It Feels Like The Dodgers Lost The World Series all Over Again as Houston Pummels Dodgers

Picard wearing Dodger hat

Sometimes I look for comfort in baseball and sometimes it doesn’t give you any comfort in return. Saturday night was one of those kinds of nights for the Dodgers. The Astros pummeled the boys in blue on Saturday evening at Dodger Stadium by a 14-0 score. The game was close through the first six innings with the Dodgers only down 1-0 until the Astros scored four runs in the top of the sixth and seven more in the seventh. It never felt like the Dodgers had a chance.

Basically stating, the Dodgers are simply not that good. They’re not nearly as good as last year. The World Series rematch between the Dodgers and Astros has not turned out like we wanted. Last October when the two clubs matched up they were both baseball behemoths. The Dodgers had won 104 games and bulldozed their way through the National League playoffs. The Astros had won 101 games and scored 896 runs in the regular season. It was a battle of two equally strong clubs that ended with Houston winning by a single game.

This time around in 2018 the two clubs are separated by nine games in the standings but it looks as if the Astros are ahead by 30 games. Tonight’s contest was noteworthy for the atrocious debut of John Axford, the Dodgers lone pitching acquisition at the non-waiver trade deadline. Axford allowed six runs on three hits while only retiring one batter. Thank moneyball for another ineffective journeyman reliever.

Poor Kenta Maeda gave it his all and kept the Dodgers in the game through six innings. Up until the sixth inning Maeda had allowed just a second inning home run to Marwin Gonzalez which put the Astros up 1-0. The score remained there through the first five innings as the Dodger bats once again shutdown against Lance McCullers. It was like the Houston pitching had a lockjaw on the Dodger offense. At least we know that Maeda is a dependable option that will give the Dodgers a decent start at the least. He’s someone that can be counted on. On Saturday night he just ran out of gas.

Astros    14 13 0

Dodgers  0 3 0

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LP-Maeda-7-7

HR-Gonzalez-9-Reddick-12

http://gty.im/1011205118

The Astros scored four runs in the eighth and seven unanswered runs in the top of the seventh. In that sixth inning former Dodger troublemaker Josh Reddick sparked the rally with a double  into left center field. Maeda had pitched very well but it was clear he was losing it. Dave Roberts wanted him to get through the inning so badly that he ignored logic. After a walk to Alex Bregman the game continued to slip away from Maeda and the Dodgers. Yuli Gurriel doubled in both runners and gave the Astros a 3-0 lead. Gonzalez was intentionally walked and Tyler White’s double scored another run to put Houston up by a 4-0 score which seemed insurmountable. Reddick’s three-run home run in the seventh inning was the lowlight for the Dodger faithful.

That’s because the Dodger bats (going with an all right handed lineup for some reason) went to sleep and never woke up. McCullers had entered the game with an ERA of over 9 over his last three starts. The Dodgers managed only two hits against him across four innings before the right hander had to leave the game early after suffering an elbow injury. The Astros then used five different relievers to shutout the Dodgers. The boys in blue had just three walks and a Manny Machado single from the fifth inning on. The Dodgers scored 21 runs on Thursday night versus the Brewers and have scored just once since then.

To make matters worse Alex Wood was placed on the disabled list and we had to watch Zac Rosscup pitch this evening. Oh and the Dodgers are back in second place. Things are rosy. The Dodgers look to get swept on Sunday afternoon with Walker Buehler taking the mound. Houston will give the ball to Gerrit Cole who will undoubtedly throw a shutout.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda's Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic Cheap MLB Tickets

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38 thoughts on “It Feels Like The Dodgers Lost The World Series all Over Again as Houston Pummels Dodgers

  1. Maeda’s all is insufficient, Scott. It’s not like he stood in there and didn’t contribute to the mess. He is the one pitcher that I think belongs in the bullpen come playoff time, not as a rotation pitcher.

    Axford was almost as tragic as Kike on the mound. What a horrible introduction to the fans. But he was certainly not responsible for the disaster that was this game. It seemed to come apart with a simple ground ball that Maeda had a play on if Kike did not interfere with him trying to catch the ball. Kike saw the inevitable collision and did nothing to prevent it. He should have covered 1B and let Maeda try to throw the runner out. Runner was safe. Then Taylor missed a fly ball in CF. He seemed to have misjudged it. Why an error wasn’t called is a bit of a mystery to me.

    Plays like this show me that the Dodgers are not mentally prepared to play and when you play a team like the Astros, you have to be at your best because they are very good and going to make you pay for all your sins. No runs on 3 hits!! Yesterday, they had 4 hits and 1 run. How do you even stay competitive with performances like this? In the NL, it’s because the teams are not top shelf and you can get away with mediocrity. Against the AL, not gonna happen. The Dodgers have major work to do on themselves but it seems no one knows what work is to be done? They obviously have problems and they seem to be mental to me. They are not prepared, not focused. The will to win is an important element in professional sports. Without it, no cigar. It’s not like we lack talent. No one can say that. Kemp and Bellinger seem lost. So does Muncy, Barnes, and Hernandez. Where is the heart of a champion? I don’t see one. Where is the will to win? I don’t see it. They seem so nonchalant about games. They are talented enough to win games without improving themselves much.

    We can blame this game easily enough on our pitching, but that doesn’t even begin to tell the real story about the bats and the schizophrenic play from game to game. Which team will show up is getting to be a regular question that I ask myself daily, not whether Roberts is going to prevent us from a win by resting Kemp or Dozier. That should not prevent this team from giving a great effort every night. It’s time the players stepped up and took the responsibility for winning and losing.

    1. Jeff

      Taylor didn’t miss that ball because he misjudged that ball, and nobody on this team, would have got as close to that ball that Taylor did.

      1. He went for it, gotta admire that. The safer play would have been to keep the runners from advancing another base. Had he done that, it would have saved a run and we only lose 13-0.

      2. The moment it happened I said to myself that Bellinger would have made that play because of his speed and length and maybe Puig. I’m willing to admit that I may be wrong, but……

        1. Jeff

          Taylor is faster then Puig, but really that was the first time Taylor had played center in a while, but even Cody, or Puig, would have trouble judging that ball off the bat.

          Because the hitter took a big swing, but it was off the end of the bat.

  2. Teams with the best pitching is who you see in the playoffs, that’s a problem.

    Roberts, ah fug it, never mind.

    Assford, is another great acquisition by this FO. A little known fact I found in my research, Assford’s legal name is Darvish Sucking Assford, who would have thunk it? I can see why Assford was available and why his former team’s front office were laughing their asses off when he was seen carrying his belongings out of his former clubhouse. “Don’t let the doorknob hit you in the Assford on your way out!” was said to be echoing in the hallways as he left the clubhouse.

    I told y’all from the start of this season it was going to be a very rough ride and nothing has changed my assessment.

  3. Kike’s play reminds me of the Bellinger over-reach in Game 7.

    We haven’t played the Red Sox, Yankees or the Indians, mind you. Now that we’ve seen what a real WS contender looks like, I think I will go back to my beers. No more kool-aid for me. (Or rather, I’m going to the forum blue and gold kool-aid instead).

    1. YF

      The Astros didn’t have their two best players in their line up, so this is even worse then that!

      And I believe the Red Sox lead the Yankees by 8 games, or 8 and a half games now.

  4. I’m looking forward to what Chip Kelly can do with the Bruins. Also, the Rams should be fun to watch.

    The Dodgers? Well, sometimes they just don’t hit. Not that it would have helped much last night.

    That is one of the few teams I think would give the Dodgers trouble over a long series. There are others.

    Axford and Rosscup aren’t Brandon Morrow-esque pickups. The Dodgers throw a lot of darts, some miss. In fact, looking over the hundreds of transactions since October of ‘14, most miss. But, you keep throwing enough darts, one or two will hit the bullseye.

    I’m getting tired of filling out name and email each time I come in here. The site doesn’t remember me. This is the only place that happens. Any suggestions?

  5. Been on the road. I was listening until the meltdown and then I shut it off so I was spared most of the massacre. It is telling that a team that scored 21 runs and hit 7 homers just a few days ago, and then is totally shut down the next couple of days, is a very inconsistent team. The big guns are slumping, the pitching staff is headed for a hospital ward and they pick up John Fricken Axford at the dead line? I had no internet for a few days so I missed that one. What happened to Iglesias of the Reds? Last I heard he was their main target. Dozier seems revitalized with a contender, lets see how long that lasts. Machado has been mediocre with the bat since he came over, I expect he will get better. Barnes needs to be sent down. Both Farmer and Gale are raking at OKC. Kemp is in his first real slump of the year. But Matts a pro, he will figure it out. They can still maybe get some help before the Sept cut off for playoff roster guys. I am glad they finally read the writing on the wall and dumped Forshyte.

  6. Well I swore I wouldn’t do it but I was looking for some chatter on our minor league system and I I know TBPC has some and AC always gives updates so, I read both sites. And at LADT not one voice asked the cogent question -if were so flippin deep how come there is nobody there that can help plug the obvious holes in this roster.” Nobody asks because the obviously answer would contradict the honchos over there.

    Depending on where you look our system is ranked from 7th to 11th in MLB. Apparently the different rankers aren’t sure what to make of our lower leaguers, but it seems clear to me none of the pitchers are ready to come up and get outs. So we go with guys like Axford and Grosspup. BR has us at 11 with 3 Tier 1 players, Verdugo of course who is blocked, and 2 catchers. Toles isn’t mentioned and there are no pitches ready to get outs this summer.

    So what to do?

    We did it already.

    I guess we could make a claim, but anybody on August waivers will likely not fit under the cap. I think we just groin and bear it.

    Kemp and Muncy both need some jacuzzi time. Call up Verdugo and…..

    1. Badger

      Toles isn’t mentioned because he is not considered a prospect anymore, because he has to much major league time.

      This is the same thing every time, if a pitcher pitches well enough, these average hitters don’t hit enough, and they don’t do the things to make the offense more productive.

      The whole team can’t be in a slump, and this is about the whole team.

      Without Turner being Turner, this team doesn’t have a chance.

      They might hit more today, because Cole is primarily a fastball pitcher, but most of this team doesn’t hit off speed pitches.

      And there was no reason to put Kike at first, he is so out of place, he should never be playing first, in a series like this.

      Cody with his defense alone at first, makes the rest of the infield better.

      And Kike doesn’t hit off speed pitches either, so why go out of your way, to put Kike in this line up?

  7. Stupid trade proposal of the day…
    How about Maeda and Kemp to the Yankees for Stanton? It’s stupid because Maeda would never clear waivers with his low salary. No sweat for Kemp and Stanton for their big money. Yankees need pitching and Kemp could be of some use to them or flipped to another club. We might even stay below the Luxury Tax bite. Don’t get too excited, I’m just trying to generate comment.
    Your software is still different from what it used to be , Scott, someone changed it… Please revert, some posters may leave because of the posting difficulty, and you can’t afford that.

    1. Yankees are on their way to 100 wins. Why mess with that? I wanted Stanton a while back, FO had other ideas. The ship done sailed. Not a bad plan though. I’ll bet Stanton finishes stronger than Kemp.

      It would appear the goal is not to be the best team in baseball this year. There’s a strong possibility we won’t even be the best team in the National League. The goal is very Kasten, make the playoffs and hope like hell it goes right.

      It’s my opinion that ranking systems should include everyone playing in that system. It’s different than rating prospects. Who is there that can help win games NOW? Apparently nobody.

      Now excuse me while I fill out my name and email address…. again

      1. Badger

        The Red Sox lead the Yankees by 8 games now.

        I guess it is better to be able to score runs, more then just one way.

  8. Toles and Verdugo both hit in the only runs yesterday, but Verdugo hit a run in, without a hit, he must have just put the ball in play.

    But since Verdugo got a walk, his OPS still goes up, as much as Toles’, who actually got a hit, that hit in a run.

    My problem isn’t with Verdugo, because I give him credit just for putting the ball in play, to get the run in.

    Some of the players on the major league team, have trouble just putting the ball in play.

    It is rewarding a player the same for a walk, as a hit.

    The player who actually got a hit, should be rewarded more, then a player who walks, and even more, if their hit, hits in a run.

    1. It’s rewarding a player for not making an out MJ. I know you don’t approve of how OPS is evaluated, but it does have merit. A walk ALWAYS results in a baserunner and not an out, while putting the ball in play results in an out, and no baserunner, about 75% of the time. I’m with you on putting the ball in play instead of a strikeout, but walks are a good thing and should be valued.

      There’s also the gdp to consider. We are above league average in that stat. We are also above league average in strikeouts, but lead the league in walks. So, walk don’t hit? I often don’t know what to make of this team. I watch every chance I get because I know they are capable of some real excitement. I also know they are capable of some real bad theater. Last night was an example of the latter.

      1. Badger

        I know all of that.

        I am not saying walks are not a positive, but they don’t do the same as a hit, so why are they valued the same?

        Walks are always decided by a pitcher, and hits are almost always, because of the hitter.

        The question is why aren’t hits valued more?

    2. MJ, every coin has two sides. “Putting the ball in play” as you put it, quite often also means making an out. And we only have three of them to spend each inning. So you’re riding a lame horse, because sometimes taking a walk is better than “putting the ball in play” every time. Sometimes the guy taking a walk brings up the next hitter who just might get a hit, but even if he just “puts the ball in play”, that might now score a run– or even two- or at least move a runner closer to scoring. So, in my opinion, a walk is usually better than a “productive out”. A walk may not always instantly improve things but it never does bad things or shut down an inning.

      1. Jonah

        I just don’t think a walk should be valued the same as a hit, because they don’t do the same things, especially if runners are on base.

        And walks depend on the pitcher, not the hitter.

        But I understand walks are more likely then hits, especially deep in a count.

        But if every hitter we’re more worried about their odds, and always went with their best odds, and took a walk, who would hit in runs for the team?

        I know that will make a player’s numbers look better, but sometimes it’s about the team, and the win.

        But if a team can’t get hits when runners are in scoring position, they have to find other ways to score runs, like productive outs.

        Because the productive outs, gets runners closer to scoring, and can get runs in, too.

        This team makes a lot of outs from strike outs, so why not make contact, and move the runner up, or in?

        Although I know that can cause some hitters to hit into a double play, if they are not waiting for the right pitch, to hit.

        1. I’m absolutely certain every batter knows hits are better than walks and would choose them 100% of the time. The ONLY time a “productive out” is better than a walk is when it is a sacrifice fly or a squeeze bunt. And how many of those do we see? I am certain that FAZ’s statistics will tell us that taking that walk is the best play an overwhelming majority of the time.

          1. Jonah

            Your absolutely right.

            Saber metrics don’t encourage players to put the ball in play, it is all about the odds.

            They don’t even value RBIs, if a hitter, hits in runs, at a high percentage.

            Nomar laughed about that the other day, on the Dodgers pregame show.

            I am not saying everything about saber metrics is wrong, but they are not right about everything.

            Some of the things they have done in baseball for a while, has been right, too.

  9. Some people on “the other blog” campaigning to hire Sciosia this fall when he leaves the Angels. They are finally wising up and realizing that Roberts is a terrible manager. Well, since he is just FAZ’s mouthpiece, they must share that adjective. On his own, Roberts just might manage better. On the Sciosia thing, can you imagine what he would say to FAZ if he offered him a job as his sock puppet? Censored for sure….

  10. In the “misery loves company” theme, they are starting to complain about their sign-in data not being remembered on the other blog as well… Since Timmons started both blogs and both use Word Press software as well, it is likely Word Press is to blame for our misfortunes and that is where Scott should direct his inquiries….

      1. I was given to understand that he owned both websites but sold this one to you. And that was not an allegation against your friend. Since I believe he is having the same problem, I suspect the origin is with Word Press, neither of you. Don’t know how you could misread that.

          1. I think it is a security thing Word Press is instituting. Their lawyers probably advised it…..

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