Suddenly on the radar

When we arrived at Spring Training in mid February, neither Clayton Kershaw nor Blake DeWitt was in big league camp and here it is, May 25, and they will both play key roles in today’s game and potentially, the course of the 2008 season for the Dodgers.

With Andruw now going down and joining Furcal, Nomar, and Schmidt on the DL, it’s a very different team than the one that showed up in Vero just three and a half months ago. It just goes to show how quickly things can change, when you consider that three and a half months from now, we’ll be in early September, hopefully gearing up for a pennant race. I guess it’s also a reminder of just how long the season is and how each game is extremely important, but is just one part of a huge puzzle. I think that’s how I manage to remain positive after tough losses and not get too excited after big wins. It’s a big picture, and hopefully we can all see it ending with a celebration in October.

Speaking of DeWitt, he’s the subject of Ken Levine’s blog entry as a write-in candidate for the All-Star Game. For those who do not know Ken, he’s one of the two hosts of postgame DodgerTalk on KABC 790 and the Sunday Night Sports Final, which airs tonight from 6-9 p.m. Josh Suchon, the other host, is set to fly with us to Chicago tonight, so Brian Kamenetzky will host alongside Ken this evening and there’s some good stuff coming your way.

In the eight o’clock hour, they’ll be interviewing Roy Gleason and for those who don’t know his story, check this article out from a few years ago.  In the nine o’clock hour, Maury Wills will be a guest, as we wind down the 1960s celebration and head toward the 70s for the month of June.

That’s the past. The present and future will be on display today at the stadium, with Clayton Kershaw taking the mound backed by Loney, Martin, Kemp, Ethier, DeWitt, and Hu. Here’s the actual lineup:

Pierre, LF

Maza, 2B

Ethier, RF

Martin, C

Loney, 1B

Kemp, CF

DeWitt, 3B

Hu, SS

Kershaw, P

 

157 Comments

I hope today will be a day I look back and I’ll be able to say, “I went to Clayton Kershaw’s first game”. Like those who attended Sutton, Fernando, Hershiser, etc…’s first game. I can’t wait no matter the results. Our best pitching prospect in years begins his career today. Has anybody here ever been to a great past Dodgers first game?

GO DODGERS! AND KERSHAW!

Tiffee should be starting!

Good to see the Suns vs Cards today. I can’t wait to see Kershaw pitch. GO BLUE!

no Kent…no problem. Good luck today Clayton!

Looks like a “Picks To Click” lineup to me. Good luck, Clayton! Make us proud! GO BLUE!!

I’m trying to ignore it, I guess every village has one.
Regardless, GO DODGERS!

Hey I see joeyp’s back.

Well saddle up joey, take your clozapine, and watch history in the making…

Went to the game last night for the first time this season. I’ve been going since the stadium opened and I have to say that was perhaps the most BORING game I’ve ever had the non-pleasure of witnessing. ALL scoring occured in 1/3 of an inning–and the bad guys, no less–while the Dodgers amassed seven singles, many of which bounced off infielders’ gloves. No great plays, no tremendous throws, no thundering shots. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. Many have complained about LaRoche. Last time I checked, he didn’t play outfield. What’s wrong with bringing up Repko?

I sincerely hope Kershaw lives up to the hype on his first day out. The Dodgers sure could use another Fernando-Mania to jump start the club. The problem with our offense is that since we don’t have a true power hitter, we’re forced to string three and four base hits together. We’ll get a walk, an out, base hit, double play. We get guys on base, but we can’t drive them in.

LOL Kace!!!

At the beginning of the season I was on the fence about resigning Furcal. Up until last year he was a pretty good shorstop; not great, but pretty damn good. Last year, due to injuries he sucked. This year he’s at the top of his game, only he’s hurt again. I’m of the opinion, and it may be an unpopular opinion, we can’t take anymore chances on Furcal. Don’t get me wrong, I like him and his game, I just don’t trust his health. I’d like to see him packaged in a deal (maybe with Derek Lowe) to get a little pop in the lineup. The problem is I don’t trust Ned to make that happen. Unfortunately the only pop would probably have to come from an outfield position, meaning Pierre would have to move as well. If it were that easy to do it’d’ve been done already. Not only that, but it would leave us with no speed (aside from Kemp and Martin) and no lead-off hitters (assuming Pierre’s a lead-off hitter to begin with). Ned’s really painted the Dodgers into a corner.

LaRoche is playing 1B now in Vegas.

Why would LaRoche play first in Vegas and not 2nd; unless the Dodgers are looking to move Loney. I don’t get it. Something’s going down. Any thoughts?

I think Kemp would make a good leadoff hitter. Marty would also be a good leadoff hitter. Both have better OBP’s than Phew. Nothing wrong with some power in the leadoff spot as well as speed. The leadoff hitter often times comes up with runners in scoring position. If we could unload Phew, we could go after Adam Dunn to play left. He is average on defense but will hit 40 dingers and drive in 100+ runs. I know he strikes out alot, but most 40 homer guys do. Besides, striking out for Dunn avoids more double plays. Just a thought. Keeping my fingers crossed that after Jelly Roll gets the knee fixed and clears his head in minor league rehab, he will be productive. Still need to get rid of Phew. Please Ned, make it so!!

Not a clue Kace. Wonders never cease in the Dodger hierarchy….

1st base?
Can anyone tell me when Jones injured his knee? I’m curious to know if he came to the club this way.

hu’s going to be clutch today.

For that matter, Repko could lead off and play any outfield position. When Jones gets back, we will still be in the same 4 outfielder 3 position dilema we started with. Phew must go!!!

JHall- It’s odd that you mention Adam Dunn; that’s exactly who I had in mind when I wrote that comment. Could they use a good fragile shorstop, feeble left fielder and a hit or miss pitcher?

I’m so excited about this game. I’m buying into the hype. I think I’ve got a man crush on Kershaw already. I’ve been waiting for this for 2 years.

To Ned, “pop” means getting another old man veteran.

Thought – didn’t they experiment with Loney in the outfield last year at Vegas? LaRoche at 1B, Loney in left? Eh, Loney’s the raditional LH 1B and I can’t believe they’d move him if they didn’t for Texiera last year.

Always expect the unexpected with the Nerdster though. He can screw-up in ways we can’t even conceive.

Go Kersh!!!

God this kid throws a heavy ball!

Welcome to the big leagues Mr. Kershaw!!

God, he looks so young. He’s going to need more than two pitches to make it up here.

3Ks and a hit to the most dangerous hitter in the league! Not a bad first, Clayton!

Koufax pretty much got by on two pitches…Kreshaw’s just so overly geeked right now. He’ll probably gain control as his adrenalin wears downa bit. And it’s a good thing Pierre has great speed so he could go get that muff of his real quick.

He knows he’s a Dodger, that’s for sure. Everyone who walks, scores.

Strikes out the side and gives up a run. He’s very green. Pitching in the big leagues takes a lot more than “stuff”, but he’s the man, and will be for a long time. This kid’s here to stay. I hope Honeycutt doesn’t F him up.

Geez this kids already clocking 98. Wonder what he’ll do when he fills out a bit.

Jeff who?

As far as LaRoche playing first base at Vegas, I don’t get that at all. Last time Loney played the outfield he planted his face in the right field scoreboard. Loney is THE first baseman. Maybe Maza can lead off and play left field?

Oh my god Eric. I switched from the MLBTV to the blog and that is what I was going to say.. LOL

How about Maza! It’s about time we get some production out of 2nd base.

That HR by Maza sure woulda come in handy the other night when JoJo sent CC® up there to strikeout.

He has a changeup that he’s working on. Just doesn’t have great command of it just yet.

Great minds think alike, jhall! LOL!

Koufax did more than get by with, essentially, 2 pitches. But that was Koufax. Kershaw definitely has the chops but he’s going to be a work in progress.

Good thing that wasn’t Bennett.

You know, I like that number. Right between Drysdale and Hershiser. Someone had their thinking cap on.

enchanted, Iwas thinking the same thing BEFORE JoJo sent Jones up. Figured Maza had a 1000% better chance of making contact with the tying run at third.

I did’nt know about the changeup. That’s a good thing.

Koufax was wild when he first came up. It took him 4-5 years to find his control. Started in 1955 and did not become effective till 1960-61.

What’s with Loney? Striking out a lot isn’t like him.

I have to say that I thought Easler would keep these guys on a more even keel than he has.

Growing pains for Loney and Kemp!!!

Guess they need to learn to make adjustments to the pitcher’s adjustments.

Gawd I’d like to see Kersh get a W his first game.

In Koufax’s day, they had the rule that, if you were given a certain amount of bonus money, you had to stay on the major league roster. Who knows how much sooner he might have reached his potential if he could’ve worked out his control issues in the minors?

Clayton “capital ‘K’” Kershaw!

There’s a story about that, seesky. They say that the Dodgers had to demote another lefty in order to keep Koufax – Tommy Lasorda.

Of course, almost any story involving Lasorda is subject to intense scrutiny. :-)

Two hits through four innings ain’t too shabby.

Just got inand the kid looks good
MAZA hey!

The kid’s settled down real nicely. Now, if we could SCORE SOME F***ING RUNS!!!

Yeah, Russ! Now c’mon……….

My Loney has a first name……….

M_A_R_T_I_N

I’ve heard that story, eric. You’re right about the necessary scrutiny needed for a Lasorda story….RUSSELL!!….and he just barely got back…the kid’s got a lead!!

Rats!®

Dude went waaaay out of the baseline to bother Hu.

Even though we didn’t get that double play, i gotta say that was a smart change up to induce that ground ball. This kid can play.

The kid qualifies for the potential win.

His pitch count is excellent after the first. Torre said he wasan’t on a specific pitch count. I wonder how much further does he go? He’s looking great.

Good, he’s batting for himself. Once this kid’s gotten over the MLB jitters he’s settled in nicely. We need this in the worst way.

Let’s get this kid a win!!!!!

V_E_R_Y__G_O_O_D

damn…..the defense let him down that inning. this guy deserves a win.

I hope we score here. Kersaw deserves a W.

I hope we score here. Kershaw deserves a W.

Sorry about the double post.

Ditto, ditto Kace. LOL

Ethier isn’t swinging with that nice easy swing he had at the beginning of the year. He’s uppercutting the ball.

$#!+ YEAH!

M_A_R_T_I_N again

I knew Marty wouldn’t let Kersh down!

That’s what a clean-up hitter’s supposed to do!

We need the piano with Kent’s name on it now!!

Nice ole BS HU!

Why is it every walk we give up scores??

Rats®!!

The bottom line is:
We’re still alive.

Disappointed for Kersh having that run score to tie, but a very nice debut.

Does Brox even know which end of the bat to hold?

Can someone please give me some reasonable explanation to have broxton bat with a man on when it is almost impossible for us to get a run with our good hitters?

Another version of BIG BAD JON

saves – Puhols, Ludwick & Glaus

Another GOOD SHOW from Broxton.

Let’s get a run and let Sammy shut the door.

Another fine lead-off AB from little Juany.

Who here is for Maza leading off?

either hits like a short spot with no power. we need a solid hitter with anywhere from 18 – 25 plus hrs. trade baby arms.

Me E. I was just thinking that when you posted it..

Loney’s long over due.

Hope that wasn’t our last look at the game. Maybe a day off wouldn’t hurt Loney right now.

I think Loney needs a break, maybe one game or so.
He’s young but even the young get futiged.

oh wee, bottom line… we are not as good as most thought. Ned, you got to come up with a package and get rid of Eihter before his stock is so low that no one will want and outfielder that can’t hit more than 12 hrs and hits 275.
we are better than that.

PA, get back on the short yellow bus, have them take you back to your hole, crawl in and learn to spell.

Time for The Bison™ to end the game.

Nice going SAMMY.

Let’s get a run!!!

Couldn’t they have made it a LITTLE harder? Growing Pains. Serenity Now. Growing Pains. Serenity Now…

We’re putting up a good fight, don’t forget we’re playing the Cardinals.

Saito is dealing!

Tiffee time?

We will we will ROCK YOU
Atta way ta go SAITO.

Go Tiffee!

Can Pierre show us some of his bunting skills?

Now let’s see that wonderful Pierre bunting style.

Freaking great!

Nice bunt Pierre you POS!

Yup, that’s it Juan.

AREYOUKIDDINGME?????????????????/

Now the thrown out attempting to steal…

Is there something I’m not getting by having a .100 hitter bat for a .500 hitter???

Oh yeah, a hit.

Phew is UNACCEPTABLE™!!!!

Let’s go Andre, show Joe what you’re worth!

wHERE’S THAT DAMNED PIANO????

Andre!!!!!

That’s showin’ ‘em short arms!!! LOL

PA, where are you now????????

On the short yellow bus.

Sweet!!

E__T__H__I__E__R ****YES
We beat the Cards a big win anytime.!!!!!!!!!!
Kershaw was sansational in his first official start.

I wonder if PA is auditioning for Ned’s assistant???

Wonderful outcome, thanks to Andre. Also a very good debut by Kershaw, I believe.

I totally don’t understand Torre’s fixation with Sweeney and Jones two days ago – pinch hitting with complete flops who don’t even belong on the team, and today doing it to hit for a guy who’s had the hot hand in four at bats. The man’s no HOF manager in my book. If we win anything, it’ll be in spite of him and Ned.

PA is looking for our short spot Eihter. LOL

Maza starting at 2B… Tiffee leading off the 9th… DY must be wondering who he has to kill to get some playing time.

Well guys, great to see Kershaw today, and a great win. Now I’m off to watch the Laker game, so see you all later. Go Dodgers and Lakers!

If I was DY, I’d start with Sweeney.

Either Torre is showing that Sweeney is worthless so Ned will DFA him, or he’s a complete idiot.

KERSHAW!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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The kid pitched beautifully. With better plays by Popgun and Blake, he might not have allowed any runs at alll.
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I gotta hand it to Maza, he’s been much better than I anticipated thus far. And he plays like a guy who really wants to stick after eight years in the minors.
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If you’re going to send up somebody to bat for Maza, wouldn’t it make more sense to send up DY who could also take over for him at second base if needed?
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Congrats to Popgun who scored the winning run due to his inability to bunt.

I’ll go with Tory’s an idiot.

eric – I emailed you my info – thanks again!!
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I got to watch the game, but couldn’t post until now – what a roller coaster ride that was. Kershaw was very impressive!
(definitely the equivalent of gnats’ Linsecum, and will be better with a few more outings)
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Andre – awesome today!!!!!!! A very proud fan today!!!! I was cheering so loud, my dog was afraid of me.
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Russell and Maza – awesome today too!!

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PA – you need to be locked up in a room with Joey and work out your issues

Between Sweeney and Jones, there’s 169 totally wasted at bats. Think you’ve got to figure that with anybody else taking the swings, we’d have scored another 15 runs minimum. Why is it that JoJo has to see the feeble over and over again, then still put them in meaningful game situations? To coin a phrase, UNACCEPTABLE™.

Nice Dodger debut for Terry Tiffee today as well. Let’s see what we can do against the Cubbies.

The only reasonable answer I can find for always putting Sweeney on the line and leaving DY for the unimportant pinch hit situations is that DY is expected to be with the club all season and will have his time later. Hopefully the case with Sweeney is that he’ll be DFA’ed soon unless he can really turn it around. Of course, I’ve been waiting for that DFA for at least the past month. Maza and Tiffee were probably brought up as interim fill-ins, but who knows how thay prove out with Nomar possibly gone for the season (I hope) and Hu obviously needing his playing time in AAA. So far Maza is showing me that he just might belong after 8 years in the minors.

Great win today, too bad Kershaw didn’t get the credit. I nearly fell off my rocking horse when Torre batted Sweeny in place of Maza. I’m not a big Maza believer, but to bat a .100 hitter for a guy who’s already gone 2 for 4 on the day baffles me. It’s the second time in two games he’s made an identical decision, only last time it was wasting DY batting for Hu with the pitcher’s spot coming up next. I don’t have to remind you what Jones did with that golden opportunity.
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BTW – What happened? I left for a little bit and we gained another village idiot. We need a bouncer. How did short arm Ethier do today? I’ll take 3 for 5 all day long. All that kid does is produce when he’s allowed to get into his groove.

PA – you need to be locked up in a room with Joey and work out your issues
By dnelson@mcsd.k12.ca.us on May 25, 2008 5:16 PM

LMAO!!! You’re on it Nelly.

I was at the game today.
Clayton Kershaw is 8 feet tall.
When he throws his fastball, there is a small sonic boom that follows it.
His curve breaks so much that it looks like a pick-off move to first base.
He worked out at a pool yesterday and instead of swimming laps, he just runs on the water.
He is amazing!
———-
OK, in all seriousness, he was very good. Far better than you should expect a 20-year old with just about 2 years in the minor leagues to be. With a little bit of luck, he would have shut out the Cards (if Pierre had gotten a handle on Pujols ball in the corner and Loney could have tracked down that pop-up).
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It was also great being there. People were into the game, and into the warm-up. There was a throng of fans just watching him stretch out, and fans (and even the bullpen pitchers) were intent on watching him warm-up.
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His fastball really does pop, and his curveball really is public enemy number one. And, his confidence is great. As much as he was clearly up for the game, he did not seem fazed and did not panic when he got into trouble.
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It’s true that he clearly still has some work to do. He has no pick-off move (Rick Monday pointed this out on radio, and Charley Steiner mentioned it made sense because he is not used to pitching with runners on base). He used a straight change his second time through the line-up, and he’ll be even better once he perfects that pitch, and maybe develops a fourth (a slider, maybe?). He could get minor leaguers out all day with his current repertoire, but the Cardinals fouled off a lot of pitches on him in the first and seventh. But it’s just a tremendous start. With a little care in handling and some patience, he’s going to be amazing.

Re Laroche: I’m a Loney fan (and in other news, the world is round), and don’t think that it’s an issue that LaRoche got a start at 1B in Las Vegas. They obviously want him to have more versatility, and it seems that his relative lack of versatility is why he is in AAA rather than Los Angeles (he’s a better prospect than Hu, and Tiffee and Maza are journeymen/career minor leaguers). If LaRoche could play first, third, and the corner outfield spots like Tiffee, he might be up here now instead (maybe–the team might still want him playing every day).
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Without Tiffee, the only other option at First Base is Sweeney, who is barely passable (I suppsoe Kent could move over too, if necessary, and Russell Martin could probably play anywhere, but realistically. . . .). Loney could twist something or just plain get sick. Or, even at 24, need a day off, if just to clear his head. This weekend was awful for him, but he had been turning it back on (that can be said also for Kemp, and most of the team–and Loney and Kemp, along with DeWitt, and to a lesser extent Ethier and Martin, are still developing). But his job is totally secure. Nobody doubts that Loney will hit again soon. (The great thing about these guys is the question is not whether they will be good, but just how good will they be, and when will we see it.
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So, yeah, let LaRoche play some first base so we have some options for him.
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Of course, I agree with the general sentiment here that either DeWitt or LaRoche should start thinking about second base (either for when that Piano lands on Jeff Kent, or for next season). I think that the organization sees LaRoche as possibly too big or slow for middle infield, and personally, it seems to me that DeWitt is the better choice of the the two to change positions to 2B. Unfortunately, the organization is unlikely to work him out there while Jeff Kent is with the team (it would send a signal to Kent). So I don’t know the harm of working LaRoche out there, just to see.

Torre is showing more and more that he is the wrong manager for the Dodgers. Why anyone would use Jones and Sweeney in those spots on Friday and Sunday is beyond me. It just shows his blind preference for veterans no matter how poorly they are performing even though he has much better young players available. We don’t need that kind of mindset. But that is Ned’s mindset, too, so they are like two peas in a pod to the detriment of the Dodgers’ season and the youth movement. We can only hope that they will wise up before it’s too late, but that’s probably just wishful thinking.

It’ll be interesting to see how Torre manages next year. For the last 12 years he’s had some of the best players in the business, most all established vets that at some point of the season turned it on. That could be his “style”, in which case he’s going to have a VERY long wait on Kent and Swooney. If he learns and adapts, then I’ll cut him some slack (it’ll also help that Kant and Swooney won’t be around to use.) But I’ve a feeling that we have to go back to the JoJo of St.Louis and Atlanta to get a gauge of what his real capabilities (or lack thereof) are. With the Yankees, you could’ve picked names out of a hat and won. That can’t and won’t get it done with this team.

I’m kinda waiting for Nerd to go along another month or so before the urge to trade for an impact bat overwhelms him and he does something stupid. The impact bat is in Vegas if they’d teach him how yo play 2B and call him up. It may not be his best position, nor may he be the most rangy, but it’d be an upgrade over Kent both offensively and defensively.

Seems Ethier picked up a new nickname here yesterday… Maybe if DY had a catchy nickname he’d get more playing time. How about The Assasin™ because he comes off the bench and puts a hit on an opposing pitcher? The kid needs a break. Anyone think he couldn’t have done more with the 30+ ABs Sweeney’s gotten? Between him and Tiffee (both switch hitters) you’ve got PH covered.

Let’s get after the Cubbies today and try and take the series!!

Great win yesterday. I do not know how you guys can post all day long, I thought I was a Dodger geek, but your loyalty to the post is tremendous! You must not have young kids!

Anyway after the 1st (Cards fouled off a ton of pitches) the kid settled down and was all anyone could have expected. I had the chance to meet him and see him when he was in Rookie Ball with the GCL Dodgers and his personality is what makes him. You could not tell that he was a bonus baby. He was running around chasing foul balls, being the bat boy, joking with his teammates. He truly loves the game and works incredibly hard. We are lucky to have him!

Thank You LOGAN WHITE and fellow scouts!!! Next GM anyone?

On Ethier, Joe were you paying attention! The kid can hit!. He has such a great swing and I would like to see him turn on a few more balls like he did on that game winner. Now that he is in the lineup everyday we will see the .300 potential 30 doubles/20 hr Andre…PA must not watch the Dodgers very often. Hopefully by the time Andruw comes back, Andre will have cemented his value to the team and he will not be treated like a piece of bad meat!

Thru all the injuires and bad decisions we are 3.5 out and only 1 I believe in the wild card, so we have a lot to thankful for. Lets get the Cubbies! Go Dodgers!

Pretty impressive win yesterday considering the 5-8 hitters went 0 for 16. Luckily the 1-4 guys got it done. Good pitching will do that for you. Kersh looked good and is exciting to watch. I’d like to see our defense tighten it up. Maza, Ethier, and Marty were clutch. Joe, get Kant out of the cleanup spot. It has Martin’s name written all over it. Loney and Kemp look lost right now. DeWitt didn’t get a hit either but his AB’s looked better than Loney and Kemp’s. I’m sure they will snap out of it. Hu is playing good at short but is really struggling with the bat. Let’s take this series from the Cubs. Keep it going Billz.

I agree JHALL loney needs a day or so off. Hu will not hit enough to be a regular in the Bigs, he looks overpowered. We need Kent to start hitting with some power or we may be in trouble. We have done well to close the gap on the Snakes and we canot afford to fall 6-7 games back again.

This Furcal injury has me really scared! I do not see us contending without him! And I hope it does not lead to a panic trade…look below Ned from the LA Times! how can you make so may blunders and still remain in charge..You are getting every opportunity to make it right so take advantage of it!

With Andruw Jones joining Rafael Furcal, Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Schmidt on the disabled list, and with Esteban Loaiza having been designated for assignment, the Dodgers are paying $49.5 million in annual salaries to five players who can’t play.

Someone was asking a few threads back what 2009 FAs looked like… very bleak field for 2009, especially assuming those with team options are picked up. Here’s the cream of the crop:

2B Orlando Hudson

SS Orlando Cabrera, Rafael Furcal

OF Adam Dunn, Rocco Baldelli, Milton Bradley

SP CC Sabathia, Ben Sheets, AJ Burnett (possible), Jon Garland, Randy Wolf, Mark Mulder

CL Francisco Rodriguez

Its almost imperative that DeWitt or LaRoche learn 2B. I doubt the D’s go after Dunn with both Pierre and the cow already. Realistically you’d have to move both of them or create a bigger problem next year than you have now. Alternatively, you could sign Dunn, but then have to trade away Ethier or Kemp (let’s face it, they’re the only tradable OF commodities thanks to Ned’s contracts) for a 2B or SS. If you resign Furcal, given his recent history you’re really looking at a part time Furcal and a part time Hu or DeJesus again next year, and who knows what after that. I still see the D’s going after Ben Sheets. Lasorda loves him and NY or Boston will end up in a bidding war for Sabathia. McDonald is another year away at least, and with Lowe gone, Sheets makes sense: Billz, Kersh, Penney, Kuroda, Sheets wouldn’t be a bad rotation.

I agree JHALL loney needs a day or so off. Hu will not hit enough to be a regular in the Bigs, he looks overpowered. We need Kent to start hitting with some power or we may be in trouble. We have done well to close the gap on the Snakes and we canot afford to fall 6-7 games back again.

This Furcal injury has me really scared! I do not see us contending without him! And I hope it does not lead to a panic trade…look below Ned from the LA Times! how can you make so may blunders and still remain in charge..You are getting every opportunity to make it right so take advantage of it!

With Andruw Jones joining Rafael Furcal, Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Schmidt on the disabled list, and with Esteban Loaiza having been designated for assignment, the Dodgers are paying $49.5 million in annual salaries to five players who can’t play.

Someone was asking a few threads back what 2009 FAs looked like… very bleak field for 2009, especially assuming those with team options are picked up. Here’s the cream of the crop:

2B Orlando Hudson

SS Orlando Cabrera, Rafael Furcal

OF Adam Dunn, Rocco Baldelli, Milton Bradley

SP CC Sabathia, Ben Sheets, AJ Burnett (possible), Jon Garland, Randy Wolf, Mark Mulder

CL Francisco Rodriguez

Its almost imperative that DeWitt or LaRoche learn 2B. I doubt the D’s go after Dunn with both Pierre and the cow already. Realistically you’d have to move both of them or create a bigger problem next year than you have now. Alternatively, you could sign Dunn, but then have to trade away Ethier or Kemp (let’s face it, they’re the only tradable OF commodities thanks to Ned’s contracts) for a 2B or SS. If you resign Furcal, given his recent history you’re really looking at a part time Furcal and a part time Hu or DeJesus again next year, and who knows what after that. I still see the D’s going after Ben Sheets. Lasorda loves him and NY or Boston will end up in a bidding war for Sabathia. McDonald is another year away at least, and with Lowe gone, Sheets makes sense: Billz, Kersh, Penny, Kuroda, Sheets wouldn’t be a bad rotation.

Jhall, I agree Loney looked lost and he needs a day or so to get a mental break. Dewitt has such a sound approach he should be ok, but Kemp can get so lost sometimes, then he has a 3-5 day with a couple of doubles….We really need Kemp, kent, and Ethier to start driving the ball. If not home runs, we need gappers.

I saw this information in the LA times today,

With Andruw Jones joining Rafael Furcal, Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Schmidt on the disabled list, and with Esteban Loaiza having been designated for assignment, the Dodgers are paying $49.5 million in annual salaries to five players who can’t play.

How can you make so many bad decisions and still have the opportunity to do your job. In most of our fields if we made this many bad decisions we would be canned. Anyway ned you are getting multiple chances and I hope you prove Frank right. You have started with pulling the plug on Loiaza, now Nomar has to go. There is no reason to keep him on the roster. Sweeney was a great PH at one time, but maybe his ship has sailed…Keep cleaning house!!!!

Big-K look good yesterday. He has a smoking fastball and a mean curve ball that will make your knees buckel. I can just imagine how more impressive he will be when he gets down and offspeed pitch along with maybe a slider.

enchanted I see I was not the only one to repost, I thought it was just me that was having issues posting…

Not alot to get excited about in the FA market and honestly looking at our past history, the Dodgers have not done well in FA.

Sheets is a beast when healthy, the problem is he has not been healthy for a full year in quite sometime…but I agree with lasordas recommendation they will probably go after him.

If Kuo proves that he can stay healthy, as he’s done so far, I believe that next year we need to give him the chance to start again. He could take the place of Lowe, and we’d be in great shape with two power pitching lefties. I think that Kuo is way underutilized in the relief role. If we can add Kershaw and Kuo to the starter mix for next season, we would not need to go after Sheets with a dubious health record.

I think DeWitt could make the switch to 2B more easily than LaRoche. He is, in my opinion, more agile and a better size for 2nd. DY also looked good at 2nd in spring training. Free Agent market this off season is weak. Given the weak FA offerings and Ned’s history, I would stay away. Big thing is going to be if we resign Ferk or not. His back issues make me very leary of signing him. I guess we’ll have to wait and see how he plays out this year. If he is in and out of the lineup all year with the back problem, unfortunately, I would let him go.

I agree Bear. It is lunacy to sign players with a history of injuries. It rarely works out.

Billz, Penny, Kuroda, Kershaw, Kuo/Schmidt. I’ll take it. No need to go after an overpriced FA with injury history.

New thread with lineup up top. Let’s go Dodgers!!

Yeah dodgerboy – don’t know what kind of program they’ve got running this blog, but its always something – double posts, losing data, flashing bars. Someday maybe they’ll get it fixed.

Unfortunately I think we’ll be needing a 2B and SS next year. I agree jhall, DeWitt’s the logical choice to slide over with LaRoche playing 3B. Problem solved. Short’s an issue unless Hu takes a lot away from this first year and improves next. DeJesus might be able to make the jump though. Could just let those two battle it out and see what happens.

Messagebear, I love your optimism on Kuo, but to have to depend on him full time in the rotation is a lot to ask. I agree that watching him and envisioning Billz, Kuo, Kershaw, and Kuroda….that would be a strong front 4. Power arms is the way to go. I love people who can make people swing and miss!

BRING BACK A MARTINEZ… these guys on Dodger talk are a waste of time! at least we dont have to put up with Bob Harvey.

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