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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
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Will Roster Thoughts Ever End?
2007-04-09 07:40
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Things sure turned around for Luis Gonzalez this weekend, didn't they? Not only did he pound the ball, but after he dropped Barry Bonds' fly ball in the eighth inning Friday, the Giants did not hit a single fly to Gonzalez in the 13 innings he spent in left field Saturday and Sunday.

With Gonzalez and Juan Pierre secure as ever in the outfield and Matt Kemp hitting .462 after one week and starting today, I still wonder when Andre Ethier will play - or if he will even stay on the roster given the current infatuation with Wilson Valdez. But as Dodger Thoughts commenter Bhsportsguy points out:

After (today), there is only one LH starter scheduled in the next 9 games, David Wells, who is slotted to start Friday night for the Padres (they could skip him but that seems unlikely based on his first outing of the year). Other than that start, the Dodgers will face two righthanders for the Rockies after (Jeff) Francis, two tough righthanders in (Jake) Peavy and (Chris) Young for the Padres over the weekend, two righthanders in Arizona next week as well as (Aaron) Cook and (Josh) Fogg for the Rockies in Denver.

That bodes well for Ethier, but the pressure will be on him Tuesday night.

Meanwhile, Valdez is this year's Cody Ross, who drove in seven runs in one April 2006 game. He has made unexpected spectacular contributions, but that doesn't expand the roster any. Potentially, after Furcal returns, we will see Valdez in a platoon with Wilson Betemit, and the Dodgers dropping Kemp or Ethier down to the minors. But I still can't quite believe it.

A few people (such as Tony Jackson of the Daily News) are noticing that Ramon Martinez is every bit the 1 for 15 with great fielding that Betemit is - and less, since he doesn't have four walks. Dodger manager Grady Little is riding Martinez in the short term, but Betemit will be back.

Wrote Jackson:

For now, the Dodgers remain committed to the switch-hitting Betemit as their everyday third baseman - even though Little said Martinez will start there again in today's home opener.

The fact that Betemit has drawn four walks - including a key one with the bases loaded in the fourth inning Saturday to bring in the tying run in a game the Dodgers went on to win - is an indication Betemit is having decent at-bats. Betemit also has hit several balls hard, which indicates that he isn't in a full-blown slump.

"I don't think it's a slump," Betemit said. "I only have 15 at-bats. I'm trying to make adjustments every day, just going up there and trying to have the best at-bats I can."

He also has played dramatically improved defense, not committing an error in any of the first five games while playing one of the most difficult positions.

"He is just struggling to get hits," Little said. "He has played outstanding defense for us, but he is just struggling to find holes. It will come. He just needs to be better."

Betemit is out of options just like Valdez, so he isn't going anywhere once Rafael Furcal returns from the disabled list. Given that the Dodgers were willing to send James Loney down, that could mean a temporary demotion for Ethier or Kemp until the next, inevitable Dodger injury. Even with Tony Abreu and Martinez as backups, the Dodgers may not be willing to risk losing Valdez, who is destined to be known as "the kind of player championship teams have in their organization."

Up to now, I have never thought Valdez would be on a Dodger team with healthy middle infielders, but I may have to chalk another one up in the Wrong column.

On the other hand, the Dodgers survived the Larry Bigbie out clause and managed to keep him in the minor leagues, so maybe they'll sneak Valdez through.

In other news and notes:

  • In this feature on Jason Schmidt, Steve Henson of the Times reminds us why there are worse things in the world than being a hypochondriac:

    "For two to three years I was fearful," he said. "Every time I'd get sick, I thought I had cancer. I never looked at it from a realistic point of view. I could have stubbed my toe and thought I had cancer."

    The worries had a rational basis. His mother, Vicki, died of brain cancer at 53 about six months after she watched her son pitch against the Angels in the 2002 World Series. Several other of Schmidt's relatives have had the disease.

    After the 2003 season — during which he posted a healthy 17-5 record and 2.34 earned-run average — he was so distraught over headaches and stomach pain that he traveled from his home near Kelso, Wash., to Arizona for tests to rule out the Big C.

    "He had legitimate symptoms, and because of what he had gone through with his mom, we wanted him to take the right tests and put his mind at ease," said Stan Conte, the Giants' trainer at the time and now the Dodgers' trainer.

    Schmidt eventually worked through his grief and accompanying qualms by contributing money to brain cancer research and reaching out to people suffering from the disease, and to their families. ...

  • Ex-Dodger phenom Edwin Jackson makes his first start of the year for Tampa Bay tonight. Like Brett Tomko, the Dodgers' starter Tuesday, Jackson hasn't pitched competitively since Spring Training.

    The Rays' fifth starter expects to have to work out some kinks as he makes his season debut tonight. He threw a simulated game Friday afternoon and admitted it "definitely felt weird" after so much idle time.

    Manager Joe Maddon hopes Jackson is able to regain the spring form (four earned runs in 20 2/3 innings) that won him the final rotation spot, but knows it won't be easy.

    "I'm concerned that he's going to be a little bit rusty, but by the same token I'm going to consider that he may be rusty - I'm not going to judge too harshly," Maddon said. "We've just got to get him back into the flow. He had pitched so well in spring training, and that last outing against the Red Sox was very, very good."

    Jackson's only start in the majors last season came at Texas, when he allowed five runs in seven innings but retired the final 11 batters he faced. If nothing else, that outing will provide him a frame of reference for the stadium he'll be working in tonight.

  • Nice piece by Rich Lederer on Baseball Analysts about John Herbold, who won 938 games as a high school and college baseball coach in Southern California.

  • Eric Gagne will return to the major leagues with Texas pitching in non-save situations, according to the Dallas Morning News (via David Pinto of Baseball Musings). As Pinto correctly points out, "Of course, as we saw in last night's Texas game, there can be plenty of pressure earlier than the 9th inning. Just because the Rangers are going to bring him out to start the ninth for a while, there's no reason they can't use him with the game on the line in the seventh."

  • Even if he weren't a Stanford grad, I'd be recommending this interview with ex-major leaguer David McCarty posted at Baseball Prospectus. McCarty talks about the value of not being rushed to the big leagues, not being labeled, looking for larger sample sizes, Moneyball, defense and more.

  • Later this morning, I hopefully will have my second installment on the National League West at Fungoes, the new blog at SI.com.

    Update: Here it is:

    Last in the alphabet but first in salary among 2006-07 free agents, Barry Zito entered the sixth inning of his second start as a San Francisco Giant with a 3.60 ERA.

    Three of the next four batters hit grounders on the infield. The fifth batter of the inning was a major leaguer whose roster status is so tenuous that every game might be his last. Then came a journeyman who isn't even the most famous major leaguer with his own name.

    But by the time the inning was over, the Los Angeles Dodgers had carved up the $18 million-a-year Zito much the same way area code surgeons once carved up Los Angeles -- leaving an enormous chunk of 8.18 as his ERA.

    Trailing only 2-1, Zito allowed infield singles by Jeff Kent and Matt Kemp to sandwich a clean shot to left-center by Luis Gonzalez. Wilson Valdez (career OPS entering the game of .548) tripled, and infielder Ramon Martinez, known by fans of both Arrested Development and the former Dodgers pitcher Ramon Martinez as Lucille II, hit a sacrifice fly. ...

    Oh - and here's to a great home opener for everyone!

    Gameday

    CBSSportsline.com

    The following quote appeared on my baseball page-a-day calendar today, from Dave Barry.

    "If a woman has to choose between catching a fly ball and saving an infant's life, she will choose to save the infant's life without even considering if there is a man on base."

  • Comments (605)
    Show/Hide Comments 1-50
    2007-04-09 08:01:45
    1.   weatherman
    We are 4-2 and just swept the Giants. So why am I so frustrated?
    2007-04-09 08:05:18
    2.   Jon Weisman
    I don't know. I'm happy.
    2007-04-09 08:15:47
    3.   ishXdavid
    If I'm not mistaken, I saw Kemp lace an outside breaking pitch to left field for a hard-hit single in his last at-bat yesterday. I would've liked to see him take the pitch opposite field, but it's a lot better than the flailing he was doing last year. I know it might've only been one pitch and one at-bat, but along with his hitting Kemp's played an exceptional right-field cutting off balls that a less athletic outfielder might've let get into the cavernous gap at the phonebooth and also utilizing his strong arm to hold runners. It might also be that alongside Pierre and Gonzo, Kemp looks like Willie Mays out in the field with a Mondesi arm? Either way, if Kemp announced his potential last year I hope this year he's making a statement that he's here to stay.
    2007-04-09 08:38:04
    4.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
    I'm also happy as a clam. The roster stuff will hopefully work itself out; for now, I'm just happy we're 4-2 without our best everyday regular in the lineup. Yes, if we lose a few games due to Gonzo that keep us out of the playoffs, I'll be unhappy, but I'll only fret about that if I have to.

    WWSH

    2007-04-09 08:41:08
    5.   ToyCannon
    I would think Ned could swing a small deal to KC with either Ramon or Wilson involved. They could use a solid backup SS as they go with the Pena kid.
    2007-04-09 08:43:44
    6.   ToyCannon
    We played the Giants and the Diamondbacks played the Nationals. Nothing to be proud of yet other then the shellacking we gave Zito.
    2007-04-09 08:43:53
    7.   weatherman
    Perhaps it is the embarrassment of riches we seem to have. There are so many great young guys on the team, any one of whom could take off and have a great career. I do not want to lose another Vlad or Pedro. At the same time, I feel it is inevitable. I do not envy Mr. Coletti and the decisions with which he is faced. Clearly something has got to give.
    2007-04-09 08:44:17
    8.   Marty
    What's not to like about 4-2 on the road?

    Wow, the Phillies and Astros are off to 1-5 starts.

    2007-04-09 08:53:29
    9.   DXMachina
    I keep having to remind myself that this is the very same Wilson Valdez who hit .209/.250/.291 in 182 major league at bats prior to this season.

    4-2 on the road after losing the first two games of the season is fine by me.

    2007-04-09 08:55:46
    10.   Bob Timmermann
    I am similar to Jason Schmidt when it comes to injuries or illnesses.
    2007-04-09 09:00:15
    11.   regfairfield
    9 On that note, Wilson Valdez's career minor league stats: .283/.330/.355. This is entirely different from Cody Ross who had the potential to be a useful bench player. Every organization has multiple guys that can do exactly what Wilson Valdez does. Heck, Tomas Perez is completely worthless, and he can do what Wilson Valdez does.
    2007-04-09 09:00:20
    12.   FirstMohican
    1 - Zero chance of rain all day today. What's the problem???

    I'm happy. I'll take 4-2 w/ one of the 2 losses coming against Ben Sheets. Too bad I've only been available to watch the first two games.

    Was just on the Dodgers.com site and the "News" ticker said "Santana nearly unhittable".

    2007-04-09 09:07:33
    13.   still bevens
    5 Problem is he's out of options, and we have to put him on the waiver wire no matter what. Someone is going to get him for free. I would imagine KC wouldnt have much of problem snagging him if they wanted to without giving up anything.

    Also, to the guy wearing a Dodgers polo and buying a 12 pack of beer and a bag of ice at Albertsons at 830 this morning, I salute you, and will see you at the game.

    2007-04-09 09:14:30
    14.   weatherman
    It is this time of year that I sure do wish I lived in Los Angeles.
    2007-04-09 09:21:25
    15.   Jon Weisman
    My SI.com entry is up, with a special treat for some Dodger Thoughts commenters.
    2007-04-09 09:23:42
    16.   Disabled List
    I just wish we had this kind of roster depth in 2005. It would've made a ton of difference.

    And I agree with 14.

    2007-04-09 09:28:40
    17.   Disabled List
    Wow, DT lingo is making the big-time!

    Jon, next time you write something about Matt Kemp, see if you can work in a "Bison" reference.

    2007-04-09 09:30:30
    18.   Bob Timmermann
    Jon can win valuable prizes if he works in a reference to Mike Ramsey.

    But he has to get SI.com to let him call him "the black Mike Ramsey."

    2007-04-09 09:31:36
    19.   Benaiah
    15 - Very nice article Jon. By the way, I am amazed that you manage to write so many quality pieces a week. You are currently writing for SI.com, Dodgerthoughts, Variety, Fungoes, moonlighting at Screenjam and still finding time to do stuff for the Hardballtimes and Baseball Analysts. You are a marvel. If I write an email without three typos I feel like it was a good week.
    2007-04-09 09:31:54
    20.   underdog
    Well, I'm sorry I can't be there in person today, too, but am excited by the prospects of a day game today. Which gives me something to look forward to on what would otherwise be just your usual Monday at work. I'm even happier that I no longer work right next to my boss, so I can watch MLBTV during the day without fear of repercussions. (I can still get my work done, don't you worry!)

    The Schmidt article makes me root even harder for him. Can relate - my stepmom passed away from breast and lung cancer a few years ago and I, too, became entirely cancer-phobic for some time after. Less so now, but it still sticks with you. It's a helluva thing.

    2007-04-09 09:33:19
    21.   underdog
    16 What, Mike Edwards and Jason Grabowski weren't enough roster depth for you? {shudder}
    2007-04-09 09:38:36
    22.   Jon Weisman
    The last two days aside, it's hard to make a case for Wilson Valdez over Mike Edwards.
    2007-04-09 09:39:55
    23.   underdog
    Wow, that's unbelievable. The doubleheader for the Mariners-Indians series at Cleveland today was postponed. Again. A week of snow in April. Crazy. Sounds like they may switch the Indians series at home vs. the Angels to Anaheim.
    2007-04-09 09:40:24
    24.   Jon Weisman
    19 - Well, Hardball Times and Baseball Analysts add up to about five pieces in three years. But thanks.
    2007-04-09 09:41:20
    25.   Jon Weisman
    17 - We'll see ...
    2007-04-09 09:41:29
    26.   underdog
    And there's the Griddle, right on top of it as always. Still, I'm amazed by the weather.

    22 It is - I mean, Edwards showed he could hit from time to time, too, and was also a career minor leaguer. Though Valdez seems to be much more valuable in the field, which is one difference. But yeah... I wish him well wherever he ends up.

    2007-04-09 09:41:35
    27.   JoeyP
    Am I the only one that belives Valdez is just as valuable (or not valuable) as Marlon Anderson?

    Why is a Left Handed pinch hitter (of which we have plenty), that never plays in the field nor can play the positions that Valdez/Ramon Martinez can, considered a lock for a roster spot?

    If the team wants to keep Valdez, just DL/DFA Anderson. He's just as much of a career mediocrity as Valdez/Martinez.

    2007-04-09 09:45:24
    28.   Bob Timmermann
    26
    The first thing I do every morning is check the weather forecast for Cleveland.

    I used to go to the bathroom first, but the weather in Cleveland is now first.

    2007-04-09 09:52:58
    29.   Jon Weisman
    The ban on posts that begin "Am I the only one" or "Is it just me" is poised to begin ...
    2007-04-09 09:53:23
    30.   regfairfield
    27 Marlon Anderson: mediocre guy to have on the bench.

    Wilson Valdez: Has a .685 minor league OPS.

    2007-04-09 09:56:25
    31.   Andrew Shimmin
    When James Brown died, Jon became the hardest working man in show business.

    Curiously, Bob became the Godfather of Soul.

    2007-04-09 09:59:04
    32.   weatherman
    27 Marlon is also cheaper than Ramon.

    31 Get back!

    2007-04-09 10:00:23
    33.   Bob Timmermann
    More Cleveland news on the Griddle!
    2007-04-09 10:00:59
    34.   ToyCannon
    The MLE's for Wilson Valdez are
    236 289 298 586
    His hot start is noted but for a site geared toward statistical analysis I don't see how Wilson Valdez comes close to appoximating the value of Marlon Anderson. A contending team only has room for either Ramon or Wilson. Pick one, it doesn't matter, I'd rather have Wilson because he could be a usefull pinch runner and evidently can play the outfield giving us some versatility in late inning switches.
    2007-04-09 10:03:22
    35.   D4P
    I'd rather have Wilson because he could be a usefull pinch runner and evidently can play the outfield giving us some versatility in late inning switches

    Some teams will pay $44 million for such a player

    2007-04-09 10:14:56
    36.   thinkblue0
    sorry to be off topic but...

    I am now on my brunch break. Today is my first day of student teaching. I was totally freaked out and after first period my master teacher said "you were excellent." phew.

    Let's go Dodgers!

    2007-04-09 10:23:00
    37.   JoeyP
    appoximating the value of Marlon Anderson

    What value does Marlon Anderson have in comparison to Wilson Valdez?

    Defense--I'd give Valdez the edge
    Pinch Running--Valdez
    Versality of positions--Valdez
    Pinch Hitting--Marlon
    Age--Valdez is at least in his prime

    Its no secret that no contending team would want either guy playing everyday. So if were just comparing which player brings more to the bench--I gotta go with Valdez.

    Sure Marlon had 1 amazing september last month, but thats it.

    2007-04-09 10:23:18
    38.   Bob Timmermann
    36
    Good luck. Be sure to turn off your cellphone during class.
    2007-04-09 10:23:32
    39.   JoeyP
    36--how old of kids are you teaching?
    2007-04-09 10:28:19
    41.   Marty
    I didn't understand a word of 40
    2007-04-09 10:28:31
    42.   Terry A
    I suspect the ban on posts that begin "Since I spent the W/E, in the bay area. I went to Sec. 209..." is about to begin, too.
    2007-04-09 10:28:41
    43.   bhsportsguy
    The power of DT, willing to fork over some cash to log in at a nearby Starbucks to review the latest posts and what Jon wrote up for Opening Day.

    Not really off-topic but my pregame reading material for today is the book by Cait Murphy about the 1908 season, the first two chapters, read over some eggs at Shakers (the Fair Oaks location across from Bristol Farms) are very good in establishing the tone of what was certainly one of the great seasons in baseball history.

    So the sun is out, the game time in 2 1/2 hours away and as the song says, It's a beautiful day for a ballgame.

    2007-04-09 10:29:32
    44.   thinkblue0
    39-

    they're doing group work right now...im teaching sophmores. They're actually all pretty good kids...

    2007-04-09 10:31:29
    45.   Bob Timmermann
    43
    Can you stop by my place to make sure I locked the door?
    2007-04-09 10:31:40
    46.   JoeyP
    30--Anderson's minor league #'s-
    .287/.338/.415--.753 OPS

    Anderson's major league #'s:
    .267/.316/.394

    Marlon's proven that he's pretty worthless at the major league level. He's 33 years old. He's not going to improve.

    Valdez, may be a slightly weaker hitter (although Anderson's career OBP of .316 isnt exactly anything to write home about)--but I think Valdez defensive versatility and ability would make him more valuable.

    2007-04-09 10:37:22
    47.   bigcpa
    Amidst all the Dodger outfield talk... it was very depressing surfing Extra Innings this weekend and seeing Werth batting 2nd and Bradley batting 3rd for playoff caliber teams. 27 and 28 yrs old- still cheap, athletic, power to burn. Sad!
    2007-04-09 10:39:18
    48.   Benaiah
    37 - Then again, it isn't like this is a roto fantasy game where all that matters the categories. Anderson is a much better hitter, which is more important than all of those categories put together. Valdez has been surprisingly good, but it is unlikely in the extreme that he is much better than terrible with the bat, leaving him as a all-glove, no stick guy and we already have Lucille II. Sending down Ethier or Kemp, two players who are among the 5-6 best hitters on the team, to keep a hitter who could very well be the worst, is beyond insane.

    People keep mentioning the loss of Cody Ross, well, Ross eventually went to Florida where he posted a .212/.284/.396 line with a 76 OPS+ in 250 ABs last year. The point being, that great 14 ABs with the Dodgers were a fluke, and probably Wilson's are the same.

    2007-04-09 10:40:07
    49.   D4P
    I'd rather have Bradley/Perez/Werth on the team than Pierre/Gonzalez
    2007-04-09 10:40:36
    50.   bhsportsguy
    45 I almost went one of the branch libraries (Chinatown or Little Tokyo) to use their Wifi but I needed to pick up something near the Starbucks. Also, was not sure of how good the WiFi is at the library.
    Show/Hide Comments 51-100
    2007-04-09 10:40:42
    51.   regfairfield
    46 Fair enough, but why carry a no hit infielder when you already have one in Ramon Martinez.
    2007-04-09 10:42:16
    52.   Bob Timmermann
    50
    As far as I know, the libraries with wifi connections work fine. I see people sitting outside the buildings using the connections.
    2007-04-09 10:42:24
    53.   bhsportsguy
    Time for Dodger Baseball, check in later.
    2007-04-09 10:42:24
    54.   Jon Weisman
    Chago76 -

    I didn't really understand your comment, but we are looking for constructive comments, constructive dialogue here. Please don't use this site to take shots at other people. Thanks.

    2007-04-09 10:49:42
    55.   underdog
    47 I miss Werth, too, but on the other hand the Phillies are off to a 1-5 start and have a few issues to sort out, so I dunno if I'm feeling all that wistful. Still, yeah, I wish Werth had worked out for LA, but with all his wrist injuries I can understand why he ended up somewhere else.
    2007-04-09 10:50:26
    56.   underdog
    28 "I used to go to the bathroom first, but the weather in Cleveland is now first."

    Although there's a thin line between the two activities...

    2007-04-09 10:51:47
    57.   Vishal
    [54] unless of course they are thoughtful and witty deconstructions of the dodger front office and roster :)
    2007-04-09 10:54:23
    58.   Bob Timmermann
    The David McCarty interview is interesting and McCarty is one of the few former players I've read who seems to have such a good handle on both the onfield performance of players and on the economics of the game.
    2007-04-09 10:56:32
    59.   Benaiah
    58 - I was surprised by that until I found out that he majored in economics at Stanford. That is the sort of background that would make statistical analysis second nature. Not to mention that it gives you great insight into Moneyball, which after is a book about Economics.
    2007-04-09 11:00:10
    60.   Jon Weisman
    Econ is, or was, a popular major for Stanford baseball players. I'm pretty sure Mussina majored in Econ.

    On an off day for Stanford at the 1988 College World Series, Mussina and I took (different) final exams together in a conference room at the Omaha Mariott.

    2007-04-09 11:02:46
    61.   D4P
    In my day, UofO athletes tended to favor the "Leisure Studies" major
    2007-04-09 11:08:15
    62.   Frip
    60
    Sidney Poitier and I had our Easter dinners together at adjacent tables.
    2007-04-09 11:09:00
    63.   D4P
    62
    I would have never guessed
    2007-04-09 11:13:44
    64.   Greg Brock
    44 Good luck with the student teaching. You'll be comfortable in no time.

    Ask lots of questions of your master teacher(s) and get your lesson plans done well ahead of time. Leave no minute unplanned.

    But most important, have a lot of fun!

    2007-04-09 11:14:32
    65.   Greg Brock
    Or importantly, whatever.
    2007-04-09 11:16:16
    66.   Bob Timmermann
    65
    Someone needs to go visit Lolly's!
    2007-04-09 11:17:19
    67.   madmac
    65 at least you didn't say "most impotently"
    2007-04-09 11:17:25
    68.   JoeyP
    Anderson is a much better hitter, which is more important than all of those categories put together. Valdez has been surprisingly good, but it is unlikely in the extreme that he is much better than terrible with the bat, leaving him as a all-glove, no stick guy and we already have Lucille II.

    Ramon Martinez career: .270/.330/.381
    Marlon Anderson career: .267/.319/.394
    Wilson Valdez--to small a major league sample, but comparably mediocre minor league numbers as the other two.

    Marlon Anderson is just as much of a no-hit infielder as Ramon is. He just doenst have the glove.

    Anderson's september really distorted his value I think. The guy is a bad hitter and not a very good fielder. The other two are bad hitters, but good fielders.

    2007-04-09 11:19:12
    69.   Bob Timmermann
    Tony Jackson is already in midseason form complaining about the elevators.
    2007-04-09 11:21:09
    70.   Greg S
    I live right in the shadow of Century City and I can't get AM radio reception at all. Anyone have any good tech ideas of how I can listen to games? Does anybody stream the games? I don't have a TV upstairs and I need to work.
    2007-04-09 11:25:13
    71.   Bob Timmermann
    I would build a shortwave set from parts you can find around your home or office.
    2007-04-09 11:25:42
    72.   natepurcell
    68

    maybe the dodgers want to keep marlon for his PHing ability.

    last 3 years....

    PH: 167AB 299/.372/.413

    close and late: 175AB 309/351/446

    PHing and close and late arent mutually exclusive. Maybe some players arent meant to play everyday but have a knack for PHing.

    2007-04-09 11:30:28
    73.   Pepperdine
    Maybe some players arent meant to play everyday but have a knack for PHing.

    Case in point: Olmedo Saenz

    2007-04-09 11:30:42
    74.   Greg S
    71 Why didn't I think of that? Any OTHER ideas?
    2007-04-09 11:30:51
    75.   underdog
    72 I think that's a really good point - absolutely a reason why Anderson is kept around. He hasn't done much this season, but pinch hitting is not easy. No guarantee Valdez could fill in capably in that capacity. But maybe some team will want him, Anderson, and come a-callin' in a couple of months. If the Dodgers still had Valdez in their organization, then things could change. But for now Marlon has shown he can be a solid pinch hitter option and that's one difference.
    2007-04-09 11:31:36
    76.   underdog
    74 Greg - an MLB Gameday audio subscription? Or are Dodger games blacked out on that locally?
    2007-04-09 11:33:12
    77.   s choir
    This early in the year, I think it makes sense for the Dodgers to keep as much major-league talent in the organization as possible, in contemplation of possible injuries. If Valdez gets away and Furcal goes down again, the team is left with Martinez as the starting shortstop, potentially for a long while.

    If that means optioning Ethier or Kemp, then so be it. They'll be back, assuming injuries, a trade, or Valdez returning to his mediocre form.

    2007-04-09 11:33:42
    78.   Bob Timmermann
    74
    And I thought Greg S was really McGyver.

    I'm really disappointed now.

    Gameday audio subscriptions have no local blackouts.

    2007-04-09 11:34:07
    79.   Greg S
    76. That's my guess - that it would be blocked out.
    2007-04-09 11:34:10
    80.   s choir
    76 There are no blackouts on MLB audio.
    2007-04-09 11:35:10
    81.   Greg S
    78. Oh, really? Than perhaps that is the way to go. Thanks
    2007-04-09 11:38:45
    82.   Benaiah
    77 - I wouldn't say that is it. Betemit has played SS, so has Nomar, Marlon Anderson played 2B for years, surely he could play SS in a pinch, Tony Abreu is a good shot to be better than Valdez and then Ned could always go make a trade (shudder). Besides, Valdez and Lucille II are basically the same player, why keep two of them? Why stockpile replacement level hitters at the expense of the team right now?
    2007-04-09 11:41:33
    83.   Greg S
    78. Is that you Patty and Selma?
    2007-04-09 11:43:32
    84.   ToyCannon
    Courtesy of Baseball America
    LAD AAA Abreu, Etanislao 3B ........ 5 2 2 3 .300 - 3B (1)
    LAD AAA LaRoche, Andy LF ........... 3 1 1 1 .176
    LAD AAA Young, Delwyn RF-LF ........ 4 2 2 1 .438 - HR (1)
    LAD AA Hu, Chin-Lung SS ........... 5 1 3 2 .375 - 2 2B (2)
    LAD HiA De Jesus, Ivan SS .......... 6 3 3 1 .400
    LAD HiA Dewitt, Blake 3B ........... 6 4 3 3 .250 - HR (2), E (2)
    LAD HiA Hoffmann, Jamie CF ......... 5 2 3 4 .556 - 2B (2)

    LAD AAA Miller, Greg ............. 3.0 1 1 1 5 3 3.00
    LAD HiA Troncoso Ramon ............. 3.0 1 0 0 0 5 2.25 - W (1-0); amazing outing for High Desert

    2007-04-09 11:48:00
    85.   Andrew Shimmin
    Cole Hamels nearly got Abraham Nunez beheaded. You can't just let your infielders figure out who should catch ball, when one of them is Ryan Howard. It's manslaughter.
    2007-04-09 11:49:13
    86.   s choir
    82 I think Betemit's SS days are over. He or Anderson could fill in, but I don't see them as options to start there long term.

    I don't think having both Valdez and Martinez on the team, short-term, costs the team anything, at least as long as they are producing. As soon as Valdez stops hitting the way he has, I have no problem releasing him.

    Also, the Dodgers haven't played any extra-inning games yet. Players like Anderson, Valdez, and Martinez, who can each play multiple positions in the infield and outfield, are very valuable in those games where you have to pinch hit a lot and shift people around the field.

    Remember, the Dodgers were awful for most of the year in extra innings in 2006.

    2007-04-09 11:51:11
    87.   D4P
    Question: Is there any legitimate reason why a flyout that scores a runner from third is counted as a sacrifice (with no AB for the hitter), while a groundout that scores a runner from third is not counted as a sacrifice?
    2007-04-09 11:51:38
    88.   s choir
    85 I just saw that. Quite comical. That was Hamels' fault. Hamels caught an earlier popup himself a couple of innings ago, and he was going to try to catch that one too before backing off at the last minute. If he had just been directing traffic instead of trying to make the play himself, that wouldn't have happened.
    2007-04-09 11:52:27
    89.   Bob Timmermann
    87
    I am in the choir to which you are preaching.

    Wait until next week's installment of "Random Record of the Week."

    2007-04-09 11:58:50
    90.   D4P
    89
    Woohoo! Another minion!

    It's as if:

    1. players can intentionally hit flyballs that are deep enough to score runners, but not deep enough to be HRs or far enough away from fielders to be hits,

    but

    2. players cannot intentionally hit groundballs to the right side of the infield.

    2007-04-09 11:59:14
    91.   ToyCannon
    86
    With Timo Perez in AAA we have the same backup that Valdez or Ramon supply. I just can't see putting Either or Kemp in AAA instead of worrying about losing a 2nd backup infielder.
    2007-04-09 12:01:46
    92.   Benaiah
    86 - Extra inning games are really fluky due to the fact that the score is always so close. The Dodgers were 3-8 in Extra Innings last year, but that is a probably small sample size and certainly not worth keeping two guys who can't hit on the team for. How much will they help in a game like that? How many games like that are there? Not much, and not many.
    2007-04-09 12:02:14
    93.   ToyCannon
    90
    It is the Anti-Eckstein faction at work. Since your a member I assumed you were in agreement in their decision to punish the weak and reward the strong.
    2007-04-09 12:02:43
    94.   Humma Kavula
    Is anyone having a worse day than me?

    *Gorgeous day
    *Parents in town
    *Tickets for the ballgame
    *Stuck at home working, waiting for an e-mail that never comes, but until it does, can't leave.

    2007-04-09 12:04:01
    95.   Jon Weisman
    86 - The Dodgers played 162 games last season and lost eight in extra innings (3-8). Those tend to be depressing, but a lot of it is also luck. And even if you don't believe that it's luck, it's not the kind of thing you should worry about adjusting the roster for. Worry about winning the 93 percent of games you play that are nine innings.
    2007-04-09 12:07:03
    96.   s choir
    86 As long as he isn't hitting like a 2nd backup infielder, and as long as Gonzalez is producing, I don't see what's wrong with temporarily putting Kemp or Ethier in AAA. If the roster is still bursting at its seams in a couple of months and everyone is still in perfect health (highly unlikely given recent Dodger history), then maybe you try to trade someone to open up a spot. It's a long season. We're going to need contributions from a lot of people.
    2007-04-09 12:07:04
    97.   Jon Weisman
    92 - Benaiah wins.
    2007-04-09 12:09:51
    98.   chazmac138
    94.
    Me! I'm stuck at work with two field level seats that I can't use. I'm going to have to give them to a guy who works the third shift and is leaving shortly. No gurantee that he will even go though........it's criminal.
    2007-04-09 12:11:29
    99.   ToyCannon
    Does 98 trump 94?
    2007-04-09 12:12:00
    100.   Benaiah
    97 - A lifetime of undue diligence pays off.
    Show/Hide Comments 101-150
    2007-04-09 12:12:42
    101.   weatherman
    Since I live in Memphis, I go to Redbirds (cardinals AAA) games in order to get my baseball fix. I try to go to see them when they play Las Vegas for the chance to see a fledling Dodger or two. This morning I was looking at the 51s roster and noticed that Luis Gonzalez is a lefty pitcher on their roster. That will add a dose of comic confusion to the locker room if ever he is brought up.
    2007-04-09 12:13:48
    102.   Jon Weisman
    94 - I couldn't get out of work to go, period.
    2007-04-09 12:14:25
    103.   s choir
    Mets just gave up a 3-run HR to Ryan Howard, with first base open.
    2007-04-09 12:15:02
    104.   Frip
    94
    "Parents in town"

    Yippy!!!!

    Pardon, I hate my parents.

    2007-04-09 12:16:45
    105.   Benaiah
    104 - I guess that tops 94 and 97.
    2007-04-09 12:18:35
    106.   Bob Timmermann
    104
    My parents are deceased. I would love to go to a baseball game with them.
    2007-04-09 12:20:20
    107.   kngoworld
    ... and the crowd is silenced.
    2007-04-09 12:20:32
    108.   D4P
    106
    You might try carving out a baseball diamond in your corn field
    2007-04-09 12:21:53
    109.   Humma Kavula
    98 At least you're getting work done. I am stuck at home for work but with no work to do until this e-mail comes, which it won't.
    2007-04-09 12:22:21
    110.   ToyCannon
    I would think for the majority of us, if it wasn't for our Dad's we wouldn't be serious baseball fans but I may be off base.
    2007-04-09 12:23:05
    111.   Dodgers49
    7. I do not envy Mr. Coletti and the decisions with which he is faced.

    The decisions are easy. Keep the kids. End of story.

    2007-04-09 12:23:40
    112.   Bob Timmermann
    108
    You know what the last movie I ever saw with my mother was?

    I was going to say "Field of Dreams", but it was actually "Howard's End."

    2007-04-09 12:23:40
    113.   ToyCannon
    109
    You could borrow Bob's Blackberry. He won't need it while he's at the Library.
    2007-04-09 12:24:14
    114.   Humma Kavula
    110 Actually, it was my grandfather who turned me on to baseball. My parents both couldn't care less, but it was going to be a fun way to spend the afternoon.

    Now, they're going to the Norton Simon, if they can figure out how to start my car.

    2007-04-09 12:25:20
    115.   kngoworld
    I attended the last six opening days. Although, I was working as a food vendor up and down the aisles. Moved to Vegas a couple months ago for a real job. This season is going to be tough on me. I loved working at the stadium and watching about 75 games a year in person.
    2007-04-09 12:25:23
    116.   D4P
    112
    The last movie I ever saw with my mother was "The Polar Express." Fortunately, she's still alive, as that movie was horrendous.
    2007-04-09 12:26:09
    117.   chazmac138
    109.
    I feel your pain. This will be the first opening day at Chavez Ravine that I've missed in the last 12 years. The only solace that I can take is that it's against the Rockies and I'll have like 10 more opportunities to see the Dodgers wax em'!
    2007-04-09 12:27:42
    118.   Bob Timmermann
    114
    Grandma and I listened to the entire 22 innings of the Dodgers 1-0 win over the Expos on August 23, 1989 together.
    2007-04-09 12:28:37
    119.   Greg S
    110. Not me. Mom was the fan. Dad still doesn't know a thing about baseball. I'm not going today but I keep looking at the clock and thinking I should. If any of you stuck with tickets guys can send electronically, that would tip the scales. Anyone? Miracle ticket? What time is it?
    2007-04-09 12:29:02
    120.   weatherman
    Who is Norton Simon?
    2007-04-09 12:30:06
    121.   Humma Kavula
    117 The worst part is, I hate the Rockies. I hate everything about them. I hate that they're called "The Rockies." I hate that they gave ridiculous contracts to players that haven't paid off. I hate that instead of revelling in their messed-up mile-high ballpark, they've gone to extreme lengths to figure out how to get it to play like everywhere else. I hate their management, their players, their public-relations people, their grounds crew, and their uniforms.

    But you can't listen to me. I'm in kind of a foul mood today.

    2007-04-09 12:32:01
    122.   Greg Brock
    Since we're talking about fathers and baseball, I stumbled onto an old Scoremaster scoring book my father used to keep score for two All-Star games in 1959 (yup, two of them), and the 1959 World Series. Craziness to see he kept score at home as a twelve-year-old kid.

    He also had somebody keep score of the Lunada Bay All-Stars vs. Silver Spur All-Stars in the same book (his Little League team). Pops struck out 10 in six innings.

    So, if anybody wants to know how Don Demeter did in the WS, I'm your man.

    2007-04-09 12:33:22
    123.   underdog
    Really? The Rockies are actually the one team in the NL West that I don't "hate" (in relative sports terms). I just haven't been given enough reasons to hate them, and don't have enough of a geographic connection to their fan base to feel an intense blood-boiling rivalry. Or maybe it's just 'cause I'm a Broncos fan? Or maybe I'm just not in a bad enough mood (yet).
    2007-04-09 12:34:11
    124.   Bob Timmermann
    120
    Norton Simon was a wealthy, wealthy, wealthy man.

    He was married to Jennifer Jones. But then he died. So I assume that means he's not married anymore.

    2007-04-09 12:34:35
    125.   D4P
    I'm surprised anyone cares enough about the Rockies one way or another to actually hate them
    2007-04-09 12:34:43
    126.   Daniel Zappala
    108 Absolutely hilarious.
    2007-04-09 12:35:22
    127.   Frip
    121 - Yes, naming themselves The Rockies says it all about the state of imagination and creative edge in the land of white.
    2007-04-09 12:36:23
    128.   jasonungar05
    Mom as well. In fact she is 3rd row today and I am the office. sucks for me. go blue.
    2007-04-09 12:36:32
    129.   Humma Kavula
    It's true: I'm the Rockies' designated hater. Nobody else was doing it and there was a market inefficiency. Let it be known that I am the Guy Who Hates the Rockies.
    2007-04-09 12:37:29
    130.   Greg S
    122 I found a program where my mom had kept score of a game that had DiMaggio and Williams in it. She said that later, Carl Yastrzemski hit on her but being that she was 16, she declined.
    2007-04-09 12:37:53
    131.   Frip
    I know you only as the man who named himself Humma Kavula.
    2007-04-09 12:39:13
    132.   Bob Timmermann
    129
    I used to be The Guy Who Hated The Padres, but I seem to have company now.

    The first NHL team to play in Denver was the Colorado Rockies.

    2007-04-09 12:39:53
    133.   weatherman
    120 - Heck of a biography, Bob.
    2007-04-09 12:43:22
    134.   Disabled List
    I hate that instead of revelling in their messed-up mile-high ballpark, they've gone to extreme lengths to figure out how to get it to play like everywhere else.

    I actually appreciate that about the Rockies. Coors Field baseball pre-humidor was an ugly thing to behold.

    2007-04-09 12:43:26
    135.   Bob Timmermann
    133
    He owned lots of oil wells.

    And lots of art.

    And has a big museum named after him in Pasadena.

    2007-04-09 12:43:33
    136.   Jon Weisman
    118 - By the way, it was Grandma Sue's 97th birthday Saturday, and we had a nice celebration. I didn't do a post, but Carl Hubbell's most dedicated living fan is relatively hale.
    2007-04-09 12:45:57
    137.   Disabled List
    My mom went out on a date once with Wes Parker. She was unimpressed with his fancy car, so he got miffed and never called back for a second date.
    2007-04-09 12:46:29
    138.   King of the Hobos
    Megrew and Meloan combined for a 9 K shutout today. Megrew K'd 6 in 7 IP and Meloan finished it with 3 Ks in 2 IP. Together they allowed 4 hits and did not walk anybody.
    2007-04-09 12:50:38
    139.   Vishal
    [94] i've been trying to work on a paper all day, which isn't going very well, and is going to be late anyway.

    and it's been snowing.

    2007-04-09 12:51:05
    140.   Marty
    My mother was the real Dodger fan in my house. She would always order cable television for the baseball season, then cancel it when the season was over.
    2007-04-09 12:51:29
    141.   Benaiah
    138 - I thought Megrew was a reliever? Good to see another wave of arms down on the farm. I predict (hope) that Meloan will be on the Dodgers by the All-Star break.
    2007-04-09 12:52:17
    142.   Marty
    137 Was he a gentleman??
    2007-04-09 12:55:05
    143.   Bodog
    HELP

    I'm an educator in LAUSD looking to take some high-achieving middle school students to Dodger Stadium. I've seen and heard of this happening in the past, but can find no mention of class trips on the Dodger website.

    Does anyone have a contact number, or would be able to point me in the right direction.

    Thank you so much.

    Keep up the great work Jon!

    2007-04-09 12:56:55
    144.   Humma Kavula
    142 I was going to ask if he "batted for the cycle."
    2007-04-09 12:57:57
    145.   Disabled List
    142 I have no idea how gentlemanly he was, but Mom said it was a lousy date. All he could talk about was his car, which she couldn't have cared less about.
    2007-04-09 12:58:30
    146.   D4P
    I was going to ask if he "scored."

    Get it?

    2007-04-09 12:59:23
    147.   weatherman
    135 - I wonder how many Dodgerthoughts mothers HE dated... I asked mine, she said she had not.
    2007-04-09 13:01:27
    148.   weatherman
    147 - I should have used a semi-colon.
    2007-04-09 13:03:25
    149.   Greg Brock
    Steve Sax throwing out the first pitch:

    Make throwing jokes accordingly.

    2007-04-09 13:03:29
    150.   Marty
    My dad dated Stan Musial's sister. At least he said he did.
    Show/Hide Comments 151-200
    2007-04-09 13:05:25
    151.   Disabled List
    Wes Parker might be a swell guy for all I know, but between him and my dad, I think my mom clearly made the right choice.

    Although I guess that means I missed out on the baseball genes lottery. Dad couldn't play the game at all (but it's not like Wes Parker's any great shakes, either).

    2007-04-09 13:08:19
    152.   Greg Brock
    Complacent rocker chick is massacring the national anthem.
    2007-04-09 13:08:33
    153.   Vishal
    [149] you know who's happiest about it? the mayor of cincinnati.
    2007-04-09 13:08:54
    154.   Humma Kavula
    For the past 10-20 minutes, there have been jets flying over my house.

    What could this possibly be? I asked myself.

    Then I remembered: they're probably doing a flyover of the Stadium for opening day.

    Stop mocking me!!

    2007-04-09 13:10:24
    155.   D4P
    No offense to anyone, but is the connection between baseball and the United States really THAT strong? Granted, the game started here, but it's not as if golf tournaments begin with the Scottish anthem...
    2007-04-09 13:11:39
    156.   Andrew Shimmin
    154- Alternate explanation:

    http://apnews.myway.com/article/20070408/D8OCIJ400.html

    It's good to know I'm not alone.

    2007-04-09 13:12:40
    157.   weatherman
    Don't all pro sports games begin with the National Anthem?
    2007-04-09 13:12:58
    158.   Jon Weisman
    155 - It's as strong as the connection between baseball and hot dogs. A tradition I see no reason to part with. And perhaps stronger than the connection between baseball and doves.
    2007-04-09 13:13:10
    159.   Bob Timmermann
    155
    The Kansas City Royals planned to dispense with the National Anthem except for holidays and other special days in the early 1970s and quickly dropped the plan under a firestorm of protest.

    Playing the National Anthem before games started around World War I and became a fixture by World War II.

    Change that tradition at your own peril.

    2007-04-09 13:13:52
    160.   ToyCannon
    155
    The day we stop singing "God Bless America" and "Star Spangled Banner" at sporting events will be a happy one in my life. I expect to die without that request being granted.
    2007-04-09 13:14:02
    161.   s choir
    My Extra Innings free preview just stopped working. Is anyone else having this problem?
    2007-04-09 13:14:13
    162.   Greg Brock
    155 I'm not a big fan of the national anthem at every sporting event. And it's a terrible anthem. America the Beautiful is much nicer.

    Nothing makes me love America like a depressing ditty about the War of 1812.

    It's tiiiiiiime for Dodger baseball.

    2007-04-09 13:16:13
    163.   Bob Timmermann
    A pFX of 12.3" on Schmidt's first pitch!
    2007-04-09 13:17:01
    164.   Frip
    That had to be the weakest most anti-climactic national anthem I've ever heard, and I've heard Art Garfunkle's son sing it.
    2007-04-09 13:17:15
    165.   Vishal
    the phillies are trying their best not to beat the mets.
    2007-04-09 13:17:30
    166.   Bob Timmermann
    162
    Baseball games should start with Barry Sadler's "Ballad of the Green Berets."
    2007-04-09 13:18:50
    167.   Vishal
    [165] relatedly, aaron rowand's arm looks almost as bad as pierre's.
    2007-04-09 13:20:00
    168.   Bob Timmermann
    Put purple wings on Jason Schmidt's chest ...
    2007-04-09 13:20:15
    169.   D4P
    Would seemingly make more sense to play "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" or some such baseball-related ditty. Not a big deal, but I don't see the relationship between the national anthem and the baseball game. For one thing, what kind of message does it send to all the players in the league who aren't from the US?
    2007-04-09 13:20:46
    170.   adraymond
    Why would the pride of UCLA do that to the Dodgers?
    2007-04-09 13:20:53
    171.   Benaiah
    Man the Rockies have a lot of really good hitting. They definitely look like the best hitting team in the division. And I thought that before Atkins took Schmidt deep.
    2007-04-09 13:21:32
    172.   kngoworld
    Thata boy schmidt!
    2007-04-09 13:21:33
    173.   ToyCannon
    Fastball at 84 according to Rockies announcer.
    2007-04-09 13:22:18
    174.   Benaiah
    171 - At least Helton isn't playing today.
    2007-04-09 13:22:33
    175.   madmac
    Ramon Martinez AKA Ramirez
    2007-04-09 13:23:02
    176.   Frip
    "For one thing, what kind of message does it send to all the players in the league who aren't from the US?"

    Don't know, what kind?

    2007-04-09 13:23:31
    177.   D4P
    171
    Holliday, Atkins, Helton, and Hawpe are a fearsome foursome
    2007-04-09 13:23:51
    178.   D4P
    Don't know, what kind?

    I asked first!

    2007-04-09 13:23:58
    179.   weatherman
    At Bluejays games they play O, Canada, right?
    2007-04-09 13:24:37
    180.   alexx
    Wow, Schmidt actually hit 90 once in that inning.
    2007-04-09 13:24:41
    181.   Benaiah
    The question is: What do the Blue Jays do before games? I am hoping nothing, but I doubt it.
    2007-04-09 13:25:24
    182.   Andrew Shimmin
    what kind of message does it send to all the players in the league who aren't from the US?

    A happy one? I mean, depending on if the singer is any good. It could be a boring one, just as easily.

    Maybe I don't understand the question. What kind of message do you think is being sent?

    2007-04-09 13:25:52
    183.   scareduck
    For those who care, I've written a crawler that will give you the retro gameday for all the day's games. It should be a daily feature of the blog starting today. There are some caveats; some of the translations may not be working, but I'll be getting those corrected as they pop up. Here's today's links:

    http://6-4-2.blogspot.com/2007/04/dodgers-home-opener-gift-retro-gameday.html

    2007-04-09 13:27:01
    184.   Benaiah
    179 - You beat me to the punch. It is interesting to me how many people got upset about Carlos Delgado not standing for the National Anthem. He isn't even American, why should he have to stand?*

    *Puerto Ricans aren't citizens, since they don't vote. So he isn't technically American.

    2007-04-09 13:27:13
    185.   Bob Timmermann
    I believe this was the last major league game to not have either the US or Canadian anthem played before it:
    http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/2003/B06220MON2003.htm

    It was St. John Baptist Day in Montreal and there was a big Quebecois nationalist parade before the game and the people in Montreal realized that the crowd would get really ticked off it they heard either the US or Canadian anthems before the game.

    2007-04-09 13:27:26
    186.   D4P
    What kind of message do you think is being sent?

    I don't think any kind of message is being sent intentionally, but I don't see the point of emphasizing the United States before a baseball game.

    I can see playing the national anthem at the Olympics, where the competition is explicitly between countries (and their athletes).

    2007-04-09 13:28:51
    187.   Bob Timmermann
    Puerto Ricans are citizens of the United States.

    And Carlos Delgado always stood for the National Anthem. He did not come out on the field for the playing of "God Bless America" and he has ended that protest since joining the Mets.

    2007-04-09 13:31:16
    188.   kngoworld
    Here comes the Masher!
    2007-04-09 13:32:04
    189.   D4P
    Vin just used the word "brilliant" to describe LuGo's career
    2007-04-09 13:32:10
    190.   ToyCannon
    Gonzo has hit 20 homers at Dodger Stadium, 2nd to only Bonds for visiting players.
    2007-04-09 13:33:17
    191.   Marty
    So does Francis still look like a 12-year-old?
    2007-04-09 13:33:25
    192.   Bob Timmermann
    In the film "My Brilliant Career" who was supposed to have had the brilliant career? Peter O'Toole's character or Mark Linn-Baker's character?
    2007-04-09 13:33:41
    193.   kngoworld
    Well what is it? LuGo or Gonzo?
    2007-04-09 13:34:42
    194.   Jon Weisman
    The point I'm making is that the anthem has been part of baseball for so long, that it would seem unfortunate to me to let go of it - like getting rid of organ music.

    Does everything at a baseball game have to be completely relevant or contemporary?

    As for how the non-U.S. ballplayers feel, I'm sure a good many feel as I would if I were in another country and heard that anthem played, starting with 1) not personally offended.

    2007-04-09 13:34:48
    195.   Greg Brock
    LuGo when he strikes out. Gonzo when he homers.
    2007-04-09 13:35:02
    196.   Bob Timmermann
    192
    I got my movies confused.

    Ignore me.

    2007-04-09 13:35:14
    197.   Benaiah
    187 - I was way off. I don't know why I thought that. Puerto Ricans' can't vote in U.S. elections, so maybe that is why.
    2007-04-09 13:35:16
    198.   Frip
    Not very Gonzo is he. But LuGo sounds vaguely vulgar.
    2007-04-09 13:35:23
    199.   Benaiah
    Or can they?
    2007-04-09 13:35:52
    200.   Bob Timmermann
    194
    You can always head off to Japan where they play the national anthem about half the time and about 1/3 of the crowd bothers to stand up.
    Show/Hide Comments 201-250
    2007-04-09 13:36:41
    201.   Greg Brock
    When the anthem is played for every single sporting event, it loses its importance. I just tune out, which I'm sure is not what is intended.

    It's just not important to me, because I hear it too much.

    2007-04-09 13:38:08
    202.   Daniel Zappala
    I've always like the Canadian national anthem.
    2007-04-09 13:38:38
    203.   Bob Timmermann
    You can go to small school high school football games. They don't play the national anthem before those, although you may get a prayer every now and then.
    2007-04-09 13:39:05
    204.   Bob Timmermann
    202
    It was Carla and Eddie's song.
    2007-04-09 13:39:52
    205.   Bob Timmermann
    Remember CanuckDodger is standing on guard for us.
    2007-04-09 13:40:10
    207.   underdog
    Yeah, you were thinking of My Favorite Year, Bob. I don't think Judy Davis is a big baseball fan...
    2007-04-09 13:40:35
    208.   Jon Weisman
    201 - When baseball is played for every single day, it loses its importance. I just tune out, which I'm sure is not what is intended.

    It's just not important to me, because I see it too much.

    ...Now see what you've started?!

    2007-04-09 13:40:55
    209.   Marty
    What the heck is pfx? Release point? Who cares about that?
    2007-04-09 13:41:13
    210.   D4P
    206
    Yeah, that's a good point too. What do warplanes have to do with baseball...?
    2007-04-09 13:41:21
    211.   Greg Brock
    208 I don't watch the same game over and over.
    2007-04-09 13:41:44
    212.   Bob Timmermann
    No one is quite sure what pFX is. But the latest theory is that is has something to do with where the pitch cross the plate on the horizontal plane in relation to the batter.
    2007-04-09 13:41:55
    213.   Jon Weisman
    206 - I'm sorry, Frip, but I felt that verged enough toward the political to delete.
    2007-04-09 13:42:39
    214.   Jon Weisman
    211 - The anthem isn't sung the same way over and over.
    2007-04-09 13:43:54
    215.   Marty
    214 Just ask Rosanne
    2007-04-09 13:44:05
    216.   Bob Timmermann
    I miss the times when we just complained about Juan Pierre.
    2007-04-09 13:45:42
    217.   Marty
    And Gameday makes it look like the pitches are coming from this mysterious register mark.
    2007-04-09 13:46:15
    218.   Bob Timmermann
    You can go to the options button in the top right Marty and turn off a lot of the animation.
    2007-04-09 13:46:24
    219.   MollyKnight
    Living in New York, I've had to watch all these games on MLBTV and they always give me the home announcers.

    Needless to say, I'm overjoyed to hear Vin's voice again.

    2007-04-09 13:46:26
    220.   Greg Brock
    Maybe it's just the song itself. It's not one of your better anthems. It doesn't celebrate much about America, other than our ability to withstand a good bombing.

    America the Beautiful has amber waves of grain and whatnot. It's purty.

    2007-04-09 13:47:57
    221.   Greg Brock
    Anyhoo, Go Dodgers!
    2007-04-09 13:48:21
    222.   underdog
    219 Ditto here, Molly, even if he did call Ramon Martinez "Ramirez" and made a corny joke about Troy Tulowitzky's name. God bless Vin I missed him!
    2007-04-09 13:48:44
    223.   Vishal
    [219] last year they didn't seem to have a pattern with which announcing crew you got. it wasn't always the home team's announcers. usually it seemed to me they liked to pick whichever announcers were worse.
    2007-04-09 13:48:53
    224.   Marty
    218 But then, what would I complain about?
    2007-04-09 13:49:01
    225.   Jon Weisman
    220 - That's an entirely different issue, though I still personally maintain that SSB is over-criticized.
    2007-04-09 13:49:57
    226.   Jon Weisman
    Sneaking a peek at the game during my lunch break, I feel that Schmidt's pitches, even though they aren't registering high on the radar gun, have decent zip and movement.
    2007-04-09 13:50:32
    227.   Frip
    It's ok Jon, you're probably right. Just meant militarism.
    2007-04-09 13:50:35
    228.   Jon Weisman
    183 - I like the old Gameday you brought back, Rob.
    2007-04-09 13:50:42
    229.   Benaiah
    219 - They used to give you the option, but I guess they could save a few bucks this way.

    I have often wondered, does ESPN cover the sports packages that their staff purchases? It seems like it is a business expense. I imagine not, but I wouldn't be surprised.

    2007-04-09 13:51:04
    230.   Daniel Zappala
    220 I would sign on to change our anthem to America the Beautiful. But then I'd probably sign on to change it to "Oh America" too.
    2007-04-09 13:51:10
    231.   Andrew Shimmin
    Or you can get classic gameday from the 6-4-2 link Rob posted. It's so wonderful; it makes me want to call a foreigner and sing the national anthem at him. It's a little late, though, in the places where I know foreigners.
    2007-04-09 13:51:33
    232.   Vishal
    [220] i too prefer AtB to any of the other patriotic ditties.
    2007-04-09 13:51:53
    233.   Greg Brock
    There is also the not-so-small point that we're not going to change the anthem, and we're not going to stop playing it, so these are the complaints of the powerless.

    Schmidt is sitting on 83-86 mph. Make of that what you will.

    2007-04-09 13:52:39
    234.   Jon Weisman
    226 - But he has left a couple over the plate, though ...
    2007-04-09 13:52:47
    235.   Daniel Zappala
    231 You could just go visit UCLA's engineering grad students.
    2007-04-09 13:53:00
    236.   ToyCannon
    Purty it is but I'll take "This Land is Your Land". So many better options but we end up with option C much like our Dodger lineup.

    With Valdez, Pierre, and Martinez in the lineup it scarily reminds me of 2005.

    2007-04-09 13:53:56
    237.   Benaiah
    232 - I am partial to "This Land is Our Land" but it might not have that Ballad quality that people like in national anthems.
    2007-04-09 13:54:29
    238.   Greg Brock
    236
    If changing the anthem would cause a firestorm, changing it to a Woody Guthrie tune might cause a constitutional crisis.
    2007-04-09 13:55:16
    239.   Andrew Shimmin
    235- That sounds a little dangerous. I prefer taunting foreigners one at a time, and much prefer doing it when there's at least one good ocean between us.
    2007-04-09 13:55:26
    240.   Benaiah
    236 - I beat Jon once, and then I lose out twice to other posters.
    2007-04-09 13:55:55
    241.   Daniel Zappala
    236 Before the game started, I looked a the infield defense shown in the CBS game center, and thought, wow, except for the right side (Kemp, Garciaparra, Martin), the Dodgers lineup looks anemic.
    2007-04-09 13:56:50
    242.   weatherman
    Well, I can stand beside ideas I think are right
    And I can stand beside the idea to stand and fight
    I do believe there's a dream for everyone
    This is our country

    There's room enough here for science to live
    And there's room enough here for religion to forgive
    And try to understand other people of this land
    This is our country

    2007-04-09 13:56:53
    243.   scareduck
    225 - SSB is often criticized by singers for its wide register swings.

    228 - thanks, Jon.

    2007-04-09 13:57:51
    244.   imperabo
    I'd go with Stars and Stripes Forever, but not ATB. The ability to withstand a good bombing defines a nation far better than purple mountains.
    2007-04-09 13:58:22
    245.   Frip
    Schmidt deserves a better face.
    2007-04-09 13:58:40
    246.   Gen3Blue
    233 I'm not sure what to make of it. I know a pitcher can be good at almost any velocity, but I thought Schmidt was a hard thrower. If you notice any tendency not to challenge hitters, then he thinks something is wrong. I havent seen that yet.( But I've seen a few hard hit balls). Hey, 5 strike-outs ain't bad.
    2007-04-09 13:58:48
    247.   Gen3Blue
    233 I'm not sure what to make of it. I know a pitcher can be good at almost any velocity, but I thought Schmidt was a hard thrower. If you notice any tendency not to challenge hitters, then he thinks something is wrong. I havent seen that yet.( But I've seen a few hard hit balls). Hey, 5 strike-outs ain't bad.
    2007-04-09 13:58:54
    248.   underdog
    241 And, I assume you meant to say, Kent?
    2007-04-09 13:59:03
    249.   Benaiah
    242 - I can't believe that commercial is still on. Who goes for that sort of thing? They have released about a million versions of it too. Maybe once they paid for the rights to the song they figured they had to pay to death.
    2007-04-09 13:59:04
    250.   Greg Brock
    242 I do believe Andrew will have something to say about your bold little gambit.

    I posted those lyrics once. Once.

    Show/Hide Comments 251-300
    2007-04-09 13:59:24
    251.   s choir
    233 That's what the gun says, but my eyes tell me differently. That looks like a heavy fastball to me. I think the ball is carrying very well out to left. Atkins' HR would have been routine at night.
    2007-04-09 13:59:47
    252.   Greg Brock
    That's why we pay the man.
    2007-04-09 13:59:49
    253.   underdog
    Schmidt looked terrific in that last Atkins at bat, I'll say that. It really is the zip and location more than the velocity. he seems to have good control except for those few balls left hanging.
    2007-04-09 13:59:53
    254.   Gen3Blue
    Thats how to pitch!!!
    2007-04-09 13:59:55
    255.   skybluestoday
    Schmidt! Goes deep!

    Oh my goodness!

    2007-04-09 14:00:05
    256.   Vishal
    schmidt flashing some power! :)
    2007-04-09 14:00:06
    257.   ToyCannon
    That must be the big bat we signed this winter:)
    2007-04-09 14:00:14
    258.   Benaiah
    250 - I get the song stuck in my head just by looking at the lyrics. It is the worst sort of catchy.
    2007-04-09 14:00:15
    259.   underdog
    Oh, and he also swings a pretty mean bat, I meant to add.

    !

    2007-04-09 14:00:26
    260.   Benaiah
    Schmidt gets one back!
    2007-04-09 14:00:35
    261.   FirstMohican
    Schmidt should be hitting in the 7 spot.
    2007-04-09 14:00:39
    262.   scareduck
    Helen would be thrilled if she were watching the game and/or cared. National League rules for her all the way. Good show, Schmitty!
    2007-04-09 14:00:52
    263.   s choir
    251 Right when I posted that, Schmidt hits his HR to left.
    2007-04-09 14:01:22
    264.   Benaiah
    There is now a betting chance that Schmidt will out homer Juan Pierre for the year.
    2007-04-09 14:02:34
    265.   D4P
    264
    At the very least, Schmidt will out AB/HR Pierre
    2007-04-09 14:02:53
    266.   imperabo
    That looked like Jeter at short.
    2007-04-09 14:03:09
    267.   Benaiah
    Does anyone know a place that tracks balls in play to the infield versus the outfield. I would wager that 85% of Pierre's BIP have been in the infield.
    2007-04-09 14:03:31
    268.   Disabled List
    I'd like to report, for anyone who's interested, that while Gameday (MLB), Gamecenter (CBS), and Gamechannel (Yahoo) all overload and crash my browser, ESPN's Gamecast is working quite nicely.
    2007-04-09 14:03:35
    269.   scareduck
    266 - You mean the pasta-diving Jeter?
    2007-04-09 14:04:23
    270.   Frip
    Nomar just doesn't seem like a tight pants guy, yet he is.
    2007-04-09 14:04:24
    271.   ToyCannon
    Phillies could be having a fire sale by late April if they get swept by the Mets this week and that possibility just got very real with that implosion.
    2007-04-09 14:04:24
    272.   weatherman
    Yeah, it's pretty much the best song ever. I was going to wade in on the whole Star Spangled debate, but the bard John Cougar, in all his eloquence, made a far more compelling argument than ever I could have made. America! ---- Yeah!
    2007-04-09 14:04:26
    273.   regfairfield
    267 When my site comes up it will be able to :). Until then, I think MLB.com has hit charts.
    2007-04-09 14:04:41
    274.   Vishal
    [237] it seems that people usually like a march quality in their national anthems.
    2007-04-09 14:04:47
    275.   Jon Weisman
    Dodger HR Leaders

    Gonzalez 2
    Martin 1
    Kent 1
    Schmidt 1
    20 tied with 0

    2007-04-09 14:05:10
    276.   imperabo
    269 Exactly. He had forever and a day to get to that ball, though he probably wouldn't have had a play anyway.
    2007-04-09 14:05:58
    277.   Gen3Blue
    Can a team be great without a superstar or two. Imagine a team with 8 Russ Martin equivs.
    2007-04-09 14:06:28
    278.   jasonungar05
    I'll take that bet. I bet Pierre will hit 1 and Schmidt will hit 2.

    The odds also just went up (yesterday both in Gonzo (HR's) and Kemp being in there and hitting the ball hard) that the dodger OF will hit more than 40HR total in 2007.

    2007-04-09 14:06:59
    279.   ToyCannon
    How come the speedy Rockie CF glides from left to right while our speedy CF stumbles from left to right?
    2007-04-09 14:07:26
    280.   alexx
    As far as I can tell, Jeff Ken is the only batter to have swung at the first pitch of an at bat this game. He's done it in both of his at bats so far.
    2007-04-09 14:07:38
    281.   weatherman
    I'm sorry. I know there are rules regarding sarcasm and what not, but I couldn't help myself.
    2007-04-09 14:07:51
    282.   Benaiah
    277 - Who plays short? Or Center field? Or pitch? I think I would just trade some of those Martins for other players.
    2007-04-09 14:08:23
    283.   Sam DC
    Hey all, been a while but I figured I'd check in for the Opener. Changed jobs and now sit at a small desk in plain view of many eyes, so my goofingoffativity is way down.

    I did smile when I saw on the crawl that LuGo had hit two out yesterday.

    2007-04-09 14:10:20
    284.   Jon Weisman
    Hi Sam. If it helps, you can use my tax dollars to goof off.
    2007-04-09 14:10:31
    285.   Greg Brock
    283 Hey Sam!

    So, um, Nationals...Um, well...Nice to see you again!

    2007-04-09 14:11:07
    286.   Bob Timmermann
    I'm at the Carl's Jr across from the library watching the game although I can't hear over the din of the collection of bike messengers who hang out here.

    One looks like Kevin Bacon and I think he has a troubled relationship with Jami Gertz.

    2007-04-09 14:12:22
    287.   Frip
    Weird Dodger ad with the guy on the sofa. Maybe the first commercial to try and make the customer feel like a complete loser.
    2007-04-09 14:12:29
    288.   Greg Brock
    Schmidt's up to around 87-88 mph this inning.
    2007-04-09 14:13:49
    289.   s choir
    That ball to right appeared to carry on Kemp as well.
    2007-04-09 14:13:52
    290.   Benaiah
    288 - He hit 91 last game, so I think that he isn't quite Tim Wakefield just yet.
    2007-04-09 14:13:56
    291.   Jon Weisman
    I don't have the radio on, but I suspect Rick Monday will spend a half-hour, give or take, talking about Matt Kemp not having his sunglasses on.
    2007-04-09 14:14:10
    292.   Vishal
    if kemp ever decides to give up baseball, he might have a future in the circus. the man can juggle.
    2007-04-09 14:15:10
    293.   chazmac138
    287.
    I've seen that commercial. I think it's aimed at the die-hards. If I had longer blond hair, that could be me. And I'm not a loser, my mom tells me so.....
    2007-04-09 14:15:36
    294.   we are infinite
    Oh Vin... Kemp knows how to use sunglasses. They just look super cool on top of the bill. Who cares if they're useless up there? Gonzo and Pierre have the flip-up shades and they look like total dorks. :P
    2007-04-09 14:16:47
    295.   Daniel Zappala
    4/22 BIP by Pierre have been to the outfield. Two of those four were singles. Not counting today's game.
    2007-04-09 14:16:53
    296.   ToyCannon
    According to Dewan's fielding bible, Gonzo plays the deepest LF in baseball thus allowing many hits to fall in front of him but it also allowed him to catch balls that would be over other left fielder's head. I'm only bringing it up because the Rockie announcer just mentioned how deep Gonzo is playing.
    2007-04-09 14:17:23
    297.   FirstMohican
    Gameday says Schmidt's been between 84 and 91 with the first pitch of the game the only exception at 81. Interesting.
    2007-04-09 14:18:43
    298.   Benaiah
    295 - So I was off, it was only 82% in the infield, not 85%.
    2007-04-09 14:19:01
    299.   Jon Weisman
    Oh man.
    2007-04-09 14:19:03
    300.   Vishal
    oh no.
    Show/Hide Comments 301-350
    2007-04-09 14:19:24
    301.   underdog
    Oh no...

    {{heart in throat}}

    2007-04-09 14:19:24
    302.   Greg Brock
    Kemp smashes into the wall and is hurt.

    Looks like he's okay, but man, he slammed into that thing.

    2007-04-09 14:19:39
    303.   Jon Weisman
    Kemp smacked his head against the wall.
    2007-04-09 14:19:55
    304.   Andrew Shimmin
    The future of the free world just flashed before my eyes. Bad, bad times.
    2007-04-09 14:20:09
    306.   Sam DC
    284 I'm on it right now.

    Everyday, my 6 yr old asks what the Nationals did the day before. Character-building or soul-crushing?

    I feel like Dr. Skinner sometimes.

    2007-04-09 14:20:11
    307.   underdog
    Maybe he just dinged his noggin a little bit. Vin's more worried about his belt buckle for some reason.
    2007-04-09 14:20:18
    308.   Greg Brock
    They are massaging his right shoulder...And he's out of the game.
    2007-04-09 14:20:23
    309.   s choir
    Looks like his shoulder.
    2007-04-09 14:20:29
    310.   Frip
    Looked like a slo-mo of an A-Team episode.
    2007-04-09 14:20:43
    311.   Jon Weisman
    Now he's coming off the field favoring his shoulder.
    2007-04-09 14:21:19
    312.   Vishal
    [301] mine's in my stomach.
    2007-04-09 14:22:25
    313.   underdog
    They were holding his shoulder, more for precautionary reasons, it seems... He looks better than he did a few moments ago.
    2007-04-09 14:23:12
    314.   Bob Timmermann
    Mr. Loney, please report to the white courtesy phone. Mr. James Loney.
    2007-04-09 14:23:21
    315.   Greg Brock
    Valdez would have had him dead to rights at the plate. Even after he bumbled it.

    Dude would have been out.

    2007-04-09 14:24:15
    316.   underdog
    Gosh, not the way you want your opening day to go so far is it?
    2007-04-09 14:24:26
    317.   Vishal
    i am not a fan of the electronic scoreboard. outfield walls should be padded.
    2007-04-09 14:25:27
    318.   D4P
    317
    I agree. I guess it's not just me, and I'm not the only one, who thinks the walls should be padded all the way around the outfield.
    2007-04-09 14:25:51
    319.   Andrew Shimmin
    We can't blame this on McCourt, for stripping the padding from the wall, and putting in that scoreboard, right? That'd be too much?
    2007-04-09 14:26:28
    320.   Andrew Shimmin
    Should have refreshed.
    2007-04-09 14:26:32
    321.   PHilldodger
    317
    I agree with you. Protect the players and have the outfield walls be padded. Or at least the same material all the way around.
    2007-04-09 14:27:04
    322.   Benaiah
    317 - I definitely agree. A little fan convenience is not as important as player safety. The absolutely worst news is an injury to Kemp. Get well soon big guy.
    2007-04-09 14:27:53
    323.   Greg Brock
    I disagree. That scoreboard looks awesome.

    Sorry. I just thought somebody should disagree.

    2007-04-09 14:28:46
    324.   Vishal
    this isn't even the first time it's happened to the dodgers. repko was injured on the scoreboard a year or two ago, if you guys remember.
    2007-04-09 14:29:05
    325.   underdog
    Jeff Schmidt vs. Jason Francis today, according to Vin.
    2007-04-09 14:29:46
    326.   Jon Weisman
    Schmidt about to throw his 80th pitch here in inning four.
    2007-04-09 14:30:19
    327.   Jon Weisman
    He's the new Brad Penny!
    2007-04-09 14:31:20
    328.   ToyCannon
    Can't imagine why anyone thinks multi million dollar players are more important than scoreboards on the outfield wall.
    2007-04-09 14:31:32
    329.   Gen3Blue
    Roster thought will never end. I sure hope Kemp has nothing serious, but he will recover and we have Ethier and Loney. I think we might not have all these long drives if Schmidt had his velocity. Or 75 pitches already.
    2007-04-09 14:32:13
    330.   Greg Brock
    328 See? ToyCannon gets it.

    That scoreboard really ties the room together.

    2007-04-09 14:32:32
    331.   Jon Weisman
    328 - Padding for Gonzalez and Pierre then. Kemp and Ethier don't qualify.
    2007-04-09 14:33:36
    332.   Frip
    325 - That's like correcting grandpa every time he calls the salt, pepper.
    2007-04-09 14:34:24
    333.   Vishal
    [331] kemp and either are definitely worth multi-millions. do you think the dodgers would trade either of them to another team in exchange for their annual salaries?
    2007-04-09 14:37:07
    334.   ToyCannon
    Besides it took the Dodgers 45 years to actually show the other scores going on in baseball. If they had to use that big thing in LF that they don't have a clue what to do with other then run commercials and the same vidio's over and over, it would require some out of the box thinking. Maybe when baby McCourt moves from Marketing to Baseball Operations we can expect some innovative ideas.
    2007-04-09 14:37:10
    335.   underdog
    332 It is, really, plus it's kinda cute. "Aww, Vin's mixed up again." He's still terrific.
    2007-04-09 14:37:19
    336.   Monterey Chris
    Another option is that Loney will stay in AAA and Valdez will stay with the team when Furcal returns.
    2007-04-09 14:38:08
    337.   ToyCannon
    333
    Humor Vishal, humor or have you not been reading Jon long enough.
    2007-04-09 14:38:37
    338.   Jon Weisman
    333 - You weren't taking me seriously, were you?
    2007-04-09 14:38:58
    339.   Vishal
    francis is scared of our little exxon valdez.
    2007-04-09 14:39:38
    340.   ToyCannon
    336
    Exactly, we can thank Kemp for solving the roster crisis and allowing us to keep the 3rd string infielder. Good times are upon us.
    2007-04-09 14:39:43
    341.   bigcpa
    A few people around here might suggest spikes on the LF and CF wall. I wouldn't go that far- maybe steel siding.
    2007-04-09 14:40:08
    342.   Vishal
    [338] oh, of course not! i just felt like making a point. another example of tone being hard to convey on the internet.
    2007-04-09 14:42:08
    343.   Jon Weisman
    Ground caused the fumble.
    2007-04-09 14:42:35
    344.   Greg Brock
    That's as close to a catch as one can get, without it actually being a catch.

    Yay ground!

    2007-04-09 14:42:59
    345.   Benaiah
    Well, the little engines that could just came through.
    2007-04-09 14:43:12
    346.   Eric Enders
    That was totally a catch. No doubt whatsoever IMO.
    2007-04-09 14:43:14
    347.   Greg Brock
    Big RsBI spot here for Schmidt. This is what we pay you for, big guy.
    2007-04-09 14:43:30
    348.   jasonungar05
    will they pitch AROUND schmidt to get to Pierre?
    2007-04-09 14:44:06
    349.   ToyCannon
    348
    Don't make me laugh so loud at work.
    2007-04-09 14:44:26
    350.   Vishal
    who HASN'T hit a homer off jeff weaver and jose lima?
    Show/Hide Comments 351-400
    2007-04-09 14:44:33
    351.   D4P
    will they pitch AROUND schmidt to get to Pierre?

    Nah, they want Pierre to lead off the next inning.

    2007-04-09 14:44:51
    352.   kngoworld
    Lots of called strikes that gameday shows outside the strike zone today for Francis.
    2007-04-09 14:45:28
    353.   Eric Enders
    I am so glad I missed the discussion about the stupid national anthem. As I see it it's an inherently political issue, so I couldn't have commented on it without a rule 5 violation anyway.
    2007-04-09 14:46:36
    354.   Daniel Zappala
    I hate when Schmidt fails to come through in the clutch.
    2007-04-09 14:47:17
    355.   Frip
    Regarding the Holliday dropped fly ball, I know the obvious reasons, but it's just weird when all of humanity cheers at someone's failure. Even the moms.
    2007-04-09 14:47:22
    356.   scareduck
    317 - i am not a fan of the electronic scoreboard. outfield walls should be padded.

    Two words: bubble wrap.

    2007-04-09 14:47:32
    357.   Andrew Shimmin
    Oh c'mon!
    2007-04-09 14:48:26
    358.   scareduck
    There goes the Dodgers' season.
    2007-04-09 14:48:27
    359.   Vishal
    the wheels are coming off the cart here.
    2007-04-09 14:48:28
    360.   jasonungar05
    your a one upper or a topper [351} lol
    2007-04-09 14:48:39
    361.   underdog
    Whee. This is a fun day for Stan Conte, so far.
    2007-04-09 14:48:44
    362.   Eric Enders
    Uh-oh. Nomar killed our $40 million pitcher.
    2007-04-09 14:48:49
    363.   s choir
    Hopefully just a cramp?
    2007-04-09 14:49:04
    364.   Benaiah
    What just happened?
    2007-04-09 14:49:19
    365.   Greg Brock
    I am so glad I missed the discussion about the stupid national anthem.

    Now we'll never know your opinion about the stupid national anthem.

    And that Luis Gonzales commercial is so cute. His press conference is adorable...He talks as though he's still a star player. It's just so precious. Lead us, Oh great one!

    2007-04-09 14:49:32
    366.   Benaiah
    Oh no. Nomar ran Schmidt over?
    2007-04-09 14:49:40
    367.   ToyCannon
    Even the Rockie announcers are starting to feel sorry for us.
    2007-04-09 14:49:43
    368.   jasonungar05
    what just happened, gameday is stuck on injury delay?
    2007-04-09 14:49:45
    369.   FirstMohican
    No hamstring cancer jokes.
    2007-04-09 14:49:55
    370.   scareduck
    364 - weird play at first that ended with Schmitty making a play at first and twisting something.
    2007-04-09 14:50:25
    371.   Greg Brock
    Don't worry, kids. Lurch is in to save the day.

    Please fall down. Just once.

    2007-04-09 14:50:58
    372.   scareduck
    Oh, Schmidt.
    2007-04-09 14:51:14
    373.   FirstMohican
    Lucky opening day goers get to see Hendrickson.

    The Rockies radio guys are substantially more listenable than the Angels TV pair.

    2007-04-09 14:51:20
    374.   ToyCannon
    Humma has to be happy his email never arrived.
    2007-04-09 14:51:25
    375.   thinkblue0
    ugh I was on the phone. What happened to Schmidt? Is it bad? Did it look bad?

    P.S. for anyone who cares, my first day of student teaching was a rousing success.

    2007-04-09 14:51:28
    376.   mannyman
    what is going on here???
    2007-04-09 14:51:47
    377.   Vishal
    [369] i'll admit, i laughed at that.
    2007-04-09 14:51:56
    378.   underdog
    What happened was the ground ball to first was bobbled by Nomar, then he recovered in time to lob it to Schmidt, too late to get the runner. Schmidt pulled a hamstring covering first. Fun for the whole family.
    2007-04-09 14:52:02
    379.   Andrew Shimmin
    369- You are a horrible human being.

    But that was funny.

    2007-04-09 14:52:37
    380.   Bob Timmermann
    Fans like the scoreboards on the outfield walls. They are pretty much considered standard features.

    I think the scoreboard has some give to it, but Kemp hit the top where it's harder.

    The Dodgers didn't pad the walls until 1991 when Darryl Strawberry hurt himself hitting the wall.

    I once ran headfirst into a gymnasium wall at full speed during a basketball game. My teammates reacted by taking the ball out of bounds and heading back upcourt.

    2007-04-09 14:52:53
    381.   ROC
    Please just take Russell Martin out of the game ASAP, it's not a safe day out there wearing blue.
    2007-04-09 14:52:59
    382.   ToyCannon
    368
    According to the Rockie anouncers, groundball to Nomar who fumbled then tossed to Schmidt who grabbed his hamstring after catching the ball. He has now been replaced by the Tall One.
    2007-04-09 14:53:11
    383.   Vishal
    [376] ground ball to first, schmidt tried to cover first base, but as he got to the bag he came up lame with what looks like a pulled hamstring. nomar booted the ball for a second, but i don't think the injury is his fault.
    2007-04-09 14:53:12
    384.   thinkblue0
    could this be a time to get Tomko some work? Or is he starting tomorrow?
    2007-04-09 14:53:17
    385.   underdog
    It looks like it's a small thing but it's the kind of nagging injury that could dog a player all year. This is basically the reason the Giants shied away from Schmidt, all these little injuries.
    2007-04-09 14:53:21
    386.   Greg Brock
    375 I care...Congrats. Have a good time.
    2007-04-09 14:53:38
    387.   Vishal
    [384] we're getting hendrickson.
    2007-04-09 14:53:45
    388.   underdog
    Tomko's starting tomorrow.

    Your favorite long reliever is in now.

    2007-04-09 14:54:05
    389.   Frip
    365 - Know what you mean, but what they do with his image isn't Gonzo's fault.
    2007-04-09 14:54:08
    390.   ToyCannon
    Only Pierre and Gonzo will be left standing by the end of the day.
    2007-04-09 14:54:45
    391.   Daniel Zappala
    380 Now we know why Bob's a librarian.
    2007-04-09 14:54:57
    392.   Vishal
    [380] did they score?
    2007-04-09 14:55:07
    393.   ToyCannon
    And Valdez and Martinez
    2007-04-09 14:55:10
    394.   Daniel Zappala
    390 That's the ultimate DT karma.
    2007-04-09 14:55:27
    395.   underdog
    Yeah, all we need now is Martin and Kent colliding on a pop-up, and then imploding like a Spinal Tap drummer.
    2007-04-09 14:55:33
    396.   jujibee
    According to radio (Dodger broadcast) Kemp has a "sore" shoulder and is being taken in for x-rays as we speak, just as a pre-cautionary measure.
    2007-04-09 14:56:10
    397.   Greg Brock
    I must say, I am disturbed by the lack of Easter Bonnets in the crowd today.

    It's like people don't even care about Vin...Nobody's heart is getting blessed today.

    2007-04-09 14:56:47
    398.   underdog
    And Martin just threw a ball into centerfield on the runner trying to steal second. Very smart baserunning to try to steal right away. Alas.
    2007-04-09 14:57:23
    399.   Sam DC
    ((heads back to his hole muttering))
    2007-04-09 14:57:31
    400.   D4P
    397
    For some reason, Easter is celebrated on the day when Jesus was still dead, rather than on the day on which he rose
    Show/Hide Comments 401-450
    2007-04-09 14:57:38
    401.   Andrew Shimmin
    Pierre did that on purpose. He's sick of people making fun of his arm.
    2007-04-09 14:57:54
    402.   underdog
    Pierre just made a diving catch on a ball that probably didn't need a diving catch. But it looked spectatcular. Unfortunately, the runner scored on the SF.
    2007-04-09 14:57:55
    403.   Gen3Blue
    I can't take much more. Make roster spaces--yes, but the wrong D's are going down.
    I thought Pierre hurt himself on that poor play---but of course not.
    2007-04-09 14:58:05
    404.   natepurcell
    pierre has almost been as bad as kenny lofton in the outfield.
    2007-04-09 14:59:11
    405.   scareduck
    If this game takes out Pierre, we'll call it even, okay God?
    2007-04-09 14:59:18
    406.   thinkblue0
    I would absolutely love to see Francis out of this game and get into the Rox pen. Let's hope Pierre and Russell can work the count a bit.
    2007-04-09 15:00:06
    407.   Eric Enders
    Pierre has the whole Kenny Lofton "run in when it's hit over your head/run back when it's hit in front of you" thing down pat.

    Enough of the Keystyone Kops routine already, Dodgers. Let's play baseball now.

    2007-04-09 15:00:17
    408.   FirstMohican
    The Rockies announcer just said Taveras manufactured a run with his speed and, after chuckling, said "and took a pitcher out of the game". He may have chuckled before saying that.
    2007-04-09 15:00:24
    409.   Bob Timmermann
    392
    I was trying to block a layup. I failed.

    The adults supervising the game came on the court and stopped the action. I was given an icepack.

    I was left with a bump on my head and an intense dislike of Frank Robinson.

    2007-04-09 15:00:45
    410.   Marty
    380 In 4th grade I was running down the basketball court looking back for a pass and ran head-first into the pole. I woke up in the nurse's office.
    2007-04-09 15:00:51
    411.   Daniel Zappala
    Hey, the Dodgers are only down by two runs, and they have the top of the order coming up...
    2007-04-09 15:01:18
    412.   Vishal
    BJ not looking so shabby in relief, aside from completely forgetting about the inherited runner.
    2007-04-09 15:01:21
    413.   underdog
    Gotta say, Hendy pitched well. Rockies shouldn't have had a run in that inning at all, Nomar should have handled the ground ball. The runner stole 2nd and took 3rd on the throwing error, then Pierre has a noodle arm.
    2007-04-09 15:01:23
    414.   D4P
    400
    I take that back. I always get confused about "on the third day" meaning two days later.
    2007-04-09 15:02:53
    415.   Greg Brock
    414 Don't sweat it. That book I read says Jesus is a pretty forgiving guy.

    You know, that one book...

    2007-04-09 15:03:55
    416.   thinkblue0
    Pierre...usually can't get it out of the infield, and when he does can't get it over anyone's head. Frustrating.
    2007-04-09 15:04:21
    417.   Eric Enders
    So, what freaky thing will happen in Martin's at-bat? A peregrine falcon will fly into the stadium and claw his eye out?
    2007-04-09 15:04:26
    418.   Bob Timmermann
    414
    I don't know who the timekeeper is for your soul, but I'd be worried.
    2007-04-09 15:04:42
    419.   thinkblue0
    nice easy walk for Martin...cmon Nomah.
    2007-04-09 15:04:53
    420.   Daniel Zappala
    414 My scouts were just asking me about that on our weekend campout. If you have to ask why we discussed that topic during a scout camp, you don't know how scouts work in Utah.
    2007-04-09 15:04:58
    421.   ToyCannon
    D4P taking on the Anthem and the Catholics in the same day that we lose two players, probably just a coincidence...
    2007-04-09 15:05:02
    422.   Vishal
    pierre 2007 first 30PA: 4H, 1BB, 25 outs.

    what is this "shirtsleeve crowd" business that vin keeps bringing up?

    2007-04-09 15:05:02
    423.   natepurcell
    make up for the error nomar.
    2007-04-09 15:05:30
    424.   Greg Brock
    If Pierre batted eighth and made 5 million dollars over two years, I wouldn't have much of a problem with him. Furcal/Martin top of the lineup would be very much nice.
    2007-04-09 15:06:12
    425.   thinkblue0
    422-

    I really can't wait till Furcal is back.

    2007-04-09 15:07:03
    426.   thinkblue0
    watching Francis throw looping curveballs for six innings is one of the most irritating things on the planet.
    2007-04-09 15:07:23
    427.   blue22
    422 - He's hit into at least one DP this year too, right? Not that I'm counting or anything...
    2007-04-09 15:07:27
    428.   Vishal
    did anyone catch martin's at-bat music, btw?
    2007-04-09 15:07:38
    429.   underdog
    Ugh, what is with Nomar so far?

    (Rhyme not intended.)

    2007-04-09 15:08:33
    430.   ToyCannon
    Schmidt is day to day.

    It is the night to night we have to worry about.

    2007-04-09 15:08:37
    431.   Bob Timmermann
    422
    Vin still thinks that all the men wear white shirts and straw boaters to the games.
    2007-04-09 15:09:17
    432.   thinkblue0
    UGH.

    Please somehow get Francis out of this game. Next inning SHOULD figure to be his last one.

    2007-04-09 15:09:22
    433.   natepurcell
    429

    inevitable decline?

    2007-04-09 15:10:03
    434.   Daniel Zappala
    429 He's started taking the first pitch.
    2007-04-09 15:10:05
    435.   blue22
    432 - He's up fourth this inning, and is at 92 pitches.
    2007-04-09 15:10:35
    436.   underdog
    433 There's that.

    I wish he and Loney could just split the first base duties 50-50. Maybe they will before the season's over.

    2007-04-09 15:10:42
    437.   scareduck
    431 - given Vinny's age, that may well be what he sees.
    2007-04-09 15:11:16
    438.   ToyCannon
    Kent is inevitable decline, Nomar is just slow getting untracked. Last April was unusual for him.
    2007-04-09 15:11:59
    439.   Frip
    422 - Vin seems to think that shirt sleeves are the same color as baseballs. Or human arms are baseball colored. Or vice versa.
    2007-04-09 15:12:19
    440.   Eric Enders
    428 It's still Kanye West's "Touch the Sky" which is the same song from last year.
    2007-04-09 15:13:23
    441.   underdog
    "Schmidt is already feeling better" - they were just being cautious. (According to Vin.) No word on Kemp's X-Ray. Fingers crossed.
    2007-04-09 15:13:43
    442.   Vishal
    ah. thanks eric.
    2007-04-09 15:14:18
    443.   Greg Brock
    Juan Pierre and Alfonso Soriana are neck and neck in outs made in this young season.
    2007-04-09 15:14:42
    444.   Greg Brock
    Soriano is actually ahead of this Soriana fellow I made up.
    2007-04-09 15:14:47
    445.   Vishal
    [439] fortunately (and unfortunately) most people don't dress that nicely anymore really. our general standards of decorum have declined considerably.
    2007-04-09 15:15:15
    446.   s choir
    Hendrickson is painting the corners.
    2007-04-09 15:15:27
    447.   Eric Enders
    445 Maybe the verb is "changed" and not "declined," though.
    2007-04-09 15:16:07
    448.   thinkblue0
    I'll give Hendy some props. He doesn't look half bad right now.

    GAH! They're sending Francis back out to hit.

    2007-04-09 15:16:23
    449.   natepurcell
    who is this man on the mound?
    2007-04-09 15:16:24
    450.   Bob Timmermann
    If I find a straw boater, I'm wearing it to Dodger Stadium.
    Show/Hide Comments 451-500
    2007-04-09 15:16:28
    451.   underdog
    Mark Hendrickson, staff ace.
    2007-04-09 15:17:08
    452.   blue22
    Mike Hampton is out for the year (again). More shocking is that he still has one year left on The Contract.
    2007-04-09 15:17:16
    453.   Eric Enders
    So with Billingsley struggling last night and Jesus having arisen today, I wonder if the role of Schmidt's replacement will go to Hendrickson?
    2007-04-09 15:17:20
    454.   Andrew Shimmin
    The drum machine part is Kanye West. The tune is Curtis Mayfield.
    2007-04-09 15:17:24
    455.   ToyCannon
    The Tall One displaying the strikout pitch that has evaded all of our starters. Go figure.
    2007-04-09 15:17:39
    456.   Greg Brock
    All you silly sabermetricians and stathead goofballs.

    Mark Hendrickson should start. I've always said this.

    2007-04-09 15:18:20
    457.   Daniel Zappala
    It's not so bad ... still a two run deficit and our leading home run hitter, good young player, and dazzling sub are coming up.
    2007-04-09 15:18:45
    458.   ToyCannon
    450
    When did the ushers stop wearing the straw hats?
    2007-04-09 15:19:05
    459.   Eric Enders
    454 Indeed. It's a Kanye West song, but the part they play is almost entirely a Curtis Mayfield sample ("Move On Up"). Which is awesome.
    2007-04-09 15:19:56
    460.   Vishal
    [447] is it? can you argue that we are just as decorous, but simply in a different way?
    2007-04-09 15:21:14
    461.   Eric Enders
    That sounded like a bit of "Buffalo Soldier" as Gonzalez's batting music. Maybe this guy isn't so bad after all.
    2007-04-09 15:21:32
    462.   Greg Brock
    460 Suits are going the way of the Dodo.

    And I, for one, welcome our casual dress overlords.

    2007-04-09 15:21:44
    463.   Bob Timmermann
    458
    The ushers switched uniforms about 2-3 years ago. It was one of the first McCourt changes. They did it after the All-Star Break.

    I believe Plaschke was agin' it.

    2007-04-09 15:23:05
    464.   ToyCannon
    Yes, I miss cool hats but the tie thing was and still is a bizarre fashion choice.
    2007-04-09 15:23:33
    465.   underdog
    Except that they're playing opening day, he had a good day yesterday, and it's turned into the Hurt Bowl, I'm still not sure why Gonzo started today. Lefty pitcher, no success against him, 6 straight starts... etc. Sigh.
    2007-04-09 15:24:01
    466.   Frip
    Casual is one thing.
    2007-04-09 15:24:30
    467.   underdog
    And now MLBTV has upped and died.

    Maybe not such a big loss.

    2007-04-09 15:24:52
    468.   ToyCannon
    460
    Yes, I miss the cool hats but the tie was and is a bizarre fashion choice for much to long.
    2007-04-09 15:25:32
    469.   ToyCannon
    I'll go under my rock now.
    2007-04-09 15:26:10
    470.   Bob Timmermann
    469
    I don't think the women liked the skirts and boots all that much.
    2007-04-09 15:26:22
    471.   Greg Brock
    I can see no point in wearing a necktie, unless a reduction in blood flow to the carotid artery somehow improves productivity.

    Dress shirts good, ties bad. TIES BAD!

    2007-04-09 15:27:35
    472.   Eric Enders
    The man can do no wrong.
    2007-04-09 15:27:48
    473.   Bob Timmermann
    I wore a tie Saturday.

    On my day off!

    2007-04-09 15:30:44
    474.   Daniel Zappala
    471 If you wear them enough, you build up neck calluses that help you deal with this problem.
    2007-04-09 15:31:13
    475.   skybluestoday
    I hate ties.

    I pretty much hate anything that decorum oh-so-politely "suggests" I wear.

    Perhaps needless to say, this doesn't go over so well with my girlfriend now that I'm nine months shy of 40.

    2007-04-09 15:31:16
    476.   Vishal
    ...and mlb.tv goes down too.
    2007-04-09 15:31:55
    477.   underdog
    So I guess that's it for Hendrickson? Gotta give him some props - pitched like an ace today.
    2007-04-09 15:32:50
    478.   Marty
    Ties aren't that difficult. All you have to do is buy a shirt with the right neck size.
    2007-04-09 15:32:50
    479.   Frip
    473 - That's just weird.
    2007-04-09 15:33:12
    480.   underdog
    476 meet 467 and join my club of Cursing at MLBTV/What Did I Pay For Again.
    2007-04-09 15:33:16
    481.   Greg Brock
    Neck calluses...Where do I sign up for that?

    Once you've worn a military uniform for four years, you refuse to wear anything uncomfortable again. At least, I have. Polos and dress shirts, top button undone, sleeves rolled up. That's formal work attire!

    2007-04-09 15:34:17
    482.   Daniel Zappala
    Still two more innings left, and the Dodgers are down by only two runs. And ... well, I'm not too high on the batters coming up.
    2007-04-09 15:34:32
    483.   Jon Weisman
    And now Andy Barker has been canceled.

    http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117962708.html?categoryid=14&cs=1

    2007-04-09 15:35:16
    484.   underdog
    Let's go Bradyson Clarko!
    2007-04-09 15:35:27
    485.   underdog
    ...or not.

    Sigh.

    2007-04-09 15:35:49
    486.   Greg Brock
    483 We knew it wasn't going to last, didn't we?
    2007-04-09 15:36:05
    487.   underdog
    483 Rats! How does that get canceled so quickly and The War at Home is still on the air?
    2007-04-09 15:36:24
    488.   Eric Enders
    I go to great lengths to avoid wearing ties. I usually don't even put them on for weddings, graduations, etc. I've worn a tie twice in the last six years, one was at a banquet where I was supposed to receive an award, the other at a wedding I officiated.
    2007-04-09 15:36:49
    489.   underdog
    Okay, Pierre legged out a double, give him credit for hustle and Hawpe credit for making that so close.
    2007-04-09 15:37:09
    490.   Daniel Zappala
    I have friends who wear a tie 6 days a week (to work and to church). It's really not that bad. On the list of things that are bad, ties do not even begin to approach Billy Packer or Dick Vitale.
    2007-04-09 15:38:06
    491.   Daniel Zappala
    one was at a banquet where I was supposed to receive an award

    Does that mean you didn't receive the award after all and it was all for naught?

    2007-04-09 15:38:25
    492.   s choir
    Pierre got to second fast! The way Hawpe fielded that, I thought he'd be held to a single for sure.
    2007-04-09 15:39:40
    493.   Eric Enders
    491 No, I did. But it may have been for naught, since afterward I was left with the feeling that I could have gotten away without wearing one.
    2007-04-09 15:39:55
    494.   chazmac138
    487.
    Hello? How are shows like "According to Jim" still on the air when quality (genius) comedy shows like Arrested Development get axed? It's like bizzaro world.
    2007-04-09 15:43:53
    495.   Greg Brock
    I think the most important thing in all of this is that we're spelling "canceled" with one L.

    Bravo, people. Bravo.

    2007-04-09 15:44:22
    496.   underdog
    494 Well, we could probably rewrite that sentence 30 times with different shows, sadly. That new movie The TV Set is kind of about that - the stupidity and fickleness of TV programming.
    2007-04-09 15:45:17
    497.   underdog
    495 Hey, I have a Master's degree, I no how to spel!
    2007-04-09 15:45:24
    498.   Bob Timmermann
    495
    Tell it to these guys:
    http://www.brilliantbutcancelled.com/
    2007-04-09 15:49:53
    499.   underdog
    This Baker guy's a real pest. Would be nice to get him out for once.
    2007-04-09 15:50:44
    500.   Vishal
    [499] not gonna do it.
    Show/Hide Comments 501-550
    2007-04-09 15:51:20
    501.   underdog
    Instead of confusing Seanez with Saenz, like GameDay often does, I keep confusing him with Baez. For some reason.
    2007-04-09 15:51:55
    502.   fan 4 40 plus
    Seanez is establishing a bad pattern, get the 1st guy out and then ...
    2007-04-09 15:53:06
    503.   jasonungar05
    Anyone catch the sopranos last night or should we not talk about it?

    If you all had to guess? How will the show end

    1. Tony goes to jail
    2. Tony is killed
    3. Tony flips to informant.
    4. It will end with nothing resolved.
    5. Other (something happens, just not one of the 4 above)

    2007-04-09 15:53:40
    504.   scareduck
    Moron Delay.
    2007-04-09 15:53:42
    505.   underdog
    Does GameDay have a way of recreating when a crazy fool goes running onto the field? 'Cause that's what just happened.
    2007-04-09 15:54:07
    506.   Jon Weisman
    503 - Just FYI, there's a thread dedicated to the Sopranos at Screen Jam.
    2007-04-09 15:54:32
    507.   Frip
    At least he was naked.
    2007-04-09 15:54:53
    508.   underdog
    When do we get to replace Seanez with Meloan?
    2007-04-09 15:55:53
    509.   Eric Enders
    I for one would appreciate no Sopranos spoilers.

    So, any guesses as to how long Seanez remains on the team?

    2007-04-09 15:56:29
    510.   Gen3Blue
    Good, Biemel may face a moment of truth and I truly wish him well. But he will have to live with it.
    2007-04-09 15:56:47
    511.   s choir
    503 How about, Tony has a nervous breakdown and ends up catatonic in a mental hospital.
    2007-04-09 15:56:54
    512.   underdog
    Boy, that pitch really didn't miss at all. But Seanez is still struggling.
    2007-04-09 15:56:58
    513.   Greg Brock
    Lance Carter approves of Rudy Seanez's performance.
    2007-04-09 15:57:43
    514.   Vishal
    hahah, i love the way vinny said, "and a poor throw" on pierre's rainbow to the plate.
    2007-04-09 15:57:48
    515.   jasonungar05
    I'll head to Screen Jam after the game...thanks..forget I brought it up!!
    2007-04-09 15:57:57
    516.   underdog
    Predictably, Pierre makes a noodle throw and the run scores on the sac fly.

    Can't we have a DT* come in and play along side Pierre? (*designated thrower)

    2007-04-09 15:58:03
    517.   scareduck
    Juan for the Rockies!
    2007-04-09 15:58:04
    518.   Eric Enders
    507 I was wondering about that, since the crowd reaction was a lot more raucous than it would be for your usual moron on the field. I guess Vin missed his opportunity for a David Niven moment.

    And now, Kemp's injury costs us a second run.

    2007-04-09 15:59:32
    519.   Eric Enders
    507 I was wondering about that, since the crowd reaction was a lot more raucous than it would be for your usual moron on the field. I guess Vin missed his opportunity for a David Niven moment.

    And now, Kemp's injury costs us a second run.

    2007-04-09 16:00:16
    520.   Eric Enders
    That wasn't my fault, I swear!
    2007-04-09 16:00:16
    521.   Daniel Zappala
    Maybe Vin Scully reads DT?
    2007-04-09 16:01:16
    522.   Gen3Blue
    Another run for Pierre.
    That has to be one of the most thoughtless contracts of the new century. But I kind of like Colleti and I wonder what happened in those few weeks to addle him so. I understand when Drew made his snakey betrayal, but I don't think they were connected in time. Does anyone remember.
    2007-04-09 16:01:39
    523.   Frip
    Soon Colletti is going to have to start answering for Pierre signing, like, on camera.
    2007-04-09 16:01:52
    524.   Jon Weisman
    Kemp certainly was no better in the sun today than Luis Gonzalez was in Milwaukee.
    2007-04-09 16:05:55
    525.   Greg Brock
    524 Kemp made a juggling grab and hurt himself on a catch no reasonable person could expect him to make.

    Gonzales's performance in Milwaukee was, well, not the same.

    2007-04-09 16:07:14
    526.   underdog
    Does anybody else feel like this game was over 4 innings ago? Just from a vibe/mojo feeling, and the general inertia of their offense...
    2007-04-09 16:08:55
    527.   Frip
    It's only a few games into the season and this team already sort of bugs me.
    2007-04-09 16:10:51
    528.   Greg Brock
    527 You shouldn't be so bugged. The team isn't going to be bad. It's just not going to be as good as I, and others, think it could be with Loney, Kemp, Billz, etc. Gonzales is not that bothersome, and the pitching staff is solid if unspectacular.

    The center fielder just makes me a Sad Panda.

    2007-04-09 16:12:26
    529.   JoeyP
    Beimel finally got nabbed for a balk.
    2007-04-09 16:15:27
    530.   Eric Enders
    525 Not to mention which, he almost made the tremendous catch.

    I wonder if the lack of news on Kemp yet is a bad sign.

    2007-04-09 16:18:14
    531.   underdog
    520 Naw, it takes awhile to get X-Rays back. I certainly hope it's not bad news...

    This team really just needs Furcal back in the line-up, the Giants series notwithstanding.

    2007-04-09 16:18:56
    532.   trainwreck
    The truth is that the Giants are just that bad.
    2007-04-09 16:19:54
    533.   Daniel Zappala
    Furcal in the lineup and somebody at 3B who can hit. Too many holes in the lineup right now.
    2007-04-09 16:19:58
    534.   underdog
    Well, Ethier keeps hope alive.
    2007-04-09 16:20:25
    535.   JoeyP
    I doubt Kemp broke any bones.
    But hopefully he gets an MRI to make sure there's no damage to his shoulder.
    2007-04-09 16:20:28
    536.   Bob Timmermann
    531
    If this were "House", they'd already have a diagnosis!

    It would be wrong and they would almost kill Kemp with some treatment for a rare bacterial condition.

    Then someone would rush in at the end and say, "You know, I think we just need to put ice on that!"

    2007-04-09 16:21:06
    537.   underdog
    Honestly, just as we shouldn't evaluate the team solely based on the Giants series, I wouldn't evaluate them solely based on today's game either. The Rockies pitched well. yes, they need Furcal back and more pop at 3rd. But they're gonna hit.
    2007-04-09 16:21:17
    538.   underdog
    Like now.
    2007-04-09 16:22:02
    539.   Daniel Zappala
    Some Saenz of hope.
    2007-04-09 16:22:22
    540.   underdog
    Saenz in for Martinez. Does that mean he plays 3rd if by some miracle this game extended?
    2007-04-09 16:23:10
    541.   blue22
    540 - Betemit is still on the bench.
    2007-04-09 16:24:02
    542.   blue22
    541 - In fact, Betemit probably gets the next PH AB.
    2007-04-09 16:24:23
    543.   natepurcell
    haha, exciting!
    2007-04-09 16:24:40
    544.   underdog
    Holy cow, bases loaded, nobody out, against Fuentes. Just goes toshowya.

    Lieberthal's up to pinch hit.

    2007-04-09 16:24:42
    545.   Gen3Blue
    530 I doubt it means anything; has anyone you know tried to get through an emergency room in less than 4 hours lately?
    2007-04-09 16:25:08
    546.   Jon Weisman
    537 - Absolutely. Just one game.
    2007-04-09 16:25:14
    547.   Daniel Zappala
    This would be a really nice time for Lieberthal to pull a Marlon Anderson.
    2007-04-09 16:25:17
    548.   JoeyP
    They must really not like Betemit against LHP..

    Goin to Mike Liebertal.

    2007-04-09 16:25:25
    549.   overkill94
    This is one of those situations where the left-handedness of our bench can hurt. I wish we could pinch-hit for Pierre, but all that's left are Betemit and Merlin.
    2007-04-09 16:25:40
    550.   Daniel Zappala
    Or a Robin Ventura.
    Show/Hide Comments 551-600
    2007-04-09 16:25:53
    551.   scareduck
    Odds on Lieberthal tapping into a 6-4-3 GIDP and drives in a run without credit?
    2007-04-09 16:26:21
    552.   imperabo
    536 House would already have taken a brain biopsy.
    2007-04-09 16:26:28
    553.   Daniel Zappala
    Clearly the plan is to walk everyone until they get to face Pierre.
    2007-04-09 16:27:15
    554.   underdog
    551 Dibs on "popping up to 3rd."
    2007-04-09 16:27:45
    555.   Eric Enders
    I didn't realize the infield fly rule could be called on a foul ball. That makes absolutely no sense.
    2007-04-09 16:27:50
    556.   underdog
    C'mon Pierre, redeem yourself in all of our eyes!
    2007-04-09 16:28:16
    557.   JoeyP
    Pierre swings at the 1st pitch
    2007-04-09 16:28:41
    558.   Frip
    OK Pierre, all will be forgiven.
    2007-04-09 16:28:50
    559.   Bob Timmermann
    There is no infield fly rule on foul balls.
    2007-04-09 16:29:13
    560.   Greg S
    555. It was right on the line so it makes sense to call it in case it is fair... for all the reasons they call it when it's definitely fair.
    2007-04-09 16:29:24
    561.   Vishal
    well, with pierre at the plate, at least we don't have to worry about a rally-killing home run.
    2007-04-09 16:30:48
    562.   overkill94
    That was actually a pretty decent at-bat for Pierre. Now it's up to my boy Russ!
    2007-04-09 16:31:01
    563.   Vishal
    out #26.
    2007-04-09 16:31:32
    564.   underdog
    Not a bad at bat by Pierre actually. That one was flared decently, got the run home, not what I would have hoped for but better than anticipated.
    2007-04-09 16:31:35
    565.   Jonny6
    So JP gets his first Dodger RBI, and its still a negative outcome.
    2007-04-09 16:32:09
    566.   trainwreck
    I did not know Sidney Ponson could grow hair.
    2007-04-09 16:32:12
    567.   JoeyP
    Russ gave it a good try.
    2007-04-09 16:32:49
    568.   underdog
    So the Dodgers have lost 5 of their last 6 home openers? That's getting to be as much a given as Derek Lowe getting shelled on opening day, home or road. Ah well. Go get 'em tomorrow.
    2007-04-09 16:32:54
    569.   Eric Enders
    559 Tell it to the 3B ump.
    2007-04-09 16:33:55
    570.   Frip
    That weird national anthem lady was a bad omen. Seriously. She was depressing and witchy.
    2007-04-09 16:34:46
    571.   Greg S
    I would think that AB by Pierre would make DTers angry. He makes an out but it doesn't count against him since it brings home a (nearly) worthless run while doing nothing else. I have wanted to be as patient as possible with the JP signing but he is as hard to watch as advertised. I think the team is fine but I think we will win despite him not because of him.
    2007-04-09 16:35:01
    572.   Eric Enders
    So, she was a Witchy Woman?
    2007-04-09 16:35:35
    573.   Monterey Chris
    569

    The umps call for the infield fly if it is close to being fair or foul. It then does not apply if the ball is foul.

    2007-04-09 16:37:08
    574.   Greg S
    Didn't the wall where Kemp banged into it have padding in the past where it now has a hard screen for advertising?
    2007-04-09 16:37:34
    575.   Greg Brock
    Witchy isn't always bad. Stevie Nicks is witchy.

    Hmmmm....Nicks....

    2007-04-09 16:38:25
    576.   StolenMonkey86
    Opening Day this year reminded me way too much of when the penguins finally reached Antarctica in "Madagascar."
    2007-04-09 16:40:05
    577.   Bob Timmermann
    574
    The fence had a scoreboard in the same place last year as you can see in one of the photos here:
    http://tinyurl.com/3xmfko

    They just changed what it displays.

    2007-04-09 16:43:29
    578.   Jon Weisman
    571 - The game was still alive - I'm not going to call it a worthless run.

    575 - Witch-ay woman!

    2007-04-09 16:47:11
    579.   Greg S
    577. Yeah but wouldn't it be more fun to complain that it was McCourt's fault for making more money at the expense of his players' health? Seriously, they should have padding on the wall before any kind of screen.

    578- Really? You'd take a sac fly in that situation? Down by 4 with the bases loaded and one out, it seems to me it is almsot exactly the same as a strikeout.

    2007-04-09 16:49:18
    580.   overkill94
    571 At least it was hit semi-hard and almost fell for a bases clearing double (or triple) though it may have been foul anyway. That added to the fact that Fuentes is pretty tough on lefties and I wasn't mad about his SF.

    Won't it make the most sense to put Kemp on the DL to give Valdez some more time to prove himself? If he stays hot, maybe we could even get something decent in a trade.

    2007-04-09 16:49:26
    581.   Bob Timmermann
    579
    On a strikeout, no one would have scored.
    2007-04-09 16:50:04
    582.   Greg S
    578 To be fair, you didn't say you'd take it, you just said it wasn't a wothless run. But my point remains the same. It was one time when a sac fly was of no help.
    2007-04-09 16:51:10
    583.   ROC
    577 - they also removed the rubberized chain-link fence that was in front of last year's scoreboard. It may have provided a least minor cushioning* compared to the plexiglass thee now.

    *I can't say for sure as they've only had "run the bases" promotions and never the much desired "bang your head against the wall" pre-game fan activity AFAIK.

    2007-04-09 16:52:32
    584.   Greg S
    581. Well that's great for a yearly run total but as for the goal of winning the game, I don't see how it brought us closer than a stirkeout would have (that being none closer).
    2007-04-09 16:52:42
    585.   underdog
    Any word on Kemp yet?
    2007-04-09 16:53:31
    586.   Jon Weisman
    582 - Thanks, that is all I said.
    2007-04-09 16:53:45
    587.   underdog
    It brought us one run closer. If Martin had doubled or something, more runs come in, you know... it ends up making a difference. It ended up not meaning anything but during the game it could have. I don't see how that's the same as striking out.
    2007-04-09 16:54:13
    588.   Jon Weisman
    If anyone wants to follow along, here's a McMillin Old Style Gameday link for Edwin Jackson's start.

    http://tinyurl.com/2xq6xz

    2007-04-09 16:55:49
    589.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
    A run's a run. By definition, it brings us one run closer. That's why it's a run. Saying otherwise is like that infamous moment during the WS I think when McCarver claimed that a lead-off walk in the ninth inning was the same as a home run. It isn't. One's a walk, one's a home run.

    WWSH

    2007-04-09 16:56:23
    590.   Rob M
    Just got home from the game. I was sitting on the field level down the right field line and had a good view of Kemp crashing into the wall. It was scary to see the way he was holding his right arm as he left the field, but he seemed to have a full range of motion so I'm hoping it isn't anything serious. Kemp didn't look too smooth in general with fly balls out there but the sun was in his eyes to be fair. Seeing Pierre NOT throw out the runner at the plate (not even close in fact) on that very, very shallow fly to center (any more shallow and it would have been Kent's ball) was depressing. The crowd was really rowdy and spirited at the start of the game. Too bad the Dodgers couldn't send them home happy.
    2007-04-09 17:00:05
    591.   Nagman
    The latest from Steiner --

    Kemp has a contusion. Schmidts appears to just be a cramp.

    2007-04-09 17:00:18
    592.   Greg S
    587. I suppose there's no reason to go on but I will point out that if he had stuck out and Martin doubled the exact same amount of runs would have scored. Hard to come up with the hypothetical situation where the sac fly would have helped more than the strikeout.
    2007-04-09 17:01:11
    593.   Greg Brock
    I have to believe that all the questions being asked of Grady (about Juan Pierre) are a result of blogs. Most mainstream journalists (I'm looking at YOU, Plaschke) didn't say boo when the Dodgers signed him. Stark was curious, Olney had doubts, and Keith Law absolutely trashed the signing, but the greatest criticism came from the Philosopher King and others.

    Juan Pierregate is already in full swing. And I love it.

    2007-04-09 17:04:17
    594.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
    Re: 91

    I'm no doctor, but I assume that's better than something like a separated shoulder. Hopefully he won't need any DL time.

    WWSH

    2007-04-09 17:05:06
    595.   Wayne Wei-siang Hsieh
    Re: 593

    It's telling that Olney wasn't thrilled with the signing--Mr. "Productive Out."

    WWSH

    2007-04-09 17:05:26
    596.   OaklandAs
    587 The Sacrifice Fly doesn't help you in the 9th inning, because the tying run did not get any closer, and a valuable out was used up. Whether Pierre hit a SF or struck out, the next batter (Martin) would still be the potential tying run.
    2007-04-09 17:06:08
    597.   Humma Kavula
    The run was not worthless.

    Before Pierre sacrificed, the win expectancy was .083.

    After he sacrificed, the win expectancy was .046.

    2007-04-09 17:06:33
    598.   Bob Timmermann
    Plaschke did not write about the Juan Pierre signing when it happened.
    2007-04-09 17:08:09
    599.   Greg S
    593 I fully agree. The Times they are a changing. With newapapers printing the likes of Plashke and Simers, more and more inteligent readers are going to the blogs for inteligent information (plus discourse) and the papers are starting to play catch up by going there themselves. And I agree that Juan Pierre is the first galring evidence that this is so.
    2007-04-09 17:08:48
    600.   Humma Kavula
    597 Of course, I should mention that we're working with small sample sizes here... only about 100 games where the home team was down by four in the ninth with one out and the bases jammed.
    Show/Hide Comments 601-650
    2007-04-09 17:10:41
    601.   Greg S
    597- ????? so you mean it had worth to the Rockies?
    2007-04-09 17:11:05
    602.   OaklandAs
    597 Not sure what point you're trying to make - the win expectancy is lower after the SF. To compare, what would the win expectancy be if Pierre had struck out?
    2007-04-09 17:11:44
    603.   Jon Weisman
    New post up top.
    2007-04-09 17:12:17
    604.   underdog
    Contusion, whew. Now then, can you put someone on the DL with a noodle arm? It's kinda like a dead arm, right?
    2007-04-09 17:12:17
    605.   Jon Weisman
    Word of advice - you guys are talking in circles about the Pierre at-bat. Just let it go :)
    2007-04-09 17:12:37
    606.   Humma Kavula
    601 602 Just teasing a little. Sorry it was vague. I withdraw the comment.
    2007-04-09 17:13:44
    607.   underdog
    Yeah, I left for a work meeting, came back, and y'all were still talking about that at bat. Who cares? They didn't do diddly on offense most of today. They need Furcal back, they need Pierre to get on base more, mostly they need to go against someone other than Jeff Francis.

    Next!

    2007-04-09 20:28:58
    608.   Andrew Shimmin
    Grittle's getting questions about Pierre, not because of blogs, but because of @30 crummy at bats. If he were hitting .300, nobody would be saying anything. It's not progress, it's just a new way to be wrong.

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