Slice Open the Grapefruit

Spring Training truly starts today, despite the fact that we’ve been in Vero for more than two weeks. Before I get to the lineup, which I’m sure you’re all anxious to see, I’ve got some great news about the Inside the Dodgers blog.

As I had hoped when this whole thing started more than two years ago, you’ll begin to get more contributors to the blog, including Team Travel Manager Scott Akasaki and General Manager Ned Colletti.

Scott is responsible for every plane, train, automobile, and hotel that we will travel this year, which covers more than 54,000 miles. He will be giving everyone a little insight into how we go about doing that and some of the funny things that happen along the way.

Even better, Ned came to me a few weeks ago and said that he wants to find a way to interact with the fans more often and suggested that this be the area to do so. Therefore, every couple of weeks, he’s going to answer your questions here.

It won’t be live, but if you have a question for Ned, please direct it to him in the comments. I’ll compile all the questions and he’ll pick about 10 to answer every other week or so.

So with that, happy "Opening Day"…here’s the lineup for the first part of today’s game:

Pierre, LF

Furcal, SS

Martin, C

Kent, 2B

Jones, CF

Loney, 1B

Nomar, 3B

Kemp, RF

J. Johnson, P

172 Comments

I remember when I lived in Florida, I used to go to Dodgertown every spring. It’ll be sorta sad when they head out west.

The Dodgers have a strong team this year, and I think a lot of “experts” are overlooking them in the NL West.

http://www.fightingphils.mlblogs.com

obviously Torre doesn’t know the players just yet. I just hope he figure’s it out before opening day!

I love the blog Josh keep up the excellent work.

If you want to listen to the game today, it is going to be on XM Radio this afternoon. XM Channel 176 at 1:05

Congrats on the promotion Josh!, and great news about Scott & Ned – look forward to it!

I’ve got a question for Ned. Don’t you think that the team would be better with Either as the everyday left fielder? After all he’s a more complete player with some power, a better OBP, and a good throwing arm.

Kemp batting 8th is ridiculous.

This line up is Gradyesque.

This is going to be a running theme all season until Torre stops doing it……..the fans will not be happy while Pierre and Nomar are in the lineup. The problem gets even worse when the “out machine” gets to hit leadoff and Nomar gets to hit BEFORE Kemp in the lineup.

Congrats on the promotion Josh. Since you have a new job, will you still be the guy operating this blog.

Blame Torre all u want but this, as I said all last year is a Ned problem.

We owe those 2 18 million dollars this year.

You gonna show up your boss your first day of work?

Grady lives!

You guys are amazing…1st spring game and the sky is falling…Can we just enjoy the moment?

I will be in Vero this Saturday with my boy Sandy and Sal Larocca. I do not know if anyone on here knows about Sal, but he has one of, if not the largest Dodgers memorabilia collections. He knows Dodgers baseball like no other.

I cannot wait to see ST up close and personal for the first time. I have been to 4 fantasy camps, never ST.

I will make sure I get pictures of Pierre and the boys and post them next week.

dodgerboy, I wish I was you!(except a little more pessimistic)

I want to go to a camp someday before I’m too old to enjoy it.

Can you post a picture of Pierre unleashing a strong throw to second?

Well Scott I am not sure if it is possible to get a strong throw from Pierre, but I will try. As far as the camp, you are never too old, there are people 30 to 92 years old. My father has gone 3 times with me, he is 74. It is expensive but it is the most enjoyable time. I got to hang out with Branca, Snider, Erskine and the late and great Labine. I got to meet my childhood hero Garvey, Wills, Monday, Yeager, etc….

It is a chance to be a kid again playing a game that I did not play for 20 years. My shoulder is still sore from the 200 pitches I threw in the Nov camp.

The best part is the friendships that you build with Dodgers fans across the country. I have been fortunate to build a friendship with Juan Bustabad the Midland Loons manager. He is a great manager and an even better person. As the mastercard commercial says the week is priceless.

You will never regret it. Scott how old are you? I assume you are from the LA area and the camp will be in Glendale starting in 2010 I believe. Do it man you deserve it.

As far as the pessimism part, I can be that also. Right now I choose to be an optimist because it takes too much time and energy thinking of the negative all the time.

I can show you an old blog that I was a big Pierre basher, but I decided that (I tell my kids) it is better to say something nice or do not say it. Too much negative thinking in the world.

Man the Groundhogs are out in force today!!! lol Well thank you goes out to Josh first of all for allowing us to come on here and hear from the inside. I think everything you have done for this blog is great and it does not go unappreciated, well atleast not by everyone! I am super excited to hear from Ned and I hope he doesnt get pushed away by the groundhogs who run rapid around here.

On todays lineup and game, I am super excited to start the season of baseball, us fans look forward to this day all fall and winter long and the day is finally upon us!

It is pure ignorance for those who have called our new manager Torre, “Grady Little” and no offense to Grady but Torre is light years ahead of him… you guys trip on the first lineup he puts out but what you ignore is this is a new team for him and he needs to figure out the kinks and for you to think that this is going to stick throughout the ST is another ignorance! The lineup is going to change quite a bit i believe and its sad that some cant even go through a day without player manager or Gm, its a game and just enjoy it! If you love the game you would see the beauty in a opening day and not what you think about the lineup or the manager or the players or the GM!

Thanks again for everything Josh and I look forward to hearing from both Scott and Ned!

dodgerboy i am very jealous, i am not going to get a chance to experience the beauty of ST at Vero unless they end up there again next year. Have fun and enjoy man!

No fair Scott, I’ve already been promised one by joanrich of JP bouncing his warm-up throw to Jones!

I can’t see this blog being able to come up with 10 questions a week for Ned except maybe:

1. Why is JP playing ahead of Ethier?

2. Wouldn’t Either make a better LFer than JP?

3. How can you play JP over Either?

4. When is Ethier going to get his chance in left?

5. What the reason for starting JP?

6. What about Ethier?

7. Why can’t you see the Ethier’s a better OFer than JP?

8. Who told you JP should play over Ethier?

9. How much longer do we have to play JP over Ethier?

10. Why is management enamoured by the JP train?

Neds answer: Because the D’s are so strong this year we thought it necessary to begin each game with one out as a way bring us back into equilibrium with the rest of the league, and with JP at the top, we feel we’ve reached that parity.

Now before people jump down my throat, this is just a little tongue-in-cheek humor.

But just a little…

1. Why is JP playing ahead of Ethier?
2. Wouldn’t Either make a better LFer than JP?

3. How can you play JP over Either?

4. When is Ethier going to get his chance in left?

5. What the reason for starting JP?

6. What about Ethier?

7. Why can’t you see the Ethier’s a better OFer than JP?

8. Who told you JP should play over Ethier?

9. How much longer do we have to play JP over Ethier?

10. Why is management enamoured by the JP train?

dodgerboy,

I’m 40 and I’m going to make an effort to get to the Glendale camp in coming years for sure, thanks. Also, I’m actually an eternal optimist when it comes to the Dodgers’ season, but I can’t stand playing contracts over talent – it’s just not right.

Have fun in Vero!

Question for Ned. If you had it to do over, would you sign Pierre? I am sure he will say yes to save face but I think secretly he must be having second thoughts. At least on the length of the contract.

Great video Jungar. Congratulations.

Its the 1st game of spring training and everyone is already second guesing Joe Torre. If there is 1 manager in baseball right now that shouldnt be second guessed that is Torre. Everything he does is for a reason, even though we might not understand his reasons, He has 4 world series titles and thats good enough reason for me. Just like no one understands Phil Jackson, you know you dont second guess him, because he knows alot more than us about basketball, he has 9 titles. Same with Torre, he knows alot more than everyone here, and not like Grady, Joe has the rings to prove it.

Keep up the good work, jungar

Torre has to get a look at these guys in order to evaluate who is going to start the regular season. Might as well put Nomar and Pierre in the positions that they most likely will be used and see what they can do. I think we will see LaRoche and Ethier starting spring games at 3rd and left as well to see how they perform. If I am Torre, I would be curious to see how Pierre and Nomar play so I can make an informed decision come opening day. Hopefully, if it becomes apparent that Pierre and Nomar are not the best options, then Torre will have the Kahuna’s to play Ethier and Laroche and not cave to the big contracts and experienced veteran tags.

Bill O’Reilly as a lead in to each spring game is just not going to work lol…I’d much rather have News, Traffic, Dodgers. Braves/Dodgers Play by Play coming up.

Is the game gonna be broadcasted on radio?

Well the feeds are having technical issues. No Play by Play for now. We’ll see.

Internet feeds are down. But KABC is working.

I can’t get over how Torre put our most dynamic hitter in the worst possible spot in the batting order. He gets paid $4 million to make the RIGHT decisions.

Top 1: Braves Batting: Jason Johnson Pitching:
Matt Diaz puts out

Jordan Schafer puts out

Jeff Francoeur singles

Brian McCann grounds to third

0 runs 1 hit 1 LOB End of 1/2 inning No Score

Thanks man.

“Because the D’s are so strong this year we thought it necessary to begin each game with one out as a way bring us back into equilibrium with the rest of the league, and with JP at the top, we feel we’ve reached that parity”

Thats probably the funniest thing Ive read on here. Great job!

Bottom 1: Dodgers Batting: Tim Hudson Pitching:
Juan Pierre grounds to first

Rafael Furcal triples and looks good on that ankle sliding into third

Russell Martin strikes out swinging

Jeff Kent lines to right

0 Runs 1 Hit 1 LOB End of 1 No Score

Whos the starting pitcher tomorrow? The game will be televised on ESPN.

More of the same **** from Pierre. Do we REALLY have to put up with this for 4 more years?

Kuroda is starting tomorrow, with Greg Miller following him at some point.

rickcindy it is on channel 176 on xm radio.

momoracci relax baby, breath, only 700 at bats to go. How will you last?

Top 2: Braves Batting: Jason Johnson Pitching:
Scott Thorman flies to Kemp in right

Martin Prado flies to Kemp in right

Brent Lillibridge flies out

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 1 1/2 inning No Score

dodgerboy55: No, I’m not going to “relax.” This team is my passion and I’m SICK of seeing horrible players taking up spots just because they make a lot of money.

Torre has 4 championships, believe me he knows what he’s doing.

Thanks Alex!

You are going to have a stroke. I understand, and good luck.

Yes, Torre has 4 championships; but that has NOTHING to do with putting an out machine in the leadoff spot.

Im not sure if 200 hits and a .300 avg is an out machine

Bottom 2: Dodgers Batting: Tim Hudson Pitching: Games in China will be broadcast live on KABC at 10 p.m on both game days:
Andruw Jones walks on five pitches

James Loney bloops a single to center, Jones to second

Nomar Garciaparra flies to Francoeur in right

Matt Kemp lines a single to right, bases loaded

Mark Sweeney pinch hits for Jason Johnson and singles to left, Jones scores, Loney was held up at third, Kemp kept running to third and was hung out to dry and tagged out.

Juan Pierre grounds to first

1 Run 3 Hits 2 LOB End of 2 1-0 Dodgers

Kemp needs to wake up da**it!

alex lol… not even gonna say it

How many pitches did Nomar take before his usual weak pop up?

rickcindy – No offense… 200 hits isn’t, but 500 outs is.

I hate when I make typos, I missed a “to” after “way” in my diatribe jspelk.

rickcindyh: In case you’re not familiar with OBP, it measures the amount of time you get on base. Every year, Pierre has an incredibly high amount of plate appearances, but only gets on base 33% of the time. And when he does get a hit (almost always a single), any caught stealings create even MORE outs. So yes, he is an out machine.

Top 3: Braves Batting: Tanyon Sturtze Pitching:
D. Hernandez grounds to Furcal

Tim Hudson flies to Jones in center

Diaz flies to Kemp in right

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 2 1/2 1-0 Dodgers

Think Bowa will have a talk with young Mr. Kemp soon…

great work alex!!

What the heck is so darn hard about rounding 2nd and picking up the 3rd base coach. Geez!!

Thanks Alex.

Its JD Drew syndrome: not being aware of the baserunner ahead of you.

Nomar and Pierre, inning killers.

Does that mean that Kemp will opt out after the season and we end up with another Pierre?

I sure have missed games!!! Alex – what you do for this blog is so wonderful, thanks for keeping us all up to date with the game.

I wish there was a mic on Larry Bowa, that would be great to hear!!!

GO BLUE!!!

kemp — man oh man, he better get his act together or ethier will be inheriting some PT in RF.

pierre – i don’t care how many ABs he gets in the spring or where he bats. as long as the staff gets a good look at him (and all the others), that’s all that really matters.

these at bats are FREE. if JP bats first, he’ll have more ABs to prove he can’t hack it. if he does, then more power to us. maybe they should bat laroche and nomar 2nd to give them more looks too!

Alot of you only focus on the bad things he does like his OBP and weak arm. But you dont realize all the good things he does. Hits, Avg, steals and he scores 100 runs a year. Are you guys gonna criticize Jones because he strikes out alot and doesnt hit for avg? You have to look at the good things he does like power and a gold glove. Everyone has their srengths and weaknesses

Yep, good point. The more Torre sees of Pierre, the more disgusted he will become.

Bottom 3: Dodgers Batting: Chris Resop Pitching:
Furcal strikes out

Martin reaches on an infield single deflecting off Resop and heading up the middle, Martin beat the throw from second baseman Hernandez

Kent flies to shallow right, Martin doubled up at first after going on the pitch and could not make it back to first in time

0 Runs 1 Hit 0 LOB End of 3 1-0 Dodgers

Pierre’s weaknesses out weight his strengths.

Hey jungar – cute boy!!

My baby’s looking for a studio tech job and is taller than me.

Top 4: Braves Batting: Mike Myers Pitching:
Schafer grounds to Loney who tosses it to Myers

Francoeur grounds to Nomar

McCann flies to Kemp in right

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 3 1/2 1-0 Dodgers

jhall,

200 hits and 199 of them are singles. You can’t fight the Pierre lovers, dude.

Pierre is also great in the kitchen!

That is where he belongs.

Question (regarding Kemp complaints)

Which is better?

(1) Hitting a single, (possibly moving runners around as well)and then making a base running gaff

or

(2) Grounding out to first.

1 is better by far.

Did you guys here that Shawn Green retired. I was always a big fan. class act.

I promised you all, no mas Pierre takes for me. But please fellow arguers, for and against, stick to facts. Pierre has not scored 100 runs in three seasons.

I guess what bothers me is that you all seem to think that Torre dosen’t already know what kind of player he is, as if he has to see him in spring training to understand…thats a bit nieve. Everyone knows about everyone in baseball.

If people are happy with him then great. My little boy won’t have to see it. By the time he is 5 JP contract will be up. That’s they way i’ll look at it.

Not having to ever watch and experience Pierre is truely a blessing.

Bottom 4: Dodgers Batting: Resop Pitching: Delwyn Young is now
Jones flies out to center

Loney flies out to left

Nomar singles to left, Andy LaRoche runs for Nomar

Kemp hits a ground rule double tipping off the glove of Francoeur, LaRoche would’ve scored, but is forced to go back to third

Delwyn Young (double switched for Kent and is playing second base) strikes out swinging

0 Runs 2 Hits 2 LOB End of 4 1-0 Dodgers

Your boy has a bright future jungar!

Scott – I agree that we would rather have Kemp make a single and move a runner, then have a running gaff, as opposed to JP and his weak outs, but I don’t think it needs to be one or the other. The kid could be amazing if he learned to pick up the 3rd base coach.

lol

Top 5: Braves Batting: Brian Falkenborg Pitching:
Thorman pops foul to LaRoche at third

Prado grounds to Young at second

Lillibridge grounds to Furcal

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 4 1/2 1-0 Dodgers

I’m not worried about who bats/plays when/where. It is spring training and time to work out the kinks. I think Torre and his coaches will be able to sort all of it out. Allthough it might take into May though with the split squads in different countries.

I’m not a Pierre basher or hater but when the question is posed as it was by rickcindy I can’t help but respond. It isn’t that every player is perfect, but which one is the best for what your team needs.

The point everyone keeps making about Pierre is we have better options than him, due to those stats. If the Dodgers had a player that was a better option than Jones then he should play.

At this time it is pretty clear that we don’t need a player with the skills that Pierre posseses. Pierre doesn’t do one thing great that makes him stand out. His main asset is speed and that is outweighed by the assets of the other options (Ethier DYoung).

Jungar please continue to post.

Torre probably knows about Pierre but not enough about Ethier.

Dodgerboy: I’m also glass half full kind of guy and I’m very positive for this season!! I might even put $50.00 down for a World Series Champion in honor of their 50th in LA. Also I’m lucky enough to go to Vero next week & never been. Please give me some tips of food places to go when you get back!

i’m gonna post, but yeah no more dead horse – i get worked up over it and i am such a mellow guy otherwise!!

If this were the opening day lineup, I’d be worried. But we have some time.

Of the most obvious things, Kemp should be hitting higher than 8th. I didn’t see or hear Kemp getting thrown out, but his speed is a reason that he should hit higher. As you guys know, I love Loney too, but he’s not fleet of foot. Kemp should always be thinking first to third. That Loney was held up is station-to-station type ball that we should not be playing. We do need to be able to score from second on base hits.

But, this is exactly what spring training is for. Lots of reasons to think that this will get sorted out.

And, in honor of Loney’s first hit of the Spring, I just want to remind everyone:

My Loney has a first name,

It’s J-A-M-E-S

My Loney has a second name,

It’s L-O-N-E-Y

I love to watch him every day

And if you ask me why I’ll say

‘Cause James Loney has a way

With H-I-T-T-I-N-G!

(I love Baseball!).

Bottom 5: Dodgers Batting: Manny Acosta Pitching:
Pierre bunts out to the catcher

Furcal grounds to second

Martin strikes out swinging

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 5 1-0 Dodgers

BTW–I did not catch Josh’s exact promotion, but congratulations. And also, thanks for bringing more people from the front office in. That should be some interesting stuff. Proof that the promotion (whatever it is) is well-deserved.

good post dcollins.

As far as Torre knowing about Pierre, I think there are still some baseball people out there who are stuck in the old days where Pierre’s game “looks” attractive if you don’t zoom in more and get the real facts. Are Ned and Joe these types? We will see.

If Pierre is on the team I actually like the idea of Pierre batting 1 & Raffy batting 2. Or Pierre batting 9.

Raffy has power and I think the #2 spot is better for a guy with some power. If Pierre is on and Raffy gets one in the gap, Pierre should be able to score.

Also Pierre doesn’t take pitces so it limits Raffy’s speed and basestealing. Raffy is more patient than Pierre.

I still hope that the order would start with Raffy 1 and then Ethier.

“Pierre bunts out to the catcher”

Is this a supposed strength?

yeah congrats josh..and yea collins i agree, if both play then pierre is better at leadoff

(did i jut write that-lol)

Top 6: Braves Batting: Mike Koplove Pitching: Hu now at short, Ardoin catching, Ethier in left
Hernandez grounds to Young

Brandon Jones strikes out swinging

Diaz strikes out swinging

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 5 1/2 1-0 Dodgers

Momoracci: Yes it is. He is being coy and trying to draw in the outfield for his next at bat. (Tounge in cheek).

Sorry I had to.

All the non roster invitee pitchers making a good case for themselves so far today.

Bottom 6: Dodgers Batting: Blaine Boyer Pitching:
Andre Ethier on a full count grounds to second

Jones works a walk after starting 0-2, Repko runs for Jones

Loney lashes a single to right, Repko out at third, gunned down by Francoeur

LaRoche singles to center

Kemp strikes out swinging

0 Runs 2 Hits 2 LOB End of 6 1-0 Dodgers

14 minutes since alex last posted. Hopefully something good!!

LaRoche!!! Now THIS is a real 3rd baseman.

Don’t want to run on Francoeur.

baserunning blunders a-go-go! enjoy the rest of the game guys!

BTW, just a quick calculation which included CS and GIDP – JP made 497 outs last year. Can’t be too many players making any more than that.

3 out on the basepaths in 6 innings. Looks as if there is still more work to do before they break camp!!

Pitching & hitting seem as if it is going well.

Top 7: Braves Batting: Tom Martin Pitching: Lindsey at first, Repko in center, Xavier Paul in right:
Schafer singles

Francoeur doubles down the left field line, Schafer to third

McCann grounds to Lindsey at first, Schafer scores, Francoeur goes to third, 1-1 Tie

Thorman singles to right through the drawn in infield, Francoeur scores, 2-1 Braves

Prado walks on four pitches, Thorman to second

Lillibridge forces Prado (Young to Hu, Hu’s throw goes off the glove of Lindsey), Thorman to third

Javier Guzman grounds to LaRoche at third

2 Runs 3 Hits 2 LOB End of 6 1/2 2-1 Braves

YUCK

Bottom 7: Dodgers Batting: Boyer Pitching:
Young walks

Chin-lung Hu on a hit and run lashes a perfect base hit to right field, Young to third

With Danny Ardoin batting, Hu caught stealing second

Ardoin strikes out swinging

Xavier Paul flies out to left

0 Runs 1 Hit 1 LOB End of 7 2-1 Braves

Runner at third and no outs and we don’t get the run in.
UNACCEPTABLE!!!!

Top 8: Braves Batting: Eric Hull Pitching:
Brandon Jones grounds to Young who makes a nice play to his right

Joe Borchard strikes out swinging

Schafer flies to Paul in deep right

0 Runs 0 Hits 0 LOB End of 7 1/2 2-1 Braves

Looking at the top of the 7th makes me think about that 5 for 105 stat (or whatever it was) for hits with runners in scoring position.

Even when we didn’t get hits last year in those situations the outs weren’t productive. We would get runners on 2nd & 3rd with less than 2 outs and pop to catcher or ground to 3rd.

That as well as the horrible BA with the bases loaded was one of the problems with last years team.

& it wasn’t just a youth problem. I saw some of the vets doing the same thing.

It was tiresome watching the team not take advantage of those situations and the player walk back to the dugout with his head down.

Runners in scoring position are so key and not scoring when they are there is so demoralizing to a team.

How many times did the team have like 10 + hits and only 1-2 runs and lose by a run or 2.

I’m hoping that Torre is aware of this and that it is adressed and focused on in the spring.

Okay…while typing my last post the bottom of the 7th happened.

The prosecution rests…

Base hit for Ethier. 12 hits so far and just 1 run. Pathetic.

(relist from previous post)
I think this will probably (maybe) the last post I do on the JP vs Ethier debate-

about 75% of the PA’s a player batting 1st or 2nd in the batting order experiences has either nobody on base or a man on 1st. (JP had 567 of his 729 PA’s with that) If you compare JP vs Ethier last year with either the bases empty or a man on 1st, this is what you see:

JP- .306/.342/.368/.710

AE- .283/.342/.383/.725

If you add on JP’s stolen bases as if they were xtra base hits, JP would actually have the higher OPS. Ethier would have more RBI’s and SO’s over the course of the season, and JP would probably have more runs and fewer GIDP’s with his better speed/SB’s. But if you look at their #’s with RISP, Ethier’s #’s are much better. So, if you’re going to bat someone 1st or 2nd in the batting order, not such a clear choice, maybe go with JP because of his dependability, he’s going to give you 162 games a year, but if they would be batting further down the order and probably see more RISP, you go with Ethier for sure. It sort of depends on what you want to do with them.

Last point, and this has to do with the “gamer” quote you often hear about JP. Ethier’s highest OPS in situational hitting is when there is a 4 run or greater difference in the score, his lowest is when the game is tied. JP’s OPS is HIGHEST in tie game situations, lowest with the 4 run differential.

Bottom 8: Dodgers Batting: Matt DeSalvo Pitching:
Ethier singles to left center

Repko singles to left, Ethier to second

John Lindsey flies out to center

LaRoche walks on a full count, bases loaded

Terry Tiffee walks on four pitches, Ethier scores, 2-2 Tie

Delwyn Young 4-6-3 Double Play on the first pitch

1 Run 2 Hits 2 LOB End of 8 2-2 Tie

1 **** run that inning?

I’m not being negative but here is another point to prove the case.

B8: Your up. The bases are loaded and there is 1 out in a tie game. The last batter was walked on four pitches. Why are you swinging at the 1st pitch???

I know DY is competing for a job and trying to do alot but he needs to realize that doing alot and proving yourself is taking that 1st pitch!

Well, we are getting a good idea about what we need to work on.

This game is looking a lot like any game from last year…great pitching and an offense with a lot of hits and nearly as many LOB’s

I’ll bet the Dodgers led the majors in LOB’s last year. We stranded a bunch.

Top 9: Braves Batting: Brian Shackelford Pitching:
Josh Anderson reaches on a fielding error by Lindsey

Brayan Pena pops to LaRoche

Tyler Flowers homers to deep left field, Anderson scores, 4-2 Braves

Prado flies to Repko in center

Lillibridge pops foul to Lindsey

2 Runs (1 unearned) 1 Hit 0 LOB End of 8 1/2 4-2 Braves

This isn’t new guys. The Ds for years and years have left runners in scoring position with less than two outs. I’ve always told people to pitch a shutout against the D’s, all you have to do is start by walking the bases loaded every inning – they’ll find a way not to score.

What they need is someone to kick them in the *** and get them to learn situational hitting and going deeper into the count. I’m hoping Easler’s the one to do it.

Fortunately, I don’t think Torre’s going to watch it go on day after day either.

Can you say AAA to Mr Shack!

And Mr. Lindsey.

Hu’s on first.

lay it down Paul!

Alright Andre…you can do it.

Ethier up with 1 out and runners at 2nd and 3rd. C’mon Andre.

I’d love to see Andre drop a bomb on these guys.

Ethier walks.

Bases juiced, 1 out.

We need a walk off extra base hit.

Repko hit by pitch. 4-3 Atlanta.

Linsey, single, two runs in. We win 5-4.

YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!

I guess Linsey atoned for the error.

Bottom 9: Dodgers Batting: DeSalvo Pitching:
Hu walks on four pitches

John-Ford Griffin walks on a full count, Hu to second

Xavier Paul sacrifices to the pitcher, Hu to third, Griffin to second

Ethier walks on four pitches, bases loaded

(Pitching Change Colter Bean for Matt DeSalvo)

Repko hit by the pitch, Hu scores, bases still loaded, 4-3 Braves

John Lindsey doubles down the left field line, Griffin and Ethier score, Dodgers win 5-4

3 Runs 1 Hit

Braves

4 5 0

Dodgers

5 13 1

WP: Brian Shackelford

LP: Matt DeSalvo

Time of Game: 2:43

Thanks alex! Great job!!!

Dodgers: 13 hits, 8 walks, 1 hit by pitch. If we had not won it would have been pathetic.

Nice play by play. Epic ending! GO BLUE!

So a 4A scrub wins it for us. No thanks to Pierre, of course.

Great job Alex. Thanks a million.

Tomorrow’s game is on ESPN, Saturday’s game is on MLB.TV (w/subscription), I’ll be back Sunday morning for more play by play.

GO DODGERS!

Pierre, 0 for 3, 2 LOB. Hope we see lots more of this. Torre will have no choice but to bench his sorry butt.

LaRoche had a fantastic game. Maybe that idiot Ken Gurnick will finally acknowledge it.

Ethier; 1 for 2 with a walk and 2 runs scored.

Thanks so much, Alex! I’ve been pretending to work but checking in every few minutes for your posts.

finally I am able to post! I kept getting this message from mlb saying “We are currently performing maintenance operations…

Can I join the fantasy baseball some of you were talking about here? I have been playing for the last two years in a ladies league which I will join again this year. Last year we did have a couple of token boys in there :-)

DCollins: A friend of mine that moved to Vero in part because the Dodgers were there sent me a list of restaurants Don’t have it handy but I’ll share with you either here or I’ll send it via email.

A week from Saturday I will be in Vero Beach! I got my ticket for Jupiter on Saturday and the next day at Vero Beach!

Pierre,
You said you do not have access to dodgersondemand, but at least you can check out the videos on cbs/kcal. If you have not view them, you can find them at the botton of here http://www.dailynews.com/dodgers -Emma

Hi Josh,

Can you clarify the Opening Day Ticket situation? I signed up for the online raffle and it appeared that would be the only way to obtain opening day tickets. However, I have read reports saying that at this Saturday’s single game ticket sale at Dodger stadium opening day tickets would also be available. Is this true?

Ned –

How do you deal with so many non-roster players ? Are they really expecting to make the team or do they hope to get noticed by another team ? If another team is interested, do you trade them or release them or something else ? I feel for a pitcher like Jason Johnson who does well, but has little chance of making the team. There seems to be a lot of talent in this pool this year.

Ned –

A second question is if you could change anything about today’s typical player contract or baseball rules, what would you do ? To me it seems that managers might have to make a decision based on a contract or rules rather than what is best for team. For example, a team might choose to keep a player who is “out of options” instead of someone else.

It’s a ST game people. Personally, I wouldn’t read too much into the lineup and certainly not into the Dodgers’ performance with runners on base when the likes of Linsdey and Tiffee are in the game.

Larry Bowa’s suspect 3B coaching, however…. :)

From Jon Heyman at Sports Illustrated dot com:

The potential for more dissension still exists, with Kent opting to return for another season and Garciaparra coming back as a backup after a season in which he appeared to lose it. On my day in Dodgers camp, there still didn’t seem to be much socializing between the very old and very young. Kent, who has a long of history of not playing well with others and made the opposite claim of a lack of respect when he was a young player with a veteran Mets team, wore a dour face at a corner locker all day, far away from the others.

What’s worse, while the surly Kent may not talk much to his teammates, everyone around the team knows he is a main adviser to Jamie McCourt, wife of team owner Frank McCourt, an unhealthy alliance that can’t be positive for the team. The absurd idea of dumping the multitalented Kemp hit the L.A. papers early this winter, and it’s natural to conclude an idea that foolish could only have come from the same person who questioned Kemp’s “professionalism.”

Kent is a piece of work. Thank god we will be rid of him after this year.

Someone speculated on outs (AB-H+CS+GIDP) leaders. For the NL:

1. Jimmy Rollins 521

2. Jose Reyes 517

3. Ryan Zimmerman 506

4. Juan Pierre 497

5. Brandon Phillips 497

Of course, that’s a counting stat. Among batting title qualifiers, these are the fastest outmakers:

Player Outs Outs/PA

1 Pedro Feliz 433 .734

2 Ray Durham 383 .725

3 Bengie Molina 373 .721

4 Chris Young 445 .713

5 Craig Biggio 395 .712

6 Khalil Greene 468 .710

7 Brandon Phillips 497 .708

7 Felipe Lopez 475 .708

7 Omar Vizquel 407 .708

10 Brian McCann 388 .703

10 Andruw Jones 463 .703

12 Ryan Zimmerman 506 .701

13 Bill Hall 351 .698

14 J.J. Hardy 444 .696

15 Rafael Furcal 441 .687

15 Ryan Theriot 410 .687

15 Mike Cameron 447 .687

18 Alfonso Soriano 421 .682

19 Juan Pierre 497 .682

20 Adam LaRoche 429 .679

So Furcal actually made outs slightly faster than JP.

Ethier (did you know had enough PA to qualify?) was 41st (of 75) at .661

Jeff Kent is a stud baseball player with Hall of Fame credentials as a 2B. Today I happened to put on that weird ESPN2 morning show and there is Derek Lowe. The questions were mostly inane, but one thing Lowe claimed was that “chemistry” is hugely important to a team. (Most of Reggie Jackson’s championship teams beg to differ.) What kind of chemistry does Jeff Kent bring to the clubhouse? Now, I don’t really know, never having set foot in one, but this is what’s on the record.

Jeff Kent called out Milton Bradley – clearly the most volatile and anger-management challenged personality on the team – in the clubhouse in front of the entire team. Baiting the known hothead would seem to incite interesting team chemistry reactions.

Jeff Kent complained to the press, in no uncertain way, about the way the young players conducted themselves. Introducing the press and the public into what should be internal team issues is quite the catalyst for team chemistry, for explosions.

Jeff Kent said a week or so ago, “You don’t win and anybody that’s not frustrated, they shouldn’t be playing the game” and “They [the fans] want to win. Give them anything shy of that and they’ll be ticked off. And the team’s players should be as well.” In other words, he thinks all players should react to losing the same way he does. Baseball can be a grind. Great teams lose 62 games a year. 75% of the NL teams DON’T make the postseason. Losing is something a player has to learn to deal with. I seriously doubt that all 750 major-leaguers (or all top-tier players) deal with losing in the same way. Jeff Kent doesn’t understand much about the human condition if he gets frustrated that not everyone is like him. In which case, he should just shut up, go about his business, read his motorcycle magazines and leave the human interaction to the coaching staff and the personable veterans.

That rant said, I was stunned that he participated as Simon in the Dodgers Idol thing, although Jeff Kent and S. Cowell (pronounce that ‘scowl’) do seem to go together.

Thank you old fogey – that was me that asked about out making machines.

Well, Ethier looked good today and Phewerre stunk. I’m loving it.

I’m a long time Dodger fan finally going Vero Beach for spring training. I am going the game on Sunday March 16th. I know the team will be in China the 14th and 15th. Do you know who will be playing in the split squad game on 3//16.

Marlins on March 16.

You are going to have a great time Goodloes. Go early and stay late.

enchantedsunset – you’re welcome.

I just noticed that #s 1,2,3 and 7 played for the Giants, and three still do. The first three set themselves apart from the pack.

Josh is too modest to toot his own horn. From now on, we should address him as “Mr. Vice President”. This is what Tony Jackson wrote in a Daily News article:

Josh Rawitch, a longtime member of the Dodgers public-relations staff and the team’s PR director for the past 2 1/2 years, has been promoted to vice president for public relations and broadcasting, a role he will assume immediately.

“As a lifelong Dodgers fan, it is an honor to be entrusted with this position,” Rawitch said. “I am grateful to (owners) Frank and Jamie McCourt for having confidence in me that I can handle the responsibilities of this position.”

Thanks jhall. We are heading to Disney after the game Sunday. I am thinking about coming back Monday solo. Do you think any of the starters will be back from China on Sun?

How did 2007 NL teams perform with runners in scoring position?

Team Avg. OBP Slg% OPS OPS+ (100 is NL average, ballpark adjusted)

ATL .291 .379 .468 .847 117

MIL .261 .352 .454 .806 106

NYM .277 .362 .438 .800 105

PHI .259 .362 .435 .797 104

SDP .271 .356 .436 .792 103

COL .276 .373 .414 .787 102

HOU .267 .359 .424 .783 101

CIN .263 .355 .422 .777 99

CHC .278 .357 .418 .775 99

FLA .268 .349 .422 .771 98

SFG .264 .358 .406 .764 96

STL .274 .353 .411 .764 96

WAS .261 .349 .409 .758 94

PIT .272 .347 .411 .758 94

LAD .278 .359 .395 .754 94

ARZ .249 .344 .403 .747 92

The Dodgers’ OBP is middle of the pack (the middle eight teams span only .007), but that low slugging percentage means they must have been singlestastic when they did get hits.

goodloes – the China contingent doesn’t return to Florida; they go straight to Arizona, where the rest of the team will join them.

Thanks old fogey.

I had a busy day and half of it spent reading about my favorite team, here. ***Well that game confirmed it, this was not John Lindsey who once was the mayor of New York. ***Bowa is saying his head is hard enough he don’t need a helmet.***Noma & LaRoche each got a hit, Tie score and Andy walked AGAIN ***Ethier beat out Pierre 2-1.***Kemp looks like the Afro-American Babe Herman, but don’t give up on his baserunning. Speaking about baserunning I read that Hu was thrown out at second trying to steal with runners on first & second. Hu’s on first__stay there. That was a typo, right? ***Since the Dodgers & Angels paid no mind to Green he decided to quit. Good luck Shawn. ***It’s nice to here Will’s Pitt is being transfered to Glendale. I wish it was Glendale, Brooklyn. In saying “good bye” to Vero Beach & Dodgertown, I think they forgot “Dem Bums”. ***Furcal, to me is the best news.

joe pierre: it was a typo, it was first and third.

Shawn Green = class act.

Jon Weisman wrote this interesting, dead-on comment in his Dodger Thoughts blog:
*********************************

In my mind, Ned’s solution to the four-outfielder problem was hiring Joe Torre. We know Ned likes depth. It’s doubtful that in the event of injury, Ned wants Young or Repko or John-Ford Griffin playing regularly.

This shouldn’t be rocket science. It is natural for the player who gets No. 4 outfield status to brood. It’s also natural for the manager of the team to kick that brooder in the butt and tell him to think about the team and stay ready. If Torre can’t tell a fourth outfielder in April to stay positive, then what the heck is Torre here for?

I know some people will think I’m being naïve, but I think I’m the opposite. People who want to be stars are forced into backseat roles all the time. You don’t give up depth because depth is in a bad mood.

If the Dodgers can make a good trade, then good. But I firmly don’t believe that a trade of one of the four outfielders is necessary.

There’s only an outfield “problem” if the Dodgers choose to allow it. I don’t care if they need to talk to Ethier (or whomever) every day. Bring in a therapist if you need to. Manage the problem.

Interesting from Tony Jackson:

General manager Ned Colletti briefed Torre and the new coaching staff on several issues over the winter, and the Dodgers’ baserunning savvy, or lack thereof, was prominent in those discussions.

“There were areas we knew coming in we would have to work on,” Bowa said. “We weren’t blindsided by this.”

First, totally agree, Green is a class act, and I hate that people booed him since he left. Second, I agree, I can’t wait till Kent is gone. Hope I don’t offend anyone but its true. I don’t think our clubhouse problems are totally gone, although a new manager probably helps. Finally, another year of rotating four outfielders and giving the most PA’s to the worst of them does not help the team.

CZBLUE-EMMA::Did you change your name? +++I get MLB-TV and also can get Sports on Demand’s Extra inning on T.V. but as you might know they don’t show the PRE & POST GAME shows. That’s what I’d really like to see. Apparently Dodgers on Demand does not reach the East Coast. I remember inquiring about Dodger Vision years ago, but got the same result.

does anyone know why the numbers on the front of our jerseys are red? is there like a specific meaning…or is it just to ruin the jersey??

pierre,
No, I did not change my name :-) is just that I had forgotten the password on the other signon.

jspelk, I do like Kent. i like how he plays the game. To me eventhough he was a Giant, he became a Dodger to me when he cried at his first press conference at Dodger Stadium. I hope that this year he will continue hosting the Women baseball clinic at the stadium and that he invites some of the kids like Loney or Kemp to participate. I hope all three will have a great year. I hope the whole team will have a great year. -Emma

joey_rock: I don’t know why the front number is red, but I do know they were introduced by the 1952 Brooklyn Dodgers and that they were the first team to include the number on the front. Brooklyn took the NL pennant in ’52, so many it was initial considered good luck and kept (although the lost the WS to, who else, the Yankees, in seven games).

So you’ve had 56 seasons to get used to it, why do you think it ruins the jersey?

emma – it’s late, go to bed!

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