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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
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Hardball Times Dodger Preview
2007-03-22 00:10
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

What's in store for the Dodgers in 2007? It's a question that leads to more questions in this piece I wrote for the The Hardball Times:

Thrill of victory? Agony of defeat? The Los Angeles Dodgers had it all in the wide, wide world of 2006. They produced this decade's nominee for Game of the Century with September's 4+1 game: four consecutive solo home runs in the bottom of the ninth to tie San Diego, followed by a two-run shot in the 10th to win. And they quickly turned around to offer the year's Vinko Bogataj, when Jeff Kent and J.D. Drew were tagged out at home on the same play in the National League Division Series.

Buoyed by some of the best organizational depth in baseball and a payroll apparently so limitless that ... well, we'll get to that later ... the Dodgers would figure to be poised collect themselves from last season's highs and lows and make an even deeper playoff run in 2007. But some questions remain. About five, in fact ...

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Comments
2007-03-22 00:29:03
1.   overkill94
For those in the game thread wondering about the annoying bell - it's actually a large bearded man who has a bell set up behind home plate on the 3rd base side that he uses quite frequently. Personally, I was a bit annoyed by it when I went to the games, but the regulars actually seemed to like it.
2007-03-22 00:38:43
2.   trainwreck
Nice write up Jon.

I think our season depends on how quick Ned and Grady are willing to bring in someone else for a struggling player. How long till Loney, Kemp, and La Roche get called up? If some starters are not being effective, how long till we see Billingsley or Kuo in the rotation? As one can see, I expect the young players to get the shaft.

I suspect the new free agents to get the benefit of the doubt for awhile, but someone like Tomko may get the quick hook. I am not really sure if there is any position player that would get a quick hook.

2007-03-22 01:33:44
3.   gpellamjr
Hey, regfairfield, I voted for you. In all sincerity, I enjoy your articles as much as Jon's, and all things being equal, I chose the underdog... oh yeah, and I believe there is the little matter of some compromising pictures?
2007-03-22 02:30:56
4.   Doug N
you just keep racking up the pub creds, huh jon?
2007-03-22 05:49:42
5.   Andrew Shimmin
3- Tell me that man shouldn't be played by Pee Wee Herman!
2007-03-22 06:09:38
6.   Greg Brock
Most brilliant manager in the history of baseball charged with a DUI:

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2807935

2007-03-22 07:26:19
7.   3upn3down
2 Questions:

What is your prediction for Randy Wolf's pitching line this season?

And do you think Dodger fans will have the stomach to stick with him given his history of slow starts and dominant second halves he developed before running into the injury tree?

2007-03-22 07:53:12
8.   Sushirabbit
7 as opposed to Penny, who has the great first half and cruddy 2nd?

Has there ever been an infield that each it 20 HRs? I'm guessing that the Dodgers have an outside shot at doing it this year.

2007-03-22 08:04:17
9.   regfairfield
8 I'm sure Teixiera, Soriano, Young and Blalock did at some point.
2007-03-22 08:09:16
10.   Bumsrap
The Dodgers have been sinking into their depth of pitching. Penny may not have a healthy arm and Tomko is beginning to pitch less like March and April and more like May and June.

If Billingsley is forced into the rotation now I think the pitching will be better for it through July and then as Billingsley begins to tire, suffer in September. I think the Dodgers will be best served if Kuo and Bills don't get into the rotation until mid May and until then keep their pitch count well below what it would be if they were starters at the beginning of season.

Offensively, the answer is simple. Move Nomar to third and assume Kemp will be ready by June to be the needed right handed bat.

2007-03-22 08:39:21
11.   Sushirabbit
9 Yep, 2004 and in 2005 Barajas even got over 20. Here's to hoping the Dodgers can swing that.
2007-03-22 09:14:28
12.   underdog
3 "I chose the underdog."

Thanks! But really, I think Jon and Reg and company do much more for baseball blogging. ;-)

I hope that the Dodgers bomb Trachsel today and Tomko is lights out. So the O's can see they still need another starter and that Tomko is their man. Or Joe Mays.

Speaking of being bombed, yikes, Tony La Russa.

2007-03-22 09:55:31
13.   CajunDodger
2
I think that Ned and, to a lesser extent, Grady are impatient and that they will put the best team on the field regardless.

As a fan, all I can do is hope that they show similar impatience that they showed in trading Navarro and promoting Saito and kicking Baez to the curb.

I will say that ALL FAITH WILL BE LOST if Wilson Valdez makes the team over Loney. If they want Valdez that bad, they need to cut Martinez and eat his relatively small contract. I swear I will kick a hole in the wall of my house if Loney gets the shaft.

2007-03-22 10:08:48
14.   D4P
A piper is down! Repeat, a piper is down...
2007-03-22 10:09:17
15.   mankatododger
Just don't let it be bad for Furcal
2007-03-22 10:11:41
16.   StolenMonkey86
The picture of Pierre pulling on Delgado's uniform is kind of funny.
2007-03-22 10:15:07
17.   still bevens
What happened to the 400 shortstops we used to have on our roster? Now all we got is Wilson Valdez? Sad face emoticon.
2007-03-22 10:16:14
18.   ToyCannon
Maybe we will see Nomar or Betemit trying to play SS. They couldnt' possibly go with Valdez, could they?
Yikes the one position we have no one ready.
Stiener does not make it sound good.
2007-03-22 10:19:05
19.   regfairfield
What happened?

3 Thanks, even though I have a hard time believing you :).

2007-03-22 10:21:31
20.   still bevens
19 Sounds like a collision with Repko. Im hoping its a bad sprain at worst. Steiner made it seem like the problem was in the ankle area.

Anyone know who's in the booth with Charlie? An asst. GM?

2007-03-22 10:21:55
21.   D4P
Fur-kle made an over the shoulder catch, crashed into Repko, and was carted off the field in obvious pain.
2007-03-22 10:22:17
22.   D4P
I think Mueller's in the booth with Steiner
2007-03-22 10:22:23
23.   Jon Weisman
Bill Mueller was supposed to be doing color today.
2007-03-22 10:22:37
24.   Jon Weisman
Oh, never mind ...
2007-03-22 10:23:52
25.   D4P
If nothing else, I've contributed "Oh, never mind" to the DT lexicon
2007-03-22 10:23:58
26.   GoBears
Repko's really helpin' the team out again eh?

To lighten the mood, and particularly to entertain Bob T., here's a quote from Gary Huckabay's Giants forecast on BP:

1. Get real about expectations. That means dump Russ Ortiz now, because there exists no plausible circumstance where he can help the club as a starting pitcher. The Giants are not a team that momentum and time are going to help. They need to be active, and trim the roster of guys who have absolutely no upside. Better to take a chance on someone, anyone, who has a semblance of stuff, upside, potential, electricity—whatever you want to call it. Russ Ortiz is not one of those guys. A good rule of thumb applies here—if a ballplayer seems like he would have been at home on the 2005 Orioles, ship him out.

2007-03-22 10:24:49
27.   Jon Weisman
New post up top.
2007-03-22 10:25:29
28.   GoBears
I should have mentioned that the Huckabay BP article is more than two weeks old. So many of you have probably seen it. Still, good stuff.
2007-03-22 10:33:48
29.   Steve
Thank goodness we have so many mediocre fifth starters clogging up the roster.

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