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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
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Nails Hit on Heads
2005-06-21 11:37
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Some sharp commentary on the Dodgers today from Joe Sheehan of Baseball Prospectus:

See, it's not Gagne's injury that has been most devastating to the Dodgers. It's the loss of Milton Bradley that has crippled them. The switch-hitting center fielder was having a terrific season when a torn ligament in his right ring finger forced him to the DL in late May with him hitting .298/.345/.511. Up to that point, the Dodgers had scored 242 runs in 49 games, or 4.9 per. Since then - 72 runs in 20 games, down to 3.6 per. That's the difference between an offense that can win and one that can't.

The Dodgers simply haven't been able to replace Bradley's bat. Consider that last night against Jake Peavy, as nasty a right-hander as there is in baseball, Jim Tracy had Jason Repko batting second, Olmedo Saenz in the five spot, and Jayson Werth batting sixth. Repko is barely a major leaguer, and he sports a .308 OBP (albeit with a "backwards" OBP split in a small sample). Saenz and Werth are platoon players, capable of contributing by smashing left-handers, but out of their element when asked to play a significant role against righties. Tracy's few remaining left-handed options, Jason Grabowski and Oscar Robles, have been awful and have little hope of improving. Like Repko, each is a marginal major leaguer. ...

The Dodgers' rotation has been a disappointment as well, due to both injuries and unrealistic expectations. Or do you have another term for employing Scott Erickson? D.J. Houlton has now taken Erickson's spot and been a serviceable six-inning guy, which was his upside in March and remains so. The loss of Odalis Perez has hurt, although he wasn't pitching all that well at the time he went on the DL. The low-upside rotation was a good complement for an offense scoring five runs a game and a deep bullpen; when the offense and bullpen failed, the rotation began to look much worse. It's essentially a league-average group, maybe a bit better if Perez comes back healthy and effective.

While I give lots of credit to Paul DePodesta for assembling a bench using cheap, even free, talent, one of the reasons you do that is so that you can easily get rid of players who you're wrong about. After a season and a half, it's pretty clear that Jason Grabowski isn't going to hit the way he did in the A's system. Robles might have been a good player in the Mexican League, but he's barely able to get the ball out of the infield in the majors. Erickson should never have been employed, and is just a waste of roster space right now. Jayson Werth had a nice little run last year, but he needs a platoon partner. A month from now, we may be saying similar things about Antonio Perez and Mike Edwards, both of whom have gaudy stat lines driven by high batting averages, and who have temporarily solved the third-base problems.

There's more, but I've streched the limit of how much I should excerpt already. I think this is a plenty-good taste of a plenty-good synopsis of the Dodger dilemmas, without the usual noise. "Why they traded the heart of the clubhouse, Paul Lo Duca, last season is beyond me, but Jason Phillips isn't cutting it," wrote Maggie Haskins of SI.com wrote just a day ago.

Lo Duca's 2005 OPS, EQA and salary: .733, .270, $4.61 million
Phillips' 2005 OPS, EQA and salary: .693, .248, $339,000

Add in Brad Penny for Guillermo Mota, while subtracting Kazuhisa Ishii, and maybe it will become even more clear.

Comments like Haskins' make me all the more grateful for comments like Sheehan's.

Comments (226)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-06-21 11:50:05
1.   Steve
No relation. Fortunately.
2005-06-21 11:55:48
2.   Icaros
I used to have a dog named Maggie, Steve. She can be your dog.
2005-06-21 11:56:21
3.   Bob Timmermann
Tonight's RDGC will be somewhat evocative of this year's squad.
2005-06-21 12:01:17
4.   Dodgerkid
I'm not disappointed in the production at third base at all. Perez and Edwards are decent. Perhaps Izturis needs to be benched for a few days while Perez takes over at short. Or trade Izturis for an outfielder or starting pitching.

You know, Erickson might have some value as a reliever when the game is basically lost. That way we can rest our other relievers.

2005-06-21 12:10:47
5.   Mark
Steve, has Joe Sheehan been reading FJT lately?
2005-06-21 12:15:26
6.   Bob Timmermann
Is Derek Thompson healthy enough to pitch? If he's not, why is he on the roster? Is he just hanging around to appear in a game where Houlton gets knocked out early?

And why am I worrying about whether or not a AA pitcher or a Rule 5 selection should be starting or relieving?

Man, do I need a vacation.

What do you know? I'm fleeing the country on June 27! I'll have a cell phone in Japan and I expect people to call me with regular game updates.
But don't do that. I'd like to be asleep at 4 in the morning.

2005-06-21 12:18:38
7.   Ben P
I'm not sure where the bullpen falls on our current list of needs, but it might be a good idea for us to pick up Mike DeJean, who was just released by the Mets. He's pitched badly this year but he's had some solid seasons in the past and he only has a 1-year, $1.15 million contract
2005-06-21 12:22:06
8.   GoBears
Well, the Reds have taken Step 1 in the FJT fantasy strategy. They've fired Miley and replaced him with the bench coach on an interim basis (for the rest of 2005). So that job will be available for JT this offseason.

On Dodgers.com, Gurnick writes that DePodesta is preaching patience with all the injuries, and said he will not start firing people. So October is our new target date. Also, Odalis declared himself ready to return, so maybe we'll finally see the back of Erickson.

2005-06-21 12:22:21
9.   rageon
I was going to agree with #4 and state that I haven't been disappointed with the production at 3B either. But I figured I had better go and check the numbers first. Our 3B rank 24th in MLB with a 709 OPS, 19th with a 344 OBP, and 27th with a 365 (!!) SLG.

So I guess I won't be stating my approval of the 3B situation afterall.

Regarding Izturis, has anyone taken the time to figure out exactly what is going on with him during his past 40 or 50 AB's? Is he not taking pitches? Striking out more than typical? Unlucky AVG of balls in play? I haven't done the numbers myself, but I'm curious how it was that Izturis has turned into, well Robles, over the few couple weeks.

2005-06-21 12:23:25
10.   Bob Timmermann
But what role in the bullpen would DeJean fill? I look at him and see a guy who is better than Erickson, but worse than Carrara. He could be the next Brad Clontz I suppose.
2005-06-21 12:25:14
11.   rageon
Yeah, good thing the Reds fired their manager, so they can get back to winning. Because it certainly can't be the players in Cincinatti. I mean, come on, they've got Eric Milton, he was awesome in like 2001.
2005-06-21 12:26:14
12.   Bob Timmermann
The Reds fired Don Gullett too. I guess he is no longer a genius pitching coach. I wonder if being a genius pitching coach is related to having good pitchers.

This could make Jim Colborn look less like a genius now also.

2005-06-21 12:26:37
13.   Icaros
I hope Adam Dunn hates the new manager.
2005-06-21 12:26:51
14.   rageon
#10, at this point, who ISN'T better than Erickson? There's got to be at least two dozen guys in our system that can be brought up to suck less than him.
2005-06-21 12:26:53
15.   Vishal
well, the things that look good about mike dejean are: .363 BABIP, so he's had some bad luck... and his G/F ratio is 3.18.

but he's also walked 18 (and struck out only 17) in 25.2 innings, and he's allowed 3 home runs.

2005-06-21 12:30:19
16.   Bob Timmermann
The Mets fans I know react to the name "DeJean" like Jerry Seinfeld would react to the name "Newman".
2005-06-21 12:32:06
17.   tonmeister
While I know it's unpopular on this site, you can't have a whole season played out on a laptop computer. Yes, stats are very vital to baseball, there are those intangibles that can't be measured by a stat.
A prime example: the Red Sox continuing to stick with Millar at first base. While I'm not a fan of his and Lord knows his OBP and AVG were in the dumps for the frist 2 1/2 months, the manager stuck with him and he's been producing. And, yes, he's the guy in the clubhouse making everyone loose.
I think it's time to face facts: DePodesta did not make the right moves last year and I'm not speaking of specifically LoDuca.
The reason the Dodgers didn't go far into the playoffs is that he made the team worse. If you look at the record from the trading deadline, the Dodgers played exactly .500 ball (go ahead, look it up) If you make controversial trades, the team should improve not be mediocre. Therefore, they had no chance in the playoffs. Look at the Red Sox: trade Nomar and pickup a new SS, 1B, and pinch runner. Why? Epstein saw the need for better defense and speed on the bases...the team got better...and he wasn't afraid to go away from his binky laptop...
This year, he weakened the team more with poorer defense, and without Bradley (I'd even say with Bradley, the troubles started way before Bradley got hurt), offensively. I noted that in May, the Dodgers averaged 2.1 runs in games they lost. Funny that I was on to lack of offense about a month ago...
Lastly, is there always a reason to bring up $$ when comparing players? It's not like McCourt is home cutting double coupons because he's living check-to-check, or his phone is diconnected again because he can't afford to pay the bill (or maybe it was disconnected according to certain LA Times and Daily News stories involving Beltre and Ross Porter saying McCourt/DePodesta never called him back). It's not your $$, stop trying to find the "bargain" in player performance...

And with that, I will let the roasting of me begin...

2005-06-21 12:36:53
18.   Humma Kavula
OK, I'll start.

Correlation, this is causation. Causation, meet correlation.

2005-06-21 12:37:09
19.   GoBears
I'm betting that Erickson and Robles are gone as soon as the first injured pitcher (Perez?) and hitter (oh PLEASE let it be Bradley) return. For Erickson/Perez, that might be soon. In the hitting department, since Bradley, Valentin, Ledee, and even Bako seem a long way off, I think DePo should look for a different AAA alternative OR look for a castoff with at least a MLB track record of reaching the outfield with some of his swings.

DePodesta assembled this team hoping that the dirt-cheap bench and back of pen would rarely have to play - just spot duty, and that platoons could proceed in a few places. Injuries have mandated that all of these "marginal major leaguers" (and Sheehan is right about that) have become regulars. That makes for a lousy team. But I think he's right that patience is the key. I don't think this team, even at its healthiest and best, would be a threat to St. Louis for the pennant, so I wouldn't blow anything up in a desperate attempt to maximize wins this season. Just ride it out and hope that the returnees are enough (and return soon enough) to win the division title that we expected in April.

2005-06-21 12:37:58
20.   Suffering Bruin
Well, I prefer basting to roasting and don't get me started on the benefits of grilling...
2005-06-21 12:38:11
21.   Icaros
I think it's time to face facts: DePodesta did not make the right moves last year and I'm not speaking of specifically LoDuca.

What should he have done differently?

2005-06-21 12:38:54
22.   Steve
"one of the reasons you do that is so that you can easily get rid of players who you're wrong about"

That's the line that really befuddles me about DePodesta this year. The risk of getting rid of players like Grabowski, Robles, and Erickson is virtually non-existent, and yet he hangs onto them.

2005-06-21 12:39:52
23.   Steve
We should have kept LoDuca, and Tracy should have had him hitting third.
2005-06-21 12:45:17
24.   Humma Kavula
What should he have done differently?

Perhaps, as Sheehan points out, he should have had a little less patience with the cheap/free talent that have not, to date, contributed.

Grabowski, Robles, Erickson, and Repko are still on the roster. Werth is eating up way too many at-bats as he tries to figure out his problems at the plate. The answer isn't necessarily to release all of these guys, but it's clear that none of them can contribute (at least, they can't contribute right now). We've lost seven in a row; why not give someone else at Vegas a shot?

2005-06-21 12:46:28
25.   Ben P
DeJean has had a strange couple of years. He was bad with Baltimore last year, but then he went to the Mets and in 21IP he had 24K, 5BB, a 1.69ERA and 1.22 WHIP. This year his overall numbers are horrible but he's had some very good stretches, including a streak of 10 straight scoreless appearances. Consistency is an obvious problem, but I've always thought he had good stuff.
2005-06-21 12:48:27
26.   Steve
9 -- I thought I read somewhere that Perez is a disaster in the fielding metrics, but I could be wrong about that. Anyone have any ideas on that?
2005-06-21 12:52:46
27.   Sushirabbit
17, No matter what else you factor in, you have to realize that Penny getting a freak injury is what really blew up that trade. And that can happen to anybody, anytime, anywhere.

18, pretty much what I would say!

24, I agree with this, but it already seems like the team is a bus stop instead of a team. Do you just keep bringing people up and down? What about Choi? His holes on the inside seemed to have opened back up (of course, Peavy IS a really good pitcher). If nobody is interested in any of these guys, all you are going to do is bring up more youngsters in the hope that they will mature without the flailings we are currently watching.

2005-06-21 12:57:12
28.   Icaros
24 - You're not responding to the question I asked. The poster said "DePodesta did not make the right moves last year."

I want to know what he should have done differently last year.

I think DePodesta is doing the best he can right now. How you seen the lineup in Vegas? There really isn't anybody down there who "deserves a shot" at this point.

2005-06-21 12:57:52
29.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
All this talk about DePo should have done this, shouldn't have done that. Should have kept LoDuca, shouldn't have been so cheap on spending with our bench and back of bullpen. This is all counterproductive talk and all hindsight.

Yeah, I'm a grown man and had tears in my eyes when Dukie was traded. He was our heart and soul, and Dukie will always have a special place in my heart and the hearts of others. He will always bleed Dodger Blue.

Let's not start jumping off bridges now. We are 5 and half out, yeah that can seem like a ton, especially since our team is hitting like the 2003 Dodgers. But lets face it, WE WILL TURN THINGS, LET ME REPEAT, WE WILL TURN THINGS AROUND. Lets get Bradley and Perez back. Let DePo work a trade at the deadline for starting pitching or perhaps an outfielder.

Come on Dodgers, lets get the final 2 against the Pads and be 3 and a half back.
I know Lowe will pitch like a champ tonight.

Have faith Dodger Fans, we must unite together, and think POSITIVE.

2005-06-21 12:58:47
30.   Humma Kavula
29 -- killjoy.
2005-06-21 12:59:58
31.   rageon
#26, According to the DTs on baseball prospectus, Perez has been a little bit below average defensively this season. But it's only been like 20 games there, so I wouldn't really rely on that too much either way.

#17, umm, I think, like most people here, I'm not sure where to start a response so I'll just stick with, "uh, yeah, sure." But I'll address this much, we didn't lose in the playoffs because of the damn LoDuca trade! You really think he and Mota would have made a difference? St. Louis was a vastly superior team to LA last season (and this season), and it would have taken a lot of luck to come out on top of that series. I'll go so far as to say that St. Louis was the best team in baseball last season, and Boston just happened to get hot at the right time. After all, they WERE 1 game away from being the same old Sox, losing to the Yankees.

2005-06-21 13:00:05
32.   Steve
Lastly, is there always a reason to bring up $$ when comparing players?

Meet Darren Dreifort.

2005-06-21 13:00:07
33.   Colorado Blue
29 - I take everything back I said about your screen name...
2005-06-21 13:01:57
34.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
33-Thanks Blue, I appreciate it. I may have a funny screen name, but I live and die with this team. Go Dodgers!
2005-06-21 13:03:11
35.   Colorado Blue
32 - Darren, meet Shawn Green...
2005-06-21 13:03:19
36.   Steve
31 -- perhaps that was just me projecting my dissatisfaction then. It sure seems like I read something more dire, but I guess not.
2005-06-21 13:04:56
37.   Steve
And Shawn, please meet Adrian Beltre, owner of a sub-Cesar Izturis OPS at the cool rate of $13 million a year. But Seattle's owners are no doubt still "answering their phones," leaving sportswriters with very little to discuss except for the crappiness of their team.
2005-06-21 13:07:38
38.   Vishal
i dunno, at this point i wouldn't mind sending werth back to las vegas to finish getting his swing back. cody ross, anyone? i think he's got a better chance to hit the ball out of the infield than werth does at this point.
2005-06-21 13:09:18
39.   Steve
Don't need to send Werth down. Release Erickson and bring up Ross. I suspect that Ross would make them LeRosswerthrepski, but that's still better than Erickson gives us.
2005-06-21 13:14:04
40.   Bob Timmermann
29,
I would prefer that the Dodgers win the final three against the Padres.

It's a four game set with Thursday's game being a matinee.

But I know what you're getting at. And your heart is in the right place and I apologize for criticizing your indiscriminate use of commas.

2005-06-21 13:16:30
41.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
40-My bad, I meant the final 3, I'm still very dizzy and shaken from losing 7 in a row.
2005-06-21 13:17:53
42.   Icaros
Cody Ross in LV this season:
.270/.368/.512
13 HRs in 215 ABs

Brian Myrow is also looking pretty good:
.292/.420/.557
10HRs in 192 ABs

2005-06-21 13:21:38
43.   Icaros
And, for what it's worth, Jose Flores looks at least as good as Robles:
.312/.448/.413
only 1 HR in 138 ABs
2005-06-21 13:22:49
44.   Jacob L
I fail to see why, at this point, the return of any injured player, or giving a shot to any minor leaguer, would spell the end of the Erickson era. Neither of those occurrences would change the fact that either:

a) he's got some incriminating photos of DePo, Tracy, McCourt,
OR
b) as has been postulated in previously, he's the devil.

2005-06-21 13:25:07
45.   Icaros
Even this spring, I didn't understand why Repko was immediately higher up the depth chart than Ross, especially considering the fact that DePo personally brought Ross in.

He played some CF this spring and seems to be a decent outfielder. All Repko really has on him is more speed.

2005-06-21 13:26:33
46.   Vishal
his speed, and his arm. other than that, repko is pure [s]crappyness.
2005-06-21 13:30:06
47.   The Anc
46
But Repko's only a .7 Eckstein on the Scrappy-o-meter
2005-06-21 13:31:35
48.   GoBears
I sure like Repko defensively. What an arm! No, he's not a ML-quality hitter. But neither are Grabowski or Werth (at this point). Since none of them can hit, and we don't have any options who can until Bradley returns, I'd say keep playing Repko. At least he contributes on defense. I know - shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic, but still...
2005-06-21 13:34:29
49.   Jacob L
I also don't think we're ever going to see the following transaction entry:

The Los Angeles Dodgers activate outfielders Milton Bradley, Milton Bradley, Milton Bradley, and Milton Bradley from the disabled list and designate outfielders Jason Grabowski, Jason Repko, Jason Werth, and infielder Oscar Robles.

2005-06-21 13:35:33
50.   heato
Maybe Depo is trying to write a book to counteract Joe Morgan's sure to be forthcoming "Smartball." Depo can call his book "Scrappyball."
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-06-21 13:36:40
51.   Dodger Blue Notes
This team will make a run. Bradley will come back and Werth will snap out of it and we will start scoring runs. The pitching is better than what they have shown and will become more consistent. The Dodgers will contend and win the NL West.

Now...

Who wants ginger snaps?

2005-06-21 13:36:40
52.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
46-hit the nail on the head, Repko can flat out fly, the guy can get down the line quick.
And has somewhat of a cannon. His stance is way to open, and he tries to pull everything.
2005-06-21 13:37:34
53.   Linkmeister
Bob, re: #6

The Hawai'i time zone means I could call you at 0700 rather than 0400. How's that?

2005-06-21 13:38:15
54.   Steve
Nothing's wrong with Repko that beating out a couple dozen bunt hits won't fix.
2005-06-21 13:40:18
55.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
54-LOL- he needs lessons from Maury Wills and Dave Roberts, I'm telling you the guy is lightning fast.
2005-06-21 13:41:41
56.   Steve
First the Grabowski Brigade, now Repko's Heroes.
2005-06-21 13:48:52
57.   Bob Timmermann
Actually it looks like West Coast night games start around 11 in the morning in Japan. But they start the next day, so if you call me I will be able to tell you who won already.
2005-06-21 13:53:31
58.   Dodgerkid
Bob are you moving out of the country? I am too. I also just got a Sadarahu Oh (spelling) Tokyo Giants jersey. Now I am a true baseball dork.
2005-06-21 13:58:03
59.   Mark
Is it wrong of me, upon reading "a .7 Eckstein", to think of Warwick Davis?
2005-06-21 13:59:05
60.   Spageticus
Maggie Haskins — wasn't she the Dream Job failure? Yes, she was. What on earth is she doing a) writing for anything with the name 'Sports Illustrated', and b) even mentioning the Dodgers? Something is definitely wrong with this world when people get jobs just because they were on television. She even open up with a cliche quote.
2005-06-21 13:59:31
61.   Mark
Warwick Davis: http://tinyurl.com/bryjq

Now that's scrappy.

2005-06-21 14:02:20
62.   Bob Timmermann
I'm just going on vacation for a week.

I'm not going into exile. Although it has certain charms. Or at least it did in Hemingway novels.

2005-06-21 14:03:14
63.   the OZ
I think a .7 Eckstein would have to be an Eddie Gaedel.
2005-06-21 14:04:36
64.   Yakface
I just had to register to say that my dad just moved to Japan a year ago and that Im visiting in july. K. thats all. Oh and Why didnt we hit Edwards with choi on second instead of groundoutski?
2005-06-21 14:04:51
65.   Steve
And she was on a lame "reality TV" show? Ugh...

GIVE ME BACK MY NAME!

2005-06-21 14:05:21
66.   the OZ
Whoops, that joke has already been made. Sorry.
2005-06-21 14:14:08
67.   Bob Timmermann
Edwards neeeded to be saved as a defensive replacement in case the Dodgers took the lead going into the 9th.

Hey, that's all I got!

2005-06-21 14:18:02
68.   dzzrtRatt
If we want to be as good as San Diego and Washington and the motley group of NL Wild Card contenders, we can do that if Bradley comes back strong, Izzy breaks out of his slump, we can keep the rest of the starting lineup healthy, and if we secure one more good starting pitcher by trading a few excess prospects. A hitter for left field would be nice, but I worry that in this market, trying to fill both needs will get us into a ruinous competition for scarce talent, a race that jeopardizes the future. No matter how many trades we pull off, the 2005 LA Dodgers cannot be willed into excellence at the level of St. Louis or the better AL teams. If you want to see a potential World Series contender this year, drive over to Anaheim. If you're happy with a scrappy team that might crawl into the playoffs but will lose in the first round, stick with Chavez Ravine.
2005-06-21 14:21:43
69.   Colorado Blue
68 - I'd rather get run over in Anaheim than root for the Angels...
2005-06-21 14:22:42
70.   Colorado Blue
57 - I'll settle for the Powerball numbers!
2005-06-21 14:24:10
71.   dzzrtRatt
Here's some encouragement from Joe Morgan-in-training, Ryne Sandberg on Yahoo!:

1. Why should fans in L.A. remain positive over the slumping Dodgers?

The Los Angeles Dodgers are fortunate to be in a division where every team has been playing poorly. Even after suffering their seventh straight loss on Monday, the Dodgers still find themselves only 5½ games out of first place.

The Dodgers are feeling the effects of the offseason departures of Shawn Green and Adrian Beltre, and the injury problems of Eric Gagne have taken their toll. But it'll take only two good weeks and a decent hot streak for the Dodgers to find themselves at the top of the NL West again.

Jim Tracy is capable of rallying this team into a winning streak. The Dodgers have games within their division in the next two weeks against San Diego and Arizona. They'll be able to decide their own fate.

2005-06-21 14:25:11
72.   bojangles
For the Bright-eyed and Bushy-tailed who continue to believe Penny's injury was the malicious doing of the god of flukes: it was predicted at the time of the trade. The moment was unknown; the fact was not.
The young and still-artless GM has assembled a physically fragile roster, highly likely, absent creative mortgaging of soul to other gods and devils, to deliver a worn path to the DL. He played craps; he has, 'til now, crapped out. Most onlookers would blame him for playing a game with such punishing odds.
His worshippers continue to blame the game, or the dice, or the table, or the lighting, or that distracting cocktail waitress with the oppressive uni and the against-the-grain genuinely warm smile. So far, he's reaping exactly what he's sown, and he's telling us, loud and clear, that the Dodger farm system just ain't what it has been widely purported and reported to be.
With that in mind, an answer for those who ask what he should have done last year? What Evans and some of his predecessors should have done as well - better to be June and July sellers, reap a whirlwind of young talent, some of whom might actually become reliable Big Leaguers. Don't take your marginal success in a weak division too seriously. Don't take what little surplus playing capital you have, and trade it for someone else's physically-marginal (Penny) and talent-questionable (Choi - the Korean Dave Kingman) guys. Go deeper in the Marlin system (as I wished Evans had done in the Braves system during the Sheffield adventure)
and begin to build a stocking pond you can promote players from with some genuine trust.
In his defense (and that of Dan Evans, and others) I don't know what the final marching orders have been from owners. Are they trying this nigh-impossible task of "rebuilding-on-the-run?" See New York Knicks and Rangers of last decade for only two of many sobering results of that design....
2005-06-21 14:29:18
73.   Colorado Blue
71 - It's funny how ludicrous I find paragraph #2 and reasonable I find paragraphs #1 and #3 (sans the whole JT-rallying thingy).
2005-06-21 14:30:28
74.   rageon
#72, I wouldn't go so far as to say that the farm system isn't what it was purported to be. No one ever claimed we were stocked with ready-for-the-majors AAA players. Nearly all the high-ceiling talent is playing in A or AA this season. I don't think anyone expected anyone in the minors to make a major contribution this season. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much until 2007. In the mean time, I'm all for trying to fill holes via trades or free agents (signed to relatively short deals) to try to win.
2005-06-21 14:32:48
75.   Icaros
By going "deeper into the Marlins system" we would have gotten more of what we already have, good prospects who are too young for the majors.

I don't think you can judge the LA farm system as "just ain't what it has been widely purported and reported to be" when its top prospects are only 21-22 years old (or younger). If none of them have made it three years from now, then your criticism will be valid.

2005-06-21 14:35:30
76.   rageon
I just had to post this, as I caught my eye:

130, 131, 123, 104, 113, 123, 121, 150, 127, 120

That's the pitch counts for Livian's last 10 starts. That dude's a freak.

2005-06-21 14:38:50
77.   scareduck
75: Icaros, we're now three years out of the 2002 draft, Evans' first and widely heralded as the beginning of Baseball America-approved drafts. The Dodgers' minor leaguers continue to be stuck in AA or regress to that level (Jackson comes particularly to mind); Vegas remains a wasteland for the most part. I'll agree with you for guys like Loney, but at some point some of these guys have to come out and start playing. It hasn't happened yet. I should probably get out my BA and BPro books tonight and look this one up.
2005-06-21 14:42:11
78.   scareduck
68: I have been tempted to say something about the Angels being the better team this year than the Dodgers, and so far they're proving me right; but I have also seen them run off some bad streaks, too, and they also have the mediocre-fielding, bad-hitting Steve Finley in center. I'm beginning to think Finley is the centerfield version of Rich Aurilia at short: a guy who had a nice career flummoxed by changing leagues late in it who discovers his bat has abandoned him.

Plus, I don't want to jinx the Angels.

2005-06-21 14:46:06
79.   Icaros
77 - Well, the 2002 draft was almost all high school players around 18-years-old, so now they are 21 (E. Jackson). How often are players major league ready by that age?

In case you didn't notice, the Jacksonville Suns are one of the most stocked teams in minor-league baseball, made up of mostly Logan White's picks. But all of those guys are at least two years (maybe 1.5) from being ready.

2005-06-21 14:47:25
80.   Steve
I wouldn't be reserving downtown Anaheim for any Angel parades just yet. Those guys give away three outs a game on the bases, not to mention they're about one Bartolo Colon trip to the DL, not to mention one Frankie Rodriguez Tommy John surgery, from being in Dodger-land. And that's with their $8 million a year shortstop blocking all six of their minor league prospects at the position.
2005-06-21 14:47:43
81.   heato
Didn't Logan White's drafts consist mostly of high school players? Since they were drafted in 2002, most of them probably did not start their minor league careers until 2003. Three years after the draft still has them at 20 or 21 years old. That's awfully young for a player to be expected to contribute. Plus, bringing them up now (when they might be passable) would deprive the Dodgers of the players' prime years.
2005-06-21 14:47:45
82.   JMK
#72 - So you're criticizing Depo for not becoming a seller last year even though the Dodgers made the playoffs without essentially giving up any prospects? And you're criticizing their farm system (widely praised by both scouts and statheads) because their 20-22 year old prospects haven't been called up and immediately played like all-stars, which much indicate they must not be all that good? And you're saying that Depo should have predicted that Gagne, Bradley, Perez, Valentine, Werth, Ledee, Alvarez, Dessens...etc. were all going to spend significant time on the DL? Nice spin, but I suspect that no matter what Depo does you're gonna find a way to criticize him.
2005-06-21 14:50:13
83.   Dodgerkid
The sky is falling, the sky is falling! 5.5 games out of first, no way we can come back irregardless of the performance of the Nationals, Phillies, Red Sox, and Twins. It's hopeless. Where's my seppuku knife!?!?!
2005-06-21 14:50:42
84.   Steve
Yeah, can't say that I think much of this revisionist history regarding pitchers on the DL. Show me a pitcher, and I'll show you a guy who's going to be on the DL. So what?
2005-06-21 14:51:48
85.   everett
#71

...feeling the effects of the offseason departures of Shawn Green and Adrian Beltre

oh boy...

hit me on the head with a nail...

please.

2005-06-21 14:51:50
86.   scareduck
72: an injury was predicted, not the specific injury that occurred. That's like the stopped clock: it's right twice a day.
2005-06-21 14:54:07
87.   Jon Weisman
A propos of some of this, here's a comment from Dave Pinto at Baseball Musings today:

http://www.baseballmusings.com/archives/009959.php

"Great players do not spend a lot of time in the minor leagues. If these are truly exceptional hitters and fielders, they should have zoomed through the organization. Show me a 19 or 20-year-old starting in the majors and I'll show you a future hall of famer. It's only when organizations screw up, as the Red Sox did with Boggs and the Mariners did with Edgar Martinez that a great player has a long minor league career."

I don't know if this is true, at least about the zooming part. I would be fairly confident in saying that great players don't get stuck in the minors. Lo Duca is the closest recent Dodger example of that happening, and I don't know if he qualifies as "great" - though he certainly had good times.

Other than that ... Piazza, Pedro Martinez, Pedro Guerrero, Ramon Martinez, Orel Hershiser, Fernando, etc. - don't know if those guys ever had a minor league setback.

2005-06-21 14:54:56
88.   Marty
Anyone seen this site before? It is new to me. Sort of an Onion but about sports

http://www.thebrushback.com/

2005-06-21 14:55:15
89.   Dodgerkid
Part of being a GM is taking a gamble and making trades for the moment and not for a pie in the sky future. Remember, the point is to win World Series not build "trust" and have a "genuine" farm system. That's why we went to the playoffs last year and gave away veterans we could "trust". I'm responding to #72.
2005-06-21 14:55:15
90.   Steve
Kyle Davies is going to go on the DL. Call me Nostradamus.
2005-06-21 14:56:30
91.   dzzrtRatt
#78 I've never had a problem rooting for the Angels. The Dodger/Angel thing seems totally different from the Yankee/Met or White Sox/Cubs rivalries, where you clearly have to choose sides.

To me, the Dodgers' mortal enemies, the teams Dodger fans must root against are: the Giants, the Padres, the Yankees, the Reds, and the Braves.

I don't know why the A's aren't on this list, they should be, but they aren't. If they're lucky, the Rockies and D-Backs will enter the pantheon of hatred. It still could happen with the Angels, but not yet.

2005-06-21 14:57:51
92.   Benaiah
Speaking of minor league talent, the Dodgers signed 4th round pick Josh Wall. From what I hear he is a big upside guy and I am glad that we didn't let him go off to college. We also signed 2nd rounder Ivan Dejesus, hopefully all this signing will put the heat on Hochevar not to hold out a la Weaver and Drew.
2005-06-21 14:58:35
93.   Brent T
71 - I was going to mention this to the group as well. So the Dodgers are losing because they're not paying over $20 million to two guys having the worst years of their careers? Sandberg may be a Hall of Fame player, but as an analyst he's awful.

He also can't count. Later in his article he says his top three managerial candidates for the US team in the World Baseball Cup are Joe Torre, Bobby Cox, Tony LaRussa and Frank Robinson.

Does he not even have an editor?

2005-06-21 15:00:09
94.   Colorado Blue
91 - I just don't like the Angels; it's not really a rivalry-thing... well, maybe it is to the extent of it being the chasm between the media portrayal of the 2 teams.
2005-06-21 15:02:00
95.   Steve
91, 94 -- I hate the Angels for non-rivalry related reasons. I probably don't need to list them.
2005-06-21 15:02:26
96.   Dodgerkid
How many identities does Plaschke have on this forum? He seems to be going post crazy with the hand wringing over letting go various now terrible players.
2005-06-21 15:03:18
97.   gvette
Just got back from two days on business in San Diego (thank God I didn't go to Petco last night), and I will say this, the revitalized downtown SD has LA beat by a mile.

That said,

#72 I'll take Choi becoming the "Korean Dave Kingman" if it means he'll hit 400 HRs for the Dodgers, and send TJ Simers a rat in a box;

#77 Rob is right, Las Vegas is no help, with Navarro being hurt, and the team losing even worse than the big club (12 in a row?);

The fact that DePo is willing to tie up the present starting rotation with extensions tells you that the AA pitching help is at least 2, maybe more, years away;

#68 Bradley wasn't doing all that great before he got hurt, taking a ton of called third strikes and marching back to the dugout;

IMO if you want to remain competitive, you have to deal, if it means either Guzman, or LaRoche goes for an Adam Dunn, so be it. The Jacksonville Suns winning a pennant won't pay McCourt's overhead in LA. Oh yeah, and Erickson should have been gone a month ago.

2005-06-21 15:03:20
98.   Sushirabbit
#80, great idea! Now I see it trade GrabPoDee for one of those bottled up SS.

And trade Izturis and cash for pitcher... oh, wait, Izzie hit the skids. :-)

2005-06-21 15:03:28
99.   Icaros
87 - That's interesting, but does that mean that none of Guzman, LaRoche, Loney, Martin, Broxton, Billingsley, Tiffany, Jackson etc. are going to be great players because they're not in the majors yet?

I'd hate to give up on all of those guys before they hit 23.

Who here doesn't think Beltre may have been better off with another year or two in the minors? He finally became a great player (for one season, at least), but not until he turned 25.

2005-06-21 15:05:39
100.   Steve
96 -- None of these people could possibly be Plaschke, because they string together sentences into full paragraphs.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-06-21 15:06:22
101.   the OZ
Someone earlier mentioned how the Dodgers aren't a good first-place type team like the Nationals. So I looked it up:

PITCHING

Team .ERA. .. .K9 . BB9 . HR . . AVG _OBP . SLG
WAS . 393 . 5.42 . 3.47 . 53 . . 270 . 335 . 435
LA . . . 458 . 6.32 . 2.62 . 78 . . 265 . 326 . 389

BATTING

Team. AVG. OBP. SLG..SB. CS.. BB... K. Runs
WAS . 264..332..403..19..21..212..440..288
LA . .. 263..336..417..27..16..232..443..314

The Dodgers have reached base more often and hit the ball harder than the Nats, and are better on the basepaths. They walk more often and strike out at the same rate. The Dodgers turned this into a 26-run scored advantage despite having played one game fewer than WAS.

Pitching-wise, the Dodgers strike out more batters and allow fewer walks than do the Nats. However, the Dodgers allowed 78 HRs (while hitting 75) and the Nats allowed 53 HRs (while hitting exactly 53).

LA scored 314 R, allowed 309 ER.
WAS scored 288, allowed 272 ER.

The only difference between the two teams is that the Dodgers allowed more home runs and haven't been as fortunate with their runs-scored distribution as the Nats have. I'd venture to say that each team has encountered equal doses of different types of luck so far this season, and that WAS is not an appreciably better team in the aggregate.

Of course, with the talent we're trotting out there today, I can see why you'd have a differing opinion.

2005-06-21 15:07:40
102.   Colorado Blue
97 - Bradley wasn't doing all that great before he got hurt, taking a ton of called third strikes and marching back to the dugout;

I think his performance downgrade just prior to going on the DL was related to the same injury. So, really we can say Bradley was doing great until he was hurt, he just didn't go on the DL right away.

2005-06-21 15:13:18
103.   dzzrtRatt
#101, actually I said I thought we could be just as good or better than the Nats (or more crucially, the Pads). All we need to do that is better injury luck and maybe one good trade.

But it will take far more than that to make this team truly excellent, probably more than we should try to take on right now. As Jon has said many times, making the playoffs in this year's National League is not going to be a mark of excellence. LA's pretty mediocre at best, but so is all the competition, except the Cards.

2005-06-21 15:16:14
104.   Colorado Blue
101 - Great analysis! Man, what perspective. If ESPN BBTN did a Point-Counterpoint discussion and OZ presented this, then you could just hear Reynolds-Kruk saying that the difference is that WAS has a lot of "heart" and "chemistry" that Dodgers just don't have because they are all Moneyball players...
2005-06-21 15:17:15
105.   Jon Weisman
99 - No, quite the opposite. I don't think of the names you listed as guys that are stuck. Only Jackson, and I suppose injured guys like Miller, have gone in reverse.
2005-06-21 15:17:28
106.   the OZ
it should be noted that I screwed up and the AVG/OBP/SLG data in the "Pitching" section should be reversed. The Dodgers have a .400-something SLG against, and the Nats sub-.400.
2005-06-21 15:19:34
107.   Icaros
105 - Okay, what I gathered from the link was that a player who has not made the bigs by age 20 will not be "great."
2005-06-21 15:23:43
108.   Midwest Blue
88. LOL. I liked "The 393 pound defensive lineman is said to be a potential run stuffer if he could only improve his mobility. He currently runs a 40 yard dash in just under 10 minutes."
2005-06-21 15:23:52
109.   Vishal
bojangles -

re: penny's injury

how does a freak nerve injury that the doctors claimed to never have seen before fall under the category of something that was "predicted at the time of the trade"? and he hasn't had any other arm problems than that. knock on wood

2005-06-21 15:27:20
110.   Peanuts in My Shoes
We not living up to expectations this year because of the changed the dimensions of Dodger Stadium. It's all those missed foul ball outs -- not the injuries, cold hitting, lukewarm pitching -- that are holding us back.

How can we all be so blind? Plaschke warned us...

2005-06-21 15:30:57
111.   Jon Weisman
107 - I hear you now. I thought you were responding to me. My feeling is that even if you don't make it by 20 (impossible for college players, of course), it's still a good sign if you're progressing steadily.
2005-06-21 15:37:15
112.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
110-That might be the worst post I've seen.
The dimensions at Dodger Stadium are to blame????Are you kidding me.

"It's all those missed foul balls, not the injuries, cold hitting, and luke warm pitching thats holding us back.

What kind of rationalization is that?

2005-06-21 15:37:16
113.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
110-That might be the worst post I've seen.
The dimensions at Dodger Stadium are to blame????Are you kidding me.

"It's all those missed foul balls, not the injuries, cold hitting, and luke warm pitching thats holding us back.

What kind of rationalization is that?

2005-06-21 15:38:58
114.   Peanuts in My Shoes
"Not playing to win is like sleeping with your sister...sure, she's a great piece of tail with a blouse full of goodies, but it's just not legal."

I refuse to give up on our team. And I refuse to jump on any sort of Angels bandwagon.

2005-06-21 15:41:57
115.   Peanuts in My Shoes
113 - Sorry. I thought that it was obvious satire of some of the other theories being thrown around, such as the Lo Duca trade and the supposedly weak farm system.
2005-06-21 15:42:25
116.   Steve
Let's turn on our irony-meters, everybody.
2005-06-21 15:47:07
117.   fanerman91
#114 makes no sense to me...
2005-06-21 15:50:01
118.   Icaros
Somebody post something to get us back on track, quick.
2005-06-21 15:51:05
119.   Steve
LoDuca sucks!

Did that help?

2005-06-21 15:52:27
120.   fanerman91
Who's pitching tonight? What's the over/under on IP? How about an over/under on runs we score?
2005-06-21 15:53:42
121.   Icaros
That's better, but I think a more accurate assessment would be:

LoDuca is slightly better than average!

2005-06-21 15:54:14
122.   Marty
It's Lowe I think for us. Don't know who's throwing for the Padres
2005-06-21 15:54:25
123.   Icaros
How about an over/under on runs we score?

Let's set that at two.

2005-06-21 15:55:13
124.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
122-Woodpecker Williams
2005-06-21 15:55:20
125.   Icaros
Woody Williams for SD.
2005-06-21 15:55:53
126.   Icaros
Curse you, SSSJ!
2005-06-21 15:57:23
127.   Midwest Blue
I'll take the over (we are breaking the slump eventually, right?)

Lowe pitches 6 2/3, so whatever that makes me when you decide the o/u.

2005-06-21 15:58:33
128.   heato
Over for Lowe

An even 7

2005-06-21 15:58:40
129.   Langhorne
It's obvious that the loss of Lon Rosen has caused the team to have severe doubts about its marketing, leading to decreased production on the field. I suspect Bradley tore the tendon in his finger on purpose out of frustration over Rosen's firing.
2005-06-21 15:59:25
130.   the OZ
Problem is, lately the 'Over' isn't the guarantee of victory like it used to be.
2005-06-21 16:01:02
131.   Midwest Blue
129, that's a good try.

I would place the blame more on the lack of organ music. I am sure if we made a comparison of games when organ music is played and when it is not you would see a significant CORRELATION.

2005-06-21 16:04:01
132.   the OZ
Look, it's obvious that the outrageous amount of in-Stadium advertising has ruined the players' concentration, heart, and soul.

The Dodgers Stadium advertising is such a problem that it sticks with them even on the road!

2005-06-21 16:05:54
133.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
How many people on this thread actually live in Southern California?????
2005-06-21 16:06:51
134.   dzzrtRatt
Maybe Mike Piazza's recent marriage to a Playmate has the married Dodgers feeling like they threw their lives away, and the bachelor Dodgers spending too much time trying to get invites to the Mansion.
2005-06-21 16:08:07
135.   Colorado Blue
Where's Xeifrank when you need him?
2005-06-21 16:08:22
136.   Jim Hitchcock
Big night tonight. Big, big, big big night. Don't ask me to explain how I know...
2005-06-21 16:09:12
137.   Colorado Blue
133 - Born-and-Raised, but can you guess where I live now?
2005-06-21 16:09:45
138.   Jim Hitchcock
133 - We prefer the term `Northern Baja'.
2005-06-21 16:10:04
139.   Icaros
136 - I'd be happy if you explained how you mean.
2005-06-21 16:11:06
140.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
137-Umm let me take a shot in the dark, COLORADO.
2005-06-21 16:13:55
141.   Colorado Blue
139 - Dunn and Harang are on plane to SD right now? Erickson gets released? Alex Cora makes an unassisted triple-play in the bottom of the ninth?
2005-06-21 16:15:01
142.   Colorado Blue
140 - Man you're good SSSJ!
2005-06-21 16:17:19
143.   Icaros
141 - Who did the Padres give up for Dunn and Harang :-)
2005-06-21 16:19:01
144.   Vishal
i live in southern california, but i'm moving to upstate new york for grad school in early/mid august. i might have to sign up for MLB TV or something.
2005-06-21 16:20:45
145.   Colorado Blue
143 - LOL!
144 - Either get MLBEI or, if you have limited time, XM Radio has a game package.
2005-06-21 16:21:25
146.   Jim Hitchcock
139 - We are going to win and win beeg!
2005-06-21 16:23:19
147.   Icaros
146 - Do you mean we win by 10 tonight and then come back to lose the next two by one run?

I think I've seen that before ;-)

2005-06-21 16:24:19
148.   the OZ
144 -

Are you going to Cornell? What program?

2005-06-21 16:24:27
149.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
Anyone ever log onto DodgerBlues.com? That sight is hillarious. If you want a few giggles, log on immediately.
2005-06-21 16:27:12
150.   dan reines
for my money, it's the numbers. the dodgers' numbers are too small, and they took the names off the unis.

you laugh, but think about it.

the dodgers' numbers are 1/8 of an inch too small.

smaller numbers makes it tougher for outfielders to discern between infielders.

you need those numbers.

you need them to tell the difference.

between hee-seop choi and jeff kent, or kent and cesar izturis.

those numbers are the heart and sole of this team.

and they've been downsized.

for a team so obsessed with numbers.

they sure miscalculated on this one.

it's.

the numbers.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-06-21 16:27:47
151.   Vishal
well, i'm not sure about my TV situation yet (hell, i don't know where i'm even going to live), but i'm pretty certain i'll have internet access, and i already have a computer.

also, since i'm poor student-to-be, i'm not going to have tons of cash. i don't know what satellite radio costs, but i don't even have any equipment, so i figure it can't be cheap. that's why mlbtv seems like the most cost effective way to see games. is the quality that bad?

2005-06-21 16:29:42
152.   Albert in Hong Kong
Don't go to DodgerBlues too much as I had in the past. Pretty soon, you won't know the difference between truth and untruth.

I was born in LA, but residing in Hong Kong now. I'm back in Southern California for a couple of weeks, and was at Petco yesterday watching us get Peav'd.

2005-06-21 16:30:06
153.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
151-mlbtv is horrible, get mlb extra innings, it cost my $149 for the entire season, get most all out of market games.

Half season will probably on set you back like $80.

2005-06-21 16:30:59
154.   Vishal
#148

i'm actually going to syracuse. they have the maxwell school of citizenship and public affairs there, and the plan is to do international relations/public administration.

2005-06-21 16:31:55
155.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
Talk about bitter Dodger Fans, this thread has nothing compared to dodgerblues.com

You just might like it.

2005-06-21 16:33:26
156.   Albert in Hong Kong
Been using MLBtv for the last two years, and if you have a fast connection OR enough patience to withstand the random buffering moments (I am the latter), you'll like it a lot. Quality is good I should say.
2005-06-21 16:34:45
157.   Jacob L
If Ross Porter were still around, at least I'd know what our record on the summer solstice is.
2005-06-21 16:35:52
158.   Jim Hitchcock
That's a pretty fascinating choice you made, Vishal. Good for you.

BTW, what was the political blog you mentioned frequenting a few weeks back (not that it's really any of my business)?

2005-06-21 16:44:53
159.   Dodgerkid
Does anyone know how to see baseball games on TV in Britain? Satellite?
2005-06-21 16:47:51
160.   the OZ
Good luck in school, Vish.
2005-06-21 16:54:49
161.   Christina
Born and raised in SoCal (Orange County, specifically) and now live in SF.

And I will loudly, categorically, vehemently insist that it is horse pucky to root for both the Dodgers and the Angels. True SoCalites root for the Dodgers and the Dodgers only. Everyone I grew up with in Orange County felt the same way. The Angels are nothing more than the redheaded stepchild of the region, and their current fanbase is made up of fair-weather, bandwagon-jumper types that should always be sneered at.

Yes, I know I sound rabid, overly judgmental, unreasonably rigid, and flat-out rude on this point. I can't help it, I seem to lose all sense of moderation, compromise, understanding for the other POV, when it comes to this particular issue. I hate that "root for both teams in the region" as much as Steve hates JT and bunting combined. I can't even fully explain why, but I hate it beyond comprehension. I once nearly threw my father out of my house during a Raiders-49ers game when he tried to root for both teams at once. (He chose the Raiders. Smart man.)

Whew. Topic? Like SSSJ, I also don't believe that this season is over by a long shot. And I'll take the over on Lowe for tonight, too.

2005-06-21 16:55:20
162.   Vishal
thanks for the tips about mlbtv and extra innings, guys. i appreciate it.

and thanks, jim. about the blog, well... it hasn't been updated very frequently at ALL in the last few months. frankly, i'm embarrassed enough by our lack of output that i just didn't answer the last time you asked. i've been too busy getting my life in order to actually write anything, and most of my free time is spent obsessing about the dodgers, hehe. meanwhile, my 2 collaborators have been busy finishing up their academic programs. but they're done now and things are relaxing for me a little so i'm ready to start it back up again. there are a few topics i'm planning on writing about this week. anyway, it's called the party line, and it's on blogspot.

anyway, sorry to clog up DT with all this off-topic stuff, jon.

2005-06-21 16:57:05
163.   Steve
161 -- That's a lot of hate. That amount of hate is unhealthy.

But...the Raiders?????????

2005-06-21 16:58:15
164.   Jose Habib
159 - Some games are shown live in the UK (in the middle of the night) on Channel 5, a regular, terrestrial channel.
2005-06-21 16:58:24
165.   Langhorne
Vishal,

Good luck in Syracuse. I grew up in the Albany area. I hope you have some warm clothing. Or you can warm up with a Genesee Cream Ale. Have one for me.

2005-06-21 16:59:06
166.   Vishal
you too, oz :)

re: 91

why must we hate the A's? they lost. and then they beat the giants. if anything, A's and dodgers fans both share a distaste for SF. though, i can understand if they're bitter at us over 1988.

2005-06-21 17:01:16
167.   Vishal
thanks longhorne. you know, i read that syracuse is home to the largest snowplow in the entire world. i've never lived in a snowy clime before. it's going to be a long winter.
2005-06-21 17:01:50
168.   Bob Timmermann
#150,
Seriously, I think the numerals on the unis are too small. Bad font.

And they're not kerned well.

In Bizarro World, the Devil Rays behind Nomo are pounding the Yankees and the Unit, 7-2 in the third.

2005-06-21 17:01:50
169.   the OZ
Actually, I'm not going to Cornell. I get to stay in Southern California for grad school. Hooray!
2005-06-21 17:04:23
170.   GoBears
Vishal - good luck out there. I have a former undergrad who went to that program last year, and likes it, and a former grad student who just got a post-doc there, and may or may not be teaching (he's doing research on ethnic politics in post-Soviet republics, mostly Ukraine and the Baltics.

Christina, I get your drift, but in my case, as a Dodger fan for 30+ years, I just don't feel that way. Partly because the two teams never played each other except in the preseason, and partly because the Angels were always bad, there never seemed to be any harm in rooting for them or wishing them well. My friends who are life-long Angels fans (season tix since they moved to Anaheim) felt the same way, other than the typical inferiority complex vis-a-vis the Dodgers. NOWADAYS, with interleague play, and with the Angels among the big boys, I'm actually closer to your position. And yes, I hate fair-weather fans of any stripe. To me, the Bay Area was always the worst, with the better NFL or MLB team getting all the press and fans, and the other(s) being ignored.

2005-06-21 17:06:45
171.   Steve
Nomo owns the Yankees. They can't stop him, they can only hope to contain him.
2005-06-21 17:07:06
172.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
161-That's the way girl. Let it all out. Feels good to get that off your chest, huh.
I feel the same way.
2005-06-21 17:07:14
173.   Fearing Blue
I have another trade proposal to throw out there. How about trading for Matt Lawton and Kip Wells from Pittsburgh. Lawton is definitely available as he's making $7.75 million this year, and is a free agent after the season. His 12.7 VORP isn't anything like Adam Dunn's 26.2, but at least he plays much better defense (101 career Rate2 for Lawton vs. 93 career Rate2 for Dunn) and would profile better at the top of the order. Additionally, he could fit in well as the dominant side of a platoon with Werth. Wells is a 3rd or 4th starter type, and is arbitration eligible for another year. He would fit in well with the plan to bring up starters from the farm starting in 2007. Most importantly, neither of these two should require giving up our top prospects. I'd be really hesitant to gamble as much as some have suggested on Adam Dunn.
2005-06-21 17:07:36
174.   Dodgerkid
Neat Jose. What do Brits think of baseball anyway? And are most of the games shown on there Yankee games?
2005-06-21 17:08:15
175.   GoBears
168: A fried of mine in Japan is a huge Nomo fan, and his mom even more so. He asked me before the season to find him a Nomo Devil Rays replica jersey (or even t-shirt) for his mom. I responded that I doubted I'd find merchandising of the worst pitcher on the worst team in baseball. But now that Nomo is having a decent season, and given the paucity of other merchandising options for that sad franchise, I would be surprised if they were NOT made available. Good for the Tornado. That he's beating the Yankees is a bonus.
2005-06-21 17:09:59
176.   GoBears
uh, "friend", not "fried."
2005-06-21 17:10:10
177.   Bob Timmermann
Vishal,
My memory of Syracuse was going to visit there one day with my brother. He was living in Ithaca at the time as his wife was doing a postdoc at Cornell.

Our big plan was to go find an original trace of the Erie Canal. We expected a big hike and packed food and water and such.

We asked somebody where it was and expected to be given a topo map or something. The guide goes "It's two exits down the highway, you can park right next to it."

15 steps to the Erie Canal.

2005-06-21 17:11:35
178.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
I hate the Angels, and I don't even like that manager who used to block the plate like a champ for us anymore either.
2005-06-21 17:11:40
179.   Jon Weisman
161 - It has always been my contention that anyone who uses the term "SoCal" is not a native of this area. So Christina has me in quite a confusing state - she's the first native I've ever heard say it. Perhaps it's an Orange County thing.

In turn, Christina will certainly be perplexed that this Dodger fan has always liked the Angels and has always rooted for them to do well, except on the rare occasions when they actually play the Dodgers. I thought that October Saturday in 2004, when the Angels and Dodgers clinched on the same afternoon, was a great day in this history of sports here.

2005-06-21 17:11:43
180.   GoBears
173: Fearing, Kip Wells has come up for discussion often, but this is the first time I've seen Lawton mentioned. Lawton isn't great, but you're right that he's better than what we have now. I like Wells a lot.

That said, I'd "gamble" on Dunn. Doesn't seem like much of a risk to me, other than the teeny possibility that one of the guys we'd give away for him would turn out to be even better.

2005-06-21 17:12:42
181.   GoBears
179: It's very much a Bay Area term. Christina has just been up there too long. Brain is infected.
2005-06-21 17:12:55
182.   Steve
179 SoCal = Jim Rome Thing, no? Not that there's anything wrong with that. Big fan myself.
2005-06-21 17:14:51
183.   Jose Habib
174 - They mostly show what ESPN shows, but with additional British commentators between innings.

There's a site here with a lot of British fans and a discussion board.
http://www.baseballfan.co.uk/

2005-06-21 17:16:04
184.   Bob Timmermann
I will confess to having no beef with the Angels either.

The Curse of Jason Ellison may apply to all home teams I see. My one game in Anaheim this year, the Angels lost.

But when the Angels played at Dodger Stadium, they won.

I would agree with Jon that the dual clinching games for the Angels and Dodgers (and they both ended around the same time) was a very happy day for me as a baseball fan. Especially with both Bay Areas teams eliminated on the same day.

2005-06-21 17:18:47
185.   Steve
The Angels and their incredibly good OBP team in 2002 deserve our everlasting gratitude for keeping the Giants from winning the World Series.

But I hate them, for Jose Molina Swinging at 3-0 Pitches-Related reasons.

2005-06-21 17:21:57
186.   gvette
#161 While I feel your passion, I grew up in a LA suburb with a different experience; where the first major leaguers we ever saw as kids wore Halos (old timer Bobby Knoop was from my hometown).

I have nothing but respect for the Angel fans I grew up with who survived all the bad 70's teams (Tanana, Ryan & start crying), Gene Mauch, Dave Henderson & Donnie Moore, and the '95 meltdown. As for the red wearing bandwagon fans, every winning team has them.

Look at the Angels as a bit of alternate "what if" Dodger history. What if Kevin Malone hadn't kicked Sciosca, Hatcher,etc out of the Dodger organization, and instead let them run the Dodgers? What if the Dodgers had actually signed Vlad? See, it's not that bad.

2005-06-21 17:21:57
187.   Marty
As a Dodger fan for 41 years, I've always, at best, ignored the Angels. At worst, I wished they didn't take up space in the sports section. They were incredibly boring in the Fregosi/Knoop years. Even Nolan Ryan couldn't raise any interest in them for me in the 70's. The 80's were interesting only in the way they managed to blow the series to Boston in '86. '90s? Can't remember anything about them. I did get mild satisfaction in them beating the Giants a couple years ago.
2005-06-21 17:22:05
188.   Christina
163 - Steve, I agree the amount of hate I have is unhealthy. But I ain't changing. As for my Raiders love, they were in LA when I was growing up. Per my "you never root for both teams in the region" belief, I chose the Raiders over the Rams as a child and have never regretted it. Half of me bleeds Dodger blue, half of me bleeds Silver & Black.

170 - GoBears, I'm familiar with the rationale, back before interleague play, that it never did any harm to root for the Angels because they were always so bad. But in my case, my only reaction was to be gleeful about it. After all, maybe they'd be driven out of the region and leave SoCal as solid Dodger land the way it should be. ;-)

I agree about the Bay Area's fair-weather habits. In recent years, though, it's tilted a bit, at least press-wise--the 49ers and Giants get the lion's share of the coverage regardless of whether the As and Raiders are better or worse that season. Meanwhile, the As and Raiders don't draw that well even when they are playing well--those fanbases got pared down to the true diehards a while ago, while the Giants and 49ers continued to carry a big ol' load of fair-weather fans. The ship-jumping for those is currently in progress...to which, after the years of listening to the bragging of how they have bigger fanbases, I can only say...HA!

And three cheers for Nomo.

2005-06-21 17:23:27
189.   Bob Timmermann
The 2002 Angels not only kept the Giants from winning the World Series, but they also kept:
1) Russ Ortiz from winning the final game
2) Shawon Dunston from being the hero of Game 6 for his homer off of Kevin Appier.

Shawon Dunston used to be on my list, but since he's retired, I've taken him off. Dunston was the quintessential Dusty Baker player. Veteran with no strike zone judgment who seemingly picked up at bats in a disproprotionate number to his ability.

2005-06-21 17:25:40
190.   Vishal
i used to sort of like the angels. having grown up in orange county, we'd go to some angels games when my father didn't have the energy to drive all the way to dodger stadium. anaheim stadium was a horrible, lifeless place to see a ballgame though, and the angels were always exceedingly mediocre, so i never really cared much, beyond liking wally joyner and jim abbott.

now i root for the A's and the angels' style of playing annoys the hell out of me, so i am starting to dislike them a lot. i was rooting for them against the giants in '02, though, to be sure.

2005-06-21 17:25:57
191.   GoBears
182: No, Rome did not come up with these terms, tho he might have made them popular outside the Bay Area. Coming from LA, I went to Cal in 1985, and heard those terms for the first time there. Also heard that "NorCal" and "SoCal" hate each other for the first time. One of those rivalries that only one side knows about.

And I fail to see any redeeming value in Jim Rome's schtick. I believe that it is all a show - that he's not really like that off the air, and I'll give him credit for finding a style that works for him and makes him lots of money. But I find him impossible to listen to. He's in your face with whatever happens to be the most popular opinion of the day. It's not clear he's ever had an original thought. But then, I'll admit, I stopped paying any attention to him a few years ago, so if he's changed, I wouldn't know.

2005-06-21 17:26:16
192.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
Want to know the truth on the whole Angels vs. Dodgers debate. I know a lot of Angel fans who suddenly came out of the closet after 2002. Ummmm. Very interesting indeed.

They swear up and down they've been fans since the late 80's and early 90's.

Yet when I asked them about Wally Joyner and Brian Downing, they couldn't remember these names. Ummmmm. Very interesting.

2005-06-21 17:29:02
193.   Bob Timmermann
A friend of mine today pointed out that the 1992 Angels may have been one of the worst constructed teams. Or at least unusual.

Donning the Angels uniform that year were:
Mike Fitzgerald
Lee Stevens
Luis Sojo
Gary Gaetti
Chad Curtis
Junior Felix
Luis Polonia
Hubie Brooks
Von Hayes
Alvin Davis
Ken Oberkfell
Rob Ducey
Chuck Crim
Steve Frey
Don Robinson

2005-06-21 17:31:36
194.   Bob Timmermann
The first baseball game I ever attended in person was Alex Johnson Bat Night.

I think that might explain why I grew up so weird.

2005-06-21 17:33:26
195.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
194-LOL
2005-06-21 17:34:42
196.   Christina
185 - ah yes, Steve, you hit on the one and only situation in which I ever rooted for the Angels. As much as I hated the Angels winning the WS, the thought of Barry Bonds and the Giants, who compete in the same division as the Dodgers after all, was even worse.

And I'll happily plead guilty to using Bay Area terminology for many things, including SoCal. I grew up in SoCal (heh), and while my deepest love remains with the Dodgers and Raiders because those were the region's teams that I rooted for as a child, in all other things SF is truly my heart and my home. SoCal is indeed very much a Bay Area term used by both the SF-born and the transplants like myself, largely because of the way so much of the rest of the country assumes that California is the same from north to south.

I do pronounce "inland" the proper SoCal way, though, and likely always will. ;)

2005-06-21 17:35:57
197.   Fearing Blue
#180: Here are my rational and irrational concerns about Dunn:

1) He's a lot like Hee Seop Choi and J.D. Drew in that he works the count and waits for a mistake. My educated hypothesis is that these types of hitters do relatively worse against good pitchers while feasting on poor pitchers. Three of these types of hitters could very well be too much of a "good" thing.

2) After this year, we're going to end up paying market value for him ($10+ million in arbitration), even if we sign him to an extension. There are other options in trade and free agency for 2006 who are similarly valued and valuable. Thus, any evaluation of acquiring him should rest strictly on his contribution to our playoff chances in 2005.

3) While Dunn may push us over the edge to making the playoffs, I don't think he increases our chances significantly once there. Our lack of dominant pitching would still be our biggest postseason weakness.

4) Even though everyone wants to play for today, we are very much on the brink of going on a dominant run in 2007 and beyond. In order to do so, we only need a few of our top prospects to pan out. Unfortunately, it's difficult to predict which ones those will be. As a framework for understanding how good these kids are, consider that the Dodgers system ranked 2nd in the majors even though the vast majority of our top prospects were in A or AA (only Edwin Jackson and Willy Aybar were in AAA at the time).

5) Over the past three years, Dunn has OPS'ed .936 prior to the break, but only .811 after. He did break that trend for the first time last year (.973 before vs. 937 after).

6) Lastly, I share Howard Fox's gut concern about Adam Dunn turning out to be a bust, even though I very much like him as a player. He just doesn't "feel" like a fit for this team.

2005-06-21 17:37:32
198.   ElysianPark62
#179...LOL, Jon. Another name that natives don't use is "Cali." That bugs me far more.
2005-06-21 17:38:14
199.   Jon Weisman
197 - I think No. 4 is a good point. Because you can't predict which prospects will make it, it is nice to have as many as possible. At the same time, you don't want to be rigidly opposed to a trade if you like the deal, just for the sake of preserving all your darts to throw.
2005-06-21 17:39:18
200.   Fearing Blue
I just got this error when hitting the Baseball Prospectus homepage:

Parse error: parse error, unexpected $ in /www/interns/bmurphy/www_include/teamtracker.php on line 278

Looks like poor B Murphy may not have an internship for much longer.

It's back up now though.

Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2005-06-21 17:45:41
201.   GoBears
197,199: I guess the reason I don't worry about Dunn is that he's so good so young, and well-deserving (if anyone is) of the money he'll get. When those prospects do start hitting the Show, some of our more expensive players (Kent, Valentin, maybe even Drew) will likely be off the payroll, so we can afford a big investment in a young stud. And are any of our top prospects outfielders? Unless you argue that Dunn will end up at first base, I don't see that he'd be blocking anyone in the minors, who all seem to be infielders, pitchers, or catchers.

And I agree that we shouldn't advocate mortgaging the future to win this year - I also don't think anything will make this team a WS contender in 2005 - but I don't see the mortgage as that expensive (most prospects will NOT pan out), nor do I see Dunn as a short term payout - he should be great for several more years.

2005-06-21 17:46:31
202.   brendan glynn
*#197
) He's a lot like Hee Seop Choi and J.D. Drew in that he works the count and waits for a mistake. My educated hypothesis is that these types of hitters do relatively worse against good pitchers while feasting on poor pitchers

doesn't almost everyone do worse against good pitchers, thus making them good pitchers????

Good thing that there is a lot more "worse" pitchers than good pitchers in the league.

2005-06-21 17:49:48
203.   brendan glynn
are not is. damn
2005-06-21 17:51:28
204.   Fearing Blue
#202: The theory is that if you have two players with the same offensive production (for instance, OPS), the swing-at-everything guy will hit relatively better against good pitchers, and the wait-and-swing guy will hit relatively better against poor pitchers. The reasoning is that the wait-and-swing guys gets his value from walks (which good pitchers don't give up) and waiting to crush mistakes (which good pitchers don't give up). The swing-at-everything guy is better at hitting pitches all over the zone, and doesn't walk anyway so doesn't lose as much value based on the control of the good pitcher.
2005-06-21 17:52:26
205.   LAT
#191 Thank you Bears. Everything about Rome, right up to his goatee, is contrived. His made up lexicon drives me nuts. What is that some kind of poor man's "A Clockwork Orange." The people who call in to "rant" (no disrespect to Dennis Miller who is one of my favorites) are fools. And they make this a competition no less. His stunt with Jim Chrissie Everret was a total set-up (even if Everret was too stupid to see it coming). Finally, the way people lobby for tour-stops. I'd pay for him not to come to my home town. That way his fans will stay home in their double wides brushing their tooth.
2005-06-21 17:54:00
206.   Fearing Blue
#201: I do see Dunn as a future 1B, if not one already. The Reds have a similar view, which is why they're trying to move Casey. His career defensive rate in LF (Rate2 of 93) is worse than Grabowski's (Rate2 of 95).
2005-06-21 17:55:07
207.   Spageticus
I agree with those who sais the same thing that I am echoing here (imagine that). I have always liked the Angels (nowhere near as I have loved the Dodgers). Growing up in the I.E., I often went to Angels games because it was a few minutes closer and never (used to be) as crowded. I rooted hard for the Angels in 2002, especially when they dispatched the hated ones. Even now my favorite players are Erstad and Figgins (mind you, when they play the Dodgers they are booed roundly).

In other news, what is the consensus on a Dodgers trade for Aubrey Huff? He's played a little outfield and at third. I know he's been down a little this year, but the guy's the real thing (as in a solid, young player).

2005-06-21 17:56:14
208.   Christina
198 - yeah, we don't use Cali up here either. That's a term the rest of the country uses to paint the whole state the same. I agree it's annoying.

And I agree it's never a good idea to give away too much of the future for the present. Not that, as Jon says, you should never trade a prospect if you have a great deal on the table, but a WS title can often quickly fade in the face of several years of awful play afterwards.

2005-06-21 17:57:15
209.   GoBears
204: That's probably correct. But 202's point must still be accounted for. What is the distribution of said "good" and "poor" pitchers. My guess, like Brendan's is that the latter far outnumber the former (or that both are outnumbered by "middling" pitchers).

I will agree that patient, wait-for-mistakes hitters are at a disadvantage when the strike zone is unfair (too large and/or too arbitrary), as I think it was last night. Peavy is terrific, but he was Glavine-like last night in his "ability" to get called strikes on balls outside the zone. Drew seemed to start with an 0-2 count every time.

2005-06-21 17:57:18
210.   Fearing Blue
#201: Here's a trade that I think would make us a WS contender this year:

Trading four top prospects for Morgan Ensberg and Roy Oswalt.

I don't think it's going to happen for a lot of reasons, but it would move us into the legitimate contender category.

2005-06-21 18:00:37
211.   Fearing Blue
#209: I agree about the distribution, but there are two problems:

1) Our offense already seems to be built around beating up on bad pitchers. So, adding to this "ability" may not add a lot to the win column.

2) The ratio of good pitchers to bad pitchers leans considerably towards good pitchers in the playoffs.

2005-06-21 18:03:19
212.   GoBears
207: Egad - Erstad? He's probably my LEAST favorite player in all of baseball. Not really his fault, of course, but he's one of teh very worst offensive players in baseball, being wasted at 1st base, and playing there ahead of kids (Kotchman) who are already better hitters. I guess I don't hate Erstad - I just think he's Exhibit A for why the Angels are poorly run, and why they'll never repeat as long as they give bums like Erstad, Figgins, Finley, and the flying Molina brothers everyday jobs. Unlike the Dodgers, who are playing bad players due to injuries, the Angels seem to prefer the bad ones. Scioscia and Baker have the same blindspots in that regard, and are both enabled by dumb GMs.
2005-06-21 18:03:59
213.   Fearing Blue
For all you Joe Morgans fans, there's a great new post today at Yard Work:

http://baseballtonight.blogspot.com/

2005-06-21 18:07:02
214.   GoBears
211: Not so sure about point 1, but you're certainly right about point 2.

Ah well, we won't get Dunn, so it's all academic anyway. My prediction is that the most the Dodgers will do at the deadline is a #4 (or so) starter and/or a Lawton-type #4 outfielder. Even those would be helpful, but my guess is that DePo doesn't want to part with any prospects. And that he won't be willing, PR-wise, to trade Izturis easily our most overrated guy on the 25-man roster, esp. if he makes the A-S team).

2005-06-21 18:08:52
215.   LAT
AP reporting Gagne needs Tommy John surgery.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050622/ap_on_sp_ba_ne/bbn_dodgers_gagne_surgery;_ylt=AuSLDlL7hVO0U6T7Z81R.SKs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTA3cm82NXAwBHNlYwM3NTU-

2005-06-21 18:10:02
216.   GoBears
213: Thanks for the link. Good stuff. "If you hustle out of the box, you'll hit more home runs."
2005-06-21 18:15:28
217.   dzzrtRatt
#191 and 205

The worst thing about Jim Rome is his callers. It's frightening. The guy runs a "sound just like me" contest every day, and disparages those who vary from his shtick in even the tiniest of details. Pope Benedict is less attached to Catholic dogma than Rome is to his pathetic patter.

But Christina...the Raiders???

Now there's a team I am proud to say I used to root for and now root bitterly against. There are two sports teams I want to see lose every game: The Raiders and the Yankees. The Raiders' faithless departure from LA was disgusting. Any Southern Californian who continues to root for the Raiders after the way Al Davis treated us should see a psychiatrist.

2005-06-21 18:16:59
218.   Linkmeister
213, are you talking about the faux Mike Piazza post over there?
2005-06-21 18:18:38
219.   ElysianPark62
I was praying for other news, but it's not surprising about Gagne. We were prepared for it.

He'll be out at least one year. They seem optimistic it will not be a complicated operation. If they didn't operate, he'd be very likely to develop arthritis in the elbow.

It's not expected to end his career. But you have to run that through your mind. He must be so worried right now.

2005-06-21 18:18:48
220.   Linkmeister
Oh, never mind. Faux Mike posted after that, and the image of Morgan didn't show up the first time I went over there.
2005-06-21 18:25:49
221.   GoBears
I've been in LA long enough to not have gotten too excited one way or the other about the Raiders. They came; they returned. They never seemed like an LA team to me, so I didn't care when they returned to Oakland. In fact, I still think of Stabler and Branch and Ted Hendricks when I think about the old Raiders, so it's like the LA sojourn never happened. The only lasting image I have of the LA Raiders is Marcus Allen - the only U$C guy I ever liked, only because Al Davis hated him so much.

Sucks about Gagne. Should have traded him during that month he was healthy.

I was thinking about him while watching Peavy last night. Peavy seems to have a very violent delivery - I can't believe elbow surgery is too far off for the kid. Esp. if he keeps throwing 124 pitches like he did last night.

2005-06-21 21:02:07
222.   brendan glynn
That bat is a hero
2005-06-21 23:37:46
223.   bojangles
Let me apologize to begin - to those who've made good points I'll forget to address. Musta been a dozen of them.
Don't think I said the farm system was weak. Said it might not be what some have cracked it uo to be. In previous posts, I compared it to late-80's, early 90's Brewer's, when they were getting yearly awards from Baseball America and others about the wealth of talent at all levels (heard some analyst say the same things about the Indians the other day on a nat'ly tv'd game) - total strength and strength of an individual team (Jacksonville is loaded!!)can be deceptive - nice for the local fans and long-term optimists of the parent club, but generally not the pattern of consistently fruitful (vis-a-vis the bigs) operations, which provide one or two or three bonafide major leaguers every year - not twelve or fourteen or eighteeen of the top 100 or whatever "prospects" coming from strong teams, and over-rated as a result, who turn out to be Thorntons and Repkos and, young as he is, Edwin Jacksons. I've been hearing about the great Dodger drafts for four years now, and have stated I'm beginning to be a little more skeptical of the pr reports since Paul continues to look elsewhere for help. Would like to be wrong. Me(I) and Emily Littela don't mind.
Vishal: Didn't mean to imply prediction of actual site and nature of hurt.
Freakish, yes, but eminently foreseeable (for me). For this kind of prdiction, you're either right or wrong. With the help of clues from body-type, history, and pitching style, I got this one right. Paulie, at least last year, got it wrong. He can't do that too often and fulfill the requirements of the job.
Good points about power pitchers always vulnerable - but some guys have motions and body types that are more rather than less reassuring. Predict Penny will be oft-injured, unless he has new diet and new approach to his instrument.
GM has to take a short view at times. Granted. Mostly not. GMs who take the short view too often are short-term GMs (Dan Evans?) GMs who take short-term risks that are less than productive have to take the rap. The organization is still losing an occasional game it can't afford to lose because of the mess at catcher. GM takes the rap. (Do you
honestly think the LADs were Penny/Choi/Finley, as well as the latter did, from serious challenge to Cards? Are Dodgers, even with healthy Penny and Choi, a serious challenge this season? Are they, even with all those low average and obp guys healthy again, any more ready for the St Louis challenge? I thought the Valentin and Ledee signings were inadvisable, among other reasons, for their age and the fragility that almost always attends it, especially with 'roids going underground or away this term. So don't try to feed me how accidentally "fateful" most of these injuries are. Not open to it (didja honestly think Perez hadn't prophesied his undoing with previous history? Do ya think he's gonna be healthy the rest of this year/ his contract?)
Almost all trips to DL have been unsurprising to say the least. Like I said: 'til now, he's crapped out. A typical Tracy-team rebound, for reasons inscrutable to me, and .750 ball for a month, and his design will look a whole lot better. In that division, not impossible.
Nonsense about negative spin on GM. I favored his hiring over more traditional candidates; have been mildly to moderately disappointed in his personnel skills, and extremely disappointed in the way he treats memebers of the Dodger family. I'm not calling for his head; I'm assessing his work in the real world of wins and losses, not comforting lolli-pop stats. He's got some serious growing to do, as a man and GM, for me to assume I was right to support the hire.
I noted that all criticism must take into account his marching orders, which everyday fans like me can only guess at. I wish him well.
Steve: Careful with your charges; at TIME OF TRADE, I asked why this guy, and not other Marlin talent, 'cause this guy would be a likely bad-arm repeater! How often Drysdale on DL? Hershiser? Clemens before old age?
Johnson? No revision involved!!!!
rageon: valid points. different wish lists.
I don't care for a patched and temporary 90-win team. I care for the long-term excellence I experienced in my younger days.
And, so, Icaros, your note that the Marlin kids would not be ready (guesswork, but I'll accept it; some of the Brave kids are playing well in the bigs right now; I mentioned that I wished this process had been going on well before Evans took over) doesn't trouble me. I can wait another year or two or three as long as the foundation for all-around baseball excellence is being properly laid.
Scareduck: think we agree for the most part.
Witness: left side of Mets infield - Reyes and Wright. Not much older than the Dodger
"kids" some folks say need another year or two before baptism. Each was instrumental in the Mets victory over Phils tonite. Each has been responsible for a half-dozen of the Mets wins so far, and, young as they are, and unpolished, at least that many losses. But watching them, you can see they have the real talent for very good to great major league careers. And they're learning on the job, painful as it sometimes is to watch. Where are the like Dodger kids, getting their lessons a year after the team surprisingly generated some enthusiasm capital with its fans? So the offers that the Dodger kids have some growing to do are somewhat legit, and somewhat not - just another in a laundry list of excuses why this phenom or that never came into his predicted light, a list now decades in the making. (I'll risk some serious hope when the contracts for working agreements with minor-league franchises, at least at triple and double A levels, are with teams playing on fields that somehow more accurately reflect the everyday realities of ball in Dodger Stadium).
I hope I've gotten decent responses back at youse guys who gave decent responses to me.
My time here is always limited, sometimes by physical necessity, sometimes by other yearnings in my soul. Sorry if on previous brief entries I've elicited thoughtful responses, and not been present to learn from them, and honor them with at least an attempt at like anwers. Busy time comin' - be well, blue guys, and remember, Tracy's teams have been roller-coaster specialists....
2005-06-22 01:09:47
224.   bojangles
Just one last on Dave Kingman. A while before Mr Bill's first abstract (or at least my reading of it) I used to keep a hockey-like running tally of the runs Dave's prodigious homers produced vs. those he gave back on "D." He was still relatively young at the time, and relatively coveted as a prime talent. I concluded there was nowhere on the field you could hide him (not unlike the Phils' Greg Luzinski) and be a serious contender for the championship. Hee Sop seems like a nice kid; I wish him nothing but the best; but the few games I've seen with him at first brought back memories of Dave K. like they haven't been brought back in decades. I think his best hope is the Other League, where, if he solves his offensive ambivalence, he can dh and play first when a fly ball/k pitcher is starting.
Over and out.....
2005-06-22 07:31:18
225.   Sushirabbit
Bo J,
that was good stuff... not sure I agree with all, but that's not why I come here...
Mostly it's because of the thoughtful insights, and because some guys like Bob can answer weird/obscure Q's in a matter of minutes.... and because some folks here clearly have more time to do real work in researching stats and such. I'm lucky if I can watch the games, and maybe see something in the minors. I thought Werth would come back and do well, though, and Weeks going to the Brewer's was just obvious, so I don't trust my own eyeballs as much...
2005-06-22 09:33:01
226.   Steve
Gee, I wish you had been around when everyone was telling Fred Claire that Pedro Martinez would never last in the Big Leagues. You could have completely agreed, and history would never have changed.

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