Smack

If you happened to wonder how the Dodgers would do against some of the best competition in the AL, then you were excited when the Dodgers came out and scored five runs in the first inning.  The Dodgers were clapping, chest-bumping and celebrating the total annihilation of the Tigers and their ace.  The celebration was premature as Detroit and Verlander calm adjusted and proceeded to shut the Dodgers offense down and put up 14 unanswered runs,  It can only be called a smack-down.  Disappointing to say the least.

Dodger Ramblings

  • Carl Crawford is progressing in his rehab, so what to do?  Matt Kemp is just getting hot – is Mattingly going to sit him?  Is a trade brewing?  I don’t think Crawford can play CF, so LF is his only position.
  • Is Ryu hiding some injury or disability… or maybe he’s just too fat?
  • I can’t believe some of you still deny Clayton was better than Sandy before age 26.  Kershaw had 77 wins before he was 26 while Sandy had 54.  Clayton won two Cy Youngs before age 26.  Koufax won none.  Koufax’s career ERA before age 26 was 3.95 while Kershaws was 2.59.  6 out of 7 years , Clayton’s ERA was below 3.00, while Koufax had just 1 year in 7 with an ERA below 3.00 before he was 26.  Do I need to go on?  There really is no argument unless your mind is already made up and you don’t want to be confused with the facts.
  • Stephen Fife pitched 6 innings of 5 hit 2 run ball in Albuquerque last night.  He might be needed soon.
  • Let’s hope Greinke steps up today and the Dodger offense doesn’t take leave of their senses after the first inning.

Christmas in july

  1. Badger says:

    Ok, Kershaw is better at age 26

    He now has 4 years to throw 5 no hitters, win 166 games, complete 138 games, win 4 championships, win 6 ERA titles, throw 2325 innings, strike out 2400, win 2 MVPs, put up 54 WAR, throw 41 shutouts………. need I go on? and then we can say he is the greatest Dodger pitcher ever.

    Is a trade in the works? SOMETHING is happening. We may not know what for weeks.

  2. BOB says:

    Yesterday’s game left a bad and ugly impression in my mind, almost as bad and ugly as the cover of the new ESPN magazine issue.

    Time to think like a closer, forget about yesterday, and move on to today’s game. Lets see how mentally tough the boys are today.

  3. Roger Dodger says:

    Saw the end of the Giants – A’s game last night. Which leads me to this thought . . . .

    Maybe the American League is just better, stronger that the great National League !!!

    Then today — the first inning — same kind of thing.

    Watching the game on my laptop computer in the Rehab center my wife is in — great reception.

  4. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Mark this is what I said yesterday. “Sorry Mark, but it’s not indisputable that Kershaw is a better at 26 than Koufax.” And that is ABSOLUTELY TRUE!!!!!! I didn’t say anything about before 26, I said at the age of 26. And it was in 1962, when he was 26, that Koufax became the Koufax he would be until he retired after 1966. Maybe you can’t believe it, but I will continue to deny that Kershaw is better than Koufax at age 26. And I will continue to insist that I recognize that Kershaw will likely have a better career based on longevity, but that he will never even come close to approaching Koufax for DOMINANCE. And let me know when Kershaw throws a shutout in the 7th game of the World Series on 2 days rest.

    As for yesterday, the Dodgers did stop scoring after the first inning. And that’s really unusual for this team. They do have a tendency to stop scoring, and that is definitely one of their weaknesses. I’d much prefer if they would learn to tack on runs. As for Ryu, I don’t think yesterday had anything to do with an injury or being fat. It was very clear to me that he was being squeezed, and forced over the middle of the plate, where he can’t pitch. Ryu relies on changing speeds and hitting his spots on the corners, and changing the eye level of hitters. My guess is that he learned a valuable lesson yesterday, and will not let plate umpire calls dictate how he pitches.

    Can’t comment on today’s game. Had a meeting, and missed it.

    However, I choose not to accentuate the negative. This is a good team, but it does have some issues. Among them is the need for another starting pitcher, and an addition to the pen. Hopefully they will address those needs, and maybe others, in the next 3 weeks. Let’s not forget that the baseball season is a marathon.

  5. BOB says:

    Another bad game. Not terrible, just bad. 4 guys showed up to play today. 0-5 BARISP says it all AGAIN. Who said Rojas was a no hit all glove player? Ok I admit I never thought that he could hit above the Mendoza line. I see from the player bios that Zach lee has not gained a single pound since high school. What kind of player development is that? Has he become a yoga practicing vegetarian? Crawford will return to the Dodgers to be the $20 mil per year Designated Pinch Runner. Herb Washington will be jealous. Dodgers still have the 2nd best winning % in the NL. Parity? Time for home cooking against the lowly Padres. Go A’s!

    • Badger says:

      Yeah, without Rojas it’s a 3 hit shut out – which considering what happened yesterday would have made it a terrible game. Viva la Rojas! Having said that, the quicker we can replace him the better.

      Pierzynski anyone?

  6. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    I guess Yankee fans care. Dodger fans–probably happy now that the Dodgers didn’t sign him. Amazing how quickly feelings can change.

    Rojas is what he is, and what everybody knows he is. Good field, no hit shortstop, who can also play 2nd and 3rd. Arrrrrr is even a better fielder (something tells me that he would have successfully slapped that tag on Torii Hunter yesterday). Conceivable that that play changed the course of yesterday’s game. And over the long term, Arrrrr probably has a better bat.

    When Crawford returns, maybe the Dodgers should return Kemp to CF. He’s never been a really good CF (gold glove was won by his bat), but he’s better than Ethier and SVS. And maybe as he continues to play, he’s getting closer and closer to what he was before all the injuries. Might be better in CF than what we saw of him earlier this year. Outside of a trade that brings in a brand new CF, I think that might be the best solution for now.

    Still need pitching (starting and relief), another catcher, and maybe an outfielder who can hit and also give us superior defense in CF. That’s a tall order, and my guess is that it won’t be completely filled by trades. Maybe the farm system can kick in some useful pieces, and maybe not.

  7. idahoal says:

    Brooklyn, I mentioned in another post that it may be better to move Kemp back to center field. I agree with you. Than let Eithier and Crawford fight it out for left field. Hopefully Crawford can be traded. Colletti is talking that Maholm may start. Hard to believe.

  8. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    A.J. Pierzynski’s bat is still decent, but he’s a low OBP guy. And he’s only thrown out 9 of 47 runners (19%). He’s a lefthanded hitter, so that would provide a little balance. But I wouldn’t give anything more than a couple of wooden nickels for the 37 year old. All in all, I’m not chomping at the bit to get him. Of course I have haven’t followed him that closely, so maybe he has value that escapes me. Suzuki interests me more, although I admit to not knowing a whole lot about him either.

  9. Badger says:

    Suzuki is an All Star so clearly he is the best of all of them and would be costly. AJP is still a +dWAR player, as is Butera, but which player would you trust in a pennant race?

    If the Cardinals trade for Peavy, does it mean Price is our target? To be honest I think the Rays keep Price. It would take two of our best 3, maybe all of them, and I don’t see Jed doing that.

  10. Roger Dodger says:

    What has really hurt of late are 2 things for me:

    1. The high priced middle of the order guys — are just not hitting much in key situations. Hanley, AGon are way off the mark. Puig is getting on, but left standing (or like today getting caught off 3rd). Kemp is doing some things, and also striking out a lot. He looked terrible on that last AB today.

    2. This continual use of Perez and League — If that is all that the Dodgers can give Donnie to use in the 6 – 7 – 8 innings —- this team is just not ready for post season.

    #1 above is up to the players themselves to figure out. Badger keeps saying they will heat up later in the season. Well, it is later and needs to happen soon.

    #2 above is up to Ned and ownership to make a trade and or bring up some minor leaguers.

    • Badger says:

      We started heating up last month. I said I believed we would play better in the summer and we have. We are in first place at the moment, though that is tentative. I don’t know what is wrong with the middle of the lineup but we looked pretty good before we got to Detroit. I still believe in this team but I will admit my confidence is not as high as it has been. We need to make some moves.

  11. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    It’s only 6 innings, but Grant Holmes (our #1 pick) is off to a nice start. One hit and 9 strikeouts in those 6 innings. Don’t worry, the Dodgers can’t trade him. I believe the rules prohibit trading a draft pick until one year after the draft. But you can rest assured that when the Dodgers are considering whether or not to trade prospects, they look at the depth in the organization. So maybe they include a good pitching prospect in a deal to get an impact big league player, because feel they have depth behind that prospect.

    http://www.milb.com/milb/stats/stats.jsp?pos=P&sid=milb&t=p_pbp&pid=656550

    Games like the last couple of days don’t inspire confidence, and no doubt create doubts. Totally understandable.

    • Badger says:

      Looks like Elbert is ready. I’m sure ready to see what he can do do, so, adios Perez.

      I just read that Lee is doing his best to nibble on corners because he doesn’t have any knock out pitch. I’m fine with that if he can do it. There have been many pitchers who have succeeded doing just that. But good luck with today’s umps. I have an ESPN Magazine here with an article devoted to the metrics of how to fool an umpire – “there’s magic in turning a borderline pitch into a called strike”. Yeah, I guess with dummy umps there is. As an ump I was trained to ignore the catchers glove. It’s a strike or it isn’t. Period. Those catchers that moved their glove over the plate or held their glove for protracted periods of time were informed it wouldn’t work and that it really isn’t a good idea to piss off an ump. When it comes to Lee, all I care about is – can he give a series of quality starts to the Major League club. He is a first round $5 million end of the rotation starter. Give us 7 innings of sub 4.0 and I’ll be fine with it. I think it’s time to see what he can do. That’s why he is at AAA. And who better to test him on than the weakest hitting team in the league? Give him Ryu’s start this week and give Hyun-Jin an extended rest. It’s clear to me he could use it.

      There is an interesting piece on who is and who is ain’t playing well in our minors. My problem with that is every team in the league has players lighting up the lower levels. Who’s hitting .350 (Arrue, pronounced Are-ru-ay, was) and who has a sub 1 WHIP at AA or above? If the help isn’t there by mid to late July then trade them for somebody who actually can help.

      Speaking of help, is Kobe going to get any for his swan song? That effn contract he signed. Hope he’s happy with it. He will be the richest guy on a last place club if Kupchak can’t pull any rabbits out of his hat.

  12. Roger Dodger says:

    What is frustrating for Dodger fans is —

    Lee is out on the mound, trying to figure it out, ok . . . trying to make it to the majors.

    But so are Perez and League out there on the mound, trying to figure it out, that is sad . . . they have both been around awhile in the majors.

    Poor AJ Ellis. His just above .200 average with no power is not noticed when the middle of the lineup hits and wins games. But when the middle is silent, his .200 and no power looks terrible.

    Tonight the Padres. And big Clayton.

    • Badger says:

      I look at AJ as just another backup. He’s a +WAR player but not by much. And so far this year he has a negative dWAR. We could live with that because his OBP is still suited for the 8 hole. But it would be nice to have a thumper behind the dish.

      Anybody heard from Guerrero? A post card now and then would be nice.

      We didn’t give Lee a 5 XL signing bonus to be a AAA pitcher. Develop 3 pitches, change speeds with them, hit your spots and get your LSU QB ass into the Dodgers starting rotation or …….. trade him to the Pelicans for a years worth of shrimp.

  13. idahoal says:

    I really do not understand the Dodger hitting philosophy. They look like they are trying to drive up the number of pitches to get to the bull pen. I see many opposing pitchers who throw the first pitch right down the middle and most, not all of the Dodgers take the pitch. Now the pitchers are in control and ahead in the count. That first pitch may be the best pitch they see the entire at bat. Maybe it is just me.

    • Badger says:

      A lot of guys do take the first pitch. One of my peeves. A tubed fastball should never go unpunished.

      Interesting game plan for our outfield jam:

      Play them all.

      Which is very much what the a Dodgers had been doing before Crawfords injury.

  14. Badger says:

    Pederson is back. Tripled in a shortened game yesterday. Still haven’t seen anything on Guerrero.

    Yadier Molina with a thumb injury. Bet the Cards go after Suzuki.

  15. Brooklyn Dodger says:

    Molina got hurt at the right time. Dodgers go to St. Loo after the Padre series.

    Bob, I just couldn’t be satisfied with a split in the Padre series. Would love a sweep, but understand how difficult that is, even against a weak team. At a minimum 3 of 4 would satisfy me. Guess I’m just greedy.

    Top of 9th, A’s leading midgets 6-1 in SF.

    Rooting for Kershaw to breaks Hershiser’s record, even though it means having to read one of Mark’s rants (for want of a better term) telling us how much better Kershaw is than Koufax. Guess I’m used to that. I know a Met fan who tells me that Seaver was better than Koufax. Same story. Better long term career, but that’s all.

    • Roger Dodger says:

      Depends what best or better means.

      I vote for Dick Littlefield as the best pitcher in all of baseball.

      He pitched for 9 seasons, and pitched for 9 different teams. See, that means that 8 teams thought he so important, they had to get him. Traded 9 times.

      Now Koufax nor Kershaw can top that stat.

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