Game 80, 2014

Dodgers at Royals, 5:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA

James Shields (8-3, 3.70 ERA) will pitch for the Royals, and Dan Haren (7-4, 3.62 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. Each guy has been hit with the home run bug recently. In Shields’ last game he gave up two dingers for four runs, while Haren had given up ten HRS in seven starts prior to his last one, and he didn’t improve. He gave up two to Seth Smith of the Padres that night.

History: In 267 career starts, Shields has never faced the Dodgers, while Haren owns a 5-2 record and a 2.77 ERA against the Royals in 11 career starts.

There’s no word yet on whether Hanley Ramirez’s shoulder will allow him to play.

Lineup when available.

83 thoughts on “Game 80, 2014

  1. DM gets roasted for some of his dubious moves, so he should get credit for a good strategic move using Wilson. His reason, from game story:

    “Closer Kenley Jansen had pitched on four of the previous five days, and Mattingly said to
    use him in this game meant he would be down the first two games of the Cardinals series at home.”

    Even if the outcome might have been different if SVS hadn’t made that sparkling play to end it.
    Game of inches, etc. “Don Mattingly played the right first baseman tonight — the tall one,” cracked A.J. Ellis.

    DM also correctly called a spade a spade, saying this was Haren’s first “dud” outing.

    Not to get overly greedy, but better production out of his rotation spot could mean an eventual Dodger division runaway, given how the other 4 have pitched.

    • I think that you are underestimating Haren’s performance and what he has given the team to date for a fifth. He has the same number of quality starts as Greinke and averages the same number of innings per game. Of course, love for him to do better (and Greinke for that matter as well).

      • Prob I see with Haren is more potential than urgent and involves his relative falloff after April plus the increasing number of dingers. Yes, he has done relatively well, but trends not so good….fewer bats missed and as many HRs allowed as Ks at least a couple times. Fine April, mediocre May and no real rebound this month, IIRC.

        Also handicapped by throwing most everything mid to maybe high 80s, making it easier for hitters to zero in.

        Just thinking team needs to watch him closely while hoping he can hold where he is, eat innings, and not turn into the proverbial pumpkin.

        Can’t overexpect from rotation backend, which really shouldn’t be expected to match the top 3–or top 4, counting how well Beckett has done. Beckett’s great comeback at supposedly #5 to Haren’s #4 makes it all the more glaring when Haren doesn’t measure up.

        Not directly related, but thought this on all the starters was very informative.
        Speaking of trends, they’re riding a great one:

  2. It was so close to being great, but a good road trip . . . now gotta keep winning at home!

  3. Line for the pen: 4 2/3 3 0 0 1 7

    Those are the kind of numbers that win titles….except you could hope for fewer bullpen IP. However, the starters have done very well lately and mostly have not left so much work undone.

    • Very small sample size, and Wilson pitched poorly but very luckily. Wright is probably now the third-best reliever after Kenley and Howell.

      • Yes to SSS. But pen has improved as starters have gone deeper and reduced relief load. Still, as long as Maholm and Perez are still in it, pen is vulnerable.

  4. Can’t argue with the result. But anyone with eyes or ears hear why no Kenley in his usual spot?

          • Great, I was kind of hoping for that sort of a double play (especially with the mixed emotions of the caught stealing changing with the successful challenge)

  5. Where would we be this year without Gordon? (and Puig for that matter)

  6. just saw some vision of Puig, that was incredible hustle on his triple and his throw home may have stopped the runner scoring if Ellis had not tried to half volley the ball (or Puig’s throw was just a bit higher)

  7. Not hard to think it’d be better if Wright became a starter and Haren long man. Think Wright has started in the past, and he continues to get the job done this year relieving. Haren hasn’t been awful, but his trends aren’t good and the long ball continues to hurt him.

    Some analysis talked about the Royals having no power. Coulda fooled Haren.

    Greinke got dinged for a long HR in game one, also.

    • Wright really hasn’t started since 2006 (21 times for the giants). KC also hard to K, but we have gottent them 9 times already.

      • Yeah. Unlikely Haren loses the spot less he gets considerably worse. Tho he may be working on that. If the Dodgers were going to make a change, they’d likely call up someone or maybe trade.

        Wright would take time to be stretched out, making him less likely.

        But his effectiveness v Haren’s mediocrity prompted the idea.

  8. a lead is a lead, no matter how small (another bases clearing double from Rojas would have been better however)

    • At the halfway point of season now. I doubt it, for various reasons. Unlikely to play every day, particularly, because of lefties.

  9. so far we have scored 0,1,2. I think we are due for 3 runs this time 🙂

  10. I don’t care so much that Lincecum got the no-hitter . . . but the Giants also won!

  11. At least Lincecum now thinks he is better than he really is and next time we face him, we will smash him all over the park

  12. Error in standings. Dodgers only 3 games behind, unless Lincescum can hang on to a 2-0 lead.

    • Hmm. Yeah, it didn’t pick up the Giants’ 32nd loss. Well, hopefully it will self-correct tonight (I don’t keypunch it; it’s a Word Press plug-in which updates around midnight).

  13. How about a more relaxing game for us fans? — Dodgers hit the homers, Haren don’t give ’em up. (NOTE: Tension is allowed if it means Haren is going for the trifecta!)
    Win the series then head back home and take the other MO team!