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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

An Arm for a Leg
2007-05-08 23:38
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

With the bullpen throwing about four innings tonight, an untrustworthy Brett Tomko pitching Wednesday night - immediately followed by a day game Thursday - and no off days until May 17, I would expect the Dodgers to call up a 12th pitcher by gametime. That should mean Wilson Valdez's journey into limbo.

Comments
2007-05-08 23:46:41
1.   Bob Timmermann
Why here's my old friend Mr. McCraig...
2007-05-09 00:03:34
2.   Eric Enders
Perhaps Loney should be the beneficiary of the inevitable Valdez DFA. With Anderson going down, there's no true lefty hitter on the bench, plus Nomar has played every game this year and is in clear need of a day off or three.
2007-05-09 00:41:34
3.   imperabo
[Response to Andrew from previous thread]

547 Don't underestimate just how bad pitchers are at hitting. The average non-pitcher last year had a OBA around 340. The average pitcher had a 158. You just can't downplay that difference and how it affects the top of the order.

I just compared the situations faced by Fucal, Lofton, and Kent last year (Fucal hit 1st, Lofton 2nd, and Kent 4th and 5th). Furcal hit with a runner on first(all varieties) 17% of the time, Lofton 28%, and Kent 38%. That tells me that hitting a power hitter first is a total waste. The second spot falls in the middle, but it's still huge difference. Kent had a runner on first 36% more often than Lofton, and more than twice as often as Furcal.

The difference for atbats with runners in scoring position wasn't nearly so pronounced. Furcal 20%, Lofton 22%, and Kent 27%. Kent had 23% more of those chances per atbat than Lofton, and 35% more than Furcal. These numbers tell me that singles still count for a lot in the first 2 spots, but doubles give up a lot in opportunity cost. Having a good batting average in the top two spots isn't a bad deal.

2007-05-09 01:48:57
4.   StolenMonkey86
LaMura went 3 scoreless with 5 k, 1bb and 2 hits in Vegas, relieving a heavily shelled Stults.
2007-05-09 02:42:40
5.   PDH5204
Jon, surely, Wilson Valdez isn't the greatest thing to come along since sliced bread, but then again, neither am I, and, well, when he goes, we will have no speed off the bench. Simply recall the game wherein Valdez forced Ethier at 2nd, but then himself took second on that pitch that squibbed to the side of the catcher and then after his arrival at 3rd, Valdez came home on the passed ball. No one on the team but Furcal and Pierre have the speed to make those plays. They presumbably won't be coming off the bench. Then consider the marathon and Valdez scoring from 1st on that close play at home on the Clark double. Again, only Furcal and Pierre have the speed to have scored on that play. So Valdez' speed played a large role in 2 of our wins. So what value are we to assign speed from our bench, and are we prepared to possibly lose a game here and there because we'll have no speed on the bench? Kemp might be a useful substitute, but what do we do when he starts? That's the one concern I have re dropping Valdez.
2007-05-09 06:15:58
6.   old dodger fan
Texas Rangers
Activated RHP Eric Gagne from the disabled list and optioned RHP Wes Littleton to Triple-A Oklahoma.

Good luck Eric.

2007-05-09 06:25:58
7.   old dodger fan
From Dodgers.com

With no days off until May 17, Little has hinted that he might soon need a 12th pitcher. After this game, maybe sooner than later.

"We're getting pretty close," he said after using Chin-hui Tsao, Chad Billingsley (three batters, three strikeouts) and Joe Beimel before Broxton. "If this game goes into the 10th, we're on the phone before the game's over."

The 12th pitcher will require the Dodgers to move a position player off the roster and unless it's new third baseman Andy LaRoche, who could be optioned back to Triple-A, moving anybody else off the roster means risking their loss for good.

"We'll do what we have to do when the time comes that we need a pitcher," said Little.

2007-05-09 07:11:50
8.   Bumsrap
If Grady is serious about doing what they have to do, whatever he means by that, adding a 12th pitcher is only doing one of those things many people think needs doing.

Right now the kids, Martin and Ethier, plus Kent are doing the hitting. They added another kid, LaRoche, and sofar he is hitting as well.

Doing what needs to be done would include putting Kemp in center now and making other player moves to allow Bigbie to be called up before June 1.

Loney struck out three times last night. He may be allowing himself to become distracted by his desire to play in the show.

2007-05-09 07:33:28
9.   old dodger fan
The pen has been working pretty hard.

All of our relievers have between 11 and 17 appearances and we average 2.7 relievers used per game. As long as we keep getting 6 innings from starters we will have a stressed 6-man bullpen. Penny and Lowe are the only starters averaging more than 6 IP per start and they are both below 6.5.

When we bring up a reliever we lose an infielder and if it is not LaRoche we may lose them for good. If we bring up Loney or Kemp we lose someone else.

Having said that I would love to see them in the lineup. It gets complicated pretty quick. I hope Ned makes good decisions.

2007-05-09 07:35:52
10.   Vishal
[8] in a perfect world, bigbie, kemp, and ethier would be playing the outfield, with gonzo and pierre coming off the bench or backing them up, and nomar playing third (and resting frequently) with loney on first, and laroche waiting a little longer at AAA in case something happens to nomar, kent or loney. that would leave gonzo, betemit and pierre as left-handed bats off the bench, and martinez, clark, and saenz batting from the right side.

however, pierre and gonzo make a lot of money, so they will continue to start and the entire discussion is moot and nothing more than fantasy talk.

2007-05-09 07:37:31
11.   Vishal
[10] actually, come to think of it, in a perfect world the dodgers would have all-stars at every position and win the world series every year.
2007-05-09 07:43:22
12.   old dodger fan
10 You did not mention Furcal, Martin or Leiberthal but I assume you would keep them as well. By my count you have 15 position players.

Bigbie
Kemp
Ethier
Gonzo
Pierre

Loney
Kent
Furcal
Nomar
Betemit
Martinez
Clark
Saenz

Martin
Lieberthal

You need to cut one or two more.

2007-05-09 07:46:26
13.   Doctor
Does any one really understand why Kemp is back in 'Vegas?
He made the team out of ST, hit 0.4-something, suffered a minor injury, has recovered, is raking for the 51's, but isn't back up.
Does that make any sense?
Its very odd that he not only lost his spot b/c of an injury, but he has now recovered and playing better than all of our outfielders- yet the job is still lost.
I guess he had to wait 10 games after being optioned to AAA, but that's past now.
2007-05-09 07:47:59
14.   PHilldodger
5 I understand what you are saying, but your argument assumes that whoever replaces Valdez on the roster or in those situations would do nothing or fail. For example, instead of forcing Ethier at second, perhaps a better hitter than Valdez would have drove him in with a double or home run. If we need speed off the bench, we can call up Choo Freeman.
It's disappointing to me that the folks who run the team are wringing their hands about calling up another pitcher because we MIGHT lose Wilson Valdez on waivers. We have another player with Valdez's "skill" set in the organization in Tomas Perez at Las Vegas.
Assuming that Luis Gonzalez and Pierre don't suffer injuries this year, I'm interested to see if Colletti and Co. allow them to take up 1,000+ at-bats.
2007-05-09 07:53:39
15.   Vishal
[12] okay, i guess we would have a player too many still.. i'd be okay with getting rid of either clark or martinez, take your pick. or russ martin... the bum! :P
2007-05-09 07:54:00
16.   gpellamjr
13 You obviously don't understand depth. We need to have our best players in AAA, so that an injury won't harm the team. If our best players were on the team and starting, and if one of them gets hurt, then the team gets worse. But, if our best players are in AAA, and on of our starters gets hurt, then the injury actually helps the team. Is it just me, or doesn't this make perfect sense?

The thing about breaking all the rules at once is that it has to happen while there is a no-hitter going on. That will take finesse.

2007-05-09 07:56:17
17.   Vishal
[16] can one jinx a game before it has started?

you'd also have to be intoxicated as well. it would take planning.

2007-05-09 08:00:33
18.   Bumsrap
I would love to think that there is a reason for Kemp hitting second in the 51s lineup if the reason is that he will soon be hitting second for the Dodgers.

12 I would rather have Clark than Saenz but since Saenz can spot play first and third he is the one to keep. Betemit has more potential than Martinez and if he can play the infield positions then I would move Martinez. So, to get Bigbie, Loney, Kemp up, I would move Martinez and Clark from your list. LaRoche would go back to the 51s until another trade were made to move either or both Gonzo and Pierre in June.

2007-05-09 08:00:36
19.   old dodger fan
16 Thank you for not breaking rule 5. I hate it when we do that here. I get too much of that at work.
2007-05-09 08:01:17
20.   regfairfield
17 And you have to begin the process of running a point into the ground before hand.
2007-05-09 08:12:10
21.   Marty
OK, I'm going to start drinking now. I'll post about 20 profanity-laced Pierre diatribes, tease D4P about his internet foibles, call out all Depo lovers as cellar-dwelling nerds, get into an Iraq/Bush argument with any Republicans on the site. I'll type everything in UPPERCASE and end every sentence with an exclamation point! I'm going to take the opposite side of any other commenter's opinion. Dice-K is going today, so I'm going to say "still got the no-no going" after each batter he faces until someone gets a hit. And just before Jon bans me I'm going to whine about how everyone else can do this but not me.
2007-05-09 08:12:20
22.   Bumsrap
16 - To move your logic over to the Yankees it would seem that AROD should sit on the bench for the purpose of depth and a lesser player would start at third, then if that player gets hurt, the Yankees could put AROD at third and be a better team. Did I get this right?
2007-05-09 08:13:25
23.   Vishal
[20] that ain't no thing; just bring up pierre or depo or something that we've already discussed ad nauseum. there are plenty of dead horses in this corral.
2007-05-09 08:16:37
24.   D4P
21
Hey wait a second: you just broke some of the rules...!
2007-05-09 08:21:45
25.   paranoidandroid
My own fantasy world scenario:

We called up LaRoche to showcase him to the Marlins or maybe even the Yankees.

Ned has feelers out there (in my fantasy) to trade a combination of LaRoche, Loney, Ethier, Betemit, Penny, and Billingsley for Miguel Cabrera or perhaps even A Rod.

The Marlins won't be able to pay Cabrera when his contract is up in 08 and they always load up on young players they can control money wise for a few years. Their trade of Pierre to the Cubs in the last year of his contract looks brilliant right now, they got three major leagues arms in return.

The Dodgers would prefer a steady veteran at third over an unproven LaRoche if we want to get deep into the postseason. We also want to create at bats for Kemp who is indeed ready for the show. We'd add power to the outfield and obviously a proven bat to third if we move Ethier and LaRoche, so while giving up a lot, we'd be getting what we need now.

A Rod can opt out and he's so hot, who knows if the Yankees want to load up on the pitching they need but Bills and Penny would have to intrigue them to consider it. The Marlins are a better fit for a trade.

My fantasy is we are about to make a move. Bigbie gives us depth if we keep him. And Anderson being out a while and Betemit being moved might be a case of addition by subtraction, we get to consider getting Kemp going now.

I think that Kemp might have either caught the Cabrera hit that won the game in the ninth, Reed might not try to come home on his arm, but Kemp would have gotten the ball to Martin much faster. Pierre has proven to be an adventure out there. If we could do that over again, I don't think he gets a five year deal from us.

2007-05-09 08:23:37
26.   Andrew Shimmin
3- We're not really talking about a power hitter, since the Dodgers haven't really got one. We're taking about a hitter with some power, like Martin, or Ethier or LuGo (if we insist on the second hitter's being LH), or Nomar. Both Ethier and Nomar are high average hitters whose PECOTA projections have them hitting only one point lower than Pierre's has him doing.

The thing is, every player on the team, save Pierre, is a hitter with some power. Furcal certainly is. So, stacking the lineup in some contorted way to stave off wasting doubles, is going to end up wasting doubles, since the number two hitter gets on base less often than everybody else likely will. Significantly less often than Lofton did. If there were a low power, high average, high on base hitter, I'd be happy enough to see him bat second. But we don't have that player, this year. So, you're prioritizing low power over high on base, which seems backwards, since low power is a bad thing, and high OBP is a good thing. Lead off doubles aren't wasted. They're sub optimal, but they're not a bad thing. And if my choices are more bases empty doubles, or more FC groundouts, I know which I'd prefer.

2007-05-09 08:24:10
27.   Vishal
[24] i think technically he was posting ABOUT breaking the rules, without actually breaking them.
2007-05-09 08:26:41
28.   KBL
26)

So then why am I batting second for my slow pitch softball team. I think I am probably 40 for 46 this season. What the heck!

2007-05-09 08:30:03
29.   paranoidandroid
3, 26

Martin is a number two hitter in my mind. If Kemp replaced an injured Pierre, I'd prefer Kemp in the sixth slot and Martin hitting second.

2007-05-09 08:41:44
30.   old dodger fan
I bat Martin 3rd after Furcal and Kemp (at least in my dream world).
2007-05-09 08:54:02
31.   regfairfield
25 What makes LaRoche unproven but Kemp ready for the show? Is trading away a giant chunk of our talent base worth it for four-five months of A-Rod?
2007-05-09 08:59:06
32.   Vishal
[31] i'd only trade for him if we can get him to sign a new contract agreement. on the one hand, that's unlikely, because he's a-rod and he's a boras man and he will surely want several teams to bid on him. on the other hand, only major market teams are going to be likely or willing to afford him, and LA is certainly one of those few. the mets would not be interested either... who else would be a suitor? the angels? white sox? it's not a long list. he may agree to a lucrative extension in LA.
2007-05-09 09:05:28
33.   ToyCannon
All ARod trade talk should cease. If we really want Arod we will talk to Boras at the end of the year. The Yankee's are not spending 28 Million on Clemens to then trade their best player.
2007-05-09 09:06:59
34.   paranoidandroid
31, 32
A Rod is less likely than Cabrera if either might be moved.

After the Drew situation, Ned would be sure that A Rod would either not opt out, or would have a contract extension worked out.

If he does opt out next year, the Yanks get nothing. They need pitching. Bills and Penny (who is in a great first half again, trade value as high as it can be, wasn't much in tough spring) and LaRoche might get A Rod, but I think it would take more to get this deal done than a Cabrera deal. Plus the Marlins have gone this route before many times.

2007-05-09 09:07:21
35.   Jon Weisman
New post up top.

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