Oct 05

AL Wild Card Game, 2021

Yankees at Red Sox, 5:10 PM PDT, TV: ESPN

RHP Gerrit Cole (16-8, 3.23 ERA) goes for the Yankees and RHP Nathan Eovaldi (11-9, 3.75 ERA) takes the ball for the Red Sox.

October 5 has been an eventful day in baseball history. Among other things, Mickey Owens let Tommy Heinrich’s ball get past him in 1941, Al Gionfriddo caught Joe DiMaggio’s fly ball in 1947, Don Newcombe made the first World Series start by a black pitcher memorable but lost 1-0 on a walk-off HR by Tommy Heinrich (him again!) in 1949, Mickey Mantle tore up his right knee in 1951 when DiMaggio called him off a fly ball, and Glenn Burke high-fived Dusty Baker in 1977, the first time that gesture was seen in MLB.

Yankees’ lineup:

Red Sox lineup:

Oct 02

Game 161, 2021

Brewers at Dodgers, 6:10 PM PDT, TV: Bally Sports Wisconsin, SPNLA

Milwaukee’s Cy Young candidate RHP Corbin Burnes (11-4, 2.29 ERA) takes the mound for the Brewers. He’ll face the Dodgers’ biggest winner, LHP Julio Urías (19-3, 3.01 ERA).

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1947 After scoring six runs in the bottom of the second inning in Game 3, the Dodgers hold on to beat the Yankees, 9-8, for their first victory in the Fall Classic. The Ebbets Field contest takes three hours and five minutes to complete, making it the longest game ever played in World Series history.
  • 1947 In Game 3 of the Fall Classic, Yogi Berra hits the first pinch-hit home run in World Series history. In the seventh inning of a 9-8 loss to the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, the historic homer comes off Ralph Branca.
  • 1952 Carl Erskine strikes out 14 Yankees in Game 3 to establish a new World Series mark. The Dodger hurler’s performance bests the record of A’s Howard Ehmke, who struck out 13 Cubs in Game 1 of the 1929 Fall Classic.
  • 1963 In the Fall Classic opener, Sandy Koufax fans his 15th batter of the game when he strikes out pinch-hitter Harry Bright for the final out of LA’s 5-2 victory over the Yankees. The Dodger lefty, who struck out the first five Bronx Bombers he faced in the game, surpasses Brooklyn’s Carl Erskine’s 1953 World Series mark of 14, also accomplished against New York.

  • 1965 Los Angeles clinches the National League pennant on the next to last day of the season at Dodger Stadium when Sandy Koufax gets his 26th victory, defeating the Braves in the clincher, 3-1. The Dodgers, winning 14 of their last 15 games, finishes the campaign with a 97-65 record, two games ahead of the second-place Giants.
  • 1977 When Dusty Baker hits his 30th homer of the season against the Astros’ J.R. Richard, the Dodgers become the first team in major league history to have four players hit 30 or more home runs. He joins with Steve Garvey (33), Reggie Smith (32), and Ron Cey (30) to complete the foursome.
  • 1981 New York’s once-legendary center fielders, Giant Willie Mays, Dodger Duke Snider, and Yankee Mickey Mantle, are guests on the Warner Wolfe show. The appearance marks the first time all three Hall of Fame outfielders have been together on a television show.
  • 1985 Mets sophomore Dwight Gooden pitches a 5-2 complete-game victory over the Cardinals and will become the seventh pitcher in baseball history to finish the season leading both leagues in wins (24), ERA (1.53), and strikeouts (268). Doc joins Walter Johnson (Senators – 1913), Grover Cleveland Alexander (Phillies – 1915, 1917), Dazzy Vance (Dodgers – 1924), Lefty Grove (A’s -1930, 1931), Hal Newhouser (Tigers – 1945), and Sandy Koufax (Dodgers – 1963, 1965, 1966) in winning the major league pitching triple crown, but he will not follow the six legends into the Hall of Fame.
  • 2004 Steve Finley, for the second time in his career, hits a walk-off grand slam. The center fielder’s ninth-inning bases-loaded home run in the 7-3 win over the Giants at Chavez Ravine clinches the NL West title for the Dodgers. (Ed note: Charles Gottschalk inspired this entry – LP).

Lineup when available.

Aug 18

Game 121, 2021

Pirates at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: ATT SportsNet PIT, SPNLA

RHP JT Brubaker (4-12, 5.13 ERA) pitches for the Pirates. The Dodgers are using multiple members of their bullpen.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1959 Long time baseball executive Branch Rickey is named president of the newly formed Continental League. The 77 year-old former Dodger general manager is currently serving as an advisor with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
  • 1982 In the second longest game in franchise history, the Cubs lose to the Dodgers, 2-1. The Wrigley Field contest, which is played over two days, takes a Dusty Baker sacrifice fly and 21 innings to complete.

A sad note: On this day in 1967 Jack Hamilton of the Angels threw a fastball which shattered Tony Conigliaro’s left cheekbone. The 22 year-old Red Sox slugger missed the rest of 1967 and all of the following year and never came close to the Hall of Fame potential displayed during his first three seasons.

Lineup when available.

May 29

Game 52, 2021

Giants at Dodgers, 4:15 PM PDT, TV: Fox

The visitors send RHP Logan Webb (3-3, 4.09 ERA) to the Dodger Stadium mound to face the home team’s LHP Julio Urias (7-1, 3.03 ERA). Webb is coming off the IL where he’d been with a shoulder strain. Urias has gone 3-0 with a 1.83 ERA in his last three stsrts.

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1905 According to legend, Dodger hurler Elmer Stricklett introduces the spitball, helping Brooklyn to beat the Giants, 4-3. Prior to the 1921 season, the spitball will be totally banned, except for 17 existing spitballers who are allowed to keep throwing the slippery pitch legally until they are retired, including Burleigh Grimes, who will be the last player to legally throw a doctored pitch before retiring in 1934.
  • 1928 At Ebbets Field, Bill Terry hits for the cycle to pace the Giants to a 12-5 victory over the Robins (Dodgers). The New York first baseman is the first player in major league history to include a grand slam as part of the cycle.
  • 1956 In a 10-1 loss to the Dodgers at Forbes Field, Dale Long is held hitless by Don Newcombe, ending his consecutive-game home run streak. The Pirates’ first baseman had established a new major league mark by homering in the last eight Pittsburgh contests.
  • 1979 At Dodger Stadium, Dusty Baker, Rick Sutcliffe, Steve Garvey, Gary Thomasson, Derrel Thomas, Joe Ferguson, and Davey Lopes set a team record by hitting seven home runs as the Dodgers crush the Reds, 17-6.
  • 2000 At the age of 104, Fred Roberts, the oldest living Dodger fan, makes his first visit to Dodger Stadium. Wearing a jersey with the number 104, the World War I veteran cheers as Shawn Green’s sixth inning grand slam helps to beat Al Leiter and the Mets, 4-1.

Lineup when available.

Oct 07

NLDS Game Two, 2020

Marlins vs Braves, 11:08 AM PDT, TV: MLBN

Atlanta leads the series 1-0.

It’ll be RHP Pablo López for the Marlins and RHP Ian Anderson for the Braves. López will be making his first postseason start and Anderson his second.

Padres vs. Dodgers, 6:08 PM PDT, TV: FS1

Los Angeles leads the series 1-0.

The Padres haven’t named a starter yet. Update: It’ll be Zach Davies. LHP Clayton Kershaw will pitch for the Dodgers. Should Kershaw get the win he’d even his career postseason record at 11-11.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1952 In the decisive Game 7, the Yankees beat the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, 4-2, to win their fourth consecutive World Championship. Gil Hodges finishes the Fall Classic hitless in twenty-one at-bats, which had prompted some Brooklyn fans to gather at local churches asking for divine help for their beloved first baseman.
  • 1977 In Game 3 of the NLCS, the Dodgers rally for three runs with none on and two outs in the top of the ninth inning to take a one-run lead in their eventual 6-5 victory over the Phillies at Veterans Stadium. The game appeared to be over when LA’s Davey Lopes is picked off first base for the final out, but a throwing error by Gene Garber advances him to second base, from where he will score the decisive run on Bill Russell’s single.
  • 1978 In Game 4 of the NLCS, Ron Cey scores in the 10th inning on Bill Russell’s two-out game winning single, giving the Dodgers a 4-3 victory over the Phillies and their second consecutive National League pennant. Cey, who walked after the first two batters were retired, advanced into scoring position when Garry Maddox misplayed Dusty Baker’s fly ball in center field.

  • 2001 Barry Bonds extends his major league record for home runs in a season to 73 as he drives a 3-2 first inning knuckleball off Dodger Dennis Springer over the right field fence. The blast also secures two more major league records for the Giants’ left fielder when he surpasses Babe Ruth (1920 – .847) with a .863 season slugging percentage and bests Mark McGwire (1998 – one HR every 7.27 AB) by homering in every 6.52 at-bats.
  • 2006 The Mets defeat Los Angeles at Dodger Stadium, 9-5, to complete a three-game sweep in the NLDS. The Dodgers have won only one postseason game in 13 attempts since beating the A’s in the 1988 World Series.

Today in Padres’ history:

  • 1984 In a game that will be best remembered for Cubs first baseman Leon Durham’s seventh-inning error on an easy ground ball, the Padres win the NLCS when Tony Gwynn’s seventh-inning two-run double breaks a 3-3 tie en route to a 6-3 victory at Jack Murphy Stadium. Chicago had a 2-0 game advantage as well as a 3-0 lead in the decisive Game 5 but was unable to end their thirty-nine year World Series appearance drought.
  • 2001 On the last day of the season, Rickey Henderson bloops a double down the right-field line off Rockies’ hurler John Thomson to become the 25th major leaguer to collect 3000 hits. Tony Gwynn, who is playing in his last major league game and is also a member of the 3000 hit club, meets the Padre outfielder at home plate in front of a sellout crowd Qualcomm Park.

Lineups when available.

Padres’ lineup:

Dodgers’ lineup:

Aug 18

Game 25, 2020

Mariners at Dodgers, 4:10 PM PDT, TV: ROOTNW, SPNLA

The visitors hand the ball to LHP Marco Gonzalez (2-2, 3.97). In his last start he gave up four runs on seven hits in five innings, but he’s been Seattle’s most consistent starter nonetheless. He’ll fact the Dodgers’ RHP Tony Gonsolin (0-0, 0.00 ERA), who’s being tried in the swing role vacated by Ross Stripling so far this year.

What kind of week has Mookie Betts had? Well…

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1959 Long time baseball executive Branch Rickey is named president of the newly formed Continental League. The 77 year-old former Dodger general manager is currently serving as an advisor with the Pittsburgh Pirates. (Editor’s Note: Here’s a pretty good book about the Continental League)
  • 1982 In the second longest game in franchise history, the Cubs lose to the Dodgers, 2-1. The Wrigley Field contest, which is played over two days, takes a Dusty Baker sacrifice fly and 21 innings to complete.

A sad note: On this day in 1967 Jack Hamilton of the Angels threw a fastball which shattered Tony Conigliaro’s left cheekbone. The 22 year-old Red Sox slugger missed the rest of 1967 and all of the following year and never came close to the Hall of Fame potential displayed during his first three seasons.

Lineup when available.

Aug 18

Game 126, 2019

Dodgers at Braves, 10:20 AM PDT, TV: FSSO, SPNLA

RHP Tony Gonsolin (1-1, 3.21 ERA) is back from OKC to make his third big league start. His first was forgettable: he went four innings and gave up six hits and six runs to the Diamondbacks on June 28. His second start was much better: he went six innings and gave up just two hits to the Cardinals on August 5. Dustin May is scheduled to make his first relief appearance of the season when Gonsolin reaches his pitch count. The Braves send LHP ace Max Fried (14-4, 3.78 ERA) out to try to clinch the series. He was a first-round pick of the Padres in 2012 and came over to the Braves in 2014 as part of the deal which sent Justin Upton to San Diego.

Here’s Bellinger’s amazing catch in center field in Saturday’s game:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1959 Long time baseball executive Branch Rickey is named president of the newly formed Continental League. The 77 year-old former Dodger general manager is currently serving as an advisor with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
  • 1982 In the second longest game in franchise history, the Cubs lose to the Dodgers, 2-1. The Wrigley Field contest, which is played over two days, takes a Dusty Baker sacrifice fly and 21 innings to complete.

A sad note: On this day in 1967 Jack Hamilton of the Angels threw a fastball which shattered Tony Conigliaro’s left cheekbone. The 22 year-old Red Sox slugger missed the rest of 1967 and all of the following year and never came close to the Hall of Fame potential displayed during his first three seasons.

Lineup when available.

May 29

Game 56, 2019

Mets at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SNY, SPNLA

The Mets send RHP Noah Syndergaard (3-4, 4.93 ERA) to the mound to face the Dodgers’ RHP Walker Buehler (5-1, 3.58 ERA). Syndergaard is not having a good season, whether due to mechanics as his manager thinks or due to “mental issues” as the pitcher himself thinks. Either way, he’s not been very good. He’s got a 5.02 ERA in his last nine starts (he’s made 11 this season). Buehler, on the other hand, has steadily improved his ERA (and W-L record) since his first three starts of the year, and even with a less-than-effective start against Cincinnati on May 18 when he gave up four runs (one earned) he’s given up just two earned runs in his last 19 innings while striking out 20 and walking just two.

Cody Bellinger = Babe Ruth? Maybe statistically.

Why can you get mahi-mahi tacos, crispy coconut shrimp, clam chowder, tri-tip nachos and a burrito packed with steak, shrimp and avocado at Petco Park in addition to the usual stadium chow? Mostly, more kitchens.

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1905 According to legend, Dodger hurler Elmer Stricklett introduces the spitball, helping Brooklyn to beat the Giants, 4-3. Prior to the 1921 season, the spitball will be totally banned, except for 17 existing spitballers who are allowed to keep throwing the slippery pitch legally until they are retired, including Burleigh Grimes, who will be the last player to legally throw a doctored pitch before retiring in 1934.
  • 1928 At Ebbets Field, Bill Terry hits for the cycle to pace the Giants to a 12-5 victory over the Robins (Dodgers). The New York first baseman is the first player in major league history to include a grand slam as part of the cycle.
  • 1956 In a 10-1 loss to the Dodgers at Forbes Field, Dale Long is held hitless by Don Newcombe, ending his consecutive-game home run streak. The Pirates’ first baseman had established a new major league mark by homering in the last eight Pittsburgh contests.
  • 1979 At Dodger Stadium, Dusty Baker, Rick Sutcliffe, Steve Garvey, Gary Thomasson, Derrel Thomas, Joe Ferguson, and Davey Lopes set a team record by hitting seven home runs as the Dodgers crush the Reds, 17-6.
  • 2000 At the age of 104, Fred Roberts, the oldest living Dodger fan, makes his first visit to Dodger Stadium. Wearing a jersey with the number 104, the World War I veteran cheers as Shawn Green’s sixth inning grand slam helps to beat Al Leiter and the Mets, 4-1.

Lineup when available.


Apr 26

Game 28, 2019

Pirates at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, ATTSportsNet-PIT

The visiting Buccos send RHP Chris Archer (1-1, 2.74 ERA) to the Dodger Stadium mound to face the Dodgers’ LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (2-1, 3.10 ERA). Archer says the seven days rest he had before his last start was too much and his “stuff” wasn’t sharp, which cost him the game. Ryu made two mistakes in his last start and they both resulted in Christian Yelich home runs. The Dodgers were shut out in that game and Ryu was a hard-luck loser.

Remember the Dodgers’ four 30-HR guys in 1977? Remember that Dusty Baker had to homer on the last day of the season to reach that mark? Here’s a tidbit about that which I’d never heard before.

Entering the final weekend, Dusty Baker needed one more to join Reggie Smith, Ron Cey and Steve Garvey as the first foursome from one team to clout 30 in the same season. Houston was the opponent at Dodger Stadium. On Friday night before the first game, Reggie used the clubhouse phone, called the Astros dressing room, and asked to speak with James Rodney Richard. The 6-feet-8 Richard dominated the Dodgers more than any pitcher in the National League, beating them 13 straight times over the final 4½ years of his career. When J.R. got on the phone, Smith told him a lie, “Dusty is over here saying he’s going to hit his 30th off you Sunday.” When Reggie hung up, he went to Baker and told him what he had done, and a terrified Dusty replied, “Reggie, you are going to get me killed.”

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 2001 After two and a half years in the post, Kevin Malone resigns as the general manager of the Dodgers. Despite having the league’s largest payroll, Los Angeles has failed to make the playoffs during his tenure.
  • 2008 Brad Penny’s 96-mph fastball is missed by Dodger batterymate Russell Martin and knocks out umpire Kerwin Danley. After the players are asked to leave the field, the home plate arbitrator, who lost consciousness briefly, is placed on a stretcher and leaves the Dodgers-Rockies game in an ambulance.
  • 2008 “We can’t tell you to survive the storms of life, we can tell you to dance in the rain, and you can do it. You really can do it. Very difficult, but possible.” – VIN SCULLY, delivering the commencement address at Pepperdine University. (Take note of the graduates’ headgear.)

    Vin Scully receives an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Pepperdine University in Malibu, the institution’s highest honor. The Dodgers’ Hall of Fame broadcaster delivers a stirring commencement address to the 2008 Class of Seaver College, telling the graduates that achieving dreams may be “very difficult, but possible”.

Lineup when available.


Oct 02

NL Wild Card Game, 2018

Rockies at Cubs, 5:08 PM PDT, TV: ESPN

The Cubs at least got to sleep in their own beds after losing their tiebreaker game to the Brewers yesterday. After losing yesterday’s tiebreaker to the Dodgers, the Rockies had to get on an airplane and fly to Chicago from Los Angeles, after flying from Denver to LA Sunday night.

The visiting Rockies send LHP Kyle Freeland (17-7, 2.85 ERA) to the mound for his third career start against the Cubs. He’ll face LHP Jon Lester (18-6, 3.32 ERA), who will be making his 22nd postseason appearance and second Wild Card Game start.

Today in Cubs’ history:

  • 1932 The Yankees win their 12th consecutive World Series game and sweep the Fall Classic for the third time. At Wrigley Field, the Bronx Bombers bang out 19 hits as they club the Cubs, 13-6.
  • 1940 The Sullivans become the first father and son to have played in a World Series when Billy Jr. is the Tigers backstop in Game 1 of the Fall Classic at Crosley Field. The Detroit catcher’s dad, Bill Sr., appeared in the postseason in 1906, playing the same position for the White Sox when he went 0-for-21 in the Hitless Wonders’ six-game triumph over the Cubs.
  • 1952 Carl Erskine strikes out 14 Yankees in Game 3 to establish a new World Series mark. The Dodger hurler’s performance bests the record of A’s Howard Ehmke, who struck out 13 Cubs in Game 1 of 1929 Fall Classic.
  • 2001 Slugging Sammy Sosa becomes the first player in baseball history to slug 60 home runs in three seasons. The Cubs’ outfielder connects off Lance Davis in the first inning of the team’s 5-4 loss to Cincinnati at Wrigley Field to reach the milestone.
  • 2006 Chicago’s veep and GM Jim Hendry announces that the Cubs have declined to renew Dusty Baker’s contract to return as the team’s manager. During his four-year reign in the northside dugout, the 57-year-old skipper compiled a 322-326 record, including a 66-96 campaign last season.
  • 2012 In a matchup of 100-loss teams, only the second occurrence in major league history, the Astros (55-105) beat the Cubs (60-100) at Wrigley Field, 3-0. In 1962, the woeful 58-101 Chicago club played host to the expansion Mets, sporting a 39-118 record en route to setting the all-time modern era record for futility.

The Rockies have made four previous post-season appearances, none on October 1.

Cubs’ lineup:


Rockies’ lineup: