Aug 27

Game 129, 2017

Brewers at Dodgers, 1:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FSWI, MLBN (out-of-market only)

The Brewers send RHP Jimmy (Big Sweat) Nelson (9-6, 3.79 ERA) out to face the Dodgers’ RHP Yu (Yu-san) Darvish (8-9, 3.83 ERA) in the rubber match of the three-game series.

The Dodgers faced Nelson on June 2 at Miller Park, when he threw eight shutout innings and struck out 11 but got no decision in a game the Dodgers won, 2-1, in 12 innings. Darvish is 2-0 with a 2.50 ERA over 18 innings in the three starts he’s made as a Dodger. He’s never faced the Brewers.

The Dodgers reinstate Darvish and add Fields to the 10-day DL retroactively with lower back strain.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1937 Dodger right-hander Fred Frankhouse holds the Reds hitless for 7 2/3 innings before a heavy downpour ends the Ebbets Field contest permanently. The right-hander’s 5-0 victory will be one of the 31 “no-no’s” that is erased when MLB redefines a no-hitter in 1991 as a game in which a pitcher throws nine innings or more without giving up a hit. (Editor — I didn’t think that was fair then and I don’t now)
  • 1951 Dodger right fielder Carl Furillo throws out Mel Queen by two feet at first base, after the Pirates pitcher had apparently singled into right field in the top of the third inning in the team’s 5-0 victory over Pittsburgh at Ebbets Field. The “Reading Rifle” will lead the NL in assists for the second consecutive season, with opponents becoming increasingly more reluctant to challenge the strong arm of the Brooklyn outfielder.
  • 1952 The Dodgers set the National League mark for consecutive games with a double play when they complete a twin killing in their twenty-third straight contest, a 10-5 loss to Chicago at Wrigley Field. The fifth inning 1-4-3 DP, pitcher Clyde King to second baseman Jackie Robinson to first baseman Gil Hodges, leaves Brooklyn two shy of the major league record.
  • 1955 Sandy Koufax, in his second big league start, two-hits the Reds at Ebbets Field, 7-0. The 19 year-old bonus baby, displaying the dominance that he will feature during the 1960’s, goes the distance, striking out 14 Cincinnati batters.
  • 2005 Jeff Kent becomes the first player to hit 300 homers as a second baseman. The Dodger infielder, who surpassed Ryne Sandberg’s total of 277 last September, is the major league leader at this position, with Joe Gordon holding the American League record with 246 round-trippers.

John Henry of the Red Sox has recently advocated the renaming of Yawkey Way outside Fenway Park in Boston. Here’s one of the reasons why: in 1946 a committee formed to study integration, which includes Red Sox owner Tom Yawkey, delivers its secretive report during an Owners’ Meeting. It defends the covert color barrier which exists in professional baseball. The absurd reasons given to why blacks shouldn’t be allowed to play in the big leagues include an absence of skills due to inferior training and lack of fundamentals and the need to respect Negro League contracts, but another lesser known motivation may have been profit as revealed later in the report, “The Negro leagues rent their parks in many cities from clubs in Organized Baseball (and) Club owners in the major leagues are reluctant to give up revenues amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars every year” as well as the fear white fans would be driven away if black players attracted more minorities to the ballpark.

Lineup when available.

Aug 16

Game 119, 2017

White Sox at Dodgers, 7:10 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, CSN-C

The White Sox try to get a split of this series tonight, sending out YALHP Carlos Rodon (1-4, 4.24 ERA) to face the Dodgers’ big (6′ 5″, 220 lbs) trade deadline acquisition, RHP Yu Darvish (8-9, 3.81).

This will be Darvish’s home debut, and if he continues the way he did in his first two starts for the Dodgers he’ll please the crowd, his teammates and management. Since his acquisition he’s 2-0 with a 1.50 ERA and has 20 strikeouts to only three walks in 12 innings. He also has finished off a strikeout with 30.3 percent of his two-strike pitches. Rodon’s last start against the Astros was his best of the season. He went 8 innings and gave up just two runs but got no decision for all his work.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1950 At the Polo Grounds, Hank Thompson’s two inside-the-park home runs off Don Bankhead and Carl Erskine contribute to the Giants’ 16-7 drubbing of the Dodgers. The 24 year-old third baseman will hit 129 round-trippers in his 9-year career, three of which will be of the IPHR variety.
  • 1964 St. Louis outfielder Curt Flood collects eight consecutive hits during a doubleheader against Dodgers pitching. The Cardinals split the twin bill in Los Angeles, losing the opener to Sandy Koufax, 3-0, but take the nightcap when Curt Simmons tosses a six hitter to give the Redbirds a 4-0 victory.

Babe Ruth died in New York City on this day in 1948.

Lineup:

I suspect Kiké is in the lineup because he homered twice off Rodon in his only other start against the Dodgers back in July.

Aug 10

Game 114, 2017

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 6:40 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

The Dodgers send Yu Darvish (7-9, 3.81 ERA) to make his second start in the NL; his first was a rousing success. He’ll face YALHP Anthony Banda (1-1. 3.86 ERA), who got his first big league win in his most recent start.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1979 Dodger hurler Don Sutton sets a franchise record with his 50th shutout, blanking San Francisco at Candlestick Park, 9-0. The 34 year-old right-hander has previously shared the mark with Don Drysdale. (Ed. note: 50! In his tenth year Clayton Kershaw has a career total of 15!)
  • 1995 The first forfeit in the majors in sixteen years occurs when the fans for the third time during the night throw promotional souvenir baseballs onto the Dodger Stadium field. At the time of the decision to halt the game, Los Angeles is trailing the Cardinals, 2-1 with one out in the bottom of the ninth.

August 10 is a good day for pitchers: in 1971 at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park, Juan Marichal records his 50th career shutout as the Giants blank the Expos, 1-0. The Dominican hurler’s ninth inning double helps to build the winning run.

Lineup when available.

Aug 08

Game 112, 2017

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 6:40PM PT, TV: SPNLA, FS-A

The Dodgers’ Kenta Maeda (10-4, 3.79 ERA) has won his last four starts. He’ll face the D-Backs’ Zack Godley (5-4, 2.86 ERA), who hasn’t allowed a run in his last thirteen innings (two starts).

Sports Illustrated has an article about the Dodgers and the Darvish acquisition.

Brock Stewart has been recalled while Luis Avilan goes on the paternity list.

On this date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1903 In the third inning of the 4-3 nightcap loss to New York at the Polo Grounds, Dodger starter Henry Schmidt is thrown out of the game after he throws the baseball out of the park. The Brooklyn hurler became very angry when opposing pitcher Joe McGinnity dashed home from third base while his infielders were arguing the close call at the bag.
  • 1954 Gil Hodges comes to bat three times in the eighth inning when the Dodgers score 13 runs en route to a 20-7 rout of the Reds at Ebbets Field. The first baseman will go 1-for-3 in the frame with a leadoff triple, but will be responsible for all three outs when he hits into a double play and flies out to centerfield to end the Brooklyn barrage.
  • 1957 Club President Walter O’Malley makes it official, announcing the Dodgers will play in Los Angeles next season. The club’s departure from Brooklyn corresponds with the massive social shift taking place in the borough that finds many of its former residents leaving for the suburbs of Long Island.
  • 2000 Cubs hurler Phil Norton becomes the 18th pitcher in major league history to give up four homers in one inning in the Dodgers’ 7-5 victory at Chavez Ravine. Kevin Elster, Darren Dreifort, Gary Sheffield, and Shawn Green all take the 24 year-old southpaw deep in the bottom of the fourth inning.
  • 2000 Darren Dreifort hits two home runs and gets the win in the Dodgers’ 7-5 victory over the Cubs. The starting pitcher, who hurls 6.2 innings, goes deep in the bottom of the fourth and fifth frames.
  • 2000 After kissing one another in the seventh inning, a female couple is abruptly asked to leave Dodger Stadium immediately and are told never to “set foot back on the premises” for “lewd behavior”. The pair had planned to sue the organization, but ended up not doing so after the team apologized, promising to contribute 5,000 tickets to GLBT organizations and continue sensitivity training for all its employees.

Today in 1941 Les Brown and his Orchestra record “Joltin’ Joe” for Columbia Records. The song about Yankee outfielder Joe DiMaggio’s hitting streak will be played incessantly on radio stations across the country, eventually reaching number 12 on the charts.

Lineup when available.

Aug 04

Game 109, 2017

Dodgers at Mets, 1:00 PM PT, TV: SPNLA, SNY

Joe Posnanski writes for MLB.com:

Assuming everyone stays healthy, the Dodgers’ crazy lineup features eight players with double-digit home runs and includes NL MVP Award candidates Corey Seager and Justin Turner, along with a certain NL Rookie of the Year Award winner in Bellinger. Their bullpen is so good that the Dodgers have gone into the sixth inning with 61 leads … and they have won every single one of those games. And the rotation will feature Kershaw, Alex Wood (who is 13-1 with a 2.33 ERA) and now Darvish. It doesn’t quite seem fair.

Dylan Hernandez writes at the LA Times:

What immediately stands out about Yu Darvish is his size.

He’s huge. Like, really, really huge.

The measurements of 6 feet 5 and 220 pounds don’t adequately describe the physical stature of the Dodgers’ recently acquired flamethrower. His shoulders are massive. His chest is expansive.

Andy McCullough has team reactions as the deal was made and confirmed.

As noted, the Dodgers send out the newly-acquired RHP Yu Darvish, who was 6-9 with a 4.01 ERA for the Rangers this season. He’ll face RHP Jacob deGrom, who’s 12-4 with a 3.29 ERA and one of the few bright spots in the Mets’ otherwise-unhappy season in which they’re eight games under .500 and only Jacob deGrom has made all 21 scheduled starts. Steven Matz, who is 2-4 with a 5.50 ERA in 10 starts, is the only other pitcher on the active roster of the seven candidates for the rotation in spring training.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1908 In Brooklyn, the last-place Cardinals blank the Brooklyn Superbas (Dodgers), 3-0. The entire Washington Park contest is played with just one ball.
  • 1941 Mickey Owens [sic] becomes the first catcher to handle three foul pop ups in one frame. The Brooklyn backstop’s third inning defense contributes to the Dodgers’ 11-6 victory over New York at Ebbets Field.
  • 1942 In a military relief game at the Polo Grounds, which will be the last war-time twilight game played, Pee Wee Reese’s grand slam in the top of the ninth, which puts the Dodgers up 5-1, doesn’t count because of the 9:10 pm government curfew. The game ends up as a 1-1 tie with the Giants.
  • 1948 Ernie Harwell, filling in for Red Barber, who is recovering from a bleeding ulcer, calls his first major league game as the Dodgers beat the Cubs at Ebbets Field, 5-4. To obtain the future Hall of Fame broadcaster, Brooklyn general manager Branch Rickey trades minor league catcher Cliff Dapper to the Atlanta Crackers.

In non-Dodgers history, on this date in 1985 Tom Seaver won his 300th game and Rod Carew got his 3,000th hit.

Lineup when available.

Aug 02

Game 107, 2017

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

The Dodgers have won nine in a row. They have already had two 10-game winning streaks this year; only two teams have had three since 1913.

The visiting Dodgers give RHP Brock Stewart (0-0, 0.00 ERA) the ball and ask him to hold off the hometown Braves, who counter with RHP Julio Teheran (7-9, 5.09 ERA).

Stewart went only 3 2/3 innings against the Twins last Wednesday, but all five of the runs scored on him were unearned and he got off the hook when the Dodgers rallied to win 6-5. Teheran has lost three straight games and posted a 6.88 ERA since the All Star break. It doesn’t get any easier: Corey Seager is 3-for-9 against Teheran, all of them home runs. Yasiel Puig (5-for-10, HR), Chase Utley (7-for-28, HR), Logan Forsythe (3-for-5, HR), Yasmani Grandal (6-for-13, three doubles) and Joc Pederson (4-for-13) have been successful against him as well.

Yu Darvish has been activated. To make room, Josh Ravin was optioned to OKC.

This date in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1938 As an experiment, bright yellow baseballs are used in the first game of a doubleheader. The teams go back to the traditional white ball in the nightcap as the Dodgers swept the twin bill from the Cardinals, 6-2 and 9-3.
  • 1982 During a ceremony held in Cooperstown, NY, the United States Postal Service unveils a 20-cent stamp commemorating baseball great Jackie Robinson as part of its annual Black Heritage series. The Dodger infielder becomes the first individual baseball player to be depicted on a U.S postage stamp.

  • 2002 Reds general manager Jim Bowden is fined by commissioner Bud Selig for the comments he made to reporters prior to yesterday’s game against the Dodgers comparing a baseball strike with the terrorist attacks of September 11th. Quickly realizing the use of such analogy was inappropriate and insensitive, the Cincinnati GM issues an immediate apology after the game.
  • 2008 In the first game after the Manny Ramirez trade to the Dodgers, the Fenway Faithful enthusiastically welcome Jason Bay, the player replacing the Boston icon. The former Pirates outfielder doesn’t disappoint, tripling and scoring the winning run in the 12th inning of the Red Sox’s 2-1 victory over the A’s.

In non-Dodgers history of note, in 1921 with the jurors lifting the men onto their shoulders, the eight White Sox players accused of throwing the 1919 World Series are acquitted by the jury. The next day, Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis will say the overwhelming evidence clearly shows the Black Sox fixed the games with gamblers, and all involved will be banned from playing professional baseball again.

Lineup:

Jul 31

Trade deadline, 2017

Dodgers acquire Darvish. Trade does not include Verdugo. The Rangers get Willie Calhoun, A.J. Alexy and Brendon Davis. 2B Calhoun is the big name there. He’s got a slash line of .298/.357/.574 at OKC. RHP Alexy is with the Class A Great Lakes Loons, and SS Davis has been with both the Loons and the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes this season.

Scott Van Slyke for Cingrani. Deal also includes Hendrik Clementina, a 20-year-old catcher who’s currently at Ogden in the Pioneer League (Rookie).

The Dodgers also acquired LHP reliever Tony Watson from Pittsburgh. They reportedly send IF Oneil Cruz and RHP Angel German to the Pirates. German’s been with the Class A Loons, as has Cruz.

Discuss in comments.

Oct 07

Divisional Series AL Games Two, NL Games One, 2016

Beginning at 10:00AM PT, there are four Division Series games on tap this Friday. First is Game Two of the Blue Jays-Rangers series, then at 1:30PM PT it’s Game Two of the Red Sox-Indians series. Next at 2:30PM PT is Game One of the Dodgers-Nationals NLDS, and then to close the day out Game One of the Giants-Cubs NLDS begins at 6:00PM PT.

Toronto at Texas, TV: TBS, SportsNet

The Jays start LHP J.A. Happ (20-4, 3.18 ERA), who ended the season with a rush, putting up a 2.35 ERA over his last five starts. He’ll face RHP Yu Darvish (7-5, 3.41 ERA), who’s 3-2 with a 2.45 ERA in seven starts against Toronto. Darvish finished strongly too, allowing one run and five hits with 21 strikeouts in 13 innings in wins over the A’s and Rays to end his regular season.

Boston at Cleveland, TV: TBS

The Red Sox send LHP David Price (17-9, 3.99 ERA) to the hill to face RHP Corey Kluber (18-9, 3.14 ERA). Price has been an ace everywhere he’s pitched, but in the postseason he’s been unable to replicate his regular season performances. He’s 2-7 with a 5.12 ERA in 14 career postseason appearances, with both of those wins coming in relief. Kluber skipped his last scheduled start with a tight quadriceps and has had ten days of rest.

San Francisco at Chicago, TV: FS1

The Giants ask RHP Johnny Cueto (18-5, 2.79 ERA) to pick up where Bumgarner left off in the Wild Card game, which might not be unthinkable: Cueto’s last start in the postseason was a complete game 1-0 shutout of the Mets in the 2015 World Series. He closed the season with a 4-0 record and 1.78 ERA in five starts in September. His opponent will be LHP Jon Lester (19-5, 2.44 ERA), who’s had plenty of postseason experience himself, going 6-6 with a 2.85 ERA in 16 games, 14 of which were starts. He finished the season with a flourish, going 9-1 with a 1.46 ERA in his last 12 starts.

Los Angeles at Washington, TV: FS1. Announcer Kenny Albert with Harold Reynolds and Tom Verducci serving as analysts and Jon Paul Morosi contributing reports. Radio: ESPN. Dave O’Brien does play-by-play and Jim Bowden is the analyst.

The Dodgers send LHP Clayton Kershaw (12-4, 1.69 ERA) to the mound to make his tenth postseason start. He’s had bad luck in previous playoff appearances, going just 2-6 with an ERA of 4.59 in his career. He spent two months on the disabled list this year but came back to go 1-2 with a 1.29 ERA in the five starts he made in September and October. He’ll face RHP Max Scherzer (20-7, 2.96 ERA), who’s gone 4-3 with a 3.73 ERA in twelve postseason appearances, all with Detroit. The Nationals have some serious injury worries which may have an impact on this series: C Wilson Ramos is out for the year, P Stephen Strasbourg won’t pitch until the next round if Washington gets that far, 2B Daniel Murphy has made one game appearance since September 20 and RF Bryce Harper has both a jammed left thumb and a sore neck.

Lineup: