Aug 13

Game 120, 2018

Giants at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, NBC Bay Area

Book plug: I have this on my Kindle and dip into it during baseball season — “The Giants and the Dodgers: Four Cities, Two Teams, One Rivalry”

Tonight’s episode of that rivalry pits two of the best pitchers in the game against one another. Their respective won-loss records are highly unusual. Madison Bumgarner of the Giants is 4-4 with a 2.69 ERA, while Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers is 5-5 with a 2.58 ERA. Each pitcher has spent a lot of time on the disabled list this season; Bumgarner didn’t make his debut until June, while Kershaw lost seven weeks in May and June. In MadBum’s last start he went seven innings, gave up five hits and no runs to the Astros and got no decision. Kershaw’s last start was against the Athletics; he went six innings, gave up six hits and two runs and also got no decision.

In his 30-game pitching career against the Dodgers, Bumgarner has gone 15-10 with a 2.60 ERA. In his 43-game pitching career against the Giants, Kershaw has gone 22-10 with a 1.60 ERA.

You know it’s National Lefthanders Day, right? Not only does the game feature two of the best lefties the NL has to offer, the Dodgers found a pair on their dugout bench.

The Dodgers activated RHP Eric Goeddel from the DL and optioned Pat Venditte to Oklahoma City.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1910 In a game which features each team having 38 at-bats, 13 hits, 12 assists, 2 errors, 5 strikeouts, 3 walks, 1 hit batsman, and 1 passed ball, the Pirates and the Superbas (later to be known as the Dodgers) play to what else – an 8-8 tie.
  • 1951 Any fan who shows up with a musical instrument during the Dodgers’ Musical Depreciation Night is admitted free to the Ebbets Field contest against Boston. With an assortment of trumpets, trombones, zithers, tubas, accordions, bugles, flutes, various type of drums, violins, mandolins, assorted horns, a glockenspiel, a washboard, and a piano, 2,426 fans, which is about 10% of the total crowd, take advantage of the team’s unusual promotion.
  • 1965 Dean Chance establishes an American League record when he fans to extend his streak to 11 consecutive plate appearances with a strikeout. The Angels’ right-hander falls one shy of the major league mark set by Sandy Koufax, who whiffed in 12 consecutive plate appearances in 1955.
  • 1982 At Chavez Ravine, Dodger second baseman Steve Sax steals his 41st base to set a franchise record for rookies when he swipes second base in LA’s 6-1 victory over San Francisco. The eventual National League Rookie of the Year, the fourth consecutive Dodger to win the award, will extend the record to 49.
  • 2006 LA’s Greg Maddux and SF’s Jason Schmidt hook up in a classic West Coast pitcher’s duel, reminiscent of match-ups of Koufax and Marichal, as the Dodgers beat the Giants, 1-0, thanks to Russell Martin’s 10th inning walk-off home run. When Giants slugger Barry Bonds lines into a double play in the first inning, it marks the only time in baseball history a 300 game winner pitches to a batter with over 700 homers.
  • 2007 For the first time in 1,303 games, Nomar Garciaparra of the Dodgers is ejected from a game. The 12-year veteran infielder, who is tossed by home plate umpire Tom Hallion for arguing a called third strike in the fourth inning, is restrained by first base coach Mariano Duncan when he continues to shout and points his bat toward the umpire.

Lineup:


Nov 06

What’s in your baseball library?

Prompted by Bob Hendley’s comment below.

What should be?

I’ve bought three baseball books in the past month:

If you need an overview of baseball history for your reference shelves, I just got this one (used). It’s current through 2004 and it’s pretty good.

If you want a good history of the Dodgers – Giants rivalry through 2003 (so not including the Giants’ three WS championships in the 2000s), this is a good one.

And finally, I added a minor classic: I picked up a used copy of David Halberstam’s Summer of ’49.

My entire baseball collection is cataloged at Library Thing.

What do you have and what do you want to get?

Jul 04

Game 85, 2016 and 4th of July historical revisionism

The guy who wrote the latest Ty Cobb biography explains why most of what we’ve been told of Cobb is a lie. For example, his family history would indicate he was no racist, despite what we’ve been told:

Ty Cobb was descended from a long line of abolitionists. His great-grandfather was a minister who preached against slavery and was run out of town for it. His grandfather refused to fight in the Confederate army because of the slavery issue. And his father was an educator and state senator who spoke up for his black constituents and is known to have once broken up a lynch mob.

[snip]

Cobb himself was never asked about segregation until 1952, when the Texas League was integrating, and Sporting News asked him what he thought. “The Negro should be accepted wholeheartedly, and not grudgingly,” he said. “The Negro has the right to play professional baseball and whose [sic] to say he has not?”

I’ve read the biography, and it’s a good one. I give it 4 stars.

On to today’s game.

Orioles at Dodgers, 6:10PM PT, TV: MLBN (out-of-market only), MASN, SPNLA

The Dodgers have won four straight and the Orioles have lost four straight. Despite that the Orioles still lead the AL East by three games. Each streak could continue after this evening’s game with its early start time (fireworks afterward!). The Dodgers ask young Julio Urias (1-2, 4.09 ERA) to keep up his good work; he’s lowered his ERA from one game to the next in each of his 7 starts. He’s thrown 33 innings so far for the big leaguers in 2016 after throwing 41 in the minors this season. The most he’s ever thrown in a season is 87 2/3 in 2014, so he’s coming close to a shutdown point.

Urias will be opposed by Yovani Gallardo (3-1, 5.77 ERA). This is his fourth start after coming off the DL, where he’d been with shoulder tendinitis. His last start was his best since his return; he went six innings against the Padres and got the win.

Note: the Orioles hit a lot of home runs. They just set a major league record by hitting 56 in June, the most ever in that calendar month. They are on pace to hit 262 for the season, just two short of the all-time record of 264 set by the A-Rod-Griffey Jr.-Jay Buhner-E. Martinez Mariners in 1997.

Update: Hyun-Jin Ryu will start Thursday’s game for the Dodgers against the Padres.

Lineup:

May 24

Game 47, 2016

Before we get to the game details, have a look at a new book featuring a whole bunch of Dodgers from the 1960s teams: “The Last Innocents: The Collision of the Turbulent Sixties and the Los Angeles Dodgers.”

Leahy places these men’s lives within the political and social maelstrom that was the era when the conformity of the 1950s gave way to demands for equality and rights. Increasingly frustrated over a lack of real bargaining power and an iron-fisted management who occasionally meddled in their personal affairs, many players shared an uneasy relationship with the team’s front office.

Since that was the period in which I became a fan, I’m looking forward to reading this.

Now, on to today’s game.

Reds at Dodgers, 7:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA, CIN TV

The Dodgers sent Stripling down to AAA after his three-inning relief stint on Sunday in order to bring another starter back up, and it’ll be Mike Bolsinger, (0-1, 6.23 ERA). He’ll pitch against Daniel Wright, who’s making his MLB debut after a nine-inning complete game win at AAA Louisville May 16.

This is hard to believe, considering how hard-fought those Dodgers-Reds games were in the 1970s and 1980s, but over the last decade the Dodgers have a 45-23 record against the Reds, their best winning percentage against any team in the National League.

Lineup when available.