Apr 30

Game 32, 2019

Dodgers at Giants, 6:45 PM PDT, TV: NBCS Bay Area, SPNLA

RHP Walker Buehler (2-0, 5.25 ERA) takes the hill for the Dodgers, while his mound opponent will be LHP Drew Pomeranz (1-2, 3.65 ERA) of the Giants. Blue-gloved Buehler (see photo at link above) pitched 5 2/3 innings of good baseball his last time out but then hung a curve ball which Javy Baez hit for a three-run homer. Pomeranz went six scoreless innings against the Blue Jays in his last start.

Ken Gurnick of MLB.com has written an excellent story about the Dodgers’ pitching heritage, from Branch Rickey and the days of 26 farm clubs all the way up to Kershaw and Buehler today.

Beginning in 1940 (a span of almost 80 seasons), the Dodgers’ staff has ranked either first or second in the NL in ERA 40 times, including last year, when it ranked first. Pitching is the Dodgers’ brand.

Their pitchers have won 12 Cy Young Awards (no other team has more than seven), a string that started with the late Don Newcombe in the award’s inaugural season of 1956 and includes three plaques each for Koufax (‘63, ‘65, ‘66) and his protégé, Kershaw (‘11, ‘13, ‘14). The other five winners were Don Drysdale (‘62), Mike Marshall (‘74), Fernando Valenzuela (‘81), Hershiser (‘88), and Gagne (‘03).

Five additional Cy Youngs were won elsewhere by pitchers trained in the Dodgers’ farm system — three by Pedro Martinez (1997 NL, ‘99 AL, 2000 AL) and one each by Rick Sutcliffe (‘84 NL) and Bob Welch (‘90 AL).

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1940 The Dodgers tie the major league mark for consecutive wins from the beginning of the season with style as James ‘Tex’ Carleton no-hits the Reds, 3-0, for the team’s ninth straight victory since Opening Day.
  • 1944 In the first game of a doubleheader split, first baseman Phil Weintraub gets 11 RBIs, and player-manager Mel Ott scores six runs, drawing five walks in the Giants’ 26-8 rout of the Dodgers. Brooklyn wins the nightcap 5-4 in a game shortened due to darkness.
  • 1988 Dave Winfield ties the major league RBI record for April established by Dodger infielder Ron Cey in 1977 and matched by Dale Murphy of the Braves in 1985. The right fielder, who was on base at least once in every game, drives in his 28th and 29th runs of the month in the Yankees’ 15-3 rout of Texas in New York.

A.J. Pollock has an elbow infection and is likely headed to the IL. This is the same elbow he’s broken twice before, and it has a plate and screws in it.

Lineup when available.


Apr 29

Game 31, 2019

Dodgers at Giants, 6:45 PM PDT, TV: NBCS BA, SPNLA

RHP Kenta Maeda (3-2, 5.20 ERA) v. RHP Jeff Samardzija (2-1, 3.00 ERA). Maeda’s walks are up and strikeouts down compared to his career numbers, but the last eight guys he faced in a four-inning start against the Cubs last week went out meekly. Maeda is 4-3 with a 4.58 ERA against the Giants. Samardzija gave up two runs to the Blue Jays in 5 1/3 innings his last time out and got the win. He’s 1-4 with a 4.06 ERA against the Dodgers.

Here’s Muncy’s go-ahead RBI in the 7th inning of yesterday’s game:

On this day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1978 The Cardinals tie a franchise record for the quickest nine-inning game played in their history, taking only one-hour and thirty-three minutes to beat the Dodgers at Busch Stadium, 1-0. The contest marks the managerial debut of Ken Boyer, replacing Vern Rapp, the Redbird skipper fired four days ago.
  • 1994 Kirk Rueter becomes the first pitcher in 13 seasons to begin his major league career with a 10-0 record when the Expos beat San Diego at Olympic Stadium, 3-2. In 1981, Dodgers southpaw Fernando Valenzuela started the year with eight victories to improve his overall record to 10-0 for the Dodgers, somewhat similar to the Montreal left-hander, who started his streak last season with an 8-0 mark before winning his first two decisions this year.
  • 2005 Although Eric Gagne is on the disabled list and hasn’t thrown a pitch this season, he is suspended for two games and fined. The action is taken because after being ejected on April 6 for heckling home plate umpire Bill Hohn, MLB warned the Dodgers closer he was in violation of Rule 3.17, which states players on the disabled list may not take part in any activity during the game, the former Cy Young winner continued to dress and participate in game activities.

Here’s a terrifying note: on this day in 1930 (which should be called the Year of the Hitter — look it up) an average of 17+ runs a game is scored in the seven major league games played today. After the dust settles, players from 14 teams will cross the plate 123 times. On a sadder note, on this day in 1939 on a chilly Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium, Lou Gehrig comes to the plate in the fourth inning and singles off Washington hurler Ken Chase for his 2,721st and last hit, the most ever in franchise history. The ‘Iron Horse’s’ record will stand for over 70 years until Derek Jeter, another 35 year-old team captain, surpasses the mark in 2009.

Lineup when available.


Apr 28

Game 30, 2019

Pirates at Dodgers, 1:10 PM PDT, TV: ATT SportsNet-PIT, SPNLA

RHP Trevor Williams (1-1, 2.59 ERA) goes for the Pirates while LHP Rich Hill makes his first appearance of the season for the Dodgers. Williams is like Musgrove in that every start he’s made in 2019 has been a quality one, and in fact he’s got a 1.67 ERA for his last 18 starts. Hill strained a knee in Spring Training and has been rehabbing ever since. The Dodgers think he’s built up enough arm strength to go six innings. He’ll be pitching to Russell Martin, who’s coming off the IL after recovering from lower back inflammation. The Dodgers sent Rocky Gale back to OKC.

Kershaw thinks he’s Superman sometimes, and maybe he’s right:


Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1922 At Ebbets Field, Lee King drives in seven runs in the Phillies’ 10-7 win over the Robins. The Philadelphia outfielder will collect a total of only 15 RBIs this season playing with Philadelphia and the Giants.
  • 2012 Bryce Harper makes his much-anticipated debut in the Nationals’ 4-3 loss to Los Angeles at Chavez Ravine. The 19 year-old rookie center fielder, who drives in the potential go-ahead run in the ninth inning with a sacrifice fly, doubles in the top of the seventh off Chad Billingsley for his first major league hit.

Lineup when available.


Apr 27

Game 29,2019

Pirates at Dodgers, 6:10 PM PDT, TV: ATT SportsNet PIT, KTLA, SPNLA

The visitors’ RHP Joe Musgrove (1-1, 1.59 ERA) takes the hill against the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (0-0, 2.77 ERA). All four of Musgrove’s appearances this year have been quality starts (definition: complete six innings and permit no more than three earned runs). Kershaw’s two games this season were also quality starts. Last time out he uncharacteristically walked four men, but his opponents are hitting only .159 against him, so the walks didn’t hurt.

Barnesy’s home run yesterday:

Also:


Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1981 Fernandomania continues to explode at Chavez Ravine when Dodger rookie sensation Fernando Valenzuela pitches his fourth shutout in five starts. The 20 year-old Mexican southpaw, who is batting over .400, beats the Giants, 5-0, and lowers his ERA to a microscopic 0.20.
  • 2004 At Dodger Stadium, Mike Piazza ties Carlton Fisk for the most career homers by a catcher as he hits Hideo Nomo’s sixth-inning pitch into the stands for his 351st round-tripper as a backstop. The homer, which was his 362nd overall, moves the Mets’ star past Yankees’ Hall of Famer Joe DiMaggio on the all-time list.
  • 2007 On the night in which the ceremonial first pitch is thrown by his three sons, Trevor Hoffman is unable to hold on to a two run lead when the Dodgers score three in the ninth and eventually beat the Padres, 6-5. It’s ‘Trevor Time Desk Clock’ Night, and the usually reliable Padres closer blows the save, thanks to some shady defense, for the second consecutive game.
  • 2010 The suddenly streaking Mets win their sixth consecutive game with a doubleheader sweep of the Dodgers, 4-0 and 10-5. The victories mark the first time since August 28, 1971 that the club has taken both ends of a twin bill from L.A.

Lineup when available.


Apr 26

Game 28, 2019

Pirates at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, ATTSportsNet-PIT

The visiting Buccos send RHP Chris Archer (1-1, 2.74 ERA) to the Dodger Stadium mound to face the Dodgers’ LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (2-1, 3.10 ERA). Archer says the seven days rest he had before his last start was too much and his “stuff” wasn’t sharp, which cost him the game. Ryu made two mistakes in his last start and they both resulted in Christian Yelich home runs. The Dodgers were shut out in that game and Ryu was a hard-luck loser.

Remember the Dodgers’ four 30-HR guys in 1977? Remember that Dusty Baker had to homer on the last day of the season to reach that mark? Here’s a tidbit about that which I’d never heard before.

Entering the final weekend, Dusty Baker needed one more to join Reggie Smith, Ron Cey and Steve Garvey as the first foursome from one team to clout 30 in the same season. Houston was the opponent at Dodger Stadium. On Friday night before the first game, Reggie used the clubhouse phone, called the Astros dressing room, and asked to speak with James Rodney Richard. The 6-feet-8 Richard dominated the Dodgers more than any pitcher in the National League, beating them 13 straight times over the final 4½ years of his career. When J.R. got on the phone, Smith told him a lie, “Dusty is over here saying he’s going to hit his 30th off you Sunday.” When Reggie hung up, he went to Baker and told him what he had done, and a terrified Dusty replied, “Reggie, you are going to get me killed.”

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 2001 After two and a half years in the post, Kevin Malone resigns as the general manager of the Dodgers. Despite having the league’s largest payroll, Los Angeles has failed to make the playoffs during his tenure.
  • 2008 Brad Penny’s 96-mph fastball is missed by Dodger batterymate Russell Martin and knocks out umpire Kerwin Danley. After the players are asked to leave the field, the home plate arbitrator, who lost consciousness briefly, is placed on a stretcher and leaves the Dodgers-Rockies game in an ambulance.
  • 2008 “We can’t tell you to survive the storms of life, we can tell you to dance in the rain, and you can do it. You really can do it. Very difficult, but possible.” – VIN SCULLY, delivering the commencement address at Pepperdine University. (Take note of the graduates’ headgear.)

    Vin Scully receives an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Pepperdine University in Malibu, the institution’s highest honor. The Dodgers’ Hall of Fame broadcaster delivers a stirring commencement address to the 2008 Class of Seaver College, telling the graduates that achieving dreams may be “very difficult, but possible”.

Lineup when available.


Apr 25

Game 27, 2019

Dodgers at Cubs, 11:10 AM PDT, TV: NBCSCH, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA

RHP Ross Stripling (1-1, 3.07 ERA) climbs the hill for the Dodgers and the Cubs trot out veteran lefty Jon Lester (1-0, 2.57 ERA) in his return from the IL, where he’s been since April 8 with a strained hamstring. This will be Stripling’s sixth and possibly last start for a while, as Rich Hill is coming off the IL and will make his first start of the year on Sunday.

The Dodgers are 7-9 against the NL Central Division. They are 3-0 against the Reds, 4-3 against the Brewers, 0-4 against the Cardinals and 0-2 against the Cubs with one game to go in this series.

Today in Dodgers history:

  • 1937 Cliff Melton becomes the first rookie to fan at least 10 batters in his major league debut, finishing with 13 strikeouts in a complete-game loss to the Braves at the Polo Grounds. The 25 year-old southpaw, who loses the 3-1 contest due to the poor defense of the Giants in the ninth inning, will hold the rookie record for K’s in his debut until Dodger freshman Karl Spooner whiffs 15 batters in his first major league start in 1954.
  • 1958 In front of 60,635 fans at the Los Angeles Coliseum, the Dodgers, who beat St. Louis, 5-2, set a National League record for the largest crowd to attend a night game during the regular season. The mark will be broken next season when 61,552 fans show up on Opening Night at the Coliseum to watch their team defeat the Redbirds again.
  • 1967 Jim Lefebvre commits three errors in the fourth frame, paving the way for the Braves’ 7-1 victory at Dodger Stadium. The Los Angeles third baseman commits a fourth error, booting Hank Aaron’s grounder in the top of the ninth inning.
  • 1975 LA hurler Andy Messersmith strokes three doubles at Candlestick Park. The trio of two-baggers contributes to the Dodgers’ 6-5 victory over San Francisco with the right-hander scoring two runs and driving in another en route to his victory.
  • 1976 During the fourth inning of the game being played at Dodger Stadium, Rick Monday becomes a national hero when he takes away an American Flag about to be set on fire by the two trespassers (a father and son) in the outfield. The Cubs’ 30 year-old fly chaser, who served six years in the Marine Reserves, will be presented the flag a month later in a pregame ceremony at Wrigley Field by L.A. executive Al Campanis as a gesture of patriotic thanks.

  • 1995 The 257-day strike ends when the Dodgers beat the Marlins 8-7. The work stoppage caused last season to end early, forced the cancellation of the World Series, and delayed the opening of this season.

Lineup when available.


Apr 24

Game 26, 2019

Dodgers at Cubs, 5:05 PM PDT, TV: KTLA, SPNLA, WGN, SAP WGN

RHP Walker Buehler (2-0, 5.40 ERA) pitches for the Dodgers tonight against the Cubs’ LHP Cole Hamels (3-0, 2.77 ERA). This will be Buehler’s first appearance at “The Friendly Confines.” He was dominant in his last start but has been inconsistent so far this season. Hamels is in midseason form: he’s 3-0 with a 1.29 ERA, 19 strikeouts and no walks in his last three starts (21 innings).

Somebody needs to explain to me why Baez wasn’t called out for being out of the baseline on this play in yesterday’s game:

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1958 At the Los Angeles Coliseum, Gene Fodge picks up his only major league victory when the Cubs beat the Dodgers, 15-2. Outfielder Lee Walls carries the day with three homers and eight RBIs.
  • 1962 Dodger southpaw Sandy Koufax ties his major league record, a mark he shares with Bob Feller, when he strikes out 18 batters in a nine-inning contest during the team’s 10-2 rout of the Cubs at Wrigley Field. In 1938, nineteen year-old right-hander Bob Feller established the record, whiffing 18 batters in the Indians’ 4-1 loss to the Tigers at Cleveland Stadium.
  • 1965 Casey Stengel wins his 3,000th game as a manager when his Amazin’ Mets score three runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat San Francisco at Candlestick Park, 7-6. The ‘Old Perfessor’, who served as the skipper for the Dodgers, Braves, and Yankees, won more than a third of his games (1,149) during his 12-year tenure with the Bronx Bombers.
  • 1998 Dodger backstop Mike Piazza ties a major league record, hitting his third grand slam of the month. The blast highlights a nine-run second inning which leads Los Angeles to a 12-4 victory over the visiting Cubs.

Also, in 2003 Chase Utley gets his first major league hit, blasting a third inning grand slam off Rockies starter Dennis Cook. The rookie second baseman’s big fly to right field contributes to the Phillies’ 9-1 victory at Veterans Stadium.

Lineup when available.


Apr 23

Game 25, 2019

Dodgers at Cubs, 5:05 PM PDT, TV: MLBN (out-of-market only), NBCSCH, SPNLA

RHP Kenta Maeda (3-1, 3.80 ERA) goes for the Dodgers while LHP José Quintana (2-1, 3.43 ERA) pitches for the Cubs. Maeda will be working on six days rest, which bodes well for the Dodgers: he’s 10-4 lifetime when he has that much time between appearances. Quintana has held his opponents scoreless for 14-plus innings in his last two starts, striking out 18 and walking just one.

There’s a very flattering profile of Cody Bellinger at MLB.com as part of its “Young Stars Week.”

Bellinger’s overall approach at the plate has changed in ways that set him up to continue being an offensive menace, too. His strikeout rate has slashed in half, down to 12 percent from his career average of 24.2 percent. His walk rate is up a few ticks, too, in part due to pitchers approaching him more cautiously and in part due to improved discipline — he’s swinging at just 21.7 percent of pitches out of the strike zone, down nearly six percent from last season. And when he swings, he’s missed less often than anyone in the NL, with a league-best contact rate of 87.7 percent.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1958 In a 7-6 loss to Chicago at the LA Coliseum, two Dodger mainstays from Brooklyn reach career milestones. First baseman Gil Hodges, who will finish his 18-year major league tenure with 370 home runs, hits his 300th career round-tripper, and Captain Pee Wee Reese, a future Hall of Fame shortstop, plays in his 2000th game.
  • 1999 Fernando Tatis becomes the only player in baseball history to hit two grand slams in one inning when he collects eight RBIs in one frame to breaks the old record of six. The Cardinal third baseman hits both off Dodger starter Chan Ho Park in an 11-run third of the team’s 12-5 victory at Chavez Ravine.
  • 2000 The Dodgers complete a sweep of the Reds to notch their 1,000th win over baseball’s oldest professional franchise. Since 1970, Los Angeles is the only National League franchise to play over .500 ball (120-115) in Cincinnati (Riverfront Stadium/Cinergy Field).

Lineup:


Apr 21

Game 24, 2019

Dodgers at Brewers, 11:10 PDT, TV: FS-WI, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA, WYTU

The Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (0-0, 2.57 ERA) makes his second start of the season. He went seven innings, allowed two runs, walked no one and struck out six in his previous appearance. He’ll face the Brewers’ RHP Brandon Woodruff (2-1, 5.23 ERA), who hasn’t pitched badly but whose hitting has outshone his mound performance; he’s got five hits in his first seven ABs of the year.

In case you missed it, Freddie Galvis made a remarkable catch Saturday:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1925 No games are played in the National League due to the funeral for Dodger owner Charles Ebbets, who died three days ago. Edward McKeever, who became president of the Brooklyn club upon the death of the owner, contracts pneumonia at the services for his business partner and will be dead in eight days.
  • 1948 Returning after serving his one-year suspension from baseball, Dodger manager Leo Durocher uses 24 players in a 9-5 loss to the Giants. The controversial ‘Lip’ had been suspended last April by commissioner Happy Chandler for an assortment of actions deemed detrimental to baseball.
  • 1967 For the first time since LA opened their stadium in Chavez Ravine in 1962, the team is rained out at home. The postponement of their scheduled game against St. Louis ends a streak of 737 consecutive contests at Dodger Stadium without a washout.
  • 2000 In Cincinnati, the Dodger/Red game is delayed for 27 minutes due to the umpires’ equipment being accidentally shipped to New York. Replacement gear is secured from a downtown store, but due to heavy traffic, a police escort is needed to get the goods to Cinergy Field.
  • 2016 Jake Arrieta tosses a no-hitter in the Cubs’ 16-0 rout over the Reds at Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park. The Chicago right-handed ace becomes only the second pitcher, joining Johnny Vander Meer, who threw consecutive no-hitters in 1938, ever to go unbeaten between no-hit games, having not recorded a loss in his last 17 regular-season starts since he threw a no-no against the Dodgers last season.

You know, fans say the Cubs’ trade of Lou Brock to the Cardinals for Ernie Broglio was possibly the worst trade ever, but I think this one comes very close: in 1966 the Phillies obtain Larry Jackson and Bob Buhl from the Cubs in exchange for future Hall of Fame hurler Ferguson Jenkins, outfielder Adolfo Phillips, and first baseman/outfielder John Herrnstein. The pair of right-handers will post a 47-53 record collectively for Philadelphia as Chicago’s new moundsman will win twenty or more games for six consecutive seasons starting in 1967.

Lineup when available.


Apr 20

Game 23, 2019

Dodgers at Brewers, 4:10 PM PDT, TV: FS1, FS-WI, SPNLA

The Dodgers give LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (2-0, 3.07 ERA) the ball 12 days after he left a game in the second inning with a mild groin strain. The Brewers counter with RHP Chase Anderson (1-0, 4.50 ERA), who’s making a spot start replacing Freddie Peralta. Anderson’s longest outing from the bullpen this year was 43 pitches.

Kiké’s go-ahead HR from last night:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1999 A crowd of 37,317 fans enjoys a 3-2 victory over the Braves when LA surpasses the 100 million mark in attendance at Dodger Stadium. The ballpark opened in 1962, four seasons after the franchise moved from Brooklyn to the west coast.
  • 2011 Bud Selig announces MLB is taking over operations of the Dodgers because of concerns over team finances and the ability of Frank McCourt to run the franchise. Los Angeles is facing substantial debt payments, which the owner plans to meet by using funding from the club’s new $2.5 billion, 20-year media-rights deal with Fox Sports, but the Commissioner has withheld his approval of the agreement between the News Corp.’s media company and the team.
  • 2012 The Reds become the fifth major league team to record their 10,000th franchise victory with a 9-4 win over Chicago at Wrigley Field. Cincinnati joins the Giants, Cubs, Dodgers, Cardinals, and Braves in reaching the milestone.

Lineup when available.