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About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
10) being annoyed by the existence of this list
11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Our Top Stories Tonight ...
2007-04-10 22:45
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Sports

Brett Tomko was fantastic tonight, pitching six innings of one-hit ball (a drive to the wall that a good center fielder would have hauled in), walking three and striking out nine. Tomko has pitched well before and will pitch well again - the problem has always been that he hasn't been able to replicate it enough. And when he's bad, he can be quite bad. But he handled the heart of that Colorado lineup with aplomb.

Chad Billingsley disappointed in relief, allowing the Rockies to tie the game 1-1 in the seventh. But a few innings after the Dodgers blew their own bases-loaded opportunity, Joe Beimel served up a stuffed-sack surprise by inducing a 1-2-3 double play from Matt Holliday.

And then the guy whose name may become symbolic with heroism in Dodger annals, Russell Martin, bookended his first-inning run with an eighth-inning sacrifice fly (following a walk by Wilson Betemit and a single by Pierre). Twelve pitches by Takashi Saito later, the Dodgers had a taut if not tautological victory.

I don't know about you, folks, but I'm happy to be 5-3.

 


Traffic

It was fascinating, simply fascinating.

It took longer than ever to get from the parking payment booths to my eventual parking space before the game, and as short as ever to get out of the parking lot onto the freeway after the game.

To be fair, I hedged my bets a little on the departure, leaving with one out in the ninth. But to my great elation, the path between Lot L and the outer ring, often closed in recent years, was open, and I basically flew toward the downhill Downtown exit. To freedom.

The reason I hedged my bets was because of the bizarre gridlock I encountered upon my arrival. Going uphill at 6:50 p.m. to the parking kiosks was nothing unusual, but once I had handed over my season parking pass, I was stuck. General parking folk to my left cruised to their spots, but we weren't moving. On my right, the outer ring was completely closed off to traffic. And ahead of us, the inner ring was filled with cars, and it took nearly 15 minutes just go about 200 yards. It really wasn't working.

The two experiences led me to conclude that maybe, just maybe, the Dodgers might have the right idea by encouraging people to park close to where they are going to enter or exit, but they still need to allow people the freedom to freelance. But it was just one man's experience. Don't know how the people leaving after me fared.

Earlier today, the Times interviewed me for an article on Dodger Stadium parking (I haven't yet seen if I survived into the final version), and I think I probably came across as pessimistic, but I did try to stress that what I wrote on Dodger Thoughts earlier today - that while we couldn't know for sure whether the Dodgers' new parking plan would succeed or fail without giving it a chance, we did know that they need to be accountable. I think they're doing some things right and some things wrong. Hopefully, they can go the right direction from here.

Comments (227)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-04-10 23:09:33
1.   Bob Timmermann
Which column do I comment on first?

I'm confused!

I think the inner ring has parts closed off to create pathways for pedestrians.

2007-04-10 23:11:00
2.   FirstMohican
It helps when Dodger games don't end during rush hour, I guess.
2007-04-10 23:12:15
3.   das411
Oh no, I go a day without DT and I am 500 comments behind AND I missed a Thomas Nacc sighting!!!

Good thing I have a nice long 3 hour class tomorrow to do some catching up in...

JW, would you have left an ERIC GAGNE appearance with two outs to go?

2007-04-10 23:15:11
4.   Jon Weisman
3 - I'm not religious about staying until the end. It's all case-by-case.
2007-04-10 23:32:19
5.   LAT
Wow Jon is showing his split personality tonight. A box inside the article is old hat but a side by side splitter-impressive. How many other tricks does this guy have up his sleeve?
2007-04-10 23:34:58
6.   LAT
3 & 4. I'll say this. I'm not leaving an Armondo Benitez game early. No lead is safe with that guy. Didn't blow the save but he gave up two in the 9th tonight. This year, no Giant game is over till its over.
2007-04-10 23:37:05
7.   StolenMonkey86
at this rate we can start better than 7-7!
2007-04-10 23:37:07
8.   T Money
I was at yesterday's game and tonight's game. And in every way shape and form, tonight's parking experience was better. But I suppose that tells you nothing about the success or failure of the new system. What happens on Friday night (when I assume there'll be 50,000+) should be telling.

I still think one of the key problems, particularly when it comes to post-game traffic, is the pedestrian traffic across the roadways. I always wish for Las Vegas Blvd.-style overpasses that would allow pedestrians to walk over the roads. But I'm dreaming.

2007-04-10 23:37:57
9.   Ken Arneson
6 I was there tonight. My kids were hoping the Padres would tie it up so they could spend more time playing in the sandbox. Sorry, kids, Armando couldn't quite pull it off for you.
2007-04-10 23:39:35
10.   StolenMonkey86
I'm sure it's been addressed, but Gurnick reports Kemp had a "mild separation" of his right shoulder.

Manager Grady Little said Grade I separations -- the mildest of six classifications, meaning the ligaments are strained but not torn -- take from seven to 14 days recovery, although because the injury is to Kemp's throwing shoulder, that could mean longer.

"It's my throwing arm, and I don't want to pick up bad habits, so I'll take my time and let it heal 100 percent," said Kemp. "It's sore and stiff today. It could have been worse."

2007-04-10 23:43:05
11.   Bob Timmermann
Points to ponder:
1) Dodger Stadium's capacity is capped at 56,000 by the terms of a conditional use permit for the property issued by the City of Los Angeles
2) The 56,000 limit was put in place based in part upon what the City Zoning Commission thought that the parking lots and adjoining streets could handle.
3) Dodger Stadium has also had essentially the same number of parking spaces as it had when it opened. The same number of lots are there although some spaces were restriped to create more handicapped parking.
4) What then caused the amount of parking to no longer be able to meet the demand of people coming to the game? Are there fewer people per car entering the stadium? Did the City think back in 1962 more people would take the bus to the game?
2007-04-10 23:59:43
12.   Andrew Shimmin
Funny Blue Jays ad. Too funny for Canadian t.v., evidently. (no content warning)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMdelLmvUf0

2007-04-11 00:37:43
13.   Greg Brock
Oh goodness me..."I'll take some from Column A, some from Column B"

No, it isn't funny...At all. But it had to be done.

2007-04-11 01:29:59
14.   Tommy Naccarato
das4,
I'm still here.

Jon, Glad to hear that it was much better tonight, and yes, absolutely it would be better if people got to park closer to their given location, but I thought they were more or less close to doing that already, or liked the area they parked in because they knew which was was the quickest way out?

Here's something I thought about yesterday while sitting for 2 1/2 hours:

After games, there will be times I want to enter my usual way, behind right field at the newly named, "Academy Gate." But there have been times where we went further into town, like say the Dresden. Most of the time it has been a spontaneous decision to go there--after the game. Only thing, I can't make that decision now because to get to the Dresden, I can't get there fro the Academy Gate. I have to go to the Sunset Gate which is the gate of the two biggest lots at Dodger Stadium, and probably the two lots that are affected most by this new parking plan.

Say we want to go to Sky Bar. To do that from our usual gate, it's back out to try to get through traffic to the 110 and further traffic on the 101. Instead, I could have exited out the Sunset Gate and turn right and could be at the Dresden with-in 15 minutes, with enough time to catch Marty & Elaine's final set. (hopefully they are still there!) (I'm just using this as an example)

I like your idea of giving people freedom to roam to which gate they wish to leave, and from the looks of it, that isn't going to happen.

Tonight I started thinking of something else.....Is this part of Frank's plan when he builds Frankietown behind the left field pavillion? You know, the area which they'll have a Yardhouse, Gordon Birsch, Chili's and J.T. Schmick's, to keep everyone there as long as possible, thus raising the need for Frankietown

Another thing I thought of yesterday was, if you owned the franchise rights to that Unocal that's been there in the back since the beginning of time, wouldn't you be a bit upset knowing only an 1/8th of the stadium could get to your pumps and service bays? (not that the people we're lined-up to get in there anyway!)

Just some idle thoughts...

2007-04-11 04:11:04
15.   bhsportsguy
Jon made the final cut of the web story in California section of L.A. Times.

14 Your thoughts on the Unocal station was covered by today's notes in the L.A. Times, owner said he had about 60 customers on Monday, short of the 80-100 customers he would normally get.

2007-04-11 05:37:47
16.   tskent
Beimel was NAILS last night once again. Beimel's numbers were solid last season. If you take away those numbers in blowouts his numbers would have been SPECTACULAR. Mop up is not JoeyB's forte.

Its irks me a little bit that Beimel does not get the respect and notoriety he deserves and DEMANDS from Dodgerdom.

It's good to see that the Dodgers are 5-3 without Furcal and Pierre (LOL..) thus far.

Hopefully Pierre's critical baseknock last night will be the ignitor to get last seasons NL hits leader on the right track.

And Saito continues to be Saito. The man continues to amaze. It's scary to think where we'd be if Ned hadn't found this gem.

Billzy is worrying me a bit. I'd actually advocate a demotion if he pitches poorly for a 3rd consecutive outing. Actually, I'm advocating that JoeyB becomes the 7th inning guy. His sinker and change low and away to righties is deadly. I don't consider him a lefty specialist.

2007-04-11 05:45:34
17.   Andrew Shimmin
Link to the Times' story:

http://tinyurl.com/2s6hjc

Read it before (or instead of) the Simers story, or you'll come away thinking that the parking lot redesign made room for 4,000 new parking spots, which would explain the problems immediately. But that isn't it; fewer people car pool to opening day games (and, presumably, other day games though those don't tend to sell out). Doesn't account for the trouble Jon had last night, but it does help explain why Monday was so bad.

I wonder if what they've accomplished is spreading the pain more evenly; negating the advantage of Dodger Stadium parking experts, but lowering the average time spent in the lot. The now-hamstrung experts would be the most likely to complain, or even notice. The people who don't know any better, don't realize they're better off. Win-win-win.

2007-04-11 06:36:09
18.   Andrew Shimmin
Outrage of the day:

http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6418763.html?industryid=47141

If you don't know who Jessica Cutler is, you're better off not Googling her name at work. She's reviewing the the new Chris Buckley book? Somebody on this planet thought that was a good idea? Maybe Publishers Weekly is holding off till Updike's next book before bringing in Paris Hilton. Britney Spears should have a lot to say about Phillip Roth's next book, I'd expect.

2007-04-11 06:47:28
19.   Penarol1916
18. She caused a minor scandal a couple of years ago as a Capital Hill staffer with her blog, Washingtonienne about how she was having relations with a bunch of different guys, including a senior, married staffer on Senator Mike DeWine's staff. The whole thing was a big deal on the Wonkette blog and in Washington, I think she ended up with a book deal out of it.
2007-04-11 07:15:02
20.   bobmac
Sitting here reading about the parking fiasco, I began to get indignant, much like Jon and those 'guys' at SOSG. Then I realized...at least you get to go to the game! My 850 mile (the closest I have been in 35 years) commute to see the game, heck ANY Dodger game, makes me have a bit of a problem sympathizing with any of you lucky enough to even drive by Chavez Ravine! Enough said about the parking...lets talk baseball!
2007-04-11 07:21:45
21.   Andrew Shimmin
Her Playboy pictorial had greater literary merit than the book.
2007-04-11 07:29:56
22.   bluegold
Tompko pitched the best 6 innings I have seen any Dodgers pitched in quite awhile. If THAT is our 5th starter, the Dodgers have a WS-caliber starting rotation.

The relief corp is an entirely different matter. Specifically, Seanez/Billingsly. Maybe it is only wishful thinking that fans see something in Billingsly that is not really there. At least not yet. Tompko really deserved a W last night, and preserving a 1-run lead is currently not Billingsly's strong suit. He might be good when there is a 5-run lead and you want him to use up an inning while sacrificing a couple of runs in the process -- just to get one inning out of the way. As for Seanez, there is really nothing to say.

2007-04-11 07:53:20
23.   das411
14 - Good to see you again!

Is anybody else's ESPN league going as crazy as mine? It says I am losing on steals thanks to one each from Alf Soriano and...Russ Martin???

2007-04-11 08:02:56
24.   ToyCannon
Funny all these Tomko plaudits. The same was being said last April except he even looked better then he did then. I was screaming at Grady for leaving Beimel into face Holiday with Broxton ready and willing to soldier on against the best hitter on the Rockies when said best hitter weekly hit into a 1-2-3 DP.
The Valdez hitting 6th almost bit Grady in the butt, but at this point it is not like Ethier or Betemit would have come through with one out and the bases loaded.
Parking off street was a breeze but I was an hour early. My niece came about 20 minutes after me and was only 30 cars away. I did notice that season parking was not going smoothly from the Sunset gate and they were funneling the GP around lot 1 into the back entrance which did seem strange. Great crowd, had a great time. If anyone loves barbecued food they are selling some awesome $12 sausages in the corner of the 3b Loge section. JP continues to amaze me at how he looks like he's never played CF before. If he's the hardest working guy in baseball I'd like to know what he's working on because it certainly isn't his routes and dude we were taught in LL to frame up a ball if our arm sucks. If you already have the weakest arm in baseball catching a popup flatfooted with a man on base is not exactly the way to go.
2007-04-11 08:06:39
25.   Benaiah
22 - I Tomko is a sub 1 WHIP, 14 Ks per 9, 1.5 ERA pitcher, then not only are the Dodgers World Series contenders, but Tomko is the Cy Young. Unfortunately, one start, however nice, doesn't predict much. I think Billingsley is a much better bet going foreward than Tomko, two fluky appearance be damned. He should be in the rotation anyway, but that is a different story.
2007-04-11 08:18:46
26.   bluegold
25. Don't understand it. Tompko gives an outstanding performance, yet is quickly dismissed. Billingsly bombs each time he is given a chance, and he gets higher praise than Tompko.

On-field performance is what counts, not wishful thinking.

However, I realize there is a reason Tompko has the nickname The Bombco.

2007-04-11 08:21:35
27.   gpellamjr
Last night on ExtraInnings I was forced to watch the Rockies' broadcast. I though that Tomko had pitched pretty well until the Rockies' color analyst, and baseball guy through and through, informed me that "Tomko watches all he did go out the window" when the Rockies tied the game. Wow. I guess if you don't leave with a lead and your bullpen doesn't hold that lead, then you didn't pitch well.
2007-04-11 08:22:52
28.   gpellamjr
26 Remember last season? He had a good start, but he did more harm than good. Every year he has a couple of good starts, but eventually hurts his team. He just isn't that good at pitching.
2007-04-11 08:23:01
29.   adraymond
Tomko is a known commodity. Sometimes he will be great (last night) other times he will be Bombko. That's why you take performances like last night but you don't count on them. Bills on the other hand is full of potential. He could, in time, be one of the best pitchers in the league. For those reasons, it's easy to be wary of Tomko and excited for Bills, despite their respective performances.
2007-04-11 08:23:51
30.   Benaiah
Tomko had a ball go to the wall yesterday, that homerun would have change the perception of his start and the difference between hitting it to the wall and hitting it over the wall is basically just luck. Billingsley was lights out down the stretch last year (when Tomko was terrible) and he pitched great in Spring Training, am I supposed to give up on him because of a little more than 3 innings? Is Tomko suddenly reborn because of 6 innings? No and no. Over time people regress to their career averages, and Tomko's career is mediocre to plain bad.
2007-04-11 08:31:38
31.   D4P
One thing about Tomko: I seem to recall reading recently that he had changed something in his delivery (i.e. he started hiding the ball longer or something). If that's true, then maybe some portion of his great performance last night was actually non-random.
2007-04-11 08:32:34
32.   Nagman
Watching Billingsley pitch is conjuring up the same feeling in me that I used to get watching Ishii pitch.

I wonder if Martin gets frustrated because he has to wait before throwing the ball back since after nearly every pitch Billz is staring off into the stands out of frustration.

2007-04-11 08:33:49
33.   Andrew Shimmin
Billingsley's 2007 BABIP: .465
Tomko's 2007 BABIP: .112
2007-04-11 08:38:30
34.   D4P
33
I know that we're "supposed to" attribute BABIP to "luck", but shouldn't a pitcher's G/F ratio influence their BABIP? Shouldn't groundball pitchers have higher BABIPs than flyball pitchers, on average, and other things being equal? With that in mind, I present the following for 2006:

G/F
Tomko: 0.86
Billingsley: 1.61

2007-04-11 08:38:37
35.   Bumsrap
If Bills is waiting for a door to open in the rotation I would think that the door to Tomko's spot closed a bit while the door to Schmidt's spot has begun to open enough to let some light in.

Bills needs to make sure he is still the first in line to get through a door that opens. His 95 mph fastball and great curve is going to keep him first in line for a while.

2007-04-11 08:42:23
36.   screwballin
On-field performance is what counts, not wishful thinking.

The definition of wishful thinking is to believe that Tomko will do this for any length of time. In his 11-year MLB career, he never has.

On-field performance definitely counts, and we can be pretty sure that we'll get a mediocre season from Tomko. At best.

2007-04-11 08:43:10
37.   Bumsrap
As of right now the Dodgers do not appear to have a third baseman ready to contribute in 2007.
2007-04-11 08:43:47
38.   bluegold
Speaking of bombco's, Jeff Weaver's ERA is currently over 31. Jeff Weaver -- lots of Dodgers fans wanted him re-signed.
2007-04-11 08:48:20
39.   Bumsrap
If Ethier gets back to early 2006 form during the time Kemp is out, does anyone think Grady and Ned would be so stubborn not to start Kemp and Ethier and bench Gonzo or Pierre if the latter were not impressing?
2007-04-11 08:48:49
40.   Benaiah
34 - More GB's leads to a higher BABIP since GBs often turn into singles, however FBs turn into Doubles and Home Runs. In other words, Tomko's BABIP is artificially low right now, and when it goes up, his ERA will be in the tank, like every other year. Billingsley's BABIP is unlucky right now, and when it goes down then he will fine. 3.1 bad innings from Billingsley don't get me worried.
2007-04-11 08:50:12
41.   ToyCannon
26
Last season Tomko was 5-1 around early May and was easily our best pitcher to start the season. From that point on he was terrible. Not Bad Penny 2nd half terrible but still terrible. So while I appreciate what Tomko did last night, I don't expect him to replicate anything close to that for the rest of the year. However I do think he is capable of being a competent 5th starter, just not a great pitcher. Most people think our 5th starter should be an all-star but 5th starters are what they are, one good pitcher away from being in the bullpen. I've been hoping that Billingsly was that pitcher but he's yet to show me what all the hoopla was about. I see a pitcher with good stuff but can't control it. Last year he was lucky and other then one or two games was never "lights out" as has been suggested.
2007-04-11 08:52:10
42.   D4P
More GB's leads to a higher BABIP since GBs often turn into singles

Yeah, which is why we would expect a flyball pitcher (like Tomko was last year) to have a lower BABIP than a groundball pitcher (like Billingsley was last year). Of course, the issue of singles vs. extrabase hits highlights the weakness of BABIP as a stand-alone stat.

PS: You've got (hot)mail

2007-04-11 08:52:41
43.   ToyCannon
There is nothing more worthless then putting up BABIP numbers after one start or several relief appearances. Tomko was not lucky last night, he whiffed almost 1/2 the batters he faced and only two balls were even hit hard.
On most teams he would have left with a valid no hitter for his work.
2007-04-11 09:01:42
44.   Frip
From Tony Jackson:

"Juan Pierre finally appears to be getting untracked with three hits in his past five at-bats (and it would have been four hits if a diving Todd Helton hadn't robbed him of a double in the third inning tonight)."

I understand the whole "robbed" thing in general, but that was not a rob. That was Juan hitting like Juan. Maybe if he could raise the ball above 6 feet he wouldn't have to worry about being robbed.

2007-04-11 09:01:43
45.   jasonungar05
37 Nomar?
2007-04-11 09:02:39
46.   Andrew Shimmin
Nothing? That sounds like a dare.
2007-04-11 09:02:47
47.   Benaiah
42 - Lower, but not that low. No one has BABIP in the .100s and no one should have them in the .400s. A flyball pitcher might get his BABIP in the mid .200, and a groundball guy might be in the low .300s, but again the SLG will make up for that.
2007-04-11 09:06:50
48.   bluegold
39. Colletti did not sign Gonzo and Pierre, parade them at a press conference as Dodgers saviors, and then have to eat crow and bench them in favor of players already on the team.
We will see Gonzo/Pierre for the long haul.
2007-04-11 09:12:30
49.   Tangled Up in Blue
I believe the parking situation from opening day was related to traffic outside the stadium. It was rush hour and when we left (after the last out) we got outside the stadium quickly however the lines to get onto the freeway were at a stand still. The stadium was built in 1962 but downtown LA was not what it is today and I would venture to guess that there are a lot more cars on the road these days than back when the stadium was built. The problem is LA traffic which shows no signs of letting up.

RE: Betemit. I like his plate discipline and I am impressed with the 6 walks so far this year considering he had 17 with the Dodgers in 174 at bats last year. He is not hitting but I think that will come around. I think he needs more playing time, not less.

2007-04-11 09:13:01
50.   Jon Weisman
48 - Mike Davis was paraded.

Don Stanhouse and Dave Goltz were paraded.

Kaz Ishii was paraded.

It may take a lot, but demotions of high-profile signees do happen.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-04-11 09:14:35
51.   Jon Weisman
49 - People have not been comparing 2007 to 1962. People have been comparing 2007 to 2006. The new system has definitely affected things - maybe it will all work out, but there's little doubt that there's more going on than just the admittedly increasing Los Angeles traffic.
2007-04-11 09:14:53
52.   jasonungar05
48 then Colletti should be fired for lack of doing the right thing for everyone involved. I think Ned based on last season is willing to check his own ego at the door.
2007-04-11 09:17:15
53.   ToyCannon
I guess the ego of the GM has to come into play in these situations.
I was giddy over Mike Davis, not so much for Goltz and Stanhouse. Someday I'll take a look at Mike Davis stats again and see if the writing was on the wall but his failure caught me completely by surprise.
2007-04-11 09:21:08
54.   D4P
Juan Pierre finally appears to be getting untracked with three hits in his past five at-bats

The problem with this kind of thinking is that Juan Pierre is always "untracked." He hits groundballs. That's what he does. Sometimes his grounders find the holes, and sometimes they don't. To say that he's slumping when the grounders don't find holes is kinda silly. Conversely, to say that he's en fuego when the grounders DO find holes is also kinda silly.

Bottom line: Pierre will have a lot of 0-4 games when the grounders don't find holes, and mix in some 2-4 games when they do.

2007-04-11 09:21:08
55.   Mr Customer
11 If you ever see a picture of what constituted heavy traffic on the freeway system in the '50s, you might find your answer. The armchair traffic engineer in me still insists that the freeway onramps are the pinch points.

Zoning has never been particuarly adept at pro-active parking analysis, anyway. (Playa Vista, I'm talking to you.) The CUP process seems to be more about justification of a particular land use than site analysis.

I'll climb down off the soap box now, before I really get going. I'm saving all my best material for when I start the "Planning and Urban Design Thoughts" blog someday.

2007-04-11 09:21:35
56.   underdog
Y'all had to mention Don Stanhouse, right when I was eating breakfast. {mmmph}

Easy stomach, don't turn over now...

Not only was he a terrible signing and a huge bust, but when I was a kid and my dad and I saw him in the stadium at the end of autograph night he refused to sign an autograph for me, because he was in a hurry to get out of there. Which he pretty much was.

2007-04-11 09:22:40
57.   bluegold
We were holding our collective breath: How would Colletti address the power-void issue, what blockbuster signing/trade would he negotiate to push this Dodger team over the top. What Colletti magic would he produce this time. And the answer was

ta-da....Gonzo/Pierre!!!!!

2007-04-11 09:22:55
58.   ToyCannon
Okay if I knew then what I know now I would not have been giddy over Mike Davis.
2007-04-11 09:27:17
59.   Tangled Up in Blue
51 - I was actually responding to Bob's comment (11) but I didnt reference that at all. I agree the new parking plan has caused problems but I think the plan could work for night and weekend games.
2007-04-11 09:27:48
60.   ToyCannon
54
Wouldn't it be a lot of 1-4 games mixed in with some 2-4 games? You don't do a lot of 0-4 games and post his career batting average.
2007-04-11 09:28:10
61.   tskent
How old one a sec Mr. Unger. When everyone wanted to throw in the towel at the end of last July, Neddie screamed NOOOOO!!!! I trust his judgement tenfold over mine or any poster on a forum.
2007-04-11 09:30:20
62.   D4P
60
Sure. My list of "X-4" games wasn't meant to be exhaustive. But the point still stands: Pierre is generally not "playing better" when he goes 2-4 than when he goes 0-4 or 1-4. This may be true for other players as well, but it's particularly true for a player like Pierre who hits a ton of relatively weak groundballs.
2007-04-11 09:30:22
63.   Benaiah
59 - Your handle is the one I would have chosen if I didn't just use my generic handle. The best ballad ever and it fits like a glove.
2007-04-11 09:33:37
64.   D4P
63
What about something like "StuckInChicagoWithDodgerBlues"...?
2007-04-11 09:35:07
65.   Frip
I wish we lived in a world where power men like Colletti were expected to sit down for Mike Wallace "60 Minutes" type interviews and explain themselves.
2007-04-11 09:38:10
66.   Humma Kavula
65 I do not want to see the mustache in extreme close-up.
2007-04-11 09:38:12
67.   Marty
Just when it looks like it's going to be a nice day, someone has to mention "Full-Pack"...
2007-04-11 09:38:19
68.   Andrew Shimmin
See? Tell me 64 isn't more worthless than my BABIP post.
2007-04-11 09:40:02
69.   ToyCannon
Why so Mike could only keep what he wants to keep to show the viewers? I've never understood why anyone would watch a show where a partisan person determines what part of the interview the audience can see. Everyone here would sound guilty of something if you gave me a 10 minute interview and I only showed 1 minute of it.
2007-04-11 09:41:02
70.   ToyCannon
Sure it is, but we consider the source, with you we expect more.
2007-04-11 09:42:41
71.   D4P
64 is a bit of an "inside joke"
2007-04-11 09:45:07
72.   Benaiah
71 - Yeah, there are drawbacks to having a 50 character handle though. That handle was actually another Bob Dylan song, "Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again". One of my all time favorites.
2007-04-11 09:46:36
73.   Andrew Shimmin
71- There's a Jessica Cutler joke to be had out of that, but I'm over it. I'm knee deep in a Hoover Institute study of farm subsidies penned by one Jenny Jamison.
2007-04-11 09:53:43
74.   Penarol1916
73. Farm subsidies are my pet peeve in life. As long as Jenna Jamison is strongly against them, I'll be happy.
2007-04-11 09:57:15
75.   Frip
Andrew my mother informs me that Penarol is correct, it's Jenna Jamison, not Jenny.
2007-04-11 09:57:22
76.   Andrew Shimmin
74- So far, all I've been able to suss out is that she thinks they're imaginative but would be better if Tom Wolfe had written them.

But really. I'm over it.

2007-04-11 09:59:47
77.   bryanf
I know I'm late to the discussion (as always), but I had to get this in. Forgetting everything else...Pierre, Tomko, parking...

Is there a more important Dodger so far this year than Russell Martin? That kid is EVERYWHERE! I know people say that Furcal is the best all around player on the Dodgers, but MAN Russell Martin is fun to watch!

2007-04-11 10:01:21
78.   Andrew Shimmin
75- Thanks for being funnier than I am, in my hour of spite. Whoever she is, she has a book, too.
2007-04-11 10:02:36
79.   Tangled Up in Blue
63 - Thanks. I love the song and I thought it was a perfect handle. Actually I was surprised it was available because I am relatively new here.
2007-04-11 10:09:59
80.   Benaiah
79 - Yeah, I can't believe it either. Most people here seem to favor Vonnegut references.
2007-04-11 10:12:25
81.   D4P
The latest Joe Morgan chat at FJM is classic.
2007-04-11 10:16:19
82.   Penarol1916
77. I'd go so far as to call him the sould of the Dodgers.
2007-04-11 10:17:23
83.   jasonungar05
[63, 79]I am a huge, huge dylan fan. And now I feel stupid for my lack of creativity in my handle. LOL
2007-04-11 10:24:53
84.   DXMachina
64 "StuckInChicagoWithDodgerBlues"

Again?

2007-04-11 10:31:32
85.   underdog
That could be a good discussion thread - other possible song-inspired DT handles...

Almost Blue. Blue Hotel.
And then when we're feeling frustrated we can be An Awful Shade of Blue (by Tarnation).

I wonder if there's a wayback song about trolley dodgers, or superbas.

2007-04-11 10:32:36
86.   kevinarno
Is there anyone out there who thinks this team is capable of scoring more than 750 runs?

I don't want to beat a dead horse, but looking at Diamondvision's constant reiteration of Juan Pierre's hit totals over his career and Colletti's justifications for the signing, I can't understand how this organization can't grasp these simple facts:

In 2006, Juan Pierre generated 595 outs. That's 595. Best as I can tell, the next closest player [Rollins] recorded 498. Was there no one in the organization who saw that this very nice guy generated about 20% more outs than the second most prolific out machine in the league? Did no one in the organization realize that this very hard worker can't hit for extra bases, can't draw a walk, can't throw, can't cover ample ground in CF...in short, can't do what a leadoff hitter on a contending team needs to do.

I applaud Jon's optimism. But this looks like 2003 all over again.

2007-04-11 10:37:22
87.   kevinarno
uh...495 outs. But I stand by my general point. blush
2007-04-11 10:37:31
88.   Andrew Shimmin
The 2003 team scored 574 runs. I would gladly wager both of my kidneys that the 2007 team will score more than that.
2007-04-11 10:42:36
89.   Benaiah
2003 Dodgers included

Adrian Beltre: 240/.290/.424 in 559 ABs
Cesar Izturis: .251/.282/.315 in 558 ABs (truly astounding how bad that line is)
Alex Cora: .249/.287/.338 in 477 ABs
Jeromy Burnitz: .204/.252/.391 in 230 ABs
Dave Roberts: .250/.331/.307 in 388 ABs
Paul Lo Duca: .273/.335/.377 in 568 ABs
Fred McGriff: .249/.322/.428 in 297 ABs

Only one person on the team had an OPS over 800. 2003 is much worse than you remember. Pierre has a pretty good shot of out OPSing the Dodger 1B. He is virtually gauranteed to hit better than the Dodger SS, 2B, C, 3B and LF. Pierre isn't that bad. Understand, Luis Gonzales would have been enough of a step up that the Dodgers would have made the playoffs. 2003 was insane.

2007-04-11 10:43:10
90.   underdog
86 All worth pondering. Except, who said he's our leadoff hitter? Grady Little said Furcal is our leadoff hitter, so, first 2 weeks of the season aside, I'm hopeful the # of outs thing will be less of an issue soon. At the 2 hole, or the 8 hole, Pierre can bunt Furcal over, or avoid double plays with his speed, or occasionally, gosh, get a legit hit, and not damage anything too much. So here's hoping we'll get a healthy Furcal soon.
2007-04-11 10:45:18
91.   Snowdog
86 - Using a total number of outs imparts the same logic Ned used when he said of Pierre: "He gets on base an awful lot."

It's all about the percentages, and Pierre has a career OBP of .349. As a leadoff hitter who plays every game, he's going to lead the league in plate appearances, making a lot of outs and getting on base an awful lot.

Hopefully, he hits more like he did in 2003/4 than he did in 2005/6 (it's probably too much to hope for more walks).

I could easily cope with a light-hitting .350 OBP guy that can play defense, however, I am disturbed by his play in the OF. Wow, he looks like someone just getting used to the position. I hope indeed it's a matter of trying too hard to impress - but that's not the impression I'm getting.

He's no Dave Roberts with the glove.

2007-04-11 10:46:34
92.   Jon Weisman
88 - How have you not lost at least one of your kidneys in a bet already?
2007-04-11 10:49:13
93.   Hythloday
83 - If it will help we can call you jasontheeskimo05.
2007-04-11 10:50:00
94.   ToyCannon
What is the fascination with how many outs he generated. Figure out how many outs he generates per ab and then we can talk. Pete Rose lead the league in outs just about every year because he got a heck of a lot of plate appearances. When you lead the league in plate appearances you tend to lead the league in outs unless your Ricky Henderson or Tim Raines. If JP lead the league in outs with 500 plate appearances then we can discuss his suckitude.
2007-04-11 10:50:09
95.   Andrew Shimmin
92- I was born with three.

I don't like to talk about it.

2007-04-11 10:50:54
96.   Sushirabbit
Things I like about Pierre:
1) He does actually get hits as well as outs
2) He may not know how to route to the ball or frame up fro the throw, but he does get in position fast to help Gonzalez.

There, I've stretched a little today. I feel better already.

Also, I'm with bryanf, who's this Russell Martin kid? Wow, he has been amazing.

I see absolutely nothing wrong with riding Tomko deep into May, after that I'd hope there'd be some realization that he always falls off.

Our outfield defense is more disconcerting to me than it's offense.

2007-04-11 10:51:16
97.   Tangled Up in Blue
Pierre is part of an outfield that I call Desolation Row.

By the way, one of my favorite Dylan songs is Talkin' Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues. With that said, Pierre can't field, can't throw, can't get on base....quite lucky to be alive though!

2007-04-11 10:53:34
98.   underdog
Not even sure Dave Roberts is Dave Roberts with the glove.

But woof to my fellow dog all the same.

2007-04-11 10:54:21
99.   Sushirabbit
95 I bet you had fun in college...
2007-04-11 10:56:31
100.   Hythloday
91 - It's not quite the same. Saying "He gets on base an awful lot" based upon his average ignores everything that goes into OBP. On the other hand an out is an out. Saying "He gets out an awful lot" doesn't ignore all the various ways he can get out. If a team gets roughly 4374 outs every season (27 outs per game) and JP accounts for 11% of those outs that seems a bit problematic. I know there are plenty of problems with that simple math, but I would be surprised if JP accounts for more than 11% of the Dodgers' runs this season.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-04-11 11:03:46
101.   Frip
69

60 Minutes can edit, but they can't put words in your mouth. You DO get to talk. You even get to lie.

Mike Wallace: But Ned, looks aside, you're obviously an articulate, intelligent man. One who's reached the very top of his profession. You have access to OBP numbers just like the rest of us. In effect you live and die by the numbers. Tell us then, what went through your mind as your eyes scanned down the column to find Mr. Pierre saddled with a career EQA nearly 10 points lower than the average bum? Surely not $44 million?! Why are you looking at me like that?

2007-04-11 11:05:48
102.   scareduck
89 - one of my favorite things I discovered in the last year is that, among teams with winning records, the 2003 Dodgers had the highest percentage of win shares eminating from their pitching staff:

http://6-4-2.blogspot.com/2006/09/todays-birthdays_16.html#Paul_Shuey

2007-04-11 11:07:22
103.   scareduck
92 - and what if he wins? Where will he put the extra kidneys?
2007-04-11 11:11:04
104.   rockmrete
I am hopeful Grady sees the beefits of giving Martin the extra atbats in the two hole, and Pierre in the eight spot in the order could make him a little more appealing.
2007-04-11 11:11:12
105.   ToyCannon
Ned:Well I've never heard of EQA but my scouts tell me he gets on base alot and creates havok when he on the basepaths thus resulting in scoring opportunities. We feel that if Billy Beane can use Jason Kendall as a starting catcher then we should feel lucky to have Pierre as our starting CF even if the price was a little to rich. These were the same scouts who convinced me to sign Furcal and we know how that worked out. I'm no longer listening to the scouts who talked me into trading for Lugo/Carter/Baez/Hendrickson.
2007-04-11 11:11:17
106.   Snowdog
98 - probably not these days, but I don't recall ever questioning his routes or ability to be in position to make a throw. I did see a nice catch he made for the Giants the other day - one that Pierre would have gotten to, but would have mis-timed his jump or glove.
2007-04-11 11:11:36
107.   Andrew Shimmin
103- http://www.havocscope.com/trafficking/organs.htm
2007-04-11 11:11:56
108.   rockmrete
"n" for benefits
2007-04-11 11:12:51
109.   D4P
I'd like to know if Ned honestly envisions Juan Pierre as the starting centerfielder for the Dodgers for the next 5 seasons
2007-04-11 11:18:50
110.   ToyCannon
107
I know a guy whose job is to take out the organs from the dead people who have donated them. He's on call 24/7 and has a helicopter on call for him. What a strange thing to take something from someone so newly dead to try to deliver life to someone barely hanging on whose only hope is for a healthy person to die in traumatic fashion without endangering the organs.
2007-04-11 11:23:38
111.   Dodgers49
31. One thing about Tomko: I seem to recall reading recently that he had changed something in his delivery

>>> the23game: During the offseason you did some tweaks to your wind-up and delivery. As we have seen for Barry Zito, this can become a negative, but this spring you've shown this can be a positive. What made you make these changes?

Tomko: Actually, I was having dinner with Dave Roberts and we got to talking about pitching and hitting and I asked him if I happened to sometimes tip my pitches or anything from a hitter's perspective. He said the only thing he ever heard was that sometimes, guys see the ball too long and I had heard that a couple of other times, so I just tried to tweak it a little bit so I would hide the ball longer and it's more of a surprise when you let go of the ball. It wasn't any drastic change. It was minor stuff and it wasn't that hard of a change. <<<

http://tinyurl.com/2og87r

2007-04-11 11:24:12
112.   scareduck
107 - a cool $30,000? Man, sign me up...
2007-04-11 11:24:30
113.   Benaiah
102 - As much as we complain about LuGo and Pierre, they would have been huge improvements over the people in their positions in 2003. In fact, I will so far as to say that the Dodgers are better at every single position than they were in 2003.

C- .265/.338/.396/.734 (Dave Ross had an .873 OPS in 121 ABs)
1B- .242/.308/.398/.707
2B- .274/.320/.387/.707 (Jolbert Caberra, .908 OPS in 143 ABs)
3B- .236/.291/.410/.701
SS- .244/.275/.307/.581 (!)
LF- .220/.291/.352/.643
CF- .254/.321/.358/.679 (Cabrerra, Jordan, Burnitz all OPS around .800 in 200 ABs)
RF- .278/.353/.455/.807

By spot in the lineup:
.243/.306/.320/.626(!)
.241/.293/.315/.607(!)
.280/.350/.453/.803
.250/.331/.423/.754
.271/.328/.457/.785
.218/.274/.367/.641
.263/.325/.409/.734
.252/.296/.342/.638

That is how you put together the worst offense in the league.

2007-04-11 11:25:35
114.   confucius
I knew the Dodgers couldn't score any runs in 2003, but 574 is absurdly low. Even with their pitching I don't know how they won ten games.
2007-04-11 11:27:40
115.   jasonungar05
2003 was the most frustrating year of being a dodger fan in my life.
2007-04-11 11:28:50
116.   ToyCannon
Ah if only Dan Evans had traded E Jackson and Greg Miller for the big bat our history would be forever changed.
I'd have cried like a baby but in retrospect it would have been the right choice as we wasted an incredible pitching performance by the team.
2007-04-11 11:28:52
117.   Benaiah
114 - The team had a 3.16 ERA for the year. Last year here is the list of pitchers with an ERA that low:

Johan Santana
Roy Oswalt
Chris Carpenter
Branden Webb

That is how you win 85 games with that offense.

2007-04-11 11:29:28
118.   Monterey Chris
114

If the players weren't capable of winning 10 games, then they must have had a great manager to end up with the record they did.

2007-04-11 11:33:39
119.   confucius
Nomo was unbelievable that year. So was Ishii.
2007-04-11 11:34:16
120.   Benaiah
Interesting fact, that 2003 team had the lowest collective ERA since 2002 when the Braves had a 3.13 ERA.
2007-04-11 11:35:06
121.   Benaiah
119 - Kevin Brown was disgusting. He would go to the hall of fame if he was a little more durable and a little less crazy.
2007-04-11 11:35:22
122.   confucius
115 The games were hard to watch because you knew if they got down a couple runs early it was over.
2007-04-11 11:39:59
123.   Frip
111

Perhaps Tomko's new motion is a factor, but the mind is a funny thing. It's cause & effect wires are all screwed up.

Every time I see my dad he's going on about some new fangled golf stroke he's found that's changed everything for him.

Two weeks later, right on schedule, he's disowned the new stroke, complete with red faced profanity.

Along the same lines, I think he's on his 23rd putter now.

2007-04-11 11:42:06
124.   confucius
123 On that note, I wish I played golf. It would give me something to occupy my mind.
2007-04-11 11:48:06
125.   D4P
It would give me something to occupy my mind

In the case of golf, that's not a good thing. It drives you crazy.

2007-04-11 11:50:05
126.   gibsonhobbs88
At the game last night. Not to beat a dead horse but, "Why are we paying an extra $5 for these yahoos to point us to a parking space we are perfectly capable of finding on our own?" Note to Dodgers - On most days, the trouble is not getting in, but getting out. Those attendants were half-heartedly waving their flashlights like they were in some drug-induced trance after the game.
As far as the game, brilliant pitching by Tomko, less than stellar from Bills, Big DP 1-2-3 in the 8th with Holliday at the plate and "My favorite Martin" to the rescue again. Russell is the Man!! Two hits, a stolen base, a run scored and the clutch sac fly RBI not to mention gunning down Tavares and executing the 8th inning DP with the step out from home and throw the pea to first.
2007-04-11 11:50:19
127.   underdog
Btw, this is Rotoworld today on Tony Abreu:

"Tony Abreu went 5-for-5 and hit his first homer Tuesday for Triple-A Las Vegas.
Abreu's .287/.343/.392 line in Double-A last year hardly screams top prospect, but scouts have always liked him and he wasn't far away from making the Dodgers with his strong showing last month. He's off to an 11-for-25 start at Las Vegas." Another reason the loss of Wilson Valdez won't exactly kill us.

2007-04-11 11:52:00
128.   old dodger fan
125
But it is a fun kind of crazy, unlike watching center field.
2007-04-11 11:52:09
129.   Inside Baseball
Please excuse this solicitation but I have two tickets and preferred parking available for tonight's game that I would like to sell and make a small donation to Jon in the process.

They are in section 4 of the inner reserve level in Row B (the second row) on the aisle behind the plate. They include lot N parking, formerly lot 4. (For what it's worth I was in the vast minority Monday and had absolutely no problem exiting the stadium quickly even though I stayed until the very end.)

What I am proposing is a silent auction. My total cost each game is $56.00. Buying 2 inner reserve seats (not nearly as good) from the Dodger website and then parking at the stadium would cost $65.00. Buying equivalent seats and parking from the Dodgers ticket exchange would cost at the very minimum about $90.00.

The highest offer emailed to me before 3:00pm will win the tickets. The winner will then paypal me the money and I will email them the tickets and parking. I will paypal Jon any amount over $40.00 that I receive and at least $10 no matter how low the winning bid may end up.

Please email all bids to ellyceandbarry@verizon.net by 3:00pm today and I'll post the handle and amount of the winning bidder shortly thereafter in this same comments thread.

By the way, I have these seats and parking for most of the odd-numbered games available for purchase at my cost ($56). Please email me if interested. Thanks. Barry

2007-04-11 11:54:28
130.   Eric Enders
126 ""My favorite Martin" to the rescue again. Russell is the Man!! Two hits, a stolen base, a run scored and the clutch sac fly RBI not to mention gunning down Tavares and executing the 8th inning DP with the step out from home and throw the pea to first."

All that and you haven't even mentioned the most impressive thing he did in the game, which was blocking that strikeout pitch in the dirt, then, after the batter kicked the ball toward first, Martin ran two-thirds of the way up the baseline, picked up the ball and somehow threw the runner out without hitting him in the back.

2007-04-11 11:57:14
131.   Greg S
125. Oh but it's a sweet sweet insanity.
2007-04-11 12:00:12
132.   Monterey Chris
130

I was surprised that the ball was still in play after it was kicked by the batter.

2007-04-11 12:03:57
133.   Bumminglory
119 Not to mention career years from the entire bullpen (Quantrill, Mota, Gagne, Tom Martin, Shuey, Colyer, Browhawn, Kida) and the 5th starters for the second half (Wilson Alvarez, and Edwin Jackson)

14 pitchers in all with an ERA+ of 100 or more
10 pitchers with an ERA+ of 130 or more
6 pitchers with an ERA+ of 160 or more

freakish indeed.

2007-04-11 12:08:57
134.   D4P
2003 Home-Road splits:

Home ERA: 2.75
Road ERA: 3.57

Home Runs Scored: 271
Road Runs Scored: 303

2007-04-11 12:16:16
135.   Eric L
As an optimistic fan, I certainly hope that the changes Tomko made in his delivery are for real. If he continues to pitch like he did last night, the Dodgers should be sitting pretty.

On the other hand, there always seems to be stories rolling around this time of the year about some mediocre (or sub mediocre) veteran tinkering with his delivery/release point/batting stance/sunglasses that will make this year finally be the year that the results meet expectations.

2007-04-11 12:26:10
136.   Bumminglory
If Elbert continues to mow down AA hitters and continues to show improved control, do you call him up to LA by mid-season?
I'm not so sure he'll benefit from the pcl
2007-04-11 12:26:44
137.   Jon Weisman
135 - Last year, I'm pretty sure Odalis Perez was the subject of one of those stories.
2007-04-11 12:33:56
138.   Bumsrap
110
I would be interested in how you would relate this post to improving the Dodgers. In other words, what body parts would you take, from and to whom?
2007-04-11 12:33:57
139.   Benaiah
Remember Odalis's first year with the team. Whatever happened to that guy? Looking at his page on fangraphs, he was legitimately good that year (2002). He allowed way less home runs than normal, plus his walks went down, combined with a low BABIP and you have a 3.00 ERA. Unfortunately, all of that went back up after 2002. He still isn't as bad as last year, when he had a .354 BABIP. I bet that he could post a mid 4 ERA in the NL, which has some value.
2007-04-11 12:35:47
140.   Jon Weisman
Happy birthday, Apple Pan

http://www.laobserved.com/intell/2007/04/apple_pan_turns_60_today.php

2007-04-11 12:38:53
141.   Frip
"...then, after the batter kicked the ball toward first..."

I didn't catch that. Hilarious. I'm against cheating, but if you're gonna do it, make it funny.

Steroids - Gallagher
Kicking the ball - Ricky Bobby

2007-04-11 12:54:35
142.   s choir
130 I think the batter-runner should have been called out for interference.

Rule 7.09 It is interference by a batter or a runner when-

(a) After a third strike he hinders the catcher in his attempt to field the ball

But Martin did a great job by not hesitating to go after the ball and throw him out anyway, mooting the umpire's missed call.

2007-04-11 12:58:37
143.   underdog
Martin actually asked the ump what was up with that right as that play ended; if I could read lips correctly, or body language, the ump basically seemed to say, "Well, since you threw him out, we'll just go with that." Like, if Martin hadn't thrown him out, they could have argued and then called the batter out. The ump was just being lazy, or something.
2007-04-11 13:00:12
144.   ToyCannon
138
Great idea, we could start with taking apart Repko
1. Give his left arm to Pierre.
2. Give his right arm to Gonzo
3. Give his heart to Kent
4. Give his healthy leg to Furcal to replace the leg he hurt.
5. Give his kidney's to the Ecksteins since they will always be in short supply.
6. Have his ribs on call for Nomar or basically the rest of his body could be on call for Nomar.
2007-04-11 13:00:45
145.   still bevens
139 I think the beginning of the end was the 2004 playoffs. He got shelled in game one, then got back on the mound for game four, and was subsequently shelled again. He never seemed to recover his form after '04.
2007-04-11 13:01:41
146.   Bumsrap
The Nationals need help and I have grown tired of trying to will Loney, Kemp, and Ethier into the Dodger starting lineup.

I think Zimmerman would anchor third base for the Dodgers for a long time so I would now be relieved if Ned would just drop the other shoe. The first shoe was the signing of Gonzo and Pierre and giving first base to Nomar.

The second shoe would be trading Loney and LaRoche, Tomko and Kuo for Zimmerman. If Nomar gets injured, move Kent to first and give Abreu a chance at second. As for the long-term solution to first base, I am beginning to just not care anymore.

2007-04-11 13:04:39
147.   Penarol1916
144. Kent has heart problems?
2007-04-11 13:05:10
148.   ToyCannon
How much luck have the Dodgers had with LH Dominican starting pitchers with a last name of Perez? I think I'd just stop giving them long term deals.
2007-04-11 13:05:33
149.   Bluebleeder87
107

sign me up as well, It will pay for my trip to Vero Beach next year.

2007-04-11 13:06:21
150.   Bumsrap
Pierre seems the most improved.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2007-04-11 13:08:06
151.   be2ween
135 Tomko usually starts out sharply, then as the year progresses he goes downhill. Here's to CHANGE! As Wavy Gravy said to me at a Berkeley ATM, 'Change is what is!'
2007-04-11 13:08:41
152.   Eric Enders
Zimmerman is never, ever, ever, ever going to be traded by Washington. They drafted him because he's a local boy, and after only one year he's become the face of the franchise, singlehandedly giving the Nats whatever credibility they have. The outcry on the LoDuca trade was a mere pindrop compared to what would go down in D.C. if the Nats traded Zimmerman. My guess is that when free agency approaches he will get a Helton-style 10-year overpaying deal and will end up never playing for another team.
2007-04-11 13:09:47
153.   coachjpark
When parking was $10, I'd make a right turn on the stoplight before the Elysian park entrance and park on the left-hand side... now there's even more incentive to park in that area... I went to the game yesterday, and that area filled up by game time, so I parked across the street in Lot 14... partly, I park outside the stadium to avoid the fee, but mostly because it's so much easier to get out if you park outside the stadium... the only tricky part is making sure you know which way you turn right and left in order to get back onto the freeway...
2007-04-11 13:10:41
154.   Bumsrap
152 - Fine, I will sweeten the deal by adding Hendrickson.
2007-04-11 13:14:10
155.   Bumsrap
152 - Zimmerman is never, ever, ever, ever going to be traded by Washington. If you saw that on a true or false test and were not sure of the answer would you mark it ture or false?
2007-04-11 13:14:52
156.   underdog
152 "Some may say he's a dreamer, but he's not the only one..."

{hums quietly to self}

2007-04-11 13:15:22
157.   Eric Enders
By the way, I went to a Russell-Martin concert on Saturday night. No baserunners were caught stealing, but a fine time was had by all, nonetheless.

http://whatson.leicester.gov.uk/Website/ShowEvent/ShowEvent.aspx?EventID=4059

2007-04-11 13:16:15
158.   underdog
155 True, definitely true. They may be a franchise in a bad state at the moment, but they're not that oblivious. I think anybody else on the team would be tradeable (albeit wouldn't net as much in return as Zimmerman) but not him. No way.
2007-04-11 13:21:18
159.   Bumsrap
158 - What if I wait for June and offer a package too good to be refused such as Pierre, Gonzo, and Betemit?
2007-04-11 13:21:25
160.   old dodger fan
146 If we are going to dream, think about this. What if there was a team (Phillies)that began the season thinking they were playoff material and a week into the season their relief pitching was in the tank (22 IP; 16 runs) and they were in a division with 2 other really good teams (Mets and Braves) playing well. Might the GM fearing his team was losing touch with the leaders panic and overpay for a couple of average pitchers (Tomko and Hendrickson) who started the season well? And what if that panicky GM just happened to have several good hitters and thought he could spare one (Burrell). Might we even throw in an OFer to fill the spot (Ethier) for the player they send us.

I know; it won't happen but it sure is fun to think about.

2007-04-11 13:25:25
161.   Bumsrap
160 - The trade that I really want has to do with the type of glove Nomar wears.
2007-04-11 13:28:42
162.   ToyCannon
You would think Burrel could be a target. They need a 3b badly as Helms has proven to be a defensive liability besides not providing much offense. If we didn't have Gonzo I would think the phones would be burning up but you can't play Burrel in RF and Gonzo isn't going anywhere so the one player I'd be interested in who might be available doesn't really fit on this team at the moment.
2007-04-11 13:29:27
163.   Hythloday
161 - I hear Ryan Howard is available.
2007-04-11 13:30:52
164.   Dodgers49
Pierre works hard to live up to hefty Dodgers contract.

>>> Pierre is being harder on himself than usual at the moment because he wants to prove he's worth the five-year, $44 million contract he signed with the Dodgers in November. While Pierre has stolen more bases and is second to only Ichiro Suzuki in hits since 2001, his numbers have been on the decline the past two seasons and many questioned if Pierre deserved such a lucrative deal. So far he's done nothing to quiet those critics. <<<

http://tinyurl.com/29b5px

2007-04-11 13:35:49
165.   gibsonhobbs88
130 - I didn't even see from where I was sitting that the ball was kicked by the batter. That makes Russell's play even more impressive that he played the play through and would only glare or engage the umpire afterward. He seems to excel in all facets of the game at a very tough position and seems eager to learn even more of the demands of catcher. I see him as the next "captain" of the Dodgers if they see fit to name one.
2007-04-11 13:36:07
166.   D4P
"It's just second nature to me," Pierre says of his training regimen. "It works against you sometimes because you have to let games go. With me it's definitely tough. I know I do take it too seriously but that's what also makes me good; my passion for the game. To step off the gas pedal is hard for me because that's what makes me the player that I am."
2007-04-11 13:36:23
167.   Sushirabbit
Pat the Bat's off to too good a start for that.
2007-04-11 13:43:29
168.   Benaiah
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/04/AR2007040401721.html

Interesting article about an social experiment done by the Washington Post.

2007-04-11 13:45:05
169.   Benaiah
Perhaps a trade for Pat Burrell could include Luis Gonzales? The suddenly resurgent Tomko, Hendrickson, Gonzales for Burrell? It is to early to be sniffing glue.
2007-04-11 13:47:15
170.   old dodger fan
169 I'm hoping the Phillie pitchers get lit up a couple more times soon.
2007-04-11 13:48:39
171.   gibsonhobbs88
I'm going to the Jackie Robinson day on Sunday, I'm in the inner reserve section, I think section 5, not sure of row or seat number, my better half bought the tickets. I heard they flipped the starters, I was looking forward to seeing Schmidt pitch, guess I'll have to wait to the next homestand. Hopefully Wolf will have a good day on Sunday. I understand the logic behind the move, not giving a team the same look from a pitcher back to back, I was just looking forward to Schmidt pitching.
159 - It's fun to dream but then reality sets in and you realize that you are stuck with JP and LuGO for the year.:(
2007-04-11 13:51:29
172.   ToyCannon
Courtesy of BA:
LAD AAA Abreu, Etanislao 2B ........ 5 3 5 1 .440 - HR (1)
LAD HiA De Jesus, Ivan SS .......... 4 1 3 0 .429 - 2B (4)
LAD HiA Dewitt, Blake 3B ........... 4 1 2 1 .250 - 2B (2)
LAD HiA Furcal, Rafael DH .......... 4 0 0 0 .000 - Faced Bartolo Colon
LAD LoA Lizarraga, Francisco SS .... 5 1 4 0 .500

LAD AA Elbert, Scott ............. 5.0 0 0 0 2 9 2.45

2007-04-11 13:53:55
173.   Benaiah
Burrell does make a lot of money, so that is one reason to trade him.
2007-04-11 13:55:13
174.   Eric Enders
Burrell seems like exactly the opposite of the type of player Colletti would go for, though. He's more of a DePo type, with a low BA, lots of walks and strikeouts, and home run power. Colletti likes the guys who have been anointed by the media as "team leaders"; Burrell has been painted by the press as a head case and anything but a leader. IIRC he also gave a controversial interview to Penthouse, so that may not help him in Flanders' "character" department.
2007-04-11 13:57:30
175.   Eric Enders
174 Plus, he doesn't wear underwear. Would Colletti trade for a player who doesn't wear underwear?

http://espn.go.com/mlb/news/2001/0223/1104741.html

2007-04-11 13:58:37
176.   old dodger fan
173 Hendrickson & Tomko make $7.025 mill combined. We are paying $15 million for our starting outfielders right now and one of them is making $400k.
2007-04-11 14:04:39
177.   Monterey Chris
On the kicked ball, if the ump had called the batter out for interference, Tomko might have lost his strikeout. Since the out was recorded anyway, the ump might have been being nice to Tomko by not making the call.
2007-04-11 14:04:48
178.   old dodger fan
This thing is addictive. I'm not getting any work done. Thankfully my boss is not a Dodger fan (Cubs) so he is not reading it.
2007-04-11 14:08:05
179.   Faramond
Where does one park outside of the stadium?
2007-04-11 14:15:31
180.   Benaiah
175 - Sounded like an amazing interview. Where can I read that (without looking on Penthouse)?
2007-04-11 14:20:51
181.   still bevens
179 The area I have the most success with is off sunset. I'm a west-sider so I take beverly towards downtown and then get on sunset for a spell. I find theres a bunch of side streets right before elysian park ave/st/whatever that tend to have open spots. I am a bit worried that now that the parking situation is getting hectic that it will be harder to find free spaces.
2007-04-11 14:28:02
182.   tskent
Humberto Cota went 1-3 with an RBI today, but it wasn't enough as the Cardinals swept the Pirates.
2007-04-11 14:32:06
183.   GoBears
182. Fascinating.
2007-04-11 14:34:10
184.   s choir
177 I don't think Tomko would have lost the strikeout. Even if the ball hadn't been kicked, and the batter had made it to first, Tomko would still have been credited with a strikeout (even though no out would have been recorded).
2007-04-11 14:37:32
185.   Benaiah
182 - Chris Duncan has lived up to his debut so far. He is sporting a stellar .320/.433/.680/1.113 line including the winning home run today.
2007-04-11 14:40:07
186.   Eric Enders
177 I don't think that's correct. The strikeout had already happened and was over. The kick occurred after the batter became a baserunner:

"6.09
The batter becomes a runner when...(b) The third strike called by the umpire is not caught, providing (1) first base is unoccupied, or (2) first base is occupied with two out"

Also, I think the umpire made the right call anyway. Basically, this is a loophole. What the batter did is technically allowed under the rules of baseball, since (a) it was not a batted or thrown ball that he kicked, but a pitch, and (b) he didn't physially obstruct Martin. Here are the relevant rules, with the interesting parts in bold:

"6.06
A batter is out for illegal action when --
...
(c) He interferes with the catcher's fielding or throwing by stepping out of the batter's box or making any other movement that hinders the catcher's play at home base. EXCEPTION: Batter is not out if any runner attempting to advance is put out, or if runner trying to score is called out for batter's interference.

7.08
Any runner is out when --
(b) He intentionally interferes with a thrown ball; or hinders a fielder attempting to make a play on a batted ball;
...
(f) He is touched by a fair ball in fair territory before the ball has touched or passed an infielder. The ball is dead and no runner may score, nor runners advance, except runners forced to advance.

7.09
It is interference by a batter or a runner when --
(a) After a third strike he hinders the catcher in his attempt to field the ball;...
(i) He fails to avoid a fielder who is attempting to field a batted ball, or intentionally interferes with a thrown ball, provided that if two or more fielders attempt to field a batted ball, and the runner comes in contact with one or more of them, the umpire shall determine which fielder is entitled to the benefit of this rule, and shall not declare the runner out for coming in contact with a fielder other than the one the umpire determines to be entitled to field such a ball;"

6.06(c) would seem to be the closest, but it doesn't apply because (a) the incident occurred while the batter was still in the batter's box, (b) he did not physically hinder Martin, and (c) Whatever hindrance did occur did not hinder the catcher "at home plate," but on a live ball out in front of the plate.

2007-04-11 14:50:43
187.   s choir
186 6.06(c) applies only when the play is at home base; here the play was at first base. Also, at the moment that the third strike is not "legally caught," the batter becomes a runner and the baseline belongs to him, therefore he can step out of the batter's box.

I think 7.09 is the rule that is closest, but the language should be tightened up, either adding that the hindering must be intentional or making it clear that it need not be intentional.

2007-04-11 14:52:55
188.   Eric L
186 I'd have to check with my dad (he's the umpiring guru in the family - I'm still learning the nuances), but...

I think in a situation like that, the umpire is generally looking at whether or not the batter-runner intentionally kicked the ball.

2007-04-11 14:56:26
189.   jasonungar05
This is an interesting quote from a manager who my impression was just the opposite.

''I like numbers,'' the Cubs manager said Tuesday. ''If I had to go by gut or data, I'd go with data. You use your experience and you have to know your team and the other team, but you need the data. That's why we keep stats in baseball. It's a stats game, and my job is to keep the percentages in our favor.''

2007-04-11 15:05:05
190.   Eric Enders
187 7.09 (a), however, requires the batter to make physical contact with the catcher. (At least, that's the only way it's ever been called; to call the batter out would have required the ump to freelance a new interpretation.)
2007-04-11 15:05:45
191.   twerp
There's been talk about low radar gun readings for Schmidt, which are countered by the claim that his velocity picks up as a season goes on.

I saw where opposing batters were saying Schmidt's pitches had hair on them, no matter what the gun said. His K rates make it look like gun readings are secondary for him, anyhow.

There was also talk that the gun at DS is slow. Does anyone know what the readings were for Tomko last night? If he was 95 or so, it would seem not.

2007-04-11 15:08:07
192.   LAT
166. So how can a guy who purportedly works out and weight trains as much as JP still not have any power. Is he lifting the little colored Jazzercise weights?

(More than that,I just discovered that the word "Jzzercise" is in Microsoft's spell heck but the word "gravamen" is not. How can that be?)

2007-04-11 15:09:54
193.   Eric Enders
Baseball's official rulebook, by the way, is horribly, horribly written. Its chief feature is vagueness, which is not exactly what you're looking for in a rulebook. They need to do a complete overhaul and start over. (I'm not saying change any of the rules, necessarily, just rewrite them.) That has not been done since 1952 or '53, I believe.
2007-04-11 15:10:27
194.   Marty
I feel I'm in Microsoft's spell heck every day :-)
2007-04-11 15:12:19
195.   Hythloday
192 - Neither is kerfuffle.
2007-04-11 15:13:29
196.   s choir
190 I'm not an expert on this, but I don't think physical contact is necessary. I've seen umpires call interference when a batter steps out of the batter's box and gets inbetween a catcher and his throw to another base on a stolen base attempt.

Besides, nowhere in the rule does it say that a physical hindrance is required. Just hindrance. Either way, the rule could be written a lot better.

2007-04-11 15:14:17
197.   Eric Enders
191 Regardless of whether he picks up velocity later in the year, I don't think anyone disagrees that Schmidt now throws much slower than he did before.

Garrett Atkins in the Denver Post:
"Obviously the radar gun was not popping like it usually does, but he still has life on his pitches," Atkins said.

Tim Brown also wrote about it:
http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=ti-schmidt040907&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

2007-04-11 15:15:36
198.   Eric L
193 Yep, that's why there are tons of case books and other materials for rule interpretations.
2007-04-11 15:20:25
199.   gpellamjr
ITD doesn't have the lineups up. Any info on who's playing tonight?
2007-04-11 15:23:43
200.   LAT
As for trading Zimmerman, I can tell you two things: First, they have been trying to sign him to a long term extension for the last year and he has not been very enthusiastic (Perhaps a negotiating ploy). I think it is entirely possible that they will let him walk rather than get in a FA bidding war. (Never get involved in a land war in Asia) Plus, by then they expect to be stocked with other young studs.

Second, while I agree they won't trade him, if they did they would require lots of top quality pitching prospects, not old outfielders. They told Ned what they wanted for Soriano and it started with the initals C.B. Not much has changed.

Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2007-04-11 15:24:07
201.   Jon Weisman
199 - I don't think there's any reason to expect much different from last night's lineup.
2007-04-11 15:25:23
202.   Gen3Blue
As much as it is fun to speculate about a trade, I fear almost any trade the FO would make would be detrimental, and especially distasteful to the people in this forum. My fear is based on two things I would expect of any trade.
First, as I have tried to express, we have a very deep collection of "competent players" on the roster and in the higher minors. We have a generous payroll. No trade makes sense except for an exceptional player. To me, this is so obvious that I shiver at the thought of acquiring old vets or middle relievers.
Second, there are sharks out there, trying to get good players who cost nothing for many medium and low budget teams. I am sure that without a very wary and rational approach, any trade to the D's will involve our prospects and low cost players. Only a needy team faced with great resolve would take contracts like Tomko, Gonzo, you know the rest.
What people want is Loney,Kemp, Young, Abrue, and young pitchers etc. We are in position for NO Trade unless you are desperate.
2007-04-11 15:25:50
203.   LAT
194. I knew I didn't catch that fast enough:-) For once I'd like to post w/o a typo.
2007-04-11 16:00:46
204.   underdog
And here's the lineup - as Jon surmised, exactly the same. (Why do I keep expecting Gonzo to sit down one of these years...?)

Pierre, CF

Martin, C

Nomar, 1B

Kent, 2B

Gonzalez, LF

Valdez, SS

Ethier, RF

Betemit, 3B

Penny, P

2007-04-11 16:00:58
205.   jasonungar05
Quick Story.

I grew up in Thousand Oaks but live down in San Juan Capistrano. I work even further South in Padre country, in Carlsbad.

I take my car in this morning to get work done at a random shop to get it ready to get smogged checked.

Well I bring it into a shop down here and there on the wall was every single article from the LA times/Examinder from 1977-78 and 81 and 88 seasons. Laminated. It was awesome. He has autographs of almost every dodger from those times but considers his Koufax/Drysdale signed photo his prize.

So I got to talking and he told me he has lost clients down here cause of his "wall of fame"

So if any of you need auto work done in Carlsbad area, i'll send you to a die hard.

2007-04-11 16:09:58
206.   trainwreck
I wish we signed Daisuke.
2007-04-11 16:14:28
207.   imperabo
Smart people have said that batting order doesn't matter much, but I wonder if those people considered the possibility of a guy with lifetime Slugging Percentage of .308 batting 6th?
2007-04-11 16:18:05
208.   underdog
Dice-K's curveball should be illegal.
2007-04-11 16:33:56
209.   Tangled Up in Blue
Seriously, why is Valdez batting 6th? I am blown away by how far Ethier has fallen in the eyes of Little. Valdez should bat 8th, then Betemit might see some pitches he can hit.
2007-04-11 16:35:52
210.   underdog
I think we argued and fretted about that here yesterday. It seems possible that Valdez comes right after Gonzo, before Ethier, who is followed by Betemit... to alternate lefties and righties. Otherwise, I have no idea.
2007-04-11 16:37:53
211.   KOREAN GUY
206

I wished we gave the money spent on Pierre, Gonzo, AND Schimdt on DiceK.

2007-04-11 16:42:35
212.   berkowit28
165 "I see him [Martin] as the next "captain" of the Dodgers if they see fit to name one. "

Me too. But in this day and age it will have to wait for him to reach free agency status. Let's hope that when the time comes they don't expect him to take a cheapo "Dodger discount" but actually offer him more than any other team does. (Or - 1 or 2 years before FA status offer him one of those multi-year deals that really makes it worth his while.) Then immediately make him captain, to last at least another 5 years.

I think this has a chance of happening.

2007-04-11 16:45:09
213.   s choir
209 Betemit has taken walks in the eight-spot even late in the game when the next batter won't be a pitcher. It looks like he's doing a great job at working the count. It might be time to move him up in the order.
2007-04-11 16:45:45
214.   Benaiah
212 - I think that the first year he is arbitration eligible they should lock him up. I hope that he never plays for anyone but the Dodgers.
2007-04-11 16:47:44
215.   Benaiah
213 - Let's wait until he is hitting .100 to move him up in the order.
2007-04-11 16:48:25
216.   bhsportsguy
204 The reasoning behind this lineup is that he pretty much had stated in ST that Ethier and Betemit were going to bat 7th and 8th in the lineup. If Raffy plays on Friday, you will see Raffy lead off, Pierre bat second and Russell bat 6th. That is pretty much how Grady envisioned his day to day lineup.
2007-04-11 16:50:31
217.   Tangled Up in Blue
213 - I agree. That is what I was trying to say but I typed too quickly because I am still at work.
2007-04-11 16:55:34
218.   Tangled Up in Blue
I don't see Betemit succeeding in the 8 hole. He has done a good job drawing walks so far this season but you won't see much power from him hitting 8th because the pitchers won't challenge him.
2007-04-11 16:56:14
219.   Indiana Jon
Is Micheal Megrew still considered a top prospect?
2007-04-11 16:58:01
220.   natepurcell
219

hes still considered a prospect and if he does well in the rotation this year in AA and stays healthy, he will move up the prospect charts.

2007-04-11 16:59:08
221.   Benaiah
219 - Yes. I could see him filling out the bullpen in the future, though I guess he is starting again, right?
2007-04-11 16:59:14
222.   s choir
217 I was definitely agreeing with you, sorry if that wasn't clear.
2007-04-11 17:00:04
223.   natepurcell
ideally, you would probably want furcal+martin in the top two spots, ethier/betemit in the 6/7 holes and pierre hittin 8th.

but thats not going to happen.

2007-04-11 17:00:25
224.   Jon Weisman
Game thread soon to open up top.
2007-04-11 17:00:53
225.   Indiana Jon
221

Yes, he's starting. Pitched well in his first outing. Seems he had control problems last year, but didn't walk any in his first start.

2007-04-11 17:11:04
226.   Tangled Up in Blue
222 - I know. I think we are now agreeing to agree. Sorry, I wasn't clear either.
2007-04-11 17:15:05
227.   goofus
Why are most managers so stupid? Do you suppose GMs hire stupid managers just to make themselves look better and to have a scapegoat?

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