Happy Opening Day

It’s been quite a spring, with stops in Florida, China, Arizona and a record-setting crowd at the Coliseum. I haven’t even had the chance to post anything about the Coliseum game, but I do hope that you all got the chance to either attend the game or watch on TV, as it was something I’ll remember for the rest of my life. I’m sure all of you have lasting memories from the game and strangely, other than walking out around midnight and looking up at the empty stadium, I don’t have a moment that stands out for me from the day, as it was special from start to finish.

What does jump out at me, though, is just how hard the entire front office has worked to bring these events to the fans. There are clearly hiccups along the way, as in any business, but I’ve witnessed people working practically around the clock in the offices and I can assure you it’s becauase of their love for the Dodgers. It’s actually really cool to see.

As for Opening Day, for any of you coming down, please try to carpool and come early. As everyone knows, there’s only so much space and on a weekday, it seems all 56,000 people bring their own cars. We’ve added 1,000 parking spots this year, which will help, but we ask for your patience and understanding getting into and out of the ballpark. Anytime you put close to 20,000 cars onto the Freeway after the game right into rush hour traffic, it’s going to be tough to keep traffic flowing but we’ve got hundreds of people working to ensure as smooth an experience as possible.

As for the pregame ceremonies, they are going to be something else, so you’ll want to see them. Like all else this year, they’re geared towards the 50th anniversary celebration.

I haven’t had the chance to give Ned all the questions you’ve asked, but his answers should be coming soon. I know a lot of you have asked about Juan Pierre/Andre Ethier and obviously you saw the conclusion that Ned, Joe and the rest of the baseball staff came to, with Andre starting the year as the left fielder. I hope that at least shows everyone that the people making decisions here don’t do so in a vacuum. They take everything into consideration and are always going to do what they think is going to help us win.

Here’s the lineup for today…

Furcal, SS
Ethier, LF
Kemp, RF
Kent, 2B
Jones, CF
Martin, C
Loney, 1B
Penny, P

Not sure when that TBA will be filled in, but for now, that’s what we’ve got.


  1. messagebear

    I’m still rooting for DeWitt. I hope he can do something with the opportunity and maybe even stick with the club beyond the opening game or whatever. I think he has the tools and just may surprise us. I also think that Torre may recognize this while Ned is obviously skeptical. I’m sure Ned would have preferred keeping Martinez on third.

  2. heartruss

    I’m sure this will be a season to remember. Thanks Josh and all the Dodgers staff for the great Coliseum Game. It was truly memorable. I know today Opening Day also will be awesome. All of us Dodger fans are supportive of Joe Torre and the team and know that we are number one. All I can say is….GO DODGERS!!!

  3. redfox@q.com

    Thanks, Josh, for all the info you provide. I hope that TBA doesn’t mean another panic move by Ned. There is absolutely nothing wrong with using DeWitt at 3B until Nomar or LaRoche are back. We don’t need another veteran logjam like Ned seems to enjoy providing! Here’s hoping that DeWitt is in the starting lineup and that we get off to a fast start in the NL West today.

  4. eslabels

    I agree fox – no need to panic. We have enough offense to carry DeWitt so that he need only marginally hit as long as he can field the position. Kinda surprised with Kent back that we’re not seeing Hu at third though. Only real issue with DeWitt as far as I can see is that his making the team starts his clock.

    On the otherhand, if Ned can move JP for a 3B, I think all parties will be better off. DeWitt can get more experience in AA. the D’s get an interim 3B, JPs happier on another team and doesn’t become a distraction, and we say goodbye to Angel Chavez.

    Also, let’s hope Zito’s 10+ ERA from ST continues today at the Ravine!!!

  5. scott_in_arcadia

    Thanks Josh.

    Well, congratulations to Andre Ethier as he deserves it, and thank you to Joe for making the right move.

    I really like what I’ve seen from DeWhit,so I hope there’s no stop gap veteran coming at 3B unless it comes with Pierre being traded – that way this Game 1 lineup can stay intact.

  6. charris1010321@yahoo.com

    Alright!!! Most of us got our wish with Ethier, congrats Andre and here’s to a successful ’08 for the boys in blue. I’d like to see Loney hitting higher in the lineup but I won’t complain because we have all the starters that we could have hoped for in the lineup opening day. I was really encouraged by Kuroda’s last outing in spring and think he’ll end up being a big asset to our club. We are kind of getting shuned by preseason predictions but I like that, I think this team will make some people eat their words by September.

  7. troyinwv@yahoo.com

    “I’m sure Ned would have preferred keeping Martinez on third.”

    Let me get this straight. Not only was Colletti unable to persuade Torre to start Martinez, he couldn’t even put him on the 25 man roster. And this is the GM we’re talking about.

    Are you stupid or something? Or do you just feel the need to ***** about a non-issue?

  8. dodgerboy55

    I would like to give a hats off to Joe Torre for making the proper decision. I had faith that he would make the right decision and Ethier went out and earned it. I am sure it is not an easy decision to bench the money, but it is the right decision. I am not sure the past regime would have done it.

    Anyway enough of that…What a GREAT Day…Lets rock the Gnats and open the season with great optimism!!! Dewitt, I hope he does not put too much pressure on himself, just enjoy the ride while it lasts and learn from this experience.

    This year I have more confidence in our abilities as a team than I have in several years…

    Off the topic, I got to go to the Nats home opener and the stadium is incredible…All of us guys here would kill to have that high def 50 ft tv in their house (where i do not know, but it is incredible)…it had a better pic than the 42 in plasma in the suite that I was in….it is huge and you find yourself just staring at it!

    Go Dodgers!!!!
    1st dodgers
    2nd Rockies
    3rd dbacks
    4th Padres…no offense
    5th GNats…

  9. stringtest@gmail.com

    – excited to get the season underway! go blue!
    – ethier!
    – if we’re keeping chavez as a utility IF, hu has shown more at the major league level to warrant the start at 3B over dewitt. further, the more we see of him in the field and at the plate, the more information we’ll have to decide if he will inherit SS from furcal.
    – aside from being a veteran, kent has shown NOTHING that he is ready for the season and to start it batting cleanup…

    but whatever! let’s go dodgers!

  10. stringtest@gmail.com

    – excited to get the season underway! go blue!
    – ethier!
    – if we’re keeping chavez as a utility IF, hu has shown more at the major league level to warrant the start at 3B over dewitt. further, the more we see of him in the field and at the plate, the more information we’ll have to decide if he will inherit SS from furcal.
    – aside from being a veteran, kent has shown NOTHING that he is ready for the season and to start it batting cleanup…

    but whatever! let’s go dodgers!

  11. charris1010321@yahoo.com

    jungar, I hope you are as excited as I am, we got the best 7 in the lineup (TBA???) and I still love our SP depth heading into the season. If Penny, Lowe, Billingsley and Kuroda can avoid major injuries, I really like our chances. LET’S PLAY BALL!!!

  12. jhallwally

    Good morning and happy opening day. GO DODGERS!!!!
    Hope DeWitt starts at 3rd until Nomar/LaRoche get back. Might as well see what the kid can do. If he flops badly, put Hu in to get us to LaRoche/Nomar. Certainly we don’t need to panic and take on some other teams useless baggage and clog up 3rd. Unless, of course, the price is Pierre.

  13. jhallwally

    Good morning and happy opening day. GO DODGERS!!!!
    Hope DeWitt starts at 3rd until Nomar/LaRoche get back. Might as well see what the kid can do. If he flops badly, put Hu in to get us to LaRoche/Nomar. Certainly we don’t need to panic and take on some other teams useless baggage and clog up 3rd. Unless, of course, the price is Pierre.

  14. jhallwally

    Good morning and happy opening day. GO DODGERS!!!!
    Hope DeWitt starts at 3rd until Nomar/LaRoche get back. Might as well see what the kid can do. If he flops badly, put Hu in to get us to LaRoche/Nomar. Certainly we don’t need to panic and take on some other teams useless baggage and clog up 3rd. Unless, of course, the price is Pierre.

  15. shepherd96

    I like the order. Having Furc, Ethier, Kemp, and Kent hit in front of Jones means that there are 4 hitters with the potential of hitting .300+ in front of Jones. Plus, having Kemp and Kent in front and Martin and Loney behind makes Jones seem ordinary in the middle. He should get pitches to hit– a long way.

    Let’s not forget that DeWitt hit 3 HR in ST, too. I wouldn’t expect a high average from him, but occaisional power is possible.

    So, Jungar and the rest of you guys have your wish, hitters from 2 to 8 that can hit it out. Plus Raffy can put a charge into about 10 to 15 per year, when he is healthy. This year, we could see as many HRs as in 1977!

  16. scott93063

    I don’t understand keeping Chavez and Troncoso ? Wouldn’t Park and Repko make more sense ?? Young is essentially an infielder.

    Josh – I hope you do post about the game at the Coliseum. The fans were terrible. I can’t believe these numbskulls who think it’s OK to steal the flags !!! Or the idoits who yell at the security and police for doing their jobs. I think you’ll get lots of feedback.

  17. vl4ecc

    I’m happy to see Ethier in the starting lineup, and J. Pierre riding the pine! I have a good feeling the boys in blue will have a phenominal year with the pitching staff. My main worry at this time is 3rd base. With Nomar, Abreu, and Laroche all hurting, I hope Dewitt can do well filling in.

  18. scott_in_arcadia

    Am I missing something with this Angel Chavez guy? How in the world does he make the 25?

    Infield insurance? I hate to admit it, but I’d rather have crappy ol’ Ramon Martinez.

  19. jhallwally

    Is Ramon in the minors or did we outright him and give him his release. Don’t know much or anything about this Chaves. I think he was in the Yankees minor league system at one time. Maybe Joe knows something we don’t.

  20. shepherd96

    From yesterday’s Gurnick article, “Roster could get Quick Facelift”: “Before Sunday’s game, Colletti placed Garciaparra, LaRoche and pitcher Jason Schmidt on the 15-day disabled list. Abreu is likely to join them on Monday. Reassigned to Minor League camp were non-roster pitchers Chan Ho Park, Brian Falkenborg, Mike Koplove, Clayton Kershaw and Greg Jones; catchers Rene Rivera and Danny Ardoin and infielder Ramon Martinez.”

  21. vl4ecc

    I’m sitting here watching thr Cubs-Brewers game at Wrigley on the tube till the Dodger game starts. The fans in the stands are braving the elements – cold, wet, rainy, & soggy. Makes me cold just to watch! Brrrrrrrrr!

  22. oldbrooklynfan

    This is my first opening day on the internet as I didn’t come up unti 4/30/07 last season.
    All the things I’ve learn over the off season will make this season all the more exciting for me.

  23. oldbrooklynfan

    Watching the game from the Coliseum brought back a lot of memories. Especially Roy Campanella night and the 1959 World Series.
    It was somehow bittersweet as much of this 50th Anniversary will be to me as one of the many who was deserted by the team in 1957.
    As always I will enjoy watching the games from way out here in Brooklyn, with hopes of someday making it out there.

  24. oldbrooklynfan

    No Mosaic but luckily the game hasn’t started yet and I’m up on the regular MLB-TV, which is good enough for me.

  25. dodger 32

    Finally Management makes the right decisions. Looking at Tomko over Bills, and Pierre over Eithier ,add in Roberto Hernandez, and Nomar over Loney last year ,it’s hard to believe management had winning as it’s top priority. It looks like Torre has made a difference in a good way , hopefully it continues. Alright lets PLAY BALL and on to a successful 08 season.

  26. lny4loney

    I’m very happy with the Opening Day lineup. Although I would move some of the pieces around, all the right pieces are in place.

    I am especially pleased to see Matt Kemp in the 3-hole! I’m looking for a real breakout season from him. Maybe .310 AVG, .370 OBP, 30+ HR, 40 2B/3B, 100 RBI, 100 RUNS, 25 SB.

  27. northstateblues

    Looks like we’re off to a good start today, and Kent looks like he’s feeling better. As for Zito, looks like the Giants are choosing to play their big money man regardless of his recent performance, instead of starting someone like Lincecum who pitched better last year. Of course, I won’t complain.

  28. dodge1612

    way to go penny to get out of that inning. lets go dodgers… lets put some more up… my giants fans freinds are not liking zito right now… I love him personally as of right now.

  29. leekfink

    The Coliseum experience was GREAT. My uncle (amongst others) went with me. He was at the first game in 1958, and now the last game at the Coliseum. It was a great once-in-a-lifetime thing. But I am glad we play every day at the greatest baseball stadium in history–Dodger Stadium. Hope to get out there for the opening series, and a lot of games this year.

    Great Opening Day so far–Furcal, Kemp, and Kent get it going big-time. This is going to be a GREAT YEAR!

    I have to say–congratulations to Andre Ethier–as well as Joe Torre, Ned Colletti, and the organization for making the right decision. And really, I am not sure of the ideal line-up (this way or some other combination), but this is the right personnel. And it’s a fruition of a wise off-season.

    Hopefully, Pierre will either accept his position and be a great supersub and help the team to a championship; or (less likely) he can, turn it up and earn a starting spot (and, if he really did earn his play up to be better than Andre, no one here would complain). Pierre could be a great supersub and be a part of a championship team. It’s understandable that he’s disappointed, but I hope he moves on quickly. We may be paying him a lot, but that’s not his fault, nor is it a reason to either start him or trade him.

    Congratulations also to Blake DeWitt. I saw him rip a homerun off of Papelbon Saturday, and thought he just made the Opening Day Roster. Who knows–maybe he turns out better than Nomar AND LaRoche. If not, hoepfully we get those guys back soon. (BTW–I am watching on the radio and Vinny just said that DeWitt is wearing number 33, whch is good, because he was wearing number 62 on Saturday, and that’s just too high for the Opening Day starting third baseman.).

    And he just got his first big league hit.

    This is going to be a GREAT season!

  30. northstateblues

    Ned, please don’t make any rash decisions regarding 3B. DeWitt almost ripped another one right now. Guys like this don’t fall off trees.

  31. northstateblues

    THese Giants chuckeheads that are announcing the game just had this to offer: “Ethier was announced as the starting LFer on Opening Day, and Pierre was not happy. Of course, if you go by the ovation when the players were announced, Pierre got more applause than Ethier, so the fans blah blah blah…”

    No offense to the guy, but with Ethier in left, the Giants are scoreless. WIth Pierre’s arm, they’dve probably got a run during that fielder’s choice in the top of the 2nd.

  32. oldbrooklynfan

    The good start continues and a congrats to DeWitt. It’s great to see Ethier starting. He really earned it.

  33. dodge1612

    its not that the fans were cheering for pierre its they were cheering that he wasnt starting… thats the reason for cheers

  34. northstateblues

    I believe it, dodge16. These are the same two that, during a Giants game at the Stadium, when Barry was up and the crowd was chanting “Barry S#%*s”, they said “Wow, they even love him in L.A., you can hear them chanting ‘Barry Bonds! Barry Bonds!'”. I miss Vin right now, heh.

  35. dodge1612

    those guys are idiots… I have mlb.tv now that im in minnesota… we get vin on here… I had it last season when I lived in nor-cal, when the games werent on mlb.tv and I had to listen to those idiots, I would put my tv on mute and listen to vin on mlb radio, it was about a 5 second difference but way better than listening to those two idiots. lets get em again more runs this inning…

  36. leekfink

    Well, in honor of Loney’s first hit, we should all sing (to the tune of Oscar Meyer’s Baloney):

    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!

  37. jhallwally

    Yep, I’ve got the game muted and Vin on the computer. The delay is annoying but hearing Vinny over those guys is priceless..

  38. northstateblues

    Dodge16, I usually do that, but Gameday isn’t working for me today (probably due to Opening Day demand and they’re still working out the kinds with updating MLB.com). My favorite is getting a 5-35 second warning when Charley Steiner’s going to scream how good a Dodger play was. I’ve spilled a few drinks to that, heh.

    It’s opening day, though, so I’m just gonna grin and bear with these guys.

  39. oldbrooklynfan

    If you say that Furcal is the best shortstop the Dodgers ever had, I wouldn’t argue with you and I’ve been around since Reese.

  40. oldbrooklynfan

    Garvey was on Espn a while back. I think Snider followed but I was busy on my computer. After checking the scores I couldn’t get back on the Blog. I had to take down the scores and go back up and I missed Snider. Other than that it’s been Scully for me.

  41. scott_in_arcadia

    Listen, here, Pierre: You stay right where you are on the bench. Just because Andre is 0-4 doesn’t mean you need to be getting your favorite bat ready.

  42. charris1010321@yahoo.com

    With the lineup set the way it is, I like our chances to score every inning, their are no cheap out 1-8 (well I guess the jury is still out on DeWitt). Seriously though, this is a pretty deep offense, Ethier and Martin are 0-7 and it doesn’t even matter because the rest of the guys are swingin’ it.

  43. leekfink

    Great Opening Day outing for Penny.

    One of the things DodgerThoughts pointed out recently was that in all the hubub over Left Field, Third base, the Fourth and Fifth Starter, Clayton Kershaw, etc., Brad Penny was overlooked because it was just assumed that he would be awesome.

    And he sure was today.

  44. jhallwally

    Gagne came on in the 9th for the Brewers with a 3-0 lead and proceeded to give up 3 runs and blow the save. 3 run homer.

  45. oldbrooklynfan

    Joe made a nice pickoff, even though he looked like he turned his head towards home. Ah but it’s beautiful especially when it’s your team on the field.

  46. kahliforni@aol.com

    A tidy little affair. Let’s have 161 just like it. I, too, want to thank Joe for ending Pierre’s streak. If you’re not starting, then why taint records with pinch running, etc., though I was surprised he didn’t toss Pierre the “pinch-at-bat bone” that he gave to Young. Maybe now Joe can manage like he wants to. We’ll see if a certain player has anything to say in the wake of a beautiful 5-0 TEAM win.

  47. oldbrooklynfan

    5-0 And as Vin said 50 for 50 years. But most important we are 1-0. Great win for Penny. Let’s go Derek.

  48. oldbrooklynfan

    That’s right Scott we broke the streak. I consider that very important.
    Now every outfielder on this team is on a level playing field.

  49. dodger 32

    Now that JPs streak is over he can become the best pinch runner in the game, as that’s what he’s best suited for. That’s the way to get off to a good start. Lets win tomorrow also. When Furcal is healthy he’s one of the best lead off hitters in the game.

  50. jhallwally

    I am getting the feeling that Joe is here to rub it in the Yankee’s faces and will do what he feels will win. I like it.

  51. dodgereric

    I thought a lot about you, PierreEMW, during that game on Saturday. I’m sure you watched that with a melancholy heart.

  52. jhallwally

    PierreEW, tell us stories about going to games at Ebbets field. Those were the golden years of baseball.

  53. junkyardjamie

    Nice game today Dodgers! It’s great to be a Dodger fan up hear in NorCal, especially when the Giants are the ones you beat.

  54. northstateblues

    I hear that, dnelson. I was going to wear my Jackie Robinson jersey tomorrow to class, win or lose, but after that win, it’s gonna be a lot sweeter. I’ll probably get a lot of dirty looks, and some hi-fives from other Dodgers fans, but out of the two, I prefer the dirty looks, heh.
    Glad I didn’t live here during the mid-to-late 90’s, that would’ve been hell.

  55. messagebear

    Today was a terrific start to the new season all around. It is very encouraging to see Raffy swing the bat and to see him in his lead-off position. Penny – you almost expect that over the first half of the season. I was also very pleased with DeWitt – as I’ve said here a number of times, he’s my man. I think he will hit enough to maintain the position at least until either Nomar or LaRoche come back. I’m rooting for DeWitt to beat the odds and keep playing even when the other two become available. I like his patience with getting the walks and his contact hitting. Some guys just know how to make a career out of being given one chance.

  56. junkyardjamie

    Yes, there are a lot more Dodger fans up here now, and you can find merchandise easier nowadays. However, I happen to live with Giant fans so my days are never easy being a Dodger fan so it makes days like today very sweet.

  57. vl4ecc

    Great team. Great crowd. Great overall effort, and a great start to a brand new season. I’m hoping they sweep the boys from the *** bay!

  58. eslabels

    Solid TEAM game today. That was the first I’ve gotten a look at the boys on TV – was hoping the Tigers didn’t score that run and go another few innings!

    I was impressed by DeWitt – nice start to that DP, a hit and a pair of walks. Can’t expect anymore than that from the kid. I wasn’t particularly impressed by Penny, yet he kept getting outs. Even Biemel pitched OK.

    Can’t wait to see this team start hitting in sync. Let’s hope Lowe gives it a good effort tomorrow – I enjoy kicking the Jints when they’re down.

  59. northstateblues

    Did anyone else notice that, although the Yanks rained out, Torre and the Dodgers didn’t seem to have a cloud in the sky? Yeah, a sunny day in LA isn’t exactly noteworthy, but a lot has been made in the media about how, during his introductory press confrence, when Torre came out, the rain stopped and the sun came out. There was a couple of times that happened in Dodgertown, too. Haven’t felt this good about the team in a while.

    Oh, and my name used to come up as my old e-mail address (drinkinmercury79@aol.com), but now it posts as the name of my new blog, North State Blues. I like that having a blog here is free now, still getting the hang of it, though. Just writing about how fun it is to be a Dodgers fan up here in NorCal (or a Lakers fan, at that). It’s at http://northstateblues.mlblogs.com .

  60. rintinjim310@yahoo.com

    I was at the game today. What a difference a year makes. Proctor relieved Penny, got the final out and then started off the next inning (with a five-run lead) walking the number eight hitter on four pitches. Torre comes to the mound. Goodbye Scott. Beimel retired the next three batters to end the inning. Grady would have left Proctor in the game and used Beimel, it at all, for one batter at most. I’m sure a Proctor got the message.
    Joe also didn’t use Broxton. Grady used the rookie pitcher in over 80 games last year. No wonder he ran out of steam in September.

  61. ndeschenes@securenet.net

    Fantastic 5 to 0 score for our Los Angeles Dodgers over the San Francisco Giants! What a Super Way to start off the 2008 season and for manager Joe Torre. Superman Jeff Kent always comes through with his magnificent 2 run Homer to lead the way!I’ll say this again!All of us fans, Jeff, realize you are a True Los Angeles Dodger and a future Hall of Hall of Famer and we appreciate and admire you for this!Brad Penny, you are a champion pitcher!All the rest of you Los Angeles Dodgers were great as well. The amazing glory of The Los Angeles Dodgers is back!World Series Victory is our Destiny!

  62. crzblue2

    ndeschenes, nice positive post!

    I had a great time at the Coliseum! I got to D.S. at 11:a.m. so I hopped on the shuttle right away. Met this 87 y.o. lady that was on the shuttle. One of my friends could not make it so I had an extra ticket that I was trying to sell, but then the lady (Mary) told me she had forgotten her ticket. Well, I gave it to her. She had been at the Coliseum when it first opened. She was by herself and I with my brother. I later ran into her again and she got special treatment as she did not have to get in line for autographs and got Duke, Oisk, and others. Me, I stood in line for 3 hours only to be told “sorry, but the last ones that were signing had to go inside the Coliseum. Oh well. At least Mary got her autographs and she also showed me that a fan bought her the commemorative pin and another fan bought her the program. She told me also that she got interviewed by two different newspapers and that I had brought her luck. She was so appreciative. I was glad I was able to help. Just hope she made it home Ok. She had left her car at the D.S. but Mary seemed so resourceful that I am sure she did not have to wait in line for the shuttle.

    Felt bad about how some of the fans acted so immature with the taking of the flags, but I think extra security should have been in place.

    On my way home, I was thinking of all the work that had to be done in order to put the Coliseum event together and with Opening day coming up, I could only imagine all the extra work. Thank you Josh (I could see you running around), and thank you all that contribute to the Coliseum event and to a great Opening Day!

    Opening Day! What a day! the *Field of Dreams* scenes are something I will never forget just like the 50 year anniversary celebration of the 1955 W.S. when the remainder of our Boys of Summer of the era were in attendance. As I was watching Duke Snider come out of the centerfield wall walking very slow, and I was applauding, I could not help the tears coming down my face. What a day! and to top it off with Sandi Koufax in attendance!

    Did you all read this:
    “DeWitt’s unusually calm exterior finally cracked, but not until the final play when Takashi Saito threw out Ray Durham on a comebacker.

    “That’s when I started shaking,” said DeWitt. “I can’t explain it. Nothing bothered me before or during the game.””

    DeWitt, however, credited some of his cool to the advice of Kent, a teammate perceived by some as a troublemaker last year for sounding off about his frustration with the approach of some young players. But DeWitt said Kent made a difference for him Monday.

    “He came up to me and was great before the game, telling me to stay within myself and not try to do too much,” DeWitt said of Kent. “I think I was relaxed as much from that as anything.”

    On the game at the Coliseum, when I forget who got a single, Eithier threw the ball to first. I saw Kent signaled with his glove to Either pointing to 2nd base. Either nodded like yeah, I should have thrown to 2nd base. On today’s Opening game when Either threw to first base, Kent signaled to Either with his glove like saying “Good job, right base”. Either signaled back with his glove. Just little things that I noticed while at the game….

  63. crzblue2

    Josh or Ned:

    I just found out that Luchy Guerra is no longer with the team. I am going to miss her. Very nice lady. Everytime I used to see her I was always asking her about some of our minor leaguers. She was surprised that I kept track of what our minor leaguers were doing. Who replaced her?

    When I was in Vero Beach, I talked to a few of the kids from the Dominican Republic. They looked so young. I am thinking that with the move to Arizona that we will no longer see these kids and as many of the minor leaguers, right? If that is so, I will miss talking with them at Spring Training. -Emma

  64. eslabels

    After one game I think Torre washed away many of my fears that he’s a “company” man. Perhaps the greatest thing he did on opening day was not play JP at all. Nothing against JP, its just in one brilliant stroke Torre made “The Streak” a non issue forever. Surely I thought he’d PH Juan there in the 8th, but sending DY up there said without speaking that no one is more important than the team. He also made it so Juan can focus on baseball now rather than personal achievements, and perhaps even be able to help this team rather than divide it.

  65. puppyhead01@hotmail.com

    Oh ****, wait…Nats already played 2 games.

    Dodgers are tied for 2nd-best record in baseball – woohoo!

  66. messagebear

    I know it’s just the rumor mill, but I hope that Ned is not ready to make another panic move to sign up Miles for our third base position. I know he’s available without giving up any of our talent, but what for. I have no indication that he can perform any better than DeWitt, and we do have both Hu and Chavez available in case of another emergency at third. Hopefully Torre understands the situation and knows how to handle DeWitt for best results, and most improtantly I hope that it’s Torre who’s driving this train and not Ned. If Grady was still managing and in his lockstep with Ned, no doubt Giles would be with us and Martinez would still be on the team for that insurance. I’m so glad at least that management combination was broken up.

    I have never liked Colletti, and I expect I never will. When you look at all the veterans with the Giants, I just think that Ned should still be with them instead of on the Dodger team, because he seems on that same wave length. I expect that he’s been kept in check by the McCourts, and I hope that Torre is given the chance to call the shots for who’s playing this season for us. I’m willing to give Joe all the patience necessary, because he’s a baseball man. Ned is just a public relations guy in disguise. At this moment he’s got about as much money sitting on the bench through his ill-advised transactions as there is out on the playing field. Sad commentary, but maybe one that has McCourt taking some notice.

  67. ceorsmithrc@yahoo.com

    Messagebear — Don’t think for one moment that Ned isn’t the conductor of this train. If it derails, it will because of him and if it blows through the station (season) straight to the Series, it will be because of the moves he made. That i just the nature of the beast!
    It was that way when Campanis, Claire, Lasorda, Evans, DePodesta, Bavasi and any other GM was on the hot seat!
    Having the likes of Torre, Lasorda or Alston on the bench makes the tracks smoother to run on. It is the manager that takes the blame for winning and losing, but the GM takes the heat for the personnel!
    PULL THE TRIGGER!! All aboard for a champinship ride!

  68. dodgereric

    Normally Plaschke leaves me cold, but today’s column on the opening ceremonies was great. I wish I could have been there to see it.

    Josh – Any chance that you guys might put a video of it on the site so that we can all see it?

  69. samhong86@yahoo.com

    Congraulations JOe torre for making the dodgers a LEGITIMATE championship contender!!! i am tired of hearing people say that the dodgers will finish 4th this year and some even saying that they will iwn only 83?~?!! are you insane the dodgers dont have any holes on offense! from opening day they looked ploished and in mid season form.
    The Road to October 161 to go! lets analyze
    1. Furcal- drove the ball well and got a walk amazing grab up the middle
    2. Ethier- although he had an 0fer 2 of them were hundred percent outs the other 2 were solid contact outs 1 being a liner to left center if he pulled it a little more it couldve gone as a run scoring double and the other was a weak comebacker.
    3. kemp- good day in the field good day in the 3 hole, solid rbi up the middle, heads up play taking 2nd
    4. kent- SOLID SOLID SOLID SOLID SOLID all his career nough said for all you kent haters! after the homerun i liked the body language kemp and jones gave him, rubbing his helmet with high fives.
    5. Jones- nice single to continue the dodgers offense to be aggressive. defensively almost made every play look routine. ( ball was hit…jones was already idle in the spot it dropped) something pierre did not do all of last season.
    6. martin- Tremendous day at the plate catching two baserunners. as for his offense…SO and a DP little worried but he’ll bounce back
    7. loney- good solid defense. nice peice of batting…nice SB to continue to be agressive.
    8. Dewitt- From a 22 year old rook. incredible day!! snatching a a grounder to start a DP, getting a hit and a run with 2BB to set up penny for 2 Sacs
    1.Penny- the suualy first half stats…seems like penny is conserving his fastball and arm for the end of the season..his fastball rnaged from 91-93 (can get it up to 95-97)
    2.Proctor- solid innings eater
    3.Beimel- good PO and hold
    4.Saito- nice locations and his fastball seems adequate at 93 mph

    finally TORRE- this is the dodgers difference maker right here. lets see a few pointers torre did to turn the dodgers in the right direction.
    1. immdediately ran out to challenge the Ump on the close call on kemps inf single (it was called an out)! grady wouldve have sat his *** on the bench
    2. the most glorious decision starting ethier over Pierre
    3. removing penny frist to not wear down his arm and secondly to trust in the bullpen early
    4. removing proctor…not taking any chances on allowing another walk or a run
    5. bringing in saito to get his work he missed in ST on a perfect day leading 5-0..Grady wouldve have sent in BRoxton!

    All in all, the dodgers get an A+ defensively and offensively i give them a B+.

    as fort he 5th SP spot dont be worried you unkowledgble dodger fans! if loiaza doesnt get the job done which is about 3 starts, we can turn to park in the minors for about 2-3 starts , if that doesnt go well we can turn to kuo for 2-3 starts, and if thats not adequate enough by that time itll be aorund late may or june and we’ll know what shmidty is capable of, and if that doesnt workout thats when you bring in KERSHAW around july. so to sum it all up we actually have 5 starting pitchers that can potentially take the 5th spot. this is the advantage that the dodgers have this season! that advantge is the same for 3b…dewitt is solid and if he doesnt cut it…nomar will come back around may and alroche in late june july.

    Dodgers 2008 WS Champions

    Yes: 1

    No: 0

    vote for the true blue

  70. ucscslug

    Hey guys, lets settle down with all the WS talk. It was one game. As fans, yea, that should always be our ultimate goal for this team, but let’s see how we look in a couple months before we crown this team champs of anything. Heck, right now the Royals have as many wins as we do.

  71. jhallwally

    Plus, it was the G’nats and they are terrible. We got great pitching and played good defense. Offense was pretty good. All in all it was a well played game and a nice win. Lots to be positive about. I like the lineup now that Pierre is on the bench. We can make it real tough on the league if we can stay healthy.

  72. dwartik@comcast.net

    Random question for you all. I just got the 2008 MLB catalog in the mail and they have this 1988 Los Angeles Dodgers World Series Collector’s Edition DVD set with all 5 world series games and games 4 and 7 of the NLCS. I think it’s a great thing, but I wanted to make sure these were the NBC broadcasts – with Vinny and Joe Garagiola – and not something else. Because having Vin do those games was part of the magic.

    Anyone know?

  73. jungar@wsgcorp.com

    Yeah it was one game versus the worst team in the NL.

    I don`t think Coletti has much control anymore. It’s Joe’s world now. But I don’t really care to be negative either. I bitched for a year straight about 111 million dollars to Nomar, Schmidt and Pierre and now it appears none are factors..So I should be happy. And I am.

  74. jungar@wsgcorp.com

    And Joe has the team in the clubhouse etc. From what I read. And my mind is changing on Furcal. if the price is right…

  75. jhallwally

    Good thing is, it seems that Ned is/has learned from his mistakes. I have to give him credit for that. Now, Ned, don’t make me a laughing stock by trading for some has been/never was to play third. You’re doing good. Don’t mess with it.

  76. dodgereric

    I agree, DeWitt stays until he proves that he’s not ready. And I DON’T mean a couple or three O-fers. DeWitt and Hu should be able to hold the fort until LaRoche/Nomar get healthy, and who knows, maybe by that time DeWitt will have made himself un-benchable. After all, the kid was a #1 pick just a couple of years ago.

    Nomar, the Dodger’s Wally Pipp!

  77. jhallwally

    If DeWitt is playing well, I hope that they leave him in there when Nomar/LaRoche come back. As far as I am concerned, it is his position if he performs well. Bad break for LaRoche but he will be a good 3B somewhere. I am not saying this is what will happen, but DeWitt may be the real deal. Trouble is, if Nomar comes back soon, they will hand him the position. I hope DeWitt gets 3-4 weeks so we can have a better idea of his ability.

  78. dodgereric

    Yeah, I hate it when they send someone down just because he has options left. I think that some of these “baseball people” would send Cobb back to the minors.

  79. jhallwally

    Let’s just hope our starting pitching stays healthy and performs. We will go as far as they do. I think it is the key to our success.

  80. ucscslug

    I’m anxious to see the starting lineup for tonight’s game. Ethier’s gotta do his best to keep Pierre out of the lineup.

  81. dodgereric

    I’m pretty optimistic for our starters for the next several years. But they’re so darned brittle anymore.

    I’m of the opinion that this 100-pitch limit that’s used all the time these days has become a self-fulfilling prophesy. Sure they get tired after 100 pitches – that’s all they ever let them throw! Nolan Ryan (admittedly a freak of nature) threw 150 almost every game and wore down after only 26 years.

  82. ucscslug

    How far along is Jason Schmidt in his recovery? Does someone have any references or articles that might say how many pitches he’s throwing, how hard he’s throwing, or anything like that?

  83. jhallwally

    I think Ned will find a fit for Pierre somewhere. In May there should be some teams that need an outfielder and leadoff hitter(I am using those terms loosely) once they see what they’ve got or incur injuries.

  84. jhallwally

    Not much info on Schmidt except that he is progressing with no major setbacks. I am also curious as to his progress and velocity.

  85. dodgereric

    Brett Butler got a lot of love on this blog a few days ago when we were discussing who the best Dodger CFs were. I have a nephew on the Mobile BayBears in the Dbacks’ system and ran across an update on Brett: http://mobilebaybears.com/2007/archive.asp

    It looks like he’s doing well and back in baseball.

  86. messagebear

    I have to laugh at Tony Jackson’s post earlier today. He says that Ned made a deal with Giles, and Giles was on his way to Vegas to play a few games and then be brought up to take third base. Only somewhere on the road to Vegas Giles turned around and decided he didn’t want to play and went back home. Such things can only happen to Ned. In the meantime, being assured that he had Giles, Ned passed up two other potential third basemen who had been released, and they are no longer available. Ha Ha!!!
    I’m thrilled, because I think that DeWitt can give us more than some other “end of career” veteran. If the story is true, it just further points out that Old Stumble Ned can’t do anything. What a GM – Ha Ha!

  87. dodge1612

    did anyone read tony jackson’s blog… he said ned signed marcus giles, but on his way to Las Vegas from San Diego he decided he didnt want to play anymore and went home. thank you marcus for doing that… here is the link to the story


  88. eslabels

    Blake DeWitt – $ 390,000

    Nomar Garciaparra – $ 8,500,000

    Ned with egg on his face – priceless.

  89. jhallwally

    Good God, thankfully it didn’t happen. Geez. I just don’t get it. Give the kid a chance. If any of these guys were even close to being any good, they would not be getting released. You’ve got a 1st round draft pick, playing well. Go with it. If he stinks it up before LaRoche gets back, play Hu. Where has all this proven overage veteran stuff gotten you thus far. Nowhere. See what DeWitt has. Christ!!

  90. eslabels

    Why O’Why O’Why does Ned always want to go out and get some brokendown no more has-been (and in Giles one that couldn’t play 3B at that) rather than trust in the kids?

    When have any of the kids truely let him down? Not Martin, not Kemp, not Ethier, not Loney, and my guess is, not DeWitt either. Now look at the vets: Schmidt hmmmm, Bombko hmmmm, Nomar hmmmm.

    It seems Torre can probably manage whether you give him vets or youngsters. Cap’n Frank seems to be on board with the kids. We know where Logan White stands. Ned on the other hand just seems to be banging a different drum…

    and no one wants to come to his parade.

  91. jhallwally

    Yea, isn’t that great. Giles isn’t even a freaking 3rd baseman. Ned, your overthinking this whole thing. Before you do anything, post the proposal on a few of the blogs and see what the reaction is. They usually have a great handle on it and get it right. If you had done that from the beginning, we would not have Schmidt, Pierre, or Nomar. And we would be much better off.

  92. greenie17@gmail.com

    Did Josh explain why we have to click on fan forum followed by Dodger blogs instead of linking to the blog from the front of the website? Or, am I missing the link on the front of Dodgers.com?

  93. eslabels

    Finally figured out who Ned reminds me of – Chicken Little. “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!!”

    Ned, as long as DeWitt can field his position, anything you get with the bat from him is gravy. With Ethier in the everyday line-up, 1 thru 7 is your offense. And being young, DeWitt will bring a youthful enthusiasm (read that as wanting to play baseball for the love of it.) Says a lot to me about Giles when he’s on his way and turns around to go home.

    Note to Frank: Put tight leash on Ned this year so he doesn’t bite us in the butt.

  94. dodge1612

    greenie, its on the dodgers front page… its on the bottom of the page on the left hand side, if your looking at it from our view. Go dodgers…

  95. puppyhead01@hotmail.com

    We’ll see what happens with Pierre in the game tonight…my guess is that if he comes to bat in any close-and-late situations, Kemp will pinch hit for him and be a defensive replacement. The best thing is that Pierre is not batting high in the order (the article implied he’d be in the 7th/8th hole). If that’s the case, at least Torre is automatically smarter than Grittle for that only.

  96. puppyhead01@hotmail.com

    If Ned had posted, we’d still have Schmidt. Lots of Monday-morning QB’s on that one…in fact, I remember hardly a negative word about Schmidt until he was injured. Then it was “Oh, that was a bad signing” followed by “Oh, you could have seen the red flags for 10 years prior” followed by “Oh, Ned’s giving his old Giants’ buddy a retirement package” followed by “Any doctor in the world could have told you he was injured, Stan Conte is the worst trainer ever” followed by “They must not have even looked at the MRI of his shoulder and just signed him because they are evil greedy incompetent ******** blah blah blah.”…………………………………………………………………………………….
    I remember how widely that signing was praised in the sports media as one of the best signings of the off-season due to its short duration (comparable to the 7-year SP deals we’re seeing now).

  97. messagebear

    Have to agree with your recollection of the comments, puppyhead. The problem was that only after Schmidt started experiencing problems with us did it come to light that his velocity had been declining for several years, and during 2006 it was even documented month by month. The average fan and apparently not even the media were aware of those numbers, but you could have expected that someone of a GM stature, and particularly one who had been an insider with the Giants, should have been aware of that. The clue might have been that the Giants did not make any big moves to retain Schmidt. I don’t think that the necessary due diligence was done with Schmidt, and noone should have been in a better position to be forewarned than Ned. That’s why I blame him for the fiasco.

  98. dodge1612

    why is andre taking balls at first base? at first base you dont have to have as good of an arm as the other positions… maybe pierre should take balls there… he has no arm and can catch so maybe we have something when loney needs a day off. pierre should be a first baseman not andre with an actual throwing arm

  99. eslabels

    Torre’s either playing a hunch or trying to keep JP happy.

    JP vs. Cain 3 for 11 1 RBI
    MK vs. Cain 0 for 3 0 RBI

    Still, its going to be a long year if you keep taking away ABs from Kemp and Ethier and giving them to JP.

    Note to Ned: Hire Marcus Giles to be JPs personal chauffeur on gameday.

  100. messagebear

    I think the best thing would be for Ned to take a vacation until June, and then we can reassess where we stand and if we need to make any moves. Until then I don’t want to hear him scheming or doing anything.

  101. swood@rcn.com

    If Ned had posted, we’d still have Schmidt. Lots of Monday-morning QB’s on that one…in fact, I remember hardly a negative word about Schmidt until he was injured. Then it was “Oh, that was a bad signing” followed by “Oh, you could have seen the red flags for 10 years prior” followed by “Oh, Ned’s giving his old Giants’ buddy a retirement package” followed by “Any doctor in the world could have told you he was injured, Stan Conte is the worst trainer ever” followed by “They must not have even looked at the MRI of his shoulder and just signed him because they are evil greedy incompetent ******** blah blah blah.”…………………………………………………………………………………….
    I remember how widely that signing was praised in the sports media as one of the best signings of the off-season due to its short duration (comparable to the 7-year SP deals we’re seeing now).

    By puppyhead01@hotmail.com on April 1, 2008 6:18 PM

    I also remember that Puppy, which is why I don’t find fault in Ned for that signing. It had a chance of working out. Ned took a chance and it backfired. What is inexcusable though is the signing/trading for of Pierre, Loaiza, Hendy, Tomko, Nomar(resign of 07), and especially Lugo. Those are alot of bad inexplicable moves in a short period of time.

  102. oldbrooklynfan

    This great I paid $119.95 for the mosaic
    But it is not up yet.
    Not only I don’t really need it.
    But I have to watch the regular MLB-TV any way.

  103. leekfink

    You know, I was really excited about the season yesterday. Then, I was really excited about catching tonights game on TV, and tomorrow night at the Stadium.

    And then I see this ****.

    We all know that Ethier is better than Pierre–thus, he got the Opening Day start. But, I was prepared to live with the fact that Pierre was still going to start on occassion ahead of Ethier even if he shouldn’t. But Kemp is better than Ethier. Kemp hit .342 last year. You know what that makes him? The best hitter on the team last year! Oh, and by the way, he’s as fast as Pierre.

    And it’s not like he’s old and over the hill. He’s 23. He is the best athlete on the team, if not in the whole organization. He has more raw talent than any position player that has ever played in the Los Angeles Dodgers 50 years. (Last year, people got on me for saying that he could be the next Willie Mays, so I have lowered the expectations a little–but the reality, name one player in LA who has more talent. Piazza? Way too slow, and only had one season where he hit better than Kemp’s .342. Garvey? Pedro Guerrerro? Good–great, even. But not Kemp’s potential. The only one that compares is Duke Snider, whose best days were behind him when the team moved West.

    And we sit him for a guy that Rob Neyer appropriately called out as having one of the worst contracts in baseball.


    You all know that I have been reasonable about Pierre, about Ned, about Grady Little, but No!


    We could have Grady Little for this ****. We could have Jim Tracy. We could have Art Shell make up this line-up card.


    Pierre gets no cheers. Torre gets no cheers. Ned gets no cheeers. They all get booed. If Torre doesn’t have the guts to bench that worthless jerk in favor of Matt Kemp, then he is completely useless. Same with Ned. Same with McCourt.

    Oh, I’ll still be going to the games–but I will be pissed and be letting them know it.

    We all should.

    Trade Pierre!
    Fire Torre!
    Fire Ned!

  104. leekfink

    BTW–the four letter word that got **** was a workplace appropriate euphemism that starts with “C” and ends with “P.”

    So just to be clear, I was being calm.

    That’s coming to an end.

  105. rlglynn

    I don’t understand how Torre can sit Matt Kemp with all the talent that gut has. What a waste of talent to have him sitting on the bench. I’m thoroughly p*********

  106. miketink@gmail.com

    messagebear: Since the quotes in puppyhead’s excellent post sounded as if they came from you, I was astounded to read that you agreed with the post until I continued reading your post to see that the content of your post is completely opposed to puppyhead’s post. In answer to your points:The Giants made no attempt to retain Schmidt because they could not afford him which they had indicated long in advance.
    Schmidt’s velocity was not declining for several years. He was hurt twice in 2005 but seemed completely recovered in 2006 in spite of your so-called documented claims about that year. He did pitch better in the first half of 2006 than in the second half but Penny has done that for the last two years. Schmidt made the all-star team in 2006. His ERA was 3.59, 8th best in the NL, he throw 213.1 innings with 180 K’s, also 8th best in the NL. He was 5th best in the NL in batting average against. And he pitched on October 1 against the Dodgers going 6 innings with 7 K’s on 107 pitches, 66 for strikes and he threw in the 90’s all day. In this case your blaming Colletti (ad nauseum btw) is unfair in spite of all the Giant trolls that agree with you.

  107. oldbrooklynfan

    Pierre should not be hitting behind Loney.
    Watch them pitch around James when they have to.
    He probably won’t see too many good ones.
    I understand JHALL wants to here about BROOKLYN

  108. puppyhead01@hotmail.com

    2007: Pierre starts every game.
    Day 2 of 2008: Pierre has started 50% of the games.

    Shall we freak out? Really? Because a 50% improvement is a MAJOR improvement in any business.

    2007: Pierre bats 1 or 2 every game.
    2008: Pierre bats 7.

    On a scale of 1-9, Pierre’s lineup position has just “improved” by 6. That’s a 66% improvement. Huge in any business.

    Let’s see what Torre has up his sleeve, and especially how he handles late-game situations with Pierre. Especially before we start calling a HOF-manager a *** or a **** or a ***** or a worthless ******.

  109. oldbrooklynfan

    The first time I heard about the Dodgers I was 8 years old.
    My uncle and his friends came back from the 1946 Playoff.
    We lost to the Cardinals.

  110. oldbrooklynfan

    Furcal is really hopping, even though he struck out, he still looks good. How about that fielding.

  111. oldbrooklynfan

    I heard that Pedro Martinez injured himself tonight.

    Anyway I heard them talking about the ’46 playoff games.

  112. oldbrooklynfan

    That’s right Pedro hurt again according to my daughter.

    I must have took an interest. An interest I still have.
    My uncle told me all I had to know about the Dodgers.

  113. oldbrooklynfan

    Trouble with Loney he was too anxious up there. A little more patience and he could have walked. I don’t know how Pierre would have handled that though.

    My uncled taught me how to keep score, how they worked the standing, you know each game was a half game, even how to time a fast ball, but that didn’t help me much.

  114. oldbrooklynfan

    Typical LOWE scoring game.

    Jackie Robinson was my favorite player, he was exciting everybody.

    I think the fact that the Dodgers represented Brooklyn was what tied me to the team.

  115. oldbrooklynfan

    All I remember about the ’47 RS was we had a pretty cocky team. Stanky, Reese were really tough especially Stanky. Non-Dodger fans gave Jackie a bad time. But it didn’t seem to bother him. The papers were full of stories. I don’t know, I just liked looking at the action pictures. I didn’t have a T.V. yet. Not too many people did. I heard all the games on the radio. I heard that Reese put his arm around Jackie in Cincinnati. I really didn’t follow it that close.

    One thing I remember, the Dodgers had the best team in the N.L., but we always had trouble with Stan Musial and the Cardinals especially at Ebbets field and their were a lot of Cardinal fans right in our own ballpark.

    LARRY BOWA IS WHAT WE NEED to put some fight in this team. This is how Leo Durocher got them bums started and I think it was what got them to the World Series.

    Sometimes it takes more than just playing baseball.

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