First off, I would like to apologize to Ross Stripling and his family for the steaming pile of crap that Andrew Friedman thinks is the Dodger bullpen. Ross you did great and you deserved a better fate in that game. It’s too bad that you couldn’t have at least gotten the win. You have a long and successful career ahead of you.
Of course I understand the Dodger’s decision to take out Stripling at 100 pitches with one out in the bottom of the eighth inning of the Dodger’s latest disaster last night. The Dodgers made a prudent move taking out Stripling when they did. He was tired, he’s had Tommy John surgery, the season is young, there’s no reason to risk his arm for a game in April. I get it. It was the right move. It just didn’t feel like the right move.
That’s not what I am most upset about though. What we should be talking about is the Dodger’s terrible bullpen. The problem was never addressed during the winter. It was just quietly swept under the rug with more cheap reclamation project acquisitions. Oh here’s Louis Coleman for you. Hey guys we signed one of the worst pitchers ever! Joe Blanton! Enjoy!!!!
Joking aside, the bullpen was never fixed. Besides Kenley Jansen the rest of the relievers are average at best. Maybe it’s not moneyball arrogance, but more moneyball neglect? The club had to have known that removing Stripling from the game for anyone other than Kenley would mean a certain loss.
Ok so screw it then. If that’s the case then you might as well just let Kike Hernandez pitch the bottom of the eighth. Because we all knew that bringing in anyone other than Kenley would result in the game being blown right then and there. The proof is in the results.
Dodgers @ Giants
Game time- 1:05 PM –TV-SNLA
Part of the problem with the Dodger bullpen besides all of the mediocrity is that there is no long man. We saw how much of a problem that was in the Dodger’s 12-6 loss in game 1. Without a long man or someone to come in and give them some innings during a game in which the starter doesn’t go deep, the club is left with a bunch of average one inning guys. You burn through the pen quite quickly when that happens. The lack of a second left hander is another problem.
Meanwhile the sun continues to shine for the Giants. Everything they do turns up roses. Everything they touch turns to gold. Every ball they hit drops in, every fly ball they mash leaves the yard. Every pitcher hits their spot, and every guy they call up from the minors hits like Hank Aaron. It’s disgusting, but it really demonstrates the Giant’s ability to play under pressure. Something the Dodgers seem unable to do. New manager, same bullpen, same result.
Kershaw vs. Giants
Bumgarner vs. Dodgers
|Scott Van Slyke||31||26||9||1||0||0||0||5||8||.346||.452||.385||.836||0||0||0||0||0|
Today’s match-up is the ultimate Clayton Kershaw vs. Madison Bumgarner heavyweight fight. The first such fight of the season. It’s sure to be a great pitching duel. As long as the bullpen stays far away from this game then we may have a chance to see the Dodgers win one game of this series.
I won’t be there to watch this afternoon because of work. Maybe it’s a good thing that I step away for a day and take a breather. I can only take so many of these deflating disastrous losses to the Giants. I better come home and see that Kershaw shut them out. Please Clayton, for our sanity and mental health, please go 9 innings.
Oscar will have the recap for you guys, so make sure to check back in over here after the game.