Game 54, 2019

Mets at Dodgers, 5:10 PM PDT, TV: ESPN (out-of-market only), SNY, SPNLA

A battle of aces! The Mets send RHP Jacob DeGrom (3-5, 3.75 ERA) to the hill to face the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (4-0, 3.33 ERA). DeGrom has made five starts in May and has a 2.81 ERA to show for them. He was 0-1 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts against the Dodgers last season. Kershaw made his fifth quality start of the season last time out, and he’s got a 19-game unbeaten streak going dating back to last year. He’s 10-0 with nine no-decisions in that time, the longest active streak in the major leagues.

SI says Bellinger is making batting average relevant again. Making the case that 1941 was a long time ago and a lifetime away in baseball eras,

When Williams hit .406, the average major league game had 7.1 strikeouts. Now there are 17.5 strikeouts every game. Today the average reliever–not your All-Star closer, just your garden-variety reliever–strikes out batters at the same rate Sandy Koufax did (9.3 per nine innings). Of course, the average reliever also throws 94 mph with a wicked slider and every team is stocked with them.

R.I.P., Bill Buckner. The Dodgers traded him to the Cubs for Rick Monday in 1977, and you’d have to say the Cubs got the better of the deal. However, Garvey was entrenched at 1B and the newly-acquired Dusty Baker was signed to play left field. Buckner was coming off a serious ankle injury, the Dodgers didn’t think he could play center and they wanted more power at that position than they thought Buckner could provide. Monday promptly had the worst year of his career and after one more year as a starter he spent four years as a reserve with the Dodgers, retiring in 1984. Buckner went on to have 10 more productive years including a batting title in 1980.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1904 Giants’ infielder Dennis McGann steals five bases to establish a major league record. The 32 year-old Kentucky native’s thievery helps New York beat Brooklyn at the Polo Grounds, 3-1.

Also! In 2017

“We are honored to pay tribute to the 25th anniversary of Homer at the Bat.The Simpsons has left an impressive imprint on our culture as the longest-running American sitcom, and ‘Homer at the Bat’ remains as popular today as when the episode aired in 1992. ” – Hall of Fame President JEFF IDELSON, commenting about the Cooperstown celebration of the animated series.

The Baseball Hall of Fame inducts fictional cartoon character Homer Simpson as part of the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Simpsons episode ‘Homer at the Bat.’ As part of the ceremony, a roundtable discussion of the much-beloved episode includes comments by real Hall of-Famers Wade Boggs and Ozzie Smith, who played themselves on the animated show, as well as executive producers Al Jean and Mike Reiss, director Jim Reardon, executive story editor Jeff Martin and casting director Bonnie Pietila.

Lineup when available.


175 thoughts on “Game 54, 2019

  1. With yesterday’s results, Dodgers have second-best record in baseball, half a game behind the remarkable Twinkies. They lead the Snakes and Pads by eight, the Rox by ten, and the Gnats by 14.

  2. That inning demonstrates the Mets big problem this year. They have a very hard time getting from the starter to the closer.

  3. We almost had what Gary Cohen calls a zombie at bat with Freese – not a position player, not a pinch hitter anymore.

  4. An amazing game. If the Mets find some better bullpen pieces they could be in the play offs.

  5. Mistake No. 1: Nido, the runner on third, doesn’t run quickly and he slowed up when he got close to home. Mistake No. 2. Gomez, the runner on second, who does run fast, made a baserunning gaffe. Bellinger’s throw saved one run and who knows how many after that? And the irony is that were Gomez a slower runner, Nido would have scored before he was thrown out at third….And then, of course, there is the remarkable Bellinger, with two assists in one game. Oh, yeah, didn’t he hit a home run about three hours ago?

  6. This is the first time Dom Smith has played the outfield in the majors.

    • Guessing that Puig would have thrown home and probably nailed the runner.

      • They were just wondering the same thing. Why not go for the slower runner?

  7. Is Taylor back? He is hitting and has been hitting for several weeks now.

  8. Two games in a row where the Dodgers have scored (at least) 6 runs in the 6th. Makes sense. Wear down the starter. Get into the pen. Get on base. Hit home runs and sac flies etc.

  9. Brief update on my son’s Provincial Ultimate Tournament.

    They won in the quarterfinals beating the second rank team.

    They lost to the third rank team (who won the tournament last year) in the semi’s.

    And then in the Consolation Finals we ran into a team we beat earlier in the tournament. Unfortunately though the opposing team coach was a bit of an issue and Moderators had to step in to remove him. But by that point, he kinda rattled our kids a bit and took them off their game.

    It was an unfortunate ending but all in all – 4th place in Manitoba.

      • Thanks Link! Yep, it’s true.

        Now it’s on to Basketball Provincials next weekend and then Flag Football playoffs later in June.

        • Multi-sport athlete! He should be reading the original Chip Hilton YA books by Coach Clair Bee. (Not the reissues, which got published by one of the overtly Christian houses and modified to add religion to what were pure sports books.)

  10. This game is giving us everything, singles, relay throws, plays at the plate, home runs, Kershaw, deGroom,

    • I hope neither gives up 24 for the season. But I suppose it would be in line with some recent year totals.

  11. So far, and assuming the Dodgers win, this would be a great game to attend in person. I love plays like Belli made at home and relay plays like the Joc, Cocy, Russell one.

  12. The Mets announcers are discussing the fact that Kershaw’s ERA at Dodger Stadium is 2.11, the lowest for any pitcher with over 1000 innings in any stadium ever. Then they wondered about Sandy Koufax, who retired before getting to 1000 innings, so they looked up what his was. Koufax in his 750 innings at Dodger Stadium had an ERA of 1.37.

  13. Pads lose to Yanquis, but Snakes lead Rox 1-0 at Coors in the fourth. I’m not a betting man, but I’d be willing to wager that’s not the final score.

    As of this moment, Dodgers tied with Yanquis for second-best record in baseball, behind the Twinkies (!). Today’s game marks the one-third point of the season.

    • I don’t know what to make of the Yankees at this point. On one hand, most of their best hitters are on or have been on the IL for substantial amounts of time. Practically everyone they’ve brought up to fill in has far exceeded expectations (and Miguel Andujar, last years’ wunderkind, has probably lost his position to newcomer Gio Urshela). On the other hand, 32 of their 52 games have been against the Orioles, Royals, Tigers, Angels, and Gnats. They got swept by the Astros. And on the gripping hand, what happens when all their top players come off the IL?

  14. A friend’s over, so I’m watching on a bigger screen in the other room. Klayton let Conforto off the hook.

    • When Martin was out, Rocky didn’t get much playing time. I suspect that Smith sees a lot more PT, given the need to rest Martin more frequently.

    • Disqus has flagged two comments as spam in two days (not just yours). I don’t know why.

      On the bright side from my point of view, all I had to do to approve your comment below was reply to the email I got with the word “Approve” in the text. I didn’t have to log in to a Disqus or WordPress dashboard, find the comment, and then approve it.

  15. Some Mets stuff from the east coast…

    Last Monday, after the Mets were swept by the lowly Marlins (including getting shut out twice) and quickly were becoming a hot mess, Mets’ GM Brodie Van Wagenen scheduled a press conference that everyone assumed would be the announcement that it was all over for manager Mickey Callaway. Instead, BVW doubled dowm, basically saying that the the Mets have the league right where they want them, and fully endorsed Callaway. The Mets then went 6-1, sweeping four from the archrival Nats and taking two of three from the lowly Tigers, getting back to .500 on the year. Now they’re at Chavez Ravine.

    They are missing a key player on offense in Jeff McNeil who is probably their best pure hitter. They still have rookie sensation Pete Alonso (17 HR) who can hit the ball a very long way. Michael Conforto just came off the IL.Dom Smith pinch hits and plays first against tough righties, but has no position otherwise. After that. there’s not much in the line up. J.D. Davis has been seeing more playing time with McNeil out, but mostly he’s being blocked by Todd Frazier (OPS+ 66) for reasons best known only to BVW and Callaway.

    The starting pitching has been okay, which is way below what Mets fans expected. DeGrom has regressed to the mean, which in his case is still really good. Matz has been fine, but doesn’t go deep into games (this turns out to be a big problem). Apart from a couple of standout games, Syndergaard has been terrible, having his worst year by far so far. Vargas should be bagging groceries somewhere on Staten Island. The big problem for the Mets is that their bullpen runs from inconsistent to absolutely awful. Jeurys Familia (their former competent closer) was brought back to be the setup guy for Edwin Diaz (who has been good), but Familia has displayed a total lack of command. I listen to the Mets games the car at night on the way home from teaching, so I’m usually tuning in around the seventh inning, just in time to have heard a lot of Familia’s innings this year, and they’re a tough listen. His WHIP is over 2 at this point. It doesn’t get much better with the other guys. Gsellman is the probably best of a bad lot.

    And as usual, the Mets are still the most Mets-like organization there is. Robinson Cano was benched for failing to hustle, so the next time he got into a game, he busted it out of the box on a grounder… and pulled a hamstring. He’s on the IL. The Mets also hoped Yoenis Cespedis would be back in late June following heel surgery, but then he stepped in a hole on his ranch and broke his ankle in two places. Gone for the year. It’s the Mets, Jake.

  16. Dusty was the center fielder the first year he was a Dodger, with Buckner in left.