Baseball Toaster Dodger Thoughts
Jon Weisman's outlet
for dealing psychologically
with the Los Angeles Dodgers
and baseball.
Frozen Toast
Google Search
Dodger Thoughts

02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

09  08  07 
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

Mueller Heads Down Valentin Path
2006-06-08 13:00
by Jon Weisman

Taking a break from the woes of Eric Gagne for a moment ...

Though Dodger third baseman Bill Mueller got off to a better start in April than last year's free agent signee at the position, Jose Valentin, it looks as if Mueller is going to end up having a similar season. Like Valentin, Mueller was sidelined early on by a knee injury, and his recovery is not going well.

"Mueller's knee is not responding well to May 15 surgery," Ken Gurnick of said, "and he will seek a second opinion from Vail orthopedic surgeon Dr. William Steadman. Mueller has had three operations on the right knee."

Valentin, meanwhile, is having a little bit of a rebound at age 36, playing second base for the New York Mets. It's nothing spectacular, but presumably it's what former Dodger general manager Paul DePodesta had in mind when he signed Valentin to be the 2005 stopgap at third.

Valentin, 2005: 184 PA, .598 OPS, .232 EQA, -6.9 VORP, $3,500,000
Mueller, 2006: 126 PA, .759 OPS, .266 EQA, 1.6 VORP, $4,250,000 (2006), $5,250,000 (2007-08)
Valentin, 2006: 103 PA, .838 OPS, .273 EQA, 6.4 VORP, $912,500

I never got comfortable with the Valentin signing, whereas I saw some potential (to go with some health risk) in picking up Mueller when it happened. Furthermore, Mueller still has a chance to pull things together by the end of the year (though I don't think anyone knows when we'll see him next), and Valentin still has plenty of time to let things fall apart.

But in the end, Mueller's principal value to the Dodgers might just be what he did for them just for the season's opening couple of weeks, and maybe, what he might provide on the trade market. Maybe he'll contribute in the stretch run of 2006. Maybe he'll follow Valentin into a resurgence - in Los Angeles even, if for some reason Willy Aybar, Joel Guzman or Andy LaRoche don't prevent it.

Otherwise, on-the-field memories of Mueller in a Dodger uniform might be as few as those of Valentin.

Comments (274)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-06-08 13:15:38
1.   D4P
I know this has been mentioned before, and there's probably no way for us to tell for sure, but are Dodger doctors incompetent? I don't pay attention to other teams' doctors and their success rates, so I don't know how the Dodgers compare. But it sure seems as if "a lot" of their diagnoses, procedures, etc. don't turn out so well.
2006-06-08 13:19:01
2.   Sushirabbit
Valentin's 2005 line was clearly the abberation, mainly from the injury, from his career.. so I don't think it's all that surprising to see him do well this year. Anymore than it is to see Nomar (for example). Although clearly Nomar is at a different level. Everything is a gamble and injuries are really tough to predict. You can argue that Mueller's knee was predictable just as Kent's left wrist, but like Kent it seems worth the gamble (to me) that he will stay healty given the offensive potential.
2006-06-08 13:20:52
3.   Jon Weisman
That's been a big question for a while now. I don't know that we can answer it. It certainly appears, at a minimum, they aren't super-competent.

I don't think it's that unusual for injuries to heal in dissappointing fashion, despite the best medical care. My father has been plagued with nerve problems in his back for a long time now, and I don't think it's the doctors' fault.

I also think (and have said this before) that the Dodgers always tend to put as positive spin as they can on injuries when they happen, trying to forestall panic but leading often to disappointment.

That would be my defense of the team medical staff. Beyond that, I have the very same questions as you.

2006-06-08 13:21:10
4.   Improbable88
As far as memories are concerned, those of Valentin already stand out more than Mueller though they are a year older.

Not only did Valentin have a couple of big home runs in the 12-2 start, including a huge, pinch-hit homer in Arizona in the 9th, but we actually saw him blow-out his knee sliding into home(?) at the Ravine.

Mueller was pretty solid, but had no defining moment. We kinda just heard about his knee, saw him go out, but never saw the POP (both the bat and the knee) like with Valentin during the infamous, wonderful 12 and 2.

2006-06-08 13:25:16
5.   Improbable88
And we haven't even broached the porn-star-stache!
2006-06-08 13:27:21
6.   Sushirabbit
And back problems are really NOT fun.

Is there any way that clubs insure against player injuries? I've never really thought about it, but if there is, you would think that at some point the Insurer would notice that there was an abberation with certain teams and their injury rates. Somebody email Lloyds of London.

2006-06-08 13:29:36
7.   Jacob L
All things being equal, I'd prefer to have Bill Mueller. I think he'd help the team, but its easy to see a bright side here, in that it eases the roster logjam, somewhat. No need for Aybar to go back down. A potential place for Izturis to play when/if he ever comes back.

I was never crazy about the second year of Mueller, and less crazy about it now. If you're not ready to hand the position over to the kids in '07 when will you be? Of course, compared to the second year of Tomko, 2 years of Mueller looks pretty brilliant.

2006-06-08 13:31:22
8.   Jacob L
6 I had thought that injury insurance was pretty common-place, though the premiums are not as attractive as they once were. Largely, this is due the Dodgers and the Kevin Brown/Darren Dreifort sagas.
2006-06-08 13:34:47
9.   bluetahoe
With the emergence of Aybie the Mueller injury doesn't hurt so bad if at all. We need another solid starter in the worst way.
I suggest Midas and McCourt take the Depo approach with Odalis. Just pay him to go away. Swallow some pride and swallow some money. It's in the best interest of the organization and the best interest of the wins column. I advocate the Dodgers make a run at Jamie Moyer.
2006-06-08 13:35:34
10.   Jon Weisman
I think of Mueller providing good offense (and defense) while Lofton and Garciappara were on the DL and before the rookies had had an impact. He was pretty noticeable those first two weeks, before the knee started trembling and the decline began.
2006-06-08 13:35:35
11.   FirstMohican
4 - I'm pretty sure Valentine played the next inning as well. What a gamer to have played on 3 torn ligaments!
2006-06-08 13:40:03
12.   FirstMohican
9 - Not that I'd be TOTALLY against Moyer, but there've got to be better solutions than that... like, oh, I don't know, Billingsley?

11 - Valentin, rather.

2006-06-08 13:40:48
13.   Sushirabbit
My #2 is really just saying the same thing Jon said while pointing out that to take just 2005 line is a bit misleading when it came to expectations for 2005. I certainly like the Mueller signing better, too.

I plead guilty to the hope that Tomko's 2-half last year actually meant something. But I'm not sure that's as excusable as gambling on Mueller.

2006-06-08 13:41:36
14.   natepurcell
I suggest Midas and McCourt take the Depo approach with Odalis.

Now, when I say Midas, I am joking around. When you say Midas, I think you are actually being serious.

2006-06-08 13:44:55
15.   bigcpa
14 Yeah makes you wonder why Midas' touch only worked on Mueller for 3 weeks. It appears Midas' best moves so far have all involved calling Vegas.
2006-06-08 13:45:38
16.   Jeff Iannucci
Mueller and Valentin are both old men (over 35, which by the way includes me) and old men break down. If there is an orgizational blame it would be in signing them at all and hoping they would stay healthy.

I know that doesn't explain Gagne, Dreifort, et al, but in the instance of these two guys it's safe to say older players are usually a crap shoot. One I might add in which you usually get less shooting and more...well, not shooting.

2006-06-08 13:45:53
17.   bluetahoe
Every move Ned has made hasn't turned to gold, but so many of them have. I still like to refer to him as Midas even though he's not batting 1.000.
2006-06-08 13:47:06
18.   Jacob L
At the time, don't forget, everybody looked at the Valentin signing through the prism of "this is the guy Depo found to replace Beltre (04 version)". I think even those of us that were Depo backers, and knew he intended to make up the production elsewhere, found it a little hard to get behind. For those that were more in the Tracy/Plaschke camp, it was a crackpipe signing, plain and simple.

The fact that, post 04, Valentin has been better than Beltre, even with the injury, is a mere awkward fact.

2006-06-08 13:49:21
19.   Bob Timmermann
Jamie Moyer? The 43-year old Jamie Moyer?

The one who was a teammate of Ron Cey and Davey Lopes? I guess he can be a link to the great Dodgers teams of the 1970s!

One of Moyer's teammates, Ed Lynch, has already been hired AND fired as a GM.

He also played with Leon Durham, Chris Speier, Dennis Eckersley, Dick Ruthven, Ron Davis, and Gary Matthews SENIOR.

2006-06-08 13:49:59
20.   natepurcell

of all his moves, how many have been gold so far? I can only think of 3 right now- saito, ethier, and nomar. Maybe sele, but i'm expecting sele to come crashing down pretty soon.

2006-06-08 13:50:30
21.   Kayaker7
18 Sadly, putting a BP screen at the plate would be better than Beltre. Beltre's collapse has been so outrageously dramatic that I'm almost willing to listen to the apologists who say that he would be much better if he stayed in LA.
2006-06-08 13:50:36
22.   Jacob L
He's also a link to the great Notre Dame teams of the 70s, though I'm not sure what that's worth here.
2006-06-08 13:53:09
23.   Kayaker7
19 Plus...he's even older than Bob:

Just trying to plug your blog, Bob.

2006-06-08 13:55:49
24.   bhsportsguy
1 When one of your doctors pioneered the surgery that has saved countless careers, its pretty rough to call them incompetent.

Team medical reports always have to viewed with a bit a skeptism because of competition issues.

For instance for years, the NBA had this kind of DL that was often used as just a rest period, e.g. Shaq's vacation. Last year, the NBA adopted the policy to allow teams to declare players active or inactive for even just for one game.

The NFL has a rule that require teams to put out an injury list teh Thursday before the game but teams are now being less and less upfront about them. Last year the New England coach listed 15 players as probable (75% that they would play) but that list included 2 players who did not even travel with the team.

I think the one thing that could change injury reporting is how the insurance policies that teams get on long term contracts have the term injury defined, I know there is a dispute with the Bagwell and recently Paul Shuey policy where the carriers are questioning how injured the players really were.

This response doesn't really address whether or not it was a good risk to sign a player or not, there are numerous examples of players who never had injury concerns before being signed and then had problems afterward and I know there were some concerns about potential signees like Vlad Guerrero who may have had some blips but otherwise have been very productive.

Anyways thats my two cents.

2006-06-08 13:57:24
25.   Bob Timmermann
I have a blog?
2006-06-08 13:57:28
26.   bluetahoe
Gold - Dumping Bradley. Dumping Antonio Perez. Dumping Hee Seop Choi. Nomar. Sele. Saito. Beimel. Martinez. Lofton. Furcal. Calling up the right players in Aybar, Ethier, Kemp, Martin. No Scott Erickson or Rule 5 players or guys you've never heard of like Steve Schmoll making the roster.

Silver - Baez. Tomko.

2006-06-08 13:57:43
27.   Jacob L
21 It is sad. I didn't think he'd maintain his 2004 level, but I didn't think he'd stink, either. I'll admit that for awhile I rooted against him, just to so that Depo would be right, but I've stopped.

I'm not sure he needed to stay in L.A. so much as he needs Jeff Gillooly to whack him in the ankle every spring.

2006-06-08 13:59:04
28.   Disabled List
Just trying to plug your blog, Bob.

This is a PG website. We'll have none of that language here, mister.

2006-06-08 13:59:54
29.   Kayaker7
25 Senility.

27 Yeah, maybe we need to send some bottled smog up to Seattle.

2006-06-08 14:00:28
30.   Kayaker7
28 LOL...
2006-06-08 14:00:40
31.   FirstMohican
20 - Sele's already a good move IMO (I was 100% against it before). 6/6 quality starts / games started. When he does suck, he'll still have put in those first six games.
2006-06-08 14:02:54
32.   FirstMohican
God forbid we have guys on the roster who we've never heard of.
2006-06-08 14:06:00
33.   Marty
Whenever I see Midas mentioned I still think mufflers first. He'll always be Flanders to me.
2006-06-08 14:07:17
34.   Jon Weisman
I'm find with some of those gold medals Bluetahoe, but for example, a gold for Furcal would indicate a very, very forgiving scale. If DePo is going to be evaluated on the same scale, fine. (I had no intention of making this a DePo vs. Colleti thread, though.)

I think on the fame scale, Joe Beimel vs. Steve Schmoll is a tossup.

What's funny about the rotation is that Ned added three pitchers: Tomko, Seo and Sele. Sele has been the best, while Tomko and Seo are about 50-50 as to whether they'll outperform D.J. Houlton.

2006-06-08 14:08:29
35.   regfairfield
26 Do you remember what Izturis was hitting at this time last year?
2006-06-08 14:08:33
36.   Jon Weisman
34 - fine, not "find"
2006-06-08 14:09:31
37.   Sam DC
The Nationals blogs routinely circle around to speculation about whether the medical staff is inept.

Free baseball in SD. Brady Clark tied it w/a 2 out bottom ninth single.

2006-06-08 14:09:45
38.   Sam DC
er, in Milw. against SD.
2006-06-08 14:12:08
39.   Bob Timmermann
Padre MVP Rob Bowen has gotten into the game in Milwaukee as a pinch runner.
2006-06-08 14:12:50
40.   Jon Weisman
39 - He has? Game over.
2006-06-08 14:13:53
41.   Bob Timmermann
Bowen is at second with one out and Adrian Gonzalez up.
2006-06-08 14:16:15
42.   DougS
I just hope Mueller sticks around long enough for me to find why his name is pronounced "Mill-er" instead of "Mewl-er." :-)
2006-06-08 14:16:18
43.   Bob Timmermann
But Gonzalez hits into a DP to end the threat.
2006-06-08 14:18:12
44.   Kayaker7
42 You missed Bob's post.
2006-06-08 14:18:31
45.   Bob Timmermann
2006-06-08 14:18:39
46.   Dark Horse
Setting aside all questions of medal-giving, the problem remains: we need pitching. Not just Billingsley, as in an ideal world we'll be rid of Perez altogether, will relegate Seo to long-relief and emergency fill-ins, and will be prepared to compensate for Sele's inevitable comedown. Tomko's...inconsistency, let's call it, we'll just have to live with.

Where's it going to come from? Where should it come from? What makes me most nervous now is that Colletti's trades are the worst moves he's made. Yet the fact remains, Penny and Lowe are the only starters we might expect better-than-adequate performance from over the course of the season. ("Expect" may be too strong. Hope for.) Which means even treading water--as we have been for the last week or so--could be too much to hope for. So...what're we gonna do about it?

2006-06-08 14:20:38
47.   dianagramr
The Dodger medical staff can't be any worse than the Mariners. I mean, how many pitchers have the Ms gone through in the last decade? It CAN'T be just bad drafting and overuse in the minors can it?

Speaking of the Ms, one of their top draft picks from this week sprained his elbow PICKING UP THE PHONE to receive the news that he had been drafted.

(I couldn't make that up if I tried)

2006-06-08 14:20:59
48.   Bob Timmermann
And Bill Hall sends the Milwaukeeans home happy with a homer in the bottom of the tenth.
2006-06-08 14:21:38
49.   Bob Timmermann
I'd read that story more carefully.
2006-06-08 14:24:42
50.   Jon Weisman
47 - I posted that yesterday. You might not have been able to make it up, but Art Thiel could.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-06-08 14:25:02
51.   Inside Baseball
Tonight I participating in a focus group for season ticket holders about the Dodger Think Blue Rewards Program (which I've notived is now a sponsor of the Toaster). I haven't gotten much from them about what the focus group's focus is but I'm guessing it's purpose is to seek out thoughts on how to attract more people to use the program and what would be desirable rewards. I've thought of a couple which I'll share but was wondering if anyone had other ideas that would be cool that go beyond the typical signed ball/jersey or seat upgrades.

The two ideas that came to mind for me as cool rewards would be able to stand behind the cage while the Dodgers take batting practice. I know they already have taking batting practice yourself as a reward but I assume that's not with players around. I think it would be cool to watch actual Dodgers hit (maybe not quite as cool if you're watching the group with Ramon Martinez).

The second idea was being able to sit silently in the back of Vin's booth and just listen to him call a couple of innings, be able to meet him quickly between innings, etc.

Anyone else have an idea for a reward they'd like to see? I'm happy to pass them along if I'm right about what the purpose of the group is. Of course, I'll make sure to sing the praises of Logan White and argue for the 5 rookie lineup at least once before Kent comes back no matter what the topic. :)

2006-06-08 14:25:53
52.   Inside Baseball
I'm - way to start off a post right.
2006-06-08 14:26:50
53.   Marty
I liked this from the Capital Punishment blog:

With Frank Robinson, Bob Boone, and Davey Lopes, all former managers, in the fold, Davey Johnson increases the number of successful major league managers on the team to 1

2006-06-08 14:30:29
54.   Bob Timmermann
I've been told not to make fun of Frank Robinson anymore.
2006-06-08 14:32:00
55.   Jacob L
53 I'd still say zero, but, of course, I'm just going by the Dodger part of his career. In any case they've got more Daveys than good maanagers.
2006-06-08 14:32:10
56.   Steve
54 -- If that's wrong, you don't want to be right.

Meanwhile, Deadspin has news. Depressing news.

2006-06-08 14:32:14
57.   Marty
Taking batting practice may be too much of an insurance risk. I like the idea of sitting in the booth with Vin. I personally know that is a fun thing to do. You could even expand it so that a Spanish-speaking fan could sit in the booth with Jaime Jarin.

I'd even go so far as to let someone TAKE OVER for Monday in the booth as an award.

2006-06-08 14:34:02
58.   Jacob L
54 Who in the heck told you that! Your Frank scorn is one of the best features of this here toaster!
2006-06-08 14:34:30
59.   D4P
When one of your doctors pioneered the surgery that has saved countless careers, its pretty rough to call them incompetent.

But even pioneers get old and lose their touch.

2006-06-08 14:35:53
60.   Jacob L
57 You mean letting a total amateur do take over for Rick Monday on the broadcast?!? What if they never tell us the score?
2006-06-08 14:36:53
61.   Bob Timmermann
I was told by someone here that I am defaming a decent man in Frank Robinson.

Maybe Thomas Boswell visits the site.

2006-06-08 14:39:18
62.   UncleLarry
I think Frank's a decent enough manager. I don't think he ever had a good enough team to manage. His teams offense always gets better when he takes over. Sure he bunts to much, but so what! It isn't like he's Gene Mauch!
2006-06-08 14:40:24
63.   bigcpa
51 They should offer single-game seat upgrades. I'd participate if I could sit in the dugout seats. So many of those seats go unused for the midweek games anyway.
2006-06-08 14:41:01
64.   Humma Kavula
56 I would have been very happy not knowing that.
2006-06-08 14:42:04
65.   JoeyP
No Scott Erickson or Rule 5 players or guys you've never heard of like Steve Schmoll making the roster.

What are Tim Hamulack, Lance Carter, and Joe Beimel then? I had never heard of any of those guys. Two of them have been horrible. Erickson made 8 starts. Get over it. Dessens/Houlton have been better #5 starters than Seo has been.

That fact that you put Releasing Choi as a "Gold" move makes me think you're just here to troll. But once again you got a few bites.

2006-06-08 14:42:28
66.   regfairfield
61 Isn't the correct answer to that accusation "well, duh"? Not that I'd actually expect you to say that.

62 Frank doesn't understand that outs are valuable and lead the league in sacrifice attempts and intentional walks last year. In terms of game strategy, I'd say he's the worst manager in baseball.

2006-06-08 14:47:45
67.   natepurcell
What are Tim Hamulack, Lance Carter, and Joe Beimel then? I had never heard of any of those guys.

You've never heard of all star Lance Carter!??!?!

2006-06-08 14:48:35
68.   dsfan
On Sele:

Sure, he's living on borrowed time. But he's more than returned full value on the $500,000. Ideally, the Dodgers would have sufficient pitching depth to ask less of him this summer.

On the pitching:

One of these days, the Dodgers need to get back to producing their own pitchers. When's the last homegrown starter who gave them a pretty good season? Billingsley's promising, more so if he could whittle those walks down a bit. One of the great things Sele has done is buy time for Billingsley. Ideally, the Dodgers keep Bills fresh. Maybe skip him a start, or, like Depo advocated to give starters a breather, use him for 1-3 innings of relief on 2-3 of his start days.

Prediction: Gagne is DL'd for good by July, Tomko goes to the bullpen, Bills goes to rotation. And then a trade for another pitcher or two.

2006-06-08 14:49:14
69.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
When one of your doctors pioneered the surgery that has saved countless careers, its pretty rough to call them incompetent.
Don't look at Jobe. Instead, it's well past time to ask pointed questions of Stan Johnston.
2006-06-08 14:49:32
70.   JoeyP
56. What was depressing about Deadspin? That Grimsley linked Albert Pujols personal trainer to his network of steroid users?

At this point, it is what it is. The fact HGH isnt even tested for makes it seem like its still possible to do steroids and not get caught. Olney gave a long diatribe on ESPNNews about this. I'd say most everyone is on some type of supplement, and whether they are classifed as 'perform enhancing' just depends on where you draw the line.

Did you know HGH actually improves eye site? In fact, they havent linked any negative side effects associated with HGH. Its on the banned substances list, but isnt tested for. Draw your own conclusions.

2006-06-08 14:49:43
71.   ToyCannon
While I view the Dodger medical staff with disdain you can't lay Mueller at their feet. Mueller was a risk going in because of his knee history but I liked the risk and until his knee went south he gave exactly what I would have expected. At this point unless Aybar craters he looks like Mueller did when he was his age without the great defense. I'm much more impressed with Aybar then any other rookie because his pedigree did not suggest such competence.

Valentin had a terrible April which hides the fact how hot he really has been since May started. Of course he has looked really bad at 2nd base but I'm only judging that on the Dodger series since I don't watch the Mets on a normal basis. A long time ago I advocated signing Valentin as a FA to replace the punchless Cora and much to my surprise we signed him but to replace Beltre which didn't set well with me. I knew Beltre was not 2004 but I'm shocked at how bad he's become. If Depo gets credit for nothing else he should get credit for not destroying the franchise by caving into the Boras demands and signing Beltre.

2006-06-08 14:51:46
72.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
68 - If Bills enters the rotation, I forsee it would be at the expense of the Odalis/Seo tandem, not Tomko.
2006-06-08 14:52:29
73.   Jon Weisman
70 -
2006-06-08 14:52:37
74.   JoeyP
I heard on ESPN today that Gagne's problem is swelling but also a nerve problem in his elbow. Nerve problems, isnt that what Penny had but it was further down into his forearm? Nevertheless a nerve problem isnt something that someone can just fix. Its hard telling what will happen with Gagne. But if his elbow swells up after every appearance, I think they will shut him down. Gagne has no incentive to pitch this year bc he does have that mutual option he can exercise.
2006-06-08 14:52:59
75.   Bob Timmermann
Well, there was the problem of some people receiving HGH in the 1970s (because they were considered to be "too short") and ending up with Creutzfeld-Jacob Disease.

You really don't want to get that.

2006-06-08 14:53:58
76.   bearlurker
Insurance is pretty common. However, I believe that insurers have stopped insuring beyond 3 or 4 years on a contract (or maybe that's just for pitchers) and have gotten pretty picky about preexisting conditions.
2006-06-08 15:02:42
77.   Disabled List
Dunno if this has been posted yet (and if it has, I apologize), but Bill Simmons has a great piece up on the incongruity of a Boston fan seeing Pedro, Nomar, Lowe, and Little in a NL game on 6/6/06.

It's a great read for Dodger fans, but Simmons isn't as keen an observer of Los Angeles as he thinks he is. He refers to Dodger Stadium as being on the outskirts of the city (huh?), refers to watching the sunset beyond the centerfield (?) scoreboard, and laughs when Grady belatedly pulls "Braxton" from the game.

I know Jonathan was pitching like Toni that night, but still...

2006-06-08 15:06:27
78.   Inside Baseball
57(lol) and 63--I'll pass those along, thanks.
2006-06-08 15:07:05
79.   Bob Timmermann
Another look at HGH:
2006-06-08 15:08:55
80.   Screwgie

Good post, but I think Depo did infact sign Valentin to replace Cora. Kent was signed to take Beltre's place (although one could agrue for Drew as a Beltre replacement with Kent bumping Green). Anyhow, the positions on the field may have been reversed but not the bats.

2006-06-08 15:13:58
81.   ToyCannon
With all the worry about our starting pitching depth maybe now would be a good time to let Kuo return to his roots. Seo has been this seasons biggest disappointment for me. Expected alot but Regfairfield warned me that my expectations were to high.
2006-06-08 15:14:31
82.   ToyCannon
2006-06-08 15:14:47
83.   regfairfield
81 I am kind of a killjoy like that. However, I didn't think he'd be this bad.
2006-06-08 15:19:21
84.   JoeyP
79. Interesting article. Only 22 out of 8,000 injected with HGH developed that human form of "mad cow" disease. But it did say it can lie dormant for up to 30yrs in someone.

With that still slim chance of side effects, I doubt they'd serve as enough of a deterrent to stop pro athletes from using.

2006-06-08 15:21:37
85.   overkill94
74 Do you seriuosly think the Dodgers would pick up their end of the mutual option if Gagne ends the season on the DL? I believe you're thinking of a player option.
2006-06-08 15:25:42
86.   Disabled List
Colletti's only real blockbuster success so far is Nomar, and that will last only as long as Nomar does. And it looks like we definitely got the best of the Ethier trade so far, but time will tell on that one. Lofton and Sele have been better than expected, but the dreaded R-word (regression) will make it's presence felt sooner or later.

The jury is still out on all the rest of his moves. The Seo trade looks like a total bummer for us, and the Baez-Carter trade will either turn out to be a huge loss or a gave-up-nothing-received-nothing stumble, hardly optimal outcomes.

All that aside, some of the biggest factors for the Dodgers' >.500 record this year is rebound performances from Penny, Lowe, and Drew, and the production of the rookies that have been called up, all of which Ned had little or nothing to do with.

2006-06-08 15:25:49
87.   Eric Enders
85 "Do you seriuosly think the Dodgers would pick up their end of the mutual option if Gagne ends the season on the DL?"

Of course they will. Shredded arm or no shredded arm, he's still by far the most popular player on the team.

2006-06-08 15:29:00
88.   overkill94
Even the most diehard Gagne fan would have trouble giving him $12 million if his health is still in question I would think.
2006-06-08 15:29:19
89.   Eric L
84 I think you are right..

Athletes didn't (or don't) seem to mind that steroids might make them impotent (supposedly only while is on the juice).

2006-06-08 15:29:23
90.   JoeyP
I dont think the Dodgers will ever buy out Gagne. The politics, media wont allow it.
2006-06-08 15:29:26
91.   dsfan

I believe Aybar's pedigree in fact projected him as what we're mostly seeing -- Muellerlike offense, but not the D of the young Mueller D.
I just think many people evaulated Aybar's offense a bit severely, dinged him a bit too hard for the lows slugs at Vegas and underappreciated his approach and the breadth of his skill set. Factoring in age and leage, he showed pretty good approach from age 18 through his strong one month callup at 22. The power was weak last year, but there were respectable signs of it earlier.

Will(y) Aybar crater? Wouldn' be stunning. Teams finally are attacking him with the hard stuff, throwing more strikes. Walks have been tougher to come by, putting a lot of pressure on him to find holes.

His slowdown in recent weeks was probably inevitable. It's encouraging that he's still mixing in some hits. It'll be interesting to see how he adjusts. I was pleased that Little sat him against Glavine. Willy hasn't been comfortable against lefties. Nice bit of managing by Little, and I think a mental breather was probably in order.
The defensive shuttling probably should be taken into account. He's not a natural 2B yet held his own there with Kent out.

2006-06-08 15:29:57
92.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
all of which Ned had little or nothing to do with.
Not necessarily. Ned could've traded away some kids for Proven Veterans®, but he didn't.
Sometimes, the best moves are the ones you don't make.
2006-06-08 15:32:58
93.   regfairfield
92 I really love that expectations for front office personnel are so low that they get credit for not directly sabotaging the team. Same goes for managers.
2006-06-08 15:35:45
94.   Marty
Only 22 out of 8,000 injected with HGH developed that human form of "mad cow" disease.

ONLY 22? That's a very high number (3 in 1000) for something that serious. Those are odds I don't think anyone would knowingly take. I'd like to think that they are still not deriving HGH from cadavers, but who knows?

2006-06-08 15:37:07
95.   Bob Timmermann

I don't think the players would care about the after-effects. I just wanted to point out what sort of side effects there could be. I've been told that the HGH that is used now is much better, but I'd rather just stick with what nature gave me.

Apparently, my pituarity gland was chockful of HGH goodness!

2006-06-08 15:39:43
96.   Daniel Zappala
94 HGH can be made synthetically now.
2006-06-08 15:43:17
97.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
93 - So, the only winning GMs who should be credited are the GMs who made Bold Moves? Otherwise, the GM didn't do anything and, therefore, deserves no credit?
These questions aren't about Colletti, per se, but an exploration into your view on who deserves praise for doing exactly what.
2006-06-08 15:46:53
98.   regfairfield
97 I'm not saying I disagree with the idea, I just can't think of many other professions where you deserve credit for not being a buffon.

In the case of not trading prospects, credit should go to the person who got the prospects in the first place.

2006-06-08 15:48:24
99.   Bob Timmermann
People always take notice of the person who makes the big moves. I think that's true in any job. They might not even be the best person at the job. They're just the most visible.

No one ever gets too excited about someone who justs produces consistently, but unspectatularly. It's not interesting.

2006-06-08 15:51:18
100.   Bob Timmermann
I just can't think of many other professions where you deserve credit for not being a buffon.

Only if you go to a place where they teach creationism.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-06-08 15:51:50
101.   Eric L
98 I think the first step in effective management is not to be a knucklehead. Far too many folks take management positions and try to micromanage and fix what isn't broken.

I do agree that Logan White should get credit for getting the prospects, but if a crappy GM trades them away for crappy talent, it doesn't matter.

2006-06-08 15:52:36
102.   bigcpa
Well while we're discussing non-moves, put one in Colletti's plus column for pursuing Brian Giles and nearly getting it done. This shows he identified LF as a big hole and targeted the best available FA OF to fill it.
2006-06-08 15:52:38
103.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
98 -
In the case of not trading prospects, credit should go to the person who got the prospects in the first place.
Agreed, and I hope my first statement didn't come across as an attempt to shift the credt for the kids from Logan White to Ned. White found them, and Ned didn't give them away. While both had roles in the rookies' successes, I don't think anyone would say the credit should be shared equally.

I just can't think of many other professions where you deserve credit for not being a buffoon.
Most, if not all, work situations would be far improved through the successful avoidance of buffoonery.

2006-06-08 15:54:18
104.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
Wow, great minds think alike.
We should collaborate on a workplace self-help book: "Who Moved My Prospects?"
2006-06-08 15:56:19
105.   Bob Timmermann
My joke in 100 was really, really, really subtle.

Off to Google people!

2006-06-08 15:59:40
106.   Jacob L
105 - Going to the old Leclerc well, there, huh? Typical.
2006-06-08 16:04:44
107.   Bob Timmermann
And his wikipedia entry has this attached to it:
For the Italian soccer goalkeeper, see Gianluigi Buffon
2006-06-08 16:07:01
108.   jasonungar05
I think we are better this year because of Grady over Tracy..not Ned over Depo.

For example Aybar would not hit safely in 24 out of 27 games cause it would have taken him 68 games to play in 27. Ramon Martinez would be leading off and Alomar would have triple the amount of starts as he does now, many of them at first base.

2006-06-08 16:07:11
109.   Jacob L
Also, not to be confused with George (Frenchy) LeClair who played for Pittsburgh in 1914-15.

2006-06-08 16:09:31
110.   Jon Weisman
90 - Fernando was released. Garvey was let go without much of a second thought. Gibson was traded rather unceremoniously ... I could go on.
2006-06-08 16:09:47
111.   Uncle Miltie
I was told by someone here that I am defaming a decent man in Frank Robinson.
Probably me :)

I don't think Frank Robinson is one of the worst managers. Certainly, Buddy Bell, Mike Hargrove, Jim Tracy, Felipe Alou (a Tracy clone) and Dusty Baker are worse. I'm sure there are a few others. Frank Robinson is a mediocre manager, but he also has mediocre talent and the worst GM in baseball running the team.

2006-06-08 16:13:20
112.   Eric L
110 2004 Division series hero Jose Lima wasn't offered a contract :)
2006-06-08 16:17:07
113.   dsfan

And who hired Grady?

2006-06-08 16:22:22
114.   Uncle Miltie
Ugh..I feel dirty for leaving off Clint Hurdle. The man loves to play smallball in Coors field.
2006-06-08 16:23:40
115.   dsfan
On the subject of trading prospects

Has to be judged case by case.

I was all for trading EJ, but the Dodgers waited too long. He'd been shopped well before Ned dealt him, but interest was low.

The Marlins won the 2003 WS in no small part because they traded prospects during the season. It took steel gonads to do it, because the odds were against even getting to the playoffs. But they ended up looking very smart for doing it.

You can leverage a lot of value out of trading a prospect who isn't as good as his externally perceived valued. That's why the Red Sox were so happy to have de facto PR man Gammons tout their prospects for all those years. The great Tony Armas Jrs of the world helped them get Pedro Martinez, et al.

The team that trades its prospect has the built in advantage of knowing him better than other clubs. Or at least that's how it should work.

It's incredibly early but appears the Dodgers were right in their evaulations of Martin and Kemp, so that's an encouraging start for Colletti. If a franchise can't evaulate its own kids, it's in big trouble.

2006-06-08 16:28:29
116.   DougS
44 45 Ah! Bob, you're so prolific I can't keep up with you.

Makes sense, though. Heck, I guess my family always pronounced our last name a little differently than they do it in the old country, too.

2006-06-08 16:47:25
117.   FirstMohican
"I was all for trading EJ, but the Dodgers waited too long. He'd been shopped well before Ned dealt him, but interest was low."

I remember reading that Jackson might've been the reason the Dodgers didn't get Randy Johnson (well, and he didn't want to be a Dodger). Wonder if DePo regrets that one, if it's true. Would've been nice to have RJ (v2004) start twice against the Cards and not OP.

2006-06-08 16:52:07
118.   Greg S
Hi All. Just wanted to pass along a quick story. Got to sit in the dugout boxes last night and about an hour before the game, Russel Martin, Sr. was sitting there by himself. So I went up and introduced myself and talked with him for quite a while. He is a REALLY nice guy and of course very excited for his son. After reading the Plaschke story, I thought he might be a bit strange but he was quite articulate and said all the things a good Dad would say. Mostly excited but also concearned about his son being famous (quickly) in a place like L.A. Anyway, it was just a nice story (both in the Times and Vinny talking about it) and I can confirm first hand that he is enjoying every minute of it.
2006-06-08 16:52:08
119.   Greg S
Hi All. Just wanted to pass along a quick story. Got to sit in the dugout boxes last night and about an hour before the game, Russel Martin, Sr. was sitting there by himself. So I went up and introduced myself and talked with him for quite a while. He is a REALLY nice guy and of course very excited for his son. After reading the Plaschke story, I thought he might be a bit strange but he was quite articulate and said all the things a good Dad would say. Mostly excited but also concearned about his son being famous (quickly) in a place like L.A. Anyway, it was just a nice story (both in the Times and Vinny talking about it) and I can confirm first hand that he is enjoying every minute of it.
2006-06-08 16:52:52
120.   Greg S
Sorry. Don't know how that happened!
2006-06-08 16:54:14
121.   jasonungar05

I guess a better way to say the same thing is that this year it seems our GM and Manager are on the same page and working together.

2006-06-08 16:56:22
122.   D4P

No Kenny Lofton update...?

2006-06-08 16:57:30
123.   FirstMohican
113 - Not to take anything away from Grady (or from Colletti for hiring him), but I think the Dodgers are benifiting more from not having Tracy than they are for having Grady replace him.
2006-06-08 16:57:40
124.   Greg S
122- He's still old, still good.
2006-06-08 16:57:45
125.   Bob Timmermann
118 119

It was a nice story and worth hearing twice. Nicer than hearing any of us talk about Odalis Perez twice.

2006-06-08 17:00:06
126.   Jon Weisman
125 - I was going to say the same thing - it was worth reading the second time.
2006-06-08 17:04:25
127.   Greg S
125-126 Thanks Bob and Jon. I talked about Odalis Perez more than twice last night. But I didn't say anything very nice.
2006-06-08 17:05:32
128.   Steve
Russ sr will like cooperstown too.
2006-06-08 17:05:36
129.   Marty
127 How were the seats?
2006-06-08 17:07:16
130.   D4P
I talked about Odalis Perez more than twice last night. But I didn't say anything very nice.

Did you perchance utter the words "fat tub of goo"...?

2006-06-08 17:09:36
131.   Steve
The Dominican terry Forster
2006-06-08 17:12:08
132.   Bob Timmermann
To clarify something earlier, I do not have animus toward Frank Robinson because I think he is a bad manager. I have animus toward him because I don't like him personally.

It's not business. It's personal.

2006-06-08 17:15:26
133.   Icaros
OMG! Albert Pujols's PT is a drug dealer too?


2006-06-08 17:16:20
134.   Bob Timmermann
Thank you for not lapsing into a complete parody of "Casablanca" there.
2006-06-08 17:17:49
135.   Icaros

Would you believe I've never actually seen that film?

2006-06-08 17:21:40
136.   Marty
135 Words fail me
2006-06-08 17:23:31
137.   D4P
It's not business. It's personal.

It's not you. It's him.

2006-06-08 17:25:03
138.   Icaros

Nor have I seen Chinatown, nor Citizen Kane, nor Jurassic Park, nor Titanic.

But I have seen Godfather 2!

2006-06-08 17:28:42
139.   Sam DC
Robinson's pretty tough to love on the business front. He plays obvious favorites and rips the ones he doesn't like in the papers. He burns out pitchers' arms like he's got something to prove to Dusty Baker. He goads young players into playing hurt like real men, and is shocked when they won't fess up to injury and take their medicine on the DL. Last night, he had his cleanup hitter bunt with two on, no outs, in a one-run game, and he had a relief pitcher bat with two outs bases loaded and just a three run lead and two innings of the other side to go.
2006-06-08 17:29:03
140.   Steve
[bursting with pride] I have not seen Titanic either!
2006-06-08 17:29:53
141.   D4P
I saw Casablanca for the first (and only) time a few years ago.

Never seen Chinatown or Jurassic Park

Citizen Kane and Titanic are both on my Most Overrated of All Time list.

2006-06-08 17:30:16
142.   Uncle Miltie
I don't see how anyone can hate Frank Robinson more than Jeff Kent. I know you think that Frank Robinson is a bitter old man, but wouldn't you be too if a bunch of roiders were passing records you set as a player without the benefit of "modern medicine"?
2006-06-08 17:30:19
143.   bhsportsguy
138 But do you remember when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?
2006-06-08 17:30:25
144.   Jon Weisman
138 - There's something remarkably uneven about that list. I mean, I don't see any unique common thread about those movies, except that they are movies.
2006-06-08 17:31:38
145.   Icaros

I wish I could say I haven't seen E.T. as well, but I have, in the theater, when the FBI still carried guns and one of the kids was a terrorist for Halloween.

2006-06-08 17:36:11
146.   Icaros

I don't like Ben Affleck movies.


No unique common thread, just movies I've taken flak for not seeing over the years, be it teachers or moronic coworkers.

2006-06-08 17:36:39
147.   D4P
No shame in having seen E.T., especially as a kid. I'm pretty sure I cried.
2006-06-08 17:36:43
148.   underdog
I shudder at the mention of Titanic and Citizen Kane in the same sentence. Btw, I just saw a press screening of Melville's Army of Shadows, and if you get a chance to see this incredible film (I believe it's playing in LA right now?) do so. It was forever out of print and never seen here til it was restored this year. Drama about the French resistance in WWII. Magnifique.
2006-06-08 17:37:14
149.   underdog
But to bring this back to baseball - anyone else notice that David Ross hit a home run today and now has 6 for the Reds?
2006-06-08 17:37:25
150.   Sam DC
Meanwhile, Royce Clayton has double Soriano home twice tonight.

I'm shocked, shocked. And not in the Casablanca way.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2006-06-08 17:37:41
151.   Linkmeister
144 Yeah, I see no connection. I was out of the country from 72-78 so I didn't see a single first-run movie for six years, but even that wouldn't keep me from seeing movies as far apart in time as Casablanca and Titanic.

Unless...Icaros! Are you a space alien?

2006-06-08 17:39:06
152.   GoBears
141. Citizen Kane was revolutionary for its technical achievements. Until computers got into the act, nearly everything in modern movie-making was invented for CK. Naturally, it doesn't seem all that special today.

As for Titanic - ugh. I never heard anyone say that that piece of garbage was a high quality film. It was wildly popular, but pretty widely panned, I believe. Not overrated because everyone knew it was gawdawful.

2006-06-08 17:40:23
153.   Eric L
141 Citizen Kane is a great movie and I can see where you get the overrated thing from. However, part of the mystique and aura sounding the movie is groundbreaking in many ways.

145 I thought the coolest thing about the DVD release was that if I wanted to, I was still able to see the FBI with guns on one disc and the Lucasized version on another.

146 There are certain movies that my friends razz me about too. I hear the most about Slingblade and Shindler's List. I did read Shindler's List though.

2006-06-08 17:42:39
154.   Linkmeister
I think some movies get "must-see" status no matter their quality. Many of us knew "Titanic" was gonna be the talked-about film of the year, so in self-defense we saw it.

My theory, anyway. "Da Vinci Code" might be another, and in the liberal blogosphere, "An Inconvenient Truth," Al Gore's movie could be a third.

2006-06-08 17:42:54
155.   Greg S
129- I would say... wow. Really amazing if you ever get the opportunity... it really is quite a fun experience.
2006-06-08 17:50:13
156.   Icaros
Unless...Icaros! Are you a space alien?

I am an Earthling, but I was once drafted into the Martian army many years ago to wage purposely unsuccessful war against my own people and ultimately help establish The First Church of God the Utterly Indifferent.


Is the terrorist costume still on the disc with the FBI and guns?

2006-06-08 17:51:37
157.   Telemachos
When I saw ET in theaters as a kid, I was bored. (Then again, I wasn't much into movies back then.) I also hated KANE when I first saw it as a teenager; then re-caught it in college and fell in love with it.

I'll also defend TITANIC -- people hate it because it made a bazillion dollars and won all the awards... but it's a very craftily-made, well-constructed blockbuster. But it was fun to root for it back when it was expected to be a complete bomb and then started raking in the cash week after week.

Now that I've lived in LA for a few years, I should re-visit CHINATOWN.

2006-06-08 17:51:52
158.   Linkmeister
156 Heh. Good thing that Martian Army's gone all-voluntary these days.
2006-06-08 17:52:23
159.   bhsportsguy
146 Not that movie but certainly the funniest movie to be referred to in this thread.
2006-06-08 17:53:21
160.   D4P
Regarding Titanic: I remember enjoying the story of the ship and its sinking, but hating the "love" story.
2006-06-08 17:56:03
161.   Sam DC
Ah, it takes a proud man to admit he liked it where the ship crashed and a thousand people drowned and froze, but the two kids flirting and necking and falling in love, retch!
2006-06-08 17:57:45
162.   Icaros
Good thing that Martian Army's gone all-voluntary these days.

It served its purpose.

2006-06-08 17:59:42
163.   bhsportsguy
159 Jon, please tell me you got the reference.

Okay, some baseball stuff, more props to Logan White from Peter Gammons insider blog...
" Some teams raised eyebrows when the Dodgers took Preston Mattingly with the 31st pick. Perhaps not that many teams saw Mattingly, but the Red Sox, for one club, were very disappointed when Logan White and the Dodgers grabbed him; Boston had planned to take him with the 40th pick. "He has a chance to be a monster player; we love him," says one Red Sox official. "I remember Preston in the clubhouse as a kid," says Buck Showalter. "He always had the eyes, that look Donnie has. He was always different from the other kids who'd be around."

2006-06-08 18:04:41
164.   dzzrtRatt
Re: Titanic. I'm as much of a movie snob as anybody, but I thought Titanic was excellent. The story was about the 20th century, and the way innocent people get trapped in the giant machines that characterize our age. To articulate that theme, Cameron had to show us the entire social strata of the ship's passengers, as well as its physical landscape. The love story was a highly flexible vehicle to accomplish that. Yeah, the love story was corny, but Kate Winslett's talent and charm made it more than bearable.
2006-06-08 18:09:45
165.   Sam DC
My wife is watching Independence Day in the next room. She doesn't know that I know she's watching, and she keeps glancing over here worried I'll come barging in.
2006-06-08 18:11:04
166.   natepurcell
Perhaps not that many teams saw Mattingly, but the Red Sox, for one club, were very disappointed when Logan White and the Dodgers grabbed him; Boston had planned to take him with the 40th pick. "He has a chance to be a monster player; we love him," says one Red Sox official

hes 6'3 200lbs and from what I've read, what excites scouts about him is his bat and athleticism. If he can stick at shorstop, he could be a monster. As long as he hits, I dont really care about defensive positions right now.

2006-06-08 18:11:55
167.   Icaros

I saw that the day it opened. Don't ask me why.

2006-06-08 18:12:25
168.   bhsportsguy
Oh Nate: Just tuned into the Jacksonville game and a certain 3B is not playing today, will try to find out what is going on but with their playoff spot clinched maybe someone got a promotion?
2006-06-08 18:12:49
169.   Sam DC
163 I'll vouch for Jon. He's probably out buying 10,000 marbles.
2006-06-08 18:13:32
170.   Icaros
As long as he hits, I dont really care about defensive positions right now.

Are you talking baseball now, or "baseball"?

2006-06-08 18:15:40
171.   Sam DC
167 Me too, with said wife (then gf). Think it was at the Village Theater. Remember the trailer for Star Wars re-release getting the most enormous cheer I've ever experienced in a movie theater.
2006-06-08 18:16:02
172.   Eric L
153 IIRC, there is one version in the set that is completely untouched. ET is still a puppet in a couple of scenes, the FBI dudes have guns, and the terrorists still trick or treat.

The other version has a CGI ET in a couple of scenes (ala Yoda in the re-released Star Wars trilogy), the guns are walkie talkies, and the terrorists don't trick or treat anymore.

2006-06-08 18:16:50
173.   Blu2
(164) I thought everything about Titanic stunk, most of all the performers. It's hard to consider anything with Billy Zane in it as serious.
2006-06-08 18:17:31
174.   bhsportsguy
Darn if I knew they would give out tickets to everyone who picked Kershaw and Morris, I would have done that too, check out the Dodger blog, Josh said that 8 folks should be receiving e-mails if they picked Kershaw and Morris. I went outside the box and got burned.
2006-06-08 18:18:21
175.   bhsportsguy
169 Thank you sir, may I have another.
2006-06-08 18:18:32
176.   natepurcell

I saw that too. Maybe its a promotion. Maybe its just a day off.


Ethier/Orr :)

2006-06-08 18:24:42
177.   Icaros
Remember the trailer for Star Wars re-release getting the most enormous cheer I've ever experienced in a movie theater.

Historically, that cheer was probably very similar to the one I let out the day LA signed Darryl Strawberry.

2006-06-08 18:31:51
178.   Bob Timmermann
Saying "Titanic" and "Citizen Kane" are both overrated is sort of like saying Tony Womack and Hank Greenberg are both overrated.
2006-06-08 18:32:38
179.   sanchez101
Scott Erickson isnt any better now than he was last year, I wonder when Joe Torre will figure this out.
2006-06-08 18:35:36
180.   overkill94
Put me in the pro-Titanic boat, it's just such a grand story that it seems it would be hard for someone not to like it if you just let yourself get immersed in it.

Citizen Kane and Chinatown were both highly-touted older movies that I was pretty disappointed with. I know it's hard to appreciate some older movies without having the proper historical perspective though.

2006-06-08 18:36:03
181.   D4P
Those kids weren't even married!

You heard me!

2006-06-08 18:40:38
182.   Bob Timmermann
180 181

I weep for the two of you. I truly weep. I think I will stop by the cathedral on my lunch hour and light candles for both of you.

Why don't you just go put on a Giants cap and wear a replica Russ Ortiz jersey while you're at it?

I feel like my guts have been torn out, stepped on, run over by a car, and then eaten by a ferret.

2006-06-08 18:42:43
183.   capdodger
Titanic: Ugh.... Saw that tripe in a packed theatre at fifteen with my mother.

She kept screaming at Leo to wash his hair, and cheered when he slipped under. I was (only slightly) mortified.

Casablanca: That was a "first date" movie for my wife and I. I was working for my college's summer programs department, so I took over one of the auditorium halls and we had our own movie theatre.
Chinatown: Second date. Same place, same MO.

2006-06-08 18:45:09
184.   Icaros
Gagne experienced discomfort warming up in the bullpen Tuesday night, but pitched anyway, retiring the New York Mets in order in the ninth inning for his first save in nearly a year.

Let's play "Guess what is really inside of Gagne's skull."

My guess:

Two scoops of freshly opened, uncooked, Ranch Style Beans.

2006-06-08 18:45:18
185.   D4P
If it makes Bob's guts feel any better, I think I liked Casablanca.

PS: Is the feeling associated with ferrets eating one's guts distinct from the feeling associated with other animals eating one's guts?

2006-06-08 18:46:21
186.   Linkmeister
I'm impressed that no one has yet taken the obvious route of slamming "Titanic" solely on the basis of that awful song.
2006-06-08 18:48:33
187.   D4P
I was under the impression that Jon had instituted an unwritten ban on all "Celine Dion" related topics.
2006-06-08 18:48:45
188.   overkill94
182 To hopefully at least partially redeem myself, I thought Casebalanca was an awesome movie, one of the few old movies that I truly loved. From Here to Eternity was another one I loved. I'm trying to catch up on all the classics, but obviously I have a lot of history to cover.
2006-06-08 18:50:37
189.   Icaros

Wow, for some reason that little date description was so cute to me that I actually feel very sad right now.

2006-06-08 18:50:52
190.   Linkmeister
187 Oh, dear. Well, if it's an unwritten ban how was I to know? (Hangs head in shame.)
2006-06-08 18:52:57
191.   Sam DC
174 Pretty classy way to resolve the contest. I actually like the little anecdote about Little and the dress code they have up right now too. Nice to get some actual information/facts about some of these softer things that just get talked around in very vague ways.
2006-06-08 18:53:50
192.   Icaros

Would you argue that the song from Titanic is worse than the Whitney Houston song from The Bodyguard?

Just curious.

2006-06-08 18:54:35
193.   Bob Timmermann
I guess talking about Celine Dion is sort of like stealing a base when you're up by five or more runs.
2006-06-08 18:56:47
194.   Linkmeister
192 No. They're equally bad.

The only thing Whitney Houston's ever done that I liked was her rendition of the Star Spangled Banner at the Super Bowl during the first Gulf War. That was a spine-tingler, or as we say out here, it was chicken-skin time.

2006-06-08 18:56:49
195.   D4P
Ugh. I hated The Bodyguard! I saw it with a nice but annoying girl who really liked me and never shut up. I didn't feel the same way about her that she felt about me. It was awkward.

The Bodyguard was Overrated.

2006-06-08 19:00:20
196.   overkill94
Don't people have to generally like a movie for it to be overrated? I thought all the buzz about the movie was about the song when it came out, not the actual content of the movie.
2006-06-08 19:01:32
197.   Steve
Nor have I seen The Bodyguard!
2006-06-08 19:02:10
198.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
165 - In ID4, during Bill Pullman's go-get-'em speech - the "St. Crispin's Day" moment, if you will - I got choked up.
In my defense, I may have been WUI - watching under the influence.
2006-06-08 19:03:23
199.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
Two scoops of freshly opened, uncooked, Ranch Style Beans.
Ooh, integral ingredients for my chili recipe.
2006-06-08 19:03:49
200.   overkill94
152 Titanic wasn't panned by the critics, it received 62 favorable reviews out of 72 according to Not to mention the obligatory 5-star rating from
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2006-06-08 19:06:09
201.   Icaros
I saw it with a nice but annoying girl who really liked me and never shut up.

I imagine she could have at least talked over the lousy movie.

For the record, I have not seen The Bodyguard either, but I could've buried myself 88 feet underground in 1992 and still would not have been able to avoid hearing that song.

2006-06-08 19:06:28
202.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
I feel like my guts have been torn out, stepped on, run over by a car, and then eaten by a ferret.
Would said ferret drag your guts to the side of the road, or is it also in danger of being run over?
Because if it's the latter, that's way cruel of you to put a ferret in such danger.
2006-06-08 19:08:49
203.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
200 - From what I recall, the critics echoed an artsy friend's sentiment: Titanic may have been formulaic and sappy mass-market entertainment, but it was excellent formulaic and sappy mass-market entertainment.
2006-06-08 19:08:54
204.   Bob Timmermann
Through four innings in Kansas City

Texas - 038 0
KC - 404 1

2006-06-08 19:09:49
205.   Bob Timmermann
The Rangers and Royals also combined for 25 hits in the first four innings.
2006-06-08 19:11:28
206.   overkill94
203 That's pretty much how I feel about it. Pearl Harbor had the same elements, but was possibly the worst movie I've ever seen.
2006-06-08 19:11:41
207.   Icaros
Texas - 038 0
KC - 404 1

The Timmermann Code?

2006-06-08 19:13:40
208.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
206 - Noow that I'm doing the Netflix thing, I intend to rent Pearl Harbor and watch only the battle scenes. Why waste time on the entirety of a lousy movie when you can simple cut straight to the good parts?
2006-06-08 19:13:49
209.   Andrew Shimmin
I didn't like Titanic, but no movie with naked Kate Winslet can be all bad. Except Hideous Kinky. And Holy Smoke! (exclamation point not mine) Quills was pretty bad too. Hmm, this theory requires more thought.
2006-06-08 19:14:59
210.   Linkmeister
I never did get the complaint about knowing the end of "Titanic"; what the heck, we knew the end of "The Longest Day," too. For that matter, if they hadn't tacked Doolittle's raid on, we'd have known the end of "Pearl Harbor."
2006-06-08 19:16:31
211.   Icaros
Sorry for the dreadful pop culture reference in 207 (I haven't seen or read TDC, by the way), but I couldn't tell if Bob meant for us to glean some "other" significance from those numbers.
2006-06-08 19:17:13
212.   Linkmeister
208 If you want good battle scenes, try "Midway" or "Tora! Tora! Tora!"

For a different war, try "Gettysburg," which was almost a word-for-word translation from Michael Shaara's "The Killer Angels."

2006-06-08 19:19:14
213.   Bob Timmermann

Nope, it's nothing more than a demonstration of the fact that you can't really format numbers well in the comments.

2006-06-08 19:20:30
214.   Sam DC
198 It's on now. "And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday . . ."
2006-06-08 19:23:51
215.   Icaros

Does your use of second-person POV aim to single me out, personally?

2006-06-08 19:26:41
216.   Marty
I leave for home and movie thoughts really breaks out. Icaros, of all the movies you've listed, go see Chinatown. It holds up really well. I'm going to the Orpheum theater on Broadway next week to see it.

I didn't think Titanic was that great, but it was tolerable. I'm in love with Kate Winslet.

Citizen Kane gets better every time I see it.

ET is unwatchable.

2006-06-08 19:27:44
217.   Bob Timmermann

Just breaking the fourth wall.

2006-06-08 19:27:54
218.   D4P
ET is unwatchable

It was watchable for a 9 year old in 1983, but I'm guessing it hasn't stood the test of time.

2006-06-08 19:28:15
219.   Linkmeister
It wouldn't hurt to read a little history of the Owens Valley and Hetch Hetchy before seeing "Chinatown", I'd guess.
2006-06-08 19:29:20
220.   Marty
At the grocery store the other day, I noticed they were selling a DVD of one of my favorite war movies. "Attack". An obscure Robert Aldrich movie from the fifties starring Jack Palance and Eddie Albert, with Lee Marvin and Buddy Ebsen. Albert is a cowardly commanding officer during the battle of the bulge. It's a really good movie.
2006-06-08 19:30:52
221.   Marty
I was a 27 year old in 1983 and sat through it with a girlfriend just to get her back to the apartment.
2006-06-08 19:32:36
222.   Icaros

My problem with Chinatown is that this smug, boring, annoyingly self-satisfied professor I had used to always use Chinatown as The Bible for our screenwriting class.

It's a case of guilt by association. I'm also lazy and just never think to go out of my way to see it.

2006-06-08 19:33:31
223.   Icaros

Nicely done.

2006-06-08 19:36:57
224.   Uncle Miltie
The Pirates leadoff hitter- .228/.305/.349. Scrappy Jack Wilson, whose best offensive tool is bunting bats 2nd. Meanwhile, Freddy Sanchez and Jose Castillo bat 6th and 7th, respectively. Jeromy .293 OBP Burnitz is "protecting" Jason Bay.
2006-06-08 19:37:29
225.   bhsportsguy
Films that rely on special effects are not going to age well but sometimes the story and characters will carry it.

Case in point, Star Wars, Episode 4. Now trust me you kids out there, at its time, it was very cool to see those long panned shots of models with the robots and those goofy creatures in the cantina scene.

But it was the story and the characters that carried that film and its sequels.

Now, I also the last 3 prequels and they also have their charm (Yoda's fight with the Emperor in the last one was great), all the new graphics and effects could not make up for some problems with the story, although it must be hard when everyone knows where you are going, I think it could have been done in 2 films but since the original had 3, so be it.

2006-06-08 19:41:24
226.   D4P
I agree. The "special" effects in the first 3 Star Wars movies are of the short bus variety, but the dialogue, characters, etc. are all memorable.

The last 3 movies were all about effects, with horrendous dialogue. I have already forgotten them.

2006-06-08 19:42:55
227.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
212 - I saw Gettysburg, in the theater. Four hours, forty minutes, with a 15-minute intermission.

214 - (sniffle)

225 - those goofy creatures in the cantina scene
My life was forever altered when I, a 6-year-old, was escorted into the Mos Eisley cantina for the first time.

2006-06-08 19:44:29
228.   Gold Star for Robot Boy
D-Backs trail the Mets 5-0, top 4.
2006-06-08 19:45:40
229.   bhsportsguy
226 I think the appeal will vary due to what order you saw them, my friend's kids who saw the most recent three will pick those ahead of the first three everytime.

One of the few programs that stand up to this day is "I Love Lucy." Such a classic show with its simple plots but great performances entertains kids who are seeing for the first time and folks like me who have seen every episode too many times to count.

2006-06-08 19:47:06
230.   Steve
Matt Kemp just hit another one out. That guy can M*A*S*H
2006-06-08 19:52:15
231.   Disabled List
Please allow me to add "Forrest Gump" to the list of hugely popular movies that are vastly overrated.
2006-06-08 19:53:10
232.   Sam DC
Alfonso Soriano scored four of the Nationals' five runs tonight, including hitting his 23rd home run.
2006-06-08 19:53:25
233.   bhsportsguy
226 I still think if he knew that Luke and Princess Leia were going to brother and sister, he would not have had them kiss (albeit in the first movie it was a peck on the cheek) but the second time in the medical facility, well....

And to me, the most interesting thing is how would you introduce to someone who has never seen any of the films, if they watch the prequels, then they know that Darth Vader is Anakin Skywalker which will spoil the bit when Luke meets "Ben" Kenobi, etc., etc., and how climatic will the scene in the Empire Strikes Back when Darth Vader tells Luke he is their father.

And if you watch the original 3, what's the point of the first 3.

2006-06-08 19:54:04
234.   bhsportsguy
230 Did he get traded?
2006-06-08 19:58:17
235.   Bob Timmermann

There's a sentiment I can get behind!

My intestines feel better now.

2006-06-08 19:59:38
236.   D4P
I've never seen Forrest Gump, but even I know it's Overrated.
2006-06-08 19:59:44
237.   ToyCannon
Treasure of the Sierra Madre

I liked ET as a teen-ager, I liked ET as an adult, and I liked ET as a middle-aged man. I figure by the time I don't like ET it will mean I've turned into an old curmudgeon. I've had a crush on Drew Barrymore ever since she flashed David Letterman on his birthday.

2006-06-08 20:01:52
238.   ToyCannon
I think it is safe to say we were wrong about Soriano. His bat evidently can play in RFK. It will be very interesting to see what Bowden can extort for him come July.
2006-06-08 20:05:04
239.   Bob Timmermann
The Royals are now up on Texas 16-11 in the 7th.
2006-06-08 20:07:41
240.   regfairfield
238 I guess we didn't take into account how badly Alfonso wanted to get paid.

The best thing about that trade is that it doesn't matter what Soriano does, it was still dumb. The Nationals have no hope of contending no matter what he does, so all Alfonso adds is a payroll burden, and gets rid of a couple of guys who could help them in later years. Given how much they hate Ryan Church, how badly do the Nats want Termel Sledge right about now.

2006-06-08 20:08:32
241.   ToyCannon
Hochevar is making all the difference.
2006-06-08 20:10:32
242.   bhsportsguy
Went back and listened to the Jacksonville Suns pregame show, the Jacksonville manager said that he gave Andy LaRoche the night off since they clinched the night before.

As to the game, the Suns were down 7-0 and then scored 10 unanswered runs to win 10-7, Tony Abreu hit a home run.

The manager also noted that there was a chance of roster moves, guys going up or down but they will focus on their chance to defend their league title.

2006-06-08 20:11:53
243.   bhsportsguy
239 I think you need to go watch a movie.
2006-06-08 20:13:32
244.   Marty
237 Wow, that is on my top 5 list. I love that movie.

"Fred C. Dobbs never says nothin he don't mean"

2006-06-08 20:14:47
245.   bhsportsguy
Noticed that Shaq is 0-7 from the line, I wonder if Riles will sit him if the game is close (Shaq always says he will make them when they count.) Dallas, back in the Don Nelson days, was a heavy practioner of the Hack a Shaq strategy.

Riles can't complain, they fouled Ben Wallace repeatedly during that series in the 4th quarter.

2006-06-08 20:16:13
246.   bhsportsguy
244 Pardon me, can you help a fellow Dodger fan who is down on his luck?

Used to greater effect in a classic Bugs Bunny cartoon featuring a penquin.

2006-06-08 20:19:15
247.   Eric L
233 I generally enjoyed the new trilogy, so I guess you can say that these comments are from a favorable fan. I also think that the series should be watched from 4-6 and then 1-3.

The new trilogy is essentially Darth Vader's (or Anakin's) story.

2006-06-08 20:19:39
248.   Sam DC
240 I was critical of the trade, but I don't see it like that. Soriano has played so well, I'd say he is more valuable to the Nationals in prospects than one more year of Brad Wilkerson would be. Hard to know about the other pieces of the deal -- Galarraga is pitcing in AA, 1-6 with a 5.49 ERA (sorry that's all I found) and Sledge is playing in Portland AAA.
2006-06-08 20:21:36
249.   ToyCannon
All depends now on what Bowden gets. He is about the only reason to head out to RFK isn't he?

Hopefully Patterson will come back healed and deal.

2006-06-08 20:30:18
250.   coachjpark

For those that might be interested, the link above is some photos that I took with my disposable camera on June 5th.

It was quite a surreal experience. I was on the field about an hour before game time, chatting with none other than Larry King of all people. I see Jeff Boras talking on his phone, and sitting behind him is "Dumb and Dumber" star Jeff Daniels.

Precisely at 7:00 PM, I am introduced onto the field as a special guest from Waddell & Reed and Los Altos High School. I had planned on going through this big routine of taking off my glove and walking around the mound -- things that I used to do when I was a relief pitcher at Claremont McKenna not too long ago. Instead, I'm on the rubber and it sinks in that I'm on the mound at Dodger Stadium. So I don't shake the catcher (my older brother) off nor do I engage in any pre-first rituals that I had planned.

I go from the stretch, but consciously in an Eric Gagne-like half-stretch, half-windup. I take a big leg kick, and I fire the pitch. The ball tails a bit and goes low and inside (to a righty). My brother half-trots to the mind and shakes my hand and we are whisked off next to the Dodger dugout, and the National Anthem is played. We then go right past the Dodger dugout. In a jovial manner, Eddie Murray acknowledges my group (partly because my brother already knew him during his internship with the Padres as Dave Winfield's intern ), and I say what's up to Odalis Perez as he's leaning on the rail of the dugout. Somewhat in a daze, Odalis acknowledges my greeting.

We're escorted to the club section. I sit down, and about 1 minute later after a Jose Reyes and Carlos Delgado bomba, the Dodgers are down 3-0 and I think to half-jokingly think to myself, "Man, I could do better than that."

It doesn't quite end there. After the game, one of my friends who was with me on the field said that one of the Dodger employees that works the gun (his name's Tom) approached him and asked if he was the one that caught the first pitch. My friend (Steve) said no. Tom informs him that I was clocked at 82 mph and that that was the hardest that he's seen from a first pitch in the 5 years that he's been there.

The whole experience was somewhat short, surreal, and sweet.

Can't wait to get the DVD that the Dodgers said they'd provide so that I can see what actually happened.

Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2006-06-08 20:31:47
251.   capdodger
212 For a different war, try "Gettysburg," which was almost a word-for-word translation from Michael Shaara's "The Killer Angels."

Which is very heavily influenced by John Pullen's "The 20th Maine".

2006-06-08 20:33:38
252.   Robert Daeley
So, how about that Texas-KC game line, eh?

Top of the 9th:

12 17 2
16 18 2

2006-06-08 20:36:18
253.   Sam DC
Great stpry Coach. Congrats.
2006-06-08 20:41:06
254.   LAT
Very cool Coach. 82! Our 5th starter is amung us.
2006-06-08 20:44:46
255.   LAT
Coach, in the second to last picture, in the background it looks like they have you on diamondvision. (I don't think they call it a jumbotron anymore)
2006-06-08 20:46:11
256.   coachjpark
255 Yeah, you could tell there's a delay
2006-06-08 20:47:13
257.   coachjpark
I think I ended up taking Timmermann's advice with the low and away. It definitely wasn't a strike; if there was a batter, he would have been hit or very close to being hit.
2006-06-08 20:47:55
258.   capdodger
Nice photo series CJP.
2006-06-08 20:57:19
259.   Bob Timmermann
82 mph! I remember cracking the radar gun at 45 once.

Then I fell over after the pitch.

My nephew enjoyed watching that.

2006-06-08 20:58:42
260.   Disabled List
257 Don't feel bad, Coach. Tomko gets paid $3.6 million for pretty much the same thing.
2006-06-08 21:01:12
261.   D4P
Isn't that a reason to feel bad?
2006-06-08 21:11:26
262.   StolenMonkey86
One thing must be remembered.


That is absolutely horrible, and I'm so glad we got rid of him.

2006-06-08 21:16:31
263.   Bob Timmermann
The DBacks lost 7-1.

So ... if the DBacks lose tomorrow and the Dodgers win, we will have the famed ...

flat-footed tie for first.

2006-06-08 21:34:45
264.   Bob Timmermann
The Pirates announcer just read a poem imploring Pittsburgh fans to vote for Jason Bay, Jack Wilson, Jose Castillo, and Freddie Sanchez for the All-Star game.
2006-06-08 21:34:46
265.   Jon Weisman
250 - Congratulations! Great story. I'm going to put it in a main post.

Did you mean Scott Boras, or is there a Jeff Boras?

2006-06-08 21:38:25
266.   LAT
Icaros, as someone who has developed some movie credibility with you I can highly recommend Chinatown. It makes my all time Top 5. The scene where Jack gets his nose cut still hurts to watch.

Body Guard may be one of the five worst movies ever made. The theme song is worse than Titanic, especially the version where Jack and Rose are talking in the background. And yes Celin Dion and her goofy accent should have the same place on DT as swearing and politics.

Titanic was really good for it realism. I though James Cameron did a masterful job of really making you feel what it would have been like to be on the boat, no matter what class of passenger you would have been. The love story not so good, but as Ratt pointed out it was a the vehicle.

Another of my Top 5 Favorite list would be Jaws. The scene where Robert Shaw and Dreyfuss are comparing wounds is one of the great scenes of all time. It was even funny when Kevin Smith recreated it in Chasing Amy, another one of my favorites (in spite of Ben Afflick).

As for Bogart movies I like To Have and Have Not. Maybe it has more to do with Lauren Bacall as 'Slim'. She was so sexy in that movie.

[Slim kisses Steve]
Steve: What did you do that for?
Slim: I've been wondering if I'd like it.
Steve: What's the decision?
Slim: I don't know yet.
[They kiss again]
Slim: It's even better when you help.

How come they can't make movies like that anymore?

2006-06-08 21:39:38
267.   Andrew Shimmin
Did it go a little something like this?

Vote for Bay, Castillo, and Jack.
And Sanchez, he's surely no hack.
Don't make them lose face-y,
Just because Jim Tracy,
is hopelessly addicted to crack.

2006-06-08 21:41:42
268.   Jon Weisman
Coach's story is now up in a new post.
2006-06-08 21:47:16
269.   LAT
4-4 in SF. Jim Tracy is still screwing us.
2006-06-08 21:52:37
270.   Uncle Miltie
Bob, one day you should devote one entry on your blog to Frank Robinson. Just explain when and how this deep hatred for this man developed. It would be interesting to read.
2006-06-08 21:53:21
271.   Uncle Miltie
269- don't worry, Benitez is pitching. There's a good chance he'll blow it.
2006-06-08 22:04:03
272.   Blu2
(220) Attack. Good movie. I love the scene where the German tank runs over Jack Palance's arm...
2006-06-08 22:17:23
273.   Bob Timmermann

It would be hard to do it justice unless I was able to use props.

2006-06-09 10:19:52
274.   lukemccain
As for Bogart movies I like To Have and Have Not. Maybe it has more to do with Lauren Bacall as 'Slim'. She was so sexy in that movie.

[Slim kisses Steve]
Steve: What did you do that for?
Slim: I've been wondering if I'd like it.
Steve: What's the decision?
Slim: I don't know yet.
[They kiss again]
Slim: It's even better when you help.

How come they can't make movies like that anymore?
Because Hollywood is run by a bunch of 20 and 30 something marketing executives who are targeting the pre-teen and teen market.
And who today is able to portray the smouldering sex appeal of Lauren Bacall, not to mention the cool and aloof manner of Humphrey Bogart? The lighting and Black and White look of that film really enhance Bacall's features and today's audience probably would not appreciate such artistry.

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.