Saturday, May 25, 2024
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Dodgers lose Hill and Game in Blistering heat

Fresh off a victory over a left-hander yesterday and three run shot by Yasiel Puig, the Dodgers returned Pedro Baez and Rich Hill from  the DL and sent down Josh Fields and Trayce Thompson. The Dodgers were trying to get their third straight win against Taijuan Walker with Rich Hill returning to the mound vs the snakes.

The Dodgers had an opportunity in the first inning to steal the momentum. With the bases loaded and two outs, Joc Pederson struck out. In the top of the third Chris Iannetta hit a solo shot to put Arizona on the board. Then with the bases loaded Rich Hill walked Jake Lamb to make it 2-0 for the snakes. Rich Hill exited the game after the third inning and was replaced by Ross Stripling.

In the bottom of the Fourth Yasiel Puig continued his hot hitting and doubled in Yasmani Grandal to put the Dodgers on the board. The Dodgers bullpen did a good job of keeping the blue crew in the game. Sergio Romo gave up a single to A.J. Pollack scoring Paul Goldschmidt in the seventh to make the score 3-1 Arizona.

Corey Seager hit a rocket to deep center in the seventh that could’ve started a rally but Gold Glove center fielder A.J. Pollack made a catch while crashing into the wall to put a stop to that. Seager has been hitting the ball hard but into situations where the defense has made great plays to keep him at bay. Archie Bradley, Jorge De La Rosa, and Fernando Rodney of the Diamondbacks shut the Dodgers down the rest of the way.

The Dodgers have been hitting well at home while winning. The Dodgers will conclude this 4-game series with the snakes tomorrow with Brandon McCarthy on the mound facing a left hander in Robbie Ray. Hopefully Robbie Ray wont be Cy Young tomorrow.

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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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.

61 thoughts on “Dodgers lose Hill and Game in Blistering heat

  1. Darn, that’s an expensive blister….With that being said, is it Wood or Stripling??? I’ll throw my Wood hat in the ring.
    Walker pitched well and we cooled off again… We get em tomorrow with Mac !!! EZ- PZ…

  2. Just read Boxout’s long essay on the other thread, and related responses. While the responses are mostly a fun read, so much of the lead off essay is setting up straw men (and woman) and knocking them down.

    First of all just because Friedman says starting pitching is overvalued doesn’t mean we get it. Actually most fans know that is what he thinks – he did not need to say it. Just look at who he’s been signing. As for the rest of the league following suit, well based on 2015 and 2016 FA markets, the starters who GMs and fans think can go 7+ per outing are being paid like everyday All Stars. Those are the ones driving the market and in fact our own FAZ was perfectly willing to sign Greinke to a massive contract that would have hamstrung us for years. It’s all the WAR calculations driving the non-arbitration numbers, and personally I think the WAR numbers for starting pitchers are way too high but what do I know.

    As for GMs imposing some discipline, I’ll believe it when I see it. Today it’s starters’ salaries being too high, tomorrow it’s going to be relievers.

    Anyways I think we, the old fans, are in fact “right” most of the time, as long as we just stick to the team and their shortcomings. Those who criticize bad signings have eaten crow, yours truly included, but I have yet to see any one on on the FAZ side admit they’ve been wrong. On the other hand I see plenty of gloating and then things go quiet when another starter goes down. I am not gloating, I am just saying you don’t see much gloating when Michael, MJ, Badger, DodgerRick, et al, are proven right. They just move on and offer their thoughts on what to do next to fix things. Seeing things to fix does not mean we don’t understand what the FAZ is thinking – the FAZ is in fact very predictable. I would also venture that most GM’s are predictable.

    Speaking of moving on, now we’ve got Rich Hill. Maybe there is a reason over the past century, there have only been a few pitchers who rely mostly on curveballs, as too many curveballs probably leads to blisters? I have no idea, but it is what it is, and whether FAZ knew or did not know this, they’ve traded away some prospects who would collectively be running around Rich Hill in WAR this year. Again, I am not gloating just setting up the problem to be fixed.

    I mentioned before that we need another reliever who can go 2+ innings. Rich Hill may be that 3rd long reliever, and I’d love him to accept that role. He’d be great at it. There’s even an article today intimating that maybe Hill can go 3 innings without the blister heating up. But remember he went back to being a starter after many people he should stick to relieving. So I don’t know how this is going to play out. I’d have a lot of respect for Hill if he accepts his role. He’s being paid a lot of money and he can be flexible for the good of the team. Especially when you’ve got Alex Wood and Stripling pitching on rookie contracts as long relievers and bailing out our starters-in-name-only night in and night out.

    So who takes his spot? Urias, Kazmir? I’d leave Urias in AAA for now, and Kazmir is too much of a crap shoot even when healthy as his stuff sucks (ok Fangraphs gave him the number one top grade on his changeup, but I’d rather have the number 2 change up (Jharel Cotton)). This would never happen, but I would go with Stewart. He’s built like an innings-eater, so let’s see what he does with the role – I don’t think he would be good in middle relief but maybe I am wrong and he excels while Wood gets his shot first. Wood and Striping will get spot starts throughout the year, but keeping them fresh for September and October would be ideal (although we may be getting Buehler and White to help out by then). Anyways, I do hope that we do not trade any more prospects for turn-around projects.

    1. Solid post Yueh.

      Hill threw 54. If he can throw 45 every few days without issue then the pen is a good solution. Stripling, Wood and even Jurrjens and Oaks would be replacements. Urias is on a fixed schedule. I hope they stick to it. If replacements aren’t working, look for a deadline deal. This is a bummer, but not unexpected. I’m sure there are numerous contingencies.

    2. Stewart is on the AAA DL there Yueh. Has been since about a week before spring training ended. He has a forearm strain. Has not even started throwing yet. Wood will no doubt go into Hill’s spot. I respect Hill for what he has done, but I still feel and always will that A. The Dodgers paid too high a price to obtain him, and B. His contract is not consummate with his ability to pitch without injury. He is another of FAZ’s failed injured arm acquisition’s. There is nobody and no way they can ever change my stance on this. I would rather have all 3 of those prospects in my system considering what we got out of Reddick and Hill last year and the obvious problems Hill has now. Just an extension of last year. Mr. Blister was not a wise investment.

      1. I tend to agree with you MN. Maybe FAZ didn’t try to negotiate a better deal with Hill as they were kind of in a corner with the pitching staff in general. Yueh’s post makes a lot of sense, putting Hill in the bullpen.

        Now, we are also seeing a regression in Maeda. He is not able to pitch many innings and gives up too many runs earlly in the game. Same problems as last year. When he can right himself early enough in the game, he’s very good. Dodgers still have a ways to go towards a stable rotation. I do like the bullpen better this year.

  3. Ok and thanks – forgot about Stewart’s ST injury. Hope springs eternal indeed. Now we know neither Ryu or Maeda can be counted to go past even 4 innings. So we need more middle relievers than ever, and guys that can go 5-6. So I am not a fan of starting Wood. He’s been great at middle relief and soon teams will pay extra for middle relief, because they’ve been failing at developing pitchers that can go 7 innings at the minor league level. At some point there will be a small market GM who figures this out and starts developing lesser prospects based on current trends and make a killing (for his/her owners).

    1. Well his 4 seam fast ball has improved greatly, if Wood is not their choice I have no problem with Stripling stepping in there. The kid has nasty stuff. I think it is a little early to slam the door shut on Ryu. He is a competitor, and he is as tough as nails. Do not forget that Masterson and Jurrjens are at OKC, and both have a lot of MLB experience, and Jurrjens had an outstanding outing the other day, so they are options too. No need to rush the kids. Maeda has looked very hittable in all 3 of his starts. He cruises through an inning and the next he gets hit very hard. Something not right there. It looks to me, from what I see with the CF camera, that his control is way off. He is not spotting his pitches half as well as he did last year. There is a reliever at AA Tulsa, Joe Broussard, who is not only lighting up the radar gun, but is also almost un-hittable so far. I think they will DL Hill and bring up a hitter. Because so far the B team looks pretty pathetic on paper. Joc’s average has been dropping steadily, and from what I saw today, he has slipped back into some of his old habits. Pretty sure Turner Ward will address that. Utley has been pathetic at the dish. I am not totally convinced that this scrub thing is what Chase will be able to do. Hernandez and SVS not really hitting all that well, and neither are either of our catchers. I think it is time to cut bait with some of these guys. You also notice that Hatcher has been like the 5th option out of the pen. Okoye Dickson and a couple of others are on fire at OKC. Dickson could take SVS’s spot easily. And he can also play 3rd. Segedin around .280. But I am sure they will wait until they have played at least 30 games before any major personnel decisions are made…….and per Yahoo sports, they are still having dialog with the Brewers about Braun, who I do not want to see in Dodger Blue.

      1. Michael

        I agree with you about Ryu.

        Maeda isn’t really pitching better, then Ryu.

        And I think Ryu will have more velocity the next time he pitches, if it isn’t in that extreme cold weather, like when he pitched in, Chicago.

        Ryu hasn’t pitched once at Dodger stadium this year, and his first start was in Colorado, and his defense let him down, as well, as the offense, so he has had, a tougher schedule, then some of these pitchers, and he is just coming back, so I wouldn’t make a decision on him, yet.

        And you are right about Maeda, he has been the two extremes, from inning to inning, but like you said, he just needs to have better command, so that is fixable.

    2. Here is a breakdown of what the guys are doing at OKC….Jurrjens 1.50 ERA, 1-0 record, 0.67 WHIP with 8 K’s and 0 walks. Masterson is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA a WHIP of 0.88 with 11 K’s and 3 walks in only 8 innings. Oaks is 0-1 with a 2.57 ERA 15 K’s 4 walks and a WHIP of 1.14. Urias is 0-0 in 2 starts with a 3.24 ERA but 6 walks and 9 K’s in 8.1 innings pitched with a 1.44 WHIP> He is far from game ready. The hitters Dickson, 424 avg, 3 HR’s 8 ribbies and an OPS of 1.199.. Bellinger .395 BA, 3 HR’s 11 RBI’s and a OPS of 1.202 Verdugo .378 BA, 0 HR’s 2 RBI’s and a OPS of 1.005, Eibner .333 with 3 HR’s and a OPS of 1.120 and Rob Segedin has been steadily climbing now at .324 with 2 HR’s 5 RBI’s and an OPS of .833. All the other hitters are below .300 Calhoun is at .270. No one has more than 3 HR’s so far and Bellinger’s 11 RBI’s lead the team. The only pitcher with 2 wins is Layne Somsen, a reliever who is emulating Phil Regan and swooping in like a vulture to steal the win. He is 2-0 with a 0.00 ERA in 3.2 innings. Both of the catchers at AAA are not hitting a lick.

      1. It’s my gut feeling that none of the position players will be brought up unless we have an injury. All that were kept on the 25 man are veterans and the team will give them time to work it out. The one exception may be Van Slyke. He needs to do something and do it fast. Pitching is a different story. We just can’t afford continued short starts. Something needs to be done. It would be nice to see 7 out of McCarthy. Any predictions? He’s got 12 in two starts, maybe he can keep going 6 until summer. That would help a lot. Hill and Maeda are troubling.

        1. Badger

          I don’t think they will be bringing anyone up right now, because it is still early in the season, and one or two hits in one game, will change a players stats, in a big way, at this point of the season.

          And Badger, you already said correctly, that it is still to early.

          And I am not so sure, that these AAA guys will produce any better, just playing, part time either.

          All of those numbers that Michael listed on these AAA players, is based on players, that have been playing, everyday.

          These platoons are not giving the players, consistent at bats, except Corey, Turner, Agone, and Puig.

          And Puig has got more consistent at bats, then anyone, on the team, because he has played in every game, and that is probably why he is hitting.

          I understand where Michael is coming from though.

          And I don’t want to see them go with this platoon team all year, like last year, when they were the worse team for offense, in all of baseball.

          Something needs to be done, eventually!

          1. What needs to be done soon is to address the starting pitching. Most here knew there would eventually be problems, I didn’t think it would happen this quickly. I’m not as worried about the offense. It’s basically the same offense we had last year with Forsythe taking Kendrick’s spot. I think we’ll hit. Maybe not lefties very well, but we didn’t last year and it worked out. As long as we have Kersahaw, Seager, Turner and Jansen and the pen, we will be a good team. If Joc and Puig hit, and AGon does what he for, we will compete. Everything that’s happening has been foretold. If ewe have unforeseen disasters, that depth people have referred to will be tested.

          2. Actually MJ, only Bellinger and Calhoun are playing most every day, and Calhoun is the only player who has played in all the games. Dickson has compiled his numbers in 8 games. Most of the players have played 7 or 8 games while Calhoun had played in all 11 and Bellinger in 10. The catchers are hitting below the Mendoza line. But those are just the early numbers. I do not think the Dodgers make a major move of any sort, such as DFA’ing someone or a trade before mid May. 30 games is when I think they will evaluate what they have. I have never seen Gonzo get off to this slow a start. Him and Joc need to provide some power from the left side since their so called cohort, Grandal is doing his level best to match last years BA. And up popped the devil again today, had the Braun rumor once more. Neither team has denied the reports that they are talking. But Bellinger and Puig are definitely not on the table. And if he is traded to LA he would become the everyday LF. That is at least what is being reported. But there is depth in the minors that Milwaukee would like. Might be in the form of a couple of AAA players who are close to being ready. Or lower level prospects. The Dodgers actually have a glut of catchers now, and the 2 highest rated are Smith and Ruiz.

        2. I think he goes 5 2/3rds. Depending on how his fastball is moving. He gets movement it is a pretty good pitch…..I would like to see him go 7 though….hell, I would love to see any of our guys go 7.

    3. YF

      I didn’t even get upset yesterday when Hill was taken out, because I thought he might have just came back, to soon.

      And I just thought next time he is going to have to be honest with himself, , if he isn’t ready yet, and not rush to come back, to soon.

      But then I read that Roberts said they might try him in the pen, that really surprised me, and told me that this situation, isn’t that simple.

      When they signed him, I assumed that they knew more about the situation, then I did.

      I know that last year, Hill had something much bigger, then the usual blisters pitchers get, so I thought the off season, would help.

      I was surprised that they signed Hill, because I thought we had so many young pitchers, that were close, but I didn’t see Hill in the same light as Anderson, Kazmir, and McCarthy, because I thought he had, a higher upside.

      What some people forget when they say that we won last year, without Kershaw, and even with these pitchers the front office signed, is the fact that we might not have won, if we didn’t have our young pitchers, in the minor league system, that stepped up, when all of these other veteran pitchers, were not able to do their jobs.

      So last year, was not something a team should base any model on, because it could have turned out, much differently, and in a bad way.

      And I am not so sure that it is so much cheaper, when you count how much more money, the team would have to pay on insurance, for pitchers with long injury histories, as well, as these pitcher’s salaries.

      And they still have to pay these pitchers they traded for, as well, as the young pitchers, that came up and pitched.

      And they had to pay with prospects, at the trade deadline, in the last couple years too, so it isn’t as cheap, as some, seem to think.

      And even if it is cheaper, what good is it to get a cheaper deal, when you are not going to get the services, that you paid for?

      We had to give up three top pitching prospects last year, because we didn’t have anyone who could pitch like a number one or two pitcher in the post season, like Greinke did, in the previous year.

      I think you may get away with that philosophy with the number four and five pitchers in the rotation, and for back up depth, but I don’t think it is a good idea, to fill the first three spots in the rotation, that way.

      Because you are looking for quality, and reliability, especially with the first three top pitchers, in the starting pitching, rotation.

      And the other top teams in baseball, don’t build rotations that way, only the Royals were able to do that, but even they, didn’t build there rotation, with pitchers, with long injury histories.

      And the only reason they signed average pitchers, for their starting rotation, was because they are a small market team, and don’t have the money, to sign top starting pitchers.

      1. Give me a big 3 rotation anytime, and I will take it. Less strain on the pen, and more consistent starts. Also hard to have a long losing streak when you have 3 guys in there who can really bring it. Unfortunately, we have 1.

      2. Michael

        The players you mentioned, are starting in 80 percent, of there games.

        Unless every team continues, to throw only lefties, our part time players, won’t be starting 80 percent of the games.

        And I think they should try using the almost everyday line up, until they bring, some of those guys up.

        I am not sure that these platoons, are making the team better, in fact, it might be doing the opposite.

        They have been playing Corey, Turner, Agone, Logan, and the part time players, to face lefties.

        Why don’t they just start these other almost everyday players, Instead of the part time players, with Corey, Logan, Agone, Turner, against lefties, and see what they can do?

        It isn’t like the part time players, are scoring the runs.

        1. I agree with you there. I have always thought and pretty much no one can change my mind, that you trot your 8 best out there every night. Lasorda did it. Alston did not. But when you have a quality player at most every position you let them play. But you and I and Badger and a few others all know that FAZ likes the matchup’s. He likes players who are multi-positional guys, and he plays the numbers. Now Dave Roberts might make out the lineup, but don’t anyone think that Friedman and Zaidi do not have any input as to who is out there game to game. You can bet your house they give him graphs and stats that say who matches up best against who. Of course that cannot be done with someone they have not seen, but they will rely on the scouting reports. The Dodgers meet the Giants in about a week. Want to bet that when the MAD BUM pitches, he faces Kike Hernandez? Unless of course they trade for Braun next week. But I would bet dollars to donuts that Kike is in there. Yes, the AAA guys have played only 8 games, but a couple of those guys were raking in spring, including Dickson and Segedin. 2 guys who were hot in spring who are not hitting well are Stetson Allie and Holt. They both are close to the Mendoza line. Holt at OKC and Allie at Tulsa.

  4. Well most likely Hill goes back to the DL. So someone comes up. They will probably just slide Wood back into the rotation. I think they will bring up a position player, or another BP guy until Gutierrez comes off the DL next week. Reports are he is feeling good and said it was not serious. The report on Ethier is not so encouraging. He is not doing any baseball activities yet at all. No one is sure when he will. Stewart is throwing on flat ground now. But still a little more time before he throws off a mound.

  5. Well, I don’t think that the Dodgers are going to take a pitcher receiving $18MM/year and have him pitch middle relief. They will start him if they can and when they can. Last year he managed 20 starts and 110 innings and I assume that the Braintrust didn’t expect much more than that this year but figured they’d get high quality innings to justify his salary.

    Friedman recently commented that starting pitching is overvalued. So the Braintrust hires guys like Hill, Kazmir, McCarthy and Anderson and pays between $12MM and $18MM per season for – what? Maybe pitching is overvalued when the guys that you sign can’t actually, you know, pitch?

    1. The good starters in MLB earn their money. I think the key may be to get them as close to age 30 as you can. If they are yours, you can get the WAR out of them before they get that last contract. You’re right Rick, FAZ wants out of Hill for three years what he got last year. Starting pitchers can get 3 WAR out of 100 innings. If he does that, as ridiculous as it seems, he’s worth the money. Seems odd, but 5 innings 20 times could make $16 million cost effective.

    2. I totally agree Rick. They are not going to pay that guy 16 million a year for long relief….but they will pay it to him to spend time on the DL ala Anderson and this year Kazmir. Report says when Kaz threw 75 pitches the other day his 4 seamer maxed out at 88. Most of his pitches were in the 84-88 range. That is way down from last year. Another concern to me is the lack of power shown by Gonzalez. His hardest hit ball barely made it to the wall. The butter and egg man has had his eggs scrambled.

      1. They probably have insurance on him and will be partially repaid for his salary when he is on the DL, but not when he’s on the roster pitching relief.

        1. Jonah

          You were right about Hill!

          I thought the front office already had his blister problem, figured out.

          Last year he had a blister, that was much bigger in size, then the normal blisters, pitchers get, so I thought the blister he had last year, was an exception.

          And I thought the off season, would help heal that problem, he had.

          And I assumed the front office knew what they were working with, and did there due diligence, concerning this issue, before signing, Hill.

          Especially after all , of these other, signings.

          Wouldn’t you think that too?

      2. Michael

        Yes it is very unlike Agone, but, it has to be because he is injured, still.

        Because this is way more then a decline, from age.

        1. Maybe, maybe not. If his arm is still hurting and he is not getting the proper extension, his best bet is to not try to pull everything and just go with the pitch. I have not seen him do that except for a couple of times. He showed some decline last year. Not like him to hit less than 20 dingers. I am a little concerned about Joc also because the last few games he looks like he reverted to his old swing as hard as I can routine. Hope Turner Ward has a long talk with him. Puig looks locked in. Forsythe making much better contact. Seager is Seager and so is Turner. They are getting about what I expected out of Grandal……not much……Toles had a rough game. And according to Orel, Hill does not have a fully formed blister. He has what you call a hot spot. A very tender spot on the tip of his finger where he grips his curveball, which is his bread and butter, and without it he is beyond mediocre.

          1. Michael

            Yes Toles swung at that high pitch which would have been ball four, and he knew he did wrong, right away.

            But he did hit the ball hard, in his first at bat.

            But I think he would be ok, if he was moved down in the order, like you said.

            I actually think Joc has had, a much harder time.

            Joc is more experienced, and hitting toward the back of the line up, so it is easier for him to work the count, but he isn’t making much contact.

            And he is hitting 160 against righties, and he has had only seven at bats, against lefties.

            And he has to many strike outs, especially for a hitter, that hasn’t hit, with much power.

            Maybe he is trying to work the count to much, and getting into to many two strike, situations.

            Maybe Joc should swing early in his at bats, if he does get a good pitch.

            And actually the last time I looked at Grandals stats, he was hitting about 290 against rightie pitchers, but he isn’t doing the same, against lefties.

      3. Albeit small sample, but I agree.

        Gonzalez’s lack of power is the biggest worry of the early season. I mean a blister cannot be a persistent problem in this medical day and age.

        But if Gonzalez turns into a singles/doubles hitter that’s an issue.

        Friedman was on Los Angeles’ radio, here’s a link:

        He says the blister isn’t as bad as last year, and that they are (and have been) reaching out to tons of doctors and experts. They have tried super glue and pickle juice for those quacks out there.

        As for the lefties woes, Friedman keeps reiterating how 70% of the league is RHP and that the team hopes that Forsythe and Gutierrez as well as the other hitters reverting to past (before last year) form.

        He really says nothing, nothing, is happening on the trade front. It’s too early and too small of a sample size to act on.

        1. Bluto

          I read a long article about blisters at Bleacher Report last year, and there was a lot of good info, in that article.

          Nolan Ryan use to slice off the top of his skin, on his fingers, to avoid blisters.

          It said that the idea is not to get a callous, because that will be on the top skin, and that doesn’t help.

          But once a pitcher removes the top of his skin, on his fingers, blisters won’t form on the skin, right below the top skin.

          And that is why Nolan use to get a knife, and slice the top of his skin on his fingers off.

          And about the front office trying to see what they can find to help this blister issue, shouldn’t they have done this, long before they signed Hill?

          That is way to late, and they should have done there due diligence, before signing Hill, especially after all of there busts, with these pitchers, they have signed.

          There is no excuse for what they didn’t do!

    1. Agree with you there Bluto. Nightengale is nothing short of whacko. I read those rankings and wondered who he was watching, not this team for sure. Also read a story that says the Atlanta Braves are now considered to have the BEST farm system in the majors…….Yankees were second.

        1. Kemp is on the DL right now. Has a strained groin I think. Should be back in Atl’s lineup soon.

          1. I get the idea, but McCarthy and Hill’s 100 whatever combined innings will produce more WAR than Kemp’s 30 and 100.

          2. You and your WAR are as badly out of touch as FAZ and his favored stats. I am more interested in winning games than in amassing WAR. You yourself have pointed out on occasion that it can be as misleading as any other stat. Screw WAR, Kemp would help us win games.

          3. It’s not my WAR. I’m looking at it through my FAZ lense. They actually prefer 100 inning pitchers to a guy who, somehow, with 35 and 108 put up 1 WAR. No one had splained that one yet.

      1. I think that was MLB. They are pretty good.

        White Sox and Padres also up there.

        It helps to tank.

        Dodgers were 6, which is awesome for a team that isn’t tanking or selling at the deadline.

        1. Well we all know the farm is stocked. Lower levels have some pretty good talent too. I went through all the rosters checking their stats. Some of the more highly rated guys like Smith and Ruiz off to terrible starts, but Kyle Farmer is tearing up AA ball.

    2. I think the ESPN power rankings that had the Dodgers at something like #7 was low. The pitching has been outstanding – probably league best, and the hitting, though sporadic, is also among the league leaders. Most power rankings just factor in the teams with the best records and really nothing else. Tim Brown’s power rankings were pretty bad.

      Anderson gave a great ROI his first year, Hill pitched well at the end of last year and shut down the Cubs in the playoffs. It’s a little early to write him off as a bad signing. Kazmir hasn’t done much. Maeda more than earned his money last year. He has a very team friendly contract, so you can’t really argue ROI.

      Price, Greinke, Samardzija have been big ticket busts so far. Scherzer, Lester and Cueto haven’t. GMs don’t lave the luxury of crystal balls, but considering the volatility of starting pitching as commodity, I think I’d want to limit my risk.

      1. Dodger patch

        I wrote this below, but there is no excuse for the front office not doing, there due diligence, with Hill.

      2. Your inclusion of Price in the bust column got me thinking. First, I don’t agree with that take. It’s when I asked myself why it occurred to me; the way WAR is calculated for pitchers is just wrong. Look no further than Price and Hill. Price started 35 games, (most in baseball) pitched 230 innings (6.57 per start) won 17 games, faced more batters than anyone in MLB, and had 3 WAR. Hill, 20 starts, threw 110 (a full inning less inning/start) won 12, and had a 3.8 WAR. That just doesn’t add up. But, it is the reason FAZ signs guys like Hill, McCarthy, Kazmir. This will continue until the math changes.

        1. I’m not sure where you’re getting the 3 WAR from, but Fangraphs had him at 4.5 last year. Yes, he pitched a lot of innings and won 17 games, but his FIP and ERA jumped up from the previous year, and he gave up a lot of homers at Fenway. Hill didn’t pitch as many innings, but the innings he pitched were masterful.

          Looking again at his stats, I don’t think Price was a bust…yet…but they signed him just in time for his velocity to drop at age 30 and for him to now have a balky elbow. They signed him for seven years…ouch!

  6. Here is a new one from Foxsports….per their story, the Dodgers are looking to upgrade their outfield, and while they are considering the Braun trade they may bring up Cody Bellinger to play in the outfield. Since Joc and Toles are both struggling, they like his LH power. They are not sure how he will transition to the majors, but feel he might do well, and since he has plenty of options, it might not hurt to try until they decide on a more permanent course of action. I had not seen that before…

    1. Michael

      The only problem is that Bellinger started to struggle, when we got to the later part of spring training, when we were facing more major league pitchers.

      Toles has better stats then Joc, and this is only, his first year.

      But I was thinking this.

      When we face lefties, most of the time lately, Corey, Turner, Agone, Puig, Logan, play, with the part time players.

      But it really isn’t the part time players, that are hitting well, and providing the offense, it is the regular players above.

      Instead of having these part time players play, why don’t they just have the other regular players play, that normally play with Agone, Corey, Turner, Puig, and Logan, when they face righties.

      Because these other players, are not getting consistent at bats, especially when we face three lefties, in a row.

      And I strongly believe that players must have consistent at bats, to hit well.

      And that isn’t happening, because we are facing to many leftie pitchers.

    2. But I rather give Bellinger a try, then get Braun.

      And they better try Bellinger first, then try for Braun, because it is still early.

  7. Per TrueBlueLA, “In 2016, the Dodgers’ non-Kershaw starters averaged 5.06 innings per start. So far in 2017 — all of 10 starts — the average is 4.70.”

    1. The old guys are older. I’m not really surprised by this. Last year we were 29th in starters IP. Who did we add to eat innings? Ryu?

  8. Bluto: “Gloomy side: it’s obviously biased based on the Hill blister, but let’s look at the front office’s endevour to use the Dodgers money to buy risk:

    Anderson, Hill, McCarthy, Kazmir, Maeda

    Not the best ROI.”

    But CERTAINLY not the worst either Bluto!!

    Salary paid through 2016, Anderson, $26M, Hill, Minimal, McCarthy, $24M, Kazmir, $16M, Maeda, $10M, TOTAL $76M.

    Remaining salary obligation, Anderson $0, Hill, $48M, McCarthy, $24M, Kazmir, $32M, Maeda, $21M, TOTAL $125M.

    Major Performance Received to date; Anderson, 2015, 180 IP, 3.69 ERA; Kazmir, 2016, 136 IP, 4.56 ERA; Maeda, 2016, 176 IP, 3.48 ERA.

    Results, 492 innings of (weighted average) 3.85 ERA MLB starting pitching! Dividing that 492 innings by 180 innings equals 2.73 years of 3.85 ERA MLB pitching at 180 innings per year. Divide that $76M salary paid by 2.73 years equals $27.8M per year of 180 IP of 3.85 ERA MLB pitching.

    So even after factoring in two lost years from a TJ surgery and one lost year from a bad back. Getting 180 IP of 3.85 ERA MLB starting pitching for $28M/year could have been a lot worse.

      1. Not if the depth is also risky, or worse, the depth adds to the risk at the MLB level, because the risky bets are acquired with young arms or injured but still blocking our young arms.

  9. There is no excuse for this problem.

    I have said my only problem with the front office, was the signing , of these pitchers.

    But there is no excuse for the front office , not doing there due diligence, before signing Hill, especially after all of these other signings of these other pitchers, that have went south!

    They had really good access to Hill, to do what they should have done.

    1. What additional due diligence should they have done?

      Would you really rather have Greinke and a collection of Striplings?

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