Sep 25

Game 58, 2020

Angels at Dodgers, 6:40 PM PDT, TV: FS-W, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA

The visiting Angels send out old acquaintance (he was a Dodger for about three hours before they traded him to the Angels for Howie Kendrick on December 11, 2014)) Andrew Heaney (4-3, 4.02 ERA) to face the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (6-2, 2.15 ERA). In Heaney’s last start he gave up three runs over 6 2/3 innings in a no-decision against the Rangers. Kershaw’s probably not going to win a Cy Young Award this year (he’s got the fewest starts and innings of the top ten contenders) but his credentials are pretty darned good nonetheless.

Here’s Seager’s oh-so-close-to-a-grand slam sacrifice fly from yesterday’s game:

This day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1941 Combined with a Cardinal defeat, the Dodgers win their first pennant in 21 years when they beat Boston at Braves Field, 6-0. Whitlow Wyatt throws a five-hitter and Pete Reiser hits a homer in the winning cause.
  • 1956 Dodger right-hander Sal Maglie no-hits the Phillies at Ebbets Field, 5-0. The ‘Barber’s’ gem helps second-place Brooklyn to keep pace in the pennant race with Milwaukee and Cincinnati.

  • 1962 After appearing in 60 games over a two-year span, Dodger reliever Ed Roebuck suffers his first loss. The LA right-hander gives up a 10th inning home run to Houston’s Al Spangler, breaking the 2-2 deadlock at Chavez Ravine.
  • 1974 In the first-of-its-kind operation, Dr. Frank Jobe transplants a tendon from Tommy John’s right wrist to the Dodger pitcher’s left elbow. The revolutionary ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction, which will become a standard surgical procedure better known as Tommy John surgery, enables the southpaw to win an additional 164 games, more than half of his career total of 288 victories.
  • 1996 Giants slugger Barry Bonds draws an intentional walk which gives him the National League record with 149 bases-on-balls in a season. The free pass is issued in the seventh inning by LA’s Mark Guthrie with two outs and a runner on third base in the team’s 7-5 loss at Dodger Stadium. (Note: Bonds wasn’t done. He now holds down the top three spots in Most Walks, Hitter, Season).
  • 2008 The Diamondbacks, defending division champions, lose to St. Louis, 12-3, allowing the Dodgers to clinch the NL West. Los Angeles first-year skipper Joe Torre’s 13-year postseason streak continues, unlike the Yankees, his former team.

Lineup when available.

Sep 20

Game 54, 2020

Dodgers at Rockies, 12:10 PM PDT, TV: ATTSportsNet-RM, SPNLA

RHP Tony Gonsolin (1-1, 1.51 ERA) pitches for the Dodgers and RHP Antonio Senzatela (4-2, 3.30 ERA) goes for the Rockies. Gonsolin is coming off his best performance of the year; he went seven innings against the Padres on Wednesday and gave up just one run. Senzatela threw a nine-inning complete game last Tuesday, beating the As 3-1.

Here’s Mookie’s mad dash:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1907 At Exposition Park in Pittsburgh, Nick Maddox no-hits the Dodgers, 2-1. At the age of 20 years and ten months, the Pirates hurler becomes the youngest pitcher and the second rookie to throw a no-hitter.
  • 1911 Bill Bergen ends his major league career with the lowest lifetime batting average for a position player in major league history by hitting an anemic .170 during his 11-year tenure with the Reds and Superbas. The 33 year-old backstop, who had only one year of batting above .200, also holds the records for lowest season batting average for a regular season (.139 in 1909) and the longest streak of at-bats without a hit (46 in 1909).
  • 1954 The Giants clinch the pennant when they beat the Dodgers at Ebbets Field, 7-1. The National League champs, finishing the season five games ahead of second-place Brooklyn, will go on to sweep Cleveland in the Fall Classic.
  • 1959 The San Francisco Giants, bowing to the Dodgers, 8-2, play their last game at Seals Stadium. The transplanted New York team, who compiled a 163-145 record in their two-year stay in the former PCL park, will move to the newly constructed Candlestick Park next season.
  • 1961 In a 13-inning contest, Sandy Koufax goes the distance, beating the Cubs, 3-2, in the last regular season game to be played at the LA Memorial Coliseum, which was originally built for the 1932 Olympics. The Dodgers are leaving the only home they have known since moving from Brooklyn four seasons ago to play in a brand new stadium in Chavez Ravine, located a few miles from downtown Los Angeles.
  • 2011 Clayton Kershaw becomes the Dodgers’ first 20-game winner since Ramon Martinez accomplished the feat in 1990. Allowing just one run in 7 1/3 innings, the southpaw gets the victory when LA beats the visiting Giants, 2-1.
  • 2012 Washington secures a playoff spot when they beat the Dodgers at Nationals Park, 4-1. The last time there was postseason baseball in the nation’s capital occurred 79 years ago, when player-skipper Joe Cronin and the Senators lost to the Giants in five games in the 1933 World Series.

Lineup when available.

Sep 19

Game 53, 2020

Dodgers at Rockies, 5:10 PM PDT, TV: ATTSportsNet-RM, SPNLA

LHP Clayton Kershaw (5-2, 2.28 ERA) goes for the Dodgers while RHP Chi Chi González (0-1, 8.68 ERA) pitches for the home Rockies. Kershaw was the victim of shoddy defense his last time out; he’d struck out nine and walked none when he left the game in the 7th. González was awful in his last outing (walked three, hit one, pulled after 1/3 of an inning) but he’d had two strong relief appearances before that.

Will Smith gets voluminous praise from one of MLB’s editors: “Smith has a triple-slash line of .303/.417/.596, which is good for an OPS+ of 171. That’s the highest mark on Los Angeles, ahead of even Betts (163) and Seager (155) and puts Smith among some extremely impressive company.” He’s in the top ten in OPS, ahead of Jose Abreu and right behind Manny Machado.

Here’s the Dodgers’ five-run fifth inning yesterday:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 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 when available.

Sep 14

Game 48, 2020

Dodgers at Padres, 6:10 PM PDT, TV: FSSD, SPNLA

The visiting Dodgers send LHP Clayton Kershaw (5-1, 1.98 ERA) out to the mound at The Murph Petco Park to face RHP Dinelson Lamet (2–1, 2.24 ERA). Kershaw wasn’t at his best in his last start; he surrendered four runs on four hits in five innings against the D-Backs. Lamet is seemingly heavily reliant on his slider; in his last start he threw 66 of them. The opponents’ batting average on those pitches? .099.

MLB features this series, leading with this sentence: “The best team in baseball meets the hottest team in baseball this week.”

Here’s Graterol’s 3K first inning yesterday:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1951 Preacher Roe wins his 20th game of the season when the Dodgers beat the Pirates at Forbes Field, 3-1. The 36 year-old southpaw will finish the season with a 22-3 record.
  • 2002 Chin-Feng Chen becomes the first Taiwan-born player to appear in the major leagues as he walks and scores as a pinch-hitter for the Dodgers against the Rockies. The 24 year-old first baseman-outfielder played for the 1990 Taiwan team which won the Little League World Series.
  • 2008 Mets shortstop Jose Reyes, with his eighth-inning thievery in a 7-4 loss to the Braves at Shea Stadium, becomes the first player to have four straight seasons of 50 or more stolen bases playing for a New York area team, which also includes Yankees, Dodgers, and Giants. The accomplishment extends the infielder’s own record, as he is also the only Gotham major leaguer to achieve the feat for three consecutive years.

Also, in 1990 Mariner Ken Griffey and his son, Junior, become the first father and son to hit homers in the same major league game. The back-to-back blasts are given up by Angel hurler Kirk McCaskill.

Lineup:

Sep 09

Game 44, 2020

Dodgers at Diamondbacks, 6:30 PM PDT, TV: FS-A, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA

The Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (5-1, 1.50 ERA) takes the mound to face the D-Backs’ RHP Taylor Clarke (1-0, 2.96 ERA). Kershaw’s third strikeout today will move him ahead of Christy Mathewson on the all-time strikeout leader list. If he strikes out nine he’ll surpass A. J. Burnett. This will be Clarke’s fourth start but tenth appearance of the year; he took Merrill Kelly’s spot in the rotation after Kelly was injured (first a blood clot in his shoulder, then thoracic outlet syndrome surgery). In Clarke’s last start he went three innings, allowing three runs on six hits to the Giants.

Here’s the Dodgers’ late-inning comeback last night:

On this day in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1948 At the Polo Grounds, Dodger Rex Barney no-hits the Giants, 2-0. The Brooklyn 23 year-old right-hander had to endure a one-hour rain delay, as well as showers in the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings to finish his gem.
  • 1965 Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Cubs bests Bob Hendley’s one hit effort, 1-0. The Dodger Stadium gem is the southpaw’s record fourth no-hitter.“And there’s 29,000 people in the ballpark and a million butterflies.” – Vin Scully’s description of Koufax’s masterpiece.

  • 2013 Juan Uribe homers in each of his first three trips to the plate in the Dodgers’ 8-1 victory over Arizona. Los Angeles goes yard six times in the Chavez Ravine contest, falling two shy of the franchise record established in 2002.

Lineup:

Sep 03

Game 39, 2020

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

RHP Luke Weaver (1-5, 8.23 ERA) pitches for the visitors. He had a couple of good starts but his last one was horrible: he gave up four runs on eight hits to the Giants in just three innings. He has the unenviable task of facing the Dodgers’ LHP Clayton Kershaw (4-1, 1.80 ERA), who is, by some accounts, no longer an elite pitcher, just a very good one. Those doubters have so far been proven wrong.

How have the Dodgers built their team? Despite their obvious wealth, they’ve drafted most of their current stars.

Justin Turner is the Dodgers’ nominee for the 2020 Roberto Clemente Award, given to the player who best emulates the Pirate superstar’s philanthropy and community service. Clemente died delivering supplies to earthquake victims in Nicaragua in 1972. Here are all the nominees.

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1917 Grover Cleveland Alexander goes the distance in both games of the Phillies’ doubleheader sweep of Brooklyn at Ebbets Field. In his 18 innings of work, the Philadelphia right-hander limits the Dodgers to seven hits en route to posting 5-0 and 9-3 victories in the twin bill.
  • 1978 At Dodger Stadium, Lee Mazzilli becomes the first Mets player to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in a game. The center fielder’s first and seventh inning blasts, respectively hit off southpaw Tommy John and right-hander Charlie Hough, pace the last-place club to an 8-5 victory.

Lineup when available.

Sep 01

Game 37, 2020

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

With six days rest LHP Julio Urias (2-0, 3.67 ERA) goes for the home team. He’ll face the D-Backs’ LHP Alex Young (1-1, 4.70 ERA), who will be making his fourth start as the replacement for an injured Madison Bumgarner. Urias has been “throwing his fastballs slower and his offspeed pitches faster than last year,” says MLB. In Young’s last start he gave up three runs on five hits over five innings.

The D-Backs traded their crusty relief pitcher Archie Bradley to the Reds over the weekend, so the Dodgers won’t have to face him anytime soon.

Here are the three home runs which the Dodgers hit on Sunday to set the NL record for most dingers in a month:

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.

Lineup when available.

Aug 26

Game 32, 2020

Dodgers at Giants, 6:45 PM PDT, TV: ESPN (out-of-market only), NBCS BA, SPNLA

LHP Clayton Kershaw (3-1, 2.25 ERA) goes for the Dodgers. He’s 13-5 at the Giants’ park (no matter what it’s named) with a 1.57 ERA in 25 games, including 23 starts. He’s 23-13 overall in his career against them. He’ll face the Giants’ RHP Kevin Gausman (1-1, 4.65 ERA), who went 6 1/3 innings and gave up just one run in his most recent start against the Dodgers on August 9.

Here’s Seager’s monstrous HR in last night’s game:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1939 At Brooklyn’s Ebbets Field, NBC televises the first major league game in history on experimental station W2XBS, covering a doubleheader split in which the Reds win the first game, 5-2, and the Dodgers take the nightcap, 6-1. The network employs two cameras, one behind home plate, showing a wide view of the field, and the other on the third base line to capture the plays at first base.
  • 1947 Dan Bankhead becomes the major league’s first black pitcher. The 27 year-old right-hander doesn’t do well in a relief stint, giving up ten hits and six runs in 3.1 innings in a 16-3 loss to the Pirates, but the Dodger rookie hits his only big league home run in his first major league at-bat.
  • 1965 At Shea Stadium, the Mets beat the Dodgers, 5-2, making Tug McGraw (2-2) the first Mets pitcher to defeat Sandy Koufax (21-7). Previously, New York had lost 13 consecutive times to the future Hall of Fame southpaw.
  • 1993 The Mets announce that Vince Coleman will remain on paid administrative leave until the end of the season, effectively ending his playing career with the team. Co-owner Fred Wilpon’s unequivocal decision that the controversial outfielder, who signed a four-year $11.95 million contract before the 1991 season, will not ever put on a Mets uniform again is the result of Coleman admitting to tossing a M-100 firecracker from a Jeep departing from a Dodger Stadium parking lot last month, injuring three people.

Lineup when available.

Aug 21

Game 28, 2020

Rockies at Dodgers, 6:40 PM PDT, TV: ATT Sportsnet RM, MLBN (out-of-market only), SPNLA

The visiting Rockies send RHP Jon Gray (1-2, 5.74 ERA) to the mound to face the Dodgers’ RHP Walker Buehler (0-0, 5.21 ERA). Gray won his last start, giving up three runs on three hits while striking out seven in seven innings. Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts says Buehler is close to his normal self, but his ERA surely doesn’t reflect it yet.

Kershaw passed Don Drysdale in career strikeouts as a Dodger yesterday:

Today in Dodgers’ history, two very different events, one a calamitous bullpen meltdown I witnessed on Friday Night baseball and one hilarious overreaction on the part of a baseball team’s supposedly-professional management:

  • 1975 The Reuschel brothers of the Cubs join forces to blank the Dodgers, 6-0. Rick goes 6.1 innings, and Paul finishes the game for the first shutout thrown by siblings.
  • 1990 The Phillies overcome an eight-run deficit, scoring nine runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat the Dodgers, 12-11. John Kruk’s pinch-hit three-run homer ties the game, and two batters later, Carmelo Martinez’s double plates Rod Booker with the eventual winning run in the Chavez Ravine contest.

  • 2005 Florida suspends their bat boy for six games after the 11 year-old accepts former Marlin and current Dodger hurler Brad Penny’s $500 dare to drink a gallon of milk in less than an hour without throwing up. The Milk Processor Education Program will promise to pay off the dare and to cover the lost wages resulting from the suspension if the sixth grader, who is able to drink the quantity in the allotted time but cannot keep it down, agrees to drink three glasses every 24 hours.

Lineup:

Aug 20

Game 27, 2020

Dodgers at Mariners, 4:10 PM PDT, TV: MLBN (out-of-market only), ROOTNW, SPNLA

LHP Clayton Kershaw (2-1, 2.65 ERA) pitches for the Dodgers, while LHP Yusei Kikuchi (0-1, 5.28 ERA) does the same for the Mariners. Kershaw’s last start was vintage: one hit and one run allowed over seven innings with no walks and 6 Ks. Kikuchi missed his last start with neck spasms, but he’s apparently recovered. The 29-year-old is in just his second year in MLB after 9 years in the Japanese and Australian leagues, where he compiled a 79-59 W-L record with a very good 2.85 ERA.

Yesterday’s high (and low) lights:

Today in Dodgers’ history:

  • 1945 Dodger shortstop Tommy Brown becomes the youngest player (17 years, eight months, and 14 days) in major league history to hit a home run. The round-tripper by ‘Buckshot,’ who started his career as a 16 year-old high school student, will be the only run Brooklyn scores off 30 year-old Pirates southpaw Preacher Roe, who goes the distance in the 11-1 rout of the home team at Ebbets Field.
  • 1974 In an 18-8 rout of the Cubs, the Dodgers collect 24 hits and set a club record with 48 total bases, including Davey Lopes’ three home runs, double, and single. The Dodger second baseman’s 15 total bases are the most ever for a leadoff hitter.
  • 1978 In the visitors’ clubhouse at Shea Stadium, Dodger Blue becomes black and blue when Steve Garvey confronts teammate Don Sutton about a Washington Post story in which the pitcher is critical of him. After the right-hander confirms he had made the comments, the argument becomes physical when he makes an inappropriate remark about the first baseman’s wife.

Lineup: