Saturday, April 13, 2024
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Latest Dodger’s Bullpen Disaster Must Signal Change

The latest Dodgers bullpen disaster played out like a predictable fairy tale, the kind you read to your children late at night before tucking them into bed. You know how and what will happen in the story, but are still surprised to see it happen nonetheless. It’s because it shouldn’t happen, especially to a club that has the best record in the National League.

The disaster took place in Southern California’s Orange County in an infuriating 5-3 loss to the Angels. The game was played at Disney but there was no pixie dust or fairy tales in the Dodger’s corner. There is no magic when the Dodgers have a small lead in the seventh or eighth innings.

Let’s be Frank here, the Dodger’s bullpen is a loser. It doesn’t take a scientist, or forensic expert to figure this out. The collection of arms the Dodgers have in their bullpen as a whole is a failure. It’s not going to work and no amount of shuffling them around is going to fix it. That’s what the Dodgers seem intent on doing before it really catches up to them.

Unfortunately it won’t catch up to them yet. Sure they lost another lead in the late frames as multiple incompetent middle relievers were unable to secure outs. I’ll say it over and over and over until the apologists either finally accept reality and agree with the logic that is staring them in the face, or until they finally succumb to the frustrating results of more losing. The Dodger bullpen sucks. Say whatever you will about manager Dave Robert’s tactics but if the entire bullpen consists of mediocre arms than is there really any way to use them properly?

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When I say mediocre arms, I’m being kind. Today’s losers were Dylan Floro, Ross Stripling and of course loser poster boy Joe Kelly. For the record I like Floro, but he’s been struggling lately. The rest of the guys, who knows? It all started when Hyun-jin Ryu had reached 99 pitchers after the sixth inning. Ryu had once again turned in another sterling effort and the Dodgers had a 3-1 lead with nine outs to go. The bells started to chime.

A mark of a good bullpen is the ability to hold a one-run or two-run lead which is the slimmest of margins in a baseball game. If a relief corp is unable to do that then they are in fact a collection of duds. Losers if you will. They may be making millions of dollars and are better than 99% of the general population but against their peers on the major league level they are bad. Don’t get this twisted.

Stripling had managed to record two outs in the bottom of the seventh but allowed a single base runner to reach first base. There was a big problem, the next hitter due up was mega god Mike Trout. You know, Mike Trout the best player in baseball over the last decade or so. There’s a runner at first and Trout represented the tying run. Roberts did what he usually does, he went to a matchup, bringing in right hander Dylan Floro to pitch to Trout instead of taking the logical route and walking him and taking their chances with whoever was on deck.

Of course Trout predictably homered tying the game. Once this happened I think everyone could see what was going to happen. If you didn’t allow me to explain. Right now the Dodgers are a little banged up. The normally excellent lineup is a bit streamlined. Cody Bellinger is experiencing the first slump of the season and David Freese, Alex Verdugo and Joc Pederson are all battling nagging injuries. Verdugo and Pederson’s are of the sore back variety. So this means they haven’t been scoring as many runs lately. This also means that there will be more low scoring and potentially close games in the late innings. The need for reliable relievers is never more apparent in those situations.

But back to the trainwreck on Monday night in Anaheim. For whatever reason, Joe Kelly was brought into pitch in the eighth inning with the score tied at 3-3. Unsurprisingly, Kelly (he of the 7.59 ERA) allowed two runs to cross the plate. There was a walk, an errant pick-off throw, an intentional walk, a wild pitch, another wild pitch and a fielder’s choice. To be fair the throwing error from Max Muncy didn’t help Kelly’s situation. Yet that matters little. He didn’t hold the lead. The Dodger bullpen didn’t hold the lead.

The problem with this situation is that there is no sense of urgency right now for the Dodgers to make a change. The bullpen desperately needs to be rebuilt but the club has a huge lead in the National League West. They’re winning despite the dreadful pen and it’s too early to make any deals. Besides there are little viable options on the trade market anyways. The time to build an effective bullpen has always been during the winter.

There may not be a sense of urgency right now, there will be one soon. Because a terrible bullpen like the Dodgers have may not bother the Dodgers in mid June, but it will certainly cause problems in October. As a matter of fact it may prevent the Dodgers from reaching their third consecutive World Series. It would definitely prevent them from winning it.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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Scott Andes
Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

97 thoughts on “Latest Dodger’s Bullpen Disaster Must Signal Change

  1. A wasted quality start, again. Ryu did not deserve this. He was not at his best, but he battled all night, holding the Angels to 1 run, and keeping the Dodgers in the game.

    Blame it on a dismal 2-12 RISP. Stagnant offense, again.

    But firstly, blame it once again, on poor bullpen and bullpen management. The wheels fell off the wagon again, last night.

    And then there is this rubber arm named Kelly. $25M and two more years stuck with Kelly? Thanks Friedman. You got to sell a whole lot of Dodger Dogs to recover your losses. I think Dodger Fans should boycott his bobblehead night…. nobody show up. Or at least throw them back onto the field in protest. Kelly is a basket case… a disgrace to the Dodger uniform.

    Verdugo seems to be pressing, especially after hearing he will sit when Pollock comes back.

    Pederson pressing too. Joc knows his playing time is limited as it is, and will only get worse when Pollock returns. Hope he still has those splinter-proof baseball pants on hand.

    Kelly has to go, and Dodgers have to just suck up his contract and eat it.

      1. Maybe not a bad idea, Bluto! Still got your glove and spikes?

        Dumping his contract might be a wise decision, as he could cost them $250M if they do not make the playoffs or WS. They ate Homer Bailey’s contract.

    1. “Blame it on a dismal 2-12 RISP. Stagnant offense, again.

      But firstly, blame it once again, on poor bullpen and bullpen management. The wheels fell off the wagon again, last night.”
      Bluefan, I hope ya are OK with me copying these 2 sentences because they are EXACTLY SPOT ON! And what I might have posted as well. After all when Dodgers put up those 3 runs by the end of the 2nd inning , and then went to sleep offensively for the rest of the game was a huge reason as well as the documented BP doing what it does best. Scott is right on when he says this BP is simply a complete loser.

  2. Bluefan. I don’t think you are using the term “rubber arm” correctly. A rubber arm is a good thing. A pitcher who can pitch on back-to back days. Good things and Joe Kelly do not mix.

    I get what you mean, but maybe you should update his nickname. (maybe Noodle-Arm Kelly?)

    Scott. Regarding Joc, Verdugo and Freese: Tin Foil alert… Is the team making up these issues so that they can get their favorite sons into the lineup? (Kikkeee and his .215 and Taylor and his .225) I have noticed that the press gives Roberts the business when he sits Verdugo for a matchup. (an indefensible strategy) Recently he started telling them that Verdugo was banged up. That got them off his case. Did he so enjoy the breathing room that all of a sudden the whole platoon crew is all banged up???? If so, that is pathetic. I have to give Roberts the benefit of the doubt on this, because the alternative diminishes him greatly in my eyes. (end conspiracy theory)

    1. I hear you Mexivin,

      It could be used either way, but I get what you are sayin. I just think back to the days when I played, the opposing team would heckle the pitcher with the phrase, “Pitcher has a rubber arm!” Also thought it could mean that pitcher has had surgery to replace ligaments with rubber bands, and no longer has control… the accuracy of a sling shot.

      Bottom line. Kelly sucks.

      As far as Verdugo & Pederson. Dodgers like to use fake injuries to mask their unfortunate contractural obligations. So, when they say Pollock will play and start when he comes back, the domino effect of sitting Verdugo and Pederson is softened, as gullible fans believe that they are sitting them due to injuries. The Dodgers are notorious for abusing the IL, so they can make ridiculous roster moves. Unfortunately, these worthless veterans have few to no “options”, so the younger players are the sacrificial lambs, and must give way to the high paid veterans, either by placement on the IL, or demoted back to OKC.

      Maybe Joc and Alex do have minor back issues. If this is in fact the case, then maybe caused by them pressing at the plate, and over-swinging, and throwing their backs out. They do not look comfortable at the plate, they are swinging wildly from their heels.

      I hope they can manage a split with the Angels.

      1. Hello Bluefan4Life. Correct you are as far as Joc and Verdugo go but I believe Dodgers may not be the only team abusing the IL for whatever reasons. But one thing I am confident that fans here agree with you 1,000% is that Joe Kelly sucks, no 2 ways about that.

  3. Gas Can strikes again. Totally pitiful performance. I still maintain that Dave Roberts is one of the worst strategical managers in the bigs. He makes the wrong moves at exactly the wrong times. Not walking Trout in that spot is tantamount to Lasorda letting Niedenfuer pitch to Jack Clark. Hurt or not, the Dodger O is not hitting on all cylinders. Had their chances and just flat failed. The kicker is that the Angels O was ofer with runners in scoring position and won the game. Snatching defeat from the Jaws of Victory. And Scott, change is not immanent. Just read MLB trade rumors to see Ol Andy’s reply to the BP dilemma. Oh, and the only pitcher at AAA doing anything decent is Chargois. Kelly is close to joining his fellow stinkers, Andruw Jones, Don Stanhouse and the notorious Jason Schmidt, as the worse FA signings in LA history.

      1. Yeah, he was bad, but those other guys cost a lot more money than Goltz did, and considering the production they got out of him, Strawberry was not really a win either. Nor was Manny in the last two seasons he played. But Schmidt got 45 million bucks and pitched in exactly 10 games. 4.5 mil a start.

      2. Remember Darren Dreifort? No too good of a first round draft pick for the Dodgers. Never went to the minors. Came straight up to the bigs? Had less than mediocre success. When he was up for new contract negotiations, Dodgers signed him, fearing that if they did not sign him, he would go to the Gnats? Contract was for like $55M/5 years? He hardly played out those 5 years due to various injuries. Total waste. Oh yeah, Boros was his agent…. he pulled a fast one on the Dodgers with that story about the Gnats’ interest in Dreifort.

        1. yeah, remember him well. Great potential, theres that word again. Same knee jerk reaction to free agency that they later did with Ethier.

  4. Dummy will do whatever he thinks he needs to do to get the spotlight off Kelly. That is how he rolls. Change the subject and get all eyes off the problem. Namely Kelly and the bullpen and himself. He does not want to isolate the problem, period.

  5. Change for the sake of change is not exactly a good thing. Now if they can improve what they have, then that is change for the better. Ferguson and Chargois the only 2 pitchers with MLB experience who are doing well at AAA. Chargois has 4 saves and Ferguson has yet to be scored on. Alexander and Kelly to the IL immediately to get themselves ironed out. Floro has simply lost his confidence it seems to me. Those HR’s he has given up have him rattled. Now, do not expect any of our so called prime prospects to be of any help anytime soon. Gonsolin has an ERA north of 6 and May, not much better Santana not pitching well either. None of the relievers are lighting it up at AAA. So, unless Ol Andy has a miracle trade up his sleeve…what you see is what you are going to get, over and over and over.

    1. What we will see is all of us , including the Dodgers themselves watching other teams play in October. And there is no guarantee we even get to the PS if this BP continues this ‘norm’

  6. As a lifelong Dodger fan, I have seen many incarnations of Dodger teams. I watched first the tail end of the great Brooklyn teams of the 50’s. The transition to the LA Dodgers and the pitching rich, offensively challenged bunch they were in the early 60’s. The lean years between 66-73. The rise of Lasorda, the fall of Campanis. The rookies of the year in the late 70’s early 80’s and the 90’s batch. Cy young winners, a couple of league MVP’s. Through all of those years, the only times they went back to back were 52-53, 55-56, 65-66 and 77-78. And those were very good teams. So what the team has accomplished the last 6 years is unprecedented in Dodger history. They have never been this good this long. 6 division titles, 2 WS appearances. No WS wins. I read a lot and a lot of fans seem to be content that they just get there. I am happy they are where they are, but, I feel, and I think some of you do too that they could be better. Friedman has quantity in the system, but the quality is iffy. He goes for the patch for the inner tube instead of a new tire. Farhan is doing exactly the same thing now in SF. Dodger fans deserve better. Why? The unprecedented support and attendance since their move to LA dwarfs pretty much what the entire league has done. For years LA led the league in attendance. They are still way up there and not only that considering what the average fan spends on tickets, concessions and souvenirs, they are making cash hand over foot. But we are still subjected to slugs like Kelly, Kike, and Taylor. Admittedly, they have all done some good things in their careers, but all are underperforming right now. And Ol Andy does not seem inclined to think change is needed at this point in time. Well, over his almost 5 years at the helm, the bullpen has always been a weakness. More so a few years ago, but glaringly so right now. Fix it Andy. If you want the big win you have never gotten, you need a bold early strike to the market. And not one, maybe two quality relievers. Get rid of some of that peripheral talent in the minors that has no shot at helping this team win. It is time to reward Dodger fans for their loyalty to this team. You are not beating anyone with this bullpen.

    1. Michael
      This management and ownership is on an ego trip. They figure they can BS the fan base no matter how things turn out. They always have. I always thought the fans were smarter than that. It appears they do not care either. They continue to believe whatever they are told and spend as much money as they can to help a team that absolutely will not pull the trigger and get some players that will win. That means no Kike at 1st , no Taylor on the team and a complete restructuring of the bullpen. Bottom line is a W.S. championship. Oh, one other thing, get rid of Dummy or let him run the team the way he wants or continue the way it is, if there is a difference.

      1. Package,

        You hit the nail on the head.

        One… Dodger faithful are gullible, and believe everything the Dodgers say.

        Two…. DR cannot manage his way. “He would if he could, but he can’t, so he wont.” He has the FO pulling his puppet strings, and can only work with the cards he is dealt. FO is directing him to keep throwing Kelly out there. FO demands that he play the “Lefty Lineup”. FO is telling him that Pollock “Will Start” when he returns. FO tells him Will Smith is not ready yet. FO gives him a spreadsheet to follow. FO tells DR which players should fake injuries. FO probably also dictates what the batting order will be, and who will be a available in the bullpen.

        That being said, I think he is doing the best he can, and doing a pretty darn good job at that. Best record in MLB! Imagine if he did not have to wear the shackles? Season would be over, and they would present the WS trophy now! Yeah right…. in my dreams.

        1. Blue
          I can buy some of what you say but there are things Dummy does have the say so like removing pitchers and which relief pitchers are used in given situations. I think you can say that I am too hard on Dummy but I go by what I know and that is that he makes the in game decisions and at least has some input in the lineup and what order it is. The ownership is accountable for sure but don’t take Dummy completely off the hook.

          1. I hear you Package! I know I can be a bit facetious (most of the time), but it is all in fun…. I hope.

        1. Bluto
          You need to go back to sipping the Kool Aid. If the management and ownership were as good as you think they are, they would have won 4 World Championships, one for each year of the Friedman/Dummy regime. As it is the Dodgers have none. Yes, Package is in rare form

    2. “. It is time to reward Dodger fans for their loyalty to this team. You are not beating anyone with this bullpen.”
      SPOT ON! Michael, my initial guess is that everyone is in 1,000% agreement here.

  7. I hope everyone is as excited about Joe Kelly Bonehead Night as much as I am. Oh boy, only two nights to go, I can hardly wait.

    1. True
      I might be wrong but it seems like Kelly doesn’t take his performance seriously. He says he is almost there. I don’t think his there and my there are the same thing. Do you?

      1. … nor do the Dodgers. FO is hoping and praying that by continually throwing Kelly out on the bump, he will snap out of it and prove they had not made a big mistake in signing him. FO is trying to save face.

  8. Another miserable offensive night for the Dodgers. Compounded by a miserable first inning by Maeda. The HR by Shohei Ohtani really knocked Kenta for a loop, and Kenta dug too deep hole for the Dodgers to climb out of… a 5 run deficit once Kenta’s head had cleared. Kenta and the bullpen silenced the Angels after that, but the damage was done.

    The sputtering offense could not get any clutch hits. Just three solo HR’s…. two by Muncy, and one PH HR by Mr. Freese. The rest of the offense did manage to double the number of hits by the Angels (12-6), but left too many runners stranded. 2-13 RISP, 15 LOB, 10 KO’s. The bottom trio, CT3, Kiké, and Barnes, were just 1-13, with 5 K’s, and 17 LOB (CT3 9 alone, and 6 for Kiké). Bellinger continues to slump…. unable to get the clutch hits he has been known for.

    Sad to see the bad calls at the dish. Umpire totally gave those third strikes to the the Halos in the ninth. But, then again, there is something called “protect the plate on anything close”. Don’t just stand there hoping for a walk.

    To top it off, their hottest hitter, Seager, may be out for a while with a pulled hamstring.

    A night we all would like to forget.

  9. Initial call on Seager’s Hammy is a grade 2 strain. 4to 6 weeks on the IL. Offense sucked. Taylor left 9 men on. Here is the kicker, with Seager out, the Dodgers are going to use Taylor as their primary SS. I like his glove, but right now his bat is made of sawdust….For Pack’s consideration…Roberts said today that he feels Kelly is putting too much pressure on himself and therefore not pitching to his potential…there you have it Pack……the reason Kelly sucks..

    1. Wow 4-6 weeks. That is what I was anticipating. With this offense, that is the last thing we wanted to hear. Seager was really locked in, and will be missed.

      Roberts looked like he was ready to cry in his press conference. The offense without Cory? I think I would be crying too. So, the Dodgers announced that CT3 will be Seager’s replacement? Well, he has been playing almost every day anyway, so his impact to Dodger offense will not be a factor. I do like his glove. Seager’s offensive replacement in the lineup must be able to fill his shoes. Big shoes to fill.

      Poor Kelly…. putting too much pressure on himself? I’ll say… the pressure to live up to his expectations? Not what you would want from a highly paid, professional relief pitcher…. he should have ice in his veins. Maybe it is the pressure of proving he is worthy of a Bobblehead Night? Certainly cannot be money… should be no pressure there, as he can bank on his automatic deposit every month, whether or not he does his job, or not. Can get fired, and still get that auto deposit. No pressure as to if he will get a paycheck. Yup, must be the expectations to be worthy of a Bobblehead.

      A prime example of what is wrong with the current MLB contract structures. “Guaranteed” has to be stricken from the contract. They should be held liable if they do not perform. They should be treated like a contractor. With the onset of free agency, they are basically independent contractors. They should be subject to breach of contract if they cannot deliver.

      Owners, I’m almost certain, have insurance to cover these enormous contracts. Maybe that is why the MLB has the “Injured List”, so they can recover their losses, sometimes even declaring “Fake” injuries (insurance fraud). What is Kelly’s injury? Mental instability, due to putting too much pressure on himself?… Bobblehead unworthiness? But still, the Owners are stupid to even get sucked into “guaranteeing ” these contracts. There has to some accountability on the player to perform.

  10. Michael
    I guess you can give an excuse for whatever but you cannot continue to keep putting him out there to lose. That is when you continue to be Dummy. I do not know the answer but tie ballgames are not the answer.

  11. Well, Seager is out again. A very bad sign for sure. Seager is looking more and more as accident prone. Plus he is not one who heals quickly so I predict his 4-6 weeks will turn in to much more. We shall see but I predict you will not see him until September at the earliest. We shall see.

    1. That is going to hurt, both Seager and the Dodgers.

      Colletti, I always liked him, sans the Schmidt signing for sure.

      Give Kelly a crate of his Boneheads tomorrow night and send him on his way. Reality with Bonehead, can he really be entrusted with any game that counts in the post season, no, so he is as good as just a wasted spot on the roster. Time to throw the trash out and eat his contract. Hell, they ate Homer Bailey’s contract without batting an eye, why not ?

  12. Answer me this….

    WHY cluster Taylor, Kiké, Barnes, and Pederson (leading off)? Basically forfeiting 4-5 innings to the opposition. So, that means the 5 remaining in the offense has 4-5 innings to try and make something happen?

    1. And that’s why they lost. If you put multiple automatic outs or terrible hitters in your lineup, especially all at once and back to back to back you will lose. Kike is a dreadful hitter and has been for years. Decent glove and has some power but horrid hitter with no on-base skills. Unfortunately hes the management’s little favorite and he’ll get a lot of playing time. I wouldn’t shed a tear if he got traded or cut. Barnes is also a horrible hitter. 2017 was a total fluke. I like Taylor who is a much better all around hitter then kike and a fine defensive player. But he’s not hitting much this year either. Stop playing terrible hitters and you go far.

  13. Well Blue, with Freese banged up and not ready to play the field, his options are limited. Garlick is just holding down a roster spot until Beatty is back. It would not have mattered if Pederson was hitting like he was a couple of weeks ago. Verdugo, Belli, Joc, Taylor, Kike, Barnes, all are in down spins. Only Seager and Turner, and Martin have been hitting some lately. Muncy looks like his bat is waking up. Problem is that the Dodgers have not had a pure lead off hitter for years. They mix and match all the time so there is no CONSISTENCY in the lineup. It is extremely frustrating to watch sometimes. When they are hitting on all cylinders, they are a machine. Trouble is the gears clog now and then. Watch Joc the next time he hits. If he is pulling off of the ball, he is not going to be hitting. That’s what he has been doing for the last couple of weeks. Kike is slumping because he tries to pull everything instead of just poking the ball the other way. Takes that same stupid approach every time there is a clutch situation. He hits a homer, everyone is happy. The usual outcome is a K or a ground out.

    1. Agree Michael,

      So hard to establish a leadoff hitter, when DR is constantly shuffling the deck. Then when Pederson gets hot, he sits him. Go figure. Inconsistency is the answer to this, inconsistency with the lineup, leads to inconsistency in with the offense. Leadoff, especially, needs to be an every day player, not a platoon player.

      1. Not going to happen. We would all like it to happen, but it just ain’t . No sense beating your head against the wall. Now be a good boy and go collect that Joe Kelly Bonehead Doll tomorrow night.

      2. I along with most agree with you as far as the inconsistency with the lineup cause by the constant shuffling of the deck. and for the most part as far as I can recall, leadoff hitters are everyday players, except those on the Dodgers.

        1. Absolutely Paul,

          Lead off hitters are a special breed, and must play every day, to establish their roll, and responsibility to that roll. Leadoff homers are nice when they come, but when they don’t there lies the problem. HR’s are not their primary responsibility. It ‘s more important to set the tone of the game by getting on base any way they can, steal bases to avoid double plays, put pressure on the pitcher, and get him out of his comfort zone. Get into scoring position for the #3 and #4 hitters. Pederson can definitely hit HR’s but is not the ideal leadoff candidate. Most of the time he strikes out, or pops out. CT3 used to be a very good leadoff guy in his early years, but his swing (or lack of swing) has changed to looking for the fences. He cannot even bunt successfully any more. Kiké might be a good candidate, but because he rides the elevator up and down the lineup, he cannot take time to establish the roll. Leadoff takes a lot of work and discipline. Right now, He and CT3 look like clones at the plate.

  14. True Blue,

    We all know it is not going to happen. That is the root of the problem. Dodger Management will do nothing. They do not believe in basic common baseball sense. They only trust their spreadsheets.

    Thought you were going tomorrow, because you did not get the memo? Or maybe you are ignoring the memo, because you absolutely have to that knucklehead’s bobblehead.?

    Have fun tomorrow night. Maybe you and your bobblehead can do a wave or something.

  15. Good news…Kershaw is pitching tomorrow…Bad news, Seager will not be playing. I say go out of the box and bring up AA shortstop Omar Estevez. Since there is not obvious replacement at AAA, give the kid a shot. He was impressive in spring, hit a couple of clutch dingers. Did not seem over matched at the dish, and he has a vacuum cleaner glove. Good signs from last nights loss. Freese looks like he is close to ready to get back on the field and play some defense,…better option than Hernandez that’s for sure, and the defense last night was a huge improvement over the night before.

    1. Hey, Kike has a vacuum for a glove and makes outstanding defensive plays, don’t kid yourself. He can be a streaky hitter for sure. For me, I don’t bring up a AA player to play SS, why screw up a youngster in a knee-jerk reaction to an injury. Kike would be a solid defensive replacement at SS. Put Muncy at 2B and then get Freese in the lineup at 1B asap.

      1. His bat right now sucks. Sorry, I just cannot trust a guy as streaky as he is and especially when he has been in a 2 month slump. He has not looked good up at the plate since April. Yeah, he has a couple of homers, but no consistency at all. I like Estevez. Kid is mature and could handle it I am pretty sure. His glove is equal too or better than Hernandez and Taylor. Dodgers sign Rosscup to a minor league deal and send him to OKC. Might look like a bad signing, but Rosscup’s walk to K ratio is excellent. He misses bats. More than Ol Alex does. Taylor was a bust there last year, and he is going to get first shot at it.

        1. Okay we disagree, you want to roll the dice with a AA kid with no major league experience and take the chance on blowing up a youngster’s future, I get it, I don’t agree with it but whatever. There is a reason that clubs bring youngsters along at a certain pace, they know that the player’s confidence and psyche are a fragile thing and not a predictable thing when a player is thrown in over his head. If he was ready, he’d be at OKC, since you stated they got nothing up there at SS. But whatever.

          1. I get it True, and disagreeing is fine, but no one can know how the kid will react. I have seen plenty of AA guys come to the bigs and do fine. Others, not so much. He is blocked up there at AAA by 3 guys, Jackson, Robinson, and Castro. None of whom are lighting it up. But I do see your point. I just do not think you can predict how someone will respond to the pressure. He did really well in spring. He is 22, so young, but the same age as Verdugo.

  16. Agree Micheal,

    Kiké does not have a bat right now. He sucks, real bad. But, He does have the versatility, speed, and ability to be a leadoff candidate, only “IF” given the opportunity to be in the leadoff position on a consistent basis. He just needs a good mentor. Who better than his “Daddy” DR himself, or “Daddy2”, Utley, or even Maury Wills? DR loves him like a son, and Kiké respects him. Stop the lineup elevator at the top floor, and let him lead off for a while. I think it is worth a try. They certainly do not have anything to lose. To get a legitimate leadoff batter in a trade right now, are slim to none. Nobody else they have right now, fits the mold. Pederson is not my choice for leadoff, but I would definitely like to see him play more often. As far as CT3, I have lost faith in him. He has gone to the “Dark Side” of offensive scales…. maybe C3PO then?

    Like they say, “ Try it, you’ll like it. He likes it! . . . Hey Mikey!”

    1. He has 248 at bats as a leadoff hitter. His BA is .248. But his OBP is only .301. Not good from that spot in the order…so no, Mikey does not like it. 2nd , 5th , 6th and 8th are his best spots in the order according to his stats. He swings for the fences too much. He strikes out too much. He has walked exactly 19 times all year. Pederson has more than that, less K’s and makes better contact. That’s stats speaking, not me. Kike’s OBP is .282. That’s pitiful. Joc’s OBP in the leadoff roll is .360. Come on man, Joc is definitely a better choice than Kike at this point. Maybe drop him in the 2 hole and have Turner or Muncy behind him for protection. But he sucks at leading off. Moot point though since all sources are reporting that Taylor is going to get the regular job at SS. Of more interest is who takes Corey’s place on the roster.

      1. I hear you Michael,

        Just kind’a joking around. I don’t know, maybe the best bet would probably be CT3 leadoff? Maybe he can regain his miracle first season form. Problem is, all these guys are falling into the feast or famine mode. Bases empty HR’s or nothing… everyone swinging for the fences. When asked to just get a productive RBI base hit…forget about it. Either a pop out, strikeout, or GIDP.

        Wow, St Louis Blues beat Boston Bruins, in Boston. Maybe miracles can happen this year. go Dodgers!

        1. 3 years ago yes on Taylor, now, no. He leads the team in strikeouts. Pederson has the best stats there, so leave him there, but play him every game. How is he going to hit lefty’s if he is sitting on the bench. I was a lefty and I hit either well.

          1. Leaving Pederson leadoff is fine, if they are willing to keep him there. Let him face lefties. Give him a shot. Only with the Dodgers, will they brainwash you into thinking you cannot hit lefties. I have been saying that for years. Hate the automatic Lefty Lineup.

    1. arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Not getting one. Would rather have my Brian Wilson than that slug

  17. Padres send Paddock down to high A ball. Controlling his innings. Rocks lose, lead is 9.5. No results of MRI on Corey yet.

  18. check youtube tonight, I suspect there will be some clips of Dodgers’ fans crushing, pummeling, stomping on or throwing Kelly Bonehead Dolls in the trashcan upon receiving them tonight at the park. What a Promotional Night disaster for the Dodgers, the only thing more of a disaster is Kelly’s performance since coming to the Dodgers. Maybe we can get Jason Schmidt back to take Kelly’s spot.

    1. True Blue,

      Everyone who must attend tonight’s game due to tickets already bought, should make a trek to the Dodger Bullpen, and toss the Kelly Bobblehead into the bullpen.

  19. Blue and True
    Man you guys are really upset about Kelly’s performance? I don’t know about throwing the bobbleheads into the bullpen. Perhaps, you should just not take one and let them do away with them. Oh well, maybe that would get management’s attention but what a severe blow to Kelly.

    1. I know, kind of rough isn’t it? But I am sure there are many who have the same sentiments. True and I may be a bit more vocal.

      Bottom line, we all work hard for our money. If we fail, we get a pink slip and no more paycheck. No fault of Kelly that the Dodgers blew it, and signed him to that outrageous contract. But the fact of the matter is, Kelly is a flop, and Friedman swallowed the bait, hook, line, and sinker.

      So, yes I am upset, as many other fans are, and I do not feel sorry for him.
      Due to Dodger ignorance, Kelly can go home every night without worrying about whether or not he will get a paycheck, at least for 2-3 more years. He does not have to care about performing, and earning his paycheck. He could care less.

      1. Blue
        I think you are definitely correct in that most folks work very hard for their money and deserve to see the very best Dodger team they can but it is most unfortunate that the ownership is unwilling to pay for top tier athletes. Of course the Dodger team is very good but they have a few players that definitely should not be on this team. The ownership should get out there and really fix the bullpen and the lower end on the lineup but I am not hopeful.

  20. Not going Package. But if I did, i would. That would be crazy. I can remember a ball night, where the ball had a picture of a player on it. Fans threw the balls onto the fild, in protest. That was hilarious!

    1. The only way that I would go to that game is if they paid me to go to the game. Maybe all the fans should toss the Bonehead Doll onto the field, not at anyone in particular, more of a middle finger type protest of the FO, you know an FO to the FO.

      The Dodgers really do have the luxury of toying with the current personnel in the bully, but they don’t seem to have the desire to shake things up. Insanity defined is “using the pitchers on the roster in the same way that they have consistently failed and expecting a different result.” I suspect that Roberts is totally handcuffed and really is not allowed to experiment, Bert is a figure head for the FO, he has his orders and he is expected to stay within the plans that Andy gives them.

      Damn, I love to see Bonehead Dolls raining down in Dodger Stadium tonight, that would be epic.

      1. “EPIC”, indeed! I would love to see that! Also remember the days when they rented out seat cushions. At games end, the fans would launch the cushions onto the field. Awesome sight.

        DR’s hands are definitely tied. He can only work with the players he is given. I would not be surprised if FO directs him to play Kelly, as well.

        It has been reported. Seager to 10-day IL…. Beaty activated from IL.

  21. No official roster move or word on Seager’s condition. Probably will happen sometime this afternoon. I agree Kelly is an unmitigated disaster. Bottom line, he represents and investment by ownership. Billionaires do not just give up on investments. Kelly, right or wrong will be given every opportunity to straighten himself out. It is highly possible that Roberts is totally right in his assessment of Kelly’s struggles by saying he is pressing and putting way too much pressure on himself. No excuse naturally for a ball player making millions to perform. But he is not the first free agent to flop in Dodger history. What makes it bad is that he is on this team at this point in time. Kelly is easily dealt with. IL time to work out the kinks. Quit throwing that stupid knuckle curve he over used against the Angels and could not come close to the strike zone with. Kelly right now is the least of their problems. Inconsistency up and down the lineup and replacing Seager’s bat more pressing. A lot tighter defense would be nice too. Lately, that has been a problem.

    1. Great news on Seager. Prayers for a speedy recovery.

      Lester vs. Kershaw! Legends Game, I mean “Old Timers Game”. I guess Dodgers will be wearing their lead cleats tonight, as always against Lester. Why they do not run on this guy is totally ridiculous….. of course they have to get baserunners on first.

  22. The good news……Seager’s strain is not a grade 2. It is a little above a grade 1. That’s great news.

  23. If Kelly comes into the game and blows it up, you just watch, the Bonehead Dolls will be coming down in buckets.

  24. Lester means Dave will break out the RH lineup…hopefully, Freese is ready to play the field so there will be no Hernandez at 1st. Joc will be on the bench that you can bank on.

  25. I always pull for the Blue, so don’t get me wrong, but somewhere down in my evil little brain, I sort of want Kelly to come in and give up some runs tonight, not enough runs to lose the game but just enough so the Bonehead Dolls litter the field. Maybe, but doubtful that that gets Andy’s attention. I still think that Andy’s ego is so massive that he will never doubt his own signings or strategies he burdens the club with. He may build clubs to win the regular season but I have yet to see that he builds clubs that can win it all in the post-season.

    Let it rain plastic tonight in Dodgers Stadium!

    1. Unfortunately Blue, those bobbleheads are not plastic. One of those puppy’s hits someone and it is going to hurt. They are made of some sort of ceramic type material. Some of them are quite heavy. Olney stated today that the Dodgers need to address their biggest hole PRIOR to the deadline. Since there is no second deadline anymore, he could not be more correct. Hernandez leading off. He of the less than .300 OBP from that spot. Turner, Freese and Belli round out the top 4. Taylor playing SS.

      1. Yeah, maybe so. Would hate to hurt someone. But, it would be easy as dropping them into the trash can. Nobody really around in the bullpen, especially early in the game. Better than the fans trying to throw them onto the field from the upper deck, that’s for sure. The day I witnessed with the baseballs flying onto the field was crazy. Took the Dodger crew quite a while to pick them all up.

        I think now for baseballs (and snow globes?), they give you a voucher, to redeem as you leave the stadium.

        1. They have not given away balls or bats in quite a while. Beach towels and tote bags are popular. Sometimes they give team card sets to the kids. The replica jerseys are also a big fan favorite. My brother had one of his co-workers give him the Robinson jersey they gave away this year.

          1. The jerseys are nice, especially for the kids.

            Attendance tonight 44,970. Looked like a lot of no-shows. Crowd looked much smaller, so I believe there might have been some left over. Could be because of the NBA Playoffs, but would not be surprised if was also because it was Kelly Bobblehead Night.

            Someone had said they would wait until they ran out, then would enter stadium as the 40,001th Fan. I guess he was left stranded in the parking lot, and missed the surprising offensive surge to save Kershaw’s neck. Kershaw and Lester matchup turned into extended batting practice for both teams. Both veterans showed their age tonight.

  26. Kersh did a better job of shutting down the Cubs and giving the team a chance to comeback. 5 straight hits in that inning. Freese’s shot to right was impressive. Cody’s second one went right down the line. Nailed it, Kike went ofer, knew he would. He is horrible in that spot in the order. His only contribution to the offense was a walk. Freese made some plays interesting. Infielders had a smile on their face when Dave almost did the splits catching one of Muncy’s throws. Muncy has definitely improved as a defender. Taylor did a good job at short. Hendricks tomorrow against Dick Mountain. Joc will be back in there the next few days with righty’s going. Yu Garbage against Buehler on Saturday. I will miss Sunday’s game since I am heading home to Colorado. Padres announce that most of their position players are available for trade.

    1. Yeah Michael,

      I agree….Kiké sucked at leadoff. Sad to see Pederson benched again in favor of the dreaded Lefty Lineup. Leadoff is a tough position to learn. You cannot just throw these guys in that spot and expect them to be an instant success. It will take time and patience for the player to fit the mold. They should be groomed from the start of Spring Training and ultimately be told that this will ultimately be his position every day (sans rest days). “No platooning, you are our everyday leadoff hitter… work hard, learn it, take pride in it, consider it an honor….listen to your coaches.”

      They must learn plate discipline, work the count, bat control, bunting, stealing, contact hitting, base running. Home runs are the least of your concern. When the pitcher makes a mistake, the HR’s will come, otherwise, get on base any way you can, and get into scoring position.

      As it is now, nobody on the Dodgers is really ready to fit the mold. Constant shuffling of the lineup, does not help matters. Leadoff position will be their Achilles Heel for quite some time, until Management changes its’ mindset.

      Have a good trip to Colorado.

      1. Kike has had enough AB’s in that spot to know what you are getting there. He just plain sucks at leading off. Joc has a much better track record there. Taylor was good in 2017 doing that job. Not so much since. Been a while since hey have had a pure leadoff guy. But I am pretty convinced that with this bunch, there will never be a true leadoff player there unless he is a switch hitter with speed who plays multiple positions so Ol Andy will love him.

  27. So the fans have cringed all season as Kelly entered games, and then blew them up. Last night, we finally had a game that the fans were begging to see Kelly enter the game and attempt to blow it up, what does the FO do, they bone us and don’t allow the fans a chance to vent on Kelly Bonehead Night. Am I surprised, not in the least.

    Thank you Michael for your sober reaction regarding the material that Bonehead Dolls are made of, are you really that serious all the time? No wonder MJ left you (can hardly wait for the response, lol).

    1. Well I would hate to see someone get hit in the head by one of those things. I have quite a few and some would really hurt if tossed from a high place. Serious? Sometimes. Depends on my mood and the subject. As for MJ, she is a passionate fan. I never met her, so how could she leave me?? We would never have gotten along anyway…..she definitely is not my type…and I am not hers…

  28. Sad to see these old, tired pitchers go out there on the mound and pitch. What used to be an ultimate matchup is now nothing more than a Legends Game exhibition.

    When Kershaw threw that first pitch dinger, all I could do is just laugh…. here we go again, Dodger fans. Dodgers were lucky that Lester was even worse. Thank God that the Lefties in the Lefty Lineup saved Clayton’s neck…. yup, the “Lefties” can hit lefties. Other than Mr Freese, the “Righties” were no shows.

    Nice that weekend games will be on National Television. Screw Spectrum.

          1. True
            Look at the bright side of things. You might get to see Kelly tonight in all his glory.

  29. Yesterday, you know that Andy sent the word to Roberts “under no circumstance, I mean no circumstance, do you put Kelly into the game. I don’t care about the win or the loss, I’m most concerned with the fans venting there frustration with my ace reliever and littering the field with a pile of FN Bobbleheads!!! Those bobbleheads are not plastic. One of those puppy’s hits someone and it is going to hurt. They are made of some sort of ceramic type material. Some of them are quite heavy.”

    1. True
      I know you must be making that stuff up. Where are you getting your information? When you said “Ace Reliever” I knew this was a joke.

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