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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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Basket Cases
2004-10-07 21:55
by Jon Weisman

In a series where we knew the Dodgers would be in big trouble if their pitching and offense were missing, who could be prepared for the pitching, offense and defense to disappear.

Cesar Izturis double-clutches on a grounder and allows an infield single.

A double-play grounder scoots past Alex Cora for a single.

Given my dreams of the ballet the Dodgers might put on in the playoffs, even in a losing effort, it's almost devastating that the most reliable middle infield there is could allow these two plays in the same game.

Those plays, along with questionable defense by Jeff Weaver, Shawn Green and Milton Bradley, put the Dodgers in a precarious situation.

Timidity about going to the bullpen put Los Angeles over the cliff.

It's not that Weaver couldn't have gotten out of the bases-loaded, two-out jam in the fifth inning Thursday.

It's that in a must-win situation, already down by a run, if you have a fresher, better option than Weaver - particularly with his spot due up in the top of the sixth inning - you have to take it.

I don't like to second-guess Jim Tracy, but this one seemed obvious to me. He potentially needed only 13 outs to close out the game, most of which could be taken by rested Eric Gagne and Yhency Brazoban. That left Duaner Sanchez, Wilson Alvarez and Giovanni Carrara, all fresh, to go after St. Louis catcher Mike Matheny.

Heck, why not bring in Gagne right then. Did you need a bigger moment?

With the last off day of the series coming Friday, the Dodgers needed to take advantage of their last chance to be fully aggressive with the best of their bullpen. And they missed it.

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