A day to regroup

That was a pretty tough loss yesterday (and Friday), as both games were games that we could have won. Not much more you can say about it other than needing a huge homestand against the two teams ahead of us. A sweep of the Padres would put us right back in the mix for the wild card going into the Diamondbacks series and a sweep there would put us right back in the division race. OK, it’s unrealistic to think we’ll sweep the homestand, but five out of six would be nice.

Meanwhile, I know that a couple weeks ago, I told everyone to keep an eye out in Wednesdsay’s L.A. Times for a cool article but it got pushed back a few days and ran yesterday. In case you missed it, here it is.

Otherwise, not much going on over here today. Enjoy the "off day."

107 Comments

very cool article. I’d like to see if i could do that.

Peavy is a punk. I’d like to beat him tomorrow night even if we were 20 games out..or up.

Neat article indeed!

I’m sure plenty of fans would be willing to donate to a charity for the opportunity to set foot on the field. Maybe the Dodgers can look at organizing something like this on a bigger scale, where fans can have a bit of fun, set a careful foot on the field, and help a charity along the way. I know I would! ( Provided the event is on the same day as a game somewhere, since I drive 2 hours to get to Dodger Stadium when I come down for a game ).

Two straight sweeps are alot to ask for. Five of six would be great. Right now, I’d settle for 4 out of 6 to get back into it. Our chances on winning the division are slim-next to none unless divine intervention kicks in. Getting the wild card is a more realistic reach.
Tick tock, the clock is ticking. It’s time to get hot now at the right time going head to head against the other division teams. I’m worried the Gnats will come in the end of the season, and play the spoiler like they’ve done so many times before. As Yogi would say; “It’s Deja Vu all over again.”

“This bullpen has been worked pretty hard and he still had good stuff,” Little said of letting Penny bat. “It was all in my mind to leave him out there until he got a baserunner.”

This is a problem people. Why is he thinking like this? Why is he intent on putting the bullpen in a position to fail. Penny was hit by a pitch, and was already tired, he should not have been allowed to start the 8th inning.

5 out of 6 on the homestand is not very unrealistic. If the Dodgers play in must win mode and Grady…never mind!! Anyways, if we can take 5 out of 6 in spite of Grady, we are right back in it, because we go to Colorado, where we’ve had moderate success, for 4 and to Arizona, where we’ve had great success, for 3 more. I am more worried about the 3 at home against the Pads than the next 7 on the road. I know that it’s easier said than done, but if we look at it just on the surface, the Dodgers are ONLY 2.5 games out of the wild card which is pretty amazing considering…

Drew is just 7 for 43 (.163) in his last 15 games.

Thank God we don’t have that heartless no hustle money hungry player!!

By the way I’m going to the Ravine on Thurs. & Sat. Is Bills and Penny pitching those days? anyone know?

Yep thank god we don’t have Drew. I wouldn’t trade making the playoffs for having that guy on our roster for anything. I am so much happier with the non money hungry players we have now. It’s so much better

5 out of 6 from the top two teams when we can only take 1 of 3 from the worst place gnats? we sure do like to take the long way around.

Our problems are bigger. Why was Grady even thinking of sitting Loney Friday to start Nomar and Shea? How can thought even enter your mind? I’d be embarrassed to even say I had changed my mind. Sept. 7th, and he finally realizes Loney needs to play everyday.

Those 3 games in August when he started Saenz over Loney when Saenz was batting .180 and batted 4th…would be nice to get back.

2.5 games back? How long have we been sitting here? We’ve wasted another week and had 2 chances to move up, but we didn’t.

Over the past 10 games, we’ve gained 1 on the pads & 0 on the phils. now, only 19 more to go.

I hope we do pull it out, but I can’t say i’m not worried. These 2 games with the gnats were golden chances all wrapped up…

1. Loney not starting from day 1

2. Kemp not starting from day 1

3. Nomar/Pierre playing all the time

4. Bills not starting from day 1

5. Tomko and Hendu in rotataion for 30 starts

just these 5 small moves have cost us at least 5-10 games….

Josh, tell Frank to replace Ned with Logan White. We can not lose Logan White. Logan White is to the dodgers what Slash is to Guns N Roses.

LOL!!! Ned Colletti will not get fired just to keep Logan White from taking another job. I agree that Logan is a major factor in the success of the Dodgers because of his scouting ability, Colletti will be the GM for a long time and I believe that Frank McCourt will give him a bigger budget to play with next season. Ned will use that budget to redeem himself from this past offseason which was horrific. Colletti has done enough good in the past month or 6 weeks to have job security with the Dodgers.

How do you know he will redeem himself? Logan White knows talent. Ned has proved that he doesn’t know talent. Come on Man, Juan Pierre for 5 years!?! Juan Pierre is a good player, but not a 5 year player! lol

thunderbolt507, notice i said that this last off season was horrific. I seriously doubt that Colletti gets fired. Ned is not as bad a GM as you make him out to be. He will take this team to the next level, but he needs to change his manager. It doesn’t matter who or what changes Colletti makes, Grady is not going to take this or any team to the summit. Ned Colletti’s next big move should be to fire Grady, not McCourt firing Colletti to keep Logan White.

jungar’s list:

1.Loney not starting from day 1

2. Kemp not starting from day 1

3. Nomar/Pierre playing all the time

4. Bills not starting from day 1

5. Tomko and Hendu in rotatation for 30 starts

That’s not really 5 different things since some of them depended on the other. Believe me, I was one of those Dodgers fans screaming the loudest when Pierre was signed and Kemp was demoted. As much as I agree, I don’t see how someone can pin all these on Grady Little. It was Ned who signed Pierre, Gonzeo, and re-signed Nomar, displacing Loney and forcing an Ethier/Kemp platoon. It was Ned who brought in Tomko and offered arbitration to Hendrickson, pushing Billingsley out of the rotation.

I don’t know if Little ever made a stand and we’ll probably never know if exactly how he felt about the hand he was dealt but the blame from your list is shared by the two men.

Ned has misfired with nearly every signing he has done the past 12 months and at some point will have to be held accountable. However, if he signs no more aging or overrated players and Kemp, Martin, Ethier, Abreu, Hu, Bills, Broxton, and others continue to develop and eventually lead the Dodgers to the World Series championship all of us Dodgers fans so deeply crave, Ned will be a “hero” and all will be forgotten regarding his disastrous 2007 free agent signings and trades.

Two second half swoons in two years. And I mean MAJOR swoons. Job-costing swoons. This just can’t keep happening. I NEVER remember that happening under Lasorda…Russell…Johnson…even Tracy, heaven help us.

Davey Johnson? I hate grittle as much as the next guy. But choosing Davey Johnson over Mike Sciocia cost us!

FIRE GRADY LITTLE

FIRE NED COLLETI. See livnlegend’s post for reasons

I agree livin, i’ts a philosophy change that is needed which is what I am pointing out. Yep all 5 basically same the same thing that we don’t trust kids until it is to late..Ned would rather go with the proven piece of mediocrity then go with young talent that still needs to learn a little..

So no I don’t pin anything on Grady. I really don’t and never have. That may be wrong, but it’s how I feel. I pin it on Coletti, who mind you in my opinion was just as bad in 2006 he just got lucky…his team was mostly in place and I think luck brought him Ethier and Saito and I think that the only good move he made was to bring in Maddux, but then thats sorta a no brianer.

diehardblu – Looks like you done good – Barring the unforeseen, you get Bills on Thursday and Penny on Saturday.

GO DODGERS!

PS: Gee Wiz, the Groundhogs even come out on the off days. Give it a rest, guys.

wait fan53

Loiaza -Tues.

Lowe- Wed.

Wells- Thurs.

Bills-Fri

Penny- Sat.

IS that right?

i think gradys done a good job this season, but now its crunch time. ive never been one to talk about lineups but it think its should be this THE REST OF THE SEASON if we want our best chance to get into the playoffs. personalities( gonzo and nomar) get tossed out the window:

furcal

pierre

kemp

kent

ethier

martin

loney

laroche

with this and our pitching i think we can make the playoffs and do well in them. i have faith in grady to do wat he thinks will give us the best chance to win. god knows that the players have to be fired up..ino i am. this is the best time of the year and the best week of the season. LETS GO DODGERS!!

I’ll be the first to admit I defended Nomar being in the lineup on Friday but after watching him all weekend there is nothing to defend.

He looks un-confident and he looks defeated out there. I think that bad energy along with good energy is contagious.

I don’t understand how one day he is protecting our clean up hitter and then 2 days later is batting 8th.

Grady obviously sees it.

So other than ego and because we owe him 10 million next year, why not just play LaRoche. If he is half as good as the players he has been rated higher than prospect wise (Kemp, Martin, Loney) then just roll the bones with him already. He can play the bag as well as Nomar/Shea. And even if can’t hit he may walk at least.

diehardblu – I was going off of this, but it has been incorrect in the past:

http://losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com/news/probable_pitchers.jsp?c_id=la

GO DODGERS!

This is my line up on my nintendo(PS3)scre w egos!

Pierre

Martin

Loney

Kemp

Kent

Ethier

Laroche

Furcal

The Dodgers are bigger than any name on the back. If they don’t like it they should go play in frisco. The line up is not made of concrete if guys get real hot they should move down, just if a guy cools off you move him down.

move up… oops

kahliforni: “Peavy is a punk. I’d like to beat him tomorrow night even if we were 20 games out..or up.”

Too funny!

I can’t wait for Russell to take his sweet time stepping into the batter’s box and Peavy yelling at him to get in there. This time Russell will do the right thing.

Man, I was so disappointed at Russell for doing nothing last time. He should have yelled back to Peavy that he would get back in the box when he was **** well ready, or he should have told him to shut up. That would have caused Peavy to flame out and possibly throw at Russell and get tossed, or cause a bench-clearing brawl (a GREAT morale booster). It definitely would have changed the outcome of that game.

GO DODGERS!

Please guys, let’s not hate on Jake Peavy. He’s going to be a Dodger in 2010. So, no fighting

FIRE BOTH COLLETI AND LITTLE!!

yeah um…Id prefer it if our players handled themselves with class. Just because Peavy is a total punk (and the whole league knows it) doesn’t mean the Dodgers have to react to it. The best way to get back at Peavy is to score on him. Playing little games with him probably isn’t going to help.

Jungar–I am going to take issue with 1.5 issues on your list, but I agree with the rest–each of those could be worth 2.5 games on the year.

First–the “half”–about Nomar and Pierre. I think you’re about half right on those points. For most of the season, Nomar has been our best option at 3B. It’s really, REALLY, frustrating to see him time and time again make out first pitch swinging, but I view that as a coaching problem. And I do think that LaRoche should have been given more opportunity, along with Abreu too, but LaRoche did NOT have a good spring, and both have had injury spells. So, while I agree that LaRoche is the way of the future (and maybe right now), Nomar has been the best option. Also on that “half” is Pierre, because when he has done well, and you have to give him credit over the last month, he has been very successful. Though, I would agree that if we are going to rotate Kemp and Ethier, we should rotate Pierre too.

Here’s the full point, and a lot of people feel strongly about this, but I do not think that it was a mistake to have Bills start the year in the bullpen. In terms of the Dodgers winning the pennant this year, I agree that Billingsley in the starting rotation from Opening Day might make a 2.5 game difference like the rest, meaning that it could easily cost us the pennant. BUT–as a long-term matter, it’s a good move. 4 years ago, Bills was pitching in High School, and that’s what, 40 games? He turned 23 this year, and the conventional wisdom, such as it is, is that a pitcher’s arm does not fully mature until he’s 25. There are way too many young pitchers who have had their arms ruined by overuse (Mark Prior, Kerry Wood, maybe Francisco Liriano). So, letting Bills pitch out of the ‘pen, giving him time to get into the big league groove, learn his stuff and the hitters, and not kill his arm. That’s particularly important with his occassional tendency to throw too many pitches, and it’s clear from the end of this season that his pitch count is consistently lower, which takes some wear off his arm.

He has so far proven to be resilient, and he’s certainly going to get a full season next year, but even if it costs us a playoff chance this year, I think it ended up being a wise decision to treat him with caution. A healthy Chad Billingsley is likely to be an ace pitcher for years to come.

They’re coming home, they’re on their way to your beautiful city, your golden skies, your city lights, your city streets lined up with palm, your suntan look, your shinny swimming pools, yes the Dodgers are coming home to you Los Angeles, WELCOME THEM.

Pierre,
You are ever the optimist! I like that about you! Yes, they are coming home! I for one am ready to be back at our beloved Dodger Stadium and be able to hear Vin and Nancy Bea!

I made the trip to S.F. to watch the boys in Blue on Saturday! My friend Erik, my brother and I sang our hearts out “I Love L.A” at the end of the game.

Josh: I am the lady that asked you if Loney was playing and then asked you for you name. Like I said, I love this site and all the inside information you supply it. Go Blue! Beat Peavy!

FIRE GRADY FIRE GRADY FIRE DRADY FIRE GRADY!!!!

leek… good points on Billingsley. Though I don’t think it was intentionally done for that reason, putting bills in the pen to start the year did cut down on his innings during a crucial time in his development. However, one could also argue that the adjustments such as having to hurry your warm-up routine, throw in higher stress situations, and generally the mentality to fire it away with all you got as a relief pitcher could have caused higher risks for Bills. Still, I’m all for preserving out young stud ace’s arms. I’d like to see less 105+ pitch count games from him though.

our*

Billingsley’s arm is the last thing about him we have to worry about. He’ll probably never have any serious arm trouble with those legs of his.

Plus he has nice, smooth, and easy to repeat mechanics.

I guess, it was just NOT meant to be…Salazar, PH dinger ( 1st )one, in the ninth last night, to win the game for the snakes. And against Hennessey. I just could not believe that pitch.
Such, is life. The hated Giants, did it again…..

Lee let me address your well thought out post.

1. Chad threw more innings last year and the year before than he is on pace to throw this year. So I don’t really buy it. To me it was a simple economic decesion. If they were trying to protect his arm as you belive, then I belive you are right. I would also be cautaious. But I don’t think that was it.

2. Nomar has a career batting average of .367 on the first pitch. The only count he is better at is 3-0 and has had 15 3-0 counts in his career, count them. 15! 3-0 counts in his career, in 5200 ABs!. So it’s not coaching. Nomar hits this way. Always has.

3. Nomar has not been our best option at 3b all year. That honor goes to Wilson who was traded. He had the best mixture of power and patience. But I will concede Nomar being the best based on traditional stats such as rbi and batting average. But it’s very debateable. Again it’s an economic choice and a nostalgic choice. Nomar really can be that good. Even I get ******** and have to remind myself that this is not 1999.

4. What isn’t debatable was Nomar was chewing up 300 Ab’s at first base when Loney should have been. But you agree with that I think. Same with Kemp and whoever out there, but to be fair, he was our starting RF out of spring before he got hurt…it just seemed like it took him a while to get back and also once back, to play regularly.

5. I am on record as saying that even when Pierre is doing well for him (which he has benn doing very well for him lately) I still don’t think he is any good. He trys hard and he is likabale but to me not the type of player to have. No power, no arm. No bunting skills to compliment his game. Steals don’t excite me, gap power does and he is usless to me. I admit, that’s just my bias but I am not alone. I would much rather have 25 less steals but 20 more extra base hits out of someone in my 2 hole.

Lee I enjoy our back and fourth as it is always respectful. I am like you in that I care so much which is why I want to win so bad, but really don’t care who is playing as long as we are winning.

I do have a bias towards kids and that’s mainly because I feel that they are the future down the road so I would rather see LaRoche go 0-4 versus seeing Nomar go 0-4

Jason wants more power in his 2 hole…. hahahahaha

Hilarious.

I pretty much just looking to next year. Kemp and Ethier in the 3 and 4 spots will be great. Now the Dodgers need a clean-up hitter.

Great post jungar! I agree with what you have said. Part of me would feel better if some of these glaring personnel mistakes were just admitted to, but I know that they never will be. Management will find some ridciulous reason why Bills wasn’t starting sooner, the kids weren’t up and starting everyday sooner, etc. Even though those are the very decisions that probably cost us the postseason.

what is so wrong with wanting power in the 2-hole? Alot of teams employ that strategy.

The Dodgers had Bills in the pen to start the season because the wanted him to learn to pitch at the big league level. When he was called up last year he threw a lot of pitches early in the game and couldn’t last but about 5 innings. They wanted him to learn how to minimize his pitches per inning while still facing big league hitters. I think it was a great move because now he is more consistant.

bills 7-2 3.16era in the 2nd half last year.

well before everyone freaks out later when Shea is starting at 3b tonight..

.368/.500/.737/1.237 his career vs Peavy.

Yeah I hear all that Cameron. I still think it was an economic decision with them using the excuse of him learning how to pitch. I mean I agree that there were far to many pitches thrown etc. But bottom line, its better than Tomko/Hendu.

Last year while not “knowing how to pitch at the big leauge level” he went 7-2 in 11 starts after the all star break with a 3.16 era.

This year in 12 starts since the all star break he is 5-4 with a 2.92 era.

So I call Bull-bleep. I say that if you gave Chad Tomko’s 8 starts before the break, at the very least he would have won more than one game and thrown better than 60IP of 6.18 era basbeball.

I agree 100% but you can’t tell me he was a better pitcher last year just because of is W-L record. He’s thrown alot of games over the past 2 months that he should’ve won. But I agree he would have done alot better than Tomko and Hendy.

Thats not what I am saying at all. He is better this year.

But even with his faults last year he won 7 and lost 2 showing a tencaity and determination of an ace, but throwing like a rookie. Making mistakes ,nibbling etc..but we all know Tomko is the opposite. Great stuff but no tenacity…and Hendu needs a shrink just tp pitch…so…

Josh,
Saturday’s game – seems to now be at 12:55pm. My tickets say 7:10pm. Which is the correct time?

I get what your saying now jungar. I think we can all agree that we wish he would have been in the rotation instead of Tomko. However I do think the move helped him in the long run.

I do too.

I think it’s almost two seperate conversations. Like Lee said (and you), if they did it for his development than really I am all for it. I will glady loose this season for winning consistently with home grown talent the next 4-5 seasons..I just don’t belive thats why. Just like how Loney couldn’t start at 1b cause Nomar couldnt play 3b anymore. well last I checked..Nomar was starting at 3b. They just lie to fit their needs at the momment it’s needed.

But my orginal post was in response to why we might not make the playoffs and Tomko and Hendu each throwing more innings than Chad Billingsley is one reason why.

I think it’s pretty obvious that the brain trust known as Colleti/Little prefer vets over kids…which is a REAL safe way to go in sports. But not necessarily a way that ensures success. I think both have learned a very valuable lesson about trusting your prized assets, the ones they refused to trade…but refused to play with regularity. I understand the counter argument about protecting psyches and not rushing the farmhands, and hind-sight on our parts as bloggers is always 20-20. But when the club played so poorly in August and “promised” shake-ups never materialized until the season was darn near lost, I have to question the collective wisdom of Colleti/Little. As Bobby Knight once said, and I paraphrase, Colleti/Little have forget more about this game than I’ll ever know. I admit it. But they still get a D- grade from this here fan on their handling of the roster this year. They looked a big, old gift horse right in the mouth. A gift this organization has been grooming for many years.

angelnodal: “Josh, Saturday’s game – seems to now be at 12:55pm. My tickets say 7:10pm. Which is the correct time?”

I’m not Josh, but check out the left column of this page:

http://losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com/schedule/index.jsp?c_id=la

GO DODGERS!

By the way, what have you guys been feeding my boy Broxton? All of a sudden he’s giving up the long ball. I know the pressure isn’t getting to him. Does he look tired to anyone. I watched him the other day and he only topped out at 95!

russell martin would be the perfect player to bat second.

I couldn’t agree more. Good contact hitter and loves to hit the ball to right field.

He really is ideal as far as I am concerned, I agree Radiohead…. a little power and speed combo in the 2 hole, kirby? I know you love it…lol

this would be line up the rest of the year.
raffy ss

martin c

kemp rf

kent 2b

loney 1b

ethier lf

nomar/laroche 3b

pierr cf

id prefer this as the line up for the rest of the year

pierre cf

martin c

kemp rf

kent 2b

loney 1b

ethier lf

nomar/laroche/abreu/shea 3b

furcal ss

(pitcher)

it’s easier to pitch to pierre because of the non homerun affect, furcal still has some pop. furcal almost automatic int. walk batting 8th.

Both line ups are nice, but it’s too bad that LaRoche will not get every start at 3rd and Gonzo will get 1/2 the starts left in left… You would think that Grady would go with the young guys down the stretch and let them earn their wings..LOL!!! Yeah right!!

i still think he will, but my fingers have been crossed since the end of august.

californiaautorebuilder@hotmail.com ,
true dat

i just am more comfortable with pierre getting on base and scoring a run at this point.. rather than furcal

Anybody here going to spring training next year?????

CalAuto I am planning on driving down to Florida to watch some of the spring training games. I think the Dodgers play in Arizona so I don’t think I will be able to see them. My best friend is a diehard Mets fan and he wants to go down there next year during spring break. Sorry I haven’t been posting very much as of late everyone, I have been busy with school starting back up.

I can’t wait for ’09 when the Dodgers move their spring training here to Arizona.. I’ll be there

Kiper, Where is the Dodgers spring training next year??? and Kiper if you don’t mind me asking… how old are you man. I am guessing you are above 40 just because you were so offended about that comment I made about Grady being a @#$%#@.

swood, first of all, you didn’t offend me, I was worried about you looking like an immature kid by the comments you were making. Secondly, I am 42 yrs. old and third, the Dodgers will still be in Vero Beach next season.

Me me, me! I can’t wait! This will be my second time to Vero Beach! I just got to go for my last chance to see Vero Beach. Anyone that has never been there, try to go! You will regret NOT going!

Thank you for your concern Kiper. I am glad they will still be in Florida so I will get to see them. For some reason I thought they were going to Arizona next season. Kiper, how come your not a D-Backs fan considering you live in AZ.

The area where they are going to build their facility in Arizona is fantastic. They are in the same area as the University of Phoenix Stadium (Cardinals) and about 4 miles from the Peoria Baseball Complex, where the Pads and Mariners train. This area is also going to be hosting the Super Bowl in February so it is a hot spot, really growing like wild fire. They are building hotels, shops, malls, restaurants and bars on every corner. By the time the Dodgers arrive it will really be a great area. Come on out.

swood, I have been a Dodger fan since I was 5 yrs old and I would first root for the Yankees before I would root for the DBacks. I do not like them and I do not like the members of it’s team, namely Randy Johnson and Eric Byrnes. Go Blue!!!

Personally I think there is a legit chance that we may sweep San Diego. Tonight will be the toughest test though, Loaiza vs. Peavy. I hate Peavy and I hope we really rough him up. Peavy looked horrible in his last start and hopefully the breaks will start coming our way, we are due for some after that Giants series. I am so sad the season is ending…

Here are the most talented teams in the NL in my opinion…

1.Mets

2.Cubs

3.Braves

4.Phillies

5.Marlins

6.Brewers

7.Rockies

8.Padres

9.Us

10.D-Backs

11.Pirates

12.Reds

13.Giants

14.Cardinals

15.Astros

16.Nationals

I would love feedback from everyone on this list.

leaving fro lax, what airport should one land in florida, this will be my first trip out there.

Actually looking back on the list I think I should have moved the Brewers down some… Their starting pitching isn’t good enough for them to be that high.

Calauto why in the world would you fly all the way to spring training when you could ride your bike to Dodger Stadium for every regular season home game???

i’ve always wanted to see Vero Beach, and this will be the last time to see the dodgers there.

You have the Dodgers with the ninth best talent?????

WOW??

the pads,marlins,braves,cubs are you kidding?

yeah swood you would do so much better than colletti.

and the bell has rung for the first round people.!!!!!

I’d put Dodgers in the top five, talent wise. Talent is a funny thing, though. Which players on which teams would you want as a Dodger? Braves, Phils, and Mets each have three I’d want (Chipper, Hudson, Smoltz…Utley, Rollins, Howard…Reyes, Wright, and Beltran but that’s it for stacked teams. Pujols, Peavy, Miguel Cabrera, obviously these are studs. But I’ll bet LOTS of teams would take Martin, Penny and Saito right now. And with all the young talent in baseball. not may teams would turn down Billingsley and Kemp. So it’s hard to rate teams according to talent. But, swood, you have three of my teams in your top four so you’re on to something. But the Cubs?????

Jungar, Dodgerdude, and Cameron–thanks for responses to my post. Let me just add a few things:

1) Jungar–thanks as always for the stats you have. Who would know that Nomar has only been 3-0 15 times in his career!

2) About Bills starting in the ‘pen:

a–I don’t know if they did it to save his arm, because they wanted him to learn more about pitching in the big leagues. They may well have done it because they preferred Tomko and Hendu, which is crazy.

b–Even though Bills pitched more innings the last two years, it’s still good to save his arm. But, Exit/Max/Adrian is right–the power is in those tree-stump legs (Jonathan Meloan is similar).

c–There is more potential mental stress in the ‘pen, but as long as there is no tragedy, that’s good training for a kid too.

To sum up, I don’t know if they did it for good reasons or bad. It has certainly hurt us this year, but I think long term (assuming as we should that Bills is now properly a fixture in the rotation for years to come) it helps.

2) About Nomar–amazing stats. Let me clarify my point about coaching. When it was 1999 and Nomar was winning batting titles, hitting doubles and home runs, then as far as I am concerned, he can swing whenever he wants to. Kent frustrates me too with his tendency to do that, but then his numbers bear him out as still very good (if no longer in his prime). Nomar’s don’t. So, if you’re older and the natural talent is fading, you have to adjust with time. This is why wily veteran pitchers can adjust. And I think someone on the coaching staff needs to be able to say, even to a superstar, “you’ve got to adjust.”

3) Was Nomar or Betemit a better option at third??? I see the point that people make about Betemit, but Betemit’s numbers (including his power numbers) were absent until he finally got benched.

4) There is zero room for debate that he should not have been blocking Loney. Remember, I’m the nut with the Loney song. I had him on my fantasy team through early June (only to release him about 10 days before he finally got recalled). And you’re right that the same goes for Kemp (who has so much learning to do, and is still remarkable). He started, but once he got off the DL, was sent out to Vegas and sat there for about 6 weeks.

5) I see your point about Pierre–I’ve not wanted to get into the Pierre debate too much, because there are some things we will just have to accept. You’re right that a 2-hitter with power really is good (part of what makes Martin such a good option there–speed, contact, power), and I like extra base hits, etc. too, but it is what it is with Pierre. I am not nearly so bored by the stolen base game, and I think that it is terribly underused. Except for a Molina, the best catcher throws out runners only about 1/3rd of the time. (In fact, it always seems to me that it’s inherently difficult to throw out any runner on a tag play, because you need a better throw, a better catch, more time, and anything in the dirt could get mixed up with the runner, so I always like more aggressive baserunning). Plus, it creates havoc, so for that reason I don’t nearly mind Pierre as much (when he is playing well). But, like I said, I half agreed.

5) One more point of distinction–but I don’t think we are that different on this front–I want us to win, but would rather lose with the right players, so it does matter to me who’s playing. I am a huge supporter of the youth movement, but always have been over the years. Some of that is that the young players–espescially the core we have now–are our best options. But also I like the familiarity of guys who came up through the system. Sometimes that leads to busts like Greg Brock and Franklin Stubbs, and you have to cut them loose–but a lot of the time its Mike Piazza and Eric Karros and Orel Hershiser–and now James Loney, Russ Martin, and Matt Kemp. So I like the kids not only because they are the best players, but also because they’ll give us a better team to be a fan of for years to come.

Sorry to all for another long post. I’ll try to stop that nonsense. Be more like Max–pithy and to the point.

leekfink, you forgot to mention, bubba crosby, mike marshall, henry rodriquez. I think in most organizations there are more bust players then guys that really make it.

And the jury is still out on Andy LaRoche.

swood It appears you’re basing your list on offense alone. If you would swap the Marlins, and Dodgers, I’d be pretty close to being on the same track.
The Mets are definitely the most talented team. Love it, or hate it. Not just because they have a mostly Latino roster, but because of the overall balance. Jose Reyes is the best leadoff man in the league. Outstanding obp, wreaks havoc on the bases, and scores alot. Soriano would be second. Look how much better the Cubs are this year. When he went on the DL, the club slumped badly.

The Cubs have quite a diversified roster with lots of talent, but their pitching staff hurts them more than ours does. If they get some pitching help, they will dominate the NL Central. The Phillies can light up the scoreboard with their lineup, but they can hardly ever hold a lead due to the pathetic bullpen. Oh, and just imagine how much better the Brewers would be if they still had Carlos Lee!!!

You guys Grady is sure taking long with today’s lineup.

Of course the jury is still out on LaRoche — he hardly even plays. How can they “decide” anything?

Here is the revised list of most talented teams:
1.Mets

2.Cubs

3.Braves

4.Phillies

5.Marlins

6.Rockies

7.Padres

8.Us

9.Brewers

10.D-Backs

11.Giants

12.Reds

13.Pirates

14.Cardinals

15.Astros

16.Nationals

Diehard I hope that because I made a couple of changes you don’t call me a flip flopper… I moved the Brewers down because of their weak starting pitching and I moved the Giants up because of their strong starting pitching. I have stated before that I think the Giants will be tough in the future because of all that young pitching talent.

When you look at the very long list of players this club has let go who have go on to thrive, and prosper with other teams, and being big parts of winning the world series with other clubs, it’s depressing.
First two that come to mind for me are Pedro Martinez, and Paul Konerko.

Bottom line on Billingsley: Tomko had a “better” spring. Period. But as Kevin Kennedy says, spring training doesn’t mean much. I believe he’s been proven correct. Also, for all you bloggers over 29 years of age, in 1988 a HUGE KEY to the Dodgers eventual world championship was Brian Holton, who had a lights-out year in middle/long relief. Dodgers saw Billingsley in that role…and he was succeeding quite nicely. Had either Tomko or Hendrickson done ANYTHING to help this team, we’d be in the playoffs for sure.

I put the Marlins ahead of us because of their good young position players. They are on paper a much better team then us. The difference is they don’t execute the fundamentals. They have some good young starting pitching in Willis, Johnson, Mitre, Olsen, Nolasco, and Anibal Sanchez. The Marlins are the only team in the MLB with a worse fielding Percentage then us. Although that number is skewed a little because their guys have a little more range then ours with the exception of Furcal(Kent kills our defense).

I put the Cubs ahead of us becuase I think their pitching depth is better then ours. Ted Lilly is quietly having a very good year for them and you know Zambrano will be better for these last couple weeks. They also have the best middle reliever/setup man in the game in Carlos Marmol. I think either him Saito or Papelbon of the Red Sox lead the majors in relief ERA. Reguardless of who the leader is they are all very close. I also think the Cubs offense is better then ours, not to mention we are 2nd to last in the MLB in fielding.

Kahliforni, agree completely on the Tomko and Hendy comment.

Milwaukee is the luckiest organization ever to find Ryan Braun. Imagine if we had him. Nomore would truly be no more (my fantasy).

Tomko DID NOT have a better spring than Billingsley. Bills’ ERA was in the mid 1s.

I’d rather “find” a catcher than a 3rd baseman…OH, we did!

I don’t know who had the better spring training ERA between Tomko and Bills. I don’t think the spring training ERA is why Grady put Bills in the pen. Reguardless Kahliforni is right about if we had gotten a good year from either Tomko or Hendy we would be right up there with Arizona, but we didn’t and you have to expect that some players on the club and going to play below what you hope/expect… it’s a fact that every team has to deal with.

momoracci, where did you get that stat? Not doubting you, just wondering. What was Tomko’s?

*are

swood I can’t understand how you think the Cubs have better pitching depth than the Dodgers. I’d rank Penny, Lowe, and Billingsley better than Zambrano, Marquis, and Lilly.
In relief I’d rank Beimel, Brox, and Saito over Marmol, Howry, and Dempster.

I live 15 minutes from Dodger Stadium and have season tickets and still fly to Vero Beach. I love that place! to me is the second heaven on earth after Dodger Stadium.

I don’t think so jjriley. Lilly is better then Lowe and Bills and before Dempster blew that save vs. us he had converted like 15 in a row. Brox has been struggling as of late and his ERA is twice what Marmols is and Beimels ERA is three times Marmols.

Dempster is not even close to Saito, his save rate is close to 93%. Dempster’s ERA is like twice what Saito’s is, and his conversion rate is not even close.

Well, the lineups are posted, so it’s time to leave this one, and go to the other.

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