A star is Born in Battle of Claytons

The Dodgers had their best pitcher on the mound in Clayton Kershaw facing the Dodgers achilles heel in a left hander named Clayton Richard.  Petco park is looking  more like a home game for the boys in blue these days. The game started off slow with Kershaw on the mound overmatching the Padres. The Dodgers right handed lineup had to figure out Richard and his funky delivery.

In the fourth inning the game finally picked up.  Justin Turner singled followed by a walk by Franklin Gutierrez.  Of course the man of the rookie phenom Cody Bellinger singled in a run.  Yasiel Puig singled later in the inning to collect an RBI.  Dodgers took a 3-0 lead.

In the top of the 5th, Kiki Hernandez doubled in two runs to give the Dodgers a 5-0 lead and you figure the game was over at that point. The Dodgers knocked Richard out and to no one surprise Kershaw won the duel between the Claytons. Franklin Gutierrez left the game with an apparent minor injury. Later confirmed to be hip tightness.  Another DL stint I bet.  Kershaw was overwhelming the Padres for 7 innings.

In the 8th inning Kershaw allowed a solo shot to Ryan Schimpf who actually has hit Kershaw well.  The Padres should’ve started Schimpf.  In the ninth with the game well in hand a moment occurred for the Dodgers and a young phenom.

Cody Bellinger who hit two homers yesterday, then proceeded to hit a grand slam.  That slam cemented his hot start and his knack for dramatics.  His bunts to get on base show his mental acumen  for the game.  Bellinger is here to stay. The Dodgers have to make room for him. This weekend in San Diego a star is born.

Weather permitting we will see if we have a game tomorrow. The Dodgers won a laugher 10-2. Kershaw rebounded from his bad start against the Giants. He improved to 5-2 on the year.  The Dodgers will go for a sweep tomorrow if they play a game.

 

James Moya

James Moya

Hi I’m James Moya. I am an avid Dodgers fan. I graduated Cal State Fullerton with a Bachelors in Communications. I used to freelance at the San Bernardino Sun. I’m excited about this opportunity to write for LA Dodger Report to gain experience. I’m a straight shooter on my opinions and I hope to get some good conversations going. My dream has always been to report on the Dodgers because Baseball is the National Past-time. I hope you enjoy the ride with me.

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65 thoughts on “A star is Born in Battle of Claytons

  1. Elsewhere:

    Chase DeJong went 6IP, 4H, 1ER on a homer.
    Frankie Montas got his 1st win! Pitched the 9th. 1K, 1BB
    Peraza is back under a .6OPS after going 0-5. He’s still too slappy for me.

  2. I don’t think anyone would even consider sending Bellinger down now. Which brings up the unsolvable problem of what to do with Agon. I don’t think there is a trade out there, we’re going to have to use him till the end of next season, which means playing Bellinger in the outfield. Which means trading one of Puig, Toles, or Pederson, They should have a market, but whom do you let go? My inclination is Pederson.

    1. Jonah

      I think this problem will be worked out itself.

      We are all happy that Bellinger is doing well, but we also know he isn’t going to be hitting like this for long, because of the adjustments, that pitchers make.

      And when that happens, hopefully Agone will be feeling better by then, and he will be able to come in, and add his good bat.

      Because Agone’s bat, is still better then a lot of the players on the team, when he is healthy.

      He can still be an important RBI guy for us, and he will be a great mentor for Bellinger, too.

  3. Jonah

    I agree with you it is Pederson. At best he is a platoon player. Toles needs to play every day. I do not know why he is taken out against lefties.

    1. Idahoal

      I do think that Toles has earned the chance to play everyday, so Roberts should give him some starts aganist lefties, to see how well he does.

      Because he is having better at bats, and doing well, in tough situations.

      He could take more walks when he can, but sometimes the best pitches, are early in a count.

      But I do still think this roster problem will work itself out.

      1. Last 7 days .353/.389/.471 split in 18 PA’s. Last 14 days .286/.318/.500. Yeah, he should play. But maybe not against LHers. If Gutiierrez can play, he hits against them.

  4. Peraza is not for everyone Bluto. He’s a 23 year old who plays 4 different positions, runs at the speed of light, and can bunt. I accept that FAZophants don’t value speed, hate bunting, and generally look only at OPS, but with a mere 380 at bats in the Majors I look for him to improve. You don’t. Just a difference in philosophy.

    If AGon can get healthy he still has value. Trades of contracts happen some in MLB. It could happen if Gonzalez heals. If he doesn’t we just add those numbers to the bone pile. We’ve had a long list of retained contracts for some time now. According to sportrac we are still paying Guerrero, Olivera, Kemp, and of course Crawford. In spite of a certain pompous blogger’s wailing’s about payroll, the Dodgers can afford it.

    It’s good to have the Padres in the NL West. And, it’s fun to see the giants floundering.

    When you can score 10 runs on only 8 hits? Yeah, it’s good to play the Padres.

  5. They won’t trade anyone any time soon. Fringe guys maybe or a minor leaguer or two, but a major trade off the 40 man? Doubt it. Closer to the deadline maybe. Pederson seems the logical choice, but he has had less than 70 at bats, was injured and yesterday was his first game back. You guys are way to anxious to trade one of the better outfielders in the game. That’s why I think if he is traded at all it will not be until later in the season. He improved last year in the second half, and he can improve now. The first trade candidate is obviously SVS. They can use his spot on the 40 man roster. Gonzo may be on the DL longer than 10 days, nobody knows, but you can bet, there is not going to be a major deal made in May.

  6. Makes sense Bear. You don’t trade young Major League talent, unless you get same in return. But knowing FAZ, they’d likely trade him for a 36 year old on the DL. There is precedent.

    1. Yeah, the Brewers are still trying to trade Braun. But I hope some sanity reigns in there and they keep the kid. He is fun to watch when he is hitting and has serious power.

  7. What’s the overall mood in Dodgerland? Bellinger helping turn some frowns upside down?

    Obviously the Giants are just a total train wreck. It is time to conceive trades of Johnny Cueto, possibly Brandon Belt, and anyone worth a lick that can help this organization rebuild/retool. The future is not bright unless they can get an influx of young talent. Giants have been losing a lot longer than the start of the season. Over their last 100+ games, their winning % is actually less than .400.

    1. Bellinger makes everyone smile, and even though he is a breath of fresh air, he is not the total solution to the doldrums. Just a beginning. The Giants are not going to trade Belt, they just signed him to a long term deal. Cueto would be a hard sell because of his opt out clause at the end of the year. Nobody is going to give a lot for a 4 month rental.

    2. Pretty positive, if you’re a positive person.

      Team is close to first place with only 2.5 hitters in the lineup, with Kershaw still in not-peak form. Forsythe hasn’t contributed yet, neither has Grandal or Puig. Beyond that, the farm system is really in strong form and the rotation is actually over-staffed.

      At some point the lineup will round out, and there’s plenty of prospects to trade from.

      The other side of the bed? Forsythe may never get healthy. Gonzalez, Puig and Grandal may never produce again. The rotation is a jack of all trades, master of none collection. The farm system is just that, a farm system.

      I’m a happy guy, so for me it’s a good time to be a Dodger fan all around.

      1. Puig has contributed.

        One problem which is fixed was keeping SVS and not breaking camp with Chris Taylor. We gave away a bunch of games with a very poor platoon squad.

  8. They aren’t going to find any takers for Wally Pipp, they will have to give him away. He has more value than to be a give-away, if healed he will have spot duty at first and come off the bench to pinch hit. Don’t look for Wally to be rushed back from the DL.

    1. You have a valid point there. If he was hitting like he had in the past it would be a hard sell.

  9. No one knows what lurks in FAZ’s mind. This is one FO that is very hard to predict. They have made moves that boggle your mind, and when you think you might have them figured out, well they do something again that has you scratching your head. They have a real quandary now. Bellinger was brought up due to injury, about the same thing that happened with Arroyo in SF. 10 days and he is back in OKC was the idea. Gonzo’s injury has kept the door ajar, and the kid stepped up his game and has more RBI’s and homers in 11 days than most of the teams so called starters. He is tied for the team lead in homers, and he is right behind Turner, Seager and Puig in RBI’s. He has flashed some leather in the field, and not made a bunch of rookie mistakes save for the ill fated DP try the first game of this series. So, do they send him down when Gonzo is healthy? Or do they send someone else down. Some have suggested trading Pederson, which in my humble opinion is stupid. Pederson has options left, and he is only 25. Send him to OKC to continue work on his swing and approach. Bellinger has been playing CF, he could easily slide into that slot and also be here when Adrian needs a day off. They have other problems. An everyday non platoon 2nd baseman would be nice. Taylor to me fits that bill nicely. At least until Forsythe gets back. Also, though it is a sad thing for me, Utley needs to go. Either retire, or get DFA’d. I know Chase wants to continue playing, but at this point he is not even close to being productive. He has hit more weak grounders than line drives and has struck out a lot more than I remember him doing. His mentoring aside, he is not worth a roster spot. The BP has been pretty solid, but there are 8 relievers out there. Playing with a 4 man bench is not the best way to go. It limits your options late in a game, especially if you go extra’s. We will see if the rotation can work itself out, but only CK and McCarthy seem like the best bets to go more than 5. Maeda reverted the first game to that 5 inning guy again. It this keeps up they will need a 10 man bullpen. Oh yeah, can somebody find this team a catcher that can hit”???????

      1. Wish he could, and I made one small mistake, Toles is up there in RBI’s too with 15. Will Smith is tearing the cover off the ball at Rancho, but still 2 years away. Wilson has 5 homers down at OKC.

        1. Yes Toles is second on the team in RBIs, one more then Turner, since I don’t believe that Turner hit a run in, in yesterday’s game.

      2. AGon has been making contact. The same cannot be said for Utley. Adrian’s swing is being restricted by injury. Utley’s swing is a distant memory.

        Bellinger will not continue at this pace. Nobody does this for a full season. Even Trout doesn’t do this, and he’s the best baseball player on the planet. If Adrian heals, he has to play, and I suspect Bellinger becomes an outfield platoon piece. If he doesn’t heal, it’s an easy call. Bellinger steps in at first and the new era begins. Can’t wait for all those FAZ picks and trade pieces to put us over the top.

        If we could play the Sadres every day, we’d be in first place by this time next week. We do have 4 more against sub .500 teams, and the Rockies get the Cubs, so, maybe we make up ground in the next 4 days. I’m heading to some hot springs tomorrow, then on to Colorado for my yearly trip to prison. Oh goodie.

          1. My stepson was transferred from Fremont to Crowley. btw, since he went in less than two years ago, Colorado has added another 10,000 of its citizens to their prison system. What we are allowing to happen is unconscionable. But, it is who we are now. $80 billion and rising. Coming to a family near you.

          2. Butch and Karen are gearing up for the release of their grandson in June. He is up in Sterling….kid is a mess…

      3. Bellinger was spotted working the parking toll booth before one game and selling DodgerDogs before another game so far since his call up. Maybe he could lend a hand to the front office.

  10. Down on the farm…..SVS is being used as the DH so far. 1 for 8 in that role. Trayce Thompson has raised his average to .103. Max Muncy has been playing 1st base which does not bode well for Ike Davis who is hitting below the Mendoza line. Bobby Wilson has 5 homers, but only 7 ribbies and is hitting .220. Willie Calhoun had homer #4 last night and is at .311 with a .343 OBP. Eibner is down to .259 and has not hit a HR since he went down. Muncy is at .368 with no homers or ribbies, and has a .429 OBP in 7 games. 2 relievers, Broussard and Somsen are yet to be scored on. Broussard has a 14-1 strikeout ratio.

    1. Does it really matter who leads off? Toles or Taylor. Either will likely accomplish the same thing.

      Speaking of Taylor, I noticed that in 34 at bats he has already put up 0.5 WAR. That’s more than 35 home runs, 39 doubles, 89 runs scored and 108 RBI got Matt Kemp last year. And we are asked to take that wins above replacement seriously? Come on nerds, you can do better. Your algo rhythm is out of sync.

      1. WAR is influenced by wRC+, which is influenced by wOBA, and it also factors defense. In spite of the gaudy traditional stats, the actual runs he statistically created were good, but not extraordinary. Factor in his now typically atrocious defensive numbers, and the actual additional wins he contributed relative a replacement player was not that great.

        Rob Deer in 1989 had a near identical WAR, defensive rating and wRC+ as Kemp last year. Home runs and RBIs aren’t the real story when looking at the statistics that predict truly how valuable a player is.

        Taylor is currently playing at at a torrid pace.

      2. Badger actually Toles and Taylor are very different leading off. Toles has a below average OBP when leading off, Taylor is way above average.

        1. Small samples YF. Taylor is hitting better to start the year but his career OBP ain’t all that. I see neither of them better than .333 over the course of a year.

  11. I think everyone is assuming that Bellinger is going to hit like this, all the time.

    And I also think everyone is writing Agone off, way to soon.

    Bellinger won’t keep this pace, and a healthy Agone, is a better bat, then a lot of guys on this team, even with his age regression.

    And Agone’s bat, can be important to this team, when Bellinger is going though a tough stretch, and when tough RBIs, are needed.

    Bellinger needs to be put in the meat of the order, just like Corey was, once he reached the bigs.

    Hitting in the meat of the order is a lot tougher, then hitting toward the back of the order.

    And I am wondering what Corey is going though right now mentally.

    Because it must be hard for him right now, because he is going through a tough stretch, and Bellinger is getting all of the attention, for the way he has produced.

    I know Corey isn’t a guy that wants to be the center of attention, but it has to be hard for him right now, because he isn’t producing like Bellinger is.

    But Bellinger isn’t hitting at the top of the line up, like Corey is either.

    I also think if Taylor keeps on producing, he might end up being our regular second baseman eventually, because Logan has a history, of not staying on the field.

    I think the main problem with Utley, is the fact, that Roberts is starting him to much.

    If Utley was mainly used, as a bat off the bench, most people wouldn’t have a problem with him.

    Remember as much as we have seen Utley struck out, he is good at picking up walks too, in tough situations.

    Hawkeye thinks Utley is just guessing on pitches, and that is why he is striking out a lot, just looking on third strikes, and that makes a lot of sense.

    What did everyone think about the way Kershsw acted, at the end of the game?

    I missed most of the game, but I did see Kershaw throw a fit like an infant on the mound, last night.

    If you didn’t know the guy, you would think he is a big baby, because of the way he acted, yesterday.

    He was pitching against a team, with a bunch of young players, that were just getting their feet wet for the first time, in the majors.

    Kershaw needs to realize that umpires give him more pitches, then most pitchers, and he needs to know, when he should leave a game.

    Roberts shouldn’t allow Kershaw to pitch 8 or 9 innings, every time he starts a game.

    Kershaw needs to have a balance, to make sure he will be strong at the end of the season, or for the post season, if we make it.

    It has been obvious that he doesn’t have it, in those later two innings, because he seems to give up to many HRs, when he is allowed to stay in games, to long.

    That game could have been lost pretty easy yesterday, because Roberts and Honeycutt, were catering, to Kershaw’s demands.

    I don’t think we should trade Joc right now either, but I do think Toles does deserve some chances, to start against lefties too.

    I hope Joc watching what Bellinger has done, will adjust what he does, when he is up to bat.

    And if Joc really wants bunt for hits, he needs to practice this.

    Joc has more means, and people, that will help him, if he really wants to bunt for hits, so I hope he uses these means, instead of just trying to bunt, when he just feels like it.

    Joc takes off way to soon, instead of taking his time, and making a good bunt, down the line.

    Because if Joc makes a good bunt down the third baseline, past the pitcher, he won’t even have to run that fast, because no one is down in that area, when Joc hits.

    And Joc can’t decide to bunt after he has one strike already, because he hasn’t been astute, at bunting yet.

    I do think it is time for Roberts to put Cody at the top of the order, like Mattingly did with Corey, when Corey was first brought up.

    Corey was also hitting at the top of the order in the post season, against those really tough Met’s starting pitchers, when he was first brought up in September, so Cody needs moved up soon, too.

    Because I don’t think Bellinger will be the all around hitter that Corey is, because Bellinger’s swing, in more geared for power.

    1. A lot there MJ.

      Kershaw does get a lot of calls, so not getting an ending inning strike 3 at that point in the game really pissed him off. As for leaving him in, if it were up to me he would be on a pitch count. We are going to need him in October. It feels his stress levels increase every year, and he’s reeling in a lot of miles on that body. Against a hapless team like the Padres, with a horsesh*t ump behind the plate, why leave him in there?

      Joc just needs consistent at bats. Will he get them? Maybe. We have a lot of outfield options now and Roberts seems to like Hernandez in center against left handers.

      Corey will be fine. Maybe he needs rest already too.

      1. I dunno. It’s been two years of Joc and I’m not convinced we’re going to see a profoundly different version or he’s going to change dramatically. It’s like being in a dysfunctional relationship and somehow believing you can change your significant other. It usually does’t happen.

        Speaking of dysfunctional relationships, I wish you’d realize that the preoccupation and constant pot shots directed at some other Blogger Who Can Never Be Named is not the healthiest thing in the world. Hey, I get it. I’m still sometimes bitter over my ex girlfriend, but time to move on.

        I do get a lot out of that blog when I visit. Interesting take recently on the notion of Crawford, Ethier and Guerrero coming off the books after this year and Agon after 18, which creates an interesting possibility regarding Machado and Bryce Harper and the pending free agent market. Still think it’s long shot that FAZ pay big money to either of these guys, but the financial flexibility of not paying for a Greinke or those guys makes the possibilities intriguing.

        1. This FO will never go after Harper. That guy will get upwards of 400 million just watch and see. Machado? Maybe, but Turner will only be coming into the 3rd year of his deal. I have seen a ton of players who have had their first few seasons be like Joc’s, a little patience and it turned around Ozzie Smith when he was a Padre was a terrible hitter. The glove was always their but as Lasorda once said, he could not hit water if he fell out of a boat. The Cardinals hitting coach turned him around. Joc improved the 2nd half of last year, and during spring training Turner Ward tweaked his approach some more. He is less than 70 regular season AB’s into that tweak. He deserves more time. If he is still lousy by July, send him down, he has options left and the kid is only 25. Don’t be in such an all fire hurry to quit on the kid.

          1. It was mentioned that Turner could move over to 2nd if Machado happened to land in Chavez in some dream scenario.

            Think about it, though. Just after this year the team saves 45 million just with Crawford, Ethier and Guerrero coming off the books. Next year we lose Adrian’s 22 million.

            I know the team wants to get below the luxury tax…or at least have it not be so onerous. And at some point Cory is going to need to get paid big bucks, and Kershaw will opt out….but 67 million saved does create some opportunities.

            Greinke’s pitching better, but I’m still glad the Dodgers aren’t on the hook for his stupid expensive contract. Consider that another 34 million a year saved that could go for somebody else.

            …for all the criticism of FAZ, I think one of the compliments you can bestow on them is that they haven’t done any Jason Schmidts or Andrew Joneses…or a Greinke or David Price. They haven’t offered a huge contract that is going limit the team’s financial flexibility going forward, and I think that’s by design. McCarthy’s and Hill’s contracts aren’t that expensive, and they’re not for that long.

        2. Well, the way things are, on Timmons blog, it’s pretty much the same posts everyday, which forces Mark to have to rant from now and then on naysayers (or the realists) and he liberally refers to content here. No one is saying Mark’s blog is not worth going to, but far as I can tell the snipes are going both ways. It’s turned out fine for me as much less personal insults and hissy fits.

          And actually Mark’s coming around to the realist’s point of view on several issues.

          1. No Scmidt’s? We paid Anderson $16 million for nothing, we have McCarthy and Kazmir sucking millions for a few more years, and who knows how costly Hill will be. At least Greinke is pitching.

            Mark’s becoming a realist? I doubt it. He’s been on the wrong side of every issue as long as I’ve known him.

          2. In my observation when someone refers to themselves or their particular camp as realist, then it’s either providing rationalization for inveterate cynicism or narcissism.

            The general theme of his take and the blog’s take is a little pom pom waving, but I don’t think any of it is unrealistic, and yes, there are snipes directed to old nemeses here.

            I think the comments there are generally pretty good because there is less personal sniping. Always Compete is a great addition over there, and the discourse and debate between he and Dodgerrick make for good reading because they don’t insult, but debate respectfully.

            As for him coming over to a “reaslist” point of view, I only really got that with the exasperation with the platooning.

            I just find it curious that there are such deep animosities and divisions over a baseball team. But, politics and factions develop everywhere.

      2. Badger

        I know Corey will be ok, but we do take him for granted, at times.

        About Joc, he got to start and play, in almost every game, the first year he was in the majors, even though, he hadn’t hit above 200 since the first month of the season, so he has had more chances, then a lot of young players have, especially on a team, like the Dodgers.

        And when a young player is told a position is theirs, that gives a lot of stability to young player, so Joc also had that too.

        And you get just as frustrated with Joc, when he doesn’t make the adjustments, you think he should have made, by now.

        And I am sure Michael wants Joc to make those adjustments too, because he likes Joc, a lot.

        But I have never said that Joc should be traded, either.

        And I do agree most hitters need consistent at bats, to hit well.

        That is why most of these platoons, are not good for most of the players, on the team.

        Major League Baseball is hard enough, for even veteran everyday players, let a lone, for young players, learning how to adjust, and hit, major league pitching.

        That is why I agree with Michael, that these platoons, are not the answer.

        They need to go with seven primary players, and allow the part time players, to give players, days off.

        It would be better to give Joc and someone like Toles more consistent at bats, then these part time players, like Kike, to see if Joc or Toles, can hit better, against both lefties, and righties.

        If you don’t give them that chance, you will never know, and using them this way, will eventually make then platoon players, anyways.

        And the team won’t lose much on offense doing this, because it is the everyday players, that play along with these part time players, that are producing most of the offense, on these platoon teams anyways.

        1. Get it right MJ, Joc hit over 200 the first 3 months of 2015. .298 in April, .236 in May and .220 in June. He hit 20 of his 26 homers in those 3 months, that’s what got him on the all star team and in the HR derby which I have always believed was a huge reason he tailed off so bad after the all star game. In his career he has always hit better in April than any other month but his most productive months have been May and June, that’s when he has the most HR’s and ribbies. July and August he falls off dramatically, but he has 50 less at bats in each of those months. He picks up in September. He only has 9 at bats in October, so the stats there are not eye popping. The trouble, and here is the real rub, the FO is into this match up and numbers thing. So Joc and Toles playing everyday against all comers is not going to happen. What is going to happen is that they are expected to perform when they are starting. It is not all Roberts as to who plays. You can bet FAZ has hitting charts saying who has the most success against who. Puig is about the only guy who is going to start most of the time. Toles is going to have Gutierrez to platoon with, and Pederson will be replaced by Kike now and then. Yes, Joc can be exasperating sometimes, but when he is at bat I look at a few things before deciding whether he had a good one or not. A. Is he chasing pitches he has not one chance in hell of hitting. That has been a huge problem in his past. B. Is he swinging too hard. C. taking walks when they are handed to him. D. Making solid contact even if it is an out, something Puig is doing much better this year, and E. Not rolling over on the ball and trying to pull everything, this part includes going to LF when the pitch can be hit that way. Whether you, I or Badger or any other Dodger fan likes it or not, FAZ loves platoons and they are here to stay, except for guys like Corey and Turner…

          1. Sorry Michael I did get it right the first time!

            He hit 298 the first month, and under 200 after that, that is why his over all average, was at 220 at the Allstar break!

            And really Puig has the most at bats against lefties, and he isn’t even hitting above 150.

            And his stats mean more, because we have faced more lefties, then any team in all of baseball, and by a lot!

            And if that was the case with Puig, why is he hitting into double plays, three times more then anyone else, on the team?

          2. No MJ, The monthly averages are based on what he hit that month. That’s why his average kept dropping. If you do not believe me, go to yahoo, search Joc Pederson splits and then check them on the ESPN stats page. It gives his average month by month…Puig is hitting into more DP’s because obviously there have been men on base when he comes up. And have you seen how hard he hits some of those DP outs? Puig is not hitting well against lefty’s, but he is killing RH, go figure, Baseball is not an exact sport, things change game to game. Oh by the way, since the all star game is the 2nd week, the first week and a half in July affected Joc’s average a ton, that’s another reason he was at .220…….

          3. MJ, Here are Joc’s official stats at the all star break in 2015. 300 at bats 69 hits, 20 home runs and 40 RBI’s and a batting average of .230. His April total was 57 at bats and 17 hits, .298 avg, May 106 at bats 25 hits, .236 avg June, 99 at bats, 22 hits, .222 avg. July 89 at bats, 15 hits, .169 avg. August, 50 at bats, 6 hits .120 avg, September, 76 at bats, 15 hits, .197 avg and October 3 at bats 1 hit .333 which shows he was not playing as much in the 2nd half as he was in the first, his post all star stats were 180 at bats and 32 hits. BA was .178….he hit under .200 in the SECOND half of the season, not the first. Last year he hit .236 before the all star game and .260 after. the stats do not lie, you are wrong. The second half of last year he had almost as many homers, missed by 1, 13-12, as he had in the first half in 52 less at bats and he had more RBI’s 35-33. So, in my estimation the kid has shown he can improve with a little patience, and he proved people wrong. You can expect players to have a drop off their rookie year, and in 2015 it happened to him. The first half of 2016 he was having trouble, but he adjusted and had a decent 2nd half. Those are the facts, not fiction its all in the numbers.

    2. I think I brought up a similar criticism of Kershaw up last year during the playoffs against the Cubs. There’s almost a sense of entitlement, and his importance and overall value to the team intimidates Honeycutt and Roberts. I admire his intensity, but he has a little Kobe Bryant Syndrome, as if his sheer will and competitiveness trumps the reality of his limits and what is ultimately best for the team.

        1. He has Kobe Bryant Syndrome? Never heard of it. If it means he thinks a lot of his abilities because he has a ring for every finger of his throwing hand – I don’t think he has it.

          As a 24 year old Pederson put up 3.6 fWAR (129wRC+ for those looking at that) and he did near all of that offensively (3.2) and did it hitting .246 with a 27.3 K%. He knows what side his toast is buttered on and it is swinging for the fences and walking 13% of the time. 25 homers and 26 doubles in 137 games. I don’t want to hear home runs “aren’t the story”. That’s b.s. Home runs and fence denters are what drives the Moneyball bus. He’s not gonna change his approach. An .847 OPS will get him a 9 figure contract…. but not for a few years and that is why the Dodgers aren’t likely to trade him. He’s arb eligible until ’21.

          1. As great as Kobe was, his weakness was his uber drive and ultra-competitiveness. He would often just try to carry the team on his back and will a victory. As a result, he didn’t make his teammates better. Magic was able to do that. Lebron is able to do that. I think that might be one possible explanation for Kershaw’s famous playoff implosions. Maybe he just put so much pressure on himself and was too intense in those key moments that he just overthrew.

            Home runs aren’t the entire story. There I said it. I don’t care if you don’t want to hear it. Cover your ears.

            Joc did better last year, but so far he’s maybe regressed. Sure, it’s early. Give him time, but how long have we been waiting on Puig to turn the corner?

      1. Great observation there, Dodgerpatch. And I think it’s going to get worse as he needs to get that monkey off his back.

        1. I don’t understand how drive and competitiveness can be considered a weakness. If you don’t have it you will never make it.

          I think Grandal is a good example of why home runs are so important to Moneyball in today’s game. He hits .226 but puts up WAR because of his slugging percentage. Pederson is another example. A guy like Maury Wills who plays every day and runs and scores and hits .300, but slugs only .330, and OPS+ 99 will put up the same WAR numbers that guys like Grandal will with far fewer games. For my money I prefer the guy that shows up every day and plays the game like Maury did.

    1. Jonah

      It is raining hard right now, and we are having a thunder storm here to.

      I had to go out yesterday , and get a new phone, my phone stopped holding a charge.

      And as you know, you have to have a phone, so I had know choice, but to buy a new phone

      It is a little bit bigger, and a little more slimmer.

      I didn’t get the top phone because I don’t need one, but I am happy with what I got.

      And phones don’t last much beyond about four or five years, so why pay more, and get the best, especially since I have a computer now, thanks again.

      I just need to find the right table that will adjust to where I will be sitting.

      They do have a lot of different stands.

      1. Most likely your phone battery died. Easily replaced on Ebay for a few bucks. I’ve done that on several of my past phones. My new phone, an LG Aristo, cost me exactly $9.60 plus $30 for my first month’s time use. I sold my old one on Craig’s list same day for $40. When I walk down the street, all the little birdies go “cheap, cheap, cheap”. Still got your old phone? Tell me name and model and I will look up a replacement battery for you…

        1. Alternatively, if you’re leery of working on it, there’s about half a dozen I Phone repair shops in Cucamonga who will be glad to replace the battery for you. It would cost more than doing it yourself but still way less than buying a new one. If you’re emotionally attached to the old phone, and I suspect you are, you might want to talk to them. http://www.servicenerd.com/

          1. Jonah

            But because I couldn’t use my phone, I couldn’t research it, or ask you.

            I found a tray that will sit on my lap, or stand from the floor too.

            I didn’t know if it was my cord or my phone, causing the problem, and they didn’t bring up the battery.

        1. Naturally, they’d rather sell you a new phone. Charge cords about $2, batteries $10 to $15. Still have your phone? It’s worth fixing up as a spare or to sell.

  12. I tend to agree with Patch about the Kobe comparison with Kershaw. It’s spot on.
    I would bet that Corey is liking the spotlight is on Cody and Taylor. He can relax, especially since he is struggling just a tad. This gives him time to adjust without that spotlight.
    As far as Pedersen, wasn’t he going to work big time in the off season on his approach at the plate…. the last 2 off seasons?
    He is too much of a “chicks dig the long ball” player. Maybe seeing how Taylor made a few adjustments a month ago and his success and how Corey makes in game adjustments will sink in. Then again maybe not.
    I am not sold on Toles being the answer in CF, I still want to see how he can adjust mid season.
    Pederson really needs to show that he can adjust. If not I hope he likes Wisconsin in summer time.

    1. Tim

      Very good observation about Corey.

      And I think Patch may be right, about Kershaw too.

      I don’t expect them to give center to Toles, but I think he needs to start more.

      I do think Toles grew more comfortable after he played center, for a while, when Joc was out.

      That is what I feel about Joc to, about the HR thing, but I hope he proves me wrong.

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