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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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Maligned Dodger Offense Outperforming Dodger Pitchers?
2005-09-07 08:49
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Major league teams average about 4.7 runs per game. So without taking park effects into account, if you hold an opponent below five runs or score five, you should expect to win.

With the aid of Baseball Prospectus, let's see how the Dodgers have fared in 2005:

Holding Opponents Below Five Runs

  • 8 shutout victories, tied for 14th in baseball
  • 16 games holding opponents to one run or less, tied for 23rd in baseball
  • 26 games holding opponents to two runs or less, 27th in baseball
  • 46 games holding opponents to three runs or less, 26th in baseball
  • 66 games holding opponents to four runs or less, tied for 24th in baseball

    The only teams to finish even with or behind the Dodgers in holding opponents to four runs or less were Boston, Cincinnati, Colorado, Kansas City, Tampa Bay and Texas. According to Baseball-Reference.com, none of those teams play in parks that suppressed runs more than Dodger Stadium except for possibly the Reds, whose new stadium's park effects have been inconsistent.

    But note this:

  • When allowing exactly three or four runs, the Dodgers are 24-16 (.600), tied for 12th in baseball.

    This is just a start, but the above indicates that for all the problems of the Dodger offense, all the questions about lineups, when the pitching did its job, the Dodger offense backed it up.

    (Note: I have run out of time to calculate where the Dodgers rank in winning percentage in games where they allow four runs or less. Their rank would certainly drop, but that might not be relevant, mainly because the teams that have allowed fewer runs more often have racked up victories in those situations.)

    As for the offense ...

    Scoring Five Runs or More

  • 58 times, 21st in baseball
  • When scoring exactly five runs, the Dodgers are 5-8 (.385), 28th in baseball
  • When scoring five or six runs, the Dodgers are 18-12 (.600), 27th in baseball

    When the offense has done its job, the pitching has let it down. Only when the offense went well above and beyond six runs in a game could the team be assured of victory. (The Dodgers are 28-0 when scoring at least seven runs.)

    By these indications, the victories that the Dodgers did manage to get in 2005 had more to do with their offense than their pitching. Of course, there's room for improvement in both areas, and based on what talent is going to be available in the offseason, it may in fact be easier for the Dodgers to outslug opponents in 2006 than outpitch them. But as far as looking back at 2005, the bigger problems might still have been with the pitching.

  • Comments (263)
    Show/Hide Comments 1-50
    2005-09-07 10:12:13
    1.   everett
    i think this really points to 2004 being really lucky. my gut says that last year more often than not, when our offense sucked, pitching picked us up. And when our pitching sucked, our offense was doing a bit better.

    i'm sure some pundits will say that's just the marking of a good "team" ... I can't wait till next year...

    2005-09-07 10:12:23
    2.   Eric Enders
    The Dodgers today nominated Milton Bradley for the Roberto Clemente Award. Seriously.

    The award is "given annually to a player who demonstrates the values Clemente displayed in his commitment to community and understanding the value of helping others."

    2005-09-07 10:16:39
    3.   Brendan
    I have two FREE tickets to tonight's Dodger game(I can't make it)

    They can be e-mailed to you(no pickup)

    If anyone is interested send me an e-mail to brendang6@adelphia.net

    Tickets are Field Level 44 Row Z.

    2005-09-07 10:17:37
    4.   Eric Enders
    One very interesting stat is that, despite the Dodgers' alleged closer problems this year, they are 50-1 when leading after eight innings -- better than last year when Gagne was the closer.
    2005-09-07 10:25:50
    5.   Icaros
    Interesting stuff, what's strange (and something a lot of people would point to as an indicator of a failing offense) is that the Dodgers' two best pitchers, Brad Penny (3.82 ERA) and Derek Lowe (3.77 ERA) both have losing records of 6-9 and 9-13, respectively.

    Then Jeff Weaver comes along with an ERA of 4.40 and has a winning record of 13-9. Let's not forget Ishii's 13-8, 4.71 in 2004.

    Why do I still hear announcers point to win-loss records as the indicator of a pitcher's success? Why do we even bother keeping wins as a statistic?

    2005-09-07 10:27:17
    6.   Steve
    Lowe's ERA is fake though.
    2005-09-07 10:32:28
    7.   Icaros
    I forgot, Steve. How many points are added to Lowe's ERA by the media police in punishment for this season's infidelity?
    2005-09-07 10:34:48
    8.   Yakface
    4- Ummm... I doubt that.
    2005-09-07 10:35:18
    9.   Steve
    I was talking more about his pitching infidelity of giving up "unearned" runs.
    2005-09-07 10:38:53
    10.   Eric Enders
    8 - Doubt it all you want. It is a fact.
    2005-09-07 10:39:23
    11.   Steve
    8 -- Like he didn't look it up, or something?
    2005-09-07 10:41:30
    12.   Icaros
    9 His WHIP is almost exactly the same as Penny's, though (1.26 to 1.28)

    Lowe's biggest weakness has been HRs (26 to 15).

    2005-09-07 10:41:49
    13.   Yakface
    A fact like Santa Clause or a fact like the easter bunny?
    2005-09-07 10:42:28
    14.   Bob Timmermann
    The only blemish is the June 18 game at Chicago when Brazoban gave up four in the bottom of the 9th to lose to the White Sox, 5-3.

    Brazoban did cough up a lead in Philadelphia in the last at bat, but that was in the 10th inning.

    2005-09-07 10:44:07
    15.   Yakface
    14-he said leading after the 8th and from the last time I checked anything <=9 is after 8 unless I missed something?
    2005-09-07 10:44:46
    16.   Icaros
    You are aware that Santa Clause is a Tim Allen movie, not to be confused with Santa Claus, right?
    2005-09-07 10:46:39
    17.   Yakface
    16-What do you want me to say? I used the wrong claws?
    2005-09-07 10:46:52
    18.   regfairfield
    15 - That doesn't mean that the Dodgers were leading after the 8th, they could have taken the lead in the 9th or the 10th.

    It has basically been middle relief that's killed us. I think Sanchez went through some massive streak of blowing leads at one point.

    2005-09-07 10:48:36
    19.   Eric Enders
    11- I did look up this year's number, but last year's is impossible to find. I do know Gagne had two blown saves.

    Hmm... looking those two games up, they won one and lost the other. So actually, in both 2004 and 2005 it appears we've had only one loss when leading after 8, unless somehow we lost another such game last year without Gagne getting a blown save.

    2005-09-07 10:48:38
    20.   Icaros
    17 Fair enough. I just wanted to drop Tim Allen's name on DT.
    2005-09-07 10:49:29
    21.   Bob Timmermann
    they are 50-1 when leading after eight innings

    I don't understand how this can be interpreted any differently.

    The Dodgers have been ahead after the end of 8 innings 51 times. They have won 50 of those games.

    That means there have been 87 games when the Dodgers were either tied or trailing at the end of eight innings.

    The Dodgers record then is 12-75 in those games.

    2005-09-07 10:52:13
    22.   Xeifrank
    5. Yes, wins is not a very meaningful stat for a pitcher. The other day I heard the Angel pre game announcer harping about Scot Shields and how he had a bad record. It was something like 7-10 at the time. A knowledgeable caller pointed out that his ERA was something like 2.65 (not sure exactly). Wins/Losses are beyond a pitchers control in the sense that you can pitch well and get a loss and pitch poorly and get a win. With a few tweeks to the quality start stat it would be a much better indicator for starting pitchers.

    Not sure about all this stuff about runs scored per games and records when certain number of runs are scored. I'd be more interested to see where we rank in pythag. wins predicted.
    vr, Xei

    2005-09-07 10:53:14
    23.   Yakface
    doubt it.
    2005-09-07 10:53:55
    24.   bigcpa
    2004 Lg Rank Runs/GM, ERA
    Dodgers 9th, 4th
    Angels 7th, 4th

    2005 Lg Rank Runs/GM, ERA
    Dodgers 11th, 13th
    Angels 9th, 4th

    The Dodger offense is down 9%, the Angel offense is down 11%. Dodger pitching is 14% worse, Angel pitching is 13% better (yet still ranked 4th in AL). And we were the ones throwing money at starting pitchers. So pitching seems to explain most of the 15 wins that separate the two teams.

    Last year's Dodger offense of 4.7 runs/gm would be good enough for 4th in the watered down NL this year.

    2005-09-07 10:54:10
    25.   Bob Timmermann
    Wins and losses are kept for pitchers mainly because "They've always done it that way."

    They give out wins and losses to goalies in hockey too and it's not very often when a goalie is solely responsible for his team losing or winning.

    2005-09-07 10:54:34
    26.   Jon Weisman
    27 - "I'd be more interested to see where we rank in pythag. wins predicted."

    That's fine - just an entirely different topic. It doesn't distinguish between the offense and pitching, which is what I wanted to compare today.

    2005-09-07 10:57:04
    27.   bigcpa
    Jon- now you're referring to posts that haven't even happened!
    2005-09-07 10:57:48
    28.   Eric Enders
    Wins are a useful statistic when looking at career records, just not single-season records. All the bad luck/small sample size stuff evens out over a pitcher's entire career. Then, by comparing his career W-L percentage to that of his team, you'll have a fairly good indicator of how good a pitcher he is/was.
    2005-09-07 11:00:07
    29.   Jon Weisman
    The point Eric's making is getting lost in minutae. The Dodgers have been near-perfect with an eighth-inning lead in 2005, busting the myth that he's the only one that can close games.

    Where Gagne's loss has been critical is that it has weakend the overall bullpen depth - it hasn't mattered in the ninth inning at all.

    Frankly, I still don't know how anyone could argue that pitching with a lead in the ninth inning is the job solely for the best reliever, that there is some magic to it.

    2005-09-07 11:00:14
    30.   blue22
    Thoughts on the roster next year. I like the bullpen, need another arm in the rotation, and a bat to replace Bradley:

    C - Navarro
    1B - Choi
    2B - Kent
    SS - Robles
    3B - APerez
    RF - Cruz
    CF - Drew
    LF - New acquisition (Giles, Matsui, Dunn, Lawton)

    Bench - Werth, Ledee, Phillips, 2 more bench guys

    SP - Penny, Lowe, OPerez, Houlton, New acquisition

    Bullpen - Gagne, Braz, Schmoll, Broxton, Wunsch, Dessens, Sanchez

    IMO, Izturis (possibly trade bait though his value is low right now), Valentin, Edwards, Repko, Grabs, Saenz (off to an AL team for regular playing time), Weaver (declines arby), and Bradley (bye bye) will not be back on the ML squad.

    2005-09-07 11:02:27
    31.   Jon Weisman
    24 - Think where the Dodgers would be in ERA without Penny.
    2005-09-07 11:02:53
    32.   jasonungar05
    Frankly, I still don't know how anyone could argue that pitching with a lead in the ninth inning is the job solely for the best reliever, that there is some magic to it.

    yeah exactly, 50-1 after 8 and our "closer" was demoted.

    2005-09-07 11:03:18
    33.   Kayaker7
    28 I disagree. There have been some good pitchers on bad teams, whose career wins never truly justified the great careers they have had. I'm struggling to come up with names at the moment, but I distictly remember Bill James discussing this issue in his Historical Abstract.
    2005-09-07 11:03:23
    34.   Jon Weisman
    (29) there's a pronoun I misused that would make it seem as if Eric Enders has been the great Dodger closer. Which, some would say, is an easy mistake to make on sight.
    2005-09-07 11:06:28
    35.   Kayaker7
    29 "Frankly, I still don't know how anyone could argue that pitching with a lead in the ninth inning is the job solely for the best reliever, that there is some magic to it."

    I'm sure Tracy could do it. Didn't he say that in the ninth inning, "stuff gets people out?" There must be something magical about the ninth inning in which ordinary pitching effort no longer works. ;-)

    2005-09-07 11:07:29
    36.   Xeifrank
    28. Yeah, that's a good point but when is the last time you've ever heard someone compare a pitchers career or seasonal win/loss record to that of his teams? I agree with you, but it gets a bit too hairy for even the most seasoned fan. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 11:07:45
    37.   Eric Enders
    30 - Given the extraordinary amount of high-end starting pitching in our farm system, I would be shocked if DePo signed another starting pitcher this off-season. First of all, there aren't many good ones available. Second, to get one of these guys, you'd have to give them a long multi-year deal and thus block Jackson/ Billingsley/ Miller/ Hochevar/ Elbert/ Orenduff/ whoever from joining the starting rotation in the next few years. You'd have four starting pitchers signed to multi-year deals, which means only one of the above prospects could crack the rotation in the next three years.

    The only way I see us signing a quality free agent starter is if Weaver declines arbitration AND Perez is traded. Otherwise, it simply makes no sense. If we're going to sign two free agents, better for it be two hitters than a hitter and a pitcher.

    2005-09-07 11:08:30
    38.   Eric Enders
    But I am the only one who can close games!
    2005-09-07 11:09:36
    39.   Kayaker7
    38 I've closed bars. :)
    2005-09-07 11:09:36
    40.   Xeifrank
    FYI
    Players / DIPS / QS%
    Weaver / 4.58 / 62%
    Lowe / 4.27 / 63%
    Penny / 3.73% / 58%
    Houlton / 4.94 / 47%
    ...................
    Clemens / 2.82 / 86%
    Carpenter / 2.98 / 93%

    Penny, Lowe and hope for snow?
    vr, Xei

    2005-09-07 11:11:08
    41.   Eric Enders
    "I disagree. There have been some good pitchers on bad teams, whose career wins never truly justified the great careers they have had."
    ----------

    While that's true, it doesn't in any way negate the point I was making. In fact, it enhances it. By comparing their W-L record to that of their team, you can determine exactly how good those good pitchers on bad teams were.

    2005-09-07 11:13:32
    42.   Bob Timmermann
    According to research done by Dave Smith at Retrosheet, several teams have had perfect records when leading after 8. I believe the 1954 Indians were best at something like 97-0.

    The 1998 Yankees were 102-1 when leading after 8.

    And the most losses any team had when leading after 8 innings was 11 by the 1978 Mets.

    How many wins when trailing after 8 have the Dodgers had this year? The Dodgers did it three times in April (at Arizona, at Milwaukee and in the home opener against the Giants). They did it again on July 16 at home against the Giants (the Jason Phillips check swing game).

    Four is a lot of late wins for a bad team.

    2005-09-07 11:13:50
    43.   Kayaker7
    41 Sorry, should have read the entire post. Missed the part about comparing to teammates.
    2005-09-07 11:15:37
    44.   Xeifrank
    37. Exactly! I'd say spend the most $ on an outfielder like Giles or Matsui, then make the next priority (money spending wise) on either another OFer (if MB is gone) or another one year stop gap at 3B (if APerez isn't going to ever play there). It's hard to get too excited about next year, but given the division we play in I think we are still in as good of shape as any of the other four teams. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 11:17:22
    45.   Eric Enders
    "28. Yeah, that's a good point but when is the last time you've ever heard someone compare a pitchers career or seasonal win/loss record to that of his teams?"
    -----

    Bill James has been doing this for 25 years. He even has a name for the stat: WAT (wins above team). This is the number of career wins over what an average pitcher on the same teams would have gotten.

    Various career WAT totals:

    Sandy Koufax: 28
    Don Drysdale: 5
    Lefty Grove: 53
    Whitey Ford: 35
    Walter Johnson: 96
    Christy Mathewson: 60
    Catfish Hunter: 16

    2005-09-07 11:19:15
    46.   Kayaker7
    45 WAT?! Can't hear you.

    Sorry, couldn't resist. ;)

    2005-09-07 11:23:50
    47.   bigcpa
    Save conversion rate for all pitchers since 1995:
    3-run lead: 91%
    2-run lead: 73%
    1-run lead: 49%

    There are plenty of blown saves in there for non-closers in middle innings. But at least this shows that saves are about as easy to convert as free throws. And 3-run leads are like PAT's.

    2005-09-07 11:29:49
    48.   Bob Timmermann
    The save conversion rate for all pitchers is going to be low for a 1-run lead if you look over all the innings. Obviously a 4-3 lead in the 6th is not as safe as a 4-3 lead in the 9th since the other team has so many more chances available to score.
    2005-09-07 11:32:54
    49.   Eric Enders
    47 - I'll be damned if I can find it right now, but somebody has actually figured out what the accurate save conversion rate for all closers is. (That is, minus the so-called "blown saves" by middle relievers.)

    IIRC, it's about 90 percent overall.

    2005-09-07 11:34:50
    50.   Xeifrank
    48. True. I guess a good analogy for your example would be Shaq's free throws.
    vr, Xei
    Show/Hide Comments 51-100
    2005-09-07 11:35:42
    51.   blue22
    37 - I don't think a new starter will come via FA. Either Depo makes a trade, we bring someone up, or we make a lesser FA signing as a stop gap.

    I guess I was trying to say that in spite of the horrendous year we are going through, the pieces seem to be in place for next year. Very little needs to be done despite possibly losing 90 games this year.

    2005-09-07 11:38:23
    52.   Xeifrank
    45. Bill James has thought of almost everything hasn't he. He has turned Wins, a poor stat into WAT, a more respectable one but still with flaw since Wins itself is flawed. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 11:40:23
    53.   Bob Timmermann
    50

    I don't think that analogy makes much sense at all actually. If Shaquille O'Neal misses a free throw in the first quarter, his team doesn't get a point. Same thing that would happen in the fourth quarter.

    If Middle Reliever A preserves a 4-3 lead in the sixth, that's great. But Middle Reliever B could blow it in the 7th. Your increasing your chances of someone blowing the save.

    If you've got the lead after 8 and put in Stud Closer C, your team will probably win. Although, it might be just as likely to win if you have Mopup Guy D pitching.

    2005-09-07 11:41:37
    54.   jasonungar05
    Nolan Ryan won 32 games more than he lost.

    Meanwhile Tom Glavine has won 91 more games than he has lost.

    2005-09-07 11:42:25
    55.   Eric Enders
    "If Shaquille O'Neal misses a free throw in the first quarter"
    ---

    If?

    2005-09-07 11:44:17
    56.   Eric Enders
    54 - I assume the point of your post is that wins is a flawed stat. However, Tom Glavine has been a much, much better pitcher than Nolan Ryan over the course of their careers. Ryan's career simply lasted longer.
    2005-09-07 11:45:37
    57.   MrTim
    About the Dodgers offense vs. the pitching...if you look at marginal runs for the Dodgers this year, even without adjusting for the park factor, the Dodgers offense has scored 278.6 marginal runs, whereas the Dodgers piching and defense has saved 270.2 runs. Granted, this includes the Dodgers defense in the mix in addition to the pitching, but considering that when we adjust for the park factor marginal runs scored will increase and those saved will decrease, it seems like the offense is still better than the pitching + defense.
    2005-09-07 11:46:24
    58.   Xeifrank
    53. I was talking percentage wise/success rate, following the examples in the previous posts.
    vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 11:47:08
    59.   Steve
    The sun rose in the east this morning. Anyone care to deny it?
    2005-09-07 11:50:45
    60.   sanchez101
    How much of the pitching problems are due to the rotation as opposed to the bullpen? While the rotation has been nothing spectacular, lowe and penny to date have better than average era's, while weaver is about leage average and perez is a little below; of course erikson and houlton have been considerably worse than average. But compared to the bullpen where dessens and sanchez have been good, while everyone else stinks badly. Does anyone have the rotation and bullpen era's?

    The other factor to think about when comparing last years pitching versus this years (and i think this gets to what everett is talking about up top) is that the defense has been worse. Last year the dodgers had the best defense in baseball with a defensive efficiency of .715, this year theyve dropped to 20th in the majors to .693. That means (i think) that 2.3% more balls in play become hits.

    Whats interesting is that the dodgers this year are not much worse than last year (6.6 k/9 in 2004 to 6.4 k/9 in 2005) in strikouts, especially considering ganges absence. The k to walk ration has actually increased from 2.05 (8th in the league) to 2.20 (4th in the league) from 2004 to 2005. They have given up more hits per nine innings this year 9.33 h/9 from 8.58 h/9, but the hr rate is about the same. There are more hits given up, which seems to me to because of luck and worse defense, but to blame the pitchers for this seems inaccurate given that the three outcomes they control the most (walks strikouts and homeruns) arent significantly different.

    I wonder how the lessened foul ground and better hitting backdrop have affected these things.

    does anyone have the babip for the team this year or last?

    2005-09-07 11:52:20
    61.   Bob Timmermann
    I live at the Scott-Admunsen Research station at the South Pole, so I disagree with Steve's contention that the sun rose in the east today.
    2005-09-07 11:52:46
    62.   Sam DC
    Well, I'm pretty surprised to have just read 50 plus comments deconstructing what it means to "lead" or come "after" something, and nothing re Eric's initial mention of the Dodgers' nomination of Milton Bradley for the Clemente award. I don't know what to say about, other than it's surprising.
    2005-09-07 11:54:11
    63.   blue22
    62 - Or that the nomination occurred in April.
    2005-09-07 11:54:11
    64.   Icaros
    59 I doubt it.
    2005-09-07 11:55:14
    65.   Steve
    Eric is dyslexic. The Dodgers are really 1-50 when leading after eight innings.
    2005-09-07 11:56:01
    66.   Yakface
    56-Doubt it.
    2005-09-07 11:57:57
    67.   Icaros
    62 We're over Milton Bradley. He's still black, so everything must be okay.
    2005-09-07 12:01:38
    68.   Steve
    The Dodgers aren't going to win the Clemente Award this year either? This really has been a wasted year.
    2005-09-07 12:05:01
    69.   Sam DC
    From this article, it also appears that the Dodger Players voted Bradley the team nominee for the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award. (Gentleman, start your jokes about he has just the personality . . . .)

    No clue when the vote was taken.

    http://tinyurl.com/8ox6w

    2005-09-07 12:05:46
    70.   Yakface
    I know I'm being really off topic here but I feel this must be asked. Given the amount of injuries this year and what not, what do you think the line up will look like on next years MLB MVP 2006?
    2005-09-07 12:17:46
    71.   Penarol1916
    What is MLB MVP 2006 and why should I care how injuries affect its line-up?
    2005-09-07 12:19:37
    72.   Yakface
    71-Its a real time season simulation tool.
    2005-09-07 12:21:24
    73.   Bob Timmermann
    71
    I believe it's a video game.
    2005-09-07 12:21:49
    74.   regfairfield
    72 - Yeah, in the sense that the 12 guys in the park once a month are an accurate depiction of the Civil War
    2005-09-07 12:22:48
    75.   Yakface
    71-And I dont know why you would care but It's going to be interesting to see who the developers choose to put in the starting LineUp considering there has'nt been a consistent starting line up, not really that important but fun, you do remember fun right?
    2005-09-07 12:24:01
    76.   regfairfield
    Don't they lock the rosters around Janurary, not the end of this season?
    2005-09-07 12:24:04
    77.   Steve
    I don't believe it exists.
    2005-09-07 12:29:34
    78.   Bob Timmermann
    I never thought we'd be having an existential crisis here.
    2005-09-07 12:33:21
    79.   Yakface
    78-I dont believe we are.
    2005-09-07 12:34:27
    80.   Kilgore Trout
    2, While it is ironic that Bradley was nominated, I'm not so sure it was inappropriate.

    Neither his problems with Jeff Kent nor the reports of possible domestic violence should negate what he has done for the community. Even if he is not the perfect role model, he seems to have contributed a tremendous amount off the field.

    2005-09-07 12:36:10
    81.   Jon Weisman
    To lighten things up ... here's a game.

    http://www.joeykatzen.com/alpha/ver4/

    2005-09-07 12:39:36
    82.   Brendan
    tickets have been claimed. thanks
    2005-09-07 12:41:02
    83.   ddger
    Thanks for looking up all that info today, Jon.

    The dodgers record when they score 4 or more is 54-20.

    Does this mean that we should put out the lineup that generates more offense than relying too much on defense and pitching?

    2005-09-07 12:41:19
    84.   Steve
    Is it schizoid paranoia or just existential blues?
    2005-09-07 12:44:20
    85.   Jon Weisman
    The A's just walked Adrian Beltre in the first inning of their game today.
    2005-09-07 12:45:06
    86.   Jon Weisman
    The following batter, one G. Dobbs, delivered an RBI single.
    2005-09-07 12:46:52
    87.   Eric Enders
    81 - I only got 7 of those right. Which I guess makes sense, given my disdain for all things commercial.

    The ones I got right were a car company, a candy bar, a TV network, and four having to do with electronics/film/video.

    2005-09-07 12:48:06
    88.   Bob Timmermann
    81-
    I got 8 of them instantly.
    2005-09-07 12:55:03
    89.   Bob Timmermann
    And I petered out after 10.
    C G J N S T V X Y Z
    2005-09-07 12:58:09
    90.   Kayaker7
    I only got 3. What does that say about me. :-(
    2005-09-07 12:59:22
    91.   blue22
    11 on the first try. (I swear that's Dr. Pepper though...)
    2005-09-07 12:59:27
    92.   Kayaker7
    Hey, I just got one more. So, I got j,n,q,z.
    2005-09-07 13:01:34
    93.   blue22
    C G J M Q R S T V X Z
    2005-09-07 13:02:34
    94.   Bob Timmermann
    I swear it's Dr Pepper also and I've tried different spellings but it doesn't come out right.

    The company style for the product is "Dr Pepper" with no period.

    Helps if you've worked with people looking for trademarks.

    I'm not paying the guy $4 a hint though!

    2005-09-07 13:04:15
    95.   Eric Enders
    The previous versions are much easier. I more than doubled my score on them, getting 14 right on #3 and 15 right on #2.

    These were all over the map. Two TV networks, a bookstore, an airline, a hardware store, two car manufacturers, a grocery store, four fast food restaurants, a medication, two types of candy, a petroleum company, a department store, a hotel, two food manufacturers, a newspaper, a soft drink, a deodorizing spray, two movie companies, two computer companies, and four having to do with electronics.

    I am firmly convinced that the ones you get right tell you something about your personality. This would indicate that I mess around a lot with computers and electronics (true) and eat too much fast food (false -- we don't even have any fast food restaurants here).

    2005-09-07 13:10:18
    96.   Kayaker7
    The tough thing is that they are not necessarily the first letter.
    2005-09-07 13:11:31
    97.   DXMachina
    94 It's not Dr. Pepper. I got it.

    BDHJLNPSTUVZ so far. I'm doing real well on the right column.

    2005-09-07 13:12:00
    98.   Eric Enders
    Surprised nobody has gotten B yet. I actually thought that was the easiest one. And I patronize this company, well, never. Maybe once a year in late March.
    2005-09-07 13:12:20
    99.   Eric Stephen
    14 so far...

    B C G J M N O Q R S T V Y Z

    I need to get out more.

    2005-09-07 13:14:08
    100.   Im So Blue
    I got B H J N T U V W Y Z
    My 14-yr old daughter added: C G L P Q R

    (B was thanks to the hint from Eric in #87)

    Show/Hide Comments 101-150
    2005-09-07 13:15:04
    101.   Eric Enders
    My second guess for D was Doritos. Also wrong.

    O is driving me nuts. I'm extremely familiar with the lettering but can't place it.

    2005-09-07 13:17:15
    102.   Eric Stephen
    H is very familiar, but is also driving me crazy.
    2005-09-07 13:18:08
    103.   Im So Blue
    I've discovered a way to cheat, but I haven't used it and I'm not telling. :)
    2005-09-07 13:18:51
    104.   DXMachina
    I just got O. It was driving me crazy, too.
    2005-09-07 13:19:27
    105.   Eric Enders
    Collectively so far, we've gotten 21 of 26. Still need

    A E F I K

    2005-09-07 13:20:16
    106.   Eric L
    86

    Just one of those interesting tidbits -

    Greg Dobbs and Bobby Kielty attended the same high school. I played against those guys growing up.

    2005-09-07 13:22:00
    107.   Eric Stephen
    Got E
    2005-09-07 13:23:34
    108.   blue22
    103 - Hey, at $4 a hint, that's quite a lucrative hack you've discovered.
    2005-09-07 13:23:39
    109.   DXMachina
    Hah! I got L by accident. I entered a similar name, and the game assumed I'd misspelled it, so it put in the right answer. I wasn't even close.
    2005-09-07 13:24:41
    110.   Bob Timmermann
    98

    What in particular would you be needing to use "Company B" for in late March? I know what it stands for.

    2005-09-07 13:24:54
    111.   ElysianPark62
    #37--I foresee Lowe and Odalis Perez being dangled in the off-season, with only one of them being moved. He would have to be replaced by a top FA pitcher (unlikely) or a more reasonable veteran FA (more likely) or another pitcher being shipped to the Dodgers, in the same trade or in another one.

    Perez is probably less tradeable, given his balky shoulder. Lowe would still probably be attractive to some AL teams, including the Tigers and Yankees. But who the heck could NY send of some value? Maybe a three-way trade will occur. I think Lowe will be shopped mostly due to his off-the-field escapades, not his stats. Reportedly the team is very upset about Lowe.

    2005-09-07 13:26:20
    112.   Bob Timmermann
    5-0 Seattle now.

    Sorry Steve.

    2005-09-07 13:28:20
    113.   blue22
    111 - If that's the case, then both pitchers would likely need to either go with cash, or take back an equally unappealing contract in return. This basically would nullify any benefit we get from Dreifort and Green's contracts coming off.

    Between Lowe and Perez, I like Lowe's chances of being more productive and healthy over the life of the contract. But if the Dodgers are into this "character" business, then he could be moved.

    2005-09-07 13:32:30
    114.   Kayaker7
    Would we be sued if we revealed the answers?
    2005-09-07 13:34:07
    115.   Eric Enders
    110 - The last couple of years it's actually been late February.

    Think Grouch, Meyer, Robles.

    2005-09-07 13:34:36
    116.   Bob Timmermann
    114

    The author has no legal right to the truth. You just can't copy the game and market it as your own because of copyright law (which would be hard to prove) and he does have a trademark on the name of the game.

    2005-09-07 13:35:22
    117.   ElysianPark62
    #111--Fifth spot will go to either Jackson (if not traded--I think he will be), Houlton, or Billingsley (a long shot but Vegas does nothing for young guys' confidence). He might just skip it.
    2005-09-07 13:35:23
    118.   Bob Timmermann
    115

    That's what I thought. The time threw me.

    Although I have a hard time picturing watching that. I imagine you just watch it for the opening.

    2005-09-07 13:36:05
    119.   Steelyeri
    The O is driving me crazy as well. I thought it was Dannon. I got C,S,V,X,andZ.
    2005-09-07 13:36:47
    120.   Eric Enders
    114 - If anyone is subjecting themselves to a lawsuit, it's the author of the game, for trademark reasons.
    2005-09-07 13:36:53
    121.   Bob Timmermann
    The 0 isn't bothering me nearly as much as Q and D.
    2005-09-07 13:36:56
    122.   Steve
    I don't know how many Seattle will score, but the A's will score 2 or less.
    2005-09-07 13:37:36
    123.   ElysianPark62
    #113--I could see them sending money as more likely than taking on a bad contract.

    Texas might be another taker for Lowe or Perez.

    2005-09-07 13:38:08
    124.   blue22
    121 - Reverse those two letters at the end of your sentence, and that will lead you to Q.
    2005-09-07 13:38:58
    125.   DXMachina
    Got F! Q, too.
    2005-09-07 13:39:23
    126.   Kayaker7
    Ha ha. I cheated and got all the answers. I charge $3.99 for cryptic hints. :-D
    2005-09-07 13:39:48
    127.   blue22
    123 - I've always liked the OP +$10M for Brad Wilkerson (and see if there are any other pitchers that have given Frank the evil eye recently that they'd like to dump - maybe we should start a rumor that John Patterson thinks Frank Robinson is a senile old fool).
    2005-09-07 13:40:08
    128.   Kayaker7
    It is funny that I got q very quickly, though I ended up with a paltry four.
    2005-09-07 13:42:10
    129.   Steelyeri
    The D is bugging me too because i've seen it before. But the O seems so familiar.
    2005-09-07 13:42:32
    130.   Eric Enders
    126

    I have all the answers too, so I'll undercut you. 2 bucks a pop. I even take Paypal!

    2005-09-07 13:43:10
    131.   Kayaker7
    129 D-hint. Do you brown bag?
    2005-09-07 13:43:33
    132.   Eric Enders
    Since everybody seems stumped by D, I'll offer a hint. It's the last letter in the company's name.
    2005-09-07 13:43:44
    133.   Clive Clements
    I still can't figure out D (also thought it was Dr. Pepper). R's bugging me too - it looks really familiar, but I can't place it.
    2005-09-07 13:44:11
    134.   Kayaker7
    130 LOL. I take paypal too. I'll undercut you by taking Jason Phillips and a pack of smokes for all the answers.
    2005-09-07 13:44:21
    135.   ddger
    anyone get E,J,W?
    2005-09-07 13:45:15
    136.   Eric Enders
    I got J and W. Somebody else up there got E... I had to cheat and look it up.
    2005-09-07 13:49:00
    137.   Eric Enders
    118-
    I actually sit through the whole thing, believe it or not. Although now it's nice to be able to do the entire thing in an hour thanks to Tivo.

    Quincy Jones and Debbie Allen are not very high on my list of favorite people.

    2005-09-07 13:49:55
    138.   Kayaker7
    Okay, hints. I take no pride in this, since I cheated to get the answers, but this game is no fun when you hit a block:

    d: end of a word you see often if you pack your own lunch

    e: You might see it before you propose.

    j: You might also see this if you brown bag.

    w: A friend in college who pulled an all-nighter with you.

    2005-09-07 13:50:38
    139.   Bob Timmermann
    I can now die happy as I found out the answers.
    2005-09-07 13:52:23
    140.   Kayaker7
    139 Did you cheat, or did you get them? Even with the hints, if you got them yourself, that is very impressive.
    2005-09-07 13:52:32
    141.   blue22
    funny how everyone "brown bags" with 'D'. I think of it as more "Trash Day".
    2005-09-07 13:53:51
    142.   Kayaker7
    141 For some of us, they're one in the same. ;-)
    2005-09-07 13:56:19
    143.   Steelyeri
    Yes. Trash day is a much more helpful hint.
    2005-09-07 13:56:57
    144.   Steve
    How is the N retail?
    2005-09-07 13:57:37
    145.   Eric Enders
    "they're one in the same."
    -----

    I sense another "you've got another think coming" thread coming.

    2005-09-07 13:58:20
    146.   ddger
    I'm down to F,N,X. Any clues?
    2005-09-07 14:00:03
    147.   Eric Enders
    Answer to 144. Don't click unless you already know what N is.

    http://tinyurl.com/aaf3x

    2005-09-07 14:00:34
    148.   blue22
    146 - 'X' - See the Seinfeld episode where George and Jerry go to buy a car?
    2005-09-07 14:00:50
    149.   Steve
    Retail...indeed.
    2005-09-07 14:02:32
    150.   DXMachina
    I'm down to F,N,X. Any clues?

    F - What Kent occasionally does to Bradley

    N - Bill Lee

    X - It's not named after anybody

    Show/Hide Comments 151-200
    2005-09-07 14:07:07
    151.   ddger
    Got it, thanks everyone. Reading the clues is more entertaining than actually getting the answers.
    2005-09-07 14:07:58
    152.   blue22
    Steve - as the resident A's fan, do you have any insight on the topic of today's Catfish Stew?
    2005-09-07 14:08:15
    153.   DXMachina
    Mike Morse of the Mariners was just suspended for a positive drug test.
    2005-09-07 14:09:09
    154.   ddger
    Now back to baseball. Anyone think we can sweep the Padres this weekend? Even if we win 2 out of 3 it will not be enough since we only gain 1 game.
    2005-09-07 14:12:43
    155.   ddger
    Our record when we score 3 or less runs is 7-56. When we score 3 runs it's still 2-16.

    Shouldn't Tracy put in our best offensive players since our record is pretty horrible when we score only few runs.

    2005-09-07 14:16:57
    156.   regfairfield
    155 If he thinks that sitting numbers 2-5 on the team in OPS is a good idea, he's not going to change his mind now.
    2005-09-07 14:17:50
    157.   ElysianPark62
    #127--I don't know what happened to my reply, so I'll try again. I would also be up for getting Wilkerson. I don't think sending $10 million would be necessary, probably a smaller amount, since Perez nearly signed with the Nats over the winter. They likely wouldn't need too much convincing.

    What do people think about signing Jacque Jones? He doesn't have the career OBP that DePodesta likes. I would like to sign Matsui, but I just don't see him leaving the Yankees.

    2005-09-07 14:23:10
    158.   regfairfield
    157 - If he came cheaply, I wouldn't mind. He provides a glove similar to Bradley's while not sacrificing slugging to do so. His carrer OBP of around .320 is distressing, but again, he's worth it a low cost.

    Not that he's going to sign for a low cost.

    2005-09-07 14:23:23
    159.   blue22
    157 - But we got the sweet part of OP's contract this year. The next two years get ugly, and his performance this year did not exactly scream 2yrs/$20M.

    Maybe not $10M, but I think we'd have to send a good chunk of change with him wherever he goes.

    2005-09-07 14:25:44
    160.   blue22
    158 - I'd put Cruz out there full time before going with Jones.

    Werth/Ledee, Drew, and Cruz isn't a horrible outfield, though I'd like to see one of those corner positions upgraded.

    2005-09-07 14:27:06
    161.   Eric Enders
    Jacque Jones is a bad player who is about to get worse now that he's on the wrong side of 30. He's had one good season in his life (2002). Last year his OPS+ was 90, which is absolutely pathetic for a corner outfielder. He plays in the Homerdome and yet his career OBP is still under .330.

    He brings nothing to the table that Jason Repko doesn't. Why pay $5-6 mil for the same player that can be had for 300K?

    If DePo signs him, that alone could be considered a firing offense.

    Wilkerson, however, isn't a bad idea.

    2005-09-07 14:42:32
    162.   Steve
    152 -- He had Scutaro batting sixth a day or two ago.
    2005-09-07 14:46:25
    163.   King of the Hobos
    153 At least he admits he used steroids. Problem is this is the third time he's been suspended so it was a lot harder to hide it...
    2005-09-07 14:48:32
    164.   blue22
    162 - You just can't catch a break, can you?
    2005-09-07 14:54:42
    165.   ddger
    Against Schmidt:

    Phillips is (0 for 9)
    Edwards is (0 for 3)

    Proposed Lineup Today:

    Perez 3B (5 for 7)
    Robles SS (0 for 2)
    Kent 2B (5 for 23)
    Saenz 1B (1 for 3)
    Ledee LF (2 for 6)
    Cruz CF (1 for 7)
    Werth RF (0 for 5)
    Navarro C

    2005-09-07 14:58:07
    166.   dzzrtRatt
    111Reportedly the team is very upset about Lowe.

    Really? In 2005, a professional sports team would dump a player they otherwise would keep, strictly because he cheated on his wife?

    Agents for free agents will take note of the new, Simon-pure Dodger sex policies. I thought half of all married people cheated at some time in their marriage, and that half of all marriages end in divorce. Combine that with the temptations of the road; I've always assumed that unless a ballplayer is an avowed Christian, he was probably getting lots of action after hours.

    Didn't we go through an impeachment to prove that private behavior has nothing to do with performance of one's duties?

    2005-09-07 14:59:36
    167.   Steve
    They bunted the other night too. Stranded the runner of course.
    2005-09-07 15:01:46
    168.   joekings
    how b not brothers typewriters? i can't think of what else it could possibly be.
    2005-09-07 15:02:45
    169.   sanchez101
    is anyone watching sportcenter. It seems that the Giants were hoping to get Bonds in a simulated game to evaluate him, but the Dodgers woulnt allow it because they needed the field for team photo day.
    2005-09-07 15:03:34
    170.   ddger
    Surprising stats (W-L):

    When Phillips starts at 1st (9-8)

    When Phillips bats 4th (4-4)

    When Edwards starts at 3rd (9-22)

    2005-09-07 15:06:26
    171.   ElysianPark62
    #166: Just reporting what I've read lately. If they tried to get rid of every philandering player, there would be very few left. It sounds like the extent, not just the nature, of his bad boy behavior is the concern.

    This apparently was not an isolated incident, and last week a reporter claimed it was one reason that Boston parted ways with Lowe. Remember Epstein saying they "went out of their way" not to trash Lowe? Why would someone say that if there was nothing to trash? Curious...

    2005-09-07 15:07:26
    172.   ElysianPark62
    #169--I'm sure the Frisco media and fans will squawk about this. Unfair and petty of the Dodgers! How dare they?!
    2005-09-07 15:10:40
    173.   blue22
    169 - I really do love this rivalry :)
    2005-09-07 15:12:13
    174.   sanchez101
    166,171 - I think the dodgers will trade him because they dont feel like trading a slightly better than average hitter $8 million a year for 3 more years. Of course they couldnt actually say that, so Depodesta and McCourt will claim publicly that the reason for the trade will be for character concerns.
    2005-09-07 15:13:38
    175.   sanchez101
    172-can the LA media squak about having to watch a jucied-up goon beat the dodgers every year (prior to 2004)
    2005-09-07 15:15:06
    176.   dzzrtRatt
    171 It sounds to me like Lowe has set up a home with Carolyn Hughes and they are living together as a couple. Other than the fact that he chose as a girlfriend someone in the public eye, this seems mild.

    Of course I'm old enough to remember when Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich of the New York Yankees exchanged wives. Back in 1971 that seemed pretty wild; still does.

    2005-09-07 15:15:53
    177.   blue22
    174 - Can you give that first sentence another whirl? I don't know what you mean, or who you are referring to.
    2005-09-07 15:19:52
    178.   Bob Timmermann
    166

    The Dodgers will populate the roster with clones of J.D. Drew just to be safe.

    2005-09-07 15:20:44
    179.   Eric Enders
    If MLB players had "character" clauses in their contracts prohibiting adultery, 90% of the players would probably be out of work. Unless Lowe is jumping on everything that moves, the only thing that really distinguishes him from the rest is that he happened to choose a talking head who covers the team.

    Four Dodgers (Lowe, Bradley, Werth, Lima when he was with us) have been accused of adultery in the newspapers within the last year. And those four were only reported because there were attached circumstances that caused it to be newsworthy. There are many more we don't know about. And I'd really rather not know about it, because it's none of my business.

    But it's certainly very commonplace in baseball, and always has been.

    2005-09-07 15:20:55
    180.   dzzrtRatt
    174 If Lowe is a 'slightly better than average' who is overpaid at $8 million a year, why does anyone think we can trade him? We'd have to give him away. Before we did that, I'd like to see who we have to replace him with.

    Looping back to Jon's post, I think he's right that Dodger pitching has been the weak spot, but I don't see a way to trade ourselves out of our current circumstance. We have to wait and hope that the Baby Blues are as good as advertised, and the waiting period probably will be as long as Lowe's contract.

    2005-09-07 15:26:45
    181.   regfairfield
    All eight million dollars get you now is a slightly better than average pitcher. Penny was a complete steal at that price.

    I have never gotten this hatred over Lowe.

    2005-09-07 15:29:09
    182.   blue22
    Lowe will be fine. What are we basing this criticism on? His ERA is fine. His record isn't his fault. He's had a good 2nd half, and a good start to the year.

    The contract is a little long (3 more years) but he should be a serviceable 2 or 3 for the majority of it.

    2005-09-07 15:32:17
    183.   blue22
    179 - If adultery was prohibited in the NBA, I'd be starting for the Lakers.
    2005-09-07 15:37:27
    184.   Xeifrank
    157. I wouldn't be for signing Jacques Jones as his OPS is pretty average and not much better than Werth's who makes $337k this year. If somehow we could get him for less than $1mil then maybe throw him in to our OF mix. Problem is, the Twins may try to dump Lohse or Mays with Jones as they have a surplus of starting pitching with Baker and Liriano coming up. My vote is "No" on J.Jones. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 15:38:41
    185.   regfairfield
    I think at Jacque Jones has to do is point at Garret Anderson's new monstrosity of a contract and then rake in the bucks.
    2005-09-07 15:39:51
    186.   Eric Enders
    Jones' OPS is not pretty average. It is significantly below average for an outfielder, even moreso for a corner outfielder.
    2005-09-07 15:40:29
    187.   Bob Timmermann
    But Jacque Jones is a local college hero! And it's well known that L.A. fans like the team to be populated with local guys! ;-)
    2005-09-07 15:41:10
    188.   Bob Timmermann
    Well Oakland certainly got 4 runs in a hurry in the 9th to tie the game.
    2005-09-07 15:43:13
    189.   Xeifrank
    166. There was that small thing about lying under oath, but who cares about denying somebody their due process or something unimportant like that. :) vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 15:43:21
    190.   Uncle Miltie
    165- you forgot this one:
    Against Schmidt:
    Choi 0-13 8 K

    We need Izturis back! Against Schmidt he's hitting .304 with a HR (First batter of the year for the Dodgers)

    Tonight's lineup (what it should look like:
    Robles SS
    Perez 3B
    Kent 2B
    Ledee LF
    Saenz 1B
    Cruz RF
    Werth CF

    Tracy's dream lineup:
    Robles SS
    Edwards LF
    Kent 2B
    Phillips 1B
    Saenz 3B
    Werth RF
    Navarro C
    Repko CF

    Tonight's real lineup:
    Robles SS
    Edwards 3B
    Kent 2B
    Saenz 1B
    Cruz RF
    Werth CF
    Grabowski LF
    Navarro C (possibly switch Grabowski and Navarro)

    2005-09-07 15:44:12
    191.   Jon Weisman
    181 - the hatred of Lowe is actually a sublimated hatred of "All eight million dollars get you now is a slightly better than average pitcher."
    2005-09-07 15:44:25
    192.   Bob Timmermann
    Now the A's are trying to sacrifice! What is the world coming to?
    2005-09-07 15:45:09
    193.   blue22
    Is Edwards the new Phillips?
    2005-09-07 15:45:33
    194.   regfairfield
    Jacque Jones has a worse VORP than So Taguchi.

    I take back my reserved positive comments about him.

    2005-09-07 15:47:30
    195.   Bob Timmermann
    Edwards increased playing time has coincided with most of the major injuries, so the Dodgers record with him as a starter isn't surprising.
    2005-09-07 15:48:11
    196.   Steve
    Macha is a goon.
    2005-09-07 15:48:57
    197.   Xeifrank
    186. Good point. I was just trying to be nice to him. Just say no to Jones! Giles/Matsui or bust! vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 15:49:01
    198.   blue22
    196 - I thought he was hired because he was a patsy to the Moneyball machine. What happened? Is he raging against the machine?
    2005-09-07 15:50:07
    199.   regfairfield
    Reading the comments on Athletics Nation may be hazardous to your health. There is a downside to becoming that ridiculously popular.
    2005-09-07 15:50:09
    200.   Steve
    Bunt, bunt, bunt, bunt, bunt. If I wanted to see bad-hitting first basemen bunt, I could watch Jason Phillips.
    Show/Hide Comments 201-250
    2005-09-07 15:50:50
    201.   Bob Timmermann
    196

    Oakland had 1st and 2nd and no outs and had Hatteberg facing Guardado and Macha probably figured that Hatteberg would be better off staying out of a DP or striking out.

    2005-09-07 15:51:55
    202.   Kayaker7
    200 I don't think Tracy's had Phillips bunt this year, though has had Drew and Choi bunt. Y'know that JP is the RBI machine.
    2005-09-07 15:52:39
    203.   Xeifrank
    Did the A's just win on a walkoff walk?
    vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 15:53:01
    204.   regfairfield
    Hatteberg does have a ridiculously high double play rate. Don't have the resources right now to do the math on that bunt.

    However, bunting a runner from second with no out is a good idea mathematically (provided you need just one run.)

    2005-09-07 15:53:06
    205.   Kayaker7
    Nick Swisher with the walk-off walk. :D
    2005-09-07 15:53:16
    206.   Steve
    Dear Eric Chavez,

    Please. Feel free to stick around for the rest of September.

    Your Best New Pal,

    Steve

    2005-09-07 15:53:41
    207.   Bob Timmermann
    Jason Phillips has two sacrifices this year.
    2005-09-07 15:53:51
    208.   Steve
    No bunting. Ever.
    2005-09-07 15:55:58
    209.   Bob Timmermann
    208

    You will be haunted by the Ghost of Dickey Pearce.

    http://tinyurl.com/9tuek

    2005-09-07 15:56:26
    210.   Steve
    190 -- By the way, don't do that! I thought you were posting the actual lineup! I actually have to watch them tonight! I didn't get in for free because Jerry gave me a ticket just to watch Grabowski flail at garbage.
    2005-09-07 15:57:01
    211.   Kayaker7
    207 Really? I must not have been watching when he bunted. For some reason, I can't picture it.
    2005-09-07 15:59:03
    212.   the OZ
    Late to the party...

    C G H J M P Q T V X L Z

    ...on the first try. I don't know any of the others.

    I was at last night's game and was amazed at the low attendance - 35,000 were announced, but it looked much, much more sparse than that. Still, it was a fun ending to an otherwise forgettable game.

    Since I haven't read through last night's comments, did anyone see/discuss the incident at third base in which Penny ran Snow back to the bag, then yelled at him after Snow had taken a big running lead? It was one of the weirder things I've seen during a ballgame.

    2005-09-07 15:59:37
    213.   Kayaker7
    209 Bob, is that your brother, the reporter?

    I like that. "Tricky hit."

    2005-09-07 16:00:00
    214.   Xeifrank
    208. There are times when you need one run and at the correct spot in your lineup that bunting is not a bad strategy... or perhaps when the pitcher or a very weak hitter like Grabowski is up that it's ok to bunt. In most circumstances where bunting is Ok, it only has a very very small margin of expectancy of scoring a run over not bunting. I would never look at a succesful bunt (non pitcher) and say "Hey, that was one heck of a smart play", where on the otherhand your hear that in the MSM all the time. I think for Halloween Steve needs to dress up as Jim Tracy and knock on doors and tell people "I am Jim Tracy and I am bunting!" vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 16:02:20
    215.   Kayaker7
    214 I suggest a new Louisville slugger model, called the Tracy. It will be a short, fat bat, you can use for bunting. Too heavy to swing, but the max cross section to make contact.
    2005-09-07 16:02:43
    216.   Steve
    Everything has its place and time. But major league managers are incapable of such fine distinctions. If anyone is afraid of the double play, just let the guy stand up there and see if the pitcher walks him.
    2005-09-07 16:05:58
    217.   regfairfield
    Sadly, Scott Hatteberg will ground into a double play more than twice as much as he walks.

    Isolated Patience - .073
    Double play percentage - 19.9%

    2005-09-07 16:07:35
    218.   Bob Timmermann
    213

    I've never seen that man before in my life.

    2005-09-07 16:15:32
    219.   dzzrtRatt
    Don't know why I'm having an epidemic of double-postings this week.
    2005-09-07 16:24:49
    220.   Bob Timmermann
    You know if the Dodgers lose tonight and Arizona wins, the Naccarato Prophecy will come true. The Dodgers will be in fourth.
    2005-09-07 16:27:52
    221.   Bob Timmermann
    And Arizona takes a 1-0 lead as Green doubles in Green in the second.
    2005-09-07 16:28:07
    222.   King of the Hobos
    Danny Muegge pitching for the Vero Beach Dodgers. He was acquired in the Shawn Green trade. Still no Denker. Tonight's a must win, 0-0 in the 2nd

    Hoffman CF
    Dewitt 3B
    Kemp RF
    Raglani LF
    Dunlap 1B
    Rohan SS
    Bellorin DH
    Bruce 2B
    Ellis C

    2005-09-07 16:29:17
    223.   ElysianPark62
    I'm not for dumping Lowe. I was happy they signed him, and if he can stop giving up gopher balls, I believe he'll be fine for them. He can be almost unhittable at times (as can Odalis). His focus is questionable, though (again, like Odalis). I could see an AL team going for Lowe. The contract he signed was not too out of sync with others given out last year. Jaret Wright? Eric Milton? Good grief.

    Jacque Jones is a FA, so they wouldn't trade for him. I am not thrilled with his numbers, and they don't sound like DePodesta numbers, anyway. There just isn't much on the market this year.

    I would really like Matsui--unlikely, however. Konerko wouldn't be bad, either. He's a run producer, which they sorely need. He has had several solid years. His OBP and avg. are not stellar, but they need another guy or two who can drive people home, with 90- to 100-RBI potential.

    However, I don't see them giving a large contract to him to block the 1B prospects. Plus, there's always Choi if he's still here!

    2005-09-07 16:29:18
    224.   Jim Hitchcock
    Man, you guys are really good at brand names!

    Like Eric, the only ones that came easy were the Photography/Electronics companies.

    I really don't watch enough commercials. I have a tendency to serially abuse the revert button on my remote.

    But, well done!

    2005-09-07 16:32:10
    225.   Jim Hitchcock
    220 - Seriously, Bob, I think we would all be happier if your current score book ended on a high note.
    2005-09-07 16:33:13
    226.   Steve
    D-Rays 4, Yanks 0, and Sheffield has left the game in the first with a bad hammy
    2005-09-07 16:34:24
    227.   Steelyeri
    218 "I've never seen that man before in my life. "

    That's exactly what I would say if he was my brother. :)

    P.S. LOL @ the "tricky hit"

    2005-09-07 16:37:52
    228.   Bob Timmermann
    Arizona is ahead 2-0. Arizona has Webb (aka The Good Pitcher) going against Redman (aka The Bad Pitcher)
    2005-09-07 16:44:13
    229.   Bob Timmermann
    This was in the MLB.com story about the A's- Mariners game:

    It's the first time in A's history that they have trailed by four runs in their last at-bat and come back to win.

    First time ever? In the entire history of the franchise? The A's have been playing since 1901. You would think they would have had a bigger comeback than that one of these years.

    2005-09-07 16:48:00
    230.   Xeifrank
    229. So their at bat has to start down by four runs exactly. I assume that doesn't mean they haven't come back from deficits greater than four runs in their last at bat. I would still think it would've happened half a dozen times. Interesting tidbit ntl. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 16:49:23
    231.   Bob Timmermann
    And now it's 3-0 Arizona.
    2005-09-07 16:49:31
    232.   Xeifrank
    James Black v. Andre Agassi will probably have my attention more than the Dodger game tonight, unless of course Choi starts. Choi starting!?? That's pretty funny! vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 16:50:40
    233.   Xeifrank
    232. Before Mr Spellchecker steps in, that should read Blake not Black. My sincere apologies. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 16:51:04
    234.   Jim Tracy
    229 Actually, the A's last did this in 1957. Of course they were the Philadelphia A's then. This is the first time they have done this as the Oakland A's.

    July 4, 1957, A's vs. White Sox.

    2005-09-07 16:52:52
    235.   Bob Timmermann
    I think James Black for James Blake is a mistake that is understandable.
    2005-09-07 16:53:21
    236.   Steelyeri
    Thanks Jim. So this is what you do while you should be working on the lineups.
    2005-09-07 16:54:17
    237.   Bob Timmermann
    234
    They were in Kansas City in 1957 though.

    I hate it though when teams just figure out their records from the time when they moved to a particular city.

    2005-09-07 16:56:33
    238.   Bob Timmermann
    234
    And looking at ESPN.com, I see that it was AP who has the A's playing in Philadelphia in 1957. Not our beloved Jim Tracy.
    2005-09-07 16:58:36
    239.   Steve
    With Jim Tracy, it's always someone else's fault!
    2005-09-07 17:00:04
    240.   Jim Tracy
    236 That reminds me... need to go throw darts on players' names to pick lineup. (must remove hee-hee seop choi's name from dartboard).
    2005-09-07 17:00:34
    241.   sanchez101
    I agree that Lowe's contract was not to out of line with the going rate for FA pitchers last year. His contract is far from a dreifort-type disaster. But, being better than the milton or wright contracts doesnt mean it was good.

    A GM should be spending his money where their are market inefficiencies in his favor. Depodesta was obviously stuck, so he had to swallow lowe at $36/4yrs. But if his era stays around 3.77(and maybe even if it doesnt), Lowe will have plenty of value to teams that think they need to spend a lot of money on a big name/veteran pitcher.

    If the dodgers could aquire a younger cheaper pitcher via trade such as Aaron Harang, Krik Saarloos, Brian Moehler, Bruce Chen, or Brandon Claussen, all of whom could be just as good as Lowe at a fraction of the price, they could put more money into other areas of the roster.

    On of the dangers GM's commonly fall into is overpaying for marginal talent. While he is usefull, Lowe is marginal talent. (according to BP his translated ERA this year is 4.75 and he's always allowed a large number of unearned runs) How many pitchers are capable of an ERA around 4.00 in Dodger Stadium (even jose lima pulled it off)?

    All im saying is that there are better ways of spending $8 million AND filling Lowe's spot in the rotation. That said there are bigger roster problems that Depodesta needs to sort out.

    2005-09-07 17:01:35
    242.   Steve
    (according to BP his translated ERA this year is 4.75 and he's always allowed a large number of unearned runs)

    This is the key point, and nobody here has adequately dealt with it.

    2005-09-07 17:05:07
    243.   Jim Tracy
    239 Well, given the information I had, and the reseach that was provided, I decided to come up with an answer that not only answers the question, but provides a response to the question. However, whether the blame ultimately lies with whom, is for others to decide and as long as the ones who matter ultimately make up their mind that the one to blame is not the one who comes up with the response or the answers, then they are absolutely correct. Do I disagree with that? No, I can't say that I do.
    2005-09-07 17:07:04
    244.   sanchez101
    242. I dont think that Lowe has ever pitched in front of a good defense, so i guess that has something to do with it. Perhaps he has trouble pitching through mistakes by his defense, so when a baserunner does reach by error he has a higher tendancy of scoring. All I know is that an unearned run is counted the same as an earned run when it comes to team wins and losses.
    2005-09-07 17:07:25
    245.   Jon Weisman
    242 - Me did, didn't me?
    2005-09-07 17:08:01
    246.   Bob Timmermann
    The suburban California version of Cesar Izturis doubled in a run in Pittsburgh to cut the DBacks lead to 3-1.
    2005-09-07 17:10:23
    247.   Xeifrank
    So if we didn't sign Lowe who would we have had in his place? Lima? Ishi? Erickson? Mahomes? or thrown similiar money at a pitcher with a similiar track record? It may have been more than a month or so ago, but I believe Jon had a post that showed all the FA agent pitchers that signed during the offseason and ranked how they had done and showed their contracts. Lowe as poorly as he was pitching at the time was somewhere ranked around the middle of the list. I would love to see this list again, with updated stats. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 17:18:37
    248.   sanchez101
    247. Im not saying that Lowe was a bad FA signing compared to other pitchers last offseason. Im saying that the dodgers should stay as far away as they can from FA pitchers.

    Lima, ishii, erickson, and mahomes are terrible options. But what does it say about building pitching staffs that a terrible option like Jose Lima worked in 2004. What does a small market team like Oakland or Minnisota do when they need a starte?. They dont pay the going rate for free agents because they cant. Look at what the A's did in getting Lilly in 2002 or Saarloos in 2004 or how Minnisota traded for Silva in 2004. All im saying is that trading a mid-level prospect for a younger, cheaper pitcher is better than submitting to the whims of the FA market place.

    2005-09-07 17:22:50
    249.   dzzrtRatt
    241 If the dodgers could aquire a younger cheaper pitcher via trade such as Aaron Harang, Krik Saarloos, Brian Moehler, Bruce Chen, or Brandon Claussen, all of whom could be just as good as Lowe at a fraction of the price, they could put more money into other areas of the roster.

    Shhh! If you keep talking about this, some other GM might think of it too, and then the value of Harang, etc. will go up! So keep these names on the down-low from now on.

    2005-09-07 17:25:44
    250.   Steve
    245 -- yes, you did. But 248 is a nice summary, and I defer to it.
    Show/Hide Comments 251-300
    2005-09-07 17:26:04
    251.   Xeifrank
    Plugging last nights lineup into my computer sim program and running 100,000 game simulations came up with an average runs scored per game of only 4.03845

    A team of 9 Jeff Kents would score: 7.367
    A team of 9 J.Phillips would score: 3.403
    A team of 9 H.Choi would score: 5.491
    A team of 9 J.Repko would score: 3.334
    A team of 9 M.Edwards would score: 3.182

    atleast edwards is above Pi. vr, Xei

    2005-09-07 17:27:25
    252.   KLV
    Lowe's overpaid, but one point in his favor is his durability. He's a good bet to give you 200 roughly league-average innings, which has value. It's guys like Odalis Perez who always get hurt that screw you because it means 10-15 starts a year from guys who should be pitching in AAA.

    I'm starting to think that the next market inefficiency (first OBP, then defense, now ???) is going to be some teams' ability to better project durability in certain types of players and predict injuries better. Obviously, the Dodgers are not that team.

    2005-09-07 17:30:21
    253.   Jon Weisman
    Mmm, pi.

    New game thread is open.

    2005-09-07 17:30:55
    254.   Telemachos
    As pleasing and elegant as it may be to get the absolute best bang for the buck (pitching or otherwise), if you're in a bigger-market town (like LA) it may well be worth paying more to get a significantly better player.

    This doesn't necessarily apply to Lowe v. another young unsung pitcher, but it does apply towards, say, spending $1 million for a position platoon when spending $4 million might get you a solid starter.

    This does pre-suppose that the owner is willing to spend some extra money... but honestly, even if the Yanks are wild spenders, over the last decade (from a fan standpoint) it's certainly been worth it, irregardless of how efficient it is.

    2005-09-07 17:32:24
    255.   Eric Enders
    252

    Odalis Perez has started 30, 31, and 32 games the past three seasons. A full season in a 5-man rotation is 32 starts.

    The only injury-riddled season he's had with the Dodgers is this one, with 17 starts. That is a far cry from "10-15 starts a year."

    2005-09-07 17:33:17
    256.   Xeifrank
    Anyone have the VORP of our starting pitchers? Penny, Lowe, Weaver, Houlton?
    thanks... I remember Lowe was suppose to be worth the $ because he didn't give up very many HRs (Groundball pitcher) and Dodger stadium supposedly suppressed doubles and he had better than average control. Obviously, the part about not giving up too many dingers didn't pan out for this year, but he has still maintained a large GB/FB ratio. How does his ratio compare to previous years? Any dropoff there? vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 17:35:06
    257.   blue22
    I just looked recently at his G/F, and it was 2nd in the NL to super-sinker Brandon Webb.
    2005-09-07 17:38:59
    258.   KLV
    255

    I stand corrected as to Odalis Perez. This is indeed his first injury-riddled season. Let's hope he comes back strong in 2006.

    2005-09-07 17:41:03
    259.   Xeifrank
    257. Yep, same 1-2 finish as last year. Any idea of Lowe's GB/FB ratio is similiar to previous seasons? With all the HRs he has given up one might think so. vr, Xei
    2005-09-07 17:52:56
    260.   blue22
    His career mark is 3.28. He's at 3.01 this year. Career low of 2.87 last year, though he'd been in the mid-3's most of his career.
    2005-09-07 17:53:29
    261.   blue22
    Stats from ESPN.com, btw. Click on his player card, heading - stats.
    2005-09-07 17:57:47
    262.   sanchez101
    Maybe all of Lowe's homerun are luck, or hopefully he regresses to the mean and gives up 2 or 3 hr's next year.
    2005-09-07 18:04:22
    263.   Eric Enders
    Lowe and Weaver have both given up an ungodly amount of home runs this year, many more than could have reasonably been expected.

    It'd be interesting to read some sort of sabermetric analysis of why this is. I'd do it myself, but, well, I'm not smart enough.

    Just from watching Weaver, he appears to be pitching high in the zone too much. He's always missing his target up, and from observation it looks like it's because he's overthrowing.

    Of course, that theory could very well be complete hooey.

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