Thursday, July 25, 2024
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Dodgers Need To Set The Bar Higher

Chase Utley and Corey Seager

Stark reality came crashing down upon the Dodgers in their pathetically predictable 6-1 loss to the Rockies in Monday evening’s series opener. Mike Bolsinger was unsurprsingly below average allowing six earned runs and two home runs to Colorado through 5.1 innings. Bolsinger isn’t the greatest pitcher in the world. That much is widely known. Once an opposing order gets to see him a third time through, they light him up like a Christmas tree. It’s not Bolsinger that is the problem, it’s the fact that the Dodgers have to rely on him and a 19-year old rookie to bolster the back end of the rotation. The 235 million dollar Dodgers have absolutely nobody else to count on other than a rookie and a journeyman pitcher that was cast aside by the Dbacks. No disrespect to Julio Urias or Bolsinger, but this is the sorry state that the Dodger’s so called “organizational depth” is in. As I have said before, keep your expectations low this season. Don’t expect for Brandon McCarthy to ride in like superman and save the day.

The Dodgers have been playing much better overall though. They’re still in it, and have a good chance to make a move on the Giants. Unfortunately the game decisions, lineup creations and overall management have been subpar at best. The Dodgers continue to shuffle the lineup and defy logic by resting the few offensive threats they have. The truth is that the Dodgers essentially have 4 legitimate threats in their lineup and the rest of the club couldn’t hit their way out of a paper bag. If those guys (Corey Seager, Trayce Thompson, Adrian Gonzalez, Chase Utley) don’t play every day then the Dodgers have zero chance of scoring or winning. Hence the reason the club scored one measly run on one hit last night. The only run was scored on a ground out.

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The Dodgers desperately need some right handed power in their lineup. Nay they actually just need any kind of legitimate run producers. They have nobody in the minors that can help them right now. That means they are going to have to make a trade. Honestly, I would try and pry Jonathan Lucroy away from the Brewers. It’s going to take a couple of good prospects to get him. Maybe a Jharel Cotton, or a Chris Anderson would do it. Lucroy would be worth it. Even though he’s in his walk year, he’s still in his prime and could be a force in the middle of the Dodger’s order. The Brewers aren’t going anywhere this year, why not make a play for him? The Dodgers certainly have the resources.

The Dodgers just have to do better. Three games above .500 and 4 games out of first place isn’t enough for me. The club has been playing a little better of late, but they need to continue making improvements to the roster. Cutting Carl Crawford was a great start. They can’t play the Reds and Braves every day.

The Dodgers aren’t terrible, but they are certainly not a championship caliber club. They have time to turn themselves into one this season, but those reinforcements are going to have to come from outside the organization.

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I don’t mean to sound like a downer or anything. I’ve said before, that the club will probably win around 88-90 games. There’s time to turn things around. However the club is nowhere near being a World Series contending team right now. There is no way they can stack up to the other great teams in the National league, or even stack up with the Giants. If hovering around .500 is your kind of baseball, and finishing in second or third place is fun to you, then please disregard everything I’ve written here. More power to you, and continue to enjoy. Other fans set the bar higher.

Help has to come from outside otherwise the Dodgers will continue to straddle the .500 mark. With a flaccid offense, 2.5 starting pitchers, unreliable middle relief, and a weak bench the Dodgers are unlikely to go anywhere this year. Unless 9 position players magically start to hit, and Julio Urias turns into Don Drysdale.

The season isn’t over yet I guess.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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Scott Andes
Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

43 thoughts on “Dodgers Need To Set The Bar Higher

  1. Scott, they have to rest Utley sometime. He’s 37, and he’s been dragging since the Mets series. That Rockies pitcher was no palooka; maybe they just got outpitched.
    I’m afraid Bolsinger is what he is. If Kershaw were pitching tomorrow Roberts could have gone to the pen in the fifth and kept the game close.

  2. Set the bar higher? Hmmm. A WS championship? That’s unrealistic this year, next year or the year after and probably as long as F & Z are running the show. A Division title? Well that had been the case the past 3 years but all of the acquisitions(or lack of) seem to be under minding that from happening.

    Take one player off of this team and this team IS NOT a .500 ball club.

    In 2-1/2 years he is probably walking cause I do not see FAZ paying him $40M+ per season.

  3. Mike Bolsinger is not a viable option anymore. The guy is lit up more than Las Vegas. Sometimes he does well, but never for more than 5 innings which strains the bullpen. But as bad as he was, the offense was once again, less than stellar. Chatwood closed them down like he was Johnny Queto. He has a decent ERA, and as Vinny says, pitches better away from home, but a 1 hitter>? They have lit that guy up a few times, and last night all of a sudden he is Cy Young. It is frustrating, especially on a night when they could have gained ground on the Giants, to lose to a team like the Rockies by essentially giving the game away. We are more than a third of the way into the season, this is no time to throw away games. They need some solid starting pitching from the 4 and 5 guys. The dreg they signed yesterday as a free agent is not the answer. For those of you who did not read about it, they signed Nick Tepesch, former Ranger starter…..9-17 lifetime with a 4.79 ERA… help there…

      1. Yeah Chili……depth, which starting disappearing in spring training. Give me quality over depth any day. A solid 2 &3 and we are breathing down the Giants neck. What we have now, struggling to stay ahead of the Rockettes. Urias LA debut….Hope he does well……

  4. The bar is already set too high. We can walk under it without ducking.

    I say again, I would be very surprised if any real prospects are used for a rental. Not this year. Yeah, we could conceivably compete in the West, especially if Arizona continues to flounder. But I think we need too much to compete Nationally. Some luck would be nice, but the season is too damn long for luck to play as big a part as we would need it to. This is who we are. Cutting Crawford and bringing up 19 year olds won’t change anything. We need Puig, Pederson, Thompson, Grandal, and AGon to hit every day. We need Maeda, Kazmir and whoever to give us quality starts night after night. We have enough players. There are 25 of them in the dugout every day. We need all of them contributing to compete. Will it happen? Clearly not every day.

  5. I will re-rant today on the pitching coach. Honeycutt has a job with the team only because he has reaped the benefit of Kershaw and, for the last few years, Grienke. I’ll throw in Jansen. Other than those 3 guys, he would have been out of here long ago. Neither he nor his sidekicks have made average pitchers better; if anything, they get worse. The team gets the retreads thinking that the sow’s ear can become the silk purse, but I can’t recall it happening with anyone. If Urias is a bust, and he still can be in spite of all the chatter among the experts, I will lay it on Honeycutt’s head. NO ONE IMPROVES. He is a caretaker type of coach. Not what this team needs. The problem is that Matt Herges is next in line, and I don’t think highly of him either. Especially after the PED issue with him. This team just is unable to draft and develop pitchers who can perform at the major league level. Maybe that bar IS too high. There is no culture of good pitching at the MLB level. I’m not sure if it exists in the minors either.

    1. You had better check history my friend. The Dodger pitching staffs under Honeycutt are consistently some of the best in the league. They have led in ERA or been close to 1st many times. Honey noticed a flaw in Kazmir’s foot plant, and that has led to his turn around the last couple of games. So you are way off the mark. His pitchers relate to him. Yeah, you cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, but that onus is on the GM and President of baseball ops. Fried Brain and Zilcho are the ones who have saddled him with mediocre arms, and recovering wrecks…

          1. “……… and Mark is…..?”

            Yes. He is.

            You want me to answer what he is?

            Ask him.

  6. Bobbi, I agree with you on Honeycutt. Nobody gets better under him. We should of cleaned house when we had the chance. Many pitchers have gotten worse under Honeycutt. Hatcher has been terrible for the past two years. He was a little better in the last half last year.

  7. wow i missed the game yesterday, but when I’d check in time to time on gameday, I”m glad I missed it!

    Can’t wait to get out to my first game tonight, and watch Franchise Part 2 make his home debut. If anybody here is going let’s meet up for an adult beverage!

  8. You guys kill me.

    Bolsinger should be the long man. He will…

    It’s easy to figure out what didn’t work after the fact. Smart people try and figure out what to do before the fact. so there is that…

    1. Bingo. Every move they make is reactionary!
      Please provide one glimpse of vision bestowed upon us by FAZ.

      What were you saying about ‘smart’ people?

      1. In a competitive sport like baseball where executives have even resorted to criminal behavior, only a dumba$$ would announce what their plan was. In fact, they may go to great lengths to obfuscate what the pan is. Do you really think they would articulate it? That very funny!

        1. Yep, Theo was a dumbass to tell the fan base to wait a few years as they were going to rebuild the organization into a playoff caliber team and then proceeded to trade everything of value. The fans were starting to wonder after 3 straight bad seasons…..but Theo held to the plan, not look at the team.

          Yep, the Giants announcing that they were going to sign either 1 or 2 FA pitchers last off season was complete dumbass comments.

          Yep, the Cards saying that they were either going to resign Heyward or sign a pitcher was complete dumbass comments.

          Only people who do not know what they are going to do, do not announce anything cause they have no vision. It’s called confidence and why there is a big boys table and a table for all others.

          1. Yep. If you don’t tell anyone what you’re doing, you can take credit when the roster churning finally produces something worthwhile.

      2. Uh, Mark, if you’ve actually read anything being written in here you will know this isn’t hindsight. We’ve been trying to tell you for months this isn’t a 95 win team. You just haven’t been listening.

  9. No one predicted that this team wouldn’t be able to hit. Most thought that the pitching would be the problem. The pitching is so-so or sometimes better but if this team was hitting like most thought that it would, the Dodgers would be competing for the Division.

    I expect that some of these hitters will be better in the 2nd half but that the pitching will actually be worse.

    Maybe this IS a .500 team?

      1. Hope……the great crutch of the doomed. Hope in one hand, and you know what in the other…….

        1. The guy coined that phrase was an idiot! The fact is “Great hope makes great men.” –Thomas Fuller!

  10. Maybe they aren’t hitting because they aren’t buying into being part time players.

    Or maybe they just can’t hit. Whatever. It ain’t happnin.

    “I expect that some of these hitters will be better in the 2nd half but that the pitching will actually be worse.” d-rick

    That’s how I see it as well. If the two of us are wrong – does it make it right?

  11. I have been on the can Honeycutt bandwagon for a few years now. I agree with our underage poster 1000%. See what I did there? The same goes for our lack of hiring a hitting instructor. I thought these guys were supposed to be good. They had the snakes slapping the ball all over the place. I kind of have to go back to the “attitude thing”. The vets feel complacent and the prospects feel blocked. The Crawford jettisoning should have woken some of the vets up… Ummmm…

    I am so glad I missed the game last night. I can’t even call these streaks what these guys have, it’s more like a flippin richter scale, up, down, up, up, up, waaaay down, up, down, you get the idea.

    I tried to be patient and go into the season with a completely open mind, all the way around. The trainers are as bad or worse, Honeycutt is still here, and Roberts sometimes has these looks on his face like Donnie Dum Dum is channeling him strategy ideas. Yes he is learning on the job, but the has the most mixed up bag of tools to do the job.

    There is zero consistency in this organization from TOP to BOTTOM. It’s like let’s throw different crap on the wall each day and see what happens. It’s the “Rorschach test” for a lineup. Gee Faz what do you see? Okay we’ll go with that idea today.

    Timmons keeps insisting they have a “PLAN”. WTF is it? And don’t tell me they won’t tell us!!! We know that. But the problem is I don’t think anyone else does either. And you can’t have a plan for an organization if those in your organization don’t buy into it. That’s were I see the problem. These guys think they are so much smarter than all the others, the others either can’t see “PLAN” or they don’t buy into the “PLAN”.

    It’s well documented that I am not a big fan of this FO and this is not a rag job on them, but I am a sliver away from jumping on the anti-FAZ bandwagon with a vengeance. Freudy’s post on LAD Therapy is must reading for any Dodger fan.

    Also there is a good post by Dylan Hernandez in the L.A. Times today about Crawford and the “event” that occurred with the BOSOX.

    1. Well, Dylan Hernandez wrote it so it must be true. Ha Ha!

      The Plan is not hard to see if you have “vision.” But, many don’t want to see it. There are none so blind as those who will not see!

      THE PLAN:

      1. Build the farm
      2. Don’t give up compensatory draft picks
      3. Don’t trade top prospects
      4. Don’t give out long-term deals (5+ years) to players over 30
      5. In 17 or 18, as the farms starts producing, you can fill in with some long-term deals.

      It’s really simple. It may not make you happy. Maybe they can win now. Maybe they can’t. As I have said before Guggs and Company wants to build the farm and win now. Friedman is a little hand-tied because those are divergent interests.

      Tell Dylan Hernandez that after the RedSox duped the Dodgers in that deal, they won the World Series the next year… AND THEY WON IT WITHOUT ANY LONG-TERM FA SIGNINGS!

      1. How in the hell do you know the plan when they have never announced it?

        So this is how you see/dream their plan to be. So when they were offering Grienke 5 years (see exhibit 4 above) they were really just bluffing. Yeah right. The ‘amateurs’ got screwed.

        So your on record (per the plan) saying that no way they offer Kershaw. Hopefully your few cronies on here have read what the plan is so that they don’t question those who have been saying that these loons will not sign Kershaw and therefore they should trade and get top talent for him.

        And as an fyi, the Farm is a work in progress. So far the depth in the farm is not there. It has been nothing more than a mirage. A magic act.

        FAZ is attempting to play everyone for fools but only a few are falling for their tricks.

        1. It’s not difficult to see the plan if you stand back from line of scrimmage about 15 yards.

          That’s right, the plan is to punt.

          Dump the aging veterans and slowly, or prematurely, bring up the kids. They should all be at the starting gate in the Spring of ’18. Pederson and Puig might be out of their slumps by then too. In the mean time, sign the easy signs – Kazmir, Maeda, McCarthy, Kendrick, Utley – trade for wannabes – Latos, Johnson – and hope fans are gullible enough to believe any “win now” b.s. thrown their way.

          It’s a good plan. I now buy into it. It took a while, but I can see FAZ is right. This 2016 team is going nowhere. I’m now a FAZophant. THE FUTURE IS LATER! (all caps for dramatic effect)

      2. My concern is with Step 5. I don’t have your confidence that the Braintrust will spend the money to fill in the gaps. They have only signed the injury-prone and the mediocre thus far. Tampa, Oakland and San Diego were never known for spending big $$ to bring in talent. Heck, they wouldn’t even spend $$ to keep their own talent.

        1. I see that Mark has changed his position on “win now”, looking ahead to ’17, ’18. I have to acknowledge that.

          And I also agree with rick’s questioning the FAZ’z ability to acquire free agents. They haven’t done it yet, but does that mean they can’t?

    2. Same results from two different manager, tells me the front office is running the show not Roberts

  12. Bolsinger to the pen? As a long man….maybe, but they had better fix the rotation first..

  13. I do not profess to know everything, but I do know this. They had a golden opportunity to gain ground on their bitterest rival and BLEW IT>. They gave that game away. They couldn’t hit, or pitch. It was a pitiful exhibition.

  14. What would the stats be without Kershaw, Grienke, and Jansen? Mediocre pitchers stay that way. Young ones never get good. I hope I am wrong, but if they F up Urias, it is on Honeycutt and his helpers.

    1. No, the pitching coach does not make those decisions. Who is on the roster, and what their job is, is dictated by the front office and the director of personnel. Young ones do get good, so you are way off there. Kershaw, Fernando, Koufax, they were all kids at some point and they became fine pitchers. I personally think that they are in a bad spot with the fans who are extremely restless, and a little un-nerved at a team who’s pitching staff leaves a lot to be desired after Kershaw and they are putting the pressure on a 19 year old, who has never thrown more than 88 innings, to give them some. This is because their so called depth started going south during spring. Beachy, Montas, Anderson, Frias all have been hurt. They do not trust Lee to do the job, they are limiting Stripling’s pitches, and their big dollar acquisition’s , Kazmir, and Maeda, have been so so at best. They could have, and should have went after a true #2 when Greinke opted out….they did not, and that has proved to be a mistake. Fried Brains and Zilcho have signed retreads as a result, and a lot of guys with injury issues….

  15. I’m trying to decide on the appropriate word: Windbags or fools? I shall choose wisely, grasshoppers!

  16. Okay, yes yes I think I can see it, quick pass me that bottle. Yes that’s better it’s starting to come in clear now. The plan it’s ingenious a mathematical masterpiece I can really see it now. Starting pitching – mediocre, check. Bullpen- mediocre, check. Offense- mediocre, check. $9 beers…Hey FAZ it’s starting to fade, quick pass me that bottle again.

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