Baseball Toaster Dodger Thoughts
Help
Jon Weisman's outlet
for dealing psychologically
with the Los Angeles Dodgers
and baseball.
Frozen Toast
Search
Google Search
Web
Toaster
Dodger Thoughts
Archives

2009
02  01 

2008
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2007
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2006
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2005
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2004
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2003
12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

2002
09  08  07 
About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

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
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
10) being annoyed by the existence of this list
11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

When You Least Expect It
2005-08-14 16:37
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Gerald Williams had a choice as he approached the center-field wall at full speed in the eighth inning today - go for the catch of Antonio Perez's fly ball with Pedro Martinez's no-hitter on the line, or protect his 39-year-old body that was only in the game because Carlos Beltran and Mike Cameron didn't protect their bodies three days ago.

Williams ducked and hit the wall with his shoulder instead of his face, and the baseball hit the wall a couple of feet away.

And that's baseball.

Vin Scully pointed out today that Martinez wasn't overpowering the Dodgers today - not really even cracking 90 on the gun, but fooling them to death. He was dominating with guile.

Brad Penny was hitting high speeds today, his injuries of a year to six months ago the most distant of memories, and he kept it close. He even seemed to do the drama and ESPN Classic a favor by making such short work of the Mets in the late innings. With the lead and no dominant closer behind him, Penny came out for the ninth to close it off himself, like Dodger pitchers did in a different era.

Just as the comeback appeared complete, suddenly the Mets had Marlon Anderson on third and one out. But Victor Diaz, who had been mocking the Dodgers for their trade of him a good part of the weekend, hit a check swing grounder. Perez - the benchwarmer with the team-leading batting average who broke the no-hitter, charged and made the needed throw home to nail Anderson and give the Dodgers breathing room. Antonio Perez, ballplayer.

There are those who accept the Dodgers' fate as losers this year, with whatever hopes they have for the future, and those who say they accept the Dodgers' fate but don't really mean it, who allow themselves to be buffeted by the ups and downs that this weekend series against the Mets encapsulated like perhaps no other this season. The Dodgers remain a losing team, but one that did what Jim Tracy asked - gained a game in the standings in a week.

For me, J.D. Drew's injury was the last blow, and it's still the last blow. It's just easier that way. I'd rather be surprised than be buffeted. I'm not by definition a pessimist -many of you might remember my morning sedatives last year to calm your nerves when it appeared the Dodgers might blow their divisional lead. Consider this another prescription.

That doesn't mean I can't celebrate what a great game today's was - both for the no-hitter it might have been and what it ended up as. That doesn't mean I think it's impossible for the Dodgers to win the lagging National League West.

I don't see the consistency that I need to see at this date to believe in the Dodgers - not in their pitching, not in their offense, not in their defense and not in their managing. That's why the Dodgers have so much trouble building more than a two-game winning streak.

But I can still root, and revel in a victory.

And that's baseball.

* * *

"We have a lot more similarities than differences," DePodesta said. "People point out the differences, but they are few and far between.

"Anyway, it's healthy to disagree. It creates discussion and debate. It's important with a scouting director and an assistant general manager too. It's important not to have clones."

- Paul DePodesta on Jim Tracy, via Steve Henson in Monday's editions of the Times.

Comments (169)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-08-14 17:26:14
1.   scanderbeg
Antonio Perez has consistently produced in his limited opportunities this year. I know Robles is a Moneyball type player, what with his ability to take pitches and get on base; however I don't understand why Tracy doesn't try to find more room for Perez in the lineup day in and day. Replace Phillips at first (whenever he would normally play there) and play Perez. He's certainly earned it in my meaningless opinion.

Nice outing by Penny again, by the way.

2005-08-14 17:27:17
2.   Bob Timmermann
It's scary that the Dodgers have a better chance of winning their division than the Mets or Phillies do.

I think the next road trip will pretty much end it all. Atlanta has been a graveyard for many Dodger pennant hopes in the past.

2005-08-14 17:30:04
3.   djt
A great game, and I even had great seats for it. It was good enough that I didn't mind the hour and fifteen minute wait to get out of the parking lot.

Pedro looked good all game -- much better than Penny, who consistently dialed it into the mid-90's, but mostly kept the Mets from grouping their ten hits. Pedro may have cracked 90 once, but he was also breaking off that curve in the 60's.

And I have to admit, I was disappointed in the eighth. I've never been at a no-hitter.

I was surprised that Penny stayed in. Did he crack 120 pitches for the game? He was over 100 when he came back out for the 9th.

2005-08-14 17:46:20
4.   King of the Hobos
3 Penny ended with 122 pitches, after an 18 pitch 9th. Duaner had done a good job over the last few days, but had pitched a lot, and Penny is far more predictable. Remember what happened in Penny's last start?
2005-08-14 17:47:53
5.   djt
Thanks, Your Majesty!
2005-08-14 17:49:17
6.   Eric Enders
Jon, you'll be happy to know that today the Mets broadcasters made a point of noting that Dodger fans, despire their reputation, do NOT leave early.
2005-08-14 17:49:28
7.   Eric Enders
despite
2005-08-14 17:56:05
8.   Bob Timmermann
I have a feeling that in today's game, it was going to take a lot to get Penny off the mound in the 9th.

Not that he doesn't have faith in the bullpen, but I think that a game like this really jacks up the pitcher. I would imagine Penny was going on adrenaline in the 9th.

And when I saw that Kazuo Matsui was going to bat with 2 outs in the 9th, I knew this one was in the bag.

2005-08-14 17:59:54
9.   Jon Weisman
6 - I'm amazed they would say that even upon observing it.
2005-08-14 18:03:30
10.   Marty
Were you at the game Jon?
2005-08-14 18:04:35
11.   Bob Timmermann
Not that I saw the game, but now that I've seen a few of the video highlights, but there seemed to be a full house in the LF pavilion for Werth's homer.

Can you skip ahead in an archived radio broadcast from MLB.com?

2005-08-14 18:15:16
12.   Eric Enders
11- Yep.

On Fox Sports NY they also went out of their way to show a shot of the parking lot while there was 2 strikes on the last batter of the game... and one car leaving.

2005-08-14 18:16:27
13.   Eric Enders
Anybody else notice that Bradley's hurt again? He was limping slightly and wincing in the outfield.
2005-08-14 18:42:32
14.   Slipstream
3-

"And I have to admit, I was disappointed in the eighth. I've never been at a no-hitter."

Here's someone who wasn't disappointed:

"Dodgers executive Tommy Lasorda, who was managing the club when Martinez broke in, didn't have any room in his rotation for the right-hander. Lasorda watched Martinez flirt with history Sunday as he sat in owner Frank McCourt's field-level seats during the game.
'I didn't want him to pitch a no-hitter and I didn't want him to beat us,' Lasorda said as he left the Dodgers' clubhouse. 'And I said, `This is the inning.' Not only was the no-hitter broken, but the shutout was gone and it was a tremendous win." (AP)

2005-08-14 18:49:50
15.   King of the Hobos
I was at the Ramon Martinez no hitter. I really wish I remembered more of it, but I was only 7 at the time, and had little interest in baseball. I almost feel bad that I got so lucky at an early age when a lot of you will never see such an accomplishment
2005-08-14 18:51:38
16.   Jon Weisman
King of the Hobos is still a minor. Figures to be a long reign.

10 - No, I of course went Saturday to the loss. Been that kind of year.

2005-08-14 19:04:17
17.   Bob Timmermann
I think that people will stay longer for a game also if it's not particularly hot and the game moves quickly.

I heard it was nice day, even though I was stuck inside for most of it.

2005-08-14 19:05:07
18.   Nagman
I was actually at the Padre game today (okay, for the first 5 innings of it since I had my five-year-old in tow and that's when he ran out of popcorn, plus it was 8-1 and about as bad a game as you can watch) so I'm watching the 8th and 9th innings of the Dodger game now on Tivo.

I've read the recaps, it sounds like there wasn't even anything close to a hit all game til Perez's triple?

2005-08-14 19:07:35
19.   King of the Hobos
In one of Penny's ABs, he was out on an infield groundout. He felt the throw was late, and had some words for the ump, but it wasn't that close. That's the closest I remember, and it was a groundout by the pitcher
2005-08-14 19:12:01
20.   Nagman
19, thanks. My stomach was in knots, they flash line scores on the board at Petco and I kept watching for it and thru 7 I saw the 0 under the 'H' column... but, as we were walking out I heard a Padre announcer on one of the monitors mention Perez' triple and suddenly I felt much better. I didn't know how great the day would end up being til I got in my car and heard the final.
2005-08-14 19:22:36
21.   Eric Enders
I thought the Penny play was extremely close, but the ump got it right.

The Dodgers also barely missed two doubles earlier in the game. One inches foul down the left field line, the other inches foul down the right field line.

2005-08-14 19:34:46
22.   willhite
Just reviewed Dodger salaries and although they have a payroll of just under 90 mil, today's starting eight is being paid around 8 million and if you add in Penny that gets you to a little over 13.

That 13 million beat one of the best pitchers of all time, and that is why we all love this game so much.

2005-08-14 19:35:02
23.   GoBears
Ooh, it was plenty hot at the game, Bob. At least in the sunny seats. I was melting out there. A 2-1 win on 2 hits was just about perfect for me. 2 hrs 9 min total, they announced.

To answer Nagman's question - the impression I got from the Loge section was that Pedro was toying with the Dodger lineup. Just making it look so easy. Only 74 pitches after 7, and not very many fastballs at all. Then Perez broke the spell, and Werth struck gold. And then it was over.

Despite all the hits, Penny was never really in trouble until the 9th. Lots of 2-out hits. 1 DP, and of course the back2back doubles for the run. Both pitchers seemed to be having a great day. I'd love to go back and watch it on TV, with the better angle of the strike-zone.

2005-08-14 19:36:42
24.   dzzrtRatt
2 Bob, with all due respect, why would this week "end it"? The Padres have to play in Florida and Atlanta too. If LA goes 0-7 and the Padres go 0-6, we only lose half a game. It could happen!

I listened to virtually all of the Padres' game last night and part of today's. They are a markedly weaker team than they were at the outset of the season. They don't have as much talent as we have, which is not saying much. We don't have a Jake Peavey, but then Jake Peavey hasn't been what he was. Their 2-5 starters are far worse than ours. At least we haven't had to resort to trading one of our power hitters for Chan Ho Park. Their injuries have almost equalled ours -- losing Greene again today is a harsh blow. Adam Eaton will eventually come back, but he's merely average. Padilla gave up something like 7 walks last night, and the Padres couldn't score but one run against him.

Watched part of the Arizona/Atlanta game today, until it became a cruel exercise. Arizona is not exactly a world-beating team either. Among many other problems, they can't play defense. And if our bullpen is a gas can, theirs is a bomb factory.

This truly awful division will come down to the final week, and I rate our chances as no worse than 40 percent to take it. If we were tied with San Diego now, I'd say we'd win in a lock. It's only because we've got five games to make up that our chances are diminished.

We stare and stare at the weaknesses of this team and its outrageous manager, but what we don't see is how bad the competition is. This is a historic situation. We could win this division with 80 wins!

2005-08-14 19:37:24
25.   Eric Enders
I wonder when was the last time a Dodger game featured complete games by both pitchers?
2005-08-14 19:41:46
26.   Eric Enders
FWIW, before today's games the BPro computers gave us a 5.0% chance of winning the division and a 0.0% chance of winning the Wild Card.
2005-08-14 19:42:51
27.   Bob Timmermann
24

I've been in Acceptance for a while, but I see your point.

The loss of Khalil Greene for the next 2-3 week isn't going to help the Padres.

2005-08-14 19:43:21
28.   dzzrtRatt
23 GoBears, if you're local, FSW2 is rebroadcasting today's game at 11 p.m.
2005-08-14 19:48:20
29.   Bob Timmermann
25
April 20, 2001 was the last time a Dodgers game had two complete game.

The Dodgers lost to Arizona 2-0 with Schililng beating Brown

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B04100ARI2001.htm

2005-08-14 19:49:05
30.   fanerman
If Choi and Perez start playing, I'll scream out DENIAL at the top of my lungs. Until then, I don't know.
2005-08-14 19:50:45
31.   Eric Enders
30 - Well, if the next Aflac trivia question asks what the longest river in the world is, a lot of people will be impressed.
2005-08-14 19:50:59
32.   willhite
Just saw an article online where they quote Werth as saying he switched to a heavier bat just before the homer. Says he used that weight of bat last year but hasn't had the strength to swing it this year because of his wrist. Says the wrist is fine now. If we're looking for more denial, that's a good place to start. If he starts hitting like he did last year it could make a nice difference.
2005-08-14 19:51:51
33.   Bob Timmermann
The last time the Dodgers were on the winning end of a game where both pitchers went the distance was September 23, 2000.

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/B09230LAN2000.htm

Dodgers 2, Padres 1

Kevin Brown beating Woody Williams

2005-08-14 19:55:11
34.   fanerman
31 - Took me a minute to get that.
2005-08-14 19:55:46
35.   willhite
Assuming that Tracy would even consider starting Perez over the next few days, do you think he's more likely to 1) put him at third and sit Robles, 2) put him at third and move Robles to short or 3)put him at second and start Kent at first?
2005-08-14 19:57:36
36.   oldbear
Since the Braves are coming up, I checked some of their stats. How about this oddball one:

Jeff Francoeur: 102 AB's 19 K's 0BB's. 9HRs

Does anyone know the record for most plate appearances to begin a season without a walk? This kid might have it.

2005-08-14 19:59:00
37.   Mark Linsey
35 - Looking at Tracy's previous lineups I'd say the most likely is Perez at second and Kent at first. The interesting thing will be who gets more starts at catcher.
2005-08-14 19:59:09
38.   Eric Enders
Among those choices, I'd guess (3) is the likeliest move.
2005-08-14 19:59:24
39.   fanerman
36 - The over/under on how fast Bob will respond is 1 minute.
2005-08-14 20:00:05
40.   Bob Timmermann
Francouer also has 8 outfield assists.
2005-08-14 20:02:09
41.   willhite
37, 38 -

It might also be the best move. That way they could move Izzy down to the 8 spot where he belongs.

Although Kent said he would play wherever they wanted him to when he signed, somehow I don't think he likes it at first, but Robles at leadoff with Perez hitting second doesn't sound too bad to me.

2005-08-14 20:02:42
42.   fanerman
41 - I think Kent has clearly stated he'd rather not play 1st base.
2005-08-14 20:02:48
43.   Eric Enders
36 - Tony Cloninger batted 105 times in 1965 without a BB. Not sure if that's the record though.

Francoeur might also be a candidate for most PAs to begin a career without a walk.

2005-08-14 20:03:13
44.   Eric Enders
Under wins.
2005-08-14 20:03:52
45.   King of the Hobos
32 Interesting. I had long thought he was driving the ball, just not very far. That's when he hit the ball, which issn't that often. If he regains his homer stroke, that would be a huge boost
2005-08-14 20:04:05
46.   willhite
OK Bob, what's the record for assists per games played? I know he threw out Gonzo at home plate twice today.
2005-08-14 20:06:59
47.   oldbear
If you play Robles, Izturis, and Perez in the infield.... That means Choi/Saenz are being benched infavor of the banjo twins- Robles/Izturis.

That makes no sense to me.

The logical thing is to always have either Choi or Saenz at 1st, since both are good enough hitters. Kent always stays at 2nd.
AP always stays at 3rd.

That leaves SS as our only hole offensively. I'd start Robles there since he's a lot better hitter than Izturis is.

I've said it on other board, but in my mind our weakest lenghts our Izturis and Jason Phillips. If DePo can find a way to get those two off the active roster, then Trace will have no choice but to put out a good lineup, almost by default.

2005-08-14 20:08:12
48.   Bob Timmermann
39

Sorry, I didn't know and don't have the chops to find that out.

But I would say this guy is the leader in the clubhouse:

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/Psanca001.htm

Looks like 207 ABs before Alejandro Sanchez got his lone major walk by Dennis Rasmussen of the Yankees.

He struck out 66 times and walked once. He was also never hit by a pitch. Nor did he have a sacrifice bunt or sacrifice fly.

He must have had one heck of a set of tools.

2005-08-14 20:08:44
49.   willhite
47 -
We know that Saenz can't play every day and we know that JT won't play Choi any day so that still leaves some days for Robles, Izzy, Perez and Kent
2005-08-14 20:09:19
50.   Bob Timmermann
48
Lone major league walk
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-08-14 20:09:26
51.   Eric Enders
47 -- understood, but we're not talking logic here. We're talking what Tracy is likely to do.
2005-08-14 20:11:13
52.   willhite
Francouer has had the equivalent of 15-20% of a full season of at bats and has 8 assists in the outfield. That would translate to about 40-45 assists for a full season. That seems like an incredible number to me, although the more the opposition sees him the less likely they are to try to run on him.
2005-08-14 20:11:17
53.   oldbear
51. Which is exactly why I'm in acceptance mode until noted changes are made.
2005-08-14 20:11:20
54.   King of the Hobos
47 Even Tracy would mess that up. Valentin would become the starting 3B, Robes the SS, and who knows what Tracy would put at first. Probably Saenz, and Kent/Perez once a series. Choi is our PH. I have no idea why, but Tracy seems to have no other plan with him
2005-08-14 20:14:14
55.   Bob Timmermann
Since 1900, the most outfield assists in a season is 44 by Chuck Klein for the 1930 Phillies. But he took advantage of playing in a park with a very short right field. Klein played in 156 games.

In 1902, Sam Mertes of Chicago (AL) had 35 assist in 123 games.

But outfield assists are a much different thing now.

2005-08-14 20:15:36
56.   willhite
55 -

What's the most outfield assists in the last 20-25 years?

2005-08-14 20:17:55
57.   King of the Hobos
Manny Ramierz leads the league in OF assists with 12. That's because people run on him in borderline cases because he doesn't have a great arm. And because infielders can throw you out but the outfielder gets the assist. Francouer has a good arm, teams just haven't figured it out that fast. By the time he's been in the league long enough, he'll be getting around 15 a season because people will know not to run on him.

Jon Weber of Jacksonville has 15 assists. It really sucks that he wasn't discovered and wasted so much time in independent ball, he really is a good outfielder

2005-08-14 20:18:38
58.   oldbear
57. Have there been many occasions over the last 10 years where a RF has made a conventional assist at 1st base? I would have thought that Vlad Guerrero might have done it when he played in the NL, possibly throwing out a lumbering pitcher.
2005-08-14 20:19:42
59.   willhite
Didn't realize the outfielder got an assist if the infielder throws out the runner. Does the infielder get an assist also?
2005-08-14 20:24:59
60.   Eric Enders
The problem with outfield assists is, two very distinct types of players get them.

1. Really good outfielders, and
2. Really bad ones, whom everyone runs on.

Unless you watch the player in question, it's hard to tell whether their assist total is high because they're good, or because they stink. (And yes, I'm looking at you, Mr. Sheffield.)

2005-08-14 20:28:20
61.   Jon Weisman
Post updated above with DePodesta declaring Tracy is not in jeopardy of being fired, according to Steve Henson.
2005-08-14 20:29:51
62.   Bob Timmermann
Raul Mondesi's career high was 19 in 2000.

Joe Orsulak had 22 in 1991.

Manny Ramirez's assist totals are helped by playing in Fenway. The Green Monster gives him the chance to throw out his share of runners at second.

2005-08-14 20:30:34
63.   Eric Enders
61 - Well, I at least hope he's in jeopardy of being told whom to play by the front office.
2005-08-14 20:30:52
64.   Bob Timmermann
61

Good thing Steve has switched his allegiances to Oakland.

2005-08-14 20:48:30
65.   bill cox
My no-hitter experience.Between 9th and 10th grade summer went to Yankee Stadium with my family for a Yankee-Red Sox game.Bill Monbouquette(spelling?) had a no hitter ,maybe a perfecto into the eighth inning when Tom Tresh bunted for a hit,a supposed no-no in baseball manners.After a walk Elston Howard doubled off the wall and the Yanks won.I was rooting for the Sox as a good Dodger fan,but had to admit the crowd electricity in the Bronx was electric
2005-08-14 20:53:24
66.   Eric Enders
Also from Steve Henson's notes:

"The Dodgers are expected to add four to seven players when rosters expand Sept. 1. More could come from talent-rich double-A Jacksonville than from triple-A Las Vegas."

Predictions, in order of likelihood of callup:

VERY LIKELY:
Mike Edwards
Mike Rose
Scott Erickson
Jason Grabowski
------------
50/50 CHANCE:
Chin-Feng Chen
Hong-Chih Kuo
Delwyn Young
------------
POSSIBLE BUT UNLIKELY:
Willy Aybar
Brian Myrow
Edwin Jackson
Russell Martin
Nori Nakamura
Chad Billingsley
Joel Guzman
Jose Flores

I don't see any possible way there will be more guys from Jacksonville than Las Vegas as claimed, unless he screws over guys like Rose and Grabowski.

2005-08-14 20:55:52
67.   Kayaker7
61 That is very discouraging...though I know that Depo is not going to announce in the media that he will fire Tracy. But, I'm hoping that this public show of support is along the same lines as when he said that re-signing Beltre was the number one priority, and that he was not going to trade Green.
2005-08-14 20:56:19
68.   dzzrtRatt
Here's another thing you have to consider as you handicap the next six weeks. Brad Penny, Derek Lowe, Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew (if he comes back) all have postseason experience. Lowe and Penny won it all, and contributed significantly to the last two champs.

The Padres? Not much. The D-backs. Whoever is still around from '01.

An intangible, yes. I ain't got no computer.

The other thing is-- at least Tracy can improve the team, by playing Perez & Choi. He probably won't, but he could. That gives him options AZ and SD don't have.

2005-08-14 20:58:16
69.   Eric Enders
68 - If you replace Houlton with Erickson (not that I would want to do that), then all 5 of our starting rotation have pitched for World Series teams.
2005-08-14 21:01:04
70.   Kayaker7
"Anyway, it's healthy to disagree. It creates discussion and debate."

I dunno. It is one thing to disagree and debate about specific tactics under the confines of a common overarching strategy, but having fundamental debate about the strategy itself makes for a disjointed organization. But, what else can Paul say in public? "Tracy drives me crazy with his voodoo lineups and arm angle thories?" Nah. You just publicly support your guy.

2005-08-14 21:03:23
71.   Eric Enders
"An intangible, yes. I ain't got no computer."
-------

Which automatically makes #68 the most extraordinary post in the history of Dodger Thoughts. ;)

2005-08-14 21:07:55
72.   Kayaker7
71 You know, I don't completely discount intangibles, but I think traditional baseball places too much importance on it. It should only get something like 5% consideration, rather than 50%.
2005-08-14 21:08:29
73.   Xeifrank
I am definitely still in "denial" with the Dodgers only 5 games back with 6 games remaining with the Padres and a handful with the D-Backs. The Dodgers still control their own destiny and as long as they do, I will stay in "denial". vr, Xei
2005-08-14 21:19:01
74.   Kayaker7
I'm striding the fence between denial and acceptance. Today's win did not really swing me that far into denial...probably because I refuse to watch the games now. It is too painful. I heard the call on the radio--a bit easier to take. Also, a dramatic 2-1 victory, as inspiring as it can be, shows that this is not a turning things around. A 5 game winning streak, winning by 5 runs in each game, would do more to push me into denial. :)
2005-08-14 21:24:40
75.   King of the Hobos
66 Does he take into account the 40 man roster? We may add a few with Wunsch and Gagne to the 60 day DL. Ross, Edwards, Young, Aybar, Rose, Martin, Jackson, and Osoria are the most likely, with Grabowski, Erickson, and Kuo the other options. Am I missing something?
2005-08-14 21:27:54
76.   Uncle Miltie
Perez showed that he is baseball savvy when he threw the ball home in the 9th inning to cut down the potential tying run. That should at least earn him 1 start. Who's going to start at 1B against John Smoltz on Tuesday- Clutch Outmaker Jason Phillips or Professional Hitter and Gloveman Olmedo Saenz?
2005-08-14 21:36:07
77.   Eric Enders
75 -- Just to be clear, those are my predictions, not DePo's. Note where the quote marks end.

Of the guys I listed, the following are not on the 40-man roster:

Scott Erickson
Jason Grabowski
Chin-Feng Chen
Hong-Chih Kuo
Brian Myrow
Nori Nakamura
Chad Billingsley
Joel Guzman

We can call up two of those guys easily by putting Gagne and Wunsch on the 60-day DL. (Dreifort & Bako are already there.) If we want to call up more than one of these guys, we'd have to DFA somebody already on the 40-man (coughjoelhanrahancough).

Also, I forgot to list Osoria, who is already on the 40-man and whom I'd put in the "very likely" category.

You mentioned Ross, who I think has basically zero chance, given that both his LV and LA hitting stats stink. In fact, I think he's a better candidate to be DFAed than called up.

2005-08-14 21:47:58
78.   capdodger
Reading through the game comments makes me think back to the first game I went to at Dodger Stadium. The date was August 17th, 1992. My grandmother took me to the game and we managed to get seats in the first row of the top deck. I still have the program from that game, but unfortunately, in the interveing years, my mother threw away the scorecard I kept from Kevin Gross's no-hitter. (sniffle)
2005-08-14 22:03:44
79.   popup
#78, that is impressive. Though you may no longer have the scorecard, Vin's call of the last out of the game is available (at least it was the last time I checked) at the Dodgers website.

Stan from Tacoma

2005-08-14 22:17:02
80.   Louis in SF
Kyayker7

I think if DePo wanted to give Tracy a lesser endorsement-he could have said something as bland as he is under contract for another year, doing the best job he can with the injuries he has had this year and I am looking forward to a good charge down the stretch by the Dodgers. As I have stated many times on this blog-the Dodger season and its dissapointment has many fathers' and DePodesta is definitely one of them I have found many of Tracy's decisions this year strange at best, especially Choi's playing time. However, some have called for DFAing Phillips? Makes no sense-Navarro is only just developing. Sadly the stolen bases against him have lots to do with Doddger pitchers holding runners on.
I feel the Dodgers have one run left and I only hope it can happen soon so the games against SD mean something

2005-08-14 22:25:36
81.   Eric Enders
"I feel the Dodgers have one run left"
---------

So do I, and I hope they use it wisely. Like beating San Diego in a game, 1-0.

2005-08-14 22:29:39
82.   dzzrtRatt
I think the idea of DFA'ing Phillips, while not sensible using purely baseball criteria, would have a salutary effect on the DePo-Tracy relationship. It's like the Sean Connery scene in "The Untouchables" where he tutors Kevin Costner on the Chicago Way: If he brings a knife, you bring a gun. DePo, if Tracy benches your pet project, you DFA his. That's the Dodger Way.
2005-08-14 22:31:09
83.   dzzrtRatt
"It's important not to have clones."

Didn't Bush say that in the State of the Union?

2005-08-14 22:33:43
84.   Eric Enders
I could see DePo calling up Russell Martin to replace Phillips.

"You call that a knife? Now THAT'S a knife."

2005-08-14 22:35:30
85.   chumsferd
Intelligence and wisdom are two different things. You can be intelligent without being wise and you can be wise but not that intelligent. What Depo said in his quote is quite wise but I had always operated under the assumption that Depo was smarter than I was. I'm not so sure anymore.

Giving Tracy a vote of confidence now is unfathomable to me. Essentially, the only way a manager can have a tremendous influence on the game is:
1. setting the lineup
2. managing the bullpen.

Tracy gets an F+ for 1.

2005-08-14 22:57:41
86.   Eric Enders
85 - The most important part of a manager's job, by far, is to instill a sense of team cohesion and get players to bust their butts for him. There's no real indication that Tracy is failing in that portion of his job. The game strategy situations really amount to very little in the grand scheme of things.
2005-08-14 23:22:03
87.   regfairfield
86 - Yes, but having your entire bench consist of 770+ OPS guys while the team you put on the field isn't any good does.
2005-08-14 23:23:53
88.   bigcpa
86- I think 85 meant the choosing starting players, not the order of the lineup. Playing Choi/Perez vs. Philiips/Robles could be worth .5 runs/game no?
2005-08-14 23:33:35
89.   Jim Hitchcock
86 - Yep and yep.
2005-08-14 23:36:25
90.   chumsferd
86 and 88. Yes, I meant deciding who plays and not the order. My whole point is that the manager's in game strategic decisions amount to very little in the grand scheme of things, but deciding who gets to play means a great deal.

I agree that the Manager probably plays some role in team chemistry/cohesion or whatever but that this effect is unmeasurable and there's no reason to believe that Tracy has done a good job with this even if it was.

2005-08-14 23:43:40
91.   bigcpa
Open question-
After this Phillips playing 1B vs. RHP bit, would any of you really be surprised if for instance we acquired Dunn and Tracy batted him 7th or sat him vs. lefties? Or maybe Andy LaRoche makes the team out of Spring Training next April but Tracy plays Robles over him. I'm not being facetious- either of those seems plausible to me knowing what we know now.
2005-08-14 23:56:00
92.   werthgagne31
91--nothing would surprise me when it comes to tracy.
i could see tracy sitting dunn vs lefties, i doubt batting him 7th would happen but you never know, it is tracy.
and i could definately see tracy playing robles over laroche, seniority is everything with tracy.
2005-08-15 00:04:12
93.   bigcpa
The Reds have batted Dunn 7th this year 18 times. They batted him 6th behind Aurilia last month a few times too.
2005-08-15 00:11:02
94.   werthgagne31
what does everyone think depodesta will do as far as free agents and trades in the offseason?
i can definately see depodesta making a hard push for free agent brian giles, and i think that would be a good move.
i also would like depodesta to make a hard push for burnett, but i doubt it cause he is clearly the best available free agent pitcher, he'll probably get big bucks.
i wouldn't mind getting bill mueller if we can get him for 1 year 2-3 million like we did with valentin at 3.5 million, i don't think laroche will be ready till 2007.
i'd also like to see some of our not so good but young guys traded for dunn, like izturis,repko,sanchez,jackson and choi since dunn would play 1b with giles in the outfield.
other than giles,burnett,mueller there is nothing special on the free agent market, and dunn would be the only guy i would trade for.
2005-08-15 01:13:54
95.   Louis in SF
81..Eric, great comment...I really wonder about off season free agents and trades as well since I think the division in 2006 will be weak and actually possibly weaker in 2006. I wonder if they could get a Jacque Jones from Minnisota-Giles I think is older and probably more expensive. I think the bullpen is going to be key next year and the Dodger bullpen will have many questions. The bullpen has been sub-par this year and what Gagne will be like remains to be seen. Of the promising kids who will be ready?
2005-08-15 02:48:25
96.   Bob Timmermann
I'm only posting something right now because I got woken up by a loud thunderstorm passing through my area. I think there was some hail in it.

That happens in Southern California about once every five years.

Carry on.

2005-08-15 04:22:26
97.   oldbear
86. I dont buy into the 'cohesion', 'playing hard' nonsense that you attribute to Jim Tracy. You dont have to have any 'cohesion' in baseball because baseball is a 1-1 game.

Its the hitter versus's the batter. There's isnt really any 'playing hard', 'win one for the gipper', 'give 100% of your guts" type of motivating factors in baseball.

Baseball is a game in which people exert very little effort, and stand around most of the game. Its all 1-1. Baseball is so basic, that managers have such little impact on the game. A baseball manager can only prevent a team from winning. It cant cause a team to win.

Can a manager really 'motivate' someone into hitting a curveball? No. Baseball is a skill game. You either have it, or you dont.

You cant make up for lack of skills with "effort" in baseball. So the whole 'bustin your butt' thing has very little relevance.

This is a concept that Jim Tracy needs to understand.

2005-08-15 05:44:28
98.   Fearing Blue
#77: My predictions are similar:

1) Mike Rose
2) Mike Edwards
3) Franquelis Osoria
4) Scott Erickson
5) Jason Grabowski
6) Willy Aybar
7) Edwin Jackson

I wouldn't expect any of the guys you listed as 50/50 to be called up, for the following reasons:
Ching-Feng Chen is not on the 40-man roster and seems to be lower on the depth chart than at least 7 other outfielders.
Hong-Chih Kuo hasn't built up enough arm strength from his injury. He's still being used very cautiously and the pressure of a major league game situation could lead to overthrowing.
Delwyn Young doesn't have a major league position. Willy Aybar plays plus defense at second and third base, so I think he would be the likelier candidate of the two.

I don't expect Joel Hanrahan to be DFA'ed as he has been pitching well recently, but Cody Ross should be looking over his shoulder.

2005-08-15 07:04:50
99.   Ben H
Wouldn't the callups depend on where the Dodgers sit on Sept. 1st? If they are still in the running, I can see Erickson called up because of his experience (it hurts to say that), but if they are clearly done for the year, would it not make more sense to give one of the younger players a chance instead?
2005-08-15 07:05:03
100.   Eric Enders
97 - While you have a good point, you also missed mine. I agree with you that managers have little impact on the game itself. This is why the most important part of their job -- the area on which they can have the most impact -- is the nefariously hard to define "team unity." I'm not saying Tracy is great in this category, by the way, I'm just saying there's nothing to indicate he's failing at it either.

Look, there's a huge difference between a manager who has the respect of his players and a manager who is disrespected and thereby loses control of his team. If you want an example of the latter, just look at the way Cincinnati sleepwalked through the early part of the season with Dave Miley at the helm, resulting in a disastrous season for them. Basically, I think you should keep a manager around until the players no longer maintain respect and play their hardest for him. Tracy has not reached that point yet, and so I feel it would be pointless to fire him at this juncture -- especially since keeping him around gives you an extra $1 million (or whatever the new skipper's salary would be) to spend on players instead of the manager.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2005-08-15 07:17:47
101.   Steelyeri
96- I woke up due to the same storm. Very weird to say the least. It seemed to come out of nowhere.
2005-08-15 07:31:31
102.   Eric Enders
I too woke up due to the same sto-- oh, wait, I'm never gonna get you guys to fall for that.
2005-08-15 07:34:25
103.   Eric L
I woke up cause of that darn storm and wasn't able to get back to sleep. I think I've been up since 5am and finally rolled out of bed at 6.
2005-08-15 07:36:09
104.   Penarol1916
I woke up because my son had insane diaper rash along with an upset stomach and teething pains. No storm excuse here in Chicago.
2005-08-15 07:54:00
105.   Colorado Blue
I thought yesterday's game was a thing of beauty... to win 2 - 1 on 2 well-timed hits was great. Top it off with Perez nailing the runner at the plate; well, it was just a good day. I am moving into a new category of my own creation: DEACCEPTANCE.
2005-08-15 07:58:53
106.   Marty
I not only got woken up by the storm, I went out and watched it. I love thunderstorms.
2005-08-15 08:08:09
107.   Xeifrank
97. I tend to agree with what you said. I don't see how anyone player, coach or GM can get credit for something that is unmeasureable or undefineable. The only other thing I can think of that a manager could get credit for is making sure players practice, stay in shape and learn new skills. This is usually done by pitching, fielding, base running, and hitting coaches and the trainer. I doubt Tracy is out there giving APerez instruction on how to play third base correctly. But I don't know for sure what he does. vr, Xei
2005-08-15 08:09:15
108.   db1022
100 - I wonder how much of a factor the open position in Cincy is playing right now. This could all be very convenient at the end of the year.

I believe Tracy is one of the lower paid managers right now, so if Cincy offered him an average to above-average contract, he'd jump ship.

This works out for all involved, with everybody getting to save face.

2005-08-15 08:10:26
109.   db1022
105 - How about "REDENIAL"? That's my mindset.
2005-08-15 08:14:27
110.   gcrl
108 - i believe cincy is notorious for underpaying managers. ask ron oester.
2005-08-15 08:16:53
111.   Kayaker7
Yeah, but supposedly Tracy has an ailing father in Ohio. That could be a bigger motivator than money.
2005-08-15 08:17:07
112.   db1022
110 - Not talking Phil Jackson money here, more like league average. I don't know what the salary scale is for managers, but I think Tracy is still in the bottom half (not to mention only for one more year).

Plus Jim Tracy is a "winner", and a "proven leader".

2005-08-15 08:32:21
113.   Kayaker7
112 Actually, I think Tracy can succeed, in the right environment. (Didn't they say that about Jose Lima?) He needs to go somewhere that has a GM willing to indulge his desire for scrappy players. With a Tracy type of team, they'll have some dramatic wins over the course of a season--something like a stolen base in the bottom of the 10th inning, with two outs, and a bloop single that brings a run in with a play at the plate. Of course, people who get seduced by that sort of adrenalin don't realize that a properly constructed team would have ended the game in regulation without any drama.

Then the Tracys will squeak into the playoff, win, perhaps a series, but get blown out of the water by an offensive powerhouse.

2005-08-15 08:42:48
114.   Bob Timmermann
113
Do you really think Tracy doesn't want a roster full of sluggers?

I think Tracy overvalues defense when he chooses starters, but I don't see Jason Phillips as being "scrappy".

2005-08-15 08:47:20
115.   db1022
113 - I've got a bit of a soft spot for Tracy. Until this year, I've disagreed with some of his moves (bullpen management, etc) but have overlooked it because of this whole "maximum effort" argument. Coming off of the Davey Johnson/Kevin Malone/Fox days, Tracy was a bit of a throwback. His teams play hard. They didn't give up. All the types of things I didn't feel like the previous teams were capable of (going all the way back to the Piazza/Karros/Zeile days too). And he usually kept the team competitive, despite the seemingly subpar rosters that he was given.

I look at Tracy the way I look at Dan Evans - a transition piece from the "low times" (Fox/Malone) to the "good times". He was good enough to get us moving out of the "low times", but not good enough to get us to the "good times".

2005-08-15 08:57:29
116.   Colorado Blue
BTW: Thanks to Xeifrank for organizing and maintaining the Over/Under challenges of the past few weeks. It was fun and gave the games an added a dimension I sorely needed in my ACCEPTANCE days.
2005-08-15 08:58:46
117.   Kayaker7
114 I'm in the school of thought that Tracy would not be able to recognize a good slugger when he sees one. He'd be all over someone like Vladdy or Pujols, because they hit for average AND good power. But if he came across an Adam Dunn, low average and good power, he would limit his plate appearance. I don't think Dunn would have had a breakout performance in 2004, if he were under Tracy. I think, with proper nurturing, Choi could have had a breakout year this year.
2005-08-15 09:05:12
118.   Bob Timmermann
Tracy gave a good deal of playing time last year to Jose Hernandez and sat down Cora against lefties.
He also moved Werth in to the lineup last year in place of Roberts.

And in 2003, he had the misfortune of having to write Jeromy Burnitz's name in the lineup.

2005-08-15 09:09:49
119.   fanerman
117 - All he had to do was play Choi against all righties and play Saenz against all lefties. That's enough nurturing.

Perez should be playing against everybody.

2005-08-15 09:11:07
120.   db1022
117 - He had enough sense to put Shef out there everyday, who was in the Vladdy/Pujols category.

He also ran Karros out of town, though not for his on-field performance (so I don't know if that's a strike for or against him).

2005-08-15 09:13:13
121.   db1022
119 - But Robles should be out there too. For Perez to play everyday, either Choi or Robles will sit.

Izturis is the guy that needs to sit everyday, but good luck making that happen.

2005-08-15 09:17:23
122.   fanerman
Yeah. Robles should play everyday, too. But Izzy is the all-star with the seniority and is our new heart and soul. If he was out of the way, many pieces would fall into place.

Hey... wasn't there speculation that Robles is a low-level mafia hitman?

2005-08-15 09:20:01
123.   db1022
122 - Which infield is more desirable:

3B - Robles
SS - Izturis
2B - Perez
1B - Kent

or

3B - Robles
SS - Izturis
2B - Kent
1B - Choi

Dunno about the mafia connection, though that could lead to a number of solutions.

2005-08-15 09:20:20
124.   fanerman
It has been said before but I'll give it a name: The Infield Of Denial
3B - Perez
SS - Robles
2B - Kent
1B - Choi
C - Navarro
2005-08-15 09:22:35
125.   db1022
124 - NIce try, but that wasn't an option.
2005-08-15 09:26:15
126.   fanerman
123, 125 - I didn't see 123 before I posted 124.

Both line-ups in 123 are a step up. It's choosing between Perez and Choi. Though Kent has said he'd rather not play 1st.

I'd have to go with the latter. Choi has the bigger upside (more power) and seems to have improved as an "average" hitter lately, too. And if there's one hitter we have who deserves to be accomodated it's Kent. It would please 2 people rather than 1.

Still, both players are suffering huge injustices and it's a pity both don't play.

2005-08-15 09:27:14
127.   Monterey Chris
For the record, I am neither in denial or acceptance. I am in a different category...I disagree with the premise. Given the division we are in and that we have 6 games remaining against the Padres, I do not believe we are out of the race.
2005-08-15 09:28:29
128.   Bob Timmermann
127
You missed my post a couple of weeks ago about how no one can ever honestly say they are in denial about anything.
2005-08-15 09:29:15
129.   Eric Enders
127 - That's classic Denial. ;)
2005-08-15 09:33:50
130.   Monterey Chris
128

I did miss your post and I agree with you.

By the way, I had to leave the other day and could not finish our Bo conversation. I agree that Bo should have stuck with football, although I loved it when he fired our traitor basketball coach right before the tournament.

Sticking to your main sport doesn't apply to Vin...I used to listen to Vin announce golf in the baseball off-season just so I could hear his voice.

2005-08-15 09:35:23
131.   db1022
124 - BTW, that is my infield of choice as well. Just that it ain't happenin' anytime soon, so why torture yourself.
2005-08-15 09:36:43
132.   fanerman
131 - It ain't called "The Infield of Denial" for nothin'. If Tracy goes to that line-up, then I go back to denial. Else, I stay in acceptance. End.
2005-08-15 09:37:54
133.   Kayaker7
I think being 5 games out...while it sound like we are very close, in this season of .450 ball, it is a pretty big deficit to make up. It is not like being 5 games back while sporting a winning record.
2005-08-15 09:39:44
134.   db1022
133 - If the Padres showed any potential of playing .500 the rest of the way, I would agree with you. They just keep losing and losing and losing...
2005-08-15 09:42:13
135.   Kayaker7
134 Yeah, the Pads have been on a losing binge, but I don't see any reason for that to continue for perpetuity. It would not surprise me if they go on and put this thing out of reach.
2005-08-15 09:46:39
136.   db1022
135 - Most of their remaining games are against the NL West. If they can put the division away by consistently beating the NL West teams, than I guess they deserve the title.
2005-08-15 09:49:14
137.   fanerman
133 - I'm being curious. What do you think is the better situation?

Being 5 games back at a .450 clip with a team in front of you also under .500...

Or being 5 games back at, say, a .550 clip with a team in front of you that knows how to win?

2005-08-15 09:49:31
138.   Bob Timmermann
The Padres are 6-6 so far in August and that may be enough to get them over the hump in the NL West.

The Padres final 3 games in August will be crucial. They host Arizona for the last time in 2005 on those days.

They do have a four-game series in Colorado from 9/19-22 that could chew through their pitching staff.

The Dodgers would need to be within one game of the Padres going in to the final weekend to have a chance at the division. The Padres host the Dodgers for the final three days and the chances of a Dodgers sweep in San Diego to end the season would be remote in my opinion and I'm certain that Bochy would tweak his rotation to have Peavy pitch in one of the games.

2005-08-15 09:50:55
139.   Kayaker7
Just taking back just a little bit of what I said about the Pads, the loss of Khalil Greene could be big. They are going to Florida and Atlanta in this week. They can come down in a hurry. Okay, tiny bit of denial.

But you're right. Even if we catch them in the coming weeks, the stretch run against the NL West can clinch it for them.

2005-08-15 09:54:54
140.   Bob Timmermann
Outside of the NL West, the Padres play 3 at Florida, 3 at Atlanta, 3 vs. Houston, 4 at Milwaukee and 3 vs. Washington.

Home and home series against the NL West make up the rest of their schedule.

The DBacks have 3 at St. Louis, 3 at Cincinnati, 4 vs. NY, 3 vs. Philly, 3 at Pittsburgh, 3 vs. Milwaukee.

Also, home and home series against the other four NL West teams.

The Dodgers have 3 at Atlanta, 4 at Florida, 3 vs Houston, 3 at Chicago and 3 vs. Pittsburgh.

Looks like Saturday's game won't be televised in Los Angeles.

2005-08-15 09:54:58
141.   Kayaker7
137 I would still choose to have the winning team, because, as a percentage of your wins, the deficit is a smaller margin to make up. Think about an extreme situation. Let's say you are a .100 team, trying to make up 5 games in 50 days. Is that realistic?
2005-08-15 09:55:21
142.   Eric Enders
One thing that should be kept in mind is that coming back from 5 games out is one thing when there's only one team ahead of you, and a very different thing when there's two teams ahead of you.

I haven't really decided yet whether I'm in denial or acceptance. Maybe I'm in denial about being in denial.

2005-08-15 09:58:24
143.   Kayaker7
142 Yeah, that is a good point that we are trying to catch two teams. That adds more uncertainty. We might catch SD, but end up with the Dbacks winning the division.
2005-08-15 10:00:42
144.   Jon Weisman
To elaborate on a point I made in this post: I don't see why being in acceptance prevents you from believing the Dodgers could win the division.

I'm in acceptance. That doesn't mean the season is over. That just means I don't expect a turnaround. I was in acceptance heading into the ninth inning of Game 1 of the '88 series. Eckersley on the mound - looks like we're gonna lose. Doesn't mean I turned off the TV set.

It really doesn't seem like a mystery at this point.

Step 1: Accept that this is a mediocre, inconsistent team in a mediocre, inconsistent division.

Step 2: Have fun with it.

2005-08-15 10:02:37
145.   Bob Timmermann
The BP postseason odds reports has the Padres at around 72% chance of making the playoffs. (72.7%)

The DBacks are 18.9%
The Dodgers are 7.2%
The Giants are 1.2%
The Rockies are .0047%

The Dodgers are on pace for 75 wins.

2005-08-15 10:02:43
146.   fanerman
Quoting Dodger Blues:
"The win brings the Dodgers back to within five of the Padres, and continues to string along fans who actually have faith in the team. (Well, they call themselves fans; we call them morons.) "

That made me laugh.

2005-08-15 10:05:18
147.   Yakface
This season has made me deacceptantly numb.
2005-08-15 10:07:10
148.   Bob Timmermann
The following teams in the NL that have better records than the Dodgers have a worse expectancy of making the playoffs:
Milwaukee
Chicago
Cincinnati

In the AL:
Toronto
Minnesota
Detroit
Texas

2005-08-15 10:11:33
149.   Monterey Chris
144--

The difference is in what you are in acceptance over. You are in acceptance that this is a mediocre, inconsistent team in a mediocre, inconsistent division. I don't think anybody disagrees with that statement (in fact, P & S of LA Times fame made that point in March). However, I think most people posting on this site are using the term "accaptace" to indicate that the Dodgers season is over, that they are out of it. That is where the debate lies.

2005-08-15 10:13:27
150.   Monterey Chris
Sorry for the spelling...while I type, I am holding a baby who is not as interested in this topic as I am.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2005-08-15 10:17:33
151.   Mark
For all of you still in denial--

There are 45 games remaining. Assume that 78 wins will win the division. To get to 78 wins...

...the Padres need to go 20-25.
...the Dbacks need to go 22-21.
...and the Dodgers need to go 25-20.

2005-08-15 10:18:25
152.   Fearing Blue
Based on Baseball Prospectus offensive and defensive statistics, our optimal infield would be as follows. The format is Pos: Player: MLVr (Marginal Lineup Value Rate) + (RATE2 - 100)/100 = Run Comparison Value.

C: Dioner Navarro: .104 + -.160 = -.054
1B: Olmedo Saenz: .227 + -.170 = .057
2B: Jeff Kent: .269 + -.110 = .159
SS: Oscar Robles: .001 + .000 = .001
3B: Antonio Perez: .186 + -.080 = .106
Total: .269

But, since Saenz can't play everyday, the second best lineup is:

C: Dioner Navarro: .104 + -.160 = -.054
1B: Hee Seop Choi: .066 + -.050 = .016
2B: Jeff Kent: .269 + -.110 = .159
SS: Oscar Robles: .001 + .000 = .001
3B: Antonio Perez: .186 + -.080 = .106
Total: .228

The new Jim Tracy standard has the following values:

C: Dioner Navarro: .104 + -.160 = -.054
1B: Jason Phillips: -.108 + -.130 = -.238
2B: Jeff Kent: .269 + -.110 = .159
SS: Cesar Izturis: -.129 + .040 = -.089
3B: Oscar Robles: .001 + -.070 = -.069
Total: -.291

The often suggested Kent at 1B arrangement is as follows:

C: Dioner Navarro: .104 + -.160 = -.054
1B: Jeff Kent: .269 + -.130 = .139
2B: Antonio Perez: .186 + -.200 = -.013
SS: Cesar Izturis: -.129 + .040 = -.089
3B: Oscar Robles: .001 + -.070 = -.069
Total: -.086

Even though infield defensive statistics are rough measures, the overall lineup values fit pretty well with my subjective assessment. Thus, I would say that Jim Tracy's preferred lineup is costing the team somewhere between .519 (Hee Seop Choi) to .559 (Olmedo Saenz) runs / game.

2005-08-15 10:19:59
153.   Yakface
You know what it is that makes this season seem up grabs? Besides the 5 games back in a weak division, it's that the Dodgers got off to sucha hot start ( with drew in a slump ) that it seems that theres still hope, all the pieces we had at the beginning are here with the addition of Brad Penny, its sooo odd.
2005-08-15 10:26:33
154.   Jacob L
If you throw out the 12-2 start, the Dodgers have played the remainder of the season at 21 games under .500. That's not mediocre or inconsistent. That's four months of consistent, lousy baseball.

Whatever anybody else (SD, Ariz) doesn in the rest of August and September, the Dodgers have to be a different team then the one they've been in order to beat them. They have to fix the offense - doable, especially if Drew comes back and/or Tracy finally fills out a sensible lineup card. They also have to fix the bullpen - doubtful unless there's a K-Rod type contribution from a call-up.

At this point, the whole denial/acceptance has everything to do with the divsion and nothing to do with the Dodgers. The Dodgers haven't impersonated a contender since April, especially if you expect contenders to occasionally win 6 out of 7.

2005-08-15 10:31:34
155.   Jon Weisman
149 - This won't be the first time I try to change what I think are flawed terms of debate.

It would be foolhardy to think that the Dodger season is over, and foolhardy to think that they can win the division.

Meanwhile, every single time that someone goes from denial back to acceptance using the terms you describe, such as on Saturday, there is all this anger. Don't you get fatigued by it?

My way is better. Accept that the Dodgers are in a difficult situation, then hope for the best.

2005-08-15 10:33:17
156.   Fearing Blue
#152: Another thing I should point out is that .5 runs / game corresponds to approximately 8 wins over the course of a season. Thus, a .050 change in winning percentage which corresponds to an additional 2+ wins over the remainder of the season.
2005-08-15 10:36:57
157.   Kayaker7
148 Those teams you listed that have a lower chance of making the playoff than the Dodgers, but have a winning record, are respectively, 17, 17, 19.5, 8, 15, 19.5, 12 games out of first place. I'm sure if any one of them were 5 games back, they'd have a higher probability of making it than the Dodgers.
2005-08-15 10:40:19
158.   Bob Timmermann
148
I thought that people would assume that they were further out of first and that was why they had slim chances of making the playoffs.

It was just an example of how the poor division keeps the Dodgers slim playoff hopes flickering.

2005-08-15 10:40:37
159.   Steve
152 -- That needs to be posted somewhere more prominent than at the end of this thread.
2005-08-15 10:41:02
160.   Yakface
155- I concur.
2005-08-15 10:43:28
161.   Eric Enders
The saddest part of 148 is the realization that we have a worse record than Milwaukee and Detroit.
2005-08-15 10:43:54
162.   Bob Timmermann
159

Sorry, no A's fans allowed.

2005-08-15 10:46:31
163.   Jon Weisman
161 - It's the Reds who hit me the hardest.

156 - What's the difference between Navarro and Phillips at catcher?

2005-08-15 10:47:18
164.   Bob Timmermann
The Reds are just one game better than the Dodgers.
The Dodgers were also swept by a team on pace to lose 106 games.
2005-08-15 11:00:16
165.   Sushirabbit
97.
tell all that to the 88 Dodgers.
2005-08-15 11:10:28
166.   Monterey Chris
Jon--

I agree with you. I just think you are defining your terms differently than most on this site are. I understand that you are trying to change the terms of the debate...I'm not sure if you will succeed.

2005-08-15 11:19:01
167.   Jacob L
164 - Bob, the Royals series was definitely when I bought my "2005 Acceptance" t-shirt.
2005-08-15 11:27:15
168.   Jon Weisman
166 - I'm gonna have to be more optimistic, since without any belief in my ability to affect the debate, my interest in this site goes way, way down. :)
2005-08-15 13:12:42
169.   Fearing Blue
#163: Here is the direct comparison of MLVr + RATE2.

C: Dioner Navarro: .104 + -.170 = -.066
C: Jason Phillips: -.108 + -.110 = -.218
Difference = .152 runs / game

All caveats about small sample size obviously apply to Dioner Navarro. Additionally, the MLVr hasn't been updated to include last night's 0 for 3 game, which will affect it significantly. Nonetheless, his current .271/.386/.333 batting line is probably pretty close to what we should have expected and the OBP Navarro provides is much more valuable than the slugging Phillips provides.

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.