Jul 10

Game 91, 2018

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

Today’s menu has two lefties, Rich Hill (2-3, 4.56 ERA) for the Dodgers and Eric Lauer (4-5, 4.54 ERA) for the Friars. Hill seems to have recovered from his blister problems (knock on wood) and is making his regular turn despite sustaining a stiff neck in a headfirst slide his last time out. Lauer is a rookie who’s 3-2 with a 2.63 ERA since the first of June.

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1943 Some of the Dodgers, led by infielder Arky Vaughan, threaten not to play in today’s game to protest the suspension of their teammate Bobo Newsome by manager Leo Durocher. The Ebbets Field contest begins ten minutes late. Brooklyn plundered the Pirates, 23-6, and in a few days, Newsome, who had argued with his skipper over a pitch selection in a previous game, is traded to the Browns for Archie McKain and Fritz Ostermueller.
  • 1953 With Roy Campanella’s home run off Giants hurler Sal Maglie, the Dodgers establish a National League record, homering in their 24th consecutive game. Campy’s homer is the only run Brooklyn scores as the Giants extend their winning streak to seven with the 6-1 victory.
  • 1979 With his team trailing the Padres 5-3 in the bottom of the ninth with two outs at Veterans Stadium, Phillies pinch hitter Del Unser hits a three-run walk-off home run, giving the team a 6-5 comeback victory. The dramatic dinger makes Del Unser only the second player in major league history to hit a homer in three consecutive at bats as a pinch hitter, a feat also accomplished by Lee Lacy of the Dodgers last season.
  • 1984 At San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, Dodger southpaw Fernando Valenzuela and Mets rookie Dwight Gooden combine to strike out six consecutive American League All-Stars on the 50th anniversary of Carl Hubbell’s memorable 1934 Midsummer Classic performance of setting down five future Hall of Famers on strikes. Dwight Gooden, at the age of 19, becomes the youngest player ever to participate in an All-Star Game.

In one of the most famous events in baseball history, at the All Star Game in 1934 in New York’s Polo Grounds, Giants pitcher Carl Hubbell faces a starting lineup comprised of nine eventual Hall of Famers. ‘King Carl’ is up to the unique occurrence in baseball history when he fans five batters in a row after letting the first two hitters reach base: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons, and Joe Cronin.

Lineup when available.


Jul 06

Game 87, 2018

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

The Dodgers take the 40-mile drive southeast to Angels Stadium for Game One of the Freeway Series. They’ll send RHP Kenta Maeda (5-5, 3.36 ERA) to the mound for his third career start against the Halos. He pitched well enough to win in his last start against the Rockies, but German Marquez was better, holding the Dodgers to two hits and one run over eight innings. The Angels counter with Felix Peña (1-0, 3.71 ERA), who will be making just his fourth big league start tonight. He got his first win as a starter a week ago when he pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings against the Orioles while giving up just five hits. He’s still learning: he’s only pitched 60 1/3 innings in the major leagues since his debut in 2016.

Down on the farm: Verdugo and Toles are hot at OKC, AAA All-Stars include four OKC players and two Dodger prospects lead their respective leagues (Texas and California) in home runs.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1938 At Crosley Field, Yankees’ hurler Lefty Gomez is defeated for the first time in four All-Star starts as the NL wins the All-Star game 4-1. National League shortstop Leo Durocher becomes the first Dodger to start in an All-Star Game and gets a ‘bunt’ home run.
  • 1953 In his first major league start, 24 year-old right-hander Al Worthington throws a two-hitter, blanking the Pirates, 6-0. The Giants’ rookie, known as ‘Red’, will become the first National League freshman to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, when he repeats the feat in his next outing, also blanking the Dodgers, 6-0.
  • 2000 Vin Scully, 72, is voted the No. 1 sportscaster of the 20th century by members of the American Sportscasters Association. The Dodger veteran broadcaster’s 51-year career has included play-by-play of 25 Fall Classics and a dozen All-Star Games.

Lineup when available.


Apr 21

Game 19, 2018

Nationals at Dodgers, 6:10 PM PDT, TV: SPNLA, MASN 2, MLBN (out-of-market only)

Save us, Hyun-Jin Ryu! The lefty is 2-0 with a 2.87 ERA, tied for the team lead in wins with Kenta Maeda (2-1). His last time out he struck out nine Padres while going six innings and allowing two runs on three hits. He’ll face the Nationals’ RHP Stephen Strasburg (2-1, 3.08 ERA). Of the Dodgers’ likely starters, only Matt Kemp has hit Strasburg well, with a .421 BA over 19 ABs. None of the Nats’ hitters have as many as ten ABs against Ryu.

Mr. Puig has challenged himself and his fans:


Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1925 No games are played in the National League due to the funeral for Dodger owner Charles Ebbets, who died three days ago. Edward McKeever, who became president of the Brooklyn club upon the death of the owner, contracts pneumonia at the services for his business partner and will be dead in eight days.
  • 1948 Returning after serving his one-year suspension from baseball, Dodger manager Leo Durocher uses 24 players in a 9-5 loss to the Giants. The controversial ‘Lip’ had been suspended last April by commissioner Happy Chandler for an assortment of actions deemed detrimental to baseball.
  • 1967 For the first time since LA opened their stadium in Chavez Ravine in 1962, the team is rained out at home. The postponement of their scheduled game against St. Louis ends a streak of 737 consecutive contests at Dodger Stadium without a washout.
  • 2000 In Cincinnati, the Dodger/Red game is delayed for 27 minutes due to the umpires’ equipment being accidentally shipped to New York. Replacement gear is secured from a downtown store, but due to heavy traffic, a police escort is needed to get the goods to Cinergy Field.
  • 2016 Jake Arrieta tosses a no-hitter in the Cubs’ 16-0 rout over the Reds at Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park. The Chicago right-handed ace becomes only the second pitcher, joining Johnny Vander Meer, who threw consecutive no-hitters in 1938, ever to go unbeaten between no-hit games, having not recorded a loss in his last 17 regular-season starts since he threw a no-no against the Dodgers last season.

You know, fans say the Cubs’ trade of Lou Brock to the Cardinals for Ernie Broglio was possibly the worst trade ever, but I think this one comes very close: in 1966 the Phillies obtain Larry Jackson and Bob Buhl from the Cubs in exchange for future Hall of Fame hurler Ferguson Jenkins, outfielder Adolfo Phillips, and first baseman/outfielder John Herrnstein. The pair of right-handers will post a 47-53 record collectively for Philadelphia as Chicago’s new moundsman will win twenty or more games for six consecutive seasons starting in 1967.

Lineup when available.


Apr 18

Game 17, 2018

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

The Dodgers try to sweep their first series of the year behind RHP Kenta Maeda (1-1, 2.08 ERA). He’ll be opposed by RHP Luis Perdomo (1-1, 4.91 ERA), who’s coming off a five-game suspension for his part in a brawl with the Rockies last week. Maeda had 13 days between starts his last time out, which may have been a factor in his shortest outing ever. He lasted only 2 2/3 innings against Arizona last Friday and walked two of the three leadoff guys he faced. Perdomo is ostensibly a sinker-ball pitcher, but while his strikeouts are up this season his ground-ball rate has fallen.

Roberts and Jansen are both “concerned” about his performance so far.



On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1925 At his Waldorf-Astoria apartment, Dodgers’ owner Charles H. Ebbets dies of a heart attack at the age of 65. Later in the day, his team opens the home season in Brooklyn losing to the Giants at Ebbets Field, 7-0.
  • 1939 In Brooklyn, Red Barber calls the action in the first broadcast of a regular-season Dodger game, a 7-3 loss to New York at Ebbets Field. The future Hall of Fame announcer was brought in from Cincinnati by the team’s new president, Larry MacPhail, who had hired the ‘Ol Redhead’ when he was in a similar post with the Reds.
  • 1947 Dodger president Branch Rickey names team scout Burt Shotton to replace Leo Durocher, who was suspended ten days ago by Commissioner Happy Chandler for acts “unbecoming to a major league manager.” Brooklyn’s new 62 year-old skipper reluctantly takes over the team two games into the season and will manage the club for one year in his street clothes along with wearing the team’s hat and jacket.
  • 1950 Vin Scully calls the first game of his illustrious 67-year career with the Dodgers, detailing Brooklyn’s 9-1 defeat to the Phillies on Opening Day at Philadelphia’s Shibe Park. The 22-year old broadcaster, who will be awarded the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award by Bud Selig in 2014, will become the team’s primary announcer just three seasons later.
  • 1950 The Phillies play their first game with name official changed back from Blue Jays, routing the Dodgers at Shibe Park, 9-1. The team wears red pinstriped uniforms designed by manager Eddie Sawyer that are reminiscent of club’s look in the early 1900s.

  • 1952 On Opening Day in Brooklyn, Willie Mays is knocked unconscious when he smashes into the Ebbets Field wall after chasing pinch hitter Bob Morgan’s seventh-inning, two-out base-loaded line drive into the gap in left field. All three Dodgers base runners cross the plate but do not score when the motionless Giants center fielder comes to his feet and jogs into the dugout, apparently unhurt, having held onto the ball after making a fantastic catch for the third out to end the inning.
  • 1958 At the Los Angeles Coliseum in front of a National League record crowd of 78,672, the Dodgers play their first game in the City of Angels. Carl Erskine gets the win, besting Al Worthington and the Giants, 6-5.
  • 1959 Branch Rickey, former general manager of the Cardinals, Dodgers, and Pirates, is appointed the president of the Continental League. The third potential major league never materializes, but helps to accelerate the expansion of the existing leagues, including putting a National League team in New York to fill the void created by the Giants’ and the Dodgers’ departure to the west coast in 1958.
  • 1964 L.A. southpaw Sandy Koufax throws the second of his two career immaculate innings when he strikes out the side on nine pitches. Although Leo Cardenas, Johnny Edwards, and Jim Maloney all strike out quickly in the top of the third inning, Cincinnati will score all of the game’s runs in the next frame, thanks to a three-run homer hit by Deron Johnson, to beat the Dodgers in the Chavez Ravine contest, 3-0.
  • 1966 Dodgers shortstop Maury Wills singles to center off future Hall of Famer Robin Roberts, becoming the first batter to hit on artificial turf in a major league game. The Astrodome’s new playing surface, called Chemgrass initially by its manufacturer, the Monsanto Company, couldn’t be made quickly enough, so the season begins with the artificial material only on the infield with the outfield remaining painted dirt until July.
  • 2008 The Dodgers announce Joe Beimel has been selected by fans, in an online poll during Spring Training, as the player whose likeness will now be used in an August 12 bobblehead promotion. The 30 year-old southpaw reliever, considered a long shot for the honor, gets the nod due to a strong internet campaign orchestrated by his parents, Ron and Marge.

    Lineup when available.


  • Oct 17

    ALCS Game Four, 2017

    Astros at Yankees, 2:00 PM PT, TV: FS1

    Despite yesterday’s resounding win, the Yankees are still down a game in this series. Today RHP Lance McCullers (7-4, 4.25 ERA) takes the hill for the Astros versus the Yankees’ RHP Sonny Gray (10-12, 3.55 ERA). This will be McCullers’ third postseason appearance; he went 6 1/3 innings in a start against the Royals in the 2015 ALDS and he pitched 3 innings of relief last week against the Red Sox, giving up two runs on three hits. Gray will be making his fourth postseason appearance; he started two games for the As in 2013 and started Game One of this year’s ALDS, going just 3 1/3 innings against the Indians while giving up three runs on three hits and four walks.

    Today in Astros’ history:

    • 2004 In Game 4 of the NLCS at Minute Maid Park, Carlos Beltran goes deep in the seventh inning, giving the Astros an eventual 6-5 victory over the Cardinals. With the round-trippers, the Houston center fielder sets a new postseason record, hitting a homer in five consecutive play-off games, and ties Barry Bonds’ 2002 mark with a total of eight play-off round tippers.
    • 2005 The juiced Minute Maid Park crowd, anticipating the Astros’ first National League crown, after the first two batters are quickly retired, is ‘pulperized’ when Albert Pujols hits a two out three-run ninth inning homer. A two-strike single stroked by David Eckstein and a walk worked out by Jim Edmonds set the stage for the Cardinals’ dramatic 5-4 comeback.

    Today in Yankees’ history:

    • 1964 The Yankees, who finished with a 99-63 record, fire Yogi Berra after the team drops the World Series to the Cardinals in seven games. The 39 year-old dismissed skipper will join the crosstown Mets as a coach, becoming team’s the manager in 1972, following Gil Hodges’ unexpected death in spring training. At the same time Johnny Keane, who had been rumored in August to be replaced as the Cardinals’ manager by Leo Durocher before the Redbirds surged to win the World Series, surprises team owner Gussie Busch and GM Bob Howsam with a letter of resignation that he had written at the end of September during the height of the pennant race with Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Cincinnati. The former St. Louis skipper will take the Yankee job, which opens as the result of the firing of Yogi Berra.
    • 1985 Billy Martin, who had become the team’s skipper for the fourth time after the Yankees fired Yogi Berra in April, is replaced by Lou Piniella. “Billy the Kid’ piloted the 97-64 Bronx Bombers to a second place finish, ending the season two games behind Toronto.
    • 2000 David Justice’s three-run homer propels the Yankees to their record 37th American League pennant in a come-from-behind victory over the Mariners, 9-7. The victory sets up a Subway Series in New York for the first time in 44 years.
    • 2003 Early editions of the N.Y. Post include an editorial claiming the Yankees lose to Boston and couldn’t get the job done in Game 7 of the ALCS. Although the Bronx Bombers did trail the Red Sox, the team rallies to beat their arch rival in 11 innings, 6-5.
    Sep 06

    Game 139, 2017

    Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

    Believe it or not, the Dodgers could clinch a postseason spot as early as tonight. The scenario has permutations galore and most of them have to do with the Brewers and Cubs. Put simply, if the Dodgers win tonight’s game and the Cubs and Brewers both lose, the Dodgers are guaranteed a spot because neither of those teams can match the Dodgers’ record of 93 wins.

    The streaks end tonight. So saith I, Master of all I survey. In order to make it so, the Dodgers will send their parfait genteel Japanese knight Kenta Maeda, he of the 12-6 W-L record and the 4.19 ERA, to the mound to do battle with the D-Backs’ Taijuan Walker, who brings an 8-7 record with a 3.42 ERA to the game. Oddly, Maeda has 122 strikeouts for the season and Walker has 120. Advantage, Dodgers!

    The D-Backs hammered Maeda last week in Phoenix, scoring seven runs on eight hits and knocking him out after three innings. Walker shut out the Rockies for five innings in his last start.

    Today in Dodgers’ history:

    • 1924 In a game that features a total of only six hits, the Brooklyn Robins beat Boston, 1-0, behind the strong two-hit performance of right-hander Bill Doak. The Braves Field victory is the team’s 15th consecutive win, establishing the longest winning streak in franchise history.
    • 1953 With Giants manager Leo Durocher yelling “stick it in his ear”, Ruben Gomez hits Carl Furillo, the National League’s leading hitter, on the wrist with a pitch. After taking first base, the Dodgers right fielder bolts into the opposing dugout to choke ‘Leo the Lip’, but in the melee, the knuckle on his little finger is fractured, putting an end to his season.
    • 1981 Fernando Valenzuela ties the National League’s rookie record for shutouts, blanking St. Louis, 5-0, for his seventh whitewash of the season. The Dodger lefty shares the mark with Irv Young (1905 Beaneaters), Grover Alexander (1911 Phillies), and Jerry Koosman (1968 Mets).
    • 1985 In a matchup of aces that lives up its advanced billing, Dwight Gooden and Fernando Valenzuela hook up in one of the best pitchers’ duel in recent memory. New York beats Los Angeles at Chavez Ravine, 2-0, thanks to Darryl Strawberry’s two-run double on a day that the 20 year-old Mets right-hander strikes out 10 batters, throwing nine shutout innings, while the Dodgers southpaw pitches 11 innings without allowing a run.
    • 1996 Brett Butler returns to the Dodger lineup four months after having surgery for throat cancer. The 39 year-old center fielder scores the decisive run in the team’s 3-2 victory over the Bucs.

    Also on this date in big league history, in 1995 Cal Ripken breaks Lou Gehrig’s consecutive game record, playing in his 2,131st straight game. When the game becomes official in the middle of the fifth inning, the new ‘Iron Man’ takes a victory lap around Camden Yards during the 22-minute standing ovation from the sellout crowd, including President Bill Clinton.

    Lineup when available.

    Jul 26

    Game 102, 2017

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

    RHP Ervin Santana (11-7, 3.26 ERA) goes for the Twins and RHP Brock Stewart (0-0, 0.00 ERA) makes a spot start for the Dodgers.

    Santana has hit a rough patch in his last five outings, going 2-3 with a 4.25 ERA while walking 11 batters. He only got through 3 1/3 innings last Friday against the Tigers and gave up five runs. Stewart, 25, has been used out of the bullpen this season, appearing in six games and throwing 13 innings. He’s filling in for Kershaw and McCarthy, who are both on the DL. He made five starts for the Dodgers in 2016, going 2-2 with a 5.79 ERA in 28 innings. He’s on a 50-60 pitch limit.

    This date in Dodgers’ history:

    • 1900 In Brooklyn, a sheriff seizes the St. Louis share of gate receipts to reimburse Gus Weyhing, recently released by the Cardinals after posting a 3-4 record in eight starts with the team, who claims to have been cheated out of ten days of pay. Next week, the right-hander, known as Cannonball by his teammates, will sign with the Superbas as a free agent.
    • 1948 Former Dodger skipper Leo Durocher, who left the team ten days ago, makes his first appearance at Ebbets Field since taking over the Giants. The return of ‘the Lip’ is less-than-triumphant when his new team drops a 13-4 decision to Brooklyn.
    • 1951 In a 9-1 victory over the Cubs at Wrigley Field, Jim Russell becomes the first player in major league history to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in a game in two different games. The Dodger outfielder’s accomplishment will be surpassed in 1956 when Yankee slugger Mickey Mantle goes deep both right and left-handed in the same game for a third time.
    • 1960 The Phillies end their scoreless streak of thirty-eight consecutive innings when Johnny Callison plates Tony Gonzalez with a sixth-inning single in the team’s 4-3 victory over the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Philadelphia’s drought began when the team failed to score in the last six frames of a 3-0 win against the Giants, and continued when they were shutout in three straight games ( 2-0, 2-0, and 9-0) by the Dodgers in Los Angeles.
    • 1991 Mark Gardner no-hits the Dodgers for nine innings, but Los Angeles wins the game in the bottom of the tenth on two singles off the Expos’ starter and Darryl Strawberry’s RBI single off reliever Jeff Fassero. It’s the first time the Dodgers had been held hitless at home for nine innings since Johnny Vander Meer’s second straight no-hitter in 1938.

    Lineup:

    Jul 16

    Game 93, 2017

    Dodgers at Marlins, 10:10 AM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-F

    The Dodgers go for a sweep behind LHP Rich Hill (5-4, 3.69 ERA). He’ll face the Marlins’ LHP Chris O’Grady (1-0, 5.06 ERA).

    Hill has struck out 27 in his last 21 innings and gone 2-1 with a 1.71 ERA. All three of those games were quality starts. O’Grady makes his second career start. His first was against the Giants on July 8, when he went 5 1/3 innings, gave up five hits and three runs and got the win. He’s taking the place of Edinson Volquez, who was scheduled to come off the 10-day DL but whose patellar tendinitis hasn’t healed.

    This day in Dodgers’ history:

    • 1913 In a game against the Cubs, Superbas’ second baseman George Cutshaw handles 14 chances without an error. The infielder’s defensive prowess helps Brooklyn beat Chicago at Ebbets Field, 4-2.
    • 1948 Brooklyn’s Branch Rickey agrees on a deal with Giants owner Horace Stoneham that releases his manager Leo Durocher to become the Giants’ skipper, replacing the popular Mel Ott. Burt Shotton will take the ‘Lip’s’ place in the Dodger dugout.

    On this date in 1990 Steve Lyons embarrassed himself dreadfully by dropping his uniform pants while standing at first base after sliding into the bag to beat out a bunt.

    Lineup when available.

    Jul 06

    Game 87, 2017

    Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

    The D-Backs try to salvage one game of the series by sending out a left-handed pitcher! It’s true, it’s true! He’s Robby Ray (8-4, 3.06 ERA), who’s going to the ASG by virtue of his fellow players voting him in. Ray is 6-1 with a 1.81 ERA in his last eight starts. The Dodgers, not to be outmaneuvered, send out their own LHP, Rich Hill (5-4, 4.00 ERA), who’s made his last two starts of the year his best ones. In the last one he shut out the Padres for seven innings, giving up just four hits, striking out 11 and walking just one.

    Kiké Hernandez is 7-for-18 lifetime against Ray with 3 HRs and five RBI, so expect him in the Dodgers’ lineup.

    This date in Dodgers’ history:

    • 1938 At Crosley Field, Yankees’ hurler Lefty Gomez is defeated for the first time in four All-Star starts as the NL wins the All-Star game 4-1. National League shortstop Leo Durocher becomes the first Dodger to start in an All-Star Game and gets a ‘bunt’ home run
    • 1953 In his first major league start, 24 year-old right-hander Al Worthington throws a two-hitter, blanking the Pirates, 6-0. The Giants’ rookie, known as ‘Red’, will become the first National League freshman to throw consecutive shutouts at the start of a career, when he repeats the feat in his next outing, also blanking the Dodgers, 6-0.
    • 2000 Vin Scully, 72, is voted the No. 1 sportscaster of the 20th century by members of the American Sportscasters Association. The Dodger veteran broadcaster’s 51-year career has included play-by-play of 25 Fall Classics and 12 All-Star games.

    Lineup when available.