Earth Spins Backward – In Other News, Dodgers Win!

It hadda happen sooner or later folks, the Dodgers beat the Marlins today and snapped their losing streak at six games. Led by the fantastic pitching of Kenta Maeda and the red hot bat of the red-haired Justin Turner, the Dodgers were able to avoid using the bullpen until the ninth inning, and chalk up a much-needed win right before heading off to their next hurdle – the Washington Nationals.

Kenta Maeda pitched a masterpiece. He threw eight scoreless innings, giving up only two hits and no walks, finishing strong by retiring the last 17 batters he faced. I was hoping a bit to see Maeda get the ball in the ninth for a CG win, but Kenley Jansen hadn’t worked in about a week, so it was a foregone conclusion that he was going to get the ball to close out the game.

I was watching the game with my nephew and called the over/under for Kenley at 2 base runners and 25 pitches. I was pretty close, as Jansen allowed his usual two base runners and it took 24 pitches to get the job done. That said, no one scored, so there’s that.

It takes more than stellar pitching to win, of course, and the Dodgers’ offense took care of things early today. Justin Turner, fresh off the disabled list, did exactly what the Dodgers were hoping for. He sparked the offense with a three-for-four afternoon, which included two doubles and a career-high five RBIs.

Turner led things off with a bases loaded double in the third inning…

 

Matt Kemp followed up with a double to score Turner…

The Dodgers got fat off the Marlins’ bullpen today as Turner punched in another run-scoring double

Justin Turner is on a three-game hitting streak, and Yasiel Puig has hit the long ball lately, so look out Dodger fans. The boys seem to be heating up right in time for Washington. Now if they can just find a way to avoid using the bullpen for the rest of the season.

Oscar Martinez

Oscar Martinez

I was born in the shadow of Dodger Stadium and immediately drenched in Dodger Blue. Chavez Ravine is my baseball cathedral, Vin Scully was the golden voice of summer all my life, and Tommy Lasorda remains the greatest Dodgers manager ever. My favorite things are coffee, beer, and the Dodgers beating the Giants. I also blog about my baseball card hobby at All Trade Bait, All the Time.

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97 thoughts on “Earth Spins Backward – In Other News, Dodgers Win!

  1. Please don’t anyone post that this is the turning point in the season for the Dodgers, I don’t want to punish my belly with gut-splitting laughter.

    Carry On.

    1. True

      I don’t know about that, only because both Turner and Kemp have a good history of hitting.

      And they did look good, hitting one after another.

  2. McCullough was on the ESPN Baseball podcast.

    He mentioned what we all think. Bad bullpen, ludicrously diminished offensive production. Injuries.

    He also mentions that debt-service MLB guidelines impacted the past off-season.

    Interesting, and McCullough is always great.

    1. Yeah, reading what reporters and analysts have to say is interesting Bluto. You can learn a lot by listening to what others have to say.

      I’d like to ask you, if all you had to judge the team was what you saw on the field, have you seen enough games to allow would you make your own analysis? I think I remember you saying you haven’t seen many games.

      I read several columns every day, not always the same ones. I do it mostly to get an inside look at the organization. I watch the games and I know what I look for. I also know there’s a lot you cannot see and everything that is said on the field and in the dugout cannot be heard. That’s where reporters come in for me. Tell me what’s being said. Most of it whitewash, but some of it has context.

      I know what I see. What I see is many on the field underperforming. I also see many on the field that I think don’t belong. I also see an organization being re-calibrated. Predicting outcome from this meshugaas is impossible. I sure want to make the playoffs again. And I think we all know how we would feel if the giants did.

      1. I never really make my own analysis, usually it’s based on other people’s analysis. I can’t watch many games due to work and family AND those people (who I trust) are smarter than me at analysis. That said, I think just based on how poorly the team has played, it probably won’t make the playoffs.

        It’s an interesting question if I would be happy (on aggregate) of getting to the World Series one year, then not making the playoffs the next for an entire stretch of years. Obviously, I’d prefer sustained playoffs, but I think I can live with that.

        I really don’t care at all if the Giants make the playoffs or not. All I really care about is the Red Sox and Dodgers being well run and doing well.

  3. Out of the cellar for the time being. Depends on what the Pads do in Pittsburgh. Duquette not ruling out trading Machado at the deadline or any of his other pending free agents, Jones, Britton, potential spots for Machado, Chicago Cubs, Dodgers and Yankees. Real interesting read on ESPN.com….Sam Miller on Mike Trout having maybe the greatest season in history. based on WAR. Babe Ruth’s 1923 season ranks as the best so far when he was worth 14.1 WAR. Amazing season for the Babe. Trout finished Sunday’s game with a 3.51 WAR, on pace for a 14.2 WAR season. I did not realize until I read this story all the stats that go into setting a players WAR….

      1. Yeah, Trout is the real deal. Mays was the best all around player I ever saw. But Trout has a lot of the same type skills Willie had. Except maybe for May’s speed. What Mays did was play with joy and flair. Not many do that in todays game. Willie was always smiling. You never knew if Willie was having a bad day or not. I just wish Trout was a Dodger……Mays was almost a Dodger. Roy Campanella told the Dodgers about this kid he saw play and he told them they should sign the kid. They sent scout Clyde Sukeforth down to scout him. Sukeforth reported back that the kid could not hit a curveball. The kid was 17 year old Willie Mays….so much for Sukeforth’s scouting prowess.

        1. Puig is the closest player I’ve seen who has the Willie Mays joy in playing. The way he catches his fly balls, the speed at which he chases fly balls, his rocket-like arm, and his playful character are all fun to watch. He is just a very inconsistent hitter that will never match up to Willie Mays and not a very good base runner like Willie. Big holes in Puig’s game. He’s young enough to smooth them out, but will he?

          1. The Dodgers have been waiting for the answer to that question since the day he signed. He has unbelievable tools. He can run, hit, hit for power, throw and he has awesome fielding skills. His biggest problem in the beginning was the tag he had of not being coachable. He has matured more in the last year and a half than most people expected. They were hoping he would have seasons like last year from the beginning, and he was so damn good when he came up, I think he set a bar that has been near impossible to live up too. There was a point in time where he was hitting like .450 on first pitches. Unreal. But it was his attitude and antics that pissed off a lot of people. He is very lucky the FO did not give up on him and trade him. I applaud him for giving a great effort to trying to get better. I also think the frustration of his bad start got to him a little. He was hitting in bad luck and then for a while reverted to his old style and his average plummeted because of that. But he seems to be getting in a groove. If he does, he is the kind of player who can carry an offense. You get last years production in the 8 hole, you create a lot of problems for other teams pitching staffs.

        2. Thanks again for pointing me in the direction of that Trout article, Michael.

          It’s wonderfully written and insightful, like this bit:

          May 12: Probably my favorite hitless Trout game of the season so far. He drew four walks, but the sequence I love is in the 11th inning. With Zack Cozart on first as the potential winning run, Trout grounded it to the third baseman, who threw out Cozart. That’s a failure. But Trout’s power had the third baseman playing deep against him, which, combined with Trout’s speed, made it impossible for the Twins to turn the double play. Trout beat the throw to first. That’s a tiny, tiny, tiny bump to his WAR.

          So then Trout was on base. On the second pitch to Upton, he stole second. That was Trout’s eighth steal of the year, and he has yet to be caught. Indeed, through the first quarter of the season, Trout hadn’t made any outs on the bases. A couple of years ago, it seemed clear that his once-elite speed had become merely very good speed, as he had gotten older, gotten a little thicker, settled into the playing style of a more power-based superstar. Unexpectedly, though, the elite speed came back. According to Statcast’s data, Trout’s sprint speed in 2016 was 28.9 feet per second, the 48th-fastest in baseball. Fast! But this year he’s running 29.4 feet per second, the 14th-fastest runner in baseball, just ahead of Dee Gordon. And so, on the second pitch to Upton, he stole second base.

          That stolen base changed everything. When Upton flied out to right, Trout went to third as the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning. Any single, or even wild pitch, would win it, so Twins manager Paul Molitor elected to intentionally walk Albert Pujols and Simmons and face Jefry Marte. Those walks will add to the WARs of Pujols and Simmons, respectively, but Trout made them happen by getting into scoring position.

          And then, after Marte grounded out, and the Angels gave up two runs in the top of the 12th, the Angels batted one last time. Ian Kinsler walked, Kole Calhoun grounded into a double play, Rene Rivera walked, and Cozart flied out to end the game with Trout on deck. If not for that double play or that fly out, Trout very well might have batted as the winning run, the best hitter in baseball getting the chance to win it, the best-case scenario for the Angels. The reason he nearly got that chance is one inning earlier, Paul Molitor intentionally walked Albert Pujols and Andrelton Simmons, turning the lineup over more quickly, getting to Trout sooner, all because Trout beat that potential double play, stole second base and went to third on a Justin Upton fly out.

          1. Bluto, thanks for that cite about Trout.

            And I ask everyone to read that and all the blogs out there, AND FBZ, and Fangraphs, and pretty morning ch every FO and GM OUT THERE except for the Astros and the Cubs …

            This is why “old school” and “small ball” works. The data is there. Except we don’t have “categories” tracking this data.

            Show me one “great old school player” who has horrible SABR stats. You won’t find one. But plenty of great SABR stats players are debated and debated because they are poor old school players (have of our roster are those players incidentally).

            At some point the weak, lazy SABR technicians are simply going with these types of players (exhibit A – Grandal) rather than players that go well in BOTH old school and SABR systems. That’s just laziness and lack of intelligence. I’ve seen it plenty on board rooms where supposedly the Ivy League investment bankers are the smartest (and loudest) men in the room, only to be brought down within the next audited accounting period.

          2. Third baseman was playing deep? A drag bunt down the third base line and two things likely happen – the runner is moved over easily and Trout beats it out for a hit. Old school Mickey Mantle play.

        3. Sukeforth was able to see that Jackie had the tools to play in the Majors. That based on only one all start game. Of course Sukeforth also picked Branca over Erskine on that fateful day in 1951. Dressen was too scared to make the call (or to worried about his WS money).

          1. Clyde was a good scout usually, but he totally misfired on Mays. They totally forgot that Thompson had taken Branca deep in a game earlier in the year. With that short porch in LF at the Polo Grounds, all he needed was a lazy fly ball and it was out….

  4. Bad news Package. ESPN reporting that the GM, Zaidi gave Roberts a vote of confidence and echoed Friedman’s statement that Roberts is the perfect guy to lead the Dodgers now and in the immediate future…sorry old buddy, looks like you are stuck with Dummy..

      1. I know both Mookie Betts, and JD Martinez, have hit 13 HRs.

        And other then Verlander, I think JD Martinez could have also made a big difference in the World Series, if we would have got him.

        The Dodgers owners wanted to hear from Roberts, before the front office made the final choice for manager.

          1. Not sure I would buy that. There are some very good hitters out there. Betts is hitting 20 points higher with the same number of homers and an OBP 40 points higher. Machado only 5 points down in average, but has more HR’s and RBI’s.

          2. Betts is at the top of the list today. Looking at that list I’d take him or Machado. Martinez strikes out too much for my liking. I know that doesn’t bother some. It does bother me.

          3. He’s currently OPSing over 1.000 Yueh. That should make anyone’s Top 10. Will he there in September? Doubt it. So, if we are talking now he’s on the list, if we are talking then, who knows.

          4. Badger, if the statement is “Top 10 according to OPS” then yes he’s up there. But use another metric and he’s no longer in the top 10. There are rankings for top 10 hitters according to OBP, oWAR, total bases, “clutch” stats, OPS vs. top 50 pitchers, OBP vs. top 50 pitchers, etc., etc.

            For me, personally, a top 10 hitter does not have so many strikeouts. And all I said was that he’s not a top 10 hitter for my top 10. My rule is simple. If I could count, in under 10 seconds, 15-20 hitters that I think is better without really having to think through anyone of them, then the candidate is not in my top 10.

          5. He’s also hitting .344 with 13 home runs, 38 RBI’s and a .656 slg.% Yueh. If that don’t make your Top 10 I’d have ask oWHY.

      2. Well, they ran it as one of their headline stories. So maybe they do and maybe they don’t but it echoes what has been reported on more than once source lately and that is the FO LOVES DAVEY!

        1. I would take Betts over all of them, because he can beat a team many ways.

          He is the top defensive right fielder in all of baseball, the last three years, and he is more like a centfielder, but rightfield is the hardest field to play in Boston.

          He is like Puig in being daring on the base paths, but he is a better base runner then Puig.

          And Betts didn’t come up as an outfielder, he was going to play second, but second was blocked.

          I only mentioned JD Matinez because he is on the same team with Betts.

          And because I think if we would have gotten JD, we would have also won the World Series, like with Verlander, but for a different reason.

          Machado is a different kind of player.

  5. Any time upper management gives you the vote of confidence it usually means that you are toast. Kind of like a “Lifetime achievement award” means you are almost dead or dead!!! But we love all you did for us……. RIP

    1. Tim

      I think the owners would have to make that happen.

      But I think the owners know better, because Roberts can only work with what he has been given.

      But it is always good to hear from you, and I do think your right, about the team being over managed at times.

      But maybe we will see more of our starters pitching deep into games, with the way the bullpen has been this year.

    2. Bingo. Good call Tim. This goes double when the top management are Wall Street, PE fund or real estate tycoons. Unfortunately for Roberts, Guggenheim is all three. He’s gone.

  6. Vote of Confidence, see Kiss of Death. However with this group of meatheads, they probably mean it and Roberts is here to stray, I mean stay.

  7. Maeda deserves some of the credit for this win. He pitched very well and went long, an unusual feat for him. But the obvious hero is Turner who I’ve called the heart and soul of this team. He is the only superstar we have and he will definitely help the team and make others around him better, Kemp being the beneficiary of batting after him. This should be a nice combination to watch going into the rest of the season. Please stay healthy!!

    The pitching, if they hold like they did in this win, will give us a chance to move up, but will it hold? To date, it hasn’t held and we see no changes made that might give a different result. With Stripling pitching tomorrow against Scherzer?, at Washington, maybe we should hope for rain?! Maybe Strip can get lucky and stay in for 5-6 innings, but what then? It’s bull**** time. Prayer beads are not going to help.

  8. Maeda deserves some of the credit?

    Yeah, you could say that. 8 innings of shutout ball. 1 run wins this game. Even the schneiding 6 games in row Los Dodgers scored more than 0.

    You didn’t know what into WAR Michael? You must not remember when I posted this:

    WAR = (Batting Runs + Base Running Runs +Fielding Runs + Positional Adjustment + League Adjustment +Replacement Runs) / (Runs Per Win)

    https://www.fangraphs.com/library/misc/war/

    Haven’t read Miller. Guess I need to now.

    Willie Mays was the best player ever saw too. Mantle was a close second. Haven’t seen Trout in person.

    I’m not surprised Davey gets a vote of confidence. I expect him to be there when they rebuild once they are way under the cap. How much under will they be by the time the winter meetings start? $50 million? $70 million? You can buy a lot of new sabr toys for that kind of coin. Roberts will have fun with that. But would I be shocked if they fire him? Prolly not. I’m learning not to be surprised by anything these guys do.

    1. No, I did not remember that, but it makes a little sense to me now. Amazing that Babe’s 23 season is the best ever, some thought it would be 27, oh well…..

  9. Good read in Plaschke’s column. He’s not a new age metric guy, he’s an school writer that happens to be an award winning columnist. I think he does a good job of summing it up.

    What do we do between now and July 31st? We play baseball with the guys we have and add anybody we can get on the cheap. This has the feel of a very early “wait til next year”.

    1. Nice read from Plaschke (for once).

      But if anyone thinks that that the FBZ is going to shell out a $150-$200m contract, they are fooling themselves. They did not go for Stanton who would be cheaper and for less years, so they’re not going to take the chance of spending big and then risk the big FA signee having a bad year in the first year after the big contract. It’s going to be the same churn but no one is going to buy the depth schtick now. Funny why Plaschke did not mention that … wait he’s that that good of a sportswriter because he’s too lazy to follow the teams closely ….

      1. That’s harsh Yueh. He writes about all things LA. Being a columnist is different than being a blog writer or a guy who writes only about 1 team. What Plaschke mentioned was injuries and poor play. The point being only to ask the same questions we are – wtf do we do now?

        I like his writing.

        In high school I had visions of being the next Jim Murray. I loved reading his column. I wrote for the school paper and was on the yearbook staff. I also wrote songs trying to be like Dylan and had plans to play SS for UCLA, or play for the Dodgers. I had a tryout. They were interested. So I felt like I had to choose between possibly playing ball professionally or playing in college and becoming a sportswriter. So I joined the Marines two weeks after graduation. The point? What do I know about what to do next.

    2. Hello Badger, hope life is good.

      Just read the article myself and then read your comment here.

      http://www.latimes.com/sports/dodgers/la-sp-dodgers-plaschke-20180517-story.html

      As much as it pains me at this early stage if the season, I agree with the rationale behind the article.

      The problem as I see it, is how good are the kids that are gonna step into the breach next season?

      The Catchers look good, but with the exception of Verdugo (who still needs some work), I don’t see a Buehler or Bellinger lurking in the shadows, to help out. It appears that we haven’t got anything much to trade either, if you don’t want to include Buehler or Verdugo.

      So what to do? See where we are in July and then make a call whether to try and gain some pieces for next season by trading away anyone not deemed helpful for 19?

      Grandal might return something, but who else realistically might bring in a decent haul?
      Kershaw is probably the only piece that would bring a decent return, but dealing him comes with the fear of a fan backlash.

      I think we are in a hole here, and the next couple of weeks are as pivotal as we have witnessed for a long time.

      Some very big decisions coming up.

      1. Hey W. Good to see you!

        Life goes on buddy. Drop me a line sometime if you want the boring details.

        How good are we going to be? Good question. We looked pretty good in the system when FAZ arrived, not as good now according to most sources. Buehler looks like the real deal, not sure about the others, including the Cubans. I agree with those who think we won’t purchase the biggest names in free agency. Where these FAZ guys cut their teeth, Tampa and Oakland, the Greinke-like contracts Colletti negotiated just didn’t happen. On some levels I kinda would like Colletti in on those negotiations this winter, but I understand that is unlikely.

        If only one free agent were to get here, who is the best fit? At this time, with the team playing so poorly, I have no idea. Does Kershaw opt out? Do we trade Grandal and go with youth behind the plate? Do we move Seager off short? Puig? Verdugo, Toles, Pederson? Hill, Ryu, Maeda?

        I still think we have until the All Star break. After that the deadline approaches quickly.

        1. Badger

          Houston Mitchell also wrote an article in the LA Times today, check it out, I wrote this at the bottom of this tread too.

          But I wish you would have been able to be that writer you wanted to be, because you are definitely a very good writer.

          But I know you thought you were doing what was best for this country at the time, but that has helped you to be the person you are today, and you are a very good person.

        2. Badger, it’s over. I know you want to stay positive but it is over. The Dodgers do not have the leadership to turn it around. FAZ is stubborn and bullheaded, Roberts is a Dummy and the players are not in the mood to win. What a shame. I don’t look for too many moves especially for good solid players. Maybe a hurt player or two or a rookie or an older has been but no good players. Believing in the Dodgers is not believing in FAZ and Friends. Some day they will be gone and then we have a chance if we are still here.

          1. Well, you may be right pack. I’m gonna follow them just the same. These guys surprised the heck out of me last year. Maybe the will do it again.

  10. People like to give Plaschke crap. True, he overuses the single-sentence paragraph in his writing, but I find myself agreeing with him more often than not.

    So the Dodgers finally won a game. Can world peace be far behind?

  11. Houston Mitchell wrote an article today in the LA Times, that is better then the other two articles, even though he didn’t go over everything.

    Because he spoke the truth as usual.

    I wish Orel would read the bottom paragraph, of what Ross Porter said he learned from Vinny, about getting to close to the players.

  12. Wow, we are saved…the Dodgers claimed reliever Eric Goeddel from the Mariners. He has to be placed on the major league roster and they have signed his brother, Tyler to a minor league deal. Tyler is a 25 year old outfielder who played 92 games for the Phillies in 2016. He hit a whopping .192. Eric is 2-0 this year with a 1.23 ERA. Goeddel is out of options, so he has to be added to the 25 man roster…So who leaves? My guess, Hudson…

      1. That’s off the 40 MJ……they need to move someone of the 25 because Goeddel cannot be put on waivers. He has to be on the 25 man. He is reporting tomorrow and can be activated as the 26th player allowed for doubleheaders. But they will still have to drop someone off the 25 after that to keep him.

    1. Mr. Norris
      I know some people do not blame Dummy at all for the Dodger position but everyone knows I do. Of course FAZ also has to take some blame. This team is constructed by FAZ but run by Dummy. Some do not see where he is accountable at all. Have you ever heard of a job with NO accountability? I have not. Tonight’s lineup without Kemp is absolutely a bonehead move. I think Joc is a kiss ass but its working and you can’t blame him for wanting to play. Hey, its working for him. I guess you could say Muncy got Kemp’s spot if you move the players around but I see no good reason to bench Kemp. Tomorrow you can bet Kemp will sit at least 1 game.

      1. Well run is the optimum word there Pack. And in the culture that now runs the Dodgers, Roberts is little more than a yes man as far as the lineups are concerned. He fills out the card, but you can bet those players on that card were put there by the FO in one way or another. Friedman, Zaidi and Roberts talk all the time and the FO makes lineup suggestions based on matchups, and not so much on how hot a player is. Scherzer is one of the best RHP in the league, and if you looked at the preview on the Dodger web site, none of the Dodgers hit him very well and Kemp is hitting .200 against him lifetime. So benching Kemp is not so much a bonehead move as a move dictated by lack of success against a certain pitcher. They are heavy into sabermetrics as you well know, and Roberts is the manager BECAUSE he buys into what they preach. I am not defending Roberts in any way shape or form, I am just telling you it is not all his decision. My main issue with Roberts, and where he is totally accountable, is his in game managing skills. He is not all that good of a in game strategist or manager. Oh, last year almost every move he made worked. Except in the World Series when his serious penchant for micro managing cost the Dodgers a couple of games. He has a different cast this year. Not the same talent out there in the pen or on the bench. There was a quote from him I read either yesterday, or today, I cannot remember, but he said he felt sorry for Pedro Baez because of his struggles and the fans booing the guy. Instead of saying listen dude, you need to turn this crap around or you are on the bus to OKC, he is sorry for him. Alston and Lasorda would have that guy off of their teams so fast it would make peoples heads explode.

      2. One other thing to remember Pack. The FO is the entity that built this mess. They took some pieces from the prior regime, traded and added some of their own using their sabermetric measuring tool on who can do what the best. They do not think strikeouts are a bad thing. Their problem is that the main pieces have not performed up to the levels they need to and a couple of the major pieces are broken. What is frustrating is that they KNEW Seager was not going to be Seager even if he rested all winter and most of the spring. He was a DL candidate waiting to happen. Kershaw down for the 3rd straight year is not shocking. The fact that they never addressed the need for a class A pitcher behind Kersh is one of the key reasons that they are floundering now. The pieces they have are never have beens, wannabees, and the walking wounded. They had a bridge to Jansen and let him walk. Morrow is very much missed by this team. They have guys who have a lot of tools, but all the baseball acumen of a turd. Baez has nasty stuff, and no brain. Fields can dazzle one day and suck the next. Wood looked like the real deal last year and this year looks like he has regressed totally. Maeda is on again off again, and does not throw hard enough to scare anyone. That is another story, no team fears this team. You get them down, they are going to lose because that is all they have done since opening day. This is not a team that stages comebacks. Roberts puts them behind the 8 ball by subbing too early or using up his bench so that when they go to extra innings, they have nobody left who can actually hit. Since they only have 4 guys hitting over .250, they are easy targets. They just pitch around the big guns and force the scrubs to win the game, and so far it has worked pretty good. There are definitely players on the team who have no business being in the majors, but FAZ loves these guys. And there is nobody at the AAA or AA level who is going to make a major impact on this team. We are stuck with what we have……and so is Roberts.

        1. Mr. Norris
          Good overview, Thank you. I guess I am to a point where I am frustrated and at the same time know that this organization’s FO is not too good for the type of team and location they have. Many besides me think they are playing as a small market team and it just stinks. We want a chance and they are not giving us that chance.

          1. Morrow was not a savior, but he would have made the BP better and he was nails last year except for one game in the WS. He is pitching his ass off in Chicago and is their closer. He has a 1.20 ERA and 10 saves…..and remember, he was the only reliever on the team that did not give up a single HR during the regular season last year.

        2. They didn’t exactly let Morrow walk. He signed a contract elsewhere. Because of the commitment to the cap reset, they couldn’t afford Morrow. If they coulda they woulda.

          As for how Roberts manages the roster, this is a team that is designed to use all 25 players all year long. What he’s doing is what is to be expected. It worked last year, right up until the egg was laid in Game 7. It kinda surprises me you guys are surprised by this. This IS the FAZonian stratagem. We are, by definition, a utilitarian structure made up of utility pieces. Heck even our $35mm ace is only performing a supportive role in this play. He’s gone from 233 innings in ‘15 to 149 in ‘16, 175 in ‘17 and who knows how many this year but it may not be more than 150.

          We are just not a powerhouse. We aren’t the Yankees. We’re now the L.A. Rays. Has a ring to it don’t you think.

          Maybe the team can collect itself and play well. I still think they can compete for a playoff spot. A Championship? Extremely doubtful.

          1. Badger
            Signing Morrow would not have fixed the Dodger problems. You view Morrow like he some kind of superstar. Yes, he was good but not a superstar. Cap reset is not my problem, it’s theirs. I want a championship and they have the money to give it to me but because of their stubborness it is not to be. They are being run like a small market team, they are not exciting this year. Last year with the coming on of Bellinger and Taylor they looked like dynamite. They were an outlier. This year they do not resemble last year. Bottom line is they screwed the fans but it isn’t like we didn’t see it coming. Your name of the L.A. Rays is dead on. What a shame and disgrace.

          2. Surprised Badger? No way, I called it before spring. I knew this roster was and is made up of spare parts with few exceptions. I think they could have easily afforded Morrow with some creative thinking which at this point this bunch is totally incapable of. They kept all the flotsam from last year and brought in more damaged goods. They are not in my estimation, even a playoff team. When your only major free agent signing has not yet thrown a pitch and it is the middle of May, your evaluation skills are seriously lacking. Yeah, they are the LA Rays right now and the ones paying the price are the fans. When your main players stink right out of the chute you are going to have problems and they have them in spades. Justin Turner coming back is not going to solve all the holes in this team. They strike out too much, they have little speed, this year their defense is porous and their bullpen is a fire waiting to happen. They are the ones who stocked this misbegotten bunch of misfits and castoffs. They beat Miami one of three. How many do you think they are going to take from the Nats, if they get played, a team that is heads and tails above the Marlins on the food chain. The only thing saving them so far is that the teams above them are almost floundering as much as they are. Me, I cut the deadwood right now. Barnes, Pederson, Forsythe, Hernandez, are all gone from my team, along with Baez, and Hudson. I do not use Cody as a #4 hitter because right now he is not hitting like a #4. Taylor is striking out almost as much as some of the big whiff guys in the league. His OBP for a leadoff man is abysmal. With that lineup I posted yesterday set to start against Verlander, I would not be surprised to see a no hitter….they are a 10 on the suck scale, with no improvement in sight.

          3. I was responding to Michael’s post regarding Morrow.

            Cap reset IS your problem. It’s everyone’s problem. When Friedman took over he jacked payroll to $300 million. That came as real surprise to some. Not to me. You know who bellowed the loudest that wouldn’t happen, but it did. Now payroll sits over $100 million less than that and we expect what? … something to happen at $190mm that we couldn’t get done at $300mm?

            Reality is caving in on us. And the irony I see is that the one guy that has produced day after day is the player our management tried desperately to get rid of.

            I’m not sure what to make of this team. They may be as bad as they look. We’ll see eventually, but we won’t see in May.

  13. Package

    Scherzer is pitching in the second game tomorrow, and the line up Michael put up for today’s game, is the line up for the second game tomorrow, against Scherzer.

    And although Kemp doesn’t have good numbers against Scherzer, either does Joc or Muncy, and most hitters don’t have good numbers, against Scherzer.

    And Kemp is hitting righties as well, as Joc, and Muncy, but he is sitting in that game.

    That is ridiculous.

    1. yep…down right dumb since Kemp is hitting .298 vs RHP and 4 of his 5 homers have been off of RHP. Scherzer, if the game is even played since there is a 90% chance of rain tomorrow, might no-hit that bunch.

      1. You can call him that but he’s not stupid. He’s got a degree from UCLA and at age 45 has already made about $20 million in the game of baseball.

        He’s doing exactly what he has been hired to do. It may look strange to some, but I’ll bet it looks just fine to his boss.

          1. So, doing your job as dictated by your employer is ass kissing?

            What you see on the field are the players the GM put on the field. Read Mitchell’s column regarding where this team currently falls in team stats. We are middle of the pack in damn near every category. It doesn’t matter who the manager is, you don’t win championships with an average team.

        1. Badger
          Ass kissing is what you do to snuggle up to your employer not what you know to do. You say Roberts is no dummy so if that is the case he should know what to do. Doing what they want instead of what you know to do is ass kissing in my opinion. You can’t have it both ways Badger. He is either a Dummy or an ass kisser.

          1. So, with the 25 stiffs on this roster, what do you suggest Roberts do differently? I see that changing the lineup changes nothing. These guys have well defined roles and they know what their role is. Playing those roles has the team 9 games under .500. So, stop the platoons you stop the poor play? I doubt it, but, sure, go for it

          2. I think this may be the most inane post I’ve read in quite some time on this blog, and we’ve had some doozies.

          3. What did you expect for a rain out day there Bluto? Not much to talk about……Bellinger now has 43 K’s and Taylor 49……the whiff brothers….

    2. MJ
      Who would have thought after all the back and forth of what will the team do? Trades, call ups, dumpster diving and all the rest, that the Dodgers would play 2 months and BAM the season is over and we start speculating about next year. I don’t think I am up to it. One thing for sure FAZ will not leave you hanging as they will do very little to improve unless they turn over a new leaf. I see no Harper, no Manny, and possibly no Kershaw and no real pickup of solid ballplayers. Who knows? Whoa unto anyone who is a Dodger Fan.

      1. hey they got 2 new guys with the same last name on the same day…that’s progress don’t you think? Sealed a trip to the big dance with these two moves…….NOT! FAZ is the ultimate small minded leader. We have depth! Really? How good is your depth??? We have depth! Ok, are any of these so called depth people MLB ready and can help immediately????? We Have Depth! Alrighty then……..By the way Pack…the chance of you seeing Manny or Harper in a Dodger uni is zip, zilch, nada, no way..

        1. Mr. Norris
          It is hard to be a Dodger Fan when you know FAZ is and will be a small market type of leader and the ownership puts up with it. I have heard waaaaaay more about the cap than I ever heard about getting folks to fill holes that are solid and qualified. What say you?

          1. I have no trouble being a Dodger fan. What I have trouble with is having any faith or belief in this front office and lately the ownership. I am really starting to believe that all they want to do is have a good enough product on the field that will make the selling price astronomical. They have already proven they have little or no regard for the fans that fill the stadium, buy the souvenirs, and spend their money on Dodger Dogs. They proved that by raising ticket prices, in some cases close to 100 percent, not having Dodger games available on TV to most of their fan base, and passing up making deals for players who in my humble opinion would have sealed the deal on a championship before last years run and including last year. They are in it for the money. FAZ has sold them a bill of goods they believe in and you and I and Dodger fans everywhere be damned.

      2. Package

        I wasn’t big on Machado, but if Corey can’t play short anymore, I think Machado would be a good purchase for us.

        Because he is a big rightie hitter, that probably plays short very well, and he is still young enough, a ten year contract wouldn’t be that bad.

        But I truly doubt that will happen too.

        And I think what happens in the off season next year, will really be telling.

        1. MJ
          I don’t think that much will be done and we will flounder much longer than is reasonable. Too bad.

  14. Mark Teixeira threw Cano under the bus saying he was not surprised by the suspension……..team mates tend to distance themselves from that sort of thing.

    1. Nope, but it is 10:00 there….they would not have started it after say 9:30 anyway…..and the field is still very wet.

      1. Michael

        Didn’t they have the field covered?

        They said on the radio the Nats concelled to night, because they didn’t want to waste a start for Scherzer.

        I guess that was a dumb question, because of the outfield.

        1. Not dumb, you just forgot they do not tarp the outfield, and depending on how well the drainage system works, it would still be very slippery out there and the last thing either team needs is an injury to a major star…….and Harper is DC’s biggest.

  15. Here’s an idea – how about Addison Russell? Solid defensive SS with a very FAZ appropriate .250 batting average. He may be available when the Cubs trade for Machado. Of course, he may be in that trade.

  16. Badger
    If Roberts defined the “roles” that the players have then he is a Dummy . If the role of the teams leader hitter is to pull him out early in games or not play him at all then whoever did that role is a Dummy. I am blaming Roberts as I feel he does the ingame managing. I may be wrong but that is what I think. If the role of managing the bullpen is to pull starters early and then burn up the bullpen falls under the manager then he is a Dummy in my opinion. All 25 guys are not stiffs but not playing the better players or pulling guys out for no reason is Dumb. He should also try and use the same lineup each day. There is a big difference between hitting 2nd and 8th or 3rd and 7th. Roberts is not doing a good job in my opinion.

    1. We are at this amount of money, because all of those terrible pitchers they signed, and why did they resign Forsythe and give him a raise, and why didn’t they take Joc to arbitration, if money was so tight?

      Neither one of these guys, deserved a raise, in fact, they are lucky to still be on this team, with their lack of production.

      Those last two moves, don’t make any sense at all?

      A good sports writer, would have already asked the front office, about these two moves, because like I already said, those two moves, don’t make sense from a team that is trying to count every penny they get closer, to the luxury tax.

      I was watching the MLB replay of the games earlier in the day last night, and I saw Brett Anderson calling his trainer, and manager, from the mound, because his arm was hurting him.

      How many teams are going to continue to take a chance on this guy?

      He is making very good money, for very little work or production.

      1. I can try to make sense of them, but it ain’t easy.

        This may seem like semantics, but it’s not. They didn’t resign Forsythe, they activated his option.

        The reason? They may have felt they need a 2B and it’s better to get cost certainty from the option than trust the market?

        As for Pederson, it’s obvious he has two things going for him:
        1. Some people in the organization must still really like his potential.
        2. The org obviously thought Kemp would be tradeable. In that case, Pederson’s value is much higher.

    2. Yeah, I understand what you’re saying. I see it a bit differently. Our “best” hitter has had some injury issues over the years, beginning when he was here. I understand being cautious with him, I would be too and have said as much. I want Kemp rested and ready in September. What I don’t understand is the sub we have for him is Pederson. I suspect management might prefer Toles or Verdugo, but clearly neither of them is ready. If Verdugo had come up and gone Bellinger on the league, problem solved. He did not. Pederson just looks lost, hitting .143 over the last 14 days.

      By roles I mean by now this team knows what their job is on this 25 man roster. With only a few exceptions, everyone on this team is a platoon player. Starters go 5, the bullpen goes 4, position players rotate. That’s how Friedman and Zaidi design rosters. It is what it is.

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