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About Jon
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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
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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

Dodgers Need To Be More Kuoactive
2008-06-11 12:30
by Jon Weisman

Are the Dodgers Clutch?
From the Dodger press notes:
Last night, all six of the Dodger RBI came with two out and runners in scoring position. ... Los Angeles is hitting .283 (77-for-272) in those situations, which is tied with Pittsburgh and trails only St. Louis (.288) in the NL this season.
To further explore the Dodgers' 2008 hitting with runners on base, click this link. Some of what you'll find is mixed; in any case, sample-size caveats apply throughout.
Joe Torre's strange reluctance to use Hong-Chih Kuo in important situations is explored by Andrew Grant at True Blue L.A.:

... Despite being better according to both simple and advanced stats, Joe Torre refuses to use Kuo at all. Since splitting a start with Chan Ho on May 17th, Kuo has made just three appearances, once when down 4-0 against the Cardinals, down 6-3 against the Mets, and down 6-1 against the Mets again. In that same timespan, Scott Proctor, by far the least effective Dodger reliever this year, has appeared nine times, three times in medium to high leverage situations. Chan Ho Park has appeared six times, four of them in high leverage situations.

Even though Kuo is third on the team in ERA and leads Chan Ho and Proctor in every pitching category from ERA to walk rate to WHIP, Kuo is the one relegated to mop up duty while the latter is being used while the outcome of the game is still in still in doubt. The entire year, Kuo has only faced 20 batters in high leverage situations, versus 52 in medium leverage and 80 in low leverage. Kuo is our third best reliever according to FIP but he's rarely, if ever used when the game actually matters.

What's even more bizarre is that Joe Torre's low opinion of Kuo seems based on one start, where he allowed five runs in 3.2 innings. After that start, Kuo was removed from the rotation, and has only pitched eight times since, twice in high leverage situations. This is completely insane behavior because outside of that outing, Kuo has pitched 33.2 innings, and allowed three runs. We have a lefty who can strikeout over a batter an inning, and he's been relegated to Scott Erickson status seemingly entirely because of one bad start. ...

Comments (231)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2008-06-11 12:42:56
1.   D4P
Last night, all six of the Dodger RBI came with two out and runners in scoring position. ... Los Angeles is hitting .283 (77-for-272) in those situations, which is tied with Pittsburgh and trails only St. Louis (.288) in the NL this season.

6th in the NL in SLG "in those situations", and last in the NL in IsoP.

2008-06-11 12:43:18
2.   Eric Enders
Color me baffled about this too. And angry.

There was no reason any sane person would bring Scott Proctor in during the 6th inning last night.

2008-06-11 12:43:22
3.   Daniel Zappala
I suggest that Torre call Bob and ask him when to use Kuo.
2008-06-11 12:44:51
4.   Jon Weisman
1 - Well, slugging is an ongoing problem for the Dodgers, but RISP is about the time you least need slugging.
2008-06-11 12:45:05
5.   underdog
It's a great point/question, Andrew and Jon, and I think it would be good if someone would get Jackson or Leung or someone to ask about it for us. Or even post the question on the Dodgers main blog, since they do sometimes respond to those questions. Or ask Ken Gurnick in his mailbag. Sometimes even doing that gets the pressure on. Maybe there's an explanation we're not seeing, but it's hard to imagine that right now.

At first I thought they were saving Kuo for when Kershaw starts, making the assumption that Kershaw couldn't go particularly deep. But that is clearly not the case at this point.

Curious and curiouser...

2008-06-11 12:45:12
6.   sporky
The subheading of the rookie of the month article is "Third baseman seizes chance to shine on surging Dodgers."


2008-06-11 12:46:50
7.   Eric Enders
You can surge downward, right?
2008-06-11 12:48:00
8.   D4P
Maybe they meant "splurging".
2008-06-11 12:48:39
9.   Bob Timmermann
Now, you really can't surge downward. It comes from an Old French word meaning "to rise."
2008-06-11 12:49:49
10.   Eric Enders
Some of the things Torre does continue to really baffle me. Last night he was faced with the most obvious double-switch situation in the world, and instead chose to have Broxton bat and ground into a double play.

Hopefully the Dodger beat writers will soon cease to be in awe of Torre and begin to ask him the tough (and relevant) questions.

2008-06-11 12:50:42
11.   Daniel Zappala
The Dodgers aren't really sinking either. Maybe they meant floating.
2008-06-11 12:51:02
12.   Bob Timmermann
Broxton actually bunted into a DP and it took a great play from Adrian Gonzalez combined with Broxton's three-toed sloth like speed to make it a DP.
2008-06-11 12:52:52
13.   Bob Timmermann
"Three-toed sloth like speed" likely needs a lot of hyphens, but I'm not sure where they all go.
2008-06-11 12:56:05
14.   underdog
6 Maybe they actually meant "surgeon", because of all the ailments?
2008-06-11 12:57:07
15.   cargill06
my buddy also sees the snipes in angel berroa...

"you went from the dude in oceans eleven playing SS for you guys, to bobby rayburn."

2008-06-11 12:57:41
16.   imperabo
(three-toed sloth)-like
2008-06-11 12:57:42
17.   sporky
If Torre's goal is to give everyone an AB, he only has Beimel, Proctor and Wade left.
2008-06-11 12:58:34
18.   cargill06
i get the feeling joe thinks kuo is most useful if he is used when a pitcher gets "lit up" and has to eat innings. i hope he is not that dumb, i am getting really annoyed with his lack of apperance's
2008-06-11 13:01:57
19.   bigcpa
Haven't seen this posted here... Steven Goldman had a nice take on Torre in yesterday's NY Sun:

In all his years as a manager, Torre hasn't learned that the batting order is a vehicle for distributing playing time, not for emphasizing speed and power... whatever managerial genius Torre possesses has failed to manifest itself in his approaches to the Dodgers' problems.

2008-06-11 13:03:00
20.   goofus
Why is anyone baffled? Baseball managers are required to be incompetent. Why do they only hire old men? Do you know how many 12 year old kids out there who could manage a team better than him. The league has rules that forbid the owner from managing. Is it so unbelievable that the league and individual owners don't really want to see dominance, they want parity, competition, and lots of attendance. Granted, some teams try to shift the odds in their favor, but even they won't go far enough to kill the goose that lays Golden Eggs.
2008-06-11 13:06:58
21.   Eric Enders
We've had enough golden goose eggs already this year, thanks.
2008-06-11 13:07:51
22.   bryanf
20 What?
2008-06-11 13:08:01
23.   Bob Timmermann
Eric Wedge is an ancient 40 years old. Joe Girardi is 44. Trey Hillman is 45. Fredi Gonzalez is 44. Manny Acta is 39.

I guess all the managers need to be sent to Carousel.

2008-06-11 13:11:23
24.   bablue
Totally agree. Its getting ridiculous at this point. He should have put Kuo in for a few innings yesterday.
2008-06-11 13:14:14
25.   goofus
OK. Anger overide. I think the younger managers make more logical decisions. I suppose it's possible the job pressure is so great it affects a manager's ability to make good decisions. Never been there, so I can't say for sure. But I'd sure like to see Russel manage a game. I am the same age as Torre, guess I'm allowed to criticize his faults, I criticize my own....
2008-06-11 13:16:09
26.   GMac In The 909
20 Do you know how many 12 year old kids out there who could manage a team better than him.

Like this kid?

2008-06-11 13:16:51
27.   sporky
Not that I necessarily agree with this, but is it possible that Torre values Kuo too much and wants to put him in under specific situations (multiple innings in med-high leverage situations), but when those situations never arise, he has to resort to using him in less than desirable conditions instead?

Kuo seems to need more time off between appearances than the average reliever, making it slightly trickier managing his usage... which begs the question, why the heck doesn't he start him?

2008-06-11 13:19:51
28.   okdodge
26 I was wondering how long it would take for the obvious Little Big League reference. Imagine if we could get Billy Heywood to manager and then a talent like Henry Rowengardner alongside Kershaw, then the World Series would be ours!!
2008-06-11 13:20:21
29.   fanerman
Kuo could clean up after Kershaw. Since it seems like due to inning limitation and what not, Kershaw probably won't be pitching more than 5-6 innings, maybe they could just pair up the two of them so they pitch on the same day.
2008-06-11 13:27:34
30.   Jon Weisman
Talk about your bad marriages: Katherine Heigl and Grey's Anatomy ...

"I did not feel that I was given the material this season to warrant an Emmy nomination and in an effort to maintain the integrity of the academy organization, I withdrew my name from contention," she tells Gold Derby. "In addition, I did not want to potentially take away an opportunity from an actress who was given such materials."

2008-06-11 13:30:00
31.   GMac In The 909
Katherine Heigl should leave Grey's Anatomy for me. I'd treat her much better.
2008-06-11 13:30:14
32.   Bob Timmermann
Perhaps she should just submit material from "27 Dresses" and see if anyone notices the difference.

Grey's Anatomy was de-DVR'd two seasons ago.

2008-06-11 13:31:30
33.   El Lay Dave
Just speculating, but perhaps the Dodger decision-makers determined that Kuo is too fragile to start every fifth start and/or last more than four innings or so, and/or to be warmed up in the bullpen too often without coming in, and needs more than one day off per IP. (That doesn't sound too far-fetched given Kuo's well-documented health history.) Accordingly, Kuo gets up off his stool only in situations he is highly likely to enter and involving multiple-inning appearances; that is mostly long relief where the starter is clearly either going to have to be rescued or PH for before reaching the sixth inning.
2008-06-11 13:31:35
34.   natepurcell

She is so hot.

2008-06-11 13:31:47
35.   Paul Scott
Torre doesn't like Kuo. I think it is as simple as that. He'll keep playing clearly inferior players over Kuo for as long as he can. Torre is just another Tracy. The only difference is that he got to ride the Yankees' dynasty long enough to be called a genius.

You could see this most clearly when he would choose to start Park or Loaiza because "having a second lefty in the bullpen is invaluable." I said then that this reminded me of Tracy and Choi and I think it has borne out.

It is really very disappointing that a farm system that lucked into a bunch of winners is going to be completely wasted by incompetence in management (and ownership) both in the front office and on the field.

In 2004 I was convinced that 2008 would start a Dodger Dynasty. Now I believe we will be lucky to see more than a couple pennants. There are two superior organizations (Az and SD) in our division. Overtime that is going to matter more than anything else.

2008-06-11 13:33:24
36.   Eric Stephen
Wasn't Grey Anatomy the original working title of "The Golden Girls"?

That non-double switch last night with Broxton was kind of baffling. Is there a site that tracks double switches made by managers?

2008-06-11 13:33:32
37.   imperabo
Kuo is still a big health concern. Maybe they are cautiously trying to stretch him out to be a starter again with long relief. You're not going find many high leverage situations there. As long as he stays healthy he's a great insurance policy either for the starters or relievers for the rest of the season.
2008-06-11 13:35:42
38.   delias man
Speaking of health concerns, Heigl smokes waaaaaay to much for my taste.
2008-06-11 13:36:16
39.   Bob Timmermann
Ahh, San Diego. Where draft picks go to die.
2008-06-11 13:36:26
40.   LogikReader

She was in Knocked Up!!!

and... 34

Ohhhh, yeah. Remember when "My Father the Hero" came out? I was only 12, but I thought she was hot then. Thankfully I was only 12, otherwise there'd have been some problems :-)

2008-06-11 13:36:59
41.   cargill06
38 man, i didn't know that. she just went down a few notches, thanks for ruining my day.
2008-06-11 13:37:50
42.   Jon Weisman
33/37 - There have been high-leverage opportunties to use a well-rested Kuo for any kind of length, short or long, and Torre has avoided doing so. He has almost entirely been using Kuo like an 11th or 12th man - a bullpen innings-eater - instead of taking advantage of his talent.
2008-06-11 13:37:52
43.   LogikReader

I'd be inclined to agree, but she's still hot. How'd you find that out, delias?

2008-06-11 13:37:56
44.   GMac In The 909
41 She also put on an Oscar-worthy performance in The Ringer.
2008-06-11 13:38:06
45.   El Lay Dave
Katherine Heigl is a young actress who feels entitled and doesn't understand how to play the game the right way. -- Jeff Kent

Seriously, taking a shot at the writers is not a smart move and lacks tact and class.

2008-06-11 13:39:37
46.   JoeyP
Kuo's the long man and only comes in whenever the starters have been shelled.

Its a definite misuse of him, but as long as the Dodgers starters work deep into the game, you're not going to see Kuo bc Torre doesnt see him as a traditional 1 inning high leverage guy.

To Torre, he's just a really good mop up man.

2008-06-11 13:39:40
47.   trainwreck
I guess she no longer fears having to make movies like Bug Buster again.
2008-06-11 13:41:02
48.   natepurcell

That does lower her overall hotness grade but she's still hot.

2008-06-11 13:42:02
49.   dianagramr

One can "updive" though

2008-06-11 13:43:03
50.   sporky
Out of curiosity, have there been any reports that Kuo needs more time to warm up?
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2008-06-11 13:43:35
51.   dianagramr
12 , 13

As a Scrabble nerd, I know that an "ai" is the term for a three-toed sloth:

2008-06-11 13:43:42
52.   Ken Noe
Torre overuses Proctor. In other news, sun rises in morning.

"Surging": for this team, 3 out 4 is a surge.

2008-06-11 13:44:34
53.   blue22
ToyCannon's eagerly anticipated Lackey/Kazmir matchup today is proving to be quite interesting indeed.
2008-06-11 13:47:06
54.   JoeyP
I also think that since Kuo's the long reliever, Torre wont use him after the 5th inning, even in a high leverage situation. The reason being is that if he uses him for one game, one inning---> he isnt available for the next game if a long reliever is needed then.

Torre needs to prioritize that it is better to use your best relievers in high leverage spots, rather than just keep them out for fear that the next day he wont have anyone that can pitch when the is down 8-1 in the 4th. If its 8-1, who really cares who pitches at that point?

2008-06-11 13:47:24
55.   delias man
43 I watch a lot of TMZ
2008-06-11 13:47:25
56.   Bob Timmermann
Ai is also the name of a Japanese restaurant by my home.

I've also learned that you can use "luau", but not "heiau."

And "soyuz" is acceptable and that's just not right.

2008-06-11 13:48:12
57.   sporky
53 You jinxed him!
2008-06-11 13:48:19
58.   Bob Timmermann
The game in Anaheim is interesting, but not euphemistically so.
2008-06-11 13:49:19
59.   dianagramr

She was Steven Seagal's niece in 1995's "Under Siege 2" ....

who knew what was ahead for her ...

2008-06-11 13:49:24
60.   blue22
57 - I have Lackey in a fantasy league. Needed to shake things up a bit :)
2008-06-11 13:49:43
61.   trainwreck
It would be funnier if Katherine was really into dipping.
2008-06-11 13:49:58
62.   guy clinch
It seems as if Torre believes his players have very particular roles. For example, Pierre=leadoff guy, Kent=middle lineup slugger. This is damaging when the assumptions of a given player's ability are incorrect. This seems like what has happened with Kuo. He has a role as an "innings-eater" for whatever reason, and Torre will not let Kuo's performance get in the way. A bit more flexibility would be nice.
2008-06-11 13:50:14
63.   El Lay Dave
42 Agreed. Kuo has made only two appearances of 1 IP or less. Also, I think he's only come in mid-inning twice, after Lowe's shortest start and Broxton's worst appearance. I do think there's something to the idea that they don't want to warm him up and NOT bring him in, as happened to Saito last night; I think they don't think Kuo can physically take that.
2008-06-11 13:50:39
64.   dianagramr

Sounds like most of the other DT readers have Heigl in their fantasy leagues ...

2008-06-11 13:51:41
65.   Shaun P
Torre likes his bullpen guys in their roles, and in their roles they stay. It takes desperation, or a new reliever signed to a huge contract, or lying to Torre about your health (see Tanyon Sturtze), to cause a change. Especially his favorites, like Proctor, who I'll bet never pitches outside of the 7th or 8th inning, and only in the 8th when Broxton is unavailable. Take it from this Yankees fan . . . I've seen this before.
2008-06-11 13:52:51
66.   El Lay Dave
65 EDSP came in in the 6th last night.
2008-06-11 13:52:52
67.   sporky
64 Heh.
2008-06-11 13:53:05
68.   bryanf
62 Interesting point. He definitely seems to pigeon-hole some guys.
2008-06-11 13:58:54
69.   sporky
I'm starting to regret my decision to have caffeine and Funyuns for lunch.
2008-06-11 14:00:08
70.   El Lay Dave
65 In fact, Proctor has 1 hold and 0 blown saves, with only 4 "high-leverage" appearances, one of which was the aforementioned one last night. So he is mopping up a bit too.
2008-06-11 14:00:16
71.   dianagramr

hey .... its good enough for Andruw ....

2008-06-11 14:01:36
72.   StolenMonkey86
I don't think Joe Torre is a good manager, but at least he's not Dusty Baker. I think that was the real reason the Dodgers asked for an exemption from interviewing a minority candidate - Colletti totally would have gone for Baker.
2008-06-11 14:02:55
73.   Bob Timmermann
I really want the plumber to come by and work on my shower because I believe I am approaching ripeness.
2008-06-11 14:04:04
74.   El Lay Dave
64 Are those leagues based on only three vital statistics?
2008-06-11 14:04:31
75.   El Lay Dave
73 Just like this season's peaches.
2008-06-11 14:06:28
76.   CodyS
35 you have downgraded your opinion to where you see the dodgers only winning a couple pennants in the next few years. You win the best and most optimistic fan award for the day.
2008-06-11 14:12:27
77.   Bob Timmermann
I am now going to do something to guarantee the plumber's arrival.
2008-06-11 14:15:05
78.   StolenMonkey86
77 - Dare I ask what you ate for lunch?
2008-06-11 14:17:45
79.   fiddlestick
Kuo's been injured in every other role or usage pattern they've tried with him. Is it better to have him healthy, but seldom used or disabled?
2008-06-11 14:19:01
80.   Eric Enders
70 You must be defining high leverage differently than I do, because Proctor's had a ton of high-leverage appearances. He's entered four games that were tied and eight one-run games.
2008-06-11 14:19:10
81.   Bob Timmermann
No, I took a shower. I thought he would come while I was showering.

I was wrong.

2008-06-11 14:22:48
82.   Eric Enders
79 Kuo didn't get removed from this year's rotation because of injury. He got removed because he had one bad game.

I don't buy, at all, the notion that being used once every ten days in long relief is the only way to keep Kuo from getting injured. But even if that were true, why would you go out of your way to use him only in blowout games, instead of once a week in a situation that matters? Do the numbers on the scoreboard make him more prone to injury as well?

2008-06-11 14:23:41
83.   Jon Weisman
79 - Are you suggesting using him last night on nine days' rest in a close game would have injured him?
2008-06-11 14:23:42
84.   Eric Enders
81 The best way to guarantee the plumber will actually show up is to fix the problem yourself first.
2008-06-11 14:24:26
85.   Bob Timmermann
Old friend Wilson Valdez has signed with the Tokyo Yakult Swallows.

He will fill in at shortstop for the Swallows when their regular shortstop goes to play in the Olympics.

I believe all 12 Japanese teams have to contribute two players to the Olympic team, which will be managed by Burning Hat Hoshino.

2008-06-11 14:24:28
86.   silverwidow
LaRoche...1B or 3B tonight?

First is probably the "safe" pick.

2008-06-11 14:26:12
87.   fiddlestick
82 I don't agree with his use, but wouldn't you agree that as freakishly talented as he is, his body thusfar can't handle the strain? Would you consider the possibility that they're handling him with an overabundance of caution given his previous injuries and surgeries?
2008-06-11 14:26:41
88.   arborial
56 As someone born and raised in Hawaii I am impressed by your knowledge of a heiau. My guess regarding the scrabble ruling is that luau has become part of the English vernacular whereas not many could tell you what a heiau is.
2008-06-11 14:26:45
89.   Bob Timmermann
Bob's weaknesses:
1) Evaluating baseball prospects
2) Plumbing
3) Meeting strangers at big social gatherings

Bob's strengths:
1) Catcher's interference calls
2) Stealing his neighbor's wifi signal
3) Giving cats pills

2008-06-11 14:27:30
90.   GMac In The 909
My sick and twisted prediction: Kuo will flourish only after he is traded to the Rays for Al Reyes.
2008-06-11 14:27:53
91.   El Lay Dave
80 I was using b-r's leverage index, b-r's 2008 game log for Proctor, and their definition:
High Leverage is a value over 1.5 (20% of plays). Medium is 0.7 to 1.5 (about 40% of plays). Low is less than 0.7 (about 40% of plays)

According to the same, Proctor has come into 4 tied games, 1 with a one-run lead, 7 with a one-run deficit.

2008-06-11 14:29:24
92.   kinbote
86 I predict 3B. DeWitt could use a day off.
2008-06-11 14:32:58
93.   El Lay Dave
86 I agree with 92 , presuming that Torre has noticed. Plus, Loney has a hitting streak and I can imagine Torre wanting to have LaRoche season debut in a comfortable position. And he can leave LaRoche in DeWitt's seven-spot instead of batting him higher or moving up DeWitt.
2008-06-11 14:34:05
94.   Jon Weisman
87 - The only thing I'm saying is that even if one were to concede, hypothetically, that he shouldn't start, that he needs frequent rest, their use of him based on his performance is still nonsensical.

Kuo has pitched in three games (totaling 7 1/3 innings) since May 17, none of them with a margin of fewer than four runs when he entered.

2008-06-11 14:34:40
95.   Eric Enders
87 I think it's possible that they're concerned about getting him hurt. I also think they're misguided if that's the reason for it. And, as noted above, injury concerns don't explain why he's only used in mop-up situations.

The reason you don't want a guy getting hurt is because he's useless to your team while he's hurt, right? So the Dodgers' solution to that is: make him useless to your team anyway, so he can't become useless to your team by getting hurt. It doesn't make any sense.

The thing to do with Kuo is just let him pitch. If he gets hurt, he gets hurt. At least you've gotten whatever value you can out of him.

I don't get the notion that letting him pitch like a normal pitcher will automatically result in an injury. That's an idea shaped much more by frustration over the past than by what's likely to happen in the future.

2008-06-11 14:35:06
96.   arborial
85 I love this shot of Wilson in his new uniform.

Dynamic and Dramatic!

2008-06-11 14:35:40
97.   silverwidow
RE: LaRoche at 1B

I picked it because Torre is probably still concerned about his throwing hand.

2008-06-11 14:36:15
98.   Eric Enders
91 But B-R's splits show Proctor pitching in 10 high-leverage games this year. (Unless I'm reading something wrong.)
2008-06-11 14:37:44
99.   fiddlestick
83 Not at all. I agree with most here that Kuo is underutilized. What I'm saying is that it's no less reasonable to posit that the team is limiting his innings by initially relegating him to a mop-up role than to think that Torre has a personal vendetta against him or that he thinks he's a bad pitcher because of one bad start when he's had multiple dominant relief stints.

If Chan Ho continues to be lucky for a few more weeks and Kuo is able to remain healthy to assume a more prominent role later in the year in the event of an injury or the clock striking midnight on Chan Ho, I can live with that.

2008-06-11 14:37:57
100.   Bob Timmermann
Wilson's new team is off to a 25-32 start. And they aren't in last because Yokohama is an abhorrent 16-41.

Hanshin is dominating the Central League this year, playing .690 ball and leading by 8 1/2 games over defending champ Chunichi.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2008-06-11 14:51:18
101.   Daniel Zappala
We can eliminate one of Bob's strengths if we wrap his house in tinfoil.
2008-06-11 14:55:40
102.   Bob Timmermann
Or you could just figure out why my signal in my apartment goes out from time to time for no reason.
2008-06-11 14:59:44
103.   CanuckDodger
When I complained last night about Proctor being brought in in a high leverage situation, I wanted Wade brought in, or Park, and I never expected Kuo. I believe it is true that Kuo needs extra time to warm up, and he has said so himself at some point. And he really does need a lot of rest between appearances. A manager has to plan ahead to use him. I just wish that "planning ahead" didn't mean only sticking him in games where we trail by a bunch of runs.
2008-06-11 15:01:57
104.   Bob Timmermann

and it's popped up for a double play.

2008-06-11 15:05:47
105.   Eric Enders
103 While you may be right, it should be noted that Torre has said exactly the opposite. One of his excuses for sending Kuo to the bullpen was that he needed less warm-up time than the other long relievers (which at that time was Park and Loaiza).
2008-06-11 15:14:47
106.   Bumsrap
I only hope Jon's recent topics and thoughtful observations along with most of the comments are being read with an open mind by the right people in the Dodger organization.

Clearly, the younger Dodgers have not reached their most productive ages and until they do, we all know they are now less than they will be. We don't need anybody from the Dodger organization saying anything about their weaknesses. They should be saying how well they are already performing and are excited about what lies ahead for each and all of their young talent.

Then, Jeff Kent, Normar, Jones, Torre, Colletti should admit that the older more experienced players have not been able to add sufficient production into the mix of younger players so far to get the Dodgers over the hump and into a winning record.

This is what Colletti should be saying: We have great pitching and our younger players are already turning valuable experience into making the Dodgers a better team. If our veteran players begin to produce more than they have to date, we expect to start winning a much higher percentage of our games.

If we do not start winning at least 55% of our games, we are willing to make changes this year and those changes will be looking forward and not backwards. Looking forward means we will put this team in the hands of our promising younger players and the older players will have to step aside.

We need more clubhouse leadership and we realize it is difficult for veteran players to give this leadership if they are not performing adequately and we realize it is difficult for a younger player to step up in a leadership role when there are veteran players intimidating them.

If we make trades it will be for young players on the rise and not for higher priced veterans, the latter of which has not provided the success we were hoping for.

If we don't start winning the players on the hot seat are: Jones, Furcal, Schmidt, Pierre, Nomar, Penny, Lowe, and Kent.

2008-06-11 15:15:29
107.   blue22
104 - Was that Napoli trying to drop the bunt down? Egads.
2008-06-11 15:18:16
108.   Bob Timmermann
Jonathan Ogden is going to retire from the NFL.

Greatest UCLA football player ever?

2008-06-11 15:20:54
109.   cargill06
umm, does something seem not right? i was looking at the line for tonights game, the dodgers are -103. wouldn't you think they should be bigger favorites than that? maybe i'm just being bias.
2008-06-11 15:23:31
110.   cargill06
108 aikman.
2008-06-11 15:25:17
111.   cargill06
108 or freddie mitchell, go ahead and ask him.
2008-06-11 15:25:38
112.   blue22
108 - Certainly greatest in the NFL. Cade McNown is still my favorite Bruin of all time.
2008-06-11 15:27:48
113.   Bob Timmermann
I'm looking at a line that has the Padres at -155 tonight and tomorrow.
2008-06-11 15:29:08
114.   Bob Timmermann
So I guess you're old if you remember Rick Neuheisel playing for UCLA?

Or Jerry Robinson.

Or John Sciarra.

2008-06-11 15:31:03
115.   Eric Enders
108 Kenny Washington?
2008-06-11 15:31:18
116.   cargill06
113 what line is that??? and what do they have the dodgers at? am i missing something, my sportsbook has the pads at -150 tomorrow.
2008-06-11 15:31:59
117.   arborial
So in the paper today it talked about LaRoche picking up at bats against LHP in place of Loney and DeWitt. The article then goes on to quote that DeWitt is batting .348 against lefties.

I am not arguing the merits of starting LaRoche, more a curiosity about the higher numbers posted by DeWitt against lefties.

My question is, does this represent a small sample size (46AB)? Or is it because he is new to pitchers and therefore they haven't figured him out? Or is it possible that, although it is not the norm, a person could be a better hitter against same handed pitching?

2008-06-11 15:32:16
118.   cargill06
116 i mean am i missing something?? the better team as an underdog with a far superior starting pitcher?
2008-06-11 15:32:57
119.   El Lay Dave
98 B-R's game log shows Proctor entering in four high-leverage situations: 4/6, 4/14, 5/1, last night (LevI > 1.5). B-R's splits shows ten games in which Proctor faced a batter (I think) in a high-leverage situation. The "Leverage" split Game columns totals more games than he has appeared in.
2008-06-11 15:33:32
120.   Bob Timmermann
I just clicked on the "odds" link at Yahoo Sports.
2008-06-11 15:34:05
121.   Daniel Zappala
102 I would totally be your IT guy if I lived in LA.
2008-06-11 15:35:27
122.   Bob Timmermann
The solution seems to be sticking a pen in the reset button on the base station.
2008-06-11 15:35:41
123.   Daniel Zappala
Another Angels win, now 15 games over .500. Lackey coming back strong has been huge for them.
2008-06-11 15:36:33
124.   D4P
So I guess you're old if you remember Rick Neuheisel playing for UCLA?

Do you remember him cheating?

2008-06-11 15:36:50
125.   Kevin Lewis

Couldn't all the people on that show say the same thing?

Honestly, what is she trying to accomplish with that comment? If you hate the role and type of character you play, move on at this point. Although, now I wonder if she is under contract and hates the type of character they have turned her into, so now I have more respect for her since I started this comment.

2008-06-11 15:37:05
126.   Daniel Zappala
122 Check for a firmware upgrade. Otherwise, you may need a new base station.
2008-06-11 15:39:13
127.   El Lay Dave
97 If Torre is afraid of LaRoche's throwing hand, maybe he shouldn't have been called up. (Although that is an explanation for the lack of a 2-for-1 with Broxton last night as well.)
2008-06-11 15:40:42
128.   Bob Timmermann
Hey, whadda know? There's an Airport upgrade available.

I'll be offline for a few minutes.

2008-06-11 15:41:50
129.   El Lay Dave
Even if I agree with 106 , that is not what I would want Colletti saying publicly.
2008-06-11 15:42:22
130.   Kevin Lewis
Wow, Bob sprung for the Airport Base Station? I am all about Apple, but some of the peripherals are just too pricey for me.
2008-06-11 15:45:07
131.   68elcamino427
Milton Bradley is blocking Jeff Kent as DH in Texas. That would be a great spot for Kent now.
2008-06-11 15:45:43
132.   silverwidow
I wonder if McCourt has veto power on trades.
2008-06-11 15:47:52
133.   Daniel Zappala
I'm going to drive home from work while Bob is rebooting his base station. I assume 30 minutes will give him enough time to get back online and see if he survived the upgrade.
2008-06-11 15:49:45
134.   68elcamino427
Furcal's back appears to be problematic. The Dodgers deserve a shortsop that they can rely on. I wonder if the Dodgers will now trade for a shortstop?

Yuniesky Betancourt?

2008-06-11 15:55:20
135.   Bob Timmermann
And we're back.
2008-06-11 15:55:30
136.   silverwidow
Yuniesky Betancourt?

Yep, for Berroa. Make it happen. ;)

2008-06-11 15:56:14
137.   Jon Weisman
Tonight's lineup:

Pierre, LF
Young, RF
Kent, 2B
Martin, C
Kemp, CF
LaRoche, 1B
DeWitt, 3B
Berroa, SS
Billingsley, P

2008-06-11 15:56:38
138.   D4P
Are we looking live at your apartment?
2008-06-11 15:57:19
139.   cargill06
137 joe you're so close, let's try young in LF and pierre at DR (designated runner)
2008-06-11 15:59:41
140.   silverwidow
137 Well, my theory might be correct.
2008-06-11 16:01:07
141.   LoneStar7
137 so does loney's hitting streak end? barring a pinch hit at some point
2008-06-11 16:01:27
142.   Jim Hitchcock
69 Okay, now I understand the origin of `squee'.
2008-06-11 16:02:08
143.   Bob Timmermann
Loney's hitting streak won't end if he never enters the game.
2008-06-11 16:02:45
144.   Jim Hitchcock
141 No.
2008-06-11 16:03:10
145.   68elcamino427
Is Adam LaRoche starting at first for the Pirates tonight?
2008-06-11 16:03:35
146.   Jim Hitchcock
You'd of thought I could type a two letter word faster than Bob could typw a sentence...
2008-06-11 16:04:13
147.   Jim Hitchcock
146 But at least two letter words are tough to typo.
2008-06-11 16:04:49
148.   Bob Timmermann
Yes he is.
2008-06-11 16:06:23
149.   arborial
122 I thought you were talking about how Blake DeWitt came to give you tech support. Man, that Blake is talented.
2008-06-11 16:06:44
150.   jasonungar07
That was a fun Angel game to be at.

I know so close if it was only this


Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2008-06-11 16:07:18
151.   Bob Timmermann
And if you think that two A. LaRoches playing on the same day in the same position is unusual, I present you the case of the two Hal Smiths, both of whom were catchers in the NL for a few years in the 1960s.
2008-06-11 16:08:11
152.   El Lay Dave
150 You left out Loney.
2008-06-11 16:08:16
153.   underdog
I agree with 139 , so close and yet...

Will be kinda fun to see Andy and Blake in the same line-up for the first time, though.

I wish Pee Wee could play SS. Then all our problems would be solved.

2008-06-11 16:09:29
154.   Jon Weisman
Tentative Alert

I have narrowed it down to two possible dates for a Dodger Thoughts picnic: August 16 or September 13.

End Tentative Alert

2008-06-11 16:10:16
155.   Alex41592
Gammons on Baseball Tonight talking about the Dodgers looking to trade Penny.
2008-06-11 16:12:03
156.   silverwidow
155 Of course. Colletti doesn't like him at all.
2008-06-11 16:12:08
157.   Eric Stephen
Will this take the place of a DT Day at Dodger Stadium?
2008-06-11 16:12:24
158.   jasonungar07
yeah i did. my bad. 152 didnt mean to obviously. throw him anywhere there in the middle
2008-06-11 16:13:20
159.   underdog
156 - I'm not sure I do all that much either these days.

What would be a fair return for Penny, I wonder?

2008-06-11 16:13:43
160.   Alex41592
A rumor Gammons talked about was Penny to the Yankees for Robinson Cano, but Gammons didn't think that would happen.
2008-06-11 16:13:45
161.   Jon Weisman
157 - Yes. Tentatively!
2008-06-11 16:15:28
162.   ImprobableImpossible
FWIW, there's another game of some interest also taking place in L.A. on Sept. 13.
2008-06-11 16:15:31
163.   LoneStar7
Did Dimmagio ever sit during his hitting streak..
2008-06-11 16:16:11
164.   Bob Timmermann
2008-06-11 16:16:15
165.   underdog
Although I trust Gammons slightly more than I do Rosenthal, at this point rumors are schmumors until we hear from those more intimately involved, or frankly, until a trade actually happens.
2008-06-11 16:16:47
166.   LoneStar7
163 dimaggio excuse my typo
2008-06-11 16:17:42
167.   Bob Timmermann
Robinson Cano? So the Dodgers would then take Jeff Kent and do what? Arrange for some Russian mobsters to make him disappear?
2008-06-11 16:17:59
168.   Alex41592
165 - Agreed
2008-06-11 16:18:14
169.   Jon Weisman
162 - Not during picnic hours.
2008-06-11 16:18:17
170.   regfairfield
I'd say that's insane, but, you know, Hank Steinbrenner.
2008-06-11 16:18:45
171.   Jon Weisman
162 - Oh, you must mean something else.
2008-06-11 16:18:48
172.   Bob Timmermann
That game should be in the evening.

And I'm no longer tuned in to the needs of USC football fans like I had to be before.

2008-06-11 16:19:56
173.   LoneStar7
167 what was said about Robbie Cano?

My roomate at school from Darien, CT idolizes cano..

2008-06-11 16:20:28
174.   Bob Timmermann
Daniel won't be able to come on September 13 because he will be watching BYU dismember UCLA in Provo.

Just how many more times does UCLA have to play BYU in football? That will be three games in about a year.

2008-06-11 16:21:21
175.   El Lay Dave
154 If we actually have that DT softball game within the picnic, we'd better start stocking up on Ace bandages and ice now.
2008-06-11 16:21:56
176.   Eric Stephen
USC v. Ohio St will be at 5pm on 9/13. I'm probably out that day for DT purposes.
2008-06-11 16:22:05
177.   LoneStar7
172 but the bruins will be playing at BYU 12:30 on Sept. 13
2008-06-11 16:22:13
178.   natepurcell
the same Robinson Cano that all Yankee fans think will be Rod Carew?
2008-06-11 16:22:19
179.   blue22
167 - Kent can go with Penny!
2008-06-11 16:22:40
180.   El Lay Dave
173 167 -> 160
2008-06-11 16:25:54
181.   Bob Timmermann
USC vs. Ohio State will be the 2008 Please Save the BCS from Sending an Incredibly Bad Ohio State to the Championship Game Again Bowl.

For the sake of college football fans everywhere, USC needs to win by 35 and set fire to Jim Tressel's sweater vest.

2008-06-11 16:26:25
182.   natepurcell
Why would the Yankees want Penny?
2008-06-11 16:27:31
183.   Bob Timmermann
The Yankees must acquire every member of the 2003 Marlins who beat them in the World Series.

They didn't get Josh Beckett and look what has happened!

2008-06-11 16:28:03
184.   68elcamino427
but Gammons didn't think that would happen.

Because the Red Sox will bid more in order to keep Penny away from the Yankees, right?

2008-06-11 16:29:49
185.   Eric Stephen
I can live with that.
2008-06-11 16:34:22
186.   Jim Hitchcock
Wow, reading the 2 minutes or so of joyous hilarity filled posting around Martin's scoring from 2nd last night was worth the price of admission.
2008-06-11 16:34:22
187.   CanuckDodger
I would be happy to trade Penny and put either Kuo or Park in the rotation. Anybody have any ideas about what you would want for him that you think is a FAIR price, a price that you think would be acceptable to the other team? Frankly, I wouldn't require much in return to make the deal. A sleeper prospect or two might be enough for me, but that's me. I don't see another team willing to pay much more.
2008-06-11 16:36:35
188.   natepurcell

Phil Hughes.

2008-06-11 16:37:18
189.   Jim Hitchcock
186 187 A simultaneous post! I didn't have to refresh to read Canuck's.
2008-06-11 16:38:57
190.   CanuckDodger
188 -- Way too much to give up for Penny. Penny's value is low right now, and we have to acknowledge that.
2008-06-11 16:39:40
191.   natepurcell
Hughes' star has lost his shine. Penny has an affordable contract and is only 30. DO IT NED.
2008-06-11 16:40:20
192.   natepurcell

Then why trade Penny when starting pitching is a premium; especially with his affordable contract next year.

2008-06-11 16:41:13
193.   Neal Pollack
I would take Hughes OR Cano.
2008-06-11 16:41:41
194.   El Lay Dave
187 Isn't Penny's $8.75 option for '09 pretty cheap these days even if he is a fourth starter? What do stretch-drive back of the rotation upgrades go for these days, a decent prospect? And I suppose one must weigh what kind of '09 one expects from Penny, if he will be a type A FA (two picks - sandwich and second round at worst, I think) after '09.
2008-06-11 16:42:50
195.   Jon Weisman
Why trade Penny when his value is at its lowest?
2008-06-11 16:43:01
196.   LAT
Wouldn't a Penny trade end the last vestage of "The Trade"(tm)?
2008-06-11 16:43:21
197.   Daniel Zappala
Is this going to be fast-pitch softball, slow-pitch softball, or pitch-to-your-own-team softball?

Bob, is your base station acting OK now?

Has Torre ever used an Ethier-Kemp-Young outfield? What is it with Pierre?

2008-06-11 16:44:20
198.   CanuckDodger
190 -- We want to trade Penny because he has become medioce when he isn't crap, and I suspect the Dodgers know something that makes them skeptical that he is going to turn it around. Penny has been pitching "sore" recently. So his value really is low and other teams will know that. So if we are serious about moving him, I think we have to give a big discount.
2008-06-11 16:45:09
199.   CanuckDodger
198 - That was a reply to 192, not 190.
2008-06-11 16:45:55
200.   El Lay Dave
197 DY has only 3 OF starts, all in June, in RF, in place of Ethier
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2008-06-11 16:46:46
201.   natepurcell

You trade Penny if you can acquire a player that has the potential to be a permanent piece on the big league team. If we are only going to get fillers for him, you might as well hold onto him.


Billingsley 23
Kershaw 20
Hughes 22

that would be cool.

2008-06-11 16:47:57
202.   sporky
197 But he's a great leadoff hitter!
2008-06-11 16:48:08
203.   CanuckDodger
195 -- Because we just want to get rid of him and let his rotation spot be taken by somebody apt to be better. The upgrade on days when Penny would otherwise be pitching for us is its own reward. What we could get for Penny is just gravy.
2008-06-11 16:49:35
204.   Ken Noe
Given that Penny is the only player Ned publically has criticized by name, I've been looking for such rumors. Plus I bet Torre would love to have Cano again. Throw in Kent and I'll dance and sing. But I thought New York was looking for a set-up man and maybe a first baseman....
2008-06-11 16:50:28
205.   natepurcell

Aren't you being a little too trigger happy with Penny. Yes, he has sucked so far this season but he has shown he is a good pitcher.

2008-06-11 16:50:57
206.   Alex41592
I will say if there was ONE team you want Pierre in the lineup against it is the Padres. He can run wild on them. Plus, Pierre has a great line against lefties this season:


Though his line against righties this season is not good at all:


2008-06-11 16:51:00
207.   sporky
I know both Hughes' and Cano's values are down due to injuries and/or serious slumpage, but could we expect to get either in return for Penny? Seems like a bit much.
2008-06-11 16:51:40
208.   CanuckDodger
201 -- Well, I wouldn't want a "filler" or fillers. Sleeper prospects are guys who have a chance to be permanent fixtures on our team, just not right away. There are prospects out there that I think may be a bit under the radar that I believe in nevertheless.
2008-06-11 16:52:50
209.   natepurcell

So from the yankees, which players do you have in mind?

2008-06-11 16:54:00
210.   DaDoughboy
Do not trade Penny... He is only 30, still has a very heavy ball, and is a recent all-star starter (which I guess really doesn't mean much nowadays). This is exactly the kind of knee-jerk reaction that has been getting Ned in trouble in the first place (pun intended).
2008-06-11 16:54:49
211.   CajunDodger
That would be indeed cool, but I can't imagine a scenario where we get Hughes for Penny. I think Cano would be a better possibility because the perceived value of a second baseman is lower than that of a "proven" pitcher who is cheap and controllable for another year.

That said, I was hoping for a DeWitt/LaRoche solution to the second base delimma.

2008-06-11 16:56:44
212.   El Lay Dave
206 Plus, JP career v. Wolf: 34 PAs, .419 .455 .516 .971.

Name the only other three current Dodgers to face Wolf. ("Current" excludes 60-day DL guys.)

2008-06-11 16:56:49
213.   silverwidow
Penny for Madison Bumgarner. I'd even throw in some young offense (the Giants need it).
2008-06-11 16:56:52
214.   underdog
We do all realize that trading players when their value is at their lowest is the thing that maddens us the most (or one of the things) about Colletti, right? Just checking. How about seeing if he picks it up a bit more (he's looked better his last two starts), seeing if he can pitch closer to how he used to, and THEN trading him for something of value? For once...
2008-06-11 16:56:55
215.   fiddlestick
How does New York trade Hughes for Penny when they wouldn't include Hughes in a deal for Johan Santana?
2008-06-11 16:56:57
216.   CanuckDodger
205 -- Penny WAS a good pitcher. Timing is everything in the talent market. Andruw Jones WAS a good hitter. Dontrelle Willis WAS a good pitcher. Penny is not in good physical shape, and never has been. We got some good use out of him while he was capable, but the point may have been reached at which he is more liability than asset.
2008-06-11 16:58:05
217.   El Lay Dave
212 Whoops, B-R's "current" must exclude 15-day DL guys also since Furcal has faced Wolf in the past.
2008-06-11 17:00:19
218.   Jon Weisman
216 - If there's a good deal, fine. I'm not ready to trade Penny for gravy. If Kuo or whoever deserves to start, then fine - but move Penny to the bullpen rather than give him away.
2008-06-11 17:03:14
219.   CanuckDodger
209 -- From the Yankees, I'd be happy to take a package of Jeff Marquez, Dellin Betances, and either Kevin Whelan or Mark Melancon. That doesn't touch anybody who ranked in the Yankees top six prospects as ranked by BA.
2008-06-11 17:05:09
220.   CajunDodger
It would seem that we could get something decent for Penny. I wonder if they have designs on getting rid of one of their veterans (Abreu, Giambi, Matsui).

I'm trying not to be proactively annoyed at Colletti for something that has not happened.

2008-06-11 17:08:26
221.   Alex41592
Beltran 2 RBI single scoring Reyes and Castillo 2-0 Mets over Webb and the D'Backs bot 4.
2008-06-11 17:09:09
222.   El Lay Dave
If the Dodgers get to the point in a negotiation where they can definitively improve themselves by trading Penny, they'll do it. This I learned by reading Ned Colletti quotes.

Penny has an 80 ERA+ and about a 1.56 WHIP. If he isn't done (his speed is still good), I think there's good odds that he'll rebound to 100 ERA+ by year's end, which his last 18-19 starts ought to be pretty decent, and his option year will be a pretty good value to keep.

2008-06-11 17:09:22
223.   bhsportsguy
Daily Check-In

1. Good for me on the picnic dates. I have no conflicts with the game at John Wooden/Vin Scully Coliseum.

2. Isn't trading Penny right now (instead of in 2006 or 2007 at this time) an example of our GM dealing a player at his lowest value? And isn't that something he has been accused of in the past?

3. I get more work done by just reading these days. :) But I'm still here and a proud DTer.

2008-06-11 17:09:49
224.   DaDoughboy
Hmm. Maybe we can pluck Masterson from Boston..? A la JD Drew/Eric Gagne..
2008-06-11 17:12:23
225.   underdog
214 agrees with 223 's second point, and would like the court to move to add it to public record. ;-)

And with that, I bid you adieu as I head off to watch the A's and to scout the Yankees for us. Go Chad!

2008-06-11 17:15:26
226.   Alex41592
Fielder's choice makes it 3-0 Mets top 5
2008-06-11 17:17:32
227.   Jon Weisman
2008-06-11 17:20:27
228.   CanuckDodger
About "low value." There is low value relative to what the player was like in the past, and low value relative to what you think the player's value will be in the future. Edwin Jackson was traded when I expected him to IMPROVE in future. Trading Penny now may be getting rid of a guy who is on the verge of getting WORSE. I have no problem with trading a guy at low value if his value is going to be even lower in future.
2008-06-11 17:21:23
229.   Jon Weisman
228 - Well, I wanted to give Odalis Perez a lot of rope, so don't listen to me :)
2008-06-11 17:23:09
230.   Zak
228 Just because he has had a bad two months is not reason to believe his value if going to be even lower in the future. Penny, if anything, is showing signs of turning things around. Unless you can get a pretty favorable deal, there is no reason to trade him for nothing. There is more reason to believe that he will turn it around than he won't.
2008-06-11 21:29:40
231.   lurkingdodger
While we demand fewer IP for Chan-ho, they can only sing his praises in Korea:

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