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.


May 04

Game 35, 2019

Dodgers at Padres, 5:40 PM PDT, TV: FSSD, SPNLA

LHP Rich Hill (0-0, 1.50 ERA) makes his second start of the season for the Dodgers, while LHP Joey Lucchesi (3-2, 4.94 ERA) goes for the Padres. In Hill’s first start he went six innings, struck out six, walked none and gave up one earned run. This season Lucchesi has had outings in which he’s given up seven, five and five runs in a total of fifteen innings. Last year he gave up 13 runs in 12 2/3 innings while making three starts against the Dodgers. Oddly, one of his starts against them was last year on this date when the two teams met in Monterrey, Mexico.

Sad news about The Bison: The Reds released him today. He was hitting .200 with one HR and five RBI for Cincinnati and was on the 10-day IL. I suspect he’ll get picked up by an AL team looking for a DH at some point this year.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1919 A SRO crowd attends the first-ever major league game played on a Sunday in Brooklyn. The Ebbets Field contest, in which the Dodgers beat the Braves, 6-2, was made possible when the New York Legislature passed the Sunday Baseball Bill into law.
  • 1966 In a 6-1 victory over L.A. at Candlestick Park, Willie Mays becomes the all-time National League home run leader when he strokes his 512th career round-tripper off Dodger starter Claude Osteen. The San Francisco center fielder passes another Giant, breaking the mark established by Mel Ott in 1946.
  • 1976 Illinois state Rep. Eugene F. Schlickman, co-author of the House of Representative Resolution 747 declaring today as Rick Monday Day, will be in attendance when Los Angeles vice president and GM Al Campanis presents the Cub outfielder with the flag he saved that was about to burned on the field at Dodger Stadium. Last month, the former Marine reservist, in a game played in Los Angeles, ran in from his position, swiping the ‘Stars and Stripes’ away from a father and a son, who were intent on setting it afire.
  • 2009 With their 7-2 win over Arizona, the Dodgers establish a National League record for consecutive victories to open a season at home. Their 11-0 start surpasses the NL mark shared by the 1918 Giants, 1970 Cubs, and 1983 Atlanta Braves, and is one shy of the major-league record set by the Tigers in 1911.

Lineup when available.


Bellinger separated his shoulder in last night’s game and is day-to-day.

May 03

Game 34, 2019

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

The Dodgers send LHP Clayton Kershaw (1-0, 2.25 ERA) out to face the Padres’ LHP Eric Lauer (2-3, 4.41 ERA) in the opener of a three-game series. While Kershaw’s velocity is down some, his sliders are sharp and he’s been able to vary their speeds. Lauer has been bitten by the “one bad inning” bug, which has precluded him going longer than six innings in any game this season.

Bellinger has evolved into a complete hitter, Matt Kelly of MLB.com says.

Pollock will be out for several months. He’s having surgery to remove hardware left from previous operations from his elbow.

Manager Dave Roberts would not provide an estimated time frame for Pollock’s return, but said it should be this season. Typical hardware removals require one to two months of recovery before a player can return to competition to assure the holes in the bone where the screws were removed are fully healed. Hardware is sometimes left on the bone for added protection, and because removal can be more trouble than it’s worth.

This will be the third operation on Pollock’s right elbow since 2010. The previous two required five-month recoveries, but Roberts said that isn’t expected to be the case this time.

The dilemma that is Urias’s youthful arm and how to protect it while at the same time getting its benefit.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1947 In a controversial move, Branch Rickey trades five Dodgers, including southerner Kirby Higbe, to the Pirates for five-foot, six-inch left-hand-hitting outfielder Al Gionfriddo and $100,000. Some believe ‘the Mahatma’ made the deal to send a message to the team about his commitment to breaking the color barrier and his support of Jackie Robinson, the first black to play in the major leagues this century. It’s a darned good move, considering that Gionfriddo made a game-saving catch of a DiMaggio fly ball in Game 6 of that fall’s World Series.

  • 2004 Similar to last season, the aging outfielder Rickey Henderson re-signs with the Atlantic League’s Bears, hoping for a shot of returning to the big leagues. The 45 year-old future Hall of Famer batted .339, hit eight home runs, drove in 33 runs, scored 52 runs, and stole nine bases for the Newark team last season before joining the Dodgers in July.
  • 2009 Defeating San Diego 2-1 in 10 innings, the Dodgers tie a franchise record, winning their ninth consecutive decision at home from the start of the season. The 1946 club also reeled off nine straight victories at Brooklyn’s Ebbets Field at the beginning of the post-war campaign.

Lineup when available.


May 01

Game 33, 2019

Dodgers at Giants, 6:45 PM PDT, TV: NBCS BA, SPNLA

It’ll be the Dodgers’ LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-1, 2.96 ERA) versus the Giants’ LHP Madison Bumgarner (1-4, 4.30 ERA). Ryu went seven innings against the Pirates in his last start, striking out ten and walking none. This season he’s struck out 33 and walked two. Bumgarner gave up 11 hits in 5 2/3 innings against the Yankees last Friday. He’s 15-12 with a 2.39 ERA in 33 career appearances against the Dodgers.

Here’s a recap of the Dodgers’ offensive explosion yesterday:

So, how was your first month of the season, Cody Bellinger?

On this day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1906 At Brooklyn’s Washington Park, Philadelphia southpaw John Lush strikes out 11 batters en route to throwing a 6-0 no-hitter against the Superbas, a team that will become known as the Dodgers in 1911. There will not be another no-hitter by a Phillies pitcher until Jim Bunning’s perfect game against the Mets in 1964.
  • 1920 The longest game ever played ends after 26 innings in a 1-1 tie, with Brooklyn Robin right-hander Leon Cadore and the Braves hurler Joe Oeschger, also right-handed, both go the distance for their respective clubs. Boston third baseman Charlie Pick establishes the major league record for hitless at-bats in one game, going 0-for-11 in the marathon.
  • 1965 Tommy Davis, trying to break up a double play, dislocates and breaks his ankle sliding into second base in the fourth inning of the team’s 4-2 victory over the Giants at Dodger Stadium. The two-time National League batting champ will not play again this year until he appears as a pinch-hitter in the season finale.
  • 1972 Philadelphia starter Dick Selma goes the distance, three-hitting the Dodgers at Chavez Ravine, 2-1. The victory is the fifth consecutive complete-game thrown by a Phillies starter, with Steve Carlton, Woody Fryman, Barry Lersch, and Bill Champion each finishing their game without help from the bullpen in team’s previous four contests.
  • 1974 Tom Seaver strikes out 16 Dodgers, giving up only three hits in twelve innings of work, but gets a no-decision when the Mets lose the Chavez Ravine contest in 14 innings, 2-1. Steve Garvey strokes a walk-off single to center field off Harry Parker, scoring Billy Buckner with the winning run.
  • 2000 The Braves establish a franchise-record 14th straight victory, with a 2-1 win at Dodger Stadium. Quilvio Veras’ third-inning homer proves to be the difference.
  • 2009 With two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Duaner Sanchez walks Russell Martin, who checks his swing on a full count with the bases loaded, bringing home the winning run in L.A.’s 1-0 triumph over the Padres. The win keeps the Dodgers undefeated at home, extending their record at Chavez Ravine to 8-0 with their ‘walk-off’ victory.
  • 2012 With the final payment received on the record $2.15-billion purchase price, Frank McCourt’s turbulent era of the Dodger ownership comes to an end. The team’s new ownership group, fronted by Magic Johnson and incoming club president Stan Kasten, includes Mark Walter, chief executive of the Chicago-based Guggenheim Financial, who arranged the financing and holds a controlling interest in the franchise.

Lineup when available.


Apr 27

Game 29,2019

Pirates at Dodgers, 6:10 PM PDT, TV: ATT SportsNet PIT, KTLA, SPNLA

The visitors’ RHP Joe Musgrove (1-1, 1.59 ERA) takes the hill against the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (0-0, 2.77 ERA). All four of Musgrove’s appearances this year have been quality starts (definition: complete six innings and permit no more than three earned runs). Kershaw’s two games this season were also quality starts. Last time out he uncharacteristically walked four men, but his opponents are hitting only .159 against him, so the walks didn’t hurt.

Barnesy’s home run yesterday:

Also:


Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1981 Fernandomania continues to explode at Chavez Ravine when Dodger rookie sensation Fernando Valenzuela pitches his fourth shutout in five starts. The 20 year-old Mexican southpaw, who is batting over .400, beats the Giants, 5-0, and lowers his ERA to a microscopic 0.20.
  • 2004 At Dodger Stadium, Mike Piazza ties Carlton Fisk for the most career homers by a catcher as he hits Hideo Nomo’s sixth-inning pitch into the stands for his 351st round-tripper as a backstop. The homer, which was his 362nd overall, moves the Mets’ star past Yankees’ Hall of Famer Joe DiMaggio on the all-time list.
  • 2007 On the night in which the ceremonial first pitch is thrown by his three sons, Trevor Hoffman is unable to hold on to a two run lead when the Dodgers score three in the ninth and eventually beat the Padres, 6-5. It’s ‘Trevor Time Desk Clock’ Night, and the usually reliable Padres closer blows the save, thanks to some shady defense, for the second consecutive game.
  • 2010 The suddenly streaking Mets win their sixth consecutive game with a doubleheader sweep of the Dodgers, 4-0 and 10-5. The victories mark the first time since August 28, 1971 that the club has taken both ends of a twin bill from L.A.

Lineup when available.


Apr 23

Game 25, 2019

Dodgers at Cubs, 5:05 PM PDT, TV: MLBN (out-of-market only), NBCSCH, SPNLA

RHP Kenta Maeda (3-1, 3.80 ERA) goes for the Dodgers while LHP José Quintana (2-1, 3.43 ERA) pitches for the Cubs. Maeda will be working on six days rest, which bodes well for the Dodgers: he’s 10-4 lifetime when he has that much time between appearances. Quintana has held his opponents scoreless for 14-plus innings in his last two starts, striking out 18 and walking just one.

There’s a very flattering profile of Cody Bellinger at MLB.com as part of its “Young Stars Week.”

Bellinger’s overall approach at the plate has changed in ways that set him up to continue being an offensive menace, too. His strikeout rate has slashed in half, down to 12 percent from his career average of 24.2 percent. His walk rate is up a few ticks, too, in part due to pitchers approaching him more cautiously and in part due to improved discipline — he’s swinging at just 21.7 percent of pitches out of the strike zone, down nearly six percent from last season. And when he swings, he’s missed less often than anyone in the NL, with a league-best contact rate of 87.7 percent.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1958 In a 7-6 loss to Chicago at the LA Coliseum, two Dodger mainstays from Brooklyn reach career milestones. First baseman Gil Hodges, who will finish his 18-year major league tenure with 370 home runs, hits his 300th career round-tripper, and Captain Pee Wee Reese, a future Hall of Fame shortstop, plays in his 2000th game.
  • 1999 Fernando Tatis becomes the only player in baseball history to hit two grand slams in one inning when he collects eight RBIs in one frame to breaks the old record of six. The Cardinal third baseman hits both off Dodger starter Chan Ho Park in an 11-run third of the team’s 12-5 victory at Chavez Ravine.
  • 2000 The Dodgers complete a sweep of the Reds to notch their 1,000th win over baseball’s oldest professional franchise. Since 1970, Los Angeles is the only National League franchise to play over .500 ball (120-115) in Cincinnati (Riverfront Stadium/Cinergy Field).

Lineup:


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.

Dec 14

Roberts on rosters

Newly-inked manager Dave Roberts used his media availability requirement at the Winter Meetings on Tuesday of this week to answer a few questions:

On the position player side, Roberts said he expects Cody Bellinger to be an everyday player in 2019.

“Just the way he can defend and how he can affect a game and impact a game with his legs, with the bat, the goal is to have him out there and handle lefties and righties,” Roberts said.

“I think for Cody, it was a tough year,” Roberts said. “It was a grind for him with a slow start. But if you look at the surface line, it wasn’t bad. Now you kind of introduce the defense and the versatility, for a second-year player, still pretty good.”

But if you have Bellinger in the lineup every day, what position will he play? CF or 1B? “Reply hazy, try again.”

Well, what about Muncy? Kiké? CT3?

Roberts said Muncy, Chris Taylor and Kiké Hernández will all be options at second base, with Muncy also getting at-bats at first.

On the pitching side, Roberts said he sees Kenta Maeda and Alex Wood, who transitioned to bullpen roles by the end of 2018, as starters in 2019. Roberts said Ross Stripling will also compete for a starting job after an All-Star 2018 season.

I think Roberts was in a good mood, as shown by this:

On former Diamondbacks All-Star first baseman Paul Goldschmidt going to the Cardinals:

“Goldy, he can stay in the (National League) Central as long as he wants. I’m trying to work on getting him to the American League next. But Goldy, one of my favorite players to watch. To get him out of our division is great. Hope he’s happy. I’ve got to send him flowers.”

Oct 30

Gather ’round the stove, y’all

We go into the offseason earlier than we hoped and without the ultimate prize, so who’s coming back to ensure we get back to the Series for the third consecutive year?

…the Dodgers retain their nucleus. Hill will return for the final year of a three-year deal he signed after 2016. Justin Turner and Jansen will be back. Max Muncy, this year’s breakout star, will be back and cost-controlled. Seager is expected to be healthy. A young nucleus of position players that includes Cody Bellinger, Chris Taylor, Kiké Hernández and Joc Pederson will also come back, with Andrew Toles and Alex Verdugo perhaps ready to take on bigger roles.

Kershaw or not, the rotation could post a combination of Buehler and Julio Urías that is currently a combined 45 years old.

Besides Kershaw, other free agents include Machado, Freese, Dozier, and Grandal. Despite the current dissatisfaction with Grandal,

…only J.T. Realmuto was a more valuable catcher by Baseball Prospectus’ WARP metric, and he is coming off the best offensive season of his career. He will be paid, and handsomely, as the Dodgers will look to find a catching partner to join the light-hitting Austin Barnes.

Beyond Kershaw’s decision, which must be made this week, the biggest question is whether Dave Roberts will manage the team next year. You’d think three consecutive playoff appearances and two trips to the World Series would make that question ludicrous, but baseball owners have done screwier things*.

To win the World Series, the Dodgers would have had to play better than they had for any seven-game stretch all season. Roberts would have had to nail every single decision, which he did not. Puig would have had to throw to the cutoff man, which he did not. Their pitchers would have had to pitch to their strengths, which they did not. Their hitters would have had to, well, hit.

“You have to realize that we are a really good team to get to go to the World Series two years in a row,” Kershaw said. “It might not be a personnel thing. It might just be a ‘play better’ thing.”

So, what’s next? Here are selected events from Major League Baseball’s calendar:

  • Nov. 2, 2018 Deadline for teams to extend qualifying offer to own free agents, 5 p.m. ET
  • Nov. 8-15, 2018 Japan All-Star Tour (including CT3)
  • Nov. 12, 2018 Deadline for players to accept or reject qualifying offer, 5 p.m. ET
  • Nov. 30, 2018 Non-tender deadline
  • Dec. 9-13, 2018 Winter Meetings in Las Vegas
  • Dec. 13, 2018 Rule 5 Draft

*Back in 1964 the Cardinals’ owner Gussie Busch fired the team’s entire senior management in August, leaving field manager Johnny Keane as sole survivor for the time. Shortly after the Cardinals won the World Series, Keane surprised management by resigning (and then being hired by the Yankees, who’d just lost to Keane’s former team).

Oct 19

NLCS Game Six, 2018


Dodgers at Brewers, 5:39 PM PDT, TV: FS1

The Dodgers send Game Two starter Hyun-Jin Ryu to the mound in Milwaukee to face the Brewers’ Wade Miley. Presumably Miley’s not exhausted from his appearance in Game Five. Ryu went 4 1/3 innings in his start last Saturday and gave up two runs on six hits in a game the Dodgers won 4-3. Miley started that game and pitched 5 2/3 innings of two-hit scoreless baseball.

How have Bellinger’s adjustments helped or hurt him this season?

Are the Dodgers’ stealing the Brewers’ signs? Some Milwaukee players think so.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1981 The first Canadian pennant hopes are dashed when Dodger Rick Monday’s ninth inning two-out dramatic home run beats the Expos, 2-1, in the deciding game of the NLCS. It will be the first and last time in franchise history the team makes it into the postseason until 2012, when the Washington Nationals, the team’s new name and home for the past seven seasons, finishes first in the National League East Division.
  • 1993 The Dodgers trade future Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez to the Expos for second baseman Delino DeShields, who will hit .241 during his three seasons with Los Angeles. The 21 year-old Dominican right-hander will win 55 of 88 decisions in his four-year tenure with Montreal before being dealt to Boston prior to the 1998 campaign.

Today in Brewers’ history:

  • 1982 The Cardinals crush the Brewers 13-1 in Game Six of the World Series behind home runs from Darrell Porter and Keith Hernandez off Don Sutton and a complete game 4-hitter by John Stuper.

Lineups when available.

Dodgers’ lineup:


Brewers’ lineup: