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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

2007 Opening Day Roster Locks
2007-02-06 05:00
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Having given the Opening Day roster locks short shrift in past Spring Training Primers, finally I'll take the time to give them due attention this season.

Remember - no one's saying these guys couldn't be hurt or traded, but otherwise, they're in like Clipper Flynn.

Starting Pitchers
Derek Lowe, RHP: My impression of Lowe over the past two seasons is that he has a sensational month, a terrible month, and some pretty good months in between. He seems to periodically fall off his game for ultimately tangible reasons, which is good - the mystery has a findable solution. His contract, which people like me thought the Dodgers would be trying to unload here in year three, is now a bargain. He's turning 34 this year, but it feels, if I may be allowed to feel, like a young 34. His durability continues unabated. As surprising as it seems, there's something reassuringly stable about him, and while Jason Schmidt is being called the new ace, Lowe might be the one who racks up the most cumulative effective innings.

Jason Schmidt, RHP: I've got an uneasy feeling about Schmidt, though perhaps I shouldn't: He rang up 213 1/3 innings last year with an ERA+ of 125 and 180 strikeouts. He hasn't thrown fewer than 172 innings since 2001. He's only half a year older than Lowe. But I'm just paranoid he's going to pull up lame. Fortunately, the Dodgers' sixth starter is Hong-Chih Kuo or Chad Billingsley - not bad.

Lowe, 2006: 218 IP, 97 runs allowed, 88 earned
Schmidt, 2006: 213 1/3 IP, 94 runs allowed, 85 earned

Brad Penny, RHP: He can be All-Star great, and he can the guy you cringed at when they brought him in for relief in the playoffs. Let's see how he does with an offseason's worth of rest. Clean slate.

Randy Wolf, LHP: If he's just league-average, that should be okay - but understand what that means. It means some five-inning, four-run outings mixed in with the seven-and-threes. It means some games when he's going to need some help. But if he can avoid those three-inning, six-run games, that should work for starters. (Get it? Starters.)

Bullpen
Takashi Saito, RHP: There's no reason he should be immune from the relief pitcher roller coaster, but he showed such a nice mix of pitches last season, I give him a fighting chance to approach his wonderful 2006 season. (But not match it - his ERA+ was a freakin' 222 last year.) What's most disconcerting is how he showed so much so late in his career - could it be a mirage?

Jonathan Broxton, RHP: I've got nothing bad to say about this guy. Just 22 1/2 years old and superb. Facing 320 batters last season, 95 baserunners and 97 strikeouts. MVP of the 2007 bullpen.

Brett Tomko, RHP: Tomko's 29 2/3 innings as a relief pitcher were marred by a horrible series in Chicago, when he allowed six runs in an inning and a third and blew two saves. Outside of that, his ERA was 1.91. And so no, he shouldn't be dumped for a useless prospect - he qualifies as a major league pitcher. But he is a highly paid reliever. He would be a modestly priced starting pitcher on many teams, and I can't see why the Dodgers shouldn't be able to find a way to take advantage of that and get something meaningful in trade. Ideally, Tomko would give the team a great April out of the bullpen and general manager Ned Colletti would sell high. But I'd be happy to see the Dodgers make the move now.

Mark Hendrickson, LHP: Hoping that Hendrickson has been reborn as a reliever is a little like hoping that it rains on the day you're too sick to go to the ballgame. It's a cut-your-losses frame of mind, one that is far short of your original hope. Yeah, he's been seeing a psychologist; yeah, he might cut loose over two innings knowing he doesn't have to go six. He should uptick as a reliever. But the last man on your staff isn't supposed to be someone that cost this much.

Catchers
Russell Martin, C: Potentially the most popular Dodger and the face of the team, Martin played in 144 games last season with Las Vegas and Los Angeles, plus the playoffs. His OPS after August 1 was roughly 100 points lower than before, but it was still pretty great for a 22-year-old catcher. He threw out about a third of the runners attempting to steal on him, too. Some of you will get worked up over his spot in the batting order, but don't let it spoil the fun of watching this guy play.

Mike Lieberthal, C: A better hitter than last year's backup, Toby Hall, and certainly figures to be happier to be in Los Angeles. His career OPS+ is an above-average 102, and it will be interesting to see how playing once or twice a week affects that.

Infielders:
Nomar Garciaparra, 1B: It seems wrong to be pessimistic about a guy who was essentially a hero of the Dodgers' playoff run. But it's hard to escape the feeling that we saw him at his best last season - playing three-quarters of the season, hitting the ball for about half of that, hitting only occasionally for the other half. Honestly, is there any reason to believe his body will allow him to improve upon him being a middle-of-the-road first baseman?

But enough pessimism. Garciaparra won't be an easy out, will have James Loney helping him rest, and should provide some more memorable moments in 2007.

Jeff Kent, 2B: In a decline year for him, a year in which he actually was an easy out throughout the first month, Kent was still the No. 5 second baseman in baseball offensively. Defensively, he looked like Stonehenge by year's end, but what are you gonna do? Oh, and by the way, it's been said that Kent took on a new offseason regimen to come into Spring Training in better shape. I think that's what Odalis Perez used to say he did.

Rafael Furcal, SS: Like Kent, Furcal got off to a slow start at the season's outset. To some extent, this is a pattern for Furcal, which is a pet peeve of mine. It's one thing for injuries to play a role, as they may have last season, but otherwise I can't fathom a logical reason for a player to begin each year in a slump. At some point, you have to be able to fix it. Anyway, Furcal ended 2006 with such lofty production that he might be the team's No. 3 hitter on Opening Day. More likely, I think, he ends up No. 2 as he tries to repeat one of the best seasons by a shortstop in 2006.

Wilson Betemit, 3B: Discussed at length here.

Olmedo Saenz, 1B-3B: Saenz only played 78 innings at third base last season - if you don't see him there in April or May, you might never see him there again. And he's probably the third-string first baseman as well. That leaves him to focus on his hitting, which has been nice: OPS+ numbers for his three Dodger seasons of 123, 113 and 131. Although he has been monstrous against lefties, he has also improved against righties (calling to mind an old Dodger Thoughts piece, "Only If He Hits Righties Does He Hit Lefties"). One of these years - maybe this year - Saenz will prove all too mortal, but for now, few pitchers will want to face him in the late innings.

Outfielders:
Luis Gonzalez, LF: The guy hits 52 doubles and still ends up with a nothing season. It's gonna be like reliving the Fred McGriff fadeout.

Juan Pierre, CF: Discussed in detail here. Some folks will be counting his hits and steals, and some will be counting his outs, and rarely shall meet the twain.

Marlon Anderson, UT: As unbelievable as he was last September, it was such an aberration that there's a good chance he won't even be good enough to be on the team this September.

* * *

Update: Brian Kamenetzky of Blue Notes has an interview with Dodger youth guru Logan White. Also, there's a fun story about the Washington, D.C. baseball blogging community from Barry Svrluga at the Washington Post.

Comments (136)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-02-06 05:27:57
1.   bhsportsguy
I believe Rafael Furcal would fall under Jon's definition of a "roster lock."

And I would think that Joe Beimel, Andre Ethier and probably Ramon Martinez are locks too. I suppose they added Wilson Valdez to the 40-man roster for a reason so its possible that he could battle for that middle infield bench position. If Beimel wasn't going to make the club, I don't know why they would be going to arbitration with him.

I had the same conclusion about Lowe's contract, both his deal and Penny's deal look fine compared to similar priced contracts, both are only signed for 2 more years with a team option for Penny for 2009.

2007-02-06 06:06:46
2.   Xeifrank
Any contracts of significance expiring at the end of this year for the Dodgers?
vr, Xei
2007-02-06 06:35:11
3.   CharlieBrown
Okay, my comment doesn't have very much to do with Jon's fine post, but I just read Kevin Goldstein's Top 10 prospects for the Devil Rays and wow--I thought the Dodgers had a nice farm system, but there is no comparison. Not only are the Rays stacked with potential all-stars, but as much as Ned tried to bolster their Top 10 list for prospects and under 25 players (Tiffany, Jackson, Navarro, Guzman--were there others?), NONE of them show up and it probably wasn't a close call.

So hopefully this is a sign the Dodgers didn't give up much, but I would think Navarro and Guzman might have still made the Dodger lists if they stayed.

2007-02-06 06:54:57
4.   Xeifrank
3. It's not a fair comparison because the DRays traded away all their best players like Mark Hendrickson and Julio Lugo to get all those top prospects. :)
But yeah, they're stacked. Young and Dukes are going to make impacts this year.
vr, Xei
2007-02-06 07:00:08
5.   Jon Weisman
1 - Dang it - I left off Furcal. That's what I get for doing this so late at night. I talked about Ethier, Martinez and Beimel on Sunday.
2007-02-06 07:18:08
6.   Bumsrap
I think I remember that the Dodgers sent 8 players to Athletics Performance in Tempe, AZ and three of those players were Martin, Ethier, and Dewitt.

If this is true, does anybody remember the other 5?

I am curious as to see what this fitness program does for those 8 players.

2007-02-06 07:48:54
7.   Doug N
1. are we assuming saito is the closer, or does anyone see another april of 'closer by comittee?'

2. i have higher hopes for nomar than kent.

2007-02-06 07:48:56
8.   bhsportsguy
5 Furcal is such a lock, you could write his name on the lineup card in pen.

There is a reason why the Devil Rays and D-Backs have a lot of prospects, they have had a lot of No. 1 picks plus they have been willing to pay the big bucks. Certainly you have still pick the right guys but while Loney, Billingsley, Elbert and Kershaw were all first round picks, its because of guys like Kemp, Martin, LaRoche, Meloan that have made the system what is today.

Navarro would have had too many at-bats to make the list, Baseball America still projects Navarro and Guzman to be in the regular lineup in 2010. I think the prognosis on Jackson and Tiffany are much more up in the air, you might want to keep watch on what they do with Edwin this spring because he will be out of options.

2007-02-06 07:56:48
9.   Benaiah
7 - Saito is definitely the closer, barring some sort of a meltdown in Spring Training. He was fantastic last year.
2007-02-06 07:59:46
10.   still bevens
2 I saw a list on Dodgers.com last week or so and its relatively few key pieces of the team. I think Kent's deal is up (with a PA vesting option), Gonzales, maybe Saenz and Marlon Anderson. As far as pitchers are concerned Im not too sure (Saito, Tomko?)
2007-02-06 08:07:51
11.   Bumsrap
If I were to name my longshot for opening day (maybe by May 1) player to supplant one of the locks I would pick Maloan to be the closer.

Not such a longshot in my mind would be for Loney to open at first.

And my pick to drive you guys crazy would be for Betemit to open in right.

2007-02-06 08:14:38
12.   bhsportsguy
This was the first year the D-Rays were ranked as the No. 1 Farm System, the Dodgers were 6th because their best prospect, Matt Kemp, no longer qualifies (though to be fair, B.J. Upton for the Rays has not been eligible since his first call-up a few years ago) and 5 of the Dodgers top 8 2006 prospects (and that list did not include Ethier who was still on the A's list) no longer qualify (Billingsley, Broxton, Martin, Kemp and Guzman) 16 of the top 20 2006 prospects are still in the organization but you would also have to include Jackson and Navarro since they were barely over the prospect qualifications.

As far as where some of the former Dodger prospects rank in other systems,

Guzman was 11th, which is still a drop since he was a top 20 prospect in all of baseball last year, Sergio Pedroza is 27th for the D-Rays, Tiffany was not in their top 30.

Julio Pimentel and Blake Johnson were 17th and 16th last year in a deep Dodger system, this year they are 17th and 18th in KC's system.

Jhonny Nunez was traded for Merlin Anderson and he is National's 14th best prospect.

2007-02-06 08:22:37
13.   Marty
rarely shall meet the twain?
2007-02-06 08:23:43
14.   Jon Weisman
13 - I just flipped the usual word order.
2007-02-06 08:26:38
15.   Marty
but, but, that changes the meaning
2007-02-06 08:27:02
16.   bhsportsguy
2 I am only looking at FAs since there are a lot younger guys with one year deals but the club still has their rights unless they decide to drop them.

Starting from Jon's Roster Lock list,

Randy Wolf has a one year deal though a second year is guaranteed if he pitches 180 innings.

Jeff Kent has a one year deal, a second guaranteed year if he has 550 PAs or a team option for 2008.

Luis Gonzalez has one year deal.

Olmedo Saenz has one year left on his contract.

Marlin Anderson has one year left on his contract.

Ramon Martinez has one year deal plus a team option for 2008.

Elmer Dessens has one year left on his contract.

Brett Tomko is in the second year of his two year contract with a mutual option for 2008.

BTW Tsao signed a contract for both an MLB or a Minor League assignment so he probably will be someone who Jon likes to consider being part of the grab bag for the bullpen later on in the season.

2007-02-06 08:34:24
17.   Marty
I think Saito has as one-year deal too, right?
2007-02-06 08:36:35
18.   Benaiah
Here is the list of players with 20 saves and lower ERA in as many innings pitched as Saito last year: .

That is really sneaky though, because Saito has more innings pitched than any closer(tied with J.J Putz at 78.1). Gagne's 82.2 is amazing by the way.

Here are the closers with 20 saves and a lower ERA: K-Rod, B.J. Ryan, Papelbon,
Rivera and Joe Nathan. No one in the NL had a lower ERA with even 10 saves.

Until that is demonstrated as a fluke, Sammy is the closer!

2007-02-06 09:02:16
19.   underdog
Y'all can ask Grady what he thinks the opening day roster will be when he comes in for a homespun chat on Dodgers.com today at 2pm.
2007-02-06 09:14:50
20.   Vishal
[13] i'm not a fan of kipling but i like the phrase.
2007-02-06 09:17:07
21.   underdog
Rarely shall Shania Twain meet her mark. Or vice versa.

Okay, I really need to go to work.

2007-02-06 09:17:12
22.   scareduck
The actual link to the Blue Notes story:

http://sportsblogs.latimes.com/sports_baseball_dodgers/2007/02/talking_with_lo_1.html

2007-02-06 09:26:07
23.   kinbote
my sleeper picks to make the opening day 25 are seanez & bigbie.

seanez could prove to be a safer bet as a one-inning middle reliever than tomko or dessens.

bigbie, healthy, could show some power in spring training and tempt the dodgers to carry him as part of an outfield rotation.

i may be in the minority, but i don't see players like laroche, miller, & meloan having any realistic chance of breaking camp with the big club.

2007-02-06 09:39:29
24.   Benaiah
23 - I think they have a chance, but it involves spectacular performance coupled with trades or injuries. Miller and Meloan especially have a chance, because the bullpen is never set in stone. If they throw some great innings and Ned gets rid of some of the detritus ahead of them, they could play their way onto the team for sure.
2007-02-06 09:44:59
25.   Bumsrap
Kippling when saying "Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet" was predicting that Japanese players would ever play in MLB or was it that India would never play soccer.
2007-02-06 09:51:53
26.   Bob Timmermann
25
Gee, I always thought that line was from the song "Buttons and Bows."
2007-02-06 10:07:02
27.   Jon Weisman
Anyone we know?

http://guomania.blogspot.com/

2007-02-06 10:10:54
28.   Humma Kavula
25 One of my favorite (maybe my only favorite) Frank DeFord lines is "East is East and West is West and never the twain shall meet, except in the NBA All-Star Game."
2007-02-06 10:13:28
29.   kinbote
"Alfredo Griffin" on True Blue L.A. made an interesting point questioning the wisdom of carrying a back-up shortstop [i.e. martinez]. considering furcal plays almost every inning, and assuming betemit could play there in a pinch, could we get away without ramon martinez?

if so, that would open up our bench to more offensive possibilities . . .

2007-02-06 10:14:57
30.   D4P
Anyone we know?

Er, anyone we gnow?

2007-02-06 10:16:02
31.   Greg Brock
From Tom Verducci:

The news isn't about to get better for Selig any time soon. Bonds told the Giants this winter, through his agent, that he has no plans to retire—not after this season and probably not after next season, either.

2007-02-06 10:25:31
32.   Benaiah
31 - Ugh. I am hoping that Bonds goes to prison or suffers a career ending injury at this point. The asterisk on his record aside, why go through all the scrutiny and debate? No team in baseball could sign him besides the Giants, and even they seemed reluctant. As a Dodger fan I am a little too biased, but it is a PR nightmare for any team. Just go away Barry!
2007-02-06 10:31:58
33.   Greg Brock
Ugh, Bob posted that at The Griddle. Sorry, Bob.
2007-02-06 10:33:38
34.   D4P
32
I'm torn on Barry. On one hand, I don't really want him breaking Aaron's record. On the other hand, I like the idea of Big Baseball having to actually accept the consequences of ignoring the steroid problem for so long because they were making big bucks.
2007-02-06 10:36:03
35.   Bob Timmermann
33
Just adding it to my long bill of indictments against your character....
2007-02-06 10:37:17
36.   Greg Brock
35 I know...
2007-02-06 10:40:15
37.   D4P
You'd think a history teacher wouldn't be doomed to make the same mistakes...
2007-02-06 10:41:28
38.   Greg Brock
Hey, I can't be scrolling around the tubes all day. I've got little snippets of time to chime in and out! I'm sorry!
2007-02-06 10:41:50
39.   CanuckDodger
Jon, thanks for the heads up on the Logan White interview.

As everybody knows, I am practically a Logan White groupie. But I have to be honest and confess that sometimes White says things that really disappoint me. For instance, in the new interview he is asked if there has been somebody he didn't think was good enough that turned out to be a quality player. White says that the biggest "miss" of his career was Fernando Vina, whom (in his first year as a scout) he allowed other scouts to talk him out of liking even though he initially liked him. I really hated reading that. First of all, note that he is not admitting to being wrong about a player. He is actually paying himself a compliment, as he says he was right about Vina and other scouts were wrong, and his only mistake was in not trusting his own opinion and letting other scouts' opinions influence him. That was a pretty arrogant response to a question that was asking him to admit some fault in PLAYER EVALUATION at least once in his career, not fault in the sense of not trusting himself enough. But the most fundamental problem with White's answer is that it is just factually incorrect. White has made a much bigger "miss" in terms of underestimating a player, especially considering that he didn't even admit to underestimating Vina at all.

On July 15, 2005, the San Diego Union-Tribune had an article that said the following: "General Manager Kevin Towers griped a few years ago that he allowed a scout, Logan White, now a well-regarded scouting director for the well-regarded Dodgers, to talk him out of drafting (Javier) Vazquez..." So, let me get this straight: asked to admit to one mistake in player evaluation in his whole career, White brings up Vina -- whom White carefully notes he was NOT wrong about, but other scouts were -- and says nothing about completely dropping the ball on a player who turned out to have a much bigger impact in the majors than Fernando Vina? A big enough mistake that White's GM at the time, Towers, was still "griping" about it nearly a decade later? Has White forgotten about this, or is he just too embarrassed to want to admit to it? White has surely done enough in his career to make up for that, so he really shouldn't try to conceal that he not only seriously underestimated a player, but his error had a direct, adverse impact on the team that employed him as a scout.

2007-02-06 10:49:08
40.   Daniel Zappala
I'm a child of the 80's new wave movement. When I hear "East is east, west is west", I think of "The Gap" by the Thompson Twins.
2007-02-06 10:59:25
41.   D4P
Speaking of twins, are there any among your 16...?
2007-02-06 11:01:08
42.   Steve
How does the psychologist have time for mark hendrickson after he makes time for all the people who think mark hendrickson can pitch?
2007-02-06 11:03:47
43.   Daniel Zappala
41 No way, that would be cutting corners.
2007-02-06 11:06:16
44.   D4P
42
Does he no longer merit capital letters...?

43
Good point. The "creative" process is much of the fun...

2007-02-06 11:13:15
45.   Steve
Capital punishment maybe
2007-02-06 11:15:21
46.   D4P
And belittlement
2007-02-06 11:17:50
47.   bhsportsguy
39 I'm not going to dispute Kevin Towers recollection but to put into context, The Expos picked Vazquez in the 5th round (140th overall) of the 1994 draft. The Padres drafted and signed such immortals as Dustin Hermanson, Heath Murray, Gordon Amerson, and Eric Newman prior to Vazquez being picked by the Expos (To be fair they did draft a 3B out of Carlsbad High School in the 2nd round but failed to sign him, he went on to be the 3rd pick overall in the 1998 draft, any guesses).

I didn't much of pattern to indicate what if any influences Logan White had over this draft, they drafted both college and high school pitchers prior to Vazquez going in the middle of the 5th round. All I can say is that White must have protested pretty strongly because Towers certainly had 3 picks (3rd, 4th and 5th) to pick him before he was gone.

Who was that 3B, Troy Glaus, imagine if he was there, no Ken Caminiti, no Sean Burroughs, we'll never know.

2007-02-06 11:40:14
48.   Xeifrank
27. Don't know him, but the guy does some great work! :)
vr, Xei
2007-02-06 11:48:55
49.   kinbote
39--were brian pilkington, mike nixon, or jordan pratt drafted during the logan white regime? if so, they qualify as player evaluation misjudgments . . .
2007-02-06 12:12:48
50.   Benaiah
49 - I think that misjudging a player and not drafting him is far more damaging than misjudging a player and drafting him. This sounds backwards, but most prospects don't pan out, so missing the ones that do is worse than cases where you simply succumbed to gravity. If the Mariners would have drafted Driefort over ARod, the pain wouldn't be paying Driefort, it would be watching the Dodgers wreck havoc with the best offensive SS of all time.

On a major league level the opposite is true. The contracts are so much bigger and the track record is so much more established, that success is far more likely. Thus, bad Free Agent contracts are far worse than missing out on signing Free Agents.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-02-06 12:15:10
51.   D4P
In case anyone was wondering whether olive oil congeals when the temperature gets low enough, I found out today that the answer is "Yes".
2007-02-06 12:20:25
52.   Bob Timmermann
Olive oils freeze around 39 degrees, but it varies depending upon the type of oil and how it is processed.

Your olive oil should be fine once it's thawed out.

2007-02-06 12:20:33
53.   CanuckDodger
49 -- Pilkington was drafted in the year before White took over the Dodgers' drafts.

White bears responsibility for his draft CHOICES, but most of his choices on draft day are inevitably going to be based on his scouts' evaluations, not his own personal evaluations. No scouting director has the time to look at every available player in the draft. I am sure White has seen anybody he takes in the first couple rounds, but after that, who knows. I do know he personally "discovered" Matt Kemp in 2003 and took him in the 6th round.

And while 2002 3rd rounder Nixon was a definite bust, I don't think that 2003 5th rounder Jordan Pratt was misevaluated, or is beyond hope yet. You aren't going to get a sure thing in the 5th round, and Pratt was a hard-throwing high schooler who was very raw when he was drafted. The Dodgers surely had no illusions about how raw he was. Pratt still throws very hard -- reaching 97 MPH -- but control and the art of pitching are things he has either not learned or they are coming along slowly. I think Pratt at this point looks like Zach Hammes before this year, whom everybody, including me, wrote off as a bust. In 2006 Hammes finally turned into a legitimate prospect four years after he was drafted as a hard-throwing but raw high school hurler. Pratt could be on the verge of the same transformation, and on the same timetable as Hammes -- four years after he was drafted.

2007-02-06 12:23:15
54.   D4P
Your olive oil should be fine once it's thawed out.

Phew. But it may take a while.

2007-02-06 12:29:11
55.   bhsportsguy
53 All I can add is that while Nixon didn't pan out, the other 6 out of his first 7 picks in the 2002 draft are on the 2007 40-man roster, Loney, Greg Miller, Zach Hammes, Broxton, Delwyn Young and Mike Megrew.

Both Kemp and 30+ rounds later, Andy LaRoche, were drafted after Pratt in the 2003 draft.

2007-02-06 12:31:40
56.   regfairfield
Is Logan White so awesome that we have to complain he missed with a fifth round pick?
2007-02-06 12:36:39
57.   Bob Timmermann
54
http://www.oliveoilsource.com

will answer all of your olive oil chemistry questions!

2007-02-06 12:38:14
58.   Bob Timmermann
I get all my olive oil from Genco Olive Oil Company.
2007-02-06 12:44:48
59.   D4P
57
Thanks, Mr. Polymath.

Our olive oil (the Whole Foods 365 brand) currently looks like that photo in the middle of the page. Kinda like split-pea soup.

2007-02-06 12:46:20
60.   Bob Timmermann
Split pea soup is the Frank Robinson of soups.
2007-02-06 12:48:35
61.   D4P
I love split-pea soup, but I don't eat it because it gives me really bad breath.
2007-02-06 12:52:25
62.   Greg Brock
Bob will not be heading out to the fabulous Pea Soup Andersen's in Buellton. That's some good split pea soup. Unfortunate name, good taste.
2007-02-06 12:52:40
63.   Jon Weisman
60 - For any specific reason, or just a feeling kind of thing. I like a good split pea soup.
2007-02-06 13:09:12
64.   Benaiah
60 - I will go with ketchup soup as the Manager Robinson of soups, with a creamy seafood bisque being the Player Robinson of soups.
2007-02-06 13:11:32
65.   Marty
I love split pea soup, but not Anderson's. It's not bad, but not great IMO.
2007-02-06 13:12:11
66.   D4P
64
I think Bob was referring mostly to the Person Robinson of soups
2007-02-06 13:19:01
67.   ToyCannon
Where can you get the best stew in LA?
2007-02-06 13:30:04
68.   Jon Weisman
Carl Weathers likes a good stew.
2007-02-06 13:31:01
69.   D4P
"Will give acting lessons for stew"
2007-02-06 13:32:23
70.   Benaiah
68 - Does your wife get an employee meal, or just a discount?
2007-02-06 13:46:28
71.   Greg Brock
Whoa, whoa, whoa. There's still plenty of meat on that bone. Now you take this home, throw it in a pot, add some broth, a potato. Baby, you've got a stew going.

Best guest star ever.

2007-02-06 13:47:18
72.   Greg Brock
And..."Let me tell you a little story about acting. I was doing this Showtime movie—Hot Ice with Anne Archer—never once touched my per diem. I'd go to Craft Service, get some raw veggies, bacon, Cup-A-Soup— Baby, I got a stew going."
2007-02-06 13:47:30
73.   D4P
Did Henry Winkler count as a "guest star"...?
2007-02-06 13:51:05
74.   Sam DC
If Carl Weathers would run for Governor of some state we could have three future Governors in the cast of Predator.

Meanwhile, any other movies with two?

2007-02-06 13:53:35
75.   Penarol1916
Anybody else read Gregg Easterbrook losing his mind today on ESPN.com? I didn't realize that football was on the verge of taking over the world.
2007-02-06 13:55:13
76.   Sam DC
And while we're bouncing around, here's a headline up now at cnn.com: "Kangaroo-ish animal caught in subdivision."

I didn't click the link. But do we really live in a world in which animals are "ish" -- I mean, someone knows just exactly what kind of animal was caught.

Don't we deserve better?

2007-02-06 13:55:59
77.   Benaiah
I just looked at some Hardballtimes team stats and saw some cool stuff. The Dodgers were 4th in Runs and Run Prevention in the NL last year, for the 2nd Best run prevention. The Dodgers had the lowest FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching Statistic) in the league last year on the basis of the lowest LD% (18%) and the highest GB% (47%) despite being slightly below average in Strikeouts. The Dodgers allowed the fewest home runs per game in Baseball last year, despite playing in a park that is marginally homer friendly.

We were a pretty good team last year. Hopefully our pitching will be even better this year (historically good is my hope), but last year was nothing to sneeze at.

2007-02-06 13:58:27
78.   Benaiah
Now wait a minute. This is just purely a social call. You know, just two adults getting a stew on, man.
2007-02-06 14:00:21
79.   Sam DC
Anything you say, Guvner.
2007-02-06 14:02:13
80.   Jon Weisman
And while looking at Sam's link, I saw that Snickers has shelved their kissing commercial.

Meanwhile, Defamer has been casting the Astronauts Love Triangle movie.

2007-02-06 14:03:52
81.   Benaiah
I got bumped from that flight. Apparently, they give you $300 if you get bumped. It's this crazy loophole in the system that the wrong guy discovered. Guess where I won't be going?
2007-02-06 14:11:30
82.   Xeifrank
Dodgers handle the Giants pretty handily at DodgerSims. http://dodgersims.blogspot.com
vr, Xei
2007-02-06 14:11:55
83.   Sam DC
I can't think of any other actor governors, let alone films with multiple future governors.

Gary Coleman and Mary Cary both tried, of course, but neither was elected and I don't think they were ever in any films together.

2007-02-06 14:15:29
84.   Benaiah
83 - Reagan obviously.
2007-02-06 14:19:02
85.   Sam DC
84: Oh sorry, I meant in addition to him but you're right I certainly didn't say that.

But did he ever appear in a movie with another future Governor or is Predator unique.

I mean, of course Predator is unique in a whole bunch of ways, but I'm thinking about just this particular one right now.

2007-02-06 14:20:02
86.   Benaiah
84 - Sorry, that sounded mean. By obviously, I meant that Reagan was who you were overlooking. I wanted to type more, but I expected Bob would beat me if I did.

What I find interesting is, T3 was released during the guvernator's run and Arnold has released two more movies since he has been in office! How can you vote for someone who is killing people willy-nilly on the big screen (not to mention a semi-nude scene)?

2007-02-06 14:21:30
87.   Sam DC
And gee on Reagan's birthday no less.

My Fact of the Day email also claims its Babe Ruth's, Bob Marley's, and Axl Rose's birthday.

2007-02-06 14:22:35
88.   Sam DC
86: I didn't at all think you sounded mean or short.

And 87 was written before seeing 86 and was not a response.

2007-02-06 14:22:56
89.   Benaiah
According to a 2005 poll by the Discovery Channel and AOL, Reagan is the greatest American ever. So, um there you go.
2007-02-06 14:29:02
90.   D4P
Reagan is the greatest American ever

Course, there's variation in the degree to which Americans consider "American" to be a compliment

2007-02-06 14:31:44
91.   Sam DC
Allright let's nip this dangerous topic in the bud right now and move on to something safe. Back to Mary Carey it is!
2007-02-06 14:32:19
92.   kinbote
grady little just commented on the possibility of furcal's batting 3rd in today's chat:

"You know, back in the winter when I made mention of that it was before we signed Luis Gonzalez and with his addition, I think that kind of inks in Nomar hitting third, Kent fourth and then Luis. The one and two hole, in whichever order they hit, those guys will create a lot of excitement."

2007-02-06 14:32:49
93.   D4P
In other words, for some, "greatest American" may mean something different from "greatest human being to have also been an American"
2007-02-06 14:35:21
94.   D4P
Nomar hitting third, Kent fourth and then Luis

Dodger production from the #5 spot in 2006:

.311/.385/.537/.921

Good luck, LuGo

2007-02-06 14:36:28
95.   Greg Brock
80 Today brought us diaper wearing murderous astronauts, Ted Haggard out of gay rehab, stew-chat, Todd Bozeman shaking a woman over a ham sandwich, and a ballot initiative in Washington that would force married couples to have children.

February 6th, 2007...Greatest day ever?

2007-02-06 14:37:52
96.   Benaiah
I say we discuss the decline of cinema due to the use of digital projection instead of film projection.

http://www.nypress.com/print.cfm?content_id=243

2007-02-06 14:42:13
97.   Sam DC
So, the Post had a space blogger in for a chat about the Astronaut mess. I like this q&a for its dry and understated tone.

Washington, D.C.: I heard Nowak was to return to the shuttle in March. Is this now on hold?

Michael Cabbage: Nowak was not scheduled to fly on the Shuttle in March. She was, however, planning to be a "capcom," for the next flight. A capcom is an astronaut at Mission Control in Houston who talks to the crew in orbit. I would be very surprised if she is still the capcom for the next mission.

Yes, Michael, I too would be surprised if she were to serve as capcom for the next shuttle mission.

(at washingtonpost.com)

2007-02-06 14:43:51
98.   kinbote
well, the chat's over and the most interesting comments regarded the batting order. i've been trying to interpret this passage for a while now:

"We don't want either one of them [furcal & pierre] to get too much out of character just because of where they're hitting in the order, like the No. 2 hitter taking too many pitches so the leadoff guy can steal bases."

does this mean pierre may bat 2nd but not be pressured into taking pitches? or does it mean furcal will bat 2nd and be aggressive early in the count?

the other possibly telling line was this:

"Last fall, Billingsley and Hendrickson were outstanding coming out of the bullpen and neither one of them had much experience either."

every time little uses "billingsley" and "bullpen" in the same sentence, i start to wonder . . .

2007-02-06 14:45:34
99.   regfairfield
LuGo will now only be referred to as Luis Gonzalez because nicknames are for friends, and Luis Gonzalez is no friend of mine.
2007-02-06 14:47:44
100.   Sushirabbit
Thanks Sam. Must... resist....

Jon, in case you didn't see the email, no hurry.

So when can we reasonably expect Yhency to return? I've been thinking about whether or not Saito can repeat last year.

DT, and it's notions has been on my mind alot lately. On the subject of hazardous sports, I've been trying to come up with why it's ever OK to do something inherently risky. For instance, I myself am very happy in a race car, even knowing I could die at any moment (possibly from no fault of my own (mechanical) as opposed to my own stupidity). I think I feel most alive then, sort of like Burt Munro saying he lives more in 5 minutes than most in a lifetime. If I had my life to live over, the one thing that I'd do differently is commit ealier and harder to making a living at it. And I envy the people that can do that young, whether they succeed or fail. All this comes from the football discussion and just now reading Logan White. Sort of the "do what you love thing, 'cause you could get hit by a car tomorrow" philosophy. Anyway, I appreciate everyone's viewpoints.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-02-06 14:51:36
101.   D4P
LuGo will now only be referred to as Luis Gonzalez because nicknames are for friends, and Luis Gonzalez is no friend of mine

I felt exactly the same way about "Gonzo", an affectionate nickname and the name of a beloved character in film/television.

However, most folks around here don't get warm and fuzzy at the mention of "LuGo", and I feel comfortable using it.

2007-02-06 15:15:14
102.   bhsportsguy
98 Just the stats, Kuo and Billingsley, 5 and 16 MLB career starts, Combined, Tomko, Hendrickson and Dessens have well over 500 career starts. I'm not saying they are great starts, I'm just saying that's a lot of experience that has a guaranteed check from the Dodgers this year.
2007-02-06 15:45:15
103.   Steve
I wouldn't have thought that Grittle was a big believer in psychology, but there you go.
2007-02-06 16:18:55
104.   Greg Brock
Well, now that I've read everything available on the subject, I can freely say that I am in love with Lisa Nowack, diaper wearing murderous astronaut.

Space Cadet, I pledge my heart to thee.

2007-02-06 16:40:49
105.   Greg Brock
RIP, Lew Burdette. For more information, head over to The Griddle in about ten minutes.
2007-02-06 16:56:10
106.   kinbote
little also said he had no plans to play nomar at 3b, but i suspect we already knew that . . .
2007-02-06 17:06:39
107.   Andrew Shimmin
Link to the Grady chat, for those who missed it. (Tinyurl is down for everyone, not just me, right?)

http://w3t.org/c/grittle

2007-02-06 17:15:09
108.   Jim Hitchcock
Olive oils freeze around 39 degrees...

Aha! That explains the crunchy pizza in Northern Nevada.

2007-02-06 17:24:56
109.   Disabled List
74 If Carl Weathers would run for Governor of some state we could have three future Governors in the cast of Predator.

Meanwhile, any other movies with two?

The Running Man, although it was the same two future governors. As for a third future governor from that movie, I'm gonna go with either Professor Toru Tanaka or Dweezil Zappa.

2007-02-06 17:39:00
110.   StolenMonkey86
94 - LuGo

Now isn't that a little bit harsh? Either way, I'll have it stuck in my head all season, but still:

Dodgers 5-hitter slugging percentage in 2006: .537

Julio Lugo's Dodgers OPS: .545

2007-02-06 17:57:01
111.   Andrew Shimmin
LuGo's 2006 OPS+: 97
Lugo's 2006 OPS+: 94
2007-02-06 18:00:17
112.   Sam DC
109: Excellent stuff! Just give me a couple of minutes to get DT for Dweezil up on Facebook.
2007-02-06 18:12:12
113.   Greg Brock
112 I guess I'm the last human left who hasn't been to myspace or doesn't know what a facebook is. In my day, if a girl was ugly, we might say she got hit with a facebook, but I don't think it's the same thing.
2007-02-06 18:18:19
114.   Andrew Shimmin
By the way, the kangaroo-ish animal was a wallaby. Its name is Walter.
2007-02-06 18:19:29
115.   Andrew Shimmin
Forgot the link:

http://w3t.org/c/wallaby

2007-02-06 18:21:00
116.   Sam DC
Thanks.

I too have never been to facebook.

I was just passing as a facebooker.

2007-02-06 18:23:44
117.   Greg Brock
I was just passing as a facebooker.

If it wasn't for "Diaper wearing murderous astronaut" and "Hatchet throwing boxer" Sam would have the unique quote of the day. Well, after "Todd Bozeman ham sandwich rampage."

2007-02-06 18:36:03
118.   Disabled List
I was at a Cal-CSUN basketball game years ago when Todd Bozeman threw a punch at a security guard walking behind the Bears' bench in the middle of the game.

Bozeman and Bobby Knight should go out for beers some time.

2007-02-06 18:42:29
119.   Bob Timmermann
I went to a UCLA-CSUN basketball game once.

CSUN won.

UCLA fans were ready to throw punches at Steve Lavin.

2007-02-06 18:45:14
120.   Disabled List
119 I watched that game at the Chili's in Northridge. There was much celebrating.
2007-02-06 18:45:20
121.   Greg Brock
119 Wow, was it tough at the end...

My favorite was losing to Athletes in Action or the EA sports team or whatever intramural NBA reject squad we lost to. That was awesome!

2007-02-06 18:48:15
122.   D4P
If I were to throw a punch at a coach, it would probably be a fruit punch. That stuff leaves tough stains!
2007-02-06 18:56:16
123.   King of the Hobos
Sorry if it's already been mentioned, but Joe Mays is now a Dodger for some reason.
2007-02-06 19:11:20
124.   Bob Timmermann
123

You should be sorry you mentioned that.

Joe Mays! The operative word is "ugh".

2007-02-06 19:20:45
125.   Andrew Shimmin
PECOTA didn't bother projecting Mays, but Zips has him posting a sweet sub-six ERA.
2007-02-06 19:46:57
126.   Icaros
The Dodgers should bust Alston's 24 out of retirement and give it to Mays when they go up to the Phone Booth this season.

Of course, if Mays is still on the team when that happens, I won't be alive to see it.

2007-02-06 19:56:01
127.   Bob Timmermann
126
Best...
Idea...
Ever...
2007-02-06 19:56:52
128.   trainwreck
Colletti is cornering the market on guys you forgot existed.
2007-02-06 19:59:15
129.   Bob Timmermann
Given time, the Dodgers will sign Lou Burdette, Steve Barber, and Max Lanier.

I was shocked to see that Damian Jackson was an NRI.

2007-02-06 20:06:46
130.   Greg Brock
Seeing the detritus that washes up on MLB rosters is one of the fun things about Spring Training.
2007-02-06 20:29:12
131.   underdog
I got excited when I saw the headline on Yahoo sports that said "Dodgers sign Mays" - we could really use more OF depth. Oh well.

Maybe Joe Mays was signed to provide pitching depth in the minors? I really don't see starting pitching being a major area of need though.

2007-02-06 20:30:40
132.   D4P
Maybe Joe Mays was signed to provide pitching depth in the minors?

Rotoworld said he'd be in the starting rotation at AAA.

2007-02-06 20:31:47
133.   underdog
Damn, I'm always late on these postings.

Btw, just to make it official - Letters from Iwo Jima is indeed much, much better than Flags of Our Fathers. In case you're keeping score at home. (But each worth seeing, close together.)

2007-02-06 20:33:52
134.   Icaros
Mays is this year's 2005 Pat Mahomes!
2007-02-06 20:38:58
135.   Steve
134 -- Mark Hend(E)rickson works for me.
2007-02-06 20:45:02
136.   Jon Weisman
New post up top.

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