NLDS Opening Games, 2015

First game: Cubs at Cardinals, 3:30PM PT, TV: TBS

The Cubs and Cardinals have been rivals for decades, but this is the first time they’ll face one another in the postseason. As if that weren’t enough, the opposing pitchers once played together for the Red Sox.

John Lester (11-12, 3.34 ERA) starts for the Cubs, while John Lackey (13-10, 2.77 ERA) starts for the Cardinals. Lackey leads all active pitchers in two playoff categories: today will make his 19th playoff start and he’s already thrown 117 postseason innings. Lester has a 6-4 record with a 2.57 ERA in the postseason himself.

Further game notes here.

Second game: Mets at Dodgers, 6:30PM PT, TV: TBS

LHP Clayton Kershaw (16-7, 2.13 ERA) starts for the Dodgers. RHP Jacob deGrom (14-8, 2.54 ERA) starts for the Mets. Kershaw’s only blemish in his brilliant career is his 1-5 record and 5.12 ERA in the postseason. This will be deGrom’s first playoff appearance. He faced the Dodgers once this season and gave up two hits over 7 2/3 innings.

The Mets added Yoenis Cespedes, Juan Uribe and Kelly Johnson in mid-season and got David Wright back as well. “It’s a completely different lineup, not just Cespedes,” Kershaw said. “…a completely different team. Obviously, a lot better than what we faced in July.”

Dodgers’ playoff roster:

Lineup when available.

  • WBBsAs

    Cueto really tanking in KC. Before the deadline, I was mildly interested in acquiring him, but the Dodgers FO appears to have known better.

  • RBI

    Peralta. Yikes.

  • NLDS Preview from Sports Illustrated with attention to the slightly-misleading nature of Kershaw’s postseason losses (no run support: “Among the four postseason losses he has suffered over the last two seasons, two came by scores of 1–0 and 3–2.”)

    • Bob_Hendley

      Somehow, I am not consoled.

      • Well, read the whole thing. It’s not quite an apologia, but it does explain the circumstances (like an untrusted bullpen) to the non-Dodger fan.

        • Bob_Hendley

          I am certainly consoled by Clayton’s pitching, it’s the offense that I am offended by.

          • package206

            I would rather have KiKi hitting 8th right handed than Joc hitting at all.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Quique only at OPS+ 64 against righties.

  • WBBsAs

    We have a lineup:

    • Bumsrap

      I like this lineup. Seager hitting third is a pleasant surprise. Pederson in the lineup is good. I like Kendrick over Utley as well.

      • Bob_Hendley

        It suggests that they are not platooning with Utley.

        • Bumsrap

          Utley may have been one of the last to make the team.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Double switch bait and emergency 1st base, as far as I can tell. Would prefer Schebler.

          • Bumsrap

            Agree. Utley didn’t look good in his one at bat.

  • WinnipegDave

    Feeling excited and nervous. It seems like so much postseason action has already happened. Let’s get it on Dodgers.

    I’m out tonight until and will miss the first three innings or so. Look forward to checking in and chatting when I get back.

    • Audit

      Get some ice cream, celebration or consolation…

      • WBBsAs

        Or tequila. Or tequila ice cream.

        • Audit

          Wrong neighboring country.
          EDIT: Probably impossible anyway, the alcohol would lower the freezing point quite a bit.

          • Tequila ice cream? A ghastly thought.

          • WBBsAs

            I’ve had Bailey’s ice cream – sold in supermarkets here – and Cabernet and Torrontés and beer ice cream in Argentina.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Well known in Mexico. (more of an ice margarita)

  • Audit

    Does anyone here have experience with Linux?

  • Cards lead 1-0 after one.

  • WBBsAs

    Is Bill Lackey truly capable of pitching an interesting game?

    • package206

      Don’t you mean John Lackey?

      • RBI

        Not tonight.

        • package206

          I give up.

          • RBI

            On my way to the stadium. Meeting my son there. Woot woot!

      • WBBsAs

        You’re correct. Bill Lackey pitched briefly for the A’s in the 1890s. Bill Laskey was a Gnat in the 1980s.

  • Audit

    Still babysitting, even on the Internet.

    • package206

      I didn’t know you did babysitting Audit?

      • Audit

        Package, I think all of us are babysitting you and WBB on this site. I sometimes wonder what would happen if we could lock the both of you in a room all day.

        • RBI

          Probably a great conversation.

          • Audit

            My thoughts exactly. They would probably work it out.

        • package206

          Sorry, I was just kidding.

        • package206

          Hey Audit, I have had over 5 hours to think and rethink your response to a nothing comment. I was just kidding on my babysitting comment but I guess you and others felt it was justified. I did not do anything to cause it to be said but you and others felt otherwise. Doesn’t matter what WBB thinks about this comment as he didn’t do anything to justify it. I understand he dislikes me and that’s OK but you don’t need to speak for others. No one needs to babysit me and they can say what they want to. I wish in the future you would be honest and not speak for others as they are able to speak for themselves. I will never again feel that some folks speak the truth when it is obvious that they are not honest. So don’t hold back, jump on whenever you feel it is necessary. I don’t need babysitting.but thanks for your concern.

      • WBBsAs

        Apparently dogsitting.

  • RBI

    Ticket, check. ’88 championship t-shirt, check. Kershaw Cy Young pin, check. Butterflies? Check check check.

  • RBI

    Dodger dog, check.

    • WBBsAs

      You made it through the traffic?

      • RBI

        Yup. Wasn’t too bad. And I parked right on Sunset!

  • Blasted Cardinals. Up 4-0 in the 8th on two home runs, one by their Atmosphere and Energy Engineering graduate Piscotty.

  • So while watching the opening innings I’ll browse my copy of the SI NFL preview issue, which just arrived in the mail this week, four weeks into the season. It’s dated Sept 7. I have gotten three issues dated more recently than its issue date.

    I thought I’d be a wiseguy and wrote them a letter; we’ll see what they can think of to explain this.

    Maybe Kershaw will strike out the first six guys while I’m reading.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Takes a while for the Matsonia to make the trip.

      • I actually rode the Lurline from LA to HNL in July of 1968, just a year or two before Matson stopped sending passenger ships along that route. I was 17. Fortunately there were about a dozen other teenagers on board or I’d have gone mad.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Alright! Ready to go.

  • Bob_Hendley

    The first pitch thing that RBI was talking about (though in the case of the ‘Stros)

    • RBI

      I know. I saw that right away. Plus, get his count up.

  • WBBsAs

    One-pitch outs work for me, though.

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    C’mon, Kersh– double play!

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    NY’s plan has to be to get rid of Kersh and get to the bullpen ASAP. Hopefully not many more pitch count innings like that one.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Yet, at the same time they are going after the first pitch.

      • Bob_in_Vegas

        Good point.
        So maybe the plan is swing early (hope Kersh and AJ are aware of that) and the hope is wear him out.

        • Bob_Hendley

          Seems like the best strategy for them. Though Clayton will throw 120 pitches if he has to.

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    C’mon, bats!
    Unfortunately, no matter what the Dodgers do, we fans lose in the postseason without Vin. Speedy recovery to him!

  • de Grom is a star, let’s not forget. This could be a 2-1 game.

    • WBBsAs

      Big-time talent. Mets’ young pitching is very impressive.

      • package206

        Who told you?

        • WBBsAs

          Certainly not you.

          • package206

            Someone had to tell you.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Howie, ha!

  • Bob_Hendley

    2-0 pitch . Let’s go Agon!

  • 20 pitches for de Grom, 22 for Kershaw.

  • 11 pitches, including two Ks. How does he DO that?

  • Bob_Hendley

    Nice break. Found the weak spot defensively.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Dre needs to take this guy deep. (bad call)

  • package206

    RBI, are you going to give us the play by play or not?

    • RBI

      See above!

  • RBI

    Too busy watching. Stadium is electric!

    • package206

      Where are you. Upper deck? Are the fans around you electric?

    • TBS’s Ron Darling said he’s never heard Dodger Stadium this loud this early.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Pitch count mounting.

    • 45. The other guy struck out the first six (outs, anyway). We’ve already left three on base.

      • Bob_Hendley

        Gotta get’m on to leave’m on.

        • Well, yeah. All the lefties have struck out. Two of the three righties have gotten hits.

    • package206

      Don’t worry about my boy. He has his stuff!

      • Bob_Hendley

        deGrom is your boy?

        • package206

          C’mon Bob, ease up, OK?

          • Bob_Hendley

            Try to keep up.

          • package206

            SU

    • WBBsAs

      On pace for a 202.5-pitch CGSO.

      • package206

        Don’t worry WBB, my boy has his stuff!

        • WBBsAs

          You are a DeGrom fan, then.

          • package206

            C’mon WBB, you know Kersh is my boy.

  • RBI

    Curve ball not so sharp, but Kershaw’s other two pitches are fine.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Got a couple swings and misses on it, though.

      • package206

        Yea, erratic

        • Bob_Hendley

          Take it easy.

          • package206

            SU

    • RBI

      That last one was much sharper. Kershaw does get better as he goes along some games. This may be one of those.

  • RBI

    Ump is giving us heart attacks out here.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Seems just a little bit erratic, just to keep us on our toes.

      • RBI

        Took forever to call that SO.

      • package206

        Yea right, erratic.

  • RBI

    Okay. Top of the lineup. Time to score some RUNS!!!!

  • Bob_Hendley

    Another break.

  • WBBsAs

    Cuddyer continues to channel the ’62 Mets.

    • package206

      He is a liability on defense for the Mets.

      • WBBsAs

        Who told you?

        • package206

          Am I wrong?

          • WBBsAs

            Answer the question.

          • package206

            Did someone have to tell me? I think that is an easy one.

          • WBBsAs

            It might be the first time someone didn’t.

          • package206

            If someone did tell me, it wouldn’t be you.

          • WBBsAs

            Probably even Steiner could do so.

  • Seven strikeouts for de Grom.

  • He’s thrown 59 thru 3 innings, Kershaw’s thrown 51. Neither is going to pitch a complete game at this rate.

  • RBI

    Boo!!! I just went to the restroom and this happens!

  • Bob_Hendley

    Well, had to score at least one to win, now we just have to do it to tie.

    • package206

      There’s a revelation.

      • WBBsAs

        An explanation for your benefit.

      • Bob_Hendley

        Take it easy Package.

        • package206

          Not taken anymore stuff.

          • Bob_Hendley

            You actually seem to be giving it (stuff that is).

          • package206

            Not before I get it first.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Just cool it, OK.

          • package206

            You dish it out, take it.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Didn’t dish anything out to you.

      • foul tip

        #3

        • package206

          You must have answered the wrong commentor.

          • foul tip

            #11 ?

          • package206

            Please, that is a serious accusation.

          • foul tip

            You must have missed the question mark.

          • package206

            I did miss the question mark.

  • JonnyTAFKAJ

    What da ya say we give our boy, Clayton some help, ayyyy Fellas?…. 🙂

  • package206

    Another quaity AB from Pederson.

    • WBBsAs

      Another “quaity” comment from package. Not to mention both of Ethier’s.

      • JonnyTAFKAJ

        I had to give you both an “up” because I’m not sure if WBB is being snarky or sarcastic/funny. Truth be told, I should be able to tell by now…..

        Ahhhhh…. Perhaps the Playoffs are getting to me…. 🙂

  • Bob_Hendley

    Pitch count mounting (de Grom)

  • RBI

    Oh, man. So close to dropping in!!!!!

  • foul tip

    Would it be barely possible to drop the edginess and just enjoy a playoff game?

    This kind of stuff makes this blog far less enjoyable for me–and most likely others.

    • package206

      I didn’t start it but I will finish it.

      • foul tip

        So, no chance of rising above it?

        • package206

          Honestly, you don’t really think that some others will quit their constant baiting do you? I am sick of them getting a pass when they are the worst offenders.

          • foul tip

            Again I say:

            “This kind of stuff makes this blog far less enjoyable for me–and most likely others.”

          • package206

            Perhaps you should question some others.

  • Cool it, people. The game’s tense enough without the verbal fistfights.

  • RBI

    Kershaw better and better.

  • RBI

    10 Ks in 5 innings. Whoa.

  • JonnyTAFKAJ

    If our boys were to lose this game 1 – 0 ….

    My newspaper headline would be…

    ” One bad pitch call from AJ Ellis…… Dodgers down 0-1 In Series with Mets “

    • Bob_Hendley

      If we score zero, that should probably be the headline.

    • WBBsAs

      It would be “Offense fails to support Kershaw.”

    • JonnyTAFKAJ

      Totally agreed, you guys…. 🙂

      Just would be looking for a reaction from AJ.

  • RBI

    What a pitcher. Seriously.

  • RBI

    Up to the bats. Again. Maybe DeGrom will tire this inning. He’s thrown a lot of very hard fastballs, many inaccurately.

    • Bob_Hendley

      He seems to just be warming up!

  • WinnipegDave

    12 k’s now for Kershaw. Time to score 2 or 3 runs.

    • RBI

      11. But I agree!

      • WinnipegDave

        Yes. My mistake. Hold fast Dodgers and find a way to score a run.

  • RBI

    Not a good showing by the top three.

  • WinnipegDave

    Quick inning. Now time for the bats to awaken.

    • Audit

      Ever consider changing your Nome de Plume to Polyana?

      • WinnipegDave

        Hope springs eternal. Until it becomes bleak, dreary winter.

  • JonnyTAFKAJ

    Please tell me… (in terms of “regular season scrub – turned Dodger post season killer HR”)

    Daniel (does not Matt Adams (does equal) Matt Stairs
    Murphy equal)

    • Bob_Hendley

      We kill ourselves by not scoring.

      • JonnyTAFKAJ

        I used to say that to the fellas when we went out looking for girls on Saturday night…. 🙂

      • package206

        Pretty erratic I would say.

        • Bob_Hendley

          Whatever.

  • RBI

    Rule one violation. AGon crushed that foul ball, and it truly looked like it was a HR until the last minute.

  • WinnipegDave

    Why must it always be on such a razors edge? Why so tight and so tough to score runs?

    • Bob_Hendley

      It’s Dodgertown, Dave.

    • RBI

      I know. Stomach in knots.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Hadn’t really focused on that hesitation step by Clayton before. See it a lot with Japanese pitchers.

    • package206

      Which pitchers are you referring?

      • Bob_Hendley

        Nomo and Kuroda of the ones I have seen a lot.

  • RBI

    I literally can’t watch.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Tough call, but Clayton unable to put away those two hitters. (just wish it was someone else coming in)

  • package206

    Not sure if taking out Kersh for Baez would be the best situation?

    • WBBsAs

      Open to debate.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Not a popular move.

      • package206

        Just can’t trust a bullpen against a 30 million dollar pitcher.

        • WBBsAs

          Who was gassed, probably. He walked the bases loaded.

        • Bob_Hendley

          If you are going to do such a switch, you need to have someone better than Baez coming in.

          • package206

            True.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Just because its the 7th, doesn’t mean you bring in your 7th inning pitcher.

          • RBI

            Couldn’t agree more.

          • WBBsAs

            Báez is good, but is also inexperienced in such situations. I prefer him starting an inning.

          • package206

            Would you have pulled Kersh for Baez?

          • Bob_Hendley

            For me has to be Hatcher or Kenley in that situation.

          • package206

            Kenley, YES!

  • RBI

    And the bullpen folds yet again.

  • RBI

    Took the wind right out of the stadium’s sails.

  • JonnyTAFKAJ

    ……………………………………………………………………………………
    (If any other part of my comment included actual words, I’d violate every rule on the blog)
    Ha.

    • RBI

      Tell me about it.

  • WinnipegDave

    Ahhhhhrrrrrggggghhhh.

  • RBI

    As great as Kershaw is and was, he didn’t get it done.

    • package206

      Kersh is not fully accountable as maybe he would have gotten the out.

      • RBI

        It was walking the two that killed us, that inning.

        • WBBsAs

          He walked the bases loaded.

          • RBI

            Huh?

          • WBBsAs

            He walked Duda, Tejada and Granderson.

          • package206

            Oh ye of little faith.

          • WBBsAs

            Faith is useless. Empirical facts and results count.

        • package206

          True but I think a Hall of Fame pitcher might have gotten it done as opposed to Baez.

          • WBBsAs

            Not on the basis of what he had already done in the inning. He had nothing left.

          • package206

            Sometimes you have to go with the best possible situation and I would think that is a future HOFer, not a bullpen guy.

          • RBI

            At least Hatcher.

          • foul tip

            See last year’s playoff series v St. Louis for how well leaving in a tired and unraveling Kershaw can work out. He wasn’t going to throw a complete game and was walking people. Making a move was mandatory.

          • package206

            Guess that is one opinion. I still have faith in Kersh.

          • foul tip

            There’s no pitcher I’d rather have on the mound than Kershaw being Kershaw.

            But that inning Kershaw was not being Kershaw.

            I’d have gone with Hatcher over Baez tho, especially if I knew that Baez tends to struggle with the first batter he faces. If the TBS announcers knew that, DM surely did. Inexcusable if DM didn’t know.

      • WBBsAs

        On the basis what he proceeded, he probably would at least have walked in another run.

    • Bob_in_Vegas

      Neither did the bats. He shouldn’t have to pitch a shutout to hope for extras.
      I’m afraid he’s going to have the reputation as the Petyon Manning of baseball.

      • package206

        Ouch!

        • Bob_in_Vegas

          Of course, the QB is responsible for the offense in football. Kersh had one of the better ABs tonight, but the pitcher can’t get a W unless his own team scores.

      • WBBsAs

        Who’s that?

        • Bob_in_Vegas

          Phenomenal regular season quarterback for the Colts and Broncos (multiple winner of the NFL MVP), who has almost equally poor results in postseason . . . tho his team DID win one Super Bowl.

          • WBBsAs

            I know nothing about handegg, and care even less.

          • Bob_in_Vegas

            Answering cuz you asked.

          • WBBsAs

            If I’d known it was handegg, I wouldn’t have asked.

    • foul tip

      Who really hasn’t gotten it done is the offense. You have to tip your hat to deGrom at this point, but the Dodgers have had their chances and done nothing with them.

      • Bob_in_Vegas

        Not surprising . . . but still sad.

      • RBI

        Yes, that too. The whole thing hurts.

    • package206

      Don’t think was, and we will never know if he could have gotten it done.

      • WBBsAs

        Walking the bases loaded was no indicator he would have succeeded.

        • RBI

          Plus walking the first batter of the inning.

          • WBBsAs

            He failed against the bottom of the order.

          • package206

            Would you have given up on Koufax in the same situation?

          • WBBsAs

            If he had walked the bases loaded and was visibly tiring, yes.

          • package206

            I would have never given up on Koufax or Kershaw.

          • WBBsAs

            Until their arms fell off, presumably.

          • package206

            Say what you will.

          • foul tip

            Great as both were and are, both still are human and don’t win every time out.

            Which reminds of Yogi Berra after the ’63 WS Dodger sweep of his Yankees. He said he undersood how Koufax had won the 25. What he didn’t understand was how he lost the 5.

          • package206

            What a wonderful comment sincerely.

          • WBBsAs

            You would let them go nine in every game, even if they were walking the bases loaded and/or getting shelled. Strategic thinking, there.

  • WinnipegDave

    I really don’t recall the last time Chase Utley came up to bat and I thought, “oh good, Chase Utley is coming up to bat.”

    • RBI

      Exactly.

  • JonnyTAFKAJ

    Gotta ask…… LA Dodgers….. Can we feel a heart beat ?????????

    • WinnipegDave

      Feels more like Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart. Buried under the floor boards.

    • RBI

      Pretty grim here at the stadium.

      • Bob_Hendley

        Look alive out there!

        • RBI

          AGon! Yes! An RBI!

    • foul tip

      Jon W. has a series running on the ’65 WS winning Dodgers. Noted that Koufax and Drysdale lost the first two games, yet LA came back to win. Let’s hope Greinke wins tomorrow–tho this one isn’t over just yet.

      • Bob_in_Vegas

        Nice perspective — of course, that was best of 7. And I think their # 3 & 4 were better than today.

      • Bob_Hendley

        Seven games with Sandy pitching three of them.

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    C’mon, bats — no bottom of the 9th — let RBI (and everyone) get out early!

  • RBI

    We’re on the board!

    • Bob_Hendley

      Tying run at the plate.

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    At least it’s not a shutout . . . c’mon, JT!

  • WinnipegDave

    Bring home the bacon JT.

  • RBI

    Not lookin’ good.

  • WinnipegDave

    Woulda, shoulda, coulda have been 1-1.

    • Bob_in_Vegas

      7 (-th inning) is not a lucky number for Kersh in postseason.

      • RBI

        He looked a little gassed.

    • Bob_Hendley

      How so? (if you are wishing, why not make it 1-0?)

      • WinnipegDave

        The ball hit by Wright just missed being caught by Kendrick.

  • RBI

    And no Vin to ease the pain.

    • Bob_in_Vegas

      Things DO go down better with Vin.

    • package206

      No Vin is almost unbelievable.

  • RBI

    Need some 9th inning magic!!!!

  • WinnipegDave

    Ethier, Ellis and Peterson – or a few pinch hitters?

  • Bob_in_Vegas

    Round up the usual suspects: bats & bullpen (tho Kersh didn’t help his cause).

    • RBI

      DeGrom was lights out.

  • package206

    Pederson to keep the inning alive, What a joke.

    • WBBsAs

      Just like Ethier getting it started.

      • package206

        Yea, right.

        • WBBsAs

          Ethier set the tone from the second, when he failed to advance the runner from second with nobody out.

    • RBI

      We lost this in the seventh, sorry to say. And tip of the hat to DeGrom. He was lights out w RISP.

  • RBI

    They outplayed us, fair and square.

    • WinnipegDave

      Yep. That’s true.

  • WinnipegDave

    Win tomorrow. Win 1 game in NY. Win game 5. On to the NLCS.

    • package206

      Sounds easy, don’t it?

      • WinnipegDave

        Couldn’t be simpler.

        • Bob_in_Vegas

          Add offense and stir. No substitute allowed — baseball won’t let you score on defense.

  • Bob_Hendley

    Announcers noted Baez problems with first batter faced. OPS of .773. Not the luckiest fellow, however, with babip of .516!

  • RBI

    Ooph. Rough game. To me, it was Wright’s 12 pitch at bat, the one bad pitch to Murphey, and DeGrom’s dominance that made the difference. Mostly DeGrom.

    • package206

      I think the mistake was taking out Kershaw. If Kershaw gets the final out and the Dodgers tie the score it may have turned out differently.

      • If wishes were horses then beggars would ride. From what I can tell he was pretty beat, walking several light-hitting players he’d normally blow away.

        • package206

          Taking him out for Baez was not the best option in my opinion.

          • Bob_in_Vegas

            That’s a different question.
            Kenley would’ve been the best option, but how quickly can he warm up? I know I wasn’t thinking Kershaw had lost it until he walked the third one that inning. Unless Kersh faked an injury, I don’t think KJ could’ve been ready to come in.

          • package206

            It is up to Donnie to decide how to handle the pitchers. Kenley would have been a far better option but I still would have stayed with Kersh.

          • RBI

            Don’t forget it was 90+ degrees out. Clay really did look gassed in the seventh. That’s why Wright’s 11 pitch at bat and then drawing the walk was such a big deal.

          • WBBsAs

            Yes, we know, one reliever in the bullpen is sufficient. Mike Marshall’s 108 games and 208 innings in 1974 were just for wimps. Kenley should be able take over for every starter every night (even though all those starters should be throwing complete games every time out).

          • package206

            Have you ever thought of giving a response that is your response? It seems you always want to decide what others are thinking or so sarcastic they don’t deserve to be read. I guess this one is fact based as you say all of yours are.

          • WBBsAs

            I always thought four starters and one reliever should be enough to get any team through the season but, if your starters are good enough, you shouldn’t even need that reliever.

          • package206

            Very fact based.

          • WBBsAs

            I am merely following your lead.

          • package206

            I never said every comment I made was fact based. You did.

          • WBBsAs

            I would never say any comment you made was fact-based, because none ever is.

          • package206

            Likewise.

          • Bob_Hendley

            In the news conference he said that Hatch wasn’t under consideration for one out. Such is the mindset of relievers having their roles. Pretty universal thinking among managers.

          • WBBsAs

            Sadly, that is the case.

          • Howard Fox

            I am not a fan of DM, but he can only work with what he is given. If you have a lousy undependable bullpen, with no one guy you can turn to, then when the game is on the line as it was in the 7th inning, you get what you get regardless of who you bring in.

          • Bumsrap

            And for the second year in a row, no less, Baez relieves Kershaw to get similar results.

      • Bob_in_Vegas

        I’m sure Donnie flashed back to the exact situations last year, when he was second-guessed for leaving in Kersh, to disastrous results.
        I’m he wasn’t throwing in the towel, but perhaps it was as much to keep Kershaw from personally surrendering the runs (even tho they were credited against him). As has been mentioned here already, this was not the dominating Kershaw.

      • RBI

        Clay himself said in the post-game show that he didn’t fight that decision. “I put myself in that position,” he said. “DeGrom just out pitched me.”

      • WBBsAs
    • Bob_in_Vegas

      It was deja vu all over again with Wright’s AB and the MIA LA bats.
      The 3 walks in one inning, 4 in the game from Kershaw was a total surprise.

      • Howard Fox

        Seems to me that he was throwing more than pitching.

  • We outhit them but left 7 on base. We out-struckout them, but that’s not generally considered desirable. de Grom was a monster, and he beat Clayton at his own game. I can’t remember the last time Kershaw walked three guys in one inning, and it sure came back to bite him.

    • Bob_in_Vegas

      Hopefully they can find a way to beat a “quality” team . . . in two series after this one as well!

  • Howard Fox

    In talking with my friends last week, my greatest fear was Kershaw and Greinke pitching well, and the Bums losing 1-0 on unearned runs. Well, it wasn’t unearned, but just the same….

    Looking at the hitters, not sure where the spark will come from…they don’t seem to string together a bunch of hits, they certainly aren’t going to win any games with the long ball. Seeing them against good teams, they seem to remind me of the money ball A’s (yes, a very expensive version) as they seem to be built for the long haul of the season, but I don’t see 2-3 hitters who strike fear in opposing pitchers.

    On another note, maybe Kershaw gets a little too “up” for the playoffs…it takes him a couple innings to relax and settle in, burning a lot of pitches in the process. No idea if this is the case, or how to deal with that….it’s not really the number of pitches in my mind, it’s the effort expended.

    • Bob_Hendley

      Hard to imagine him being more intense than he already is for regular season games, but you are probably right. Donnie might be second guessed for not starting another left-hand bat in Grandal, as AJ despite his offensive surge is still dreadful against righties. No guarantees with Grandal however, given his ongoing slump. Not sure either that having a better pitch framer would have been helpful, as Clayton is a swing-and-miss guy in any event.

      • Howard Fox

        I personally like AJ, and he did get a hit last night. And I have never been a fan of the lefty righty matchup thing, unless that is all you have going for you…in which case you’ll probably lose anyway. The good hitters hit.

        • Bob_Hendley

          Grew up with Dodgers switch hitting infield and Earl’s O’s, so I appreciation for the approach. You may not want to construct your team that way but looking at splits for guys like Dre, SVS and Ruggs, the advantages in specific plate appearances are clear to me.

          • scooplew

            Although the Mets’ pitcher tonight, Syndergaard, is another righty, I’d start Puig, putting him in right and moving Ethier to left.

          • Bob_Hendley

            Sure, Puig’s splits are not too bad.

          • scooplew

            And Crawford was overmatched last night. Led off four innings, was hitless and fanned twice.

          • Bob_Hendley

            CC rarely looks good at the plate unless he is getting a hit.

          • Audit

            He has been over-matched for years. Do you think we could trade him to the Padres for Kemp back….

  • scooplew

    I came down from the Monterey Peninsula to visit my mother, who turns 95 next month, and attend last night’s game. Kershaw was one notch below his A plus level and had run out of gas in the 7th. Had he ever walked three batters in an inning before? deGrom was brilliant, but the season-long issues at the leadoff spot and middle relief helped doom us. Weather was hot and sticky. Rare unenjoyable weather at a Dodger Stadium game. Go get ’em Greinke!

  • Audit

    Some consolation for last night’s loss: Miami Marlins would like Mattingly to manage if he becomes available. http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/writer/jon-heyman/25332673/marlins-owner-loria-hoping-to-land-don-mattingly-if-he-becomes-available

  • Audit

    I can’t imagine anyone really being surprised by last night’s result. Disappointed, yes, surprised, no,it’s not like it hasn’t happened many times this year. I don’t see how Greinke can not opt out of his contract. And Clayton too, when his option comes up. And if I were a top tier free agent pitcher this off-season, I’d have to think mighty hard to sign a contract with the Dodgers if they don’t try to fix their hitting problem.

    • WBBsAs

      Of course Greinke will opt out, but he’s likely to return.

      • Audit

        Well, you’re half right, which is above average for you…

        • WBBsAs

          And you’re half-baked, which is above average for you.

          • package206

            Just because it doesn’t match your answer does not mean it does not have merit.

          • WBBsAs

            It’s tempting to say you’re lapsing into incoherence, but “still wallowing in” would be more accurate.

          • package206

            I just love to hear your stupid remarks. Anyone can see that you run down other people so you can make yourself look superior to you. A very sad situation for a head case.

          • WBBsAs

            Your solipsism is showing.

      • package206

        Another fact based answer.

  • WBBsAs and package, will you two guys please knock it off? The constant sniping annoys others, including me. It’s unnecessary and it’s devolved into “So’s your old man!” territory.

  • Audit

    Bob Timmermann, longtime Dodger Thoughts Contributor, has an interesting take on the playoffs. Maybe he’s right… http://bobtimmermann.tumblr.co

  • NPUT