Mattingly said. “We play in a lower scoring environment now.”

    Yes. Yes you do.

    Off the too of your head, how many of the 6 division leaders are in the top 5 in attendance? Top 10?

  27. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I’m not worried about Ryu. In that Detroit game he was psyched out by the umpire taking away the corners. That’s not happening today, and he’s hitting his spots. Meanwhile, it appears that our hitters (maybe all hitters) are having a problem laying off Tyson Ross’ slider when he throws it outside the strike zone. Looks like a nasty pitch. Probably looks like a fastball coming up to the plate, until it just disappears. Still he had a bit of luck when Rojas lined out. But I guess, that’s baseball.

    • Roger Dodger says:

      But he looks so GOOD up at the plate when he strikes. So serious. So intent. He just is searching for the skill of making contact with pitches.

      For this series with the Padres — boy the Dodgers really hit the snot out of the ball. Base hits, hitting behind the runner, loading up for the post season.

  28. BOB says:

    Congrats to Seager.

    No offense means the Dodgers were lucky to win the series against the lowly, but warming up, Padres. Idea, Ned knew that Maholm would stink up the mound and Ryu just stunk up the mound so he ordered his staff to hire a new group of people to rub up the balls before the games for Maholm and Ryu. Thus both pitchers performed better but the Dodger batters also did worse. Just an idea, both offenses can’t really be this bad.

    Time for some rest and recreation for the team with the best record in the NL. Hoping that they come back ready and willing to beat the Cards, Pirates, giants, and Braves and remain on top of the West on the Trade dealine.

  29. Badger says:

    2 for 12 RISP and obviously one of those hits didn’t score anybody. Gonzalez looked bad, including a dropped ball late and Kemp looked asleep. Rojas and Ellis just flat out can’t hit. Currently there are holes in this lineup. I still believe Ramirez and Gonzalez can hit, and I think Kemp can too, but his power is absent. In fact, the thunder on this team is vacant. Every now and then it feels like it is back, but, then good pitching does this to us. But, a win is a win. Thanks pitching.

    Ryu was terrific and Mattingly wisely took him out 1 inning early. He left after throwing only 92.

    Ok team, get some rest and be ready for a test when you get back.

  30. Campy says:

    Right now there are 7 national league pitchers with 10 or more wins and three of them are Dodgers. That is, if I didn’t overlook any other pitcher beside Ryu who got his 10th today. That is the core of a good pitching staff. Another, Beckett, has an ERA of 2.26 but only has 6 wins. Our 5th starter, Haren has 8 wins but an ERA of 4.23. Our 5 starters have 522 K’s and 109 walks. If they can stay healthy they are a good staff. The more I think about it, the more I think Crawford ought to be given a shot at CF. I know that asking someone to change positions in the middle of a pennant race is usually not a good thing, but something has to be done and it doesn’t appear that the minors are going to supply a CF. Besides that, there aren’t any good CF’s that are touchable. Right now there are only 4-5 really good CF in the majors. Kemp needs a change of scenery because he is lost right now. And I thought he was turning it around 2 weeks ago.

    I still think Hanley and the SS position is a key. Will Hanley get healthy, will he get hot, is he sign-able if we keep him, is he trade-able if we go that way, how many runs will his fielding cost us? You know he will not be happy sitting on the bench. If we trade him will Arrr be able to fill in with the bat enough so the position isn’t a black hole? Lots of wondering going on here.

    • Badger says:

      Yeah there is Campy. We know Ramirez is very frustrated with how it has gone. I really believed, being a contract year, we would see the best of Hanley. In my scenario he, along with the re-emergence of the real Matt Kemp, were keys to our winning it all. But, how can anyone not wonder out loud if Matt will ever be the same and if the seemingly fragile Hanley is just too risky to sign long term? Not playing defense might be the only way for him to see a long term contract. I don’t think we can keep him. But there is still a lot of baseball left to play and both these players realize the stakes.

      Pitching. We’ve got it. But I do hope Haren and Ryu have 30 starts in them. And, may the baseball gods be sympathetic and return Josh Beckett to our rotation.

  31. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Hopefully Hanley will be ready for full-time action after the break, and more hopefully he’ll stay that way for the remainder of the season. He’s especially important if Kemp’s bat remains as it’s been. The Dodgers could get by with a defensive wiz at short if they were getting full production from Agon, Gordon, Uribe, Kemp, Ethier/SVS/Crawford, and Puig. But that’s not happening with all those people, so a healthy Hanley for the remainder of the season is necessary. Kemp especially is an important complement to Hanley, but so are the others. Also the return of Justin Turner should help off the bench. Does his return mean goodbye Rojas? Or am I forgetting someone. That Rojas can’t hit, even Ray Charles could see that. I do, however, think that A.J. Ellis is capable of doing more than he’s done. Still, he’s probably best suited to be a backup.

    Can’t say I’m satisfied with what I’ve been seeing of the offense, but I don’t think they’re anywhere as bad as they were against the Padres. And then again, maybe we should also give some credit to the Padres’ pitching. Tyson Ross today was simply downright nasty, especially that slider. He’d look good in a Dodgers uniform, but we know that’s not happening. Starting pitching is still good, and we do have some reliable arms in the bullpen. So I’m confident, especially because I believe reinforcements will be coming via trade and maybe some from the farm (Joc Pederson?).

    Mark, you finally got your wish. Seager moves up to Chattanooga. My guess is that the Dodgers planned that move months ago, as long as Seager was producing. If he tears up AA, maybe at season’s end he can get a look at ALBQ. But don’t bet the house on it. And he’s not going to see LA in September due to 40-man roster issues. Besides, what’s the hurry? If he produces, he’ll get to LA soon enough.

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