Jul 15

Game 96, 2018

Angels at Dodgers, 1:10 PM PDT (? My paper has it at that time; MLB has it at 7:10 PM PDT), TV: SPNLA, FS-W

The Angels ask RHP Deck McGuire (0-1, 6.10 ERA) to win the rubber match. All he has to do is hold the Dodgers in check while his team scores against LHP Clayton Kershaw (3-4, 2.61 ERA). Easy-peasy! McGuire has been used as a spot starters this season; he last started on July 7, also against the Dodgers. He pitched three scoreless innings in that game and didn’t figure in the decision. Kershaw didn’t pitch in last weekend’s series in Anaheim; his last start was on Monday against the Padres. He pitched six scoreless innings, gave up two hits and got the win.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1960 Home plate umpire Frank Dascoli stops play for 24 minutes when Willie McCovey hits a pitch into shallow left field that no one can see because of the dense fog. The Giants first baseman’s second inning ‘invisible triple’ doesn’t deter the Dodgers when they go on to win the Candlestick Park contest, 5-3.
  • 2003 At the All-Star Game played in Chicago’s U.S. Cellular Field, Angels outfielder Garret Anderson goes 3-for-4, including a two-run homer and a double, helping the American League to beat the NL, 7-6. Pinch-hitting in the eighth inning, Rangers third baseman Hank Blalock hits a go-ahead two-run homer off the usually untouchable reliever of the Dodgers, Eric Gagne.
  • 2004 Eric Gagne surpasses Jeff Shaw for the most career saves in franchise history, collecting his 130th save in a Dodger uniform. The 28 year-old right-handed closer pitches a perfect ninth, striking out the side, in the team’s 5-2 victory over Arizona at Bank One Ballpark.
  • 2017 Cody Bellinger becomes the first Dodger rookie to hit for the cycle when he collects a seventh-inning triple in the team’s 7-1 victory over the Marlins in Miami. The 22-year old freshman goes 4-for-5, driving in three runs en route to his historic accomplishment.

Also: in 1939 National League president Ford Frick orders two-foot screens affixed inside all foul poles after Billy Jurges of the Giants and umpire George Magerkurth spit at each other after a foul ball call down the left field line is disputed at the Polo Grounds. The American League will soon follow the Senior Circuit lead and will also install foul ball screens.

And: in 1994 after being confiscated in the first inning of the Indians-White Sox contest at Comiskey Park, Albert Belle’s bat, suspected of being corked, is placed in umpire Dave Phillips’ locker for further examination. The attempt to take and replace the suspected bat by a bungling burglar, who gains access to the umpire’s room by squirming through the stadium’s overhead crawl space, a thievery Jason Grimsley will confess to five-years later, is immediately uncovered with the discovery of pieces of broken ceiling tile on the floor, and a new name on the ‘clean’ bat which now reads, Paul Sorrento.

Lineup:


Jul 14

Game 95, 2018

Angels at Dodgers, 4:15 PM PDT, TV: FOX

LHP Andrew Heaney (5-6, 3.84 ERA) pitches for the Angels this afternoon while LHP Alex Wood (5-5, 3.88 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. These two guys faced each other last Sunday. Heaney gave up three runs to the Dodgers over the course of seven innings and got the win, while Wood went six innings, also surrendering three runs but not figuring in the decision. Shohei Ohtani hit a pinch-hit HR off JT Chargois in the seventh to win it for the Angels. This was also the game in which Puig hurt his oblique after hitting a three-run home run off Heaney in the second inning.

The Dodgers optioned Walker Buehler to AAA OKC and activated LHP Zac Rosscup, who was just claimed off waivers from the Colorado Rockies.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1968 In the nightcap of a twin bill, Don Wilson strikes out eighteen batters in a nine-inning game to tie the then major league record, shared by Bob Feller (Indians, 1938) and Sandy Koufax (Dodgers, 1959 and 1962). The Astros right-hander fans future Hall of Famer Johnny Bench for the last out of his 6-1 victory over the Reds on a wind-swept night at Crosley Field.

    Courtesy of the Houston Astros network
    via Astrosdaily.com

  • 1995 Ramon Martinez throws the 22nd no-hitter in franchise history when he beats the Marlins at Dodger Stadium, 7-0. The Dodger right-hander, who was booed by the home crowd in his last outing, was perfect before walking Tommy Gregg on a 3-2 pitch after getting the first out in the seventh inning.
  • 2005 Defeating their historical arch rivals, the Giants become the first team to win 10,000 games as a franchise by edging the Dodgers in LA, 4-3. The Giants, who started as the New York Gothams in 1899, have posted a 10,000-8,511 record during the club’s 123 seasons in the National League.

Lineup:


Jul 13

Game 94, 2018

Angels at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FS-W

The visiting Angels send out RHP Felix Peña (1-0, 3.63 ERA), who will be making his fifth start. He went 5 1/3 innings against the Dodgers last Friday and gave up two runs. The Angels came out on top thanks to a two-error 9th inning by the Dodgers, but he didn’t figure in the decision. He’ll face the Dodgers’ RHP Walker Buehler (4-2, 3.44 ERA), who’s been on the DL with microfractured ribs suffered on May 21. He’s had one rehab start and a five-inning simulated game and the Dodgers think he’s healed.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1939 The Red Sox send 21 year-old farmhand Pee Wee Reese to the Dodgers for $35,000 and a player to be named later (Red Evans), along with three minor leaguers due to a less-than-enthusiastic scouting report filed by Joe Cronin, the team’s current player-manager, who deliberately downplayed the prospect’s talent to keep his own job in the Boston infield. The Louisville Colonels regular shortstop, a future Hall of Famer, will become a crowd favorite, helping Brooklyn to win seven pennants during his 16 seasons with the team.
  • 1949 Jackie Robinson testifies in front of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, reading a carefully worded statement put together with the help of Dodger GM Branch Rickey. The Brooklyn second baseman’s statement makes it clear he disagrees with singer and actor Paul Robeson’s belief that American Negroes would refuse to fight in any war against Russia due to the country’s racial discrimination toward blacks.

Chase Utley announced he will retire at the end of this season.

Lineup:


Jul 12

Game 93, 2018

Dodgers at Padres, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD

Freshly appointed to his first All Star Game, RHP Ross Stripling (7-2, 2.22 ERA) takes the hill at Petco Park this evening to face RHP Tyson Ross (5-7, 4.41 ERA). Stripling allowed the Angels no hits during his last start; he did give up three to Mike Trout, but he got the win anyway. Ross has seen his ERA jump a full point in his last two starts. The speculation is his slider has temporarily deserted him.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1949 The first All-Star Game which includes black players is played at Ebbets Field. The Dodgers’ Roy Campanella, Jackie Robinson, and Don Newcombe represent the National League in an 11-7 loss to Larry Doby and his AL teammates.
  • 1966 The National League All-Stars edge the AL, 2-1, in a game played at the newly-built Busch Stadium when hometown favorite Tim McCarver scores the winning run on Dodger shortstop Maury Wills’s tenth-inning walk-off single, with Giants hurler Gaylord Perry getting the victory by tossing a scoreless ninth and tenth inning. The 105-degree weather, 113 degrees on the playing surface, results in nearly 150 people needing treatment for heat exhaustion.

This is notable: In 1949 the major league owners agree to install warning tracks made of cinder in front of outfield fences before the start of next season. The origin of the concept began at Yankee Stadium, where an actual running track, used in the ballpark’s track and field events, helped fielders know their proximity to the outfield fence when attempting to make a play. One wonders if that might have saved Pete Reiser’s career. Reiser “was taken off the field on a stretcher a record 11 times.”

Lineup:


Jul 11

Game 92, 2018

Dodgers at Padres, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD

The Dodgers send RHP Kenta Maeda (5-5, 3.24 ERA) to the mound to face the Padres’ LHP Joey Lucchesi (4-4, 3.27 ERA). Maeda went 5 2/3 innings against the Angels in his last start, giving up just one run. He went on paternity leave the following day. Lucchesi is a rookie; he went down with a hip strain but has come back and pitched well in three of his four starts since then.

On this day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1953 Giant rookie Al Worthington throws a four-hitter, blanking the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, 6-0. The whitewashing, which halts Brooklyn’s record NL streak of homering in 24 consecutive games and marks the only game this season the team will not a score, makes the 24 year-old right-hander the first National League freshman this century to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, a feat that Karl Spooner will also match next season.
  • 1958 The Los Angeles city council declares today ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game Day’ to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the iconic baseball song. In a pregame ceremony at the LA Memorial Coliseum, the Dodgers honor lyricist Jack Norworth, presenting him with a lifetime pass to any American or National League game.
  • 1978 At Jack Murphy Stadium, Steve Garvey becomes the first two-time MVP in All-Star history. The Dodger first baseman’s game-tying, two-run single and a triple help the National League to beat the AL, 7-3.
  • 1980 The Dodgers sell Charlie Hough to the Rangers. The 32 year-old knuckleballer will spend 11 seasons with Texas, posting a 139-123 record along with an ERA of 3.68.
  • 1998 Padre reliever Trevor Hoffman, brother of opposing manager Glenn Hoffman, saves the Padres’ 4-1 victory over the Dodgers. It’s the first time in major league history a player has faced his brother as the skipper of the opposing team.

Also, in 1976 At Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium thirty-four couples marry at home plate and a wrestling championship match takes place in a promotion billed as Headlocks and Wedlocks. The Braves take down the Mets, 9-8.

Lineup:


Jul 10

Game 91, 2018

Dodgers at Padres, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD

Today’s menu has two lefties, Rich Hill (2-3, 4.56 ERA) for the Dodgers and Eric Lauer (4-5, 4.54 ERA) for the Friars. Hill seems to have recovered from his blister problems (knock on wood) and is making his regular turn despite sustaining a stiff neck in a headfirst slide his last time out. Lauer is a rookie who’s 3-2 with a 2.63 ERA since the first of June.

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1943 Some of the Dodgers, led by infielder Arky Vaughan, threaten not to play in today’s game to protest the suspension of their teammate Bobo Newsome by manager Leo Durocher. The Ebbets Field contest begins ten minutes late. Brooklyn plundered the Pirates, 23-6, and in a few days, Newsome, who had argued with his skipper over a pitch selection in a previous game, is traded to the Browns for Archie McKain and Fritz Ostermueller.
  • 1953 With Roy Campanella’s home run off Giants hurler Sal Maglie, the Dodgers establish a National League record, homering in their 24th consecutive game. Campy’s homer is the only run Brooklyn scores as the Giants extend their winning streak to seven with the 6-1 victory.
  • 1979 With his team trailing the Padres 5-3 in the bottom of the ninth with two outs at Veterans Stadium, Phillies pinch hitter Del Unser hits a three-run walk-off home run, giving the team a 6-5 comeback victory. The dramatic dinger makes Del Unser only the second player in major league history to hit a homer in three consecutive at bats as a pinch hitter, a feat also accomplished by Lee Lacy of the Dodgers last season.
  • 1984 At San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, Dodger southpaw Fernando Valenzuela and Mets rookie Dwight Gooden combine to strike out six consecutive American League All-Stars on the 50th anniversary of Carl Hubbell’s memorable 1934 Midsummer Classic performance of setting down five future Hall of Famers on strikes. Dwight Gooden, at the age of 19, becomes the youngest player ever to participate in an All-Star Game.

In one of the most famous events in baseball history, at the All Star Game in 1934 in New York’s Polo Grounds, Giants pitcher Carl Hubbell faces a starting lineup comprised of nine eventual Hall of Famers. ‘King Carl’ is up to the unique occurrence in baseball history when he fans five batters in a row after letting the first two hitters reach base: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons, and Joe Cronin.

Lineup when available.


Jul 09

Game 90, 2018

Dodgers at Padres, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD, MLBN (out-of-market only)

The Dodgers have beaten the Padres in six of nine meetings so far this season. Today they’ll send LHP Clayton Kershaw (2-4, 2.86 ERA) to the mound in hopes he’ll continue to recover from his two stints on the disabled list. He’ll face the Padres’ RHP Luis Perdomo (1-2, 6.86 ERA), who has made one start since coming back from a two-month stay in AAA El Paso with the Chihuahuas.


The Dodgers and Yankees are promoting Muncy and Giancarlo Stanton as candidates for the ASG Final Vote.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1956 The BBWAA, by a narrow margin of 14-12, votes to establish the Cy Young Award to honor the major leagues’ most outstanding pitcher. Commissioner Ford Frick initiated the idea because he felt hurlers were not recognized in the MVP voting, but ironically the first recipient of the Cy Young Award, Dodger Don Newcombe, also won the Most Valuable Player Award.
  • 1996 Mike Piazza, who will be named the All-Star Game’s MVP, hits a moon shot into the upper-deck at Philadelphia’s Veterans Stadium. The Dodger backstop also strokes an RBI double, helping the National League to beat the AL, 6-0.

Lineup when available.

As expected, Puig (probably) to DL. Toles in CF, Kemp in RF, Joc in LF.


Jul 08

Game 89, 2018

Dodgers at Angels, 5:15 PM PDT, TV: ESPN

LHP Alex Wood (5-5, 3.84 ERA) takes the hill for the Dodgers in the rubber match of this three-game series. He’ll face the Angels’ briefly-a-Dodger LHP Andrew Heaney (4-6, 3.94 ERA). Wood has won his last four starts after a three-game slump, while Heaney took the loss in his last start despite giving up only three runs over seven innings to the Mariners. He’s 0-2 with a 6.10 ERA in his only two career starts against the Dodgers.

An aside: I suspect the people who write these previews look up and add the career numbers as filler. Logically, if some pitcher is 12-2 over his lifetime against one team (or 2-12) he’s faced numerous iterations of that team. In these days of nearly-unfettered player movement it might be more useful to look at his career stats against each player he’s expecting to face in the game.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1949 Hank Thompson, who broke into the majors as a member of the St. Louis Browns twelve days after Larry Doby’s American League debut with the Indians in 1947, becomes the first African-American to play for the Giants. When the former Kansas City Monarchs’ standout faces Dodger right-hander Don Newcombe, it marks the first time a pitcher-batter confrontation takes place between black players in the major leagues.

In the “Dubious Moments in Baseball History” column comes this item: in 1979 the Mets announce the selection of Mettle as the name for the team’s new mascot mule. Dolores Mapps of Mercerville, N.J., who submitted the winning entry, believes the moniker captures the team’s “spirit, ardor, stamina, and courage, all of which the Mets have in abundance.”

In a slightly more aesthetic moment, back in 1994 Red Sox shortstop John Valentin snares Marc Newfield’s sixth-inning line drive, steps on second to retire Mike Blowers, and then tags the runner coming from first, Kevin Mitchell, to turn an unassisted triple play. After completing the rare feat, accomplishing a play that has occurred only ten times in major league history, the infielder begins a three-homer outburst by Boston in the bottom of the frame, helping the team defeat the Mariners at Fenway Park, 4-3.

Lineup when available.


Jul 07

Game 88, 2018

Dodgers at Angels, 4:15 PM PDT, TV: FOX

RHP Ross Stripling (6-2, 2.27 ERA) goes for the Dodgers against the Angels’ RHP Deck McGuire (0-1, 7.56 ERA), who’ll be making his second big league start. His first didn’t go well: last Sunday he gave up five runs in 3 1/3 innings to the Orioles. Stripling himself hasn’t won in his last four starts.

Maeda to paternity list, RHP Dylan Floro called up.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1953 The Dodgers set a major league mark for the most consecutive games with a home run by a team with a least one round-tripper in their 24 contests. Brooklyn starter Preacher Roe hits the record-breaking homer with a third-inning blast in the team’s 9-5 victory over Pittsburgh at Forbes Field.
  • 1998 Jeff Shaw becomes the first player to participate in an All-Star Game wearing a uniform for a team he hasn’t yet played for when he works an inning, allowing three hits and a run pitching for the National League squad before appearing in a regular season game for the Dodgers. The 32 year-old closer, who posted a 1.81 ERA along with 23 saves in the first half of the season for the Reds, was traded three days ago by Cincinnati to Los Angeles for Paul Konerko and Dennys Reyes.
  • 2004 Kazuhisa Ishii tosses a one-hitter in the Dodgers’ 11-0 defeat of Arizona. The 30 year-old Japanese southpaw retires the first 12 batters he faces before issuing a leadoff walk to Luis Gonzalez, which is followed with a single by Shea Hillenbrand, but then the left-hander proceeds to mow down 15 consecutive D-Backs to finish his masterpiece.

Lineup when available.


Jul 06

Game 87, 2018

Dodgers at Angels, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, FS-W

The Dodgers take the 40-mile drive southeast to Angels Stadium for Game One of the Freeway Series. They’ll send RHP Kenta Maeda (5-5, 3.36 ERA) to the mound for his third career start against the Halos. He pitched well enough to win in his last start against the Rockies, but German Marquez was better, holding the Dodgers to two hits and one run over eight innings. The Angels counter with Felix Peña (1-0, 3.71 ERA), who will be making just his fourth big league start tonight. He got his first win as a starter a week ago when he pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings against the Orioles while giving up just five hits. He’s still learning: he’s only pitched 60 1/3 innings in the major leagues since his debut in 2016.

Down on the farm: Verdugo and Toles are hot at OKC, AAA All-Stars include four OKC players and two Dodger prospects lead their respective leagues (Texas and California) in home runs.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1938 At Crosley Field, Yankees’ hurler Lefty Gomez is defeated for the first time in four All-Star starts as the NL wins the All-Star game 4-1. National League shortstop Leo Durocher becomes the first Dodger to start in an All-Star Game and gets a ‘bunt’ home run.
  • 1953 In his first major league start, 24 year-old right-hander Al Worthington throws a two-hitter, blanking the Pirates, 6-0. The Giants’ rookie, known as ‘Red’, will become the first National League freshman to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, when he repeats the feat in his next outing, also blanking the Dodgers, 6-0.
  • 2000 Vin Scully, 72, is voted the No. 1 sportscaster of the 20th century by members of the American Sportscasters Association. The Dodger veteran broadcaster’s 51-year career has included play-by-play of 25 Fall Classics and a dozen All-Star Games.

Lineup when available.