After last night’s win, tonight it will be Hyun-Jin Ryu v. Trevor Cahill in Game Two of the Opening Series (as MLB’s calling it). Game time is 1:00PM local in Sydney, 4:00PM in Hawai’i and 7:00PM PST. There’s no official word about the lineup yet.
Light a candle for Uribear today; it’s his birthday. Think good LA traffic thoughts for our friend John_from_Aus too; he’s got a 3 1/2 hour drive from his home south of Canberra to Sydney.
Now there’s a lineup:
It’s finally here, even if it is on another continent. Lineup:
Some of the adulation sent Kershaw’s way in the runup to this game makes me think he should be sent off to look for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. If he’s as good as some people want to make him out to be, he’s wasted pitching a mere baseball game right now.
Update: Take note of the standings for the NL West over there on the right under the calendar. Hopefully tomorrow it will have the Dodgers leading the division with the Diamondbacks in last place.
Update: Video from the Dodgers – Team Australia game (won 4 – 2 by the Dodgers). Puig ties the game at 2 – 2.
I didn’t get very many takers last year as I recall, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a group again.
Here’s the link.
Group Name: Elysian Fields
Group Password: hershiser59
Update: From the official rules:
Lock-time. All picks will lock at the scheduled tip off time of the Tournament currently scheduled for Thursday, March 20, 2014. Your picks for the matchups must be submitted, received and recorded by Sponsor’s computer by the scheduled locktime.
“A 2013 study found that 124 active pitchers, about one-third of those in the majors, had undergone Tommy John surgery at some point in their careers.” The man who invented that surgical procedure died today at the age of 88. Here’s the NYT obituary.
Here’s a wonderful story on the occasion of his Baseball Hall of Fame commendation ceremony in July of 2013, and here’s a photo essay of the doctor by Jon Soo Hoo.
Two of the most exciting players in baseball combined for one heckuva play this afternoon when Mike Trout hit a ball to Yasiel Puig in center field. Puig dove inadvisedly, but then retrieved the ball from the wall and threw a strike to Hanley Ramirez who relayed the ball on one hop to A.J. Ellis, who stayed off to one side and tagged Trout as he attempted to score on an inside-the-park home run.
Thank heaven for video. I’ve have been very sorry to miss this play.
Update: Two video highlights in one day! Scott van Slyke hit the Dodgers’ second grand slam in two days after Guerrero did it yesterday:
Update II: The MLB Network did a “30 Clubs in 30 Days” tour during this year’s Spring Training, and here’s the Dodgers’ episode at Camelback Ranch. Click the Wilson video if only to see his hair (not beard, hair).
Jeepers. This Australia trip has done severe damage to the Spring Training schedule. The halt, the lame and the blind may get put on a short-term DL, those who don’t measure up may be cut early, and even the healthy may not be ready to pitch. According to the team website (via Jon W), they’re not even sure Kershaw will be ready to pitch on Opening Day in Australia.
The Dodgers will have only 19 days of Spring Training games to make nearly all of their decisions. Last spring, they played 36 games before Opening Day.
“It’s not a perfect situation,” said manager Don Mattingly, “but it’s good for the game.”
Even though the 25-man roster officially doesn’t need to be submitted until March 21 at 1 p.m. PT, the Dodgers and D-backs will break camp on March 16 and take a maximum of 30 players to Australia from which to draw their 25-man Opening Day rosters.
Yikes. The only consolation for this is that the team which might be their strongest rival within the division is having to do precisely the same thing, since the D-Backs are the opponents in Oz.
When the team hasn’t announced a deal but the player has a locker at the Spring Training clubhouse in Arizona, does he have a deal? That’s what we know about Paul Maholm, who’ll be in his tenth year and has a lousy W-L record to show for it. On the other hand, if you’d pitched for the Pirates for seven years between 2005 and 2011, you’d have been hard-pressed to do much better.
Billingsley thinks his Tommy John surgery has given him an entirely new arm. He’s throwing 80mph off a mound and won’t try curveballs till the end of February.
Mattingly says Kemp probably won’t play in Australia; he hasn’t yet run outside.
Dee Gordon has been practicing at second base and in the outfield.
Update: From Camelback Ranch today:
At the moment Elysian Fields doesn’t have a separate design for mobile phone users. Would that be of interest to anyone? The two most popular have not yet been tested for this latest version of WordPress, but once they are I can add one of those for the site. As I understand it the software recognizes when it’s being read on a smartphone and automatically switches, although I could be wrong. I’ll find that out before I do it, if I do it at all.
What say you?
Update: Okay, I did it. If you’ve got a smartphone, when you call up Elysian Fields in its browser you should see a list of the most recent posts. Tap the one you want to read and its text will come up on screen along with all the comments.
Matt Snyder at CBS Sports’s Eye on Baseball blog has picked his all-time lineup of Dodgers based on the best single-season performance he could find at each position. Here’s his lineup:
1. 1949 Jackie Robinson, 2B
2. 2011 Matt Kemp, CF
3. 2004 Adrian Beltre, 3B
4. 1997 Mike Piazza, C
5. 1985 Pedro Guerrero, LF
6. 1930 Babe Herman, RF
7. 1941 Dolph Camilli, 1B
8. 1949 Pee Wee Reese, SS
With Starting Pitchers:
1966 Sandy Koufax,
1928 Dazzy Vance,
1964 Don Drysdale,
1988 Orel Hershisher,
2013 Clayton Kershaw
Before the Koufax purists freak out, the rules of the game say only the best season the player had can be included, otherwise you might have Sandy starting every game of the hypothetical season.
2003 Eric Gagne,
1974 Mike Marshall,
2013 Kenley Jansen
He backs up his choices with his reasoning at the link.