May 14

Game 44, 2019

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

Incipient ace RHP Chris Paddack (3-1, 1.55 ERA) pitches for the Padres while LHP Clayton Kershaw (2-0, 3.31 ERA) goes to the mound for the Dodgers. Paddack has had seven days rest since his last start, a 7 2/3 inning effort in which he struck out 11 Mets and got the win. From an article at MLB.com discussing the early front-runners for the Cy Young award: “Paddack pitched 90 innings of Minor League ball last season in his return from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, and he hasn’t pitched on fewer than five days of rest as he approaches the 50-inning mark this season.”

Kershaw is 18-6 with a 1.97 ERA lifetime against the Padres. In his last start he went 6 2/3 innings and got the win against the Braves. This is the only time I can remember Kershaw’s opponent having a lower ERA than the Dodgers’ ace going into a game.

By the way, Kershaw made an appearance on The Ellen Show recently:


Late Breaking News: Julio Urias has been arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor domestic battery after an incident last night.

Urias’ arrest came after officers with the Los Angeles Police Department responded to reports of a domestic violence incident in the parking lot of the Beverly Center at 8500 Beverly Blvd. Witnesses told police they saw a man later identified as Urias shove a woman, who then fell over.

Authorities reviewed surveillance footage, which indicated the woman had been pushed, according to a source familiar with the police probe who was not authorized to speak about it. LAPD officers in domestic violence cases typically seek independent evidence of violent acts, such as video, physical marks or other confirmation.

In this investigation, the woman — who has not been identified — and Urias denied the incident was anything more than a verbal altercation, but officers are trained to examine other facts, even when a victim is uncooperative, according to two law enforcement sources.

Urias, a 22-year-old left-hander from Mexico, was arrested around 9:30 p.m. and released on $20,000 bond about four hours later, according to an LAPD arrest log and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s jail inmate locator.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1956 The Orioles, taking a gamble, purchase sore-armed Billy Loes from the Dodgers for a reported $25,000. The 26 year-old right-hander, who will be selected for American League All-Star team next season, will post a 21-30 (.412) record during his four years with Baltimore.
  • 1981 With a 3-2 win over Montreal in front of the largest Dodger Stadium crowd in seven years, rookie sensation Fernando Valenzuela improves his record to 8-0. The 20 year-old southpaw, who has started the season with five shutouts and a minuscule ERA of 0.50, gets the victory when right fielder Pedro Guerrero hits a leadoff game-ending home run off Steve Ratzer in the bottom of the ninth inning at Chavez Ravine.
  • 2011 For the first time since 1914, the Dodgers are defeated after allowing just one hit, losing to the visiting Diamondbacks,1-0. Chad Billingsley, the hard-luck loser, gives up a leadoff double in the second to Stephen Drew, who scores the game’s only run when shortstop Jamey Carroll fails to cover the bag in an attempted pick-off play.

Lineup when available.


May 07

Game 38, 2019

Braves at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: FSSE, SPNLA

The Braves give the ball to LHP Max Fried (4-1, 2.11 ERA) and the Dodgers do the same to LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-1, 2.55 ERA). Fried limited the Padres to one run on four hits with seven strikeouts over seven innings in his best start of the season last time out. Ryu went eight innings against the Giants his last time out, giving up one run on four hits, no walks and six strikeouts. He leads the majors with 0.5 walks per nine innings.

From Monday’s game wrapup:

Buehler is 12-5 in his 30 career starts. No drafted Dodgers pitcher has won that many games in that few starts, including fellow first-rounders Clayton Kershaw, Bob Welch or Chad Billingsley.

In franchise history, only Kenta Maeda, Don Newcombe, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Kaz Ishii and Hideo Nomo rank ahead of Buehler for wins in the first 30 Major League starts, and each played professionally previously in Asia or, in Newcombe’s case, the Negro Leagues.

Additionally, Buehler has limited the opposition to a .195 batting average in those 30 starts, sixth in MLB all-time behind Jose Fernandez (.181), Vida Blue (.181), Nomo (.185), Juan Guzman (.192) and Matt Harvey (.195).

Bellinger won’t play first base for the forseeable future due to the potential for injury when diving for balls. (What, he won’t dive for balls in right field?) Pollock won’t play for six more weeks; he has a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) line in his left arm to transmit antibiotics and cannot play baseball until it’s removed. The antibiotics are to fight the staph infection in his elbow which took him into surgery last week. This particular problem is bizarre; read the whole story.

Buehler struck out eight in Monday’s game:

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1959 At the Los Angeles Coliseum, the Yankees defeat the Dodgers, 6-2, in an exhibition game played to benefit Roy Campanella, who was paralyzed in an auto accident prior to the team moving to the West Coast in 1958. The game, which draws the largest crowd ever for a baseball game, 93,103 fans with another estimated 15,000 turned away from the sellout, begins with an emotional ceremony in which Pee Wee Reese pushes the wheelchair-bound catcher into the darkened stadium that is totally illuminated by fans holding candles or matches.
  • 1960 The Sherry boys become the tenth pair of siblings to appear as batterymates in a major league game when Norm replaces John Roseboro behind the plate in the top of the eighth to catch Larry, who is starting his first inning in relief. The backstop will hit a two-out home run in the bottom of the 11th inning, assuring his brother of a victory in the Dodgers’ 3-2 walk-off win over Philadelphia.
  • 1969 Willie Davis, furious with the Wrigley Field Bleacher Bums because of their continual verbal abuse of him, tells his Dodgers teammates that he wants to hit a home run in the middle of the group, which he does in the sixth inning to tie the score. The LA center fielder exacts a bit more revenge on the heckling horde when his 12th-inning two-run round-tripper proves to be the difference in the 4-2 defeat of the Cubs.
  • 1970 At Shea Stadium, Wes Parker hits a triple off Jim McAndrew to beat the Mets in the tenth inning, 7-4. The three-bagger completes the cycle for the Dodger first baseman.
  • 1991 Darryl Strawberry returns to New York as a Dodger with mixed results. A crowd of 49,118 mostly booing fans watches him hit a two-run home run, and they cheer when he makes the last out of the game with the potential tying and winning runs on base in the 6-5 Mets victory.
  • 2009 The Dodgers fail to improve upon their 13-game winning streak at home to open the season–the victorious span surpassed the 1911 Tigers to set a new major league mark. The 11-9 loss to Washington comes on the same day the team learns about Manny Ramirez, the club’s most productive hitter, being suspended for 50 games after testing positive for a banned substance.
  • 2009 Major League Baseball suspends Manny Ramirez for fifty games after he tests positive for the use of a banned substance. The 36 year-old Dodgers outfielder, who will not be eligible to return to the team until July 3, apologizes to the fans, explaining he did not take steroids, but was given a medication which a doctor thought was okay to be prescribed.
  • 2011 After a first-inning walk in the Dodgers’ 4-2 loss to the Mets, Andre Ethier goes 0-for-4, ending his 30-game hitting streak. The L.A. outfielder falls one game short of the franchise record set in 1969 by Willie Davis, who enjoyed a 31-game hitting streak that season.
  • 2014 Adrian Beltre becomes the fifth player in major league history to hit 100 home runs for three different teams when he goes deep in the Rangers’ 9-2 loss to Colorado at Globe Life Park in Arlington. The 35 year-old third baseman, who joins Alex Rodriguez, Jim Thome, Darrell Evans, and Reggie Jackson in accomplishing the feat, hit 147 homers for the Dodgers (1998-2004) and 103 with the Mariners (2005-09).

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 03

Game 7, 2019

Giants at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: NBCS BA, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA

LHP Derek Holland (0-1, 6.75 ERA) goes for the Giants while RHP Ross Stripling (0-0, 0.00 ERA) makes his second start for the Dodgers. Holland gave up three runs in four innings to the Padres in his first start of the season, while Stripling threw 5 1/3 innings of scoreless ball against the Diamondbacks in his. Holland is 0-3 with a 4.56 ERA in seven career appearances against the Dodgers; Stripling was 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA in four games against the Giants last year.

Bellinger is pleased with his start, naturally, but he’s astonished that yesterday’s game was the 300th of his career.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1968 The Tigers trade left-hander Hank Aguirre to the Dodgers for a player to be named later, minor leaguer Fred Moulder. The All-Star southpaw, better known for being the worst hitter in major league history, will compile a .085 batting average during his 16-year major league career, striking out in an astounding 61% of his 388 at-bats. In his sole season with the Dodgers he appeared in 25 games, threw 39 innings, earned three saves and put up a .069 ERA.
  • 1974 The Indians trade Pedro Guerrero to Dodgers for pitcher Bruce Ellingsen. The 17 year-old infielder/outfielder will compile a .309 batting average and will be named to the All-Star team five times during his 11 seasons with the team.
  • 2008 Twenty minutes before their game, the Dodgers announce reliever Hong-Chih Kuo will start in place of Chad Billingsley, who in turn will be in the bullpen. The unusual move, made due to the threat of rain at the start of the contest, is also employed by the Giants with Merkin Valdez beginning the game on the mound and the announced starter, and eventual winner Tim Lincecum entering the game in the fourth inning.

Lineup when available.

Apr 28

Games 25 & 26, 2018

Game One: Dodgers at Giants, 1:05 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, NBCS Bay Area

The Dodgers’ young right-handed prospect Walker Buehler (0-0, 0.00 ERA) makes the second start of his career. He went five scoreless innings against the Marlins on Monday. The Giants are expected to counter with RHP Chris Stratton (2-1, 2.32 ERA) if he gets back from paternity leave in time. He’s given up two earned runs or fewer in each of his last four starts.

Game Two: Dodgers at Giants, 7:05 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, NBCS Bay Area

In the second game of a rare doubleheader (made necessary by a rainout three weeks ago) the Dodgers send LHP Alex Wood (0-2, 3.72 ERA) out to face the Giants’ RHP Johnny Cueto (2-0, 0.35 ERA). Wood hasn’t yet gotten his velocity back up to where it was last season, but in his last start he scattered six hits over six innings and kept the Nationals at bay long enough for the Dodgers to win late. Cueto has made two starts since coming off the DL and scattered four hits over 13 scoreless innings, striking out 18 and walking only two. He did that against the D-Backs and Angels, neither of which can be called palookas.

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, Game One:


Lineup for Game Two when available.

Apr 03

Game Six, 2018

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 6:40 PM PDT, TV: FS-A, SPNLA

This is Clayton Kershaw’s second start of the season. He actually lost the first, the first loss the lefty has ever sustained in his eight Opening Day outings. He wasn’t exactly lit up, however, giving up only a Joe Panik home run in his six innings of work. He’s 0-1 with a 1.50 ERA. His opponent will be RHP Zack Godley, who’s making his first start of the year.

Here are some observations about Kershaw’s first outing from ESPN’s Buster Olney:

Kershaw threw inside at a higher rate than any pitcher in baseball in 2017, in keeping with a career-long habit of bullying hitters. But on Opening Day, his average fastball was down to a career-low 90.7 mph, and he attacked the outer half of the strike zone in his final few innings, often with off-speed pitches, and kept the Giants’ hitters off-balance, allowing one run in six innings. Some evaluators believe Kershaw would benefit from making the same transition CC Sabathia has made during his career; by consistently using both sides of the plate, he can be less predictable and more difficult for hitters to diagnose.

From ESPN Stats & Information research, no pitcher threw inside at a higher rate last season than Kershaw. He threw 40.2 percent of his pitches inside, a full 3 percent higher than any other player.

Another interesting note about Kershaw’s pitch locations: He threw 70.1 percent of his pitches in the lower half of the strike zone last season, more than 10 percent higher than he has thrown in any other season in the past 10.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1968 The Tigers trade left-hander Hank Aguirre to the Dodgers for a player to be named later, minor leaguer Fred Moulder. The All-Star southpaw, better known for being the worst hitter in major league history, will compile a .085 batting average during his 16-year major league career, striking out in an astounding 61% of his 388 at-bats.
  • 1974 The Indians trade Pedro Guerrero to Dodgers for pitcher Bruce Ellingsen. The 17 year-old infielder/outfielder will compile a .309 batting average and will be named to the All-Star team five times during his 11 seasons with the team.
  • 2008 Twenty minutes before their game, the Dodgers announce reliever Hong-Chih Kuo will start in place of Chad Billingsley, who in turn will be in the bullpen. The unusual move, made due to the threat of rain at the start of the contest, is also employed by the Giants with Merkin Valdez beginning the game on the mound and the announced starter, and eventual winner Tim Lincecum entering the game in the fourth inning.

Lineup when available.


May 14

Game 38, 2017

Dodgers at Rockies, 12:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, ROOTRM, MLBN free game of the day

LHP Julio Urias (0-0, 1.06 ERA), the Dodgers’ youngster, goes to the mound to try to beat the Rockies’ RHP Antonio Senzatela (5-1, 2.86 ERA) and move the Dodgers past the Rockies into sole possession of first place in the NL West.

Urias has made three starts since his April 27 callup and hasn’t allowed more than a run in a start this year, posting a 1.06 ERA and pitching at least five innings each time out. He hasn’t gotten a decision yet. Senzatela was NL Rookie of the Month in April, he’s tied for second best in the league in wins with five (Kershaw leads with six), and his 2.86 ERA is eighth best. He’s gone at least six innings for his last six starts in a row.

Today in Dodgers history:

  • 1981 With a 3-2 win over Montreal in front of the largest Dodger Stadium crowd in seven years, rookie sensation Fernando Valenzuela improves his record to 8-0. The 20 year-old southpaw, who has started the season with five shutouts and a miniscule ERA of 0.50, gets the victory when right fielder Pedro Guerrero hits a lead-off game-ending home run off Steve Ratzer in the bottom of the ninth inning at Chavez Ravine.
  • 2011 For the first time since 1914, the Dodgers are defeated after allowing just one hit, losing to the visiting Diamondbacks,1-0. Chad Billingsley, the hard-luck loser, gives up a leadoff double in the second to Stephen Drew, who scores the game’s only run when shortstop Jamey Carroll fails to cover the bag in an attempted pick-off play.

Lineup when available.

Jul 07

Game 85, 2015

Phillies at Dodgers, 7:10PM PT, TV: SPNLA

Chad Billingsley continues his comeback after nearly two years spent recovering from elbow surgeries. He’s pitched in four games so far this season for the Phillies, compiling an 0-2 record with a 7.71 ERA over 21 innings. He’ll face Brett Anderson, who’s on a bit of a roll. He’s given up only one run in each of his last three starts and won all of them. At 5-4 with a 3.00 ERA in 16 starts and 96 innings, this has been the most work Anderson’s been able to do in a season since 2010.

Lineup when available.

Nov 01

Hot Stove League Talk

The Dodgers bought out Chad Billingsley’s contract for $3M, making him a free agent.

The 30-year-old Billingsley, a former All-Star, is trying to return from two arm operations. He didn’t pitch in 2014 and made only two starts in 2013 before needing Tommy John surgery. While rehabbing this year, he required surgery to repair a partially torn flexor tendon.

A first-round pick in the 2003 First-Year Player Draft, Billingsley went 81-61 with a 3.65 ERA for the Dodgers. He won a career-high 16 games in 2008 and was an All-Star in ’09.

Billingsley becomes the seventh Dodger free agent. In addition to him, Hanley Ramirez, Paul Maholm, Chris Perez, Roberto Hernandez, Kevin Correia and Jamey Wright are also free to negotiate for new deals with any team.

Ramirez’s contract is possibly the biggest decision new boss Andrew Friedman will have to make. Do the Dodgers make him a $15.3M qualifying offer, which ensures they get something in return (a supplemental draft pick between the first and second rounds) if he rejects it and goes elsewhere? He might be worth more than that, especially if he’s willing to move to third base for a new team. The Dodgers have Uribe signed through 2015, so that’s not an option they could easily fulfill. My guess is they make the qualifying offer just to guarantee themselves a player in return when he signs with the Yankees to replace Derek Jeter.

Dan Haren picked up his $10M option to stay with the Dodgers, and Brian Wilson is expected to pick up his for the same amount. Maholm is recovering from knee surgery, Perez was lightly used down the stretch, Hernandez was mostly adequate, Correia wasn’t much help, and Jamey Wright is 40 years old with who knows how much left in his arm.

The team still has more outfielders than it knows what to do with, and it’s also got Joc Pederson pounding on the door to get in, although his cup of coffee at the end of September wasn’t very successful. Ethier and Crawford could be trade bait, but both have very large contracts. Ethier is signed through 2017 with an option for 2018; the balance of the contract is $53.5M through 2017. Crawford is still under terms of the contract he signed with the Red Sox, which has a balance of $62.5M through 2017.

It should be an interesting off-season.

Oct 07

Who might go?

In end-of-the-season news, Josh Beckett announced his retirement after the game. He did better for the team than most of us anticipated he would, I think: 6-6 with a 2.88 ERA and a no-hitter before going down for the year with a torn labrum in his hip.

The Dodgers have a passel of free agents led by Hanley Ramirez. The team has until five days after the World Series to extend what’s called a Qualifying Offer of $15.3M (a number set by the Basic Agreement as the average of the 125 highest contracts by average annual value). That ensures that the Dodgers would get a compensating draft pick if Ramirez rejects the offer and goes elsewhere. On the other hand, he could accept it. If so, he and the Dodgers would be committed to one another for next year.

Other free agents: Chad Billingsley (team option of $14M or a $3M buyout — after two surgeries the Dodgers may elect to buy him out); Paul Maholm, Roberto Hernandez, Kevin Correia and Jamey Wright. Dan Haren has earned a $10M player option but even after Tuesday’s game said he remained undecided whether to play or retire. Brian Wilson has a $10M option he’s expected to accept.