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About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
10) being annoyed by the existence of this list
11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Same Ol', Same Ol'
2008-05-27 06:27
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Every year, the Dodgers run into a slump hitting with runners in scoring position, and every year, it's attributed to some character deficiency on the team's part - this year, Joe Torre is telling the press it's all about inexperience - rather than one of those things that's part of baseball and always passes.

Don't get caught up in it. It's true that the Dodgers need to hit with runners in scoring position to be successful, especially because of their lack of power, but it's not some skill that they have failed to master. It's baseball.

  • The Dodgers have decided to give Andy LaRoche experience at first base. This is kind of like getting toothpaste for Christmas. While paving the way for the removal of Mark Sweeney from the team by creating a new backup first baseman, this isn't exactly the position where the most help is needed. James Loney is there, and just as relevant if not more so than his recent 0 for 13 slump (just missing a grand slam Monday) is an OPS of 1.019 in his previous 14 games. Loney has a career .814 OPS against lefties.

  • Jason Schmidt pitched three shutout innings in a Class A rehab start before allowing three chippy runs while striking out the side in a quirky fourth.

  • Comments (307)
    Show/Hide Comments 1-50
    2008-05-27 07:41:38
    1.   D4P
    2008 OPS w/RISP for Dodgers with 14 or more games player:

    Rafael Furcal 1.106
    Juan Pierre 0.974
    Matt Kemp 0.958
    Blake DeWitt 0.938
    James Loney 0.778
    Jeff Kent 0.774
    Andre Ethier 0.695
    R. Martin 0.665
    Chin-lung Hu 0.406
    Andruw Jones 0.245
    Mark Sweeney 0.222

    I see no obvious pattern relating to inexperience.

    2008-05-27 07:44:20
    2.   D4P
    BTW: Andruw Jones is 1-33 w/RISP this season.

    Given that a player is actually trying, going 1-33 seems almost impossible. Consider this:

    Lowe: 2-3
    Loaiza: 1-2
    Penny: 2-7
    Billingsley: 1-4
    Kuroda: 1-6

    2008-05-27 07:47:18
    3.   LAT
    Joe Torre is telling the press it's all about inexperience

    Last verse, same as the first verse. Didn't we run into this excuse last year when the team collapsed even though Martin, Loney, Kemp and Ethier all carrued the team. This year, Kent, Jones, Sweeney Todd (his new name casue he's a butcher) and more recently lack of a real SS are hurting us but its still about inexperience?

    2008-05-27 07:51:54
    4.   Xeifrank
    Re: LaRoche at 1B

    Whatever gets him to the major league level the quickest right? Doesn't mean he will play exclusively at 1B right. Could just mean he would become the emergency 1B if something happened to Loney. He could play once a week at 1B and once a week at 3B/LF perhaps. I'm not worried.
    vr, Xei

    2008-05-27 07:55:25
    5.   D4P
    On one hand, I'd tend to think LaRoche is better suited for 1B than LF.

    On the other hand, replacing Pierre in LF is better than replacing Loney at 1B.

    On the third hand, Pierre's not going anywhere, and DeWitt is experiencing his presumably inevitable decline, so maybe 3B will open up.

    2008-05-27 07:56:03
    6.   Jon Weisman
    4 - I'm not worried, but I think Andy would/will probably end up playing first base on more than an emergency level if Loney had the slightest slump, while not playing left field at all no matter how much of a slump might have. Of course, this assumes DeWitt never slumps, when in fact he is in one right now.
    2008-05-27 08:03:54
    7.   GoBears
    Some guys' slumps are harder to see, due to the soft focus and rose-colored classes.
    2008-05-27 08:04:51
    8.   dianagramr
    Jones with RISP, since 2000

    Yr AB Hits BA OBA Slug%
    00 173 48 .277 .369 .474
    01 147 42 .286 .380 .435
    02 167 43 .257 .378 .503
    03 195 53 .272 .362 .456
    04 171 39 .228 .353 .427
    05 184 38 .207 .335 .386
    06 173 48 .277 .402 .491
    07 173 40 .231 .360 .439
    08 33 1 .030 .214 .030

    2008-05-27 08:13:20
    9.   LogikReader
    Jon, the phrase "lack of power" tells the whole story. I don't think the Dodgers can be taken seriously until we can get at least one or two bats in the lineup that can be considered a power threat.

    Slumps are indeed inevitable. But without a bonafide home run hitter, the Dodgers will face a lot more of them. Last year only one person (Kent) even hit 20 home runs. This year, I don't see anyone, outside of Kemp, on that pace. That's unacceptable for a Championship Contending club.

    2008-05-27 08:15:17
    10.   Disabled List
    LaRoche at first base is like raaaaaaaain on your wedding day, or a free ride when you've already paid.
    2008-05-27 08:16:31
    11.   D4P
    This year, I don't see anyone, outside of Kemp, on that pace

    Kemp is on pace to hit 10 HRs.

    2008-05-27 08:16:44
    12.   Doctor
    Was there any update on Schmidts velocity? So the runs he gave up were fluky?
    2008-05-27 08:18:17
    13.   LogikReader
    11

    I was being generous.

    2008-05-27 08:18:39
    14.   Bumsrap
    If the youngest players will hit better in clutch situations when they get more experience, what will the oldest players with long-in-the-tooth experience do in the future that they are not doing now? Kent is not doing better than Loney, Martin, or Kemp.

    If Torre thinks young players need more patience lets hope Torre and Colletti can see that need in themselves as well.

    The big problem is Torre's failure to demonstrate by means of a lineup that this is the year the Dodgers will win or lose with Martin, Loney, Kemp, and Ethier and not Kent, Pierre, and Jones.

    2008-05-27 08:24:21
    15.   scareduck
    I really don't care whether they're chippy or not. Jason Schmidt's job is run prevention. If he can't do that in the Cal league, he shouldn't be on a major league roster. This being his third rehab start, I smell a push to get him into the rotation for strictly contractual reasons that will only serve to weaken the team further. Such a move might have the tonic effect of getting Ned Colletti fired, which would be a mildly positive outcome, but until Frank McCourt hires somebody who knows what he's doing and actually leaves him the heck alone to do it, there's little reason to believe the team will fare better under the next Dodgers GM.
    2008-05-27 08:25:45
    16.   Bumsrap
    If teams can see LaRoche being a young inexpensive first baseman with power and DeWitt as a dependable clutch inexpensive third baseman, the Dodgers have good trading pieces. They also Lowe or Penny they could trade. But my question is whether Colletti/Torre would go after a Beltre or a Zimerman?
    2008-05-27 08:26:07
    17.   scareduck
    9 - Slumps are indeed inevitable. But without a bonafide home run hitter, the Dodgers will face a lot more of them.

    You would have enjoyed yesterday's Angels game.

    2008-05-27 09:04:07
    18.   Eric Stephen
    From the Schmidt piece:

    >>Schmidt pitched three scoreless innings, yielding three runs (two earned) in a fourth inning that included an infield single, a catcher's interference call and two wild pitches<<

    Somebody sound the bell!

    2008-05-27 09:06:15
    19.   Marty
    I did enjoy yesterday's Angel game. I like scoreless games. It's when only one team is scoreless and the other has > 4 runs that it gets boring.
    2008-05-27 09:14:26
    20.   underdog
    Hey folks! I got back last night from my trip and watched the last two Dodger games in the MLBTV archives. (Boy, never try fast forwarding the control bar on that thing -- you'll never know where you end up in the game that way. Stupid Silverlight.)

    Anyway, I scanned through some of the comments, but did anyone talk about Clayton Kershaw? :-/
    Or is that ;-/ ?

    That was a joy to watch. As good as he is, that was still better than I expected. I'm glad they won that game, too, of course, although would've been peachy if he'd gotten the win. Yesterday's game was frustrating but not worth rehashing since everyone here's already said everything. As Jon said, slumps happen, they'll get back on track soon, but having Furcal back sure would help.

    Anyway, on to today's!

    2008-05-27 09:17:34
    21.   underdog
    15 Given the nature of how those runs scored, and given how he's pitched overall in his rehab stints, I think you're being too hard on him and the team's use of him. I mean, they called up Clayton Kershaw to fill in start, rather than doing what might have been "expected" - i.e., bring back Loiaza to pitch or rush Schmidt. Loiaza's gone, Schmidt's still in Single A. I don't smell a rush. And I've heard his velocity's been getting up there.

    Frankly, the way Penny has been pitching, I could see Kershaw staying and Penny phantom-DL'd and replaced by Schmidt for a spell. Just some idle thoughts for your Tuesday morning.

    2008-05-27 09:20:25
    22.   Jon Weisman
    15 - The point of a rehab start is to rehab. Stats are beside the point. So getting worked up over the fact that he allowed runs seems like wasted energy.

    Do the Dodgers want Schmidt in their rotation? Of course. What do you expect them to do - ban him from rehab?

    2008-05-27 09:20:30
    23.   Bob Timmermann
    18
    I did in the last thread.
    2008-05-27 09:32:40
    24.   fiddlestick
    Game of inches and feet.

    Billingsley misses his spot by a few inches and Lee hits it out.

    Fukudome lunges at the carom on Kemp's double and snares it. Another inch or two away and Hu scores the tying run.

    Loney goes from hero to goat by a few feet foul.

    2008-05-27 09:41:59
    25.   underdog
    Underdog's Memorial Day vacation reading progress: Finished Richard Price's "Lush Life," which is excellent and a must for "Wire" fans who are in withdrawal. And read half of "Moneyball," finally (probably the last person here to read that one), and all of "Glory of Their Times," both as part of my long baseball book must-read checklist. Also skimmed Field Guide to Pacific Coast Birds, as part of our birdwatchin' weekend. I had plenty of egrets about the past few days.
    2008-05-27 09:43:48
    26.   Eric Stephen
    25
    I had plenty of egrets about the past few days

    Your pun quality and quantity are hard to keep up with! Compared to you, I have but a paucity of puns.

    2008-05-27 09:45:55
    27.   JoeyP
    I think LaRoche could OPS higher than .814 against Lefties.
    2008-05-27 09:46:54
    28.   D4P
    We saw plenty of egrets on North Carolina's Outer Banks this past week. We also got to see the famous "wild horses of Corolla", which was a memorable experience. Apparently, egrets will sit on the horses backs during the summer months to eat flies.
    2008-05-27 09:48:58
    29.   old dodger fan
    14 Martin, Loney, Ethier and Kemp lead the Dodgers in PA's. Without the injury the top 5 would be those 4 plus Furcal. Now that Jones is gone what would you do differently than Torre is doing?

    Before you jump on the Pierre bandwagon please note that Pierre has the 6th highest OPS on our 25 man roster (excluding players with fewer than 20 PA's).

    I don't mean this to sound snippy. I really wonder what you (or anyone else for that matter) would do differently now on the non-pitching side.

    2008-05-27 09:53:25
    30.   Branch Rickey
    I was kind of annoyed my Torre's comments too. I don't know that it helps to ride your players for their performance but to excuse it for lack of experience seems worse. As a player, I'd rather my manager believe I have all the tools to succeed and that I just didn't. What Torre's suggesting isn't fixable.
    2008-05-27 09:55:37
    31.   regfairfield
    30 I think the issue is that Torre just has to say something. He can't just tell the media "these things will work themselves out" because he'll get called lazy. If he sticks to the cliches, no one can say a thing.
    2008-05-27 09:56:17
    32.   Xeifrank
    I think you have to call Schmidt's latest rehab start a success. No walks, no home runs and three strike-outs. From a DIPS standpoint, that's a good outing. Of course it's against Single-A players, but he did alright and didn't get hurt.

    Is Kershaw staying in the Dodgers rotation now? Or shortly heading back down to AA?

    I can't wait for Sweeney to get DFA'd. He is worse than Olmedo Saenz was in his last year with the Dodgers.

    vr, Xei

    2008-05-27 09:57:39
    33.   GMac In The 909
    29 I really wonder what you (or anyone else for that matter) would do differently now on the non-pitching side.

    For starters, I'd stop batting Kent in the cleanup spot.

    2008-05-27 09:57:49
    34.   underdog
    26 - Thanks; A friend of mine once sent me a belated birthday card that had a cartoon on the cover of two gangly birds ringing someone's doorbell with a note attached that read, "Your friend send his egrets," which is equally terrible but also made me laugh and forgive him for the belatedness. And 27 - Neat!
    Actually, it was the Great Blue Heron we saw wading in the waters at dusk right outside our place that really took my breath away. I don't think my pictures of it came out but it was amazing.

    Argh! Another Lakers-Dodgers conflict today. Better set Tivo and record the Lakers just in case.

    2008-05-27 09:59:52
    35.   Branch Rickey
    31. How about "we're just not getting the job done right now. These are good players and the hits will start falling for us".
    That's a pretty standard line. Saying they lack experience sounds like giving up on them.
    2008-05-27 10:00:51
    36.   GMac In The 909
    32 At this point, I'd take Norihiro Nakamura over Sweeney.
    2008-05-27 10:01:28
    37.   regfairfield
    33 And over the course of the year, you arguably gave the team one or two runs.

    Given our current roster construction, there's not much Torre can do right now but run out the best nine guys, which he's been pretty good at doing all things considered. So long as, sadly, our entire bench outside of Delwyn doesn't get used when the outcome of the game is in doubt, we'll be fine.

    2008-05-27 10:01:28
    38.   regfairfield
    33 And over the course of the year, you arguably gave the team one or two runs.

    Given our current roster construction, there's not much Torre can do right now but run out the best nine guys, which he's been pretty good at doing all things considered. So long as, sadly, our entire bench outside of Delwyn doesn't get used when the outcome of the game is in doubt, we'll be fine.

    2008-05-27 10:02:44
    39.   D4P
    35
    The biggest problem with Torre blaming inexperience is not that it's unfixable or that he's giving up on young players, but that inexperience is demonstrably NOT the problem in the first place.
    2008-05-27 10:03:24
    40.   regfairfield
    35 It could work, but that's just another way of saying "things will work themselves out". It seems like he's not doing anything if he says that.
    2008-05-27 10:04:12
    41.   underdog
    I would like to take this moment to say I was all for the Dodgers acquisition of Sweeney last season, even though it meant giving up a young player for him (maybe Denker will have a better career than I'm expecting him to have) and thought it was good to acquire a solid pinch hitter for the bench. So while I don't want to call him worthless in general, he is clearly done and am all in favor of dropping him as soon as possible. If they really need a veteran on the bench, there are better ones out there (and, heck, Terry Tiffee basically counts as a veteran right? I'd rather him than Sweeney), but most of the Dodgers youngsters will be a better bench player than he is right now. So, thanks Mark, for a nice career as a pinch hitter, but adios.
    2008-05-27 10:04:34
    42.   GMac In The 909
    38 ... we'll be fine.

    Unless, of course, a member of said bench ends up hitting fifth and taking the collar.

    2008-05-27 10:04:49
    43.   Bob Timmermann
    Nori's batting .307/.349/.503 for Chunichi this year. He has nine home runs.

    And he got rid of the mustache.

    2008-05-27 10:06:05
    44.   regfairfield
    42 True, but it's on Ned, not Torre than we don't have a backup for Loney.
    2008-05-27 10:06:46
    45.   Xeifrank
    43. In Japan is lining the ball into the first base dugout considered a hit? That's all I remember Nori being good at.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:08:01
    46.   Branch Rickey
    I have no problem with managers saying things to the press that aren't true or don't represent what they believe. Their first responsibility is to their players. I think Grady handled the press perfectly.
    2008-05-27 10:08:02
    47.   Bob Timmermann
    45
    I don't remember Nori doing anything other than hitting weak grounders.
    2008-05-27 10:08:10
    48.   silverwidow
    "The Boss" Jay Bruce makes his Reds debut tonight.

    Bold prediction: Future MVP and possibly HOF.

    2008-05-27 10:09:09
    49.   old dodger fan
    28 Beautiful place. I will be in Avon for a week in June.
    2008-05-27 10:10:00
    50.   Marty
    If it's the other team's dugout, then that could be a valuable skill.
    Show/Hide Comments 51-100
    2008-05-27 10:10:54
    51.   Xeifrank
    48. Who's playing time will Bruce replace? Just curious as I haven't been following the move.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:11:39
    52.   Bob Timmermann
    51
    I would short your Corey Patterson stock.
    2008-05-27 10:13:08
    53.   GMac In The 909
    44 The Dodgers should target Scott Hatteberg, if/when the Reds DFA the Pickin' Machine™. That should put a nice bow on the Mark Sweeney era.

    But since that would be a smart move, I don't think it would enter into NedCo's mind.

    2008-05-27 10:13:51
    54.   KG16
    38 - Kent should be out of the clean up spot. The higher in the batting order a player is, the more plate appearances he gets in a game. Kent's line does not warrant him getting extra PAs.
    2008-05-27 10:14:42
    55.   D4P
    49
    First time I had been to the Outer Banks. It was great.
    2008-05-27 10:16:07
    56.   Xeifrank
    54. True but it's not going to make that much of a difference, runs scored wise.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:17:01
    57.   sweepstakes
    Scmidt won't come back as a starter unless someone goes down. Does anyone think he'd flat out displace Kershaw?
    2008-05-27 10:23:56
    58.   KG16
    56 - ok, excuse my ignorance, but how does it not make much of a difference?

    In theory, the clean up hitter is the guy most likely to have runners on base when he comes to bat. And having runners on base makes it easier to score (for example, a runner on third with less than two outs requires the hitter to make contact; a runner on second requires the hitter to get a base hit; extra base hit required for runner on first; no runners on, home run). So, having a guy with Kent's line batting in the spot where he is most likely to have runners on base, suggests to me that it is more than a marginally bad thing.

    2008-05-27 10:27:25
    59.   Xeifrank
    58. Because people much smarter than you and I have said so. :)
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:29:47
    60.   dzzrtRatt
    Torre's "inexperience" quotes sound exactly, word for word, like what Wes Parker said on KABC a week ago Sunday. He said he was going to hang around and try to help the hitters deal with their lack of experience in RISP situations.

    I think some are reading it the wrong way, however. I don't think he means, "They're inexperienced, which means they suck, so we should replace them with PVLs." I think he means, "They'll get better with more experience, so don't worry about them." In other words, I don't think his intent is very far off from what Jon says in his post.

    Jim Tracy and Ned Colletti together have made us flinch when we hear certain words. But "you get better at what you do with more experience" is a homily, kind of like "early to bed, early to rise..." It's undeniably true in almost any situation, but not particularly insightful as to this specific situation.

    When you have to do interviews 162+ times a year, you get good at mouthing these sorts of things. At least he didn't compare any of the Dodgers to RFK.

    2008-05-27 10:30:17
    61.   Howard Fox
    57 hmmm...good question...$47 million...couple hundred thousand with options...$47 million...couple hundred thousand with options...tough call...Clayton, see you soon...
    2008-05-27 10:30:52
    62.   D4P
    In theory, the clean up hitter is the guy most likely to have runners on base when he comes to bat

    But that's only true if managers put high OBP guys in the 1-3 spots, which they don't necessarily do. Most of them put slappy, speedy guys in the 1-2 spots, whether or not they actually get on base an awful lot.

    But to answer your question, many simulations have apparently been run that show that scoring runs depends mostly upon who is in the lineup, and much less upon the batting order. That being said, there's still no excuse for putting together a bad lineup.

    2008-05-27 10:32:02
    63.   silverwidow
    61 No. If Schmidt comes back healthy enough to start, Kershaw goes to the bullpen.

    You think they're going to send Clayton to Vegas? I don't think so.

    2008-05-27 10:37:21
    64.   Howard Fox
    my guess would be he goes back to AA
    2008-05-27 10:37:41
    65.   Jon Weisman
    Farewell, Earle Hagen, "the Emmy Award-winning television composer who wrote the memorable theme music for "The Andy Griffith Show," "The Dick Van Dyke Show," "I Spy" and other classic TV programs."

    http://tinyurl.com/4p28nq

    2008-05-27 10:39:00
    66.   Bob Timmermann
    65
    Well, now, take down your fishin' pole and meet me at The Fishin' Hole,
    We may not get a bite all day, but don't you rush away.

    What a great place to rest your bones and mighty fine for skippin' stones,
    You'll feel fresh as a lemonade, a-settin' in the shade.

    Whether it's hot, whether it's cool, oh what a spot for whistlin' like a fool.

    What a fine day to take a stroll and wander by The Fishin' Hole,
    I can't think of a better way to pass the time o' day.

    We'll have no need to call the roll when we get to The Fishin' Hole,
    There'll be you, me, and Old Dog Trey, to doodle time away.

    If we don't hook a perch or bass, we'll cool our toes in dewy grass,
    Or else pull up a weed to chaw, and maybe set and jaw.

    Hangin' around, takin' our ease, watchin' that hound a-scratchin' at his fleas.

    Come on, take down your fishin' pole and meet me at The Fishin' Hole,
    I can't think of a better way to pass the time o' day.

    2008-05-27 10:42:31
    67.   silverwidow
    64 Typically, when players are promoted from Double-A, they don't go back there.
    2008-05-27 10:42:42
    68.   Kevin P
    Per yesterday's mini discussion:

    Loney- .274 AVG, .765 OPS, 5 HR, 29 RBI, 2 SB, .989 FPCT

    Teixeira- .267 AVG, .776 OPS, 5 HR, 31 RBI, 0 SB, .996 FPCT

    Loney is 4 years younger than Teixeira and millions of dollars cheaper. I believe it was Joey P advocating the signing of Teixeira and the benching and/or trading of Loney. I think that's a really bad idea but I wouldn't put it past Ned to make some big changes to our infield next season; particularly if we don't have a big year this year. Scary.

    2008-05-27 10:44:18
    69.   bhsportsguy
    Schmidt will finish his rehab assignment on June 10th.

    That does not mean the Dodgers have to take him off the disabled list.

    But he can no longer do anymore minor league appearances, he can do bullpens and simulated games at the major league level.

    Schmidt can probably make 3 more starts and then the Dodgers will have to decide if he needs more time.

    2008-05-27 10:47:48
    70.   bhsportsguy
    I resisted posting my semi-regular comment about how the Dodgers have not made a panic move (okay except Juan Pierre) in Ned's time as GM.

    The Dodgers resisted trades all last year and in the off-season.

    However, I'll add this, there have been comments about lack of power on this team, would you deal Billingsley or Kershaw for it.

    Because that is what I would ask for.

    2008-05-27 10:50:31
    71.   KG16
    62 - thus my qualifier "in theory".

    The notion that batting order doesn't matter seems counter-intuitive to me, regardless of what the simulations say.

    2008-05-27 10:50:43
    72.   Xeifrank
    70. I'd say Kershaw is off limits. For Billingsley, I'd want one of the top power hitting second basemen. Otherwise, no thanks, what we have is good enough.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:52:41
    73.   D4P
    The notion that batting order doesn't matter seems counter-intuitive to me, regardless of what the simulations say

    I suspect it's counterintuitive to pretty much everyone. It's not that batting order doesn't matter, it's that it doesn't matter very much, and not nearly as much as who's in the lineup.

    All of which is not to say that managers shouldn't put the lineup together the "right" way.

    2008-05-27 10:53:51
    74.   Howard Fox
    I'd keep Billingsley, Kershaw, Meloan, Broxton, and McDonald and go with the theory that good pitching beats good hitting.
    2008-05-27 10:53:54
    75.   Lexinthedena
    70 I would not deal Billingsly or Kershaw under any circumstances. Brad Penny has some value, and Jonathan Broxton has even more. I would trade one of those guys for power, but not the two building blocks. Billingsly and Kershaw will be the best 1,2 combo in baseball by 2010.
    2008-05-27 10:54:11
    76.   Kevin P
    Also... I can't wait for the removal of Sweeney and the return of LaRoche. At this point, I'll take LaRoche on the team in any capacity. If it means he's the back up to first and third while also providing patient pinch hit at-bats, I'll take it! Just get him here!!
    2008-05-27 10:55:17
    77.   rockmrete
    "scoring runs depends mostly upon who is in the lineup, and much less upon the batting order"

    Kind of a nobrainer, If I had 8 Pujos. Problem is we have pierre, hu, Maza, Kent, and until recently Jones.

    I would send Hu down and bring up LaRoache, play Maza until Furcal returns. I would start LaRoache in LF, and would move Kent down in the order. Martin would lead off.

    2008-05-27 10:55:28
    78.   Vaudeville Villain
    70

    Not to pick a nit, but wasn't the Julio Lugo thing a panic move? What about the Jason Schmidt signing?

    2008-05-27 10:56:12
    79.   Xeifrank
    71. It does matter, just not very much. It's far more important to be playing the best players on a consistent basis than to make minor changes to the batting order. Studies have shown there isn't a whole lot to gain in making a change from moving a player like Jeff Kent from 4th to something like 6th in the lineup. If you are talking about the difference between batting your pitcher first and someone like Hu 2nd versus batting them 8th and 9th, then you have more of an argument. There are small gains that can be made through lineup construction, but they are very small. You MIGHT be able to squeeze out something close to one win per year or about 1/16th of a run per game.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 10:58:11
    80.   Howard Fox
    79 and the proof of that is the St Louis lineup with the pitcher batting 8th
    2008-05-27 10:59:26
    81.   Branch Rickey
    70. I would not. Unless the "power" was say, Manny Ramirez. I mean jeez, we signed Andruw Jones for power. What if we had traded Bills or Kershaw for that? Very young very good starting pitchers are better than just about anything. We have power on this team, it's just not producing.
    2008-05-27 10:59:35
    82.   Lexinthedena
    I am happy with the idea of Laroche taking at bats away from Pierre, and Kent...though I hope he doesn't turn Loney into a platoon player.
    2008-05-27 11:01:10
    83.   gibsonhobbs88
    64, 67 - I'd rather they send him to double or Triple A then mess with his arm and put him in the bullpen, differenet mindset and use of your pitcher. Are they going to mess with this kid, start, then relieve then stretch him to start and ruin his arm. If they give him the 2-3 starts and decide to brink Schmidt back, I'd rather they send Kershaw maybe to Triple AAA to continue working on starts every five days. My first preference though is of course, if he's performing well, why mess with his confidence and send him down? It makes no sense. Another case of the "Old Establishment", "The Man" keeping a young man from reaching his full potential. The Dodgers could have found their Crown Jewel for this generation, but the old guys with their fixation on PVL guys will screw it up.
    2008-05-27 11:01:58
    84.   bhsportsguy
    78 Well, was the Greg Maddux deal a panic move, I think it was more replacing Izzy with Lugo and Maddux gave us some very important starts down the stretch and Lugo, well he did end up netting us two draft picks (Withrow, Adkins) without for now, costing us much.
    2008-05-27 11:03:02
    85.   bhsportsguy
    BTW, anyone notice that Chad Tracy is now back on the D-Backs, his presence will cost both Conor Jackson and Mark Reynolds some starts.
    2008-05-27 11:04:19
    86.   dzzrtRatt
    If LaRoche can exceed James' power while matching his OPS, and assuming DeWitt is for real, then it makes sense to let LaRoche compete for both positions.

    I think what this really means is the Dodger brass agrees the lack of power is killing us. They see Kemp as the only sustained power source on the horizon, except possibly for LaRoche. So they want to get him in there, even if it means moving Loney in a trade.

    However, before that would be considered, it has to be shown that DeWitt is a long-term Solution at third, and not just a Fimple in the night.

    2008-05-27 11:06:15
    87.   regfairfield
    68 Of course, Teixiera has been an elite player prior to the last two months, which is pretty important.

    79 Plus there's research that suggests you should put a weaker hitter higher in the order so you don't have a bunch of automatic outs at the end of the lineup.

    2008-05-27 11:09:15
    88.   Jon Weisman
    86 - Is there any reason to think that DeWitt is going to be better than Loney going forward? It's not as if Loney hasn't had a torrid month (or more). It was way back in ought-seven.
    2008-05-27 11:10:26
    89.   Jon Weisman
    88 - Basically, if Kent isn't in this conversation, I don't much care about the conversation. And I say that while understanding BH's point that so far, neither DeWitt or LaRoche has played second base in recent history or ever, respectively.
    2008-05-27 11:14:49
    90.   Branch Rickey
    Just to re-state a point Jon has made in the past, if Jones if going to finish the year with 1 home run, we're in trouble and should be. If you're biggest player give you zero production, you lose. You look towards next year but you don't make panic moves to replace him this year.
    2008-05-27 11:15:07
    91.   LogikReader
    It's really hard to believe the Dodgers are dead last in the NL in home runs. I really thought Loney, Kemp, Martin, and Ethier would be hitting more of them by now. Could we have overvalued their power potential?
    2008-05-27 11:16:02
    92.   Branch Rickey
    90. I guess that wasn't ALL a restatement of a point Jon made... just the part about needing Jones to produce and so giving him as much time as it takes.
    2008-05-27 11:17:03
    93.   regfairfield
    91 I don't think we did. Their one or two home runs away from being on the 20 home run pace most of us had them down for.

    Power trends up as the weather warms up once that happens, all those guys will be in the 15-20 home run range.

    I do think the people who had Kemp down for 35 jacks this year were being a bit overzealous.

    2008-05-27 11:18:01
    94.   Bluebleeder87
    81

    Pretty much how I feel

    2008-05-27 11:18:03
    95.   LoneStar7
    86 its frustrating that he has to compete in positions where our biggest concerns don't lie. Theres no way to fix it, considering Juan wont be replaced by a rookie infielder, especially when raffy is out, and we know LaRoche cant or wont play second.

    So basically we're not going to improve our team by bringing up LaRoche right now...considering he'll be fighting to replace people that put up similar numbers..

    2008-05-27 11:18:35
    96.   Howard Fox
    91 I think it's more that we have a lot of singles and doubles hitters, not power hitters, even though we envision these young players as such.

    Even though we, and the Dodger brass, want a team built on pitching, defense and 3-run homers, this isn't the team for that. If our defense holds up, we are much closer to the model of the teams of the 60s than those of the 70s.

    2008-05-27 11:18:44
    97.   Branch Rickey
    91. Right. We don't have a big home run guy but we do have enough 20 home run types that we should be fine for power. We're just not so far. Actually, we have a big home run guy too. Bottom line is that we have a good team, it just lacks experience and growth. Hey! Joe Torre was right!
    2008-05-27 11:20:05
    98.   Vaudeville Villain
    I'm not really surprised by the lack of power, to be honest. Even Kemp has never had huge power numbers in the minor leagues.

    To give Ned a small amount of credit, I think he diagnosed this team's major weakness properly, power, he just flopped in the execution. (Andruw Jones) Also, the lack of power thing is kind of his fault, anyway. Signing Juan Pierre is certainly not going to help you in that respect.

    2008-05-27 11:20:28
    99.   silverwidow
    83 I disagree. Kershaw could follow Schmidt on a five-day rotation out of the bullpen, which would help limit his innings and still be on a schedule somewhat.

    Trust me, you don't want him in Vegas during the summer (Arena Baseball, for lack of a better term).

    2008-05-27 11:21:10
    100.   gibsonhobbs88
    83 - I mean Old guys as in thinking old Ned and Torre. I'm surprised Torre would say that comment considering it's the veterans that have broken down, are injured and have fallen off the production mountain. On Sunday, the 10th inning, you had Sweeney up with the tie breaking runner on 2nd- and he was caught looking-striking out leaving it up to Andre Ethier who delivered the game winning hit. Which one had the more experience Torre? Which one delivered? This "Old line" thinking keeps getting in the way of the Dodgers progressing. It is very frustrating.
    Show/Hide Comments 101-150
    2008-05-27 11:21:14
    101.   LoneStar7
    The problem with a singles hitting team, which we are, is that everyone has to be playing well at the same time, which we are not currently...and therefore losing...but I think we'll hit a stretch of better production soon..i hope..
    2008-05-27 11:22:02
    102.   bhsportsguy
    89 And I will add again that I would love to see either of those two play 2B especially if the Dodgers lose Furcal next year.
    2008-05-27 11:25:01
    103.   Branch Rickey
    I believe Furcal would accept 3 years/50M. Would you offer him that right now? I would run to sign that contract if I were GM.
    2008-05-27 11:25:38
    104.   LoneStar7
    102 wouldn't we all, and isn't this the discussion every week...that neither have the skill or desire to play 2B..I hardly get it myself.

    This may be a terrible way of looking at it, but i feel like a team should bring up its best players and find ways to get them all int he game at the same time.

    Even if you get adventurous fielding situations like Soriano in left field (as an example) the cubs want to have their best players on the field at all times...

    2008-05-27 11:27:05
    105.   underdog
    Is nobody else excited about the Dodgers' debut of Danny Ardoin? If I were him I'd be excited, too, because he has to be thinking "I can't look worse than Gary Bennett."
    2008-05-27 11:27:13
    106.   Howard Fox
    103 you are kidding, right?

    the last thing we need is to increase the salaries on our DL

    2008-05-27 11:28:30
    107.   gibsonhobbs88
    99 - My concern is that they start using Kershaw for just an inning or two every other dayand get happy with that use for a motnth or two then want to stretch him back into being a starter again in September again. All of a sudden, he ends up with a ligament tear or a rotator cuff injury because they kept contracting and expanding his use within the season. Don't mess with the Minotaur!!
    2008-05-27 11:28:53
    108.   Kevin P
    91 I agree with 93 and think they'll come.

    I have an idea... Didn't I once hear that Lasorda had conversations with Garvey in which he asked him to reach back for more power and hit more home runs? How about have the same conversation with a couple of our guys? I'd choose Loney and Ethier. They both make good contact...

    2008-05-27 11:29:31
    109.   JoeyP
    68.

    Teixeira is much more proven than Loney, even when comparing their ages.

    Teixeira at 24:(2004) season
    .281/.370/.560
    38Hrs 112 RBIS

    Teixeira at 25: (2005) season
    .301/.379/.575
    43HRS 144 RBIs

    Teixeira at 26: (2006) season
    .282/.371/.514
    33HRs 110 RBIS

    Teixeira at 27: (2007) season
    .300/.400/.550
    30HRs 105 RBIs

    Does anyone honestly believe Loney will put up better numbers between ages (24-27), than Teixeira will from 28-31?

    Loney no doubt is cheaper.
    But to pass up a player that is as proven, and is still clearly in their prime like Teixeira is a risk that I wouldnt take. If the Dodgers can find funds to shell out for Druw, Schmidt, Nomar, etc...they have to take a look and think about signing a guy that is at least still in his 20s...

    2008-05-27 11:29:49
    110.   D4P
    I consider it almost inevitable that Furcal will make more money in the next few years than he will be worth based on his performance during those years.
    2008-05-27 11:30:51
    111.   Branch Rickey
    106. No, not kidding. I don't think his back will keep him down the next 3.5 years. It's not like he's a pitcher with an arm injury.
    2008-05-27 11:31:41
    112.   Kevin P
    I'd like to add to my last statement: I'm not so naive to believe that more power will come by simply asking for it. :)
    2008-05-27 11:32:32
    113.   Marty
    112 Kinda like ponies.
    2008-05-27 11:34:06
    114.   wronghanded
    I have to respectfully disagree with the "experts" in regards to the whole batting order debate. You can crunch numbers all you want in simulators but their is an independant variable to the entire situation--the opposing pitcher. You can't tell me that if Manny Ramirez were a leadoff hitter and David Ortiz were a 6 hitter that they would be pitched the same way they are when hitting back to back. Pitchers keep stock of where they're at in a batting order and pitch accordingly. The best hitters in a line-up should be stacked up back to back otherwise a team isn't maximizing their run scoring potential IMO.
    2008-05-27 11:34:07
    115.   Eric Enders
    I would be very surprised if Andruw Jones finished the season with only one homer given that he already has two.

    The Dodgers brass has zero basis for bemoaning a lack of power, given that the biggest power boost they could have gotten --- even bigger than replacing Loney with Teixeira -- was within their grasp every day. This, of course, was playing an 18-homer guy (Ethier) over a zero-homer guy (Pierre).

    Since Ethier's playing all the time now, they could get a similar boost in power by playing a 15-18 homer guy (Pee Wee) over a zero-homer guy in left field. At third base, they could also replace a 10-15 homer guy with a 20-25 homer guy (not that they really need to do that right now).

    The Dodgers' supposed power deficiency is a problem entirely of their own making, and solvable with players already on the 40-man roster.

    2008-05-27 11:35:28
    116.   bhsportsguy
    Currently, the top 4 Dodgers leading the team in total plate appearances have less than 2 years experience (MLB service time). After tonight's game, it will be 5 out of the top 7.

    By any calculation, the Dodgers are a pretty young team, perhaps not as young as some would like but I don't think I can recall a team starting so many young players since the early '70s.

    2008-05-27 11:35:59
    117.   Branch Rickey
    108. That conversation has been had with Ethier. He tends to get an overspin on the ball that keeps him from getting the lift necessary to hit home runs. He's worked on that with varying success but it might just be a result of his natural mechanics.
    2008-05-27 11:36:32
    118.   Mike De Leon
    70. There have been several panic moves by ned. Nomar was a panic signing after Drew opted out, Hendrickson I'd consider panic move, unless you actually think he couldn't have gotten more than a mediocre pitcher for what he gave up. AJ and JP I'd also call panic moves, Kemp has always shown he could handle CF and so makes those 2 unnecessary.

    If Torre thinks that the team is too agressive at the plate then whose fault is that? He's the manager and responsible, at least in part. He's supposed to get them to do the things that are going to make the team successful. If they aren't then he's, if not completely at fault, then at least culpable. Continuing to bat Kent 4th and giving AJ AB's, before he went on the DL, and starting JP over Ethier, before AJ's knee injury, isn't what I'd call putting the team in a position to do that.

    2008-05-27 11:36:39
    119.   underdog
    The problem is Furcal will want far more than 3 years and that's definitely too long. It's obvious this month how much the guy means to the Dodgers, but as he gets older these nagging injury issues will likely only get more, er, nagging. I'd do the 3 in a hearbeat, even if you know you have to write off some of that, because we're losing Kent next season (and it appears we may have lost him this season actually) but 4, 5, 6 years, Furcal will get something more like that and it's too risky.
    2008-05-27 11:37:14
    120.   Branch Rickey
    115. The way Jones has been swinging, anything is possible.
    2008-05-27 11:37:42
    121.   bhsportsguy
    115 Its the fans who bemoan lack of power, from the very beginning of the season, Torre has expressed publically that this team will not hit a lot of home runs.
    2008-05-27 11:38:39
    122.   Branch Rickey
    119. I agree which is why I would rush to sign him to a 3-year. I believe he'd accept it this year but I also agree he'll get 5 years on the open market.
    2008-05-27 11:38:50
    123.   Ken Noe
    105 I'm looking forward to seeing Ardoin. If he can return the ball to Kuroda without injuring him, or without much of an arc, I say DFA Bennett ASAP.
    2008-05-27 11:39:50
    124.   JoeyP
    Kemp's HR per season:

    2003--1 in 159Abs
    2004--18 in 460 Abs
    2005--27 in 418 Abs
    2006--17 in 535 Abs
    2007--14 in 453 Abs
    2008--3 in 155 Abs

    2008-05-27 11:40:06
    125.   bhsportsguy
    118 To me a panic move is trading one of the core young players for a veteran player. That is what people fear and have feared since Ned became GM.
    2008-05-27 11:41:31
    126.   Kevin P
    109 Those are certainly devastating numbers and I don't think Loney will match those. I guess my reasons for being so opposed to such a move stems from my own desire to see our farm produce a winning team and my belief that we're on the verge. I'm not opposed to free agents, I'm just opposed to a free agent taking the position from one of our own where it's not needed. For example, I was for the Jones signing because I thought it meant we'd get rid of Pierre. Next season, I'm looking at 2nd base and shortstop (though the FA market looks pretty weak in those areas, maybe minus O. Hudson). Also, it seems like we ALWAYS get burned on these big signings. Our track record is lousy!
    2008-05-27 11:41:41
    127.   Eric Enders
    109 The Loney hate is going so overboard that it's comical, Joey, and becoming difficult to take seriously.

    Teixeira's 29-32 seasons will probably be better than Loney's 25-28 sseasons, but that's no guarantee. I'd say there's maybe a 60 percent chance Teixeira will be better over those years. And if he is, it'll probably be by a fairly small margin. The marginal improvement of signing Teixeira would not be worth the vast monetary commitment that would have a chance of handicapping every other move the Dodgers seek to make in the next six years. And the notion that he can be signed for anything less than 6 years, $100 mil is a pipe dream.

    First base is not the position that needs to be fixed right now. In fact, it's the one that least needs to be fixed, except for catcher and right field.

    2008-05-27 11:43:05
    128.   Xeifrank
    109. Might want to note what stadium Teixeira put those numbers up in. :)
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 11:44:02
    129.   LoneStar7
    127 I think he's the only one taking that argument seriously anymore, I don't mean to sound rude, obviously I'm a big fan of Loney, maybe in the same we he is of Mark...but like you say, it really makes no sense..
    2008-05-27 11:45:37
    130.   Eric Enders
    125 BH, your larger point -- that Ned hasn't made as many panic moves as people think he has, or feared he would -- is well-taken. But there's simply no way to legitimately argue that Lugo, Nomar part deux, and Pierre weren't panic moves. Your argument becomes more legitimate if you'd simply concede those examples and tell us why they don't necessarily constitute a pattern.
    2008-05-27 11:45:51
    131.   fanerman
    Of course Teixeira is better, but by how much and at what cost?

    Unless Jeff Kent wakes up soon, second base is the area where the most improvement can occur via a personnel change (cough Dewitt to 2B cough).

    2008-05-27 11:46:51
    132.   Eric Stephen
    109
    Don't forget the bulk of those years for Tex were in Texas.

    Teixeira by OPS+
    Age 23: 102
    Age 24: 131
    Age 25: 144
    Age 26: 126
    Age 27: 150

    Given that Loney produced a 131 OPS+ in his age 23 season last year, and that he has a career 120 OPS+ right now (Tex's career is at 129), it's not unreasonable at all to expect Loney to produce similar numbers. Given the (monetary) cost involved, I think it's too much to spend for what might be a minimal upgrade.

    2008-05-27 11:48:51
    133.   Kevin P
    You're always solid Eric Enders.
    2008-05-27 11:50:48
    134.   Marty
    Pierre was certainly a panic move, since that was right after Drew opted out. I think that's why he offered 5 years.
    2008-05-27 11:51:04
    135.   JoeyP
    Here's Loney's HR per season:
    2002--5Hrs in 237Abs
    2003--7Hrs in 468 Abs
    2004--4Hrs in 395 Abs
    2005--11Hrs in 504 Abs
    2006--12Hrs in 468 Abs
    2007--16Hrs in 577 Abs
    2008--5Hrs in 173 Abs

    I dont think Loney's going to morph into the 30+HR guy that Teixeira is. At least, I wouldnt gamble that he will.

    2008-05-27 11:51:09
    136.   regfairfield
    129 It really comes down to which one of these moves is the best for the team:

    Teixiera for Loney
    Furcal/Hudson/Ellis for Abreu/Hu
    Dunn/Burrell for (realistically) Ethier
    Sabathia/Sheets for Schmidt/McDonald

    The Dodgers have a budget of 25-30 million for the offseason, and they need to spend their free agent dollars where it will most help the team. Of the choices here, I think Furcal for Abreu and Sabathia for Schmidt/McDonald make more sense than Teixiera, but I wouldn't be upset if we got him.

    2008-05-27 11:53:43
    137.   old dodger fan
    Signing Loaiza looked like a panic move to me. Probably Wells too but far cheaper.
    2008-05-27 11:53:49
    138.   Vaudeville Villain
    The difference between Loney and Teixeira is too marginal for the money.

    The problems with this team are as follows right now:

    1) Anywhere Juan Pierre plays.
    2) The bench kind of sucks.
    3) 2nd base.

    Things could be worse.

    2008-05-27 11:53:49
    139.   kinbote
    {taking a brief break from my all-morning reading of previous threads to say:}

    "Children of Men" is a modern masterpiece. I know tastes in movies vary, but I feel pretty confident in asserting that.

    {back to reading. good stuff, all.}

    2008-05-27 11:53:53
    140.   Eric Enders
    I know Dusty hates Adam Dunn and all, but do you really think we could get him for Ethier? I'd do that in a heartbeat.
    2008-05-27 11:56:02
    141.   Xeifrank
    136. When you say
    Dunn/Burrell for (realistically) Ethier
    - are you saying in this example that we'd sign either Dunn or Burrell on the FA market and that Ethier would be blocked? or traded?
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 11:57:59
    142.   underdog
    I don't think Loiaza was a panic move as much as a desperate move which made some sense at the time. The Dodgers had so many injury problems and inconsistencies in pitching late last season that I understood that one. It's too bad his deal extended into this season, but I wouldn't call that one a panic move.

    139 I agree. Disturbing as heck, but brilliant. I own that DVD, just to re-watch a couple of those long tracking sequences!

    2008-05-27 11:58:02
    143.   Xeifrank
    140. Dunn is an awful outfielder. I'm not crazy about having him on my team at all if his position is OF. He has DH written all over him, especially when he starts his decline years. vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 11:58:16
    144.   regfairfield
    141 Yeah, that's what I meant.
    2008-05-27 12:00:07
    145.   JoeyP
    128--

    2007--16 road Hrs, 14 home HRs
    2006--21 road Hrs, 12 home HRs
    2005--13 road Hrs, 30 Home HRs
    2004--20 road HRs, 18 Home HRs
    2003--7 road HRs, 19 Home HRs

    2008-05-27 12:00:35
    146.   Eric Enders
    143 I don't disagree on Dunn's defense, but 40 HR and 100 walks makes up for a lot of singles turned into doubles.
    2008-05-27 12:00:50
    147.   Xeifrank
    144. Ok. Just that there is a difference between blocked and traded. If traded we can get something in return, if blocked... So in the first case it could be something like
    Burrell+Prospect for Ethier. Burrell would be the FA signee and the prospect would be what we got for Ethier.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 12:00:50
    148.   bhsportsguy
    130 I'll concede that Nomar and Pierre were panic moves but the Lugo move was made because he did know that Kent was going to come back as soon as he did. Lugo was going to play second base but once Kent came back, it was rotation time with Betemit at 3B.

    Other than reupping Nomar and signing Pierre, his other FA signings could be seen as either stop gaps for one season (Wolf, Gonzalez) or hopeful upgrades and avoiding trading young players for vets (Schmidt, Jones, Kuroda).

    I would wait to make a deal until the off-season, I just saw a note in Baseball America that Elbert could be ready to go at AA in June, he's been throwing 92-95 right now, still taking some anti-inflamatories.

    With Elbert, McDonald, May, DeJesus, Jr. the Dodgers should have some talent available to go the trade route if they choose to in the fall.

    2008-05-27 12:00:51
    149.   regfairfield
    At least according to PECOTA in 2009 (so mainly for entertainment purposes), we'd get more by replacing McDonald with Sabathia than we would by making any other two of those moves.
    2008-05-27 12:01:51
    150.   regfairfield
    147 This is true, but you also have to knock off two draft picks and a lot of money on the free agent side.
    Show/Hide Comments 151-200
    2008-05-27 12:02:19
    151.   Xeifrank
    146. Or outs turned into doubles. :)
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 12:03:32
    152.   D4P
    I have to think that

    Dunn's Offense - Pierre's Offense >>> Pierre's Defense - Dunn's Defense

    2008-05-27 12:03:42
    153.   Xeifrank
    150. You should do a write-up on that topic sometime. It's interesting.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 12:05:34
    154.   kinbote
    142 I knew I liked you. There are [at least] three separate continuous shots in that movie that are mind-boggling:

    1. The scene in the car with the ping-pong ball, the flaming wreck, and the gunfire.

    2. The birth scene [sorry for the spoiler].

    3. The blood-on-the-camera-lens sequence toward the end.

    {i'm seriously going to back to my reading now.}

    BTW, is there a DT term for reading previous comments while trying to keep track of the current discussion? I think I'm losing the battle!

    2008-05-27 12:05:37
    155.   Eric Enders
    This surprises me and I don't necessarily expect it to continue, but in neutral ballparks, Loney has been a far, far better career hitter than Teixeira:

    Teixeira OPS
    Home: .941
    Road: .860

    Loney OPS
    Home: .809
    Road: .936

    2008-05-27 12:06:07
    156.   underdog
    Oh man. How sad.

    RIP director/actor/producer Sidney Pollack. :-(

    2008-05-27 12:07:01
    157.   D4P
    156
    It was even sadder yesterday...
    2008-05-27 12:08:43
    158.   Eric Stephen
    156
    I really liked the "turn off your cell phone" pre-movie ad with him.
    2008-05-27 12:09:12
    159.   Eric Enders
    148 "I'll concede that Nomar and Pierre were panic moves but the Lugo move was made because he did know that Kent was going to come back as soon as he did."

    The way you describe it seems to me to be the very definition of a panic move: Trading for a (thought to be) premium player to play a position which he doesn't actually play, so he can serve as a relatively short-term injury replacement.

    2008-05-27 12:10:38
    160.   Jon Weisman
    154 - kinboting? Since "underdogging" already means something else, despite 156 .
    2008-05-27 12:11:44
    161.   scareduck
    134 - not only was it right after Drew, but IIRC the Dodgers lost out on the Gary Matthews, Jr. "sweepstakes" as well. (Both were in fact signed on the same day, so I could be wrong, but I do seem to remember some talk that the reverse had happened.) The free agency pool at CF was pretty thin in 2006/7, so they waved a bunch of money at a bad one and unsurprisingly lost.
    2008-05-27 12:13:08
    162.   Kevin P
    156 Yeah, it sure is. I didn't hear about him until this morning on 790am on my way to work. I loved that guy. So great.
    2008-05-27 12:13:40
    163.   regfairfield
    161 At least it could have been worse then.
    2008-05-27 12:14:13
    164.   scareduck
    161 - "lost" = ended up with the "winner's curse".
    2008-05-27 12:16:05
    165.   Eric Enders
    The Giants were our nearest competitors for Pierre. If they'd gotten him, that sure would have been sweet.

    Where would Rowand have signed then?

    2008-05-27 12:23:16
    166.   underdog
    Hah. I already lost the battle. I tried to read through all the comments I missed this weekend, including yesterday after coming home, but, you know, had some other pressing things to do, too. I took a few of the threads to bed with me but drifted off somewhere around comment 466 of Monday's thread.

    Thankfully, I think I only "underdogged" once, though it was a doozy, so I was hoping that term would be reserved for something else. How about, making too many bad puns?

    --
    Speaking of the Giants, I know these things all even out, but there's something about the Dodgers having to play at Chicago and the Mets this week while the Dbacks play the Giants at home that makes me whine a little like a puppy.

    2008-05-27 12:25:22
    167.   bhsportsguy
    Can I ask in all seriousness, I know he did not play as well as we would have liked but I have never understood why there is such disgust over the trade for Julio Lugo. I mean did he cost the team games and only Lugo and Jeff Weaver being offered arbitration have resulted in draft picks in the last 3 years.

    Maybe its the idea of trading for him I guess but that move just has never bothered me like the other moves.

    2008-05-27 12:25:29
    168.   Bob Timmermann
    166
    Haven't you noticed that the Mets are not playing well? They lost two of three in Colorado, including one game when the Rockies were starting a bunch of guys who should have had "Colorado Springs" on their uniforms.

    The Mets are down to just one starting outfielder in Beltran. Left is manned by Nick Evans and right by Endy Chavez.

    2008-05-27 12:26:26
    169.   LogikReader
    168

    As long as Penny doesn't start, the Mets series should be all right.

    2008-05-27 12:27:11
    170.   Bob Timmermann
    I'd also like to announce that I'm going to Orlando for the NBA Pre-Draft Camp, but I'm only going to go get measured.

    I stand 6'5", but I play like I'm 5'6".

    What would be worse to see, the NBA Pre-Draft Camp or the NFL Scouting Combine?

    2008-05-27 12:28:29
    171.   underdog
    168/169 - Both true enough, but I still would rather play the Giants at home than play at New York.

    Still, if Kershaw is indeed starting again, in that series, that alone makes me extremely excited. Kershaw + Kuo in one game. Fuhgedaboutit, Mets.

    Btw, sorry if I missed this, but are we officially no longer calling him the Minotaur, since he seems to exist now? Or is there still fear of jinxing...

    2008-05-27 12:33:04
    172.   Eric Enders
    167 I'm not saying the Lugo trade turned out to be a complete disaster, just that it was clearly a panic move. In judging whether something was a panic move, I don't think the later results of the move are relevant in any way -- just the causes.

    At this point I'd rather have Withrow and Adkins than Guzman and Pedroia, so I guess in that sense the trade worked out well. Just don't try to convince me that reaping draft picks was the benefit Ned had in mind when he made the trade.

    2008-05-27 12:35:12
    173.   jasonungar07
    All this how we are a .500 team nonsense sounds so much better when Torre says it vs when Grady was saying it. So we got that going for us.
    2008-05-27 12:35:23
    174.   Vaudeville Villain
    167

    Lugo was totally unecessary because we had Tony Abreu to play second if Kent really was hurt.

    Plus, Lugo had a ridiculously productive first half that season, and it was like buying a stock right before it dips and becomes useless. We bought as high on Lugo as we possibly could, and got stuck with his inevitable regression to the mean. Yeah, we got some draft picks out of it, but I don't really think that was quite what Ned was looking for in that trade.

    It was an interesting window into Ned's style as well, as it showed us how easily he is duped by completely unsustainable success. I believe the Hendrickson deal came that same season.

    2008-05-27 12:36:12
    175.   trainwreck
    170
    I've seen both (thank you NFL Network and NBA TV) and the combine is far worse. At least they play some actual basketball at the camp.

    BTW, if you're really 6'5" that means you measure at 6'7" in basketball terms.

    2008-05-27 12:36:49
    176.   KG16
    wow, back to back twilight/night games at Wrigley? I didn't realize that they did that nowadays.
    2008-05-27 12:37:18
    177.   regfairfield
    174 Abreu had a .735 OPS in AA that year.
    2008-05-27 12:38:54
    178.   Vaudeville Villain
    177

    So? We didn't need for him to play very long.

    2008-05-27 12:40:28
    179.   trainwreck
    Dodgers got to realize if they want players that are just going to stink, we might as well go with our own stinky players.
    2008-05-27 12:40:37
    180.   underdog
    175 - Why did that remind me of this?

    Chick Hearn: "He's 6-5, with the afro 6'9". 4 Million dollars a year, sure, but he's worth every penny. Fletch, he defines grace under pressure."

    2008-05-27 12:40:40
    181.   old dodger fan
    This year in games in which we scored less than 3 runs we are 0-16.

    In games we scored 3, 4 or 5 runs we are 10-8.

    Games we scored 6 or more runs we are 16-0.

    It's pretty simple. We just need to score 6 runs.

    2008-05-27 12:44:58
    182.   regfairfield
    181 A good strategy for most teams. You win most games where you score five runs and you lose most when you only score four.
    2008-05-27 12:45:21
    183.   Howard Fox
    181 we have over the past few days
    2008-05-27 12:46:00
    184.   Bumsrap
    29 - I would simply say to Martin, Loney, Kemp, Ethier that they will be better players in a few more years, that they know it and I know it. In the mean time you are the core of this team and are good enough to carry this team. Therefore, you will be hitting somewhere in the top five spots starting today.

    And, I would add Kuo to the rotation and tell Kershaw, Billingsley, and Kuo they were the heart of the rotation.

    2008-05-27 12:46:09
    185.   trainwreck
    Oooooo. The Broncos just signed Michael Pittman.

    That will help them with the average size of the team's biceps.

    2008-05-27 12:48:33
    186.   Eric Enders
    That 0-16 in games where we score fewer than three runs is horrible. Usually good pitching enables you to win at least a few of those. Last year, for instance, the Dodgers were 8-42 in those games.
    2008-05-27 12:49:53
    187.   old dodger fan
    In the past 4 games we have scored zero or one run 3 times and lost all three.

    We scored at least 2 runs in each of the ten previous games.

    Don't panic.

    2008-05-27 12:52:56
    188.   jasonungar07
    What Torre should say is I wish we had some vets who we could put in the center of the lineup who were hitting the crap out of the ball to help take pressure of young players as they develop.

    He should say I wish I had at least one veteran arm at the top of the roatation to lead the staff but I don't.

    And somewhere, Grady will smile.

    2008-05-27 12:53:09
    189.   underdog
    185 - Where'd you hear that? Well, how exciting! Just more training camp fodder, methinks.
    2008-05-27 12:56:19
    190.   trainwreck
    189
    I saw it on ticker. Did you read about Selvin Young saying he wants 2,000 yards this year?
    2008-05-27 12:59:03
    191.   underdog
    190 - 2,000 all purpose? :-) No, he won't even do that, but I bet he's capable of coming close. The boy can motor but he's not going to be an every down back. Watch out for ASU RB Ryan Torain as a kinda sleeper for them this year though.
    2008-05-27 13:03:20
    192.   Alex41592
    ITD:

    Pierre, LF

    Maza, SS

    Ethier, RF

    Kent, 2B

    Loney, 1B

    Kemp, CF

    DeWitt, 3B

    Ardoin, C

    Kuroda, P

    2008-05-27 13:04:42
    193.   fanerman
    What? A REAL day-off for Martin?
    2008-05-27 13:10:12
    194.   old dodger fan
    Ardoin catching? Maybe this is Torre's strategy to put LaRoche at 3B.
    2008-05-27 13:10:54
    195.   MollyKnight
    It's freezing in Chicago today. Great day for him to take off.
    2008-05-27 13:12:33
    196.   underdog
    194 We knew Martin would be off today since early yesterday, so Ardoin catching shouldn't be a big surprise, and as noted above he can't be any worse than Bennett. (Okay, you can blame me for jinxing it if he does.) What would be great is if LaRoche could play shortstop!
    2008-05-27 13:12:46
    197.   sweepstakes
    Man, it's frustrating to see JP at the top of the lineup everyday. The difference between Grady and Torre is the latter's realization that slappy can't play CF, plus a much higher annual salary.
    2008-05-27 13:13:28
    198.   Bluebleeder87
    Keep the ball DOWN Kuroda & you'll be fine, speacily your off-speed stuff.
    2008-05-27 13:14:43
    199.   sweepstakes
    I meant the only difference.
    2008-05-27 13:16:11
    200.   D4P
    The difference between Grady and Torre is the latter's realization that slappy can't play CF

    I'm not sure how much credit/blame I assign to Torre for that. Ned acquired Jones so that Pierre wouldn't play CF, and Torre has continued Ned's wish. It's not like Torre came in and moved Pierre on his own.

    Show/Hide Comments 201-250
    2008-05-27 13:16:40
    201.   Ken Noe
    194 195 Torre gave Martin the option of a day off Monday or Tuesday. He took Tuesday, perhaps after scanning the Weather Channel. Meanwhile I'm looking forward to Ardoin and perhaps the end of the high-arcing field mortar toss.
    2008-05-27 13:16:57
    202.   trainwreck
    LaRoche can play LF. Just stick him somewhere. I want to see him play.
    2008-05-27 13:17:11
    203.   Neal Pollack
    That Ardoin-Kuroda-Pierre-Maza lineup turnover is BRUTAL. We'd better be working Sean Gallagher hard 3-7.
    2008-05-27 13:18:18
    204.   sweepstakes
    200-- I should've said when Andruw doesn't play.
    2008-05-27 13:19:03
    205.   D4P
    Instead of the game, WGN is showing an hour of "America's Funniest Home Videos" followed by "Rocky II".
    2008-05-27 13:20:22
    206.   trainwreck
    205
    ESPN has the game.
    2008-05-27 13:21:50
    207.   D4P
    206
    Ah, so.
    2008-05-27 13:22:04
    208.   Eric Enders
    With only four good hitters in the Dodgers lineup (and that's counting DeWitt), the funniest home videos might actually be more entertaining and less painful to watch.
    2008-05-27 13:22:39
    209.   old dodger fan
    I have a meeting that usually lasts 2-3 hours that starts 5 minutes before the game starts. I hope to follow the game on my cell phone.
    2008-05-27 13:23:11
    210.   underdog
    Interesting piece in SF Chron today on the Giants playing the vets during their supposed "youth movement."

    http://tinyurl.com/6ja6hu

    2008-05-27 13:23:51
    211.   scareduck
    167 - Can I ask in all seriousness, I know he did not play as well as we would have liked but I have never understood why there is such disgust over the trade for Julio Lugo.

    You don't quite get there, but I think you come close to a point that I think is really important about that trade:

    1) It was seen at the time as giving up more farm parts for a veteran where it wasn't clear that the Dodgers were going to get any value on their end (picking up a shortstop so he could play second base?).
    2) Eroding the farm system for short-term gain is generally not a good strategy.
    3) The Edwin Jackson trade was still fairly large in the rear-view mirror, and the risks in that tempered all such dealings with the Rays, who appeared to get all the upside from that previous deal.

    In retrospect, I doubt it makes much difference (though the Jackson deal is looking worse with each 2008 start).

    2008-05-27 13:25:06
    212.   old dodger fan
    208 Oh ye of little faith. We will score 6 runs off Gallagher tonight.
    2008-05-27 13:25:12
    213.   Xeifrank
    205. The Dodgers flagship station will be airing a gameshow called "Name That Out".
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 13:26:13
    214.   Xeifrank
    209. We can have Bob text you if there are any catchers-interference plays. vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 13:26:34
    215.   underdog
    All the same, I'd be even more confident were the Dodgers facing that watermelon-smashing Gallagher instead.
    2008-05-27 13:28:36
    216.   trainwreck
    215
    I would prefer Liam Gallagher.

    Carson Daly: How are you feeling today, Liam?
    Liam Gallagher: God-like.

    2008-05-27 13:31:45
    217.   Penarol1916
    I had to drag my winter coat out of the closet for tonights game for this lineup? Oh boy. Hopefully the cold deters the usual stupid Cub "fans" from coming out to get drunk tonight I don't get bombarded with questions about who the Cubs are playing tonight.
    2008-05-27 13:33:10
    218.   Bob Timmermann
    214
    I have to work tonight.
    2008-05-27 13:33:21
    219.   bhsportsguy
    2008 Records by Runs Scored

    Arizona
    21-3 when scoring 5 or more runs
    8-18 (7-6 when scoring 4) scoring 4 runs or less

    Los Angeles
    21-3 when scoring 5 or more runs
    5-21 (0-16 when scoring 2 or less runs) when scoring 4 or less runs.

    If the Dodgers score 3 runs or more, they are 26-8.

    2008-05-27 13:51:35
    220.   Gagne55
    219 So the conclusion is that teams win more often the more that they score.
    2008-05-27 13:54:29
    221.   bhsportsguy
    220 Sometimes I just like to point out that the Dodgers are not that much different than their competition.
    2008-05-27 13:55:32
    222.   LogikReader
    208

    Hahahahaha, that's very funny. There's also the Lakers/Spurs game tonight. Please... pleeease win tonight, Lakers. If the Spurs meet the Celtics in the finals... I'd rather not even think about that!

    2008-05-27 13:56:45
    223.   Howard Fox
    even better, statistics have shown that if you score more runs than your opponents, you tend to win more than you lose...

    further, if your pitchers allow fewer runs than you score, you tend to win more than you lose...

    just trying to be helpful...

    2008-05-27 13:56:54
    224.   KG16
    220 - the key to winning is to score, preferably more than the other team
    2008-05-27 14:00:05
    225.   GobiasIndustries
    Toothpaste for Christmas! Too funny. Just like this sad lineup that we'll tread out there for today's game.
    2008-05-27 14:03:23
    226.   Paul S
    LaRoche at third, DeWitt at 2nd, release Nomar, put Kent on notice that he's the backup. What's wrong with that, except it takes a lot of guts to tell the vets? Is this not the best move for the team?
    2008-05-27 14:06:47
    227.   Jacob Burch
    226 DeWitt could not play second base beyond an emergency roll this year, and quite likely next year as well.
    2008-05-27 14:07:14
    228.   underdog
    Where should we send "Get Well, Soon, Raffy", cards to?
    2008-05-27 14:07:25
    229.   Howard Fox
    226 perfect, except that Kent will be worse in the clubhouse than he already is, and DeWitt isn't a second baseman, and Nomar is on the 60 day DL so why bother releasing him...other than that, its a good plan...
    2008-05-27 14:09:15
    230.   Eric Enders
    I think you give Kent until the All-Star break to prove he's not toast. But in the meantime, there's nothing wrong with starting DeWitt at second a couple of times a week.
    2008-05-27 14:10:31
    231.   sporky
    Nate Silver kind of agrees:

    >>Will (Los Angeles): What should the Dodgers do at third base?

    Nate Silver: Promote LaRoche, bench Kent, and move DeWitt to second base. That's the way you'd do it in Strat-O-Matic, at least.<<

    2008-05-27 14:10:33
    232.   Eric Enders
    227 You have absolutely no way of knowing that.
    2008-05-27 14:13:23
    233.   Howard Fox
    230 can I watch while you tell Kent that strategy?
    2008-05-27 14:13:27
    234.   fanerman
    I normally would think that if DeWitt couldn't play 2B before, he can't now.

    But (1) he seems to field 3B better than most thought, (2) he mentioned how he didn't focus as much on defense in the past as he does now, and (3) Torre seems willing to play people in positions most aren't (ie, Martin at 3B).

    2008-05-27 14:14:27
    235.   regfairfield
    PrOPS:

    Kemp: .749
    Kent: .737

    Just sayin'. (And I'm aware that Kemp should have a higher BABIP, Enders :))

    2008-05-27 14:14:31
    236.   fanerman
    233 There's a reason Torre is paid the big bucks.
    2008-05-27 14:15:23
    237.   Sushirabbit
    Why you gonna call me on my phone?
    2008-05-27 14:15:26
    238.   Howard Fox
    236 nobody gets paid THAT much
    2008-05-27 14:15:33
    239.   GMac In The 909
    234 (4) DeWitt logged 93 games at second in the minors, so it wouldn't be a stretch at all.
    2008-05-27 14:16:20
    240.   Gen3Blue
    Just scanning through but

    194 LOL the thought had crossed my mind

    197 I know that to Grady's credit he did eventually bat Pierre 8th in the line-up at least when Furcal could drag himself on the field. I would hope that Torre reaches this point earlier when Furcal comes back and he feels he has a lead-off hitter. I would think there is a point when a high OBP eclipses a speed guy who steals 60 of 80, and I wonder if Torre is versatile enough to recognize it.

    2008-05-27 14:18:23
    241.   Howard Fox
    240 depends a great deal on whether Torre follows trends and statistics or is at heart an old school traditional baseball man
    2008-05-27 14:19:26
    242.   Paul S
    DeWitt played 2nd full time in 2006.
    2008-05-27 14:20:30
    243.   underdog
    When Furcal returns, he will return to the leadoff spot and Pierre will leave the leadoff spot, guaranteed (or your money back).
    2008-05-27 14:28:33
    244.   Eric Enders
    Okay, those of you whose knees jerk whenever DeWitt-to-2B is mentioned: Do you actually have any knowledge at all that he can't play second base? Do you have anything other than assumptions to support the notion that he stopped playing second because he couldn't handle the position? Do you have any idea how abominably bad he would have to be defensively for him to not be worth playing there, given the alternatives? Do you know how highly unlikely it is that he'll be worse defensively than the guy we're playing there already? Has there been any actual analysis going on of how many runs DeWitt would allow with his glove, versus how many he'd add with his bat? (There is, after all, no such thing as a player who "can't handle" a position: it's always a matter of whether he's worth playing there, based on how much his defense hurts you combined with now much his offense helps. If you had Babe Ruth and you had to play him at second base, you'd do it, left-handed or not.)

    What exactly is the DeWitt-Can-Never-Be-a-Second-Baseman point of view based on? Nothing that I can see.

    I'm not guaranteeing the move would work. But this is the way baseball works: You try things. If they don't work, fine, then you try something else. But what possible justification is there for eliminating the possibility out of hand?

    2008-05-27 14:31:55
    245.   Fallout
    The question was asked, did we over value the youngsters? It seems to me that many on this site have always seen the grass greener down on the farm. A few months ago the answer was Hu...we can to afford to lose Furcal because we have Hu. Or, he can play 2nd in place of Kent. Now, that it is obvious that Hu is not the answer, it's back to keeping Furcal. Of course over the past 2 yrs its been been Kemp, Loney, and LaRoache are better than, you fill in the blanks. If they were only playing then we would have a team. DeWitt comes along and so far has done better than one could reasonably hope that LaRache could perform and it's like a disappointment to some because he's not the anointed one. Or they don't want the gift because he doesn't have the power potential of LaRoache.

    So, now that these guys are playing what has happened to the team? It's Pierre's fault that we aren't doing better. Yes, and it's also Jones and of course that guy with the mustache. Maybe my favorite is that it's Torre responsibility that the youngsters aren't patient at the plate when it was Torre who pointed out the problem.

    2008-05-27 14:33:00
    246.   Xeifrank
    244. I'm in the "I Have No Problem With This Idea" camp, but also believe it will never happen (this year) for PVL reasons.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 14:34:51
    247.   sporky
    244 I have a feeling you're going to need a macro for that.

    245 Unless the question is regarding Hu's ability to pitch, I don't think you can definitively say that "it is obvious that Hu is not the answer."

    2008-05-27 14:37:45
    248.   bhsportsguy
    244 I don't think I have ever said DeWitt can't play 2B, all I have said is that I would like to see some evidence that this something being considered outside of discussions here on DT.

    The Dodgers certainly did not keep it a secret when Nomar was taking grounders at SS a few weeks ago, so I'm sure if DeWitt was being considered for that type of move, we'd hear something about it.

    2008-05-27 14:38:42
    249.   Eric Enders
    Colletti was quoted last week as saying that the possibility might be considered.
    2008-05-27 14:39:02
    250.   regfairfield
    248 Other people (i.e. me) have said it which is probably what he's referring to. Enders knows my justifications, but he's doing a good job convincing me I'm wrong.
    Show/Hide Comments 251-300
    2008-05-27 14:39:05
    251.   KG16
    244 - I'm certainly not opposed to DeWitt to second, LaRoche to third. But then if I had my way, Jeff Kent would have been wearing a Yankees uniform instead of a Dodgers uniform the last 3 (or is it 4 now?) seasons.

    Torre has a history of moving guys around without much concern. He moved A-Rod to third when he was arguably a better short stop than Jeter; he moved Damon out of center; he moved Bernie Williams out of the field; he moved Giambi; and a few others, if I'm not mistaken.

    The only concern I have with moving players around is moving guys to second and short because of the need to turn a double play. I'm sure DeWitt (or LaRoche) could handle it, but that's definitely something that you don't have to worry about playing any other position on the field.

    And I'll be more than willing to be the guy to break the news to Kent. I just want a cool title like "bench coach" and $400,000 pro rated for the season.

    2008-05-27 14:39:44
    252.   Kevin Lewis
    As hard as it was to watch our offense yesterday (just unlucky), I must say, it was a joy to watch Chad pitch. Man, he was electric, and I am taking that as a big victory for us. The problem seems to be we have no one like Derrik Lee coming to the plate. That guy just screams power threat by his looks. I wish we had someone in the lineup that could be that guy.
    2008-05-27 14:40:15
    253.   fanerman
    We should just start a campaign to get Blake to start taking grounders at 2B on his own. We could bring signs to Dodger Stadium, send him questions on the Dodgers website, tell him his market value would be higher as a 2B than it is as a 3B.
    2008-05-27 14:41:26
    254.   D4P
    252
    Kemp screams power threat by his looks, but the screaming doesn't translate into HRs.
    2008-05-27 14:42:48
    255.   LogikReader
    253

    Dodger Stadium doesn't allow signs in the ballpark. I never got that. At first I was pretty angry to find out.

    Today, I think its a decent policy. Communist, but a decent policy. Why do people bring signs? To bring attention to themselves on TV. Plus, it blocks the view of guys behind them.

    2008-05-27 14:43:11
    256.   Howard Fox
    I am sure DeWitt will change his workout habits and career path based on our recommendations.
    2008-05-27 14:44:34
    257.   fanerman
    256 We gave him a nickname. He owes us.
    2008-05-27 14:45:35
    258.   Eric Enders
    "Maybe my favorite is that it's Torre responsibility that the youngsters aren't patient at the plate when it was Torre who pointed out the problem."

    The notion that this is even a problem isn't credible. The young players on the Dodgers have, as a group, displayed more patience at the plate than the old players have.

    2008-05-27 14:45:58
    259.   Disabled List
    Jeff Kent strikes me as one of those guys who would not take kindly to being benched. Making matters worse is that he would be replaced not just by a rookie, but a rookie who has hardly ever played that position before. Losing one's job to a hot prospect is one thing, and veterans (even PVLs) accept that. However, Kent was mulling retirement this winter, and he did not come back just to see himself get usurped by some green kid who can't even play the position.

    This may also partly explain why LaRoche is getting reps in at 1B instead of 2B.

    2008-05-27 14:46:47
    260.   regfairfield
    Just for fun to try to quantify what DeWitt to second means. If you assume that DeWitt and Kent will play at their PrOPS levels the rest of the way (.766 OPS for DeWitt, .737 for Kent) DeWitt will be worth about six runs more the rest of the way (this was eyeballed from VORP and is very approximate).

    For DeWitt to give that back defensively, he'd have to be eight plays or so worse Kent the rest of the season, so as long as he's not the worst second baseman in baseball, it'd be an improvement.

    2008-05-27 14:52:02
    261.   Xeifrank
    259. I think the two most likely scenarios for the DeWitt to 2B solution are...
    1) Kent getting injured.
    2) Kent getting traded (asks to be traded to contender upon learning of demotion).

    Other than these two scenarios, I just don't see it happening for more than a once a week type of thing. I'm not saying it's a bad idea, just unlikely to happen imho.
    vr, Xei

    2008-05-27 14:54:57
    262.   Howard Fox
    261 the dodgers may not be living up to our expectations, and they may be erratic and unpredictable, but they are a contender, both in the west and in the wild card...

    who would Kent want to go to? and who would need him?

    2008-05-27 14:56:14
    263.   fiddlestick
    Is there a free site where I could see how many players have gone 0-8 or worse in a game?
    2008-05-27 14:58:01
    264.   regfairfield
    263 Here you go:
    http://www.bb-ref.com/pi/shareit/mqA3
    2008-05-27 14:58:53
    265.   Xeifrank
    260. Fun excercise. WAR has the same 2 win positional adjustment for 2B and 3B, probably seperated by a fraction and rounded off for simplicity. But nonetheless, given the 2 win positional adjustment for each position, DeWitt would then probably get knocked down atleast a quarter of a win, more likely half a win for the move to 2B, based on how well he would actually play the position. This last part is a swag on my part as this should be the case for most players moving from 3B to 2B. DeWitt would still have to regress his offensive numbers by 1+ wins to be a worse option at 2B than Kent. vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 15:00:21
    266.   Xeifrank
    262. I am not saying logic is involved, just the likely scenarios. I probably should have worded it "another contender" instead of "a contender". Going from one contender to another contender was what I was trying to portray. :)
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 15:05:48
    267.   Xeifrank
    wow, John Shelby once went 0 for 10 in a 22 inning game vs Houston.
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 15:08:44
    268.   Eric Enders
    260 , 265 Thanks, that was interesting.
    2008-05-27 15:11:31
    269.   Jon Weisman
    Tony Jackson on Jason Schmidt:

    "He did allow three runs (two earned), but nobody cares about that. His velocity topped out at 91, and Joe Torre said today that it might be into next year before Schmidt hits his old, pre-surgery velocity."

    http://www.insidesocal.com/dodgers/2008/05/injury-updates.html

    2008-05-27 15:12:26
    270.   fiddlestick
    264 Thanks
    2008-05-27 15:13:21
    271.   D4P
    269
    D4P said today that Schmidt might never hit his old, pre-surgery velocity.

    Who's to say.

    2008-05-27 15:16:05
    272.   underdog
    I'm not sure anyone here expected Schmidt to hit his top speeds in velocity after surgery, at least not this year. That would be pretty amazing. Being in the 90s and able to mix speeds and locations effectively are the most we could probably have expected.
    2008-05-27 15:19:00
    273.   Eric Enders
    If I recall, his velocity last year before surgery also topped out around 91, although it was more often in the mid-eighties.

    Whatever, it doesn't much matter. Jason, we've got a bullpen spot for you if you can keep it.

    2008-05-27 15:21:22
    274.   fiddlestick
    Would Schmidt accept a minor league assignment once his rehab time is over?
    2008-05-27 15:21:45
    275.   underdog
    273 What about the other Jason, Johnson! He's 6-2!

    Okay, maybe not.

    2008-05-27 15:24:17
    276.   Bluebleeder87
    I don't know, I'm on "wait & see mode" with Schmidt.
    2008-05-27 15:24:25
    277.   regfairfield
    We've already put Tiffee on the team, why not?
    2008-05-27 15:24:32
    278.   Ken Noe
    So if DeWitt or LaRoche aren't playing 2B next year, who is? A month ago I would have said Hu with Furcal back at short, but given Furcal's back now I'm not so certain. Depends on the deal, I think. If not, do they go after a second baseman with pop using Hu or LaRoche? Who is the MLB second base equivalent of Andy LaRoche?
    2008-05-27 15:25:38
    279.   Bluebleeder87
    It is truly is a bummer cause the Snakes are playing poor baseball lately, if only we could have gone on a hot streak.
    2008-05-27 15:25:39
    280.   underdog
    278 I don't know but IF the Dodgers do go the free agent route, the only one I like is Mark Ellis.
    2008-05-27 15:27:43
    281.   delias man
    280 Ellis is 31 next month, and Hudson is even older than that.

    Why do people keep saying Ellis around here?

    2008-05-27 15:28:02
    282.   Eric Enders
    Ellis is good, but he'll be 32 and his best baseball is certainly behind him. Plus, I'd rather not give our top draft choice to Billy Beane.
    2008-05-27 15:28:47
    283.   underdog
    Because 31 sounds really young compared to Kent! And because he's just a really solid player who is perennially underrated, imho. That's all. I would still prefer the Dodgers solve things in house but if they do go outside, I like him is all.
    2008-05-27 15:29:08
    284.   underdog
    Oh man, he's type A? Never mind! I agree.
    2008-05-27 15:29:26
    285.   fanerman
    Who is the MLB second base equivalent of Andy LaRoche?

    Hmm, a younger Jeff Kent?

    2008-05-27 15:31:23
    286.   delias man
    283 I agree with in-house. Andy has Kent's body type/size anyways. I see it being possible.
    2008-05-27 15:34:05
    287.   Howard Fox
    285 sometimes I am amazed at some of the posters here...

    sure LaRoche pencils out nicely based on his minor league progressions...but even mentioning him in the same sentence as a younger Jeff Kent...aren't we jumping the gun here? Kent has been consistently great for many years, and LaRoche has a lot of potential...those are the only "facts" we know of at this point...

    2008-05-27 15:35:41
    288.   silverwidow
    I have a feeling Ned is going to punt on somebody we like come July 31.

    The only guys off-limits are probably Martin, Bills, Broxton and Kershaw.

    2008-05-27 15:36:11
    289.   D4P
    ESPN Fan Poll:

    Which team is more likely to make the playoffs:

    Marlins: 52%
    Rays: 48%

    Baseball Prospectus PECOTA Adjusted Playoff Odds:

    Marlins: 7%
    Rays: 53%

    2008-05-27 15:38:45
    290.   Xeifrank
    289. Oh good, another opportunity for me to say Go Rays!
    vr, Xei
    2008-05-27 15:43:20
    291.   Im So Blue
    This just in, from Tony Jackson:
    Kent scratched from lineup

    Don't know why yet, but will update when I do. Here's the new lineup

    LF Pierre
    SS Maza
    RF Ethier
    1B Loney
    CF Kemp
    3B DeWitt
    2B Hu
    C Ardoin
    RH Kuroda

    2008-05-27 15:44:14
    292.   KG16
    Who is the MLB second base equivalent of Andy LaRoche?

    I'm going to go with either Andy LaRoche or Blake DeWitt.

    2008-05-27 15:44:24
    293.   jasonungar07
    Kersh, Bills, Brox, Kemp, Loney, Martin all else can be moved.
    2008-05-27 15:45:50
    294.   underdog
    291 - Yah, just saw that on Diamond Leung's blog, too. Normally, I'd be upset that Kent was scratched but given how he's been hitting, guess it doesn't matter as much. Still, that lineup can't be too intimidating to the Cubs. Ya never know, though!
    2008-05-27 15:45:59
    295.   KG16
    291 - 3-6, that line up doesn't look all that bad. What's the story on Ardoin?
    2008-05-27 15:46:44
    296.   D4P
    Kent "is suffering from lower-back spasms".
    2008-05-27 15:47:36
    297.   silverwidow
    291 I'm sure Hu is playing SS, Maza at 2B
    2008-05-27 15:47:41
    298.   KG16
    293 - I hold firm to my belief that the Dodgers will rue the day they trade Ethier. Rue, I say.

    I am also beginning to feel that way about DeWitt and LaRoche

    2008-05-27 15:47:59
    299.   Bluebleeder87
    This this lineup SCREAMS OUT beat us...
    2008-05-27 15:48:44
    300.   underdog
    295 - The Danny Ardoin Story:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danny_Ardoin
    Show/Hide Comments 301-350
    2008-05-27 15:49:10
    301.   fanerman
    287 I will take that as a compliment. I try to be amazing. I was sort of joking anyway. Honestly, I am amazed at how seriously people take things.

    Anyway, Jeff Kent's highest OPS+ for his ages 24 through 29 seasons was 111. Only when he went to SF did he proceed to go completely nuts.

    2008-05-27 15:50:39
    302.   Eric Stephen
    291
    Odd they chose to put Maza at SS over Hu. Maybe Torre is the one providing the "Hu isn't a SS" info to Vin Scully.
    2008-05-27 15:51:11
    303.   Gen3Blue
    241 243 Sorry I was gone so long but those remarks make sense. What it is though I think, if Furcal becomes the lead-off guy
    does Torre realize how terrible Pierre is as a no. 2 guy.( Though I realize he is a No. 2 guy). Sorry rule 1. By some thinking he is a good eight hitter, by the reasoning that he may be on base when the best hitters come up.
    2008-05-27 15:51:35
    304.   KG16
    296 - why do I have the feeling if we were all in the same room, we'd all be glancing around the room with smirks on our faces, not wanting to say the two letters that are on everyone's mind?
    2008-05-27 15:52:07
    305.   Indiana Jon
    293 I don't think Broxton should be in that category. He's good, but he's a relief pitcher. If we could get good value for him, I would trade him in a heartbeat for a second baseman.
    2008-05-27 15:52:38
    306.   KG16
    302 - game day has Maza at second, Hu at short
    2008-05-27 15:53:20
    307.   Jon Weisman
    NPUT

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