Today's game

Yes, it’s that time of year again. All-Star balloting started online today and obviously we’ve found over the years that this is won by the Internet voters. While it’s too early for my usual "Get out the Vote" speeches, I do think that we’ve got several players who are among the top players in the league at their respective positions and hope that you’ll take the time to vote up to 25 times between now and the end of voting. It means quite a bit to the players who are selected and it shows the rest of the baseball world that Dodger fans aren’t as passive as they think we are.

Also, for those who didn’t see this morning’s post, there are a limited number of spots left for Monday night’s event. See below for details, but if you’re interested, you’ve got to let us know ASAP as most of the spots are gone.

Former Rocky Chin-hui Tsao was recalled and it’d be interesting if he made his first big league appearance in almost two years against his former team.

Here’s tonight’s lineup:

Furcal, SS

Pierre, CF

Nomar, 1B

Lieberthal, C

Ethier, RF

Clark, LF

Betemit, 3B

Martinez, 2B

Lowe, P

43 Comments

Nice. Now, the Dodgers just need to beat Rodrigo Lopez. Come on guys, make the Orioles look a little smarter!

Are you serious? The only players with a legitimate chance from the Dodgers, to get a voted selection to the all star game are Rafael Martin Garciapara.

Wow, its the first give-away game since the princess left. And we might even take it.

I don’t get it? I know guys need rest, but to rest Martin , Kent and Gonzo on the same day? How about different games for these 3 guys? Doesn’t that make more sense ?

I agree, its a weak lineup… But behind Lowe in Coors, we need the best defense (thus Martinez).

The ball carries much better in the daytime so if having a choice between Kent, Gonzo and Martin in tonight’s game or tomorrow’s, I’d go with tomorrow afternoon’s game as well. The obvious critique of the lineup is Lieberthal at cleanup, but let them play and then we can talk about that one. Go Dodgers!

Alex,

I agree. Let them play this game and then we can talk about it. I have high hopes

Were on a roll- and some of the guys that need to rest are resting….

Its aaaaallllll good.

Some of the perma-gripers will gripe about the line up…. yea yea yea… well be just fine.

Personally, I vote all the complainers and ultra negative folks to the Dodger Thoughts Island for a while. (Its great not having to read all the Pierre stuff for a few days).

Go Dodgers.

Well i have to say this lineup isnt the one id put up every night but for one night at Coors with Lowe pitching i can stand this one. The only thing i would change is maybe put Ethier at clean-up hes been stroking the ball the last couple nights and last night he hit two balls that would have went out in any other ball park so that and also id start Valdez instead of Betemit but i can see that they want Wilson to get some confidence back in his game.

Ohhh i almost forgot . . .
VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!!!!!! I love that kid!

Betermit just struck out. This means that he has struck out 4 times as often (8 times) as he has gotten a hit (2 hits)…

geez… Lowe looks bad tonight. I think we can officially say that Andre Ethier is back.

I know that Andy LaRoche numbers are not that great, but he is really turning it around. Betemit is horrible. Lets bring up Andy!

BELIEVE IN LaRoche!

I agree. We need to get rid of Betemit, and bring up Laroche. The future is with Rays kids, not with guys like Betemit.

Like others, I thought it was a little odd to see Martin, Kent, and Gonzo sitting on the same day. That’s a lot of good bats on the bench. I understand that if you’re going to rest some of the older guys, best to do it with Lowe going for defensive purposes, and Martin has to rest today or tomorrow. But all three on the same day is strange. Hopefully Coors Field will help get some bats that have been slow (Betemit, Martinez, Lieberthal, who mostly just has not had a chance).

I know it’s off-topic, but I wanted to comment on the Parking. I’ve been the three games–The Friday Freeway Series, and then Friday and Saturday vs. the Padres. A friend asked me about it, and I passed on these observations/suggestions. Not everyone will read this, but I hope that Josh can at least copy this and send it on. It’s long, but the team says that they will consider what we say, and I think we have an obligation to keep our insights coming.

First, I consider myself a “general parking” type of person—unless it’s a playoff game, I usually buy Top Deck tickets. But the firm I work for has season tickets with preferred parking, and I have used those tickets all three times so far, so I have had a little freedom.

Generally, my thoughts are this:

1) Getting in quickly is the most important thing. I know people want to leave quickly (I don’t usually even bother trying, as I will wander around the gift shop or something), but if you can’t get in quickly, you miss parts of the game. On most days, if you don’t get out quickly, it’s just a little later getting home. That being said, it looked like getting out on the Golden State Gate was problematic, but the Academy Gate was smooth-sailing.

2) As people learn the new system, they will figure it out, and there will be some more even distribution among the Gates. Overall, I think it’s going to improve, and I think that, overall, it will be better than the old system. I’m in my 26th season, and like some long-timers, I will have to adjust to changes. But, going to enough games before means that I learned the old tricks, and I will learn the new ones.

3) The new system will be a better system for the preferred parking holders. None of us riff-raff (which is usually me) to clutter up their lots. I know that the team tries to take care of Season Ticket-holders, but typically, the real fans are people who buy tickets to 10 games a year, not corporations who buy 81 games a year, write it off, and have the seats sit empty sometimes or have people who are indifferent. And I say this despite getting access to free tickets from one of those corporations, but it’s true. So, as adjustments are made, please account for the general parkers.

4) So far this year, I have arrived about 30 minutes prior to game time on the two Friday night games, and about an hour before the Saturday game. No problem any time getting in, and those were heavily attended (though not sold out) games. So, credit to the system. However, part of that is that I came in the Academy Gate, which is the least used gate. I drove by the Downtown Gate and it looked clogged. But then I braved the Downtown Gate, and remember that it expands at the top of the hill, so some of this is an illusory bottleneck. So, two gates look to be doing pretty well (although, that’s still 30 minutes before the game, and traffic is heavier closer to game time).

5) There are downsides for us general parkers (some justified, some not):

a) Some gates are better for walk-up ticket buyers. Most seats are on the Reserved Level, and I think that most walk-up tickets are for the Reserved and Top Deck. Those entrances are pretty much behind Home Plate. All the General Parking Lots are serviced by the Downtown Gate. That is also a prime gate for Corporate Ticket-holders (from corporations downtown and on the West side via the 110 and 10). So the logjam at the gate is imposing. This suggests looking into rejiggering this gate slightly.

b) Not all gates are equal. The Golden State Gate is the primary entrance off of I-5, and seems the busiest gate. But all the parking for that Gate feeds into the furthest away parking lots. If it’s a Wednesday night against the Pirates, you know attendance will be low, but you still get stuck parking far away. If there is a way to re-jigger this so you can park closer in, that’s great.

c) The new system looses out on the “on street” parking in the inner-loop. In the past, you could park on the side of the lanes behind homeplate on the inner loop. That probably accounted for 100 spots or so. That is especially bad on sold out games, because you lose parking. Is it possible to direct some early-comers to those spots? I know that one is tough.

d) The new system prevents “sneaking” into the preferred lots. I was often able to get into the old Lot 2, which was good for sitting on the Top Deck. I suppose I was not “supposed” to park there, but no one was there to prevent it much of the time. Also, in games that are not sold out, you could sometimes sneak into the preferred lots. I cannot really complain about not being able to do what I was not supposed to do in the past, but this does need to be considered. A lot of those preferred lots close to the stadium go unfilled during some games because corporate ticket-holders may not show up at weeknight games, and the fans who do will have to schlep past empty parking spots. I don’t know if there is a real solution here, but it should be considered.

6) Suggestions For Improvement

a) Add more attendants at each gate. The justification for the $5 increase is to hire more staff. But the biggest bottleneck in getting in is getting people through the gates. But you don’t have to be in the booth to collect $15 from a car and give them the license. If you put one person in each booth, and one person in front of each booth, you could do two cars at the same time, nearly doubling the speed that people came into the parking lot. That would do a whole lot to improve the situation of people getting into the parking lot. There were a number of green vested attendants that did not seem to be really useful in some places. By adding more people to take the money and let cars into the stadium is probably the best thing they could do to improve the traffic flow. Once you are in the stadium, it becomes a lot easier to move around, especially since the controlled zone parking is designed to reduce merging, lane-changing, etc.

b) Address the lots that feed from the Downtown Gate.

c) Improve the signage inside and outside the Stadium. There are a lot of baseball signs directing fans to the Stadium. Some of them are falling apart, and since they are old, they don’t indicate which gate you are being directed to, or which lot you are being directed to. If that information could be put up on those signs, it would help out. Signs inside the stadium need improvement too. There are old signs in the stadium indicated “Exit A” etc., but that’s not a gate name anymore.

d) Work with the City to improve roads outside the Stadium. If I want to come from the I-5 North, but park behind homeplate, I have to work around to the Downtown Gate from the Stadium Way exit, or get off at Broadway and pass the Academy Gate, and work around to the Downtown Gate. Since you have to now maneuver outside of the stadium now, it would help to make that easier.

7) Some really out-of-the-box suggestions:

a) Consider building a parking structure in Lot 10 (the former Lot 7), which is the biggest behind home plate lot. It’s also mostly set well below the grade of the stadium there, and people have to walk up the ramps. If you put two or three levels there, people could park much closer to the Stadium entrances.

b) Open up a new gate somewhere. I don’t really know where, but it seems like there may be some more places.

c) Arrange a tram from the outer parking lots–like they do at Disneyland.

as I read about Willy Aybar’s indefinite suspension from the Braves, I am reminded that Betemit is referred to as a utility infielder that was acquired in the trade, and so far tonight he is looking every bit the part. So, we have three utility infielders, no third basemen.

I feel really badly for Betemit. He could be one **** of an offensive threat if he ever gets his head on straight… but I’m afraid he’s going to play his way onto the bench if his batting keeps up. Obviously from last year he had a tough time batting right handed… which brings up a question: I’m wondering if anyone can bring up an example of a young switch-hitter who eventually gave it up in favor of his stronger batting side? Does anyone know if this has ever happened before, because I’m thinking maybe Wilson had better just hit from one side until he learns to hit again. His power is incredible… and we could certainly use it… but he needs to start producing and quickly.

—definitely agree with you, I think he’d be better off batting exclusively from the left side, even if he has to be plantooned on occasion. He just looks awful batting right handed.

I know full well that you can’t win every game, but this game seems like Little didn’t care whether we won or lost. Hopefully everybody will be well rested for another week. I personally don’t like Little, and pulling a lineup like this just reinforces that feeling. Looking for the team to come together for a strong season in spite of him.

Betemit and Seanez are beyond worthless

Hrmm Grady must not have wanted to win tonight.

Max… can it will you? You’re becoming WAY beyond worthless with all your negativity. I can’t remember the last time you actually posted something positive… and this team has the best record in baseball right now! One can only imagine how you’ll respond when we go through our first losing streak, and I for one don’t want to see you commit suicide.

why does Grady keep Seanez in for two innings? why does Seanez even make the team?! Betemit couldn’t hit water if he fell out of a boat. Atleast play Valdez. Lowe had a bad night it was obvious from the start. Leaving pitches up i bet he had more fly ball outs then ground outs.

i don’t see how grady doesn’t see these things we all see. I hope he doesn’t give everyone the night off on the same night again either.

What i saw was grady giving most of our ‘A’ team the night off for 2 reasons

1) they need the rest.

2)It’s cold in Denver at night and tomorrow is such an early game he wants those guys rested and ready for the noon T off. Valdez will get the nod at 3rd.

Now if you would just chill everything will be fine because you are starting to get on my nerves also Max.

reyloveselaine “I know that Andy LaRoche numbers are not that great, but he is really turning it around. Betemit is horrible. Lets bring up Andy!

BELIEVE IN LaRoche!”

I don’t wanna come off like I dislike Betemit but I saw him play in the Dominican winter league on tv & he really didn’t look that impressive I’m sure he’s a nice guy & I hope he turns it around but he really hasn’t look good. Hoping he turns it around though.

1) I am all for the VOTE FOR MARTIN! post
2) Does anyone know the code for the Dodgers V Pirates game friday for the special field tickets 4 for $76? I thought is was tix76 but I was wrong. PLEASE HELP!

Sorry max, nothing personal, but I agree with above posters. You complain a lot and have little constructive to add to the discussion, and it gets a little old. “i don’t see how grady doesn’t see these things we all see. I hope he doesn’t give everyone the night off on the same night again either.” What a dumb comment. Yeah, you’re right. This guy lives with the team for 7 months, and he doesn’t pay attention or think about his decisions. You’re really onto something there.

I was at the game at Coors tonight. Got there late due to traffic, just in time to see Ethier nail his triple. Then I noticed the lineup…questionable benching 3 of our best clutch hitters on the same night, and I think it ended up hurting. But, from Little’s perspective before the game, he probably figured that Hendrickson would need the run support more than Lowe. A fair thought, but too bad he was wrong.

All things about the game aside – on the way to my car, I hear some commotion from some fans to my right. I look over, and realize I’ve been walking fairly close to Vin Scully for about a quarter of a block. I run to my car and grab a camera and chase him about a half of a block down the street. When I get closer behind him, I yell “Mr. Scully!” Unfortunately, he didn’t even turn around a bit, and I just figured it was late and he maybe didn’t want to be bothered. So instead of getting my ticket signed, I just took a picture of him walking away, for the memory’s sake. So one day, when my kids ask “Dad, why did you take a picture of that man’s *** and then frame it?” I’ll say “Kids, that’s not just any man’s ***. That’s Vin Scully’s ***. Be sure to bow your head in deference whenever you look at this picture.”

On the way home, I regretted not being more forward in trying to get an autograph…but I do have a picture of his backside. Good enough for now.

you guys know what you can get out of certain players. Lowe is good but he had an off night which is normal. I just don’t see how Grady can stick with guys like Tomko and Hendrickson or Lugo last year. Specially with Seanez tonight. He got light up in his last outings there was a great chance of him getting light up again tonight too. Yet he was out there for two innings and the game got out of hand.

Betemit hasn’t hit since last July. He had a terrible spring and a terrible winter ball. He has potentinal but honeslty Andy LaRoche can’t be any worse and has way more upside then Betemit.

As for tonight…i understand guys need days off but why can’t grady plan them for different days. You can’t go into a game with your 4-5-6 guys out of the lineup and expect to have a competitive game.

Hendrickson throws tomorrow. He has been great out of relief this year and last. We all what he did last year in the Rotation. There is a good chance he’ll get roughed up tomorrow and there’s a chance he will throw 5 or 6 solid innings but odds are he’ll get roughed up. Why not give someone else a shot. Like Billingsley or DJ Houlton. Houlton has been lights out in Triple A so far. He’s 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA 15 K’s 5 BB in 16.1 innings pitched.

Andy La Roche cannot play defense…. we all know this- I just feel like he gets nervous when he gets a shot, and rarely takes advantage of the opportunities he gets. He is always good in the minors, but always bad in ST– there is something to be said about that. Also, just to reiterate, his defense was horrible. I’d pull my hair out watching him bungle the most routine plays…

Ewk216…Brad Penny has awful spring trainings but he does well in the regular season. The rate Betemit is going he wont hit over .200 this season. Why not give La Roche a shot. You can’t prove you’re a major league player in the minors.

M Hendrickson
LAD 0 0 1.64 3 0 0 0 0 0 11.0 4 2 2 1 0 1 11

Max how short is that memory of yours and very selective too.You Don’t remember DJ getting lit up like a christmas tree the ENTIRE time we had him up!Those are great AAA numbers but hendrickson’s are in the show and against teams that were T ing off against Schmidt(not that he was throwing more then batting practice pitches).Hendrickson was horrible and sought help he has since been very tough and I for 1 and by the posts and what management is doing all agree he has earned this chance to start a game. I fully agree with ewk216 LaRoche is a huge defensive liability and is not swinging the bat well yet. The ONLY thing I question is what about Abreu??? He started atleast 1 game I saw in Vegas at 3rd base (no E) and is still killing the ball like ST. He showed alot of flash with the Leather and is in a good frame of mind. That kid is gonna be our Next Monster Rookie if he gets a shot before Kent retires.Kemp went 0fer tonight but will be back soon.

Pup That story was hilarious! Sorry you had to see the ‘b’ team but atleast Eithier is showing his stuff.

Back to topic in what I read tonight on the decisions made and the lineup what Grady did is to rest the tired but productive players against what would have been a tough pitcher to have then fresher for a more hittable pitcher and expected Lowe to be able to **** it up and he did **** but Lowe is always a break even pitcher early in the season he is the Stretch run Pitcher along with Bills,Schmidt and Penny,Tomko,Hendrickson,Wolf and the starting rotation of Vegas to fill the last 1/2 spots for the playoffs.All sid and done this was a loss but I won’t complain about it nor even remember it after 3pm because it was just a game in 162 and we have all the pieces within the 40 man Roster to go all the way this year.

Go Blue 2007!!!

Max… gotta hand it to you… at least you try. I don’t understand how you can even compare veteran pitcher Brad Penny’s spring history to that of a rookie infielder like Andy LaRoche. They are two entirely different scenarios altogether. I’d much rather see Abreu given a shot at third than Andy LaRoche at this point in the season. Andy will get his shot… but once here he’s got to prove himself worthy of playing… much like Martin, Ethier and Kemp have.

Right now the Dodgers do not have themselves a legitimate third base prospect, one that has the defensive and offensive capabilities this team so desperately needs. Betemit’s body language walking back to the dugout after his at bats is an indication that he’s lost at home plate. If he could get on track offensively, we’d be set. Maybe he should spend some time with Hendrickson’s sports psychologist… anything to get that bat of his going again. 9 homers last year wasn’t a fluke and his .959 fielding percentage is awfully good to have. But Grady isn’t going to be too patient with his below .100 batting average for very much longer. The time is now for Betemit… or else… it’s time for plan B, and in my humble opinion, I think Abreu should be given a shot playing third base.

Yes, Abreu is the man. He deserves a shot. On Little’s resting personnel, that’s fine
but, he did the same thing last year. When he decides to rest a player, he should do it, one at a time, NOT Three.

In re; to betemit, I believe it was Jose Valentine, who decided to end switching and Bat, stricktly from the left side and continue switching

during BP. It worked for him. That was a few yrs. ago….

I should also mention, that Raffy needs a day off. He’s pressing and striking out, too much. he must be batting 100 point less than Pierre.
Something is wrong, with Furcal ????

All i can say is, “maybe next time”, i for one dont think this was that bad of a line up as i posted earlier yesterday, well aside from the whole Betemit thing, but hey we had a bad game with a couple of bad plays and a loss we are still in first place and hey we have a game today that i will be listening to while i work away. I dont think yesterdays lineup had anything to do with Grady’s skill level as a coach he made a decision and we all have to just go with the flow and hey let’s remember that this is why he gets paid to do this, so for all you Grady haters out there ease up and lets see how the season ends up not just a series or a game. Also i agree with ya pat Raffy is certainly pressing and i think the cause of it is not just that hes not swinging very well i think its more he is not being patient and taking some pitches, last night on all of his at bats except for one i think he was swinging at the first pitch (granted he made a horrible swing on a 2-0 count) but i think he will get things going and then the all **** is gonna break loose on opposing pitchers. Maybe he should bat 2 look what its done for Pierre.hahaha

Dang it i forgot again
PS

VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!! VOTE 4 MARTIN!!!

“Right now the Dodgers do not have themselves a legitimate third base prospect”

how can you call La Roche not a legitimate prospect? are you kidding me? you must have based that on his 0 major league apperences. The fact is La Roche is the top prospect in one of the richest farm systems in the league. He has to have SOME talent. He hit 19 home runs last year with a torn labrum.

Houlton can’t do much worse then Hendrickson. Billingsley would be better but he’s not a “proven veteran”. Too bad Billingsley didn’t lose 7 straight decisions last year..maybe he’d get a shot.

Nomar has the night off tonight. Killer TOmato is starting. I wonder if Grady will bench Furcal and Pierre so we could have 3 starters out of the line up at the same time for the second night in a row.

why are people panicking over Furcal? He missed the last two weeks of ST. Played two minor league games and now he’s back to playing in the big leagues. Also remember last year he started off slow in april.

Max,

You are really annoying.

instead of calling me annoying, which i could careless if you or anyone else thinks that or not, why don’t you try and counter my points? give me a reason why Hendrickson deserves this shot or why La Roche isn’t a legit prospect. Or why it was smart for Grady to rest our three hotest bats on the same day and not spread then out over a couple of days?

I didn’t really think your points needed refutation. I think, rather, that you should apply to manage the Dodgers in ’09 or whenever it is Grady’s contract is up. You seem to know a lot better than he does.

“With Thursday’s day game following Wednesday’s night game, Little felt the seniors had to miss one of the games, and their success against Thursday starter Aaron Cook forced the manager’s hand. He also wanted Martin to catch Mark Hendrickson, who makes his first start of the season Thursday in place of the injured Jason Schmidt.”

I didn’t even have to refute you. Gurnick had already provided a pretty sensible analysis.

The person who said LaRoche isn’t a legit prospect didn’t say that. He said he was not a legit 3B prospect. He’s awful defensively so far, so he’s not a legit 3B prospect. He’s a legit hitting prospect.

Hendrickson gets this start today simply because of the toll on Bills earlier in the week – Bills isn’t fresh, Hendy is, and he’s been pitching better this season regardless.

But please, continue enlightening us day after day about how awful the Dodgers’ manager is.

there is no logical reason why he rested those 3 players on the same day. Spread them out next time please!

LaRoche is a legit 3b prospect. His defense may be suspect at times but so is Betemit’s. Like i said before he is the number one prospect for the team for a reason.

Will someone, please send me the website, for the 51’s…
Thanks….

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