Oct 11

ALDS Game Five, 2017

Yankees at Indians, 5:00 PM PT, TV: FS1

Game Five doesn’t have the resonance Game Seven does, but it’s the end of the line for one of these teams. The Yankees have to feel pretty good that they’ve gotten this far after fighting through the Wild Card Game to get into the series, while the Indians are probably annoyed that they lost two straight in the Bronx after taking a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series.

The Yankees send C.C. Sabathia to the mound to face the Indians’ ace Corey Kluber. Again. This is a rematch of Game Two’s pitchers. In that game Kluber got knocked out early but the Indians came back from a five-run deficit and won in 13 innings. Sabathia gave the Yankees 5 1/3 innings and gave up four runs. The Indians also lost their slugger Edwin Encarnacion to an ankle sprain in the first inning and he hasn’t played since.

Today in baseball history:

  • 1948 In Game 6 of the Fall Classic, the Indians beat Boston at Braves Field, 4-3, to capture the team’s second World Series title in franchise history. Bob Lemon gets the win, with Gene Bearden pitching the final one and two-thirds innings to earn the save.
  • 1965 In Game 5, a 7-0 victory over the Twins at Dodger Stadium, Willie Davis becomes the second player to steal three bases in a World Series game. The L.A. center fielder joins Pirates shortstop Honus Wagner, who accomplished the feat on the same date 56 years ago against Detroit in Game 3 of the 1909 Fall Classic.
  • 1975 As the first host of Saturday Night Live, George Carlin compares baseball to football in the opening monologue of the ground-breaking show. The comedian jokes the national pastime a gentler game, portraying the sport as one which is pastoral and played in a park as opposed to football, in which the objective is to march downfield and penetrate enemy territory in a stadium.

  • 1999 An ailing Pedro Martinez, with both starters ineffective in the decisive Game 5 of the ALCS and the score tied at 8-8 in the fourth, enters the game and doesn’t yield another hit to the Indians for the next six innings. Troy O’Leary collects a grand slam and a three-run home run, both following an intentional pass to Nomar Garciaparra, contributing to the Red Sox’ 12-8 victory at Cleveland’s Jacobs Field.
Oct 06

NLDS Games One

First Game:Cubs at Nationals, 4:30 PM PT, TV: TBS

The Cubs’ RHP Kyle Hendricks (7-5, 3.03 ERA) faces off against RHP Stephen Strasburg (15-4, 2.52 ERA) of the Nationals. Hendricks started Games Three and Seven of last year’s World Series. In the final game he went 4 2/3 innings, gave up four hits and two runs and left without the decision. Strasburg didn’t pitch last postseason and famously sat out the 2012 playoffs as well. He made his only playoff start in 2014.

Second Game: Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 7:30 PM PT, TV: TBS

The Diamondbacks used both of their aces in the Wild Card Game, so they’ll ask RHP Taijuan Walker (9-9, 3.49 ERA) to get them of on the right foot against the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (18-4, 2.31). Walker was 2-0 with a 3.24 ERA against the Dodgers this season in three starts. Kershaw was 2-0 with a 0.59 ERA against the D-Backs this year. This will be Kershaw’s 18th playoff appearance; it will be Walker’s first.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1941 In Game 5 of the Fall Classic, Tiny Bonham goes the distance, limiting the Dodgers to just four hits to give the Yankees their 12th World Championship in franchise history. In one inning during the Bronx Bombers’ 3-1 victory at Ebbets Field, the New York fireballing right-hander will need just three pitches to retire the side.
  • 1949 In Game 2 of the World Series, only one run is scored again, but Preacher Roe and the Dodgers win this contest at Yankee Stadium, 1-0. Gil Hodges’ second inning single drives in Jackie Robinson to even up the Fall Classic at a game apiece.
  • 1959 The largest crowd ever to attend a major league game, 92,706 fans, watches a nail biter as White Sox hurler Bob Shaw beats Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 1-0, in Game 5 of the Fall Classic.
  • 1963 The Dodgers complete a four-game World Series sweep of the Yankees as Sandy Koufax wins his second game, 2-1. Frank Howard leads the offense with a home run and a single, the only two hits Whitey Ford gives up, and New York’s first baseman Joe Pepitone’s error (loses a thrown ball in the white-shirted crowd) leads to the decisive run in the seventh inning.
  • 1965“Hey, skip, bet you wish I was Jewish today, too.” – Don Drysdale, commenting after the game about his poor performance on the mound with manager Walt Alston. Sandy Koufax declines to pitch the first game of the World Series against the Twins because the game is scheduled on Yom Kippur, the most sacred of the Jewish holidays. As the Dodger southpaw attends shul and fasts on the Day of Atonement, Don Drysdale gives up seven runs in three innings in the team’s 8-2 loss at Minnesota’s Metropolitan Stadium.
  • 1966 Jim Palmer becomes the youngest player to pitch a shutout in the World Series when the 20 year-old Oriole right-hander blanks Sandy Koufax and the Dodgers, 6-0. The contest will become more memorable next month when Koufax surprises the baseball world by announcing his retirement, making this game his last major league appearance.
  • 1966 In the same Game Two loss to the Orioles at Dodger Stadium, Willie Davis establishes a World Series record by committing three errors in one game. The center fielder’s blunders come on two consecutive plays in the fifth inning, the first by losing a fly ball in the sun, then by dropping the next fly ball, followed by overthrowing third base.
  • 1980 In the 163rd game of the season, 35 year-old knuckleballer Joe Niekro earns his 20th victory, going the distance to defeat the Dodgers, 7-1, in the winner-take-all contest for the NL West. With the win, the Astros hold on to capture their first title in the 19-year history of the franchise after losing a season-ending three game series to LA, (3-2, 2-1, and 4-3) that forced the one-game playoff.

Lineup when available.

Sep 19

Game 151, 2017

Dodgers at Phillies, 4:05 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, CSN-P

RHP Yu Darvish (9-12, 4.08 ERA) goes for the Dodgers and Aaron Nola (11-10, 3.60 ERA) pitches for the Phillies. Darvish has been inconsistent with the Dodgers, but in his last start he threw seven shutout innings and beat the Giants. Nola had a good start his last time out too, giving up one run on four hits over seven innings and getting a win against the Marlins.

The NFL Lions’ QB Matt Stafford and the Dodgers’ Kershaw have been friends since high school. Last night during Monday Night Football Stafford used Kershaw’s name as a signal for a play from scrimmage.

Today in Dodgers’ history: The site I usually get this from is down this morning. Instead, here’s a piece of history from 1988: On this day Orel Hershiser shut out the Astros 1-0 on four hits (the Dodgers only got three, but one was a home run by John Shelby in the seventh inning). This was his fourth consecutive shutout, and his streak hit 40 consecutive scoreless innings.

Oh look: it’s back up now.

  • 1935 The Cubs win their 16th consecutive game as they beat Carl Hubbell, completing a four-game sweep of the Giants. The mark is the most since the 1924 Dodgers won 15 straight games.
  • 1964 With two outs in the bottom of the 16th inning, Willie Davis, after singling, swiping second, and advancing to third on a wild pitch, steals home, giving the Dodgers a 4-3 victory over Philadelphia. The fleet outfielder’s theft of the plate is in the latest frame in a National League game the feat has ever been accomplished and ties Hal Trosky’s major league record set in 1944.
  • 1973 Astros’ infielder Dave Campbell hits a first-inning two-run double against San Diego right-hander Clay Kirby to snap an 0-for-45 drought, tying a major league record set in 1909 by Bill Bergen, a catcher who played with Brooklyn. ‘Soup’, who will become a respected national baseball broadcaster, endured the futility while playing for three teams, combining a 17 at-bat hitless streak with the Padres and another 21 at-bat hitless streak for the Cardinals before hitting the two-bagger in his eighth at-bat with Houston.
  • 2000 A Dodger fan, in addition to other court-ordered restrictions, has been banned from attending home games in Los Angeles for 18 months. The irate patron threw coffee in the face of a Mets fan who was cheering a grand slam hit by New York’s catcher Todd Pratt.
  • 2014 LA’s Clayton Kershaw becomes the first 20-game winner of the season when the team routs Chicago at a windy Wrigley Field, 14-5. The 26 year-old southpaw, who has compiled a 20-3 (.870) record along with an ERA of 1.80. is the first Dodger hurler to reach the 20-win plateau twice since Claude Osteen accomplished the feat in 1969 and 1972.

Lineup:

Sep 04

Game 137, 2017

Diamondbacks at Dodgers, 5:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A, MLBN (out-of-market only)

The Dodgers’ LHP Rich Hill (9-6, 3.71 ERA) tries to hold serve against the D-Backs, who send LHP Robbie Ray (11-5, 2.97 ERA) out to extend their ten-game winning streak.

Ray has been better on the road than at home this season. He’s got a 6-1 record in 11 road starts with a 1.49 ERA. He’s 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA in four starts against the Dodgers this year. Hill pitched against the D-Backs last Tuesday and was beaten up. He went 3 2/3 innings and gave up six runs on eight hits and a walk. At home this year he’s 5-3 with a 3.17 ERA.

The Dodgers promoted Charlie Culberson from OKC, reinstated Josh Fields from the 10-day DL and made room on the 40-man roster by moving Brandon McCarthy to the 60-day DL retroactive to July 21. (Side note: I’d love to play poker with rules that let me retroactively change a card I’d previously played!)

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1924 The Brooklyn Robins (Dodgers) take a twin bill from the Braves, sweeping their fourth doubleheader in four consecutive days. Between September 1-3, the Brooks beat the Phillies six times.
  • 1966 The Dodgers become the first team to draw two million fans at home and two million on the road as 18,670 Crosley Field patrons watch Los Angeles beat their home town Reds, 8-6.
  • 1969 After thirty-one games, the third longest consecutive game hitting streak in National League history ends as Dodger Willie Davis is stopped by Dick Kelley and Gary Ross in a 3-0 loss to the Padres.

Lineup when available.

Sep 02

Game 134, 2017

Dodgers at Padres, 12:40 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSSD

Game One of a doubleheader (a makeup game for a May 7 rainout) features Dodgers’ RHP Brock Stewart (0-0, 3.38 ERA) pitching against the Padres’ lefty Clayton Richard (6-13, 4.96 ERA). Stewart has a 6.52 ERA as a starter and a 1.26 ERA as a reliever in seven appearances this season. This will be Richard’s fifth start against the Dodgers this season; he’s got a 5.79 ERA through the first four.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1969 Willie Davis, with his sixth-inning double in the team’s 5-4 loss to New York at Dodger Stadium, breaks a 53 year-old franchise record by hitting safely in thirty consecutive games. The LA outfielder surpasses the streak established by Zack Wheat in 1916 when the team played in Brooklyn.
  • 1971 Cesar Cedeno hits an inside-the-park grand slam when Dodger second baseman Jim Lefebvre and right fielder Bill Buckner collide trying to make the fifth inning catch. The 200-foot dropped bloop contributes to the Astros’ 9-3 victory over LA at the Astrodome.
  • strong>1972 In his major league debut, Doug Rau throws a three-hitter, beating St. Louis at Busch Stadium, 5-1. In his first big-league at-bat, the 23 year-old Dodger southpaw helps his cause with a RBI-triple in the second inning.
  • 1993 The Rockies, drawing a crowd 47,699 for their 62nd home game, surpass the 1982 Dodgers when the team attracts 3,617,863 fans to Denver’s Mile High Stadium, setting a new National League single-season attendance record. The expansion club will also break the 1992 Blue Jays’ major league mark of 4,028,318 before the season is over.

Lineup when available.

The reward for playing well at AAA is to play at the MLB level, and today O’Koyea Dickson has his first opportunity ever to do so. Good for him.

Sep 01

Game 133, 2017

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

The Dodgers’ lefty ace Clayton Kershaw (15-2, 2.04 ERA) returns from the disabled list tonight to face the Padres’ RHP Dinelson Lamet, (7-5, 4.60 ERA).

Kershaw may be on a five-inning, 75-pitch limit. He struck out eight in five innings earlier this week in a rehab assignment for OKC. Lamet has had a 2.68 ERA in his last seven starts and allowed no more than four hits in any of them. He has, however, walked 16 in his five August starts.

On the first day of roster expansion the Dodgers called up Rob Segedin, Alex Verdugo and O’Koyea Dickson and reinstated André Ethier and Clayton Kershaw. To make room they moved Grant Dayton to the 60-day DL and designated Brett Eibner and Luis Ysla for assignment.

In hurricane relief news, Yasiel Puig’s foundation donated 20K to the American Red Cross.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1890 On Labor Day at Brooklyn’s Washington Park, the Bridegrooms, later to be known as the Dodgers, win all three games against Pittsburgh in the first tripleheader ever played. The home team sweeps the visiting Alleghenys, who will be renamed the Pirates next season, 10-9, 3-2, and 8-4.
  • 1953 The Cardinals tie a major league mark, hitting five homers in a 12-5 loss to Brooklyn at Ebbets Field. The solo shots hit by Stan Musial, Harry Elliot, Rip Repulski, and Steve Bilko (2), all off starter Preacher Roe, aren’t enough to offset the Dodgers’ 17-hit attack, which includes six doubles but no round-trippers.
  • 1969 At Dodger Stadium, Willie Davis ties the franchise record by hitting in 29 consecutive games with his second-inning single in LA’s 10-6 victory over New York. The mark was established by Zack Wheat in 1916.

Today in questionable sportsmanship: In 1980 on the final day of the season, PawSox infielder Wade Boggs loses the International League batting title when he grounds out to first base in his final turn at-bat of the season. The plate appearance is necessitated when the Mud Hens, who are ahead 6-0, issue a two-out intentional walk in the ninth inning to light-hitting Ray Boyer, who makes every attempt to be put out to end the game, but is allowed to stroll around the bases and score on a deliberate error by the Toledo pitcher, forcing Boggs to make one last unnecessary plate appearance that will put him .007 of a percentage point behind Dave Engle, who plays in the outfield for the opponents.

Lineup when available.

Verdugo starts his first MLB game tonight. Seager still has a sore arm, I imagine.

Jun 19

Game 71, 2017

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

This will be the first time the Mets’ RHP Zach Wheeler (3-4, 4.48 ERA) pitches against the Dodgers. He’ll face LHP Clayton Kershaw (9-2, 2.23 ERA).

Wheeler had a pretty good May and June until his last outing, when he was shelled by the Cubs, giving up eight runs in only 1 2/3 innings. He’s coming off Tommy John surgery and has already thrown 64 1/3 innings, which the Mets say is about halfway to the point where they want to shut him down. Kershaw threw seven good innings in his last start against the Indians, and he’s working on an extra day of rest, too. He has been more susceptible to the gopher ball this year than in the past; he’s given up 13 already this season, three short of his career high.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1952 Carl Erskine throws a no-hitter against the Cubs in the Dodgers’ 5-0 victory at Ebbets Field. A third inning walk to the opposing pitcher, which accounts for the only runner to reach base, may have been a result of skipper Chuck Dressen telling the 25 year-old right-hander to speed up his pitches due to an impending storm.
  • 1972 At Three Rivers Stadium, Roberto Clemente hits a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning to become the Pirates’ all-time RBI leader. The Pittsburgh right fielder’s three ribbies in the 13-3 drubbing of the Dodgers give the future Hall of Famer a total of 1,274 runs batted in for the Bucs.
  • 1973 In different games, the Reds’ Pete Rose and Dodger Willie Davis both collect their 2,000th career hit. The Cincinnati infielder, known as ‘Charlie Hustle’, reaches the milestone with a single against San Francisco in the Reds’ 4-0 victory at Candlestick Park, and the L.A. outfielder, known as 3-Dog, reaches the plateau in front of the home crowd with a two-run home run in the team’s 3-0 victory over Atlanta.
  • 2003 During a College World Series contest against Stanford, a pitch strikes Cal State Fullerton shortstop Justin Turner on the left side of his face as he attempts to bunt. Adding insult to injury, the future Mets infielder also suffers a broken ankle on the play when he unsuccessfully tries to avoid getting hit by the 87-mph fastball thrown by Matt Manship.

Lineup when available.

Jun 11

Game 64, 2017

Reds at Dodgers, 1:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-O

The Reds send RHP Tim Adleman (4-2, 4.42 ERA) to the hill to face the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu (2-6, 4.08 ERA). Adleman has thrown three consecutive quality starts including a seven-inning three-hit performance last Tuesday against the Cardinals. Ryu has struggled to regain his form of 2013-2014 since shoulder surgery in 2015 and elbow surgery in 2016, but his last two starts have been his longest since 2014 and he’s only walked three batters in his last four starts and 22 1/3 innings.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1957 The Dodgers’ Roy Campanella surpasses former Cub and Giant backstop Gabby Hayes to establish a new National League mark when he hits his 237th career round-tripper as a catcher. Campy’s historic home run comes off Ray Crone in the seventh inning of Brooklyn’s 7-2 loss to the Braves at Ebbets Field.
  • 1972 LA outfielders Manny Mota and Willie Davis both hit inside-the-park homers down the foul lines at Dodger Stadium off Bucs’ starter Bruce Kison. Roberto Clemente’s seventh inning home run over the fence proves to be the difference in Pittsburgh’s 7-5 victory, their 21st win the last 26 games.

I didn’t realize this milestone was so close: “Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen is one save away from becoming the sixth active pitcher to reach 200 career saves.” Who are the other five? Find them here.

Lineup when available.

May 24

Game 47, 2017

Cardinals at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-M, MLBN (out-of-market only)

RHP Mike Leake (4-2, 2.03 ERA) tries to recapture his lead in the NL ERA race one night after he was overtaken by the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw (2.01 ERA after last night’s gem). He’ll face the Dodgers’ Rich Hill (1-1, 2.77 ERA), who’ll be pitching on seven days’ rest.

Leake has been impressive all season; in fact he’s the only NL pitcher to post a quality start every time he’s gone to the mound in 2017. This will be Hill’s second start since coming off the 10-DL; he hasn’t faced the Cardinals since 2008.

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1947 Carl Furillo hits a three-run homer as a pinch-hitter in the first frame of the Dodgers’ 4-3 ten-inning loss to Philadelphia at Ebbets Field. The unusual substitution occurs when Phillies manager Ben Chapman uses his right-handed starter Al Jurisch to pitch only to Brooklyn’s first two hitters, Pee Wee Reese and Jackie Robinson, and then brings in southpaw Oscar Judd, who had been warming up from the start of the game, to face the next three lefty hitters, Pete Reiser, Dixie Walker, and Gene Hermanski, the batter replaced by Furillo.
  • 1973 In a 19-inning marathon, LA outfielder Willie Davis collects six hits in a 7-3 loss to the Mets at Dodger Stadium. The two clubs establish a National League mark by hitting into a combined nine double plays.
  • 2000 Sixteen Dodger players and three coaches are suspended by the commissioner’s office for going into the stands during the Wrigley Field scuffle with fans on May 16. The suspensions totaling 60 games for players and 24 games for coaches is the harshest penalty ever handed down by major league baseball.

In non-Dodger history I thought this was interesting:

  • 1964 The major league mark for shutouts in one day is broken as seven of the twenty major league teams do not cross home plate. The Twins, White Sox, Yankees, Mets, Phillies, Cardinals, and Pirates are all blanked. The record is now eight, set on June 4, 1972. Yes, the Dodgers were participants. Claude Osteen lost to Bob Gibson 4-0.

Lineup when available.

Puig’s ribs can’t hurt him too much if he’s in the outfield again tonight.

May 07

Game 32, 2017 (PPd.)

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

It’s not clear (ha!) whether the weather will allow this game to be played, but if it is it will be RHP Brandon McCarthy (3-0, 3.10 ERA) for the Dodgers and Trevor Cahill (2-2, 3.60 ERA) for the Padres. This may portend well for the Dodgers:

McCarthy’s greatest success has come against the Padres. He is 8-1 with a 3.79 ERA in his career against San Diego, and he beat them, 10-2, on April 6 in Los Angeles.

Two years ago Cahill was in the Dodgers’ minor league system rehabilitating his career; now he’s pitching against them in the bigs. He lost in the opening series of the season to them. He’s been striking out a lot more hitters than usual this year: 30 percent of them instead of the 17 percent he’s averaged over his career. It may be his curveball: opponents are 2-34 against that pitch this season.

Regarding the weather, there’s this:

There have been only two rainouts in Petco Park history, the most recent coming on July 19, 2015, between the Padres and the Rockies. The other took place in 2006, two years after the park opened.

Today in Dodger 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 battery mates 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 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.
  • 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.

Lineup when available.