Aug 01

Game 106, 2017

Dodgers at Braves, 4:35 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSSE

The Dodgers send RHP Kenta Maeda (9-4, 4.09 ERA) to the mound in the Braves’ new ballpark. He’ll face a right-handed pitcher named Lucas Sims who’ll be making his MLB debut.

Maeda has had trouble getting past the fifth inning this season, doing so only three times in 16 starts. Sims had a 2.84 ERA in his last four starts at AAA Gwinnett.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1906 After pitching 10.2 innings of no-hit ball, Harry McIntire yields a single to Pirates second baseman Claude Ritchey. The Dodgers and McIntire lose the game in the 13th on an unearned run, 1-0.
  • 1924 Dazzy Vance strikes out seven consecutive batters to establish a major league record when the Brooklyn Robins defeat the Cubs at Ebbets Field, 4-0. The future Hall of Famer, who will compile a 28-6 record for the Brooks this season, will lead the National League in strikeouts with 262.
  • 1957 Gil Hodges, in a 12-3 win over the Cubs, hits his 13th and last career grand slam in Brooklyn Dodger history. The first baseman’s bases-loaded shot off Dick Littlefield establishes a new National League record, previously shared by Rogers Hornsby and Ralph Kiner.
  • 2011 After popping out in a pinch-hitting appearance, Craig Counsell remains without a hit in his last 45 at-bats, tying the longest single-season hitless streak by a position player in history, established by Brooklyn backstop Bill Bergen in 1909. The major league record is 0-for-70, established in 1970 by Bob Buhl, a pitcher who toiled with the Braves and Cubs that season.
  • 2015 Clayton Kershaw strikes out Mike Trout looking with a wicked curveball, marking the first time that reigning MVPs have faced one another in a major league game. The interleague contest between the two LA teams ends with Dodger southpaw keeping the Angel outfielder 0-for-3 while hurling eight innings in the team’s 3-1 victory over the Halos at Chavez Ravine.

In non-Dodgers’ history of note, on this day in 1978 Pete Rose, making the last out when he strikes out on a Gene Garber change-up, goes 0-for-4, ending his 44-game hitting streak, one contest shy of breaking the National League record. The Reds third baseman has tied Willie Keeler’s 1897 National League record last night with a hit off future Hall of Famer Phil Niekro. Rose was very angry about Garber’s pitch selection afterward, as I recall.

LHP Tony Watson has been activated. To make room on the active roster LHP Edward Paredes was sent to OKC.

Lineup:

Jul 25

Game 101, 2017

Twins at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSNO

The Twins trot out RHP Jose Berrios (9-3, 3.50 ERA) to face the Dodgers’ RHP Kenta Maeda (8-4, 4.23 ERA). Berrios is 2-2 in his last five outings, logging a 5.26 ERA. Maeda has gone 7-2 with one save in his last 13 appearances, posting a 3.09 ERA while holding batters to a .227 average and striking out 61 against just 17 walks.

Which Dodgers have been hit-by-pitch the most? Alex Cora’s rank on this list surprised me, but I’d forgotten he spent five full years with the Dodgers and parts of two others early in his career.

Chris Taylor is hitting .318, which puts him seventh among National League batting leaders. Justin Turner remains atop the list at .369.

This date in Dodgers history:

  • 1962 At Sportsman’s Park, Stan Musial surpasses Giants’ legend Mel Ott as the National League’s all-time RBI leader. ‘Stan the Man’s’ two-run home run off Don Drysdale in a 5-2 loss to the Dodgers gives the Cardinals’ right fielder 1,862 career runs batted in with the Redbirds. (Ed. — He’s still seventh on the all-time list, behind Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Alex Rodriguez, Cap Anson, Barry Bonds and Lou Gehrig)

Non-Dodgers history which amuses me as a lapsed guitarist: 2010 The Baseball Hall of Fame honors John Fogerty for his classic rock song “Centerfield”. At the induction ceremonies, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer performs his 1985 hit and then donates his baseball bat shaped-guitar to the Cooperstown museum. Here’s that song with the man playing that guitar, which I’d never seen before.

Lineup when available.

Jul 24

Game 100, 2017

Twins at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSNO

The Twins’s newly-signed RHP Bartolo Colon (2-9, 8.19 ERA) will face the Dodgers’ LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (3-6, 4.21 ERA).

Colon was released by the Braves at the end of June. The Twins are his tenth MLB team; he’s 235-171 with a 4.02 ERA in his 20-year career, all but 4 years of it in the American League. Ryu is coming off the DL where he’s been for three weeks with a bruised foot.

Kershaw may be out 4-6 weeks, says a “baseball source” inside MLB. However, it’s also reported that there won’t be a firm time frame until the Dodgers’ go-to back specialist, Dr. Robert Watkins, has examined Kershaw. Presumably that will happen/has happened today.

Kershaw isn’t the only Dodger pitcher headed for the DL; Brandon McCarthy is as well. He’s got a blister. Kenta Maeda will take his start Tuesday night.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1909 At Washington Park, the Superbas sweep a twin bill from the visiting Cardinals with identical 1-0 scores. Brooklyn’s southpaw Nap Rucker, who will finish second in the NL with 200 strikeouts, whiffs 16 Redbirds in one of the contests.
  • 1931 For the second time in ten days, Babe Herman hits for the cycle. The Dodger outfielder joins “Long John” Reilly and Bob Meusel as one of only three ‘tricyclists’ to have accomplished the feat of collecting a single, double, triple, and home run in one game three times.
  • 1965 Unbeknownst to him at the time, 75 year-old Mets skipper Casey Stengel, who compiled a managerial record of 1,905-1,842 with the Dodgers, Braves, Yankees, and Mets, manages his final baseball game, a 5-1 loss to Philadelphia at Shea Stadium. After leaving a party after midnight at Toots Shor’s, the ‘Old Perfesser’ loses his balance and fractures his left hip, resulting in the unexpected retirement with the team.
  • 1968 ChiSox reliever Hoyt Wilhelm breaks Cy Young’s record when he makes his 907th career appearance, pitching a third of an inning in which he gives up a run on two hits to be on the short-side of the team’s 3-2 loss to Oakland. The 45 year-old knuckleballer, who will retire in 1972 after pitching in 1,070 games, will finish his 21-year major league career with a 143-122 (.540) won-loss record and 228 saves, hurling for the Giants, Cardinals, Indians, Orioles, White Sox, Angels, Braves, Cubs, and Dodgers.
  • 1970 Tommy Agee steals home with two outs in the bottom of the tenth inning, giving the Mets a 2-1 walk-off victory over the Dodgers at Shea Stadium. After reaching on a fielder’s choice, the New York center fielder stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch, before scoring the winning run with his thievery of home plate.
  • 1977 After his two-out foul pop-up is dropped by Mets’ right fielder Bruce Boisclair, Davey Lopes responds with a game-ending three-run home run off Bob Apodaca. The L.A. second baseman’s ninth inning dramatics provide the Dodgers with a 5-3 win, and spoils the opportunity for a victory for Nino Espinosa, who left the game needing just one more out for a complete-game victory.
  • 1993 In a 5-4 loss to the Dodgers at Chavez Ravine, Mets right-hander Anthony Young extends his record losing streak to 27 games. The latest defeat is the result of the hard-luck hurler walking Dave Hansen in with the winning run with two outs in the 10th inning.
  • 1993 Following the game at Dodger Stadium, Vince Coleman tosses a M-80 from a car, resulting in reported injuries to three fans in the Chavez Ravine parking lot, including an 11 year-old boy and a two year-old girl. The Mets’ player was a passenger in the 1991 Jeep Cherokee driven by LA outfielder Eric Davis, who acknowledges Coleman flipped the firecracker out of his vehicle as a ‘joke’, but not into a crowd of people.

Non-Dodger history of note: today is the anniversary of The Pine Tar Incident with George Brett.

Lineup when available.

Jul 19

Game 95, 2017

Dodgers at White Sox, 5:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, WGN

RHP Kenta Maeda (7-4, 4.38 ERA) makes his 14th start of the year. He’s only gone past five innings in three of those fourteen, but he’s won three of his last four decisions. He’ll be opposed by YALHP Carlos Rodon (1-2, 4.32 ERA), who made only one start in Spring Training before going on the DL with left biceps bursitis and has made three starts since coming off it on June 28.

Vin Scully performed with the LA Philharmonic last week and again last night.

Many an uncommon man and woman have read it in performances with proper forceful meaning during the history of Copland’s stirring patriotic justification of the American ideal, a 15-minute oration for narrator and orchestra written in early 1942 in the wake of Pearl Harbor.

Not a word has gone out of date. But ours is such a fragmented whom-do-you-trust age, even Lincoln can be readily and shamelessly misinterpreted. So it proved an inspiration for Gustavo Dudamel and the Los Angeles Philharmonic to invite the most trusted voice in all of L.A. to recite “Lincoln Portrait” at the Hollywood Bowl on Thursday night. The one person we can all agree about. Vin Scully.

Here are some video highlights.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1977 Pitcher Don Sutton wins All-Star MVP honors after helping the National League to a 7-5 victory over the American League. Sutton is the N.L.’s starting pitcher at Yankee Stadium and delivers three scoreless innings of work. He becomes only the third player in franchise history to be named All-Star MVP. Garvey also contributes to the N.L.’s victory with a home run in the third inning.
  • 1993 Outfielder Raul Mondesi makes his major league debut and singles in his first at-bat. He goes on to bat .291 with four home runs and 10 RBI in 42 games. The following season, he is named National League Rookie of the Year after batting .306 with 16 homers and 56 RBI.

Lineup:

Jul 07

Game 88, 2017

Royals at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSKC

The Royals send RHP Jason Hammel (4-7, 5.08 ERA) to the mound to face the Dodgers’ Kenta Maeda (6-4, 4.56 ERA).

Hammel hasn’t gotten past the sixth inning in either of his last two starts. In his most recent one he gave up seven runs (six earned) on nine hits and two walks in 5 1/3 innings in a loss to the Twins. He is 2-7 with a 5.00 ERA in 18 career games (14 starts) against the Dodgers. Maeda had a rough time in his last start when he gave up five runs on eight hits in 3 2/3 innings in a loss to the Padres. In his previous four appearances he had a 1.06 ERA. Maeda has never faced the Royals before.

In case you missed it, Scott Van Slyke was recalled from OKC to replace Grant Dayton, who went on the 10-day DL with a stiff neck. Also, as expected, Alex Wood will replace Clayton Kershaw at the All Star Game.

Another thing you might have missed: yesterday was Dave Roberts Bobblehead night, and his kids had a big part in it. Daughter Emme sang the National Anthem and his son, Cole, threw out the ceremonial first pitch — a strike. Then the two kids teamed up to say “It’s Time for Dodger Baseball!”

This date 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 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 02

Game 84, 2017

Dodgers at Padres, 1:40 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD

The Dodgers ask RHP Kenta Maeda (6-3, 4.15 ERA) to pitch them to a sweep of the Padres, who’ll counter with RHP Jhoulys Chacin (6-7, 4.76 ERA).

Maeda had an excellent start his last time out, pitching seven shutout innings against the Angels last Wednesday. He faced the Padres and Chacin in San Diego in May, going five innings, allowing only one run and striking out eight in a no-decision. Chacin has been exceptional at home this season, putting up a 1.83 ERA at Petco Park. He had five consecutive quality starts in June. Against the Dodgers his results have been mixed: on Opening Day in LA they got nine runs off him in 3 1/3 innings, but in the May game against Maeda he held them to one run in 5 1/3 innings. He too got no decision.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1962 Johnny Podres ties a major league mark record, striking out eight consecutive batters in LA’s 5-1 victory over Philadelphia. The 29 year-old southpaw’s streak begins with the third out in the top fourth frame and ends after the first out in the seventh inning of the Dodger Stadium contest.
  • 1995 Dodger right hander Hideo Nomo, who is leading the National League in strikeouts, becomes the first player from Japan to be selected for the major league All-Star game.

Today is also the anniversary of the 1963 16-inning marathon in which 42-year-old Warren Spahn and 25-year-old Juan Marichal pitched 15 scoreless innings against one another before Willie Mays homered in the 16th off Spahn.

Lineup when available.

Jun 27

Game 79, 2017

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

RHP Jesse Chavez (5-7, 5.15 ERA) goes for the Angels while RHP Kenta Maeda (5-3, 4.62 ERA) makes a spot start for the Dodgers.

Chavez appeared in 23 games for the Dodgers last year, all in relief. He was acquired from the Blue Jays in a trade for Mike Bolsinger and let go to free agency in the off-season. In his career he’s faced the Dodgers 11 times with a 3.32 ERA. Maeda has been in the bullpen since a poor outing on June 4, but he’s shown signs of improvement according to Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts. “I think over the last three appearances, he’s throwing the baseball really well,” Roberts said.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1940 To honor the lyricist of Take Me Out to the Ballgame, Jack Norworth Day is celebrated at Brooklyn’s Ebbets Field. Norworth and his partner Albert Von Tilzer, who wrote the music, had never seen a game when they created the song in 1908.
  • 1980 Dodger southpaw Jerry Reuss, facing only 28 batters, no-hits the Giants at Candlestick Park, 8-0. Shortstop Bill Russell’s errant throw on Jack Clark’s grounder with two outs in the first inning deprives the 31 year-old left-hander from tossing a perfect game.
  • 2011 Citing MLB refusal to sign off on a transaction that would provide the team with $385 million, the Dodgers file for bankruptcy protection in a Delaware court. Although there will be no disruption to the day-to-day status of the franchise, the Chapter 11 financing permits the Dodgers to use $150 million for daily operations and gives owner Frank McCourt time to seek a media deal that will ensure the club’s long-term financial stability.

Lineup when available.

Jun 18

Game 70, 2017

Dodgers at Reds, 10:10 AM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-O

The Dodgers hope to sweep the series with this game, and they’ll send RHP Kenta Maeda (4-3, 4.95 ERA) out to try to win it. He’ll face old acquaintance Bronson Arroyo (3-5, 7.01 ERA).

Maeda has struggled this season, with only two quality starts in the ten games he’s started, but his last outing was a four-inning save against the Reds on June 9. If he pitches to that level again he may rejoin the Dodgers’ starting rotation.

Arroyo never threw a pitch for the Dodgers, but he came over from the Braves in the July 2015 trade in which they acquired Alex Wood, Mat Latos, Luis Avilan, Jose Peraza and Jim Johnson. He was injured at the time and the Braves were dumping his salary. He was granted free agency in November of that year and landed with the Reds. He may not last very long if his performance doesn’t improve, because Homer Bailey and Brandon Finnegan can come off the DL by the end of June.

Notes:

Dodgers rookie Cody Bellinger has been clobbering the ball in June. On Tuesday, he became the fastest player to record at least four multihomer games. According to Statcast, as of Saturday, Bellinger is fifth in MLB in barrel rate (23.5 percent) and currently leads left-handed batters in hard contact rate against left-handed pitchers this season. His teammate Corey Seager ranks second in hard contact rate. Bellinger hit his 19th homer on Saturday.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1938 After accepting GM Larry MacPhail’s offer to coach first base, Babe Ruth wears a Dodger uniform for the first time as a coach and takes batting practice with the team. The ‘Bambino’ will quit at the end of the season, ending his ties with major league baseball.
  • 1940 Dodger Ducky Medwick, acquired in a trade less than a week ago, is beaned by former Cardinal teammate Bob Bowman and needs to be carried off the field on a stretcher. Brooklyn president Lee MacPhail accuses the St. Louis pitcher of deliberately hitting Medwick in the head because the two had quarreled in a hotel elevator prior to the game.
  • 1996 Brant Brown hits the first three home runs of his career on the same day. The 25 year-old rookie goes deep as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning off Chan Ho Park in a 9-6 loss to the Dodgers in the opener of a Wrigley Field twin bill, but his two additional round-trippers contribute to Chicago’s 7-4 victory in the nightcap.
  • 2014 With the only batter reaching base as a result of a throwing error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez in the seventh inning, Clayton Kershaw no-hits the Rockies at Dodger Stadium, striking out a career-high 15 batters. The left-hander’s teammate Josh Beckett also threw a no-hitter 24 days ago, making it the shortest span between no-hitters by a team since the Reds’ Johnny Vander Meer accomplished it in consecutive starts, four days apart, in 1938.

Vinnie calls Kershaw’s no-hitter:

Lineup when available.

Jun 07

Game 61, 2017

Nationals at Dodgers, 12:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, MASN, MLBN (out-of-market only)

This looks like a wonderful pitcher’s duel, so each pitcher will probably be shelled and out of the game by the third inning. It’s RHP Stephen Strasburg (7-1, 2.91 ERA) going for the Nats and LHP Clayton Kershaw (7-2, 2.28 ERA) for the Dodgers. These two were supposed to meet last year during the regular season but Strasburg strained his upper back and was scratched.

Strasburg has won his last three starts, striking out 33 and putting up a 1.33 ERA. Kershaw hasn’t had a decision in his last three starts.

Alex Wood will come off the DL this weekend and take either Maeda’s or Ryu’s spot in the rotation. In another bit of intriguing news, Eibner has thrown six bullpen sessions.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1954 Dodger catcher Roy Campanella steals home in the top of the 12th inning in a 7-5 victory over St. Louis at Sportsman’s Park. Campy had added an insurance run with an eighth inning round-tripper, but the Redbirds scored three times in the bottom of the ninth to tie the score.
  • 1957 Howard University awards honorary degrees of Doctor of Laws to the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and recently retired Dodgers infielder Jackie Robinson. In the coming years, the former baseball great and the Baptist minister will often appear together at Civil Rights rallies, fundraising events, and demonstrations.
  • 1982 Joining Lou Gehrig, Everett Scott, Billy Williams, and Joe Sewell, Dodger infielder Steve Garvey becomes only the fifth player in major league history to play in 1,000 consecutive games. The first baseman, establishing a National League record, will appear in 1207 consecutive games, before the streak ends next season when he breaks his thumb in a collision at home plate, playing for the Padres.

Lineup when available.

Jun 04

Game 58, 2017

Dodgers at Brewers, 11:10 AM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSWI, Telemundo

RHP Kenta Maeda (4-2, 5.21 ERA) will pitch for the Dodgers and RHP Zach Davies (5-3, 5.18 ERA) goes for the Brewers.

Maeda has had two successive starts in which he’s given up three runs in the first inning and held the opposition scoreless in the next four. He’s 1-0 with a 1.46 ERA lifetime against the Brewers. Davies gave up two earned runs on six hits over five innings to the Mets his last time out but got no decision for his trouble. He’s only faced the Dodgers twice, both times in 2016. He gave up HRs to Turner, Grandal, Trayce Thompson and Seager in those games.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1940 The Cardinals play their first night game at home, losing to Brooklyn, 10-1, despite Joe Medwick’s 5-for-5 performance that included three doubles. The honor of hosting the first evening tilt in St. Louis that took place on May 24 was given to the Browns, after the two teams finally agreed to split the $150,000 cost of installing lights at Sportsman’s Park, the ballpark they share.
  • 1957 At a seventy-five minute show-down meeting at City Hall with Walter O’Malley and Horace Stoneham, the club presidents of the Dodgers and Giants, respectively, Mayor Robert Wagner is told by the owners neither club has a commitment to move out of New York – and none to stay in the Big Apple. The teams, who have been given permission by the National League to explore the possibility of moving their franchises to the West Coast, are assured by His Honor that the city will be of assistance in replacing the Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field, the aging ballparks the clubs call home.
  • 1964 At Connie Mack Stadium, Sandy Koufax throws his third no-hitter in three years, blanking the Phillies 3-0. The Dodgers’ southpaw, who will add a perfect game to his resume next season, joins Bob Feller as the only other modern major leaguer to pitch three career hitless games.
  • 1968 Don Drysdale, pitching his sixth consecutive shutout, defeats the Pirates, 5-0. The Dodger right-hander will extend his major league record scoreless streak to 58.2 innings before yielding a run in his next start. Later that evening at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, Robert Kennedy, giving his victory speech for his win in the California primary before being fatally shot, tells his followers in the packed ballroom, “I’d like to express my high regard to Don Drysdale, who pitched his sixth straight shutout tonight.”
  • 1972 The Dodgers retire Roy Campanella’s uniform number 39. Campy, who won the MVP three times catching for Brooklyn in the fifties, joins Jackie Robinson (42) and Sandy Koufax (32) to be honored in this manner.
  • 1976 In an 11-0 victory at Dodger Stadium, Mets right fielder Dave Kingman hits three home runs. Sky King’s two-run dinger and two three-run round trippers drive in eight runs, a new club record.
  • 1990 En route to a 6-0 complete-game victory, 22 year-old Dodger right-hander Ramon Martinez limits Atlanta to three hits. Pedro’s older brother, who will finish the season with a 20-6 record, strikes out 18 batters during the contest.
  • 1998 The Dodgers trade the 1995 National League Rookie of the Year Hideo Nomo (2-7 with a 5.05 ERA) and reliever Brad Clontz to the Mets for pitchers Dave Mlicki and Greg McMichael.

Lineup when available.