Camelback Ranch – open for business

Yesterday was a great day of introductory meetings and a news conference, but today is the actual opening of Camelback Ranch - Glendale. There’s still quite a bit of construction going on at the Ballpark, but the practice fields are ready to go and we’re set up in our new offices.

And, in keeping with the “first day” theme, here’s a post from historian Mark Langill…

“One of the most unique Dodger spring training photos was snapped on the first day of training camp in 1970 and featured manager Walter Alston on a bicycle with such youngsters as Steve Garvey, Bobby Valentine, Bill Russell and Tom Paciorek tagging along and riding two-per-bicycle. Most of the prospects enjoyed long careers, including Paciorek, who has spent more than three decades in pro ball as a player and broadcaster. But that was the only day Paciorek would be pictured wearing uniform No. 53, which had belonged to pitcher Don Drysdale from 1956 to 1969 and later was retired by the ballclub upon Drysdale’s election to the Hall of Fame in 1984. According to Paciorek, he walked into the clubhouse the next day and found uniform No. 17 in his locker. He asked clubhouse attendant Nobe Kawano about the change from Drysdale’s famous number. “I saw you play, kid,” Kawano replied. “You’re not that good.”

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I know a lot of you are probably excited about McRanch being open for business but I, for one, could care less. I prefer seeing the everyday players at Dodger Stadium. I I sound a little “sour” I am sorry………I’ve been trying to have a positive attitude but with each passing day, it becomes more difficult.

Good Morning ITD, Dodgerfaithful. It is cloudy and cold in Boise but it is still a beautiful day. Spring Training, WOW!!! I have been waiting for those words. I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentines Day!
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to L.A. in 2009!!!!!!!!
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The Quest for #7 starts today!!!!!
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GO GET THE CHAMPIONSHIP!!!!!!!!!

dodger4life ~ I knew you’d come to balance things out :)

I have been a little on edge also, True it is almost a month without any nicotine, and longer with out Manny, which I am fine without both just a little edgy, I shall do better.
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to L.A. in 2009!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

tru ~ Please cheer up:) The young core is still with the team and the market for pitchers was a bad one (although I prefered Garland over Wolf). Pierre will not start in LF: either Manny settles for 2 years or we will trade for someone before the season starts. As long as we stay healthy we’ll have a really good year. I do agree, I would rather save my money for games that count. But I would like to go to ST once in my life to see all the baseball going on. Maybe when I retire from teaching and have more time available. Go Dodgers!!!

And as far as Andre goes, I’m sure everything will be alright. Worst case it goes to arbitration and he gets his feelings hurt a little. He’ll get over it in due time. Plus I still believe they will work something out before arbitration.

dishguy ~ thanks for th encouraging words. I know as soon as the season starts I will be cheering for my Boys in Blue. I always do, win or lose.

Totally agree with your feelings, trublu. I feel worst over the fact that management does not care about acknowledging Andre’s value, performance, and most of all exemplary attitude. Frankly I would much rather have him on my team than Manny. I guess I come from the days when as a manager in the corporate world and as a business owner myself I always gave my people somewhat more of a raise than they expected, or more than their past performance demanded. That way the people always seemed to be motivated to work harder to justify my faith in them. Of course, that approach only works with the right people. I believe that Andre is the right people – too bad that Frank, Ned, and maybe even Ng are not.

When it comes to Manny, I may be of the unpopular thinking that I really don’t want Manny at this point. I believe we’ll do just fine to have a couple of our guys fight out for the LF position, if only Torre will be a fair judge of who deserves to be in the everyday lineup. If that doesn’t work, then I’m sure we can find somebody for the outfield in the July trade market. I have the feeling that Manny will wind up being a disappointment rather than a solution wherever he winds up with a reluctant term contract on his part. I think the guy is a jerk, albeit a good hitting jerk at least in his past history. Let him pull his demonstrated negative crap somewhere else.

bear ~ as always, very well said.

messagebear, I cannot agree with you on Manny although I understand why you feel this way, for all his eccentric doings, his attitude was only called into question over a 30 day period after 12 plus years in the ML…I hope Manny will appreciate that the Dodgers are the only team to want him and that it is the economy hurting his long term contract needs…I feel that Manny may be tempermental, but he is not stupid, contrary to popular belief…I think he is hearing that his actions with the Red Sox has hurt his value and if he is to command a better contract over the next 6 years that he wants to play…he has to prove it on the field with his play and his attitude…

Maybe I am seeing the glass half full, but I think he will be an asset that will help not only win the NL West but take us to a place we have not visited in 21 years….WS or bust with Manny!!!!

Bear I couldn’t disagree with you anymore regarding left field. And I know you know and anyone else BTW that JP would be our left fielder. They are paying him, this season 2Xs as much as Bobby Abreau.

And then as Manny goes I think for 16 years the guy (other than 30 or so days) has been considered a great team mate. He has fun playing the game and it shows, his agent aside this is not Barry Bonds were talking about. Manny is not a jerk who does not connect with fans nor his teammates. Our guys loved him last year and that was legit. All the fans loved him and unless they are lying, the coaches loved him. I believe that it took Manny (or a guy like him) to come here so the younger players didn’t have to deal with the Jeff Kent types. Torre said if u guys didn’t read yet that he expects Manny to sign with us. I am not gonna let the biz side of things affect me as a fan, as I agree this Negotation has been a real turn off. But then if I let Biz effect me as a fan, I wouldn’t be a Dodger Fan anymore.

I’m going to try and be better about posting more frequently on ITD this year, I am completely and absolutely in love with this team. I think we can win our division without Manny, but the sky is the limit if we do sign him. I wore my Martin jersey all day yesterday in celebration of our spring training beginning, and I cant wait for games to get under way. Has anyone here ordered the MLB.TV before? I just recently got stationed in new mexico so I don’t get prime ticket like I did when I lived in las vegas, i’m thinking of ordering MLB.TV but would like some opinions on it if ya’ll have any, thanks!

GO DODGERS!!

I read you, rams… and jungar and always respect both of your views. I hope that the situation with Manny resolves soon and your wishes are satisfied. I was mainly trying to make a point between Andre and Manny and show where my importance lies. Can’t disagree with you that Pierre is probably the designated LF replacement if Manny isn’t there, and that’s on Torre’s shoulders. I think Torre is crap when it comes to judging and accepting young talent, so probably neither DY or Repko stand any chance.

Welcome back, bluesplash!

bluesplash ~ I’ve had MLB.TV for many years and the quality has vastly improved. I think it is great. You do need a high speed internet connection though. The premium package is well worth the slightly higher expense. Go Dodgers!!!

I want Manny, because I cheer hard for Ethier and Martin etc..If that makes any sense..Ethier will just mash hitting around Manny and not feel as he has to be the guy..Manny takes alot of heat off the rest of the group…

But the jist of it is, I don;t want Pierre playing and we wont play a replacement level player instead of Pierre. It’s Manny or Pierre and thats an easy choice for me.

I found it pretty interesting that Josh didn’t decide to address the Dylan Hernandez article a bit in his post…he usually addresses those things a bit with a sentence or two. Maybe he doesn’t have any other spin on it? Who knows? I agree with tru on caring less about McRanch. If you want to go to Arizona, pay affordable prices and see games that count, invade Chase Field during the season when the Dodgers are in town. The full product is on the field and you won’t feel sick to your stomach supporting Frank’s scheme to fleece the Dodger fans.

Did anyone notice that Kenny G has a Dodgers Blog now? Talk about a shill. I am always amazed by the tagline at the bottom of all of the Dodgers.com stories that say the stories do not need to be approved by MLB or the club. He writes like he is the McCourt’s personal PR guy…maybe he is? At any rate, I read his stories to get the management side and then read everyone else to get the real side of the story.

I must be missing something…I just looked at several other teams in the Cactus League and their ticket prices are a couple of bucks less or virtually identical to the Dodgers; excepting the premium seats right behind the home plate screen. I agree the prices are outragous for practice games, but they are mostly in line with the other teams. I would like to go to ST, but to see the workouts, not necessarily the games. But I would much rather spend my hard earned cash on real games.

Dish – those prices at Vero were $20 per game last year. That would be an increase of $70. Do you see the point? The Dodgers keep saying they did this for the fans? Really? Raising prices by $70 bucks on tickets is for the fans? There isn’t one ticket at McRanch that is at the same price level as last year with Vero Beach. The McCourts made the move for one reason and one reason only…too make more money by selling the fans a bill of goods that it was better for them that the team was in Arizona because of location. It’s a load of cr@*p!

I feel better now:)

cy ~ come on, they didn’t have a Diamond Club last year at Vero. You can sit right behind those $90 Diamond Club seats for $26, which is still way too high for a practice game, but in line with the other teams in Arizona. Look at the Cubs, Angels, and Giants; their ticket prices are almost the same, save the seats reserved for the Beverly Hills gang. And for the poor folk like me, they have $8 tickets in the outfield.

Dish – no, they didn’t have diamond club, but they did have seat right behind home plate, right? The seats were $20 bucks. I had season tickets in Vero for the last 2 years. The $8 dollar tickets on the berm were $5 in Vero. Do you see what I’m getting at here? They have raised prices on everything. If you lived in SoCal, you would recognize the pattern. McCourts do something “for the fans”, raise prices because of the do something, and laugh all the way to the bank. The McCourts have raised prices on every single thing since they got to LA. They couldn’t figure out a way to screw with ST because the city had a large say in price points. Now, with Glendale giving them autonomy to screw the fans, they do just that just like they do in LA. This is the McCourt pattern and I’m pretty tired of it.

Gurnick is one of the worst writers I have read…He adds no substance or opinion…He is a puppet!!!! not interested in his blog…Just my opinion….

Don’t forget the scented towels!!!

Until this season, their payroll has been one of the highest in baseball, so I don’t see how they are just screwing the fans. If I were to go to ST, and I won’t, it would cost me a heck of a lot more to travel to Florida than Arizona. Paying a couple of bucks more than Padres fans is not crazy outragous to me. Now right behind home plate is a lot more, but most of the seats are priced comparable to other teams. And even if I did buy the Diamond Club seats I would still save a lot more money than if I went to Florida. I do agree that my living in Utah does limit my access to the McCourts actions. But the attendance at Dodger Stadium tells me that the market can more than bare the current ticket prices.

rams – Gurnick is definitely a puppet.

bpb – That’s right, I forgot about the scented towels…haha!

Based on the discussed idea that the size of player payroll should somehow equate the cost of tickets to the fans, I can just hear the wheels turning in Frank’s head now – sell them on the fact that signing Manny justifies adding another $2.00 to each ticket not already pre-sold in season tickets. Who’s for adding another dollar to parking while we’re at it.

By the way, Frank – given what’s been happening with housing prices, how much have you lost on the two Malibu mansions so far? Oh, I do feel your pain NOT.

dish – Just because there payroll is (was) high, doesn’t mean they weren’t screwing the fans. Payroll does not equal fan satisfaction. The McCourts have hid behind their payroll problems to justify their price hikes. Now that they are lowering payroll (finally, I might add), they don’t seem to be giving much back to the fans, do they? As far as the travel to FL vs. AZ, you are correct and that is what McCourt is trying to get you to think. He doesn’t want you to realize that he moved ST to a state where all of the NL West teams are plus the Angels. He doesn’t want you to think about how much cheaper it would be to make a roadie to San Diego or Arizona or Anaheim in the regular season to see the team play. His strategy is to make everyone believe that he is doing this solely for the fans so they won’t question how many holes this move has in it. Heck, even Randy Wolf criticized the prices of ST tickets at McRanch. If that doesn’t speak volumes, I don’t know what does.

Dish…BTW, if you bought season tickets in the Diamond Club section for $90 a game versus the $20 a game it cost in Vero and you still think you would be out on travel expenses, then you need to find a new travel agent my friend. There is no way that traveling to FL costs $2520 more than traveling to AZ ($70 difference times 2 tickets at 18 ST games).

I’m excited about the opening of Camelback Ranch, might not be the move I wanted, but it’s the move we’ve got, and it’s nice to have the option to see the Dodgers play in a spiffy new building, that only happens once every… what, half century? Even longer with the way the McCourts have been keeping up DS. For every hole they have in management of Baseball Operations, they have strengths in taking care of the real estate (including The Houses on Malibu Hill).

Of course, affording to go, for me, is the problem. Same problem I’ve had every other year of my life, except starting this year, the cost to watch Dodgers ST has gone down from House Payment to a Month of Rent.

But as many of the Dodger faithful find themselves out of jobs, getting their hours cut, losing their houses, and still the prices continue to rise (or stay the same at the recent rises of the past 24-48 months… I have to ask the McCourts, “DO YOU FIND IT A LITTLE WEIRD?”

Happy Camelback Day!

I believe the payroll for the Dodgers was 7th in MLB. Considering that Andre, James, Matt and Russell all made under $1M, I think Frank made out like a bandit last year. In fact, I don’t think any of the 4 mentioned players made $500,000.

cy ~ I would never have the time or money to have season tickets for ST, so I was refrencing a couple of games @ $90, but for season tickets it would be a heck of a lot more for the tickets right behind home plate.
Which ownership in MLB, NFL, or NBA doesn’t try to mazimize revenues by charging what the market will bare? Do the Lakers and Clippers have reasonable prices for courtside seats? The Jazz don’t. They are almost $1000 a seat in Utah!!!! No Beverly Hills here. Do the Kings and Ducks have reasonable prices for their rink side seats? If the prices are too high at Dodger Stadium the attendance would have gone down dramatically, at least my memory of supply and demand says so. If McRanch tickets are priced too high and the market won’t pay the prices, then the seller will have to adjust his or her prices. If a comparable player to Ethier is making closer to $3.75M than $2.65M, then Andre will get $3.75M. If there is someone out there who will buy the Dodgers and sell great tickets at prices which are reasonable to me, then I hope the McCourts sell today. For my wife and I, we almost always buy the infield reserve. Those seats are good seats in our price range. If we lived in SoCal and went to more than 3 games, we would buy the upper deck tickets most of the time. But I can’t find any team which sells great seats for a reasonable price.

The Dodgers’ payroll was the same as the Cubs and $20M less than the Mets. The Cubs own 50% of their cable network and the Mets own 100% of their cable network. Those network profits are not included in the accounting of revenue for the baseball side of the business. Until there is a Dodgers Network we will always be behind those two teams. Only the Tigers spent dramatically more than the Dodgers last year without owning their own network. That’s how the Yankees can lose millions on the baseball side, but hide the massive dollars they make with their YES Network.

Dish – It is perfect that your examples are of regular season ticket prices. The Dodgers are doing this for ST, not the regular season. Yes, I realize other leagues play their preseason games in their normal locations, but every year you hear those teams fans complain about the price of preseason games being the same as regular season games and why can’t the structure be similar to baseball (probably the only time you hear fans from other sports leagues wanting a baseball-type model). I realize the prices are what they are at Dodger Stadium, but this is not Dodger Stadium nor is it Dodgertown; it is McRanch. As soon as the Dodgers start to play regular season games there, then I’ll stop banging on them for charging regular season-type prices (for goodness sakes, they even have a premium game charge for some games…that must mean that the visiting team is going to bring players that will at least be in AAA instead of A or AA).

The Cubs and Giants have Premium Prices for ST, but the Angels and Padres do not.

Frank has no one to blame for the albatross contracts of Pierre, Schmidt and Jones but himself. He had to sign off on them, which just proves that he’s no more of a baseball man than the idiot Ned who brung ‘em in.

Nobody then (except maybe the Giants) and nobody now wants Pierre, but Ned signed him to an ill advised 5 year $44 mil contract. Eveyone knew he was a one-dimensional player, but Frank didn’t say no. THEY KNEW Schmidt had a bum shoulder and signed him anyway to a $47M contract. Frank beamed – look what I got for you. And could anyone but Frank and Furter have taken a look at Jones’ physical condition (or lack thereof) and still signed him to $36M contract, even when no one else wanted him?

Whether Frank’s intentions are good or just all PR the fact remains that from a baseball standpoint, he’s ill equipped to own a major league franchise.

Right or wrong my perception of the McCourts is that they appear to be all photo op and status symbols. They’ve got side-by-side homes in Holmby Hills, one a 8385 sq. ft. ($6.5M), and the other an 11,637 sq. ft home they paid $25M for. They bought Courtney Cox’s beachfront Malibu home for another $33.5M and the one next door (for another $16M I presume since a $49M figure was bandied about for both.)
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http://www.bergproperties.com/blog/dodgers-owners-frank-and-jamie-mccourt-reportedly-purchase-courteney-coxs-beachfront-mansion-in-malibu-calif/

Now granted, 1. They have other business interests outside the D’s, and 2. I don’t begrudge any business owner spending the money they earn on themselves, but somebody’s gotta pay for it, and that somebody’s the fans. They’re paying for it both in the stands with inflated prices, and on the field because Frank doesn’t know what he’s doing.

But what pushed me over the edge was their hypocracy. Trying to lay guilt on the fans by asking if they’d rather have 50 ballfields for underpriveledged kids or Manny. Saying that a number, $30M is a little weird when you’re in the midst of spending $49 on Malibu property. Writing into contracts that a player MUST donate a certain amount to THEIR charity. Saying you’re trying to build from within, then treat probably the most class act in decades to wear the blue on and off the field, like a red-headed step child…

That’s why I’ll root for the players as I always do, but upper management can go to a very hot place.

Sorry for the long rant.

Her comments regarding Manny’s salary were horrific; there is no doubt about that. But the way they conduct their business is no different than any other major league owner from what I have seen.

I believe when the votes were cast Manny won over the ball fields.

Why not build some fields for the youth rather than buy a second Malabu home? Those were terrible comments.

dishguy ~ they love to lay a guilt trip on the fans. But, the dodgers fans are pretty smart and know their baseball.

bpb ~ I don’t mind your rant at all……I did my share yesterday and early this morning. I figure, it’s much better to get out my frustrations here on ITD than take them out on my husband!!! It comes to the point when we feel like saying, “We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take it any more”.!

I dont believe that L.A.’s power couple, cares anything about the majority of the Dodgerfans. Given the opportunity they would replace today’s fans with something a little more to thier liking. I find it hard to take them at thier word.
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to L.A. in 2009!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dishguy, I like you…you have solid arguments..It reminds me of myself last year defending Torre or Juanpy in ST…Not that I want Jaun, but that is a whole other argument that I do not want to open back up….Ethier is the man…Sign Manny…

The only way to get McRanchs attention is to not to go to ST, but I have a feeling THERE WILL BE A TON OF PEOPLE at McRanch….

BPB, I also agree with your argument, very good points!!!!

Tough to really compare the other three major sports ticket prices to baseball’s 1:1 because of the difference in venue size and amount of home dates. Basketball and hockey play half as many games in an arena that’s usually about 2½ to 3 times smaller than a baseball stadium, and football’s got a 1¾ times size stadium, but only play 8 home games.

Primo front row field level at DS are about $250, which if you calculate given the difference in size and schedule would compare to about $1250 in basketball. I’d surmize its all relative between the four sports given the variables.

With the TV rights, I’d speculate that either (A) Frank wasn’t smart enough to obtain those with the purchase of the team, or more likely (B) he was already so leveraged and still couldn’t meet the price that he allowed Fox to keep those in lieu of several more million dollars he couldn’t come up with.

I agree ram, I like dishguys arguments. Makes you re-examine your position(s) and gets you to think.

where is Nelly and Dodgereric today? Hmmm, people are going to start talking…LOL..I miss their commentary!!!

bpb ~ The fact Frank had to borrow so much in buying the Dodgers is the most troubling part of their ownership. I don’t remember, were there other groups willing to pay a similar price with less leveraging?
I think I read where their current deal with Fox is up in 4 years and they hope to launch their won network then…I have no idea where I read that though.

red pen–own for won

What’s even more amazing to me is that the McCourts are so image conscious but they still can’t figure out what to say and not to say to the fans. Jaime just shouldn’t talk where any reporters are present; she is forever having to explain her comments because she just plain doesn’t get it. And Frank, if he would get out in front of his mistakes as often as he does his (the Dodgers) successes, he might actually have a chance. However, he hates criticism so much that he never takes any accountability for any of the messes (is that even a word) he causes. What these two need is a PR person for their personal interests and a PR person for their baseball interests and make sure they work together. Whoever advises them on what subjects to tackle in the area of baseball is failing miserably.

Thanks for allowing me to have a different viewpoint without calling me terrible names. I really appreciate all the nice people here at ITD. We all want the same thing…a cmpetitive team, the traditions (the colors and uniforms for me) maintained, and a World Series Championship as soon as possible. Go Dodgers!!!

ramslover ~ JuneDarlin and Ward are at a luncheon with his wife and son and her daughter. :)

Think I’ve heard similar on the TV rights dish.

I think the McCourts would go a long way in restoring their credibility with the fans if they just came out and said, ” We’re taking this season and next to build a team from withing the organization. One you can be proud of, watch grow and call your own like in the hey-dey of Garvey-Lopes-Russell-Cey. The money we’re saving now will be used to retain many of these players throughout their careers. We will probably go through some rough stretches here and there, but when we come out the other side, they’ll truely be the Los Angeles Dodgers once again.”

No more false expectations of bringing in premier FAs. No more trying to put lipstick on a pig with PVLs. Just a good honest plan to stick to for the duration of his tenure. I don’t think there’s anyone one here that wouldn’t respect that and back it.

Boy do I need to proofread before I post…

bpb ~ you are right! if they would come out and say that, it be be okay. But, they don’t know what the hell they are doing.

bpb ~ I agree. I am hoping they have learned their lessons regarding longterm contracts for FA’s from outside the Dodgers system. I’m hoping that is one of the reasons they haven’t caved into Boras’ 4 year demand. I would still like to add Manny for one or two years though; even if it costs $25m for one or $45M for two. His cache with the fans would probably cover at least half of his salary and it would give us a bridge to Lambo or another OF prospect. If they cave in and give a 3 or 4 year deal to Manny without adding a trade clause so we could trade him to an AL team, I will be irate. Just like I was with the Pierre and Jones signings. For full disclosure, I was for the Schmidt signing…sorry:(

Best PR in the world is to just be honest with people.
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Unless of course you’re a politician.

TRU, thanks for the update, I was a little worried about them…

Politicians and baseball team owners have a lot in common.

BPB, proof reading is for the professionals…sometimes I look back and think, well that was poor English, but as long as I can read the post and know what you are thinking, that is good enough for me….

nellyjune took her computer with her………..I’m sure she will be on with us later. I can’t imagine her being away from ITD more than a day without going through withdrawl. :)

I agree dish. Manny being Manny for a year or two is OK, but Manny blocking Lambo for two years isn’t. In Schmidt’s case (and Andruw too), had any of us known in fact he had an injured shoulder like NedCo did (and had seen for ourselves the condition of Andruw), I doubt any of us would’ve wanted either of them. We all thought that both were healthy and ready to go. No matter pro or con on either of them, the fans got snookered because we didn’t have all the facts to begin with.

BTW, we get a little fiesty on here once in awhile, but whenever anyone gets out of line with a pointed personal comment, the rest of us have your back whether they’ve been agreeing with you or not. Doesn’t happen very often though.

As far as I can tell, we have two main unwritten rules on ITD:
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1. No blatant personal attacks.
2. Frank, Ned, Joe and JP don’t count.

LOL!!!

But Ram, I used to proofread for a typesetter…

LMAO!!!!
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dishguy will find out what you are talking about, bpb, when the season starts.

Rules are for the Dodger Thoughts blog.

I think we violate at least half of theirs daily…

Good debate helps one think. I always like seeing the opposing point of view. It may not change my mind, but it does help me determine whether or not I believe my points are valid or not.

Hit Submit by mistake…

That being said, I am still going to hammer the McCourts until they sell the team, get their act together or I die. I’m pretty young, but I think the 3rd option has the best chance of happening:)

cy ~ agreed. Thanks for today’s conversation. I don’t know any diehard Dodgers fans personally, so it is fun just to talk to reasonable and passionate Dodger fans.

I should’ve said the best chance of happening first…

Sports debates are the best!!!

That picture you discribed, Josh, seems familiar, but I’m not sure, is there any chance of displaying it?

If Conte examined him that means next week he’s day-to-day, followed the next week by he’s had a setback, followed by he’s having surgery and will be out the remainder of the season.

Really, of all the guys the Dodgers could ill afford to lose for any length of time, Marty’s #1 on the list.

Good afternoon ITD
Nice discussion going on. As everyone knows by now, I am excited about Camelback since it is much closer to California. I could never think about going all the way to Florida, too far. I decided one day that I wanted to go to the first ST in their new locale. I bought a plane ticket for a very good price, found a place to stay that isn’t the Hilton but has a continental breakfast in the morning which will hold me until the game. I bought pretty good tickets thinking that I am not going all the way to Arizona and not have good seats.
I try not to say anything negative about the Dodgers, the players, the owners, coaches or managers. I am one fan who really does bleed blue. I know there were mistakes made in the acquisitions in the past but no one can foresee the future. We always hope that we have done the right thing. That is even true in life. Who would have thought that as hopeless as it seemed after the all star break, the Dodgers would come out on top winning the Western Division? Who knew that Manny would be the sparkplug to bring the best out of Loney and Andre? I know that if Manny does get signed, he will be the Manny of last season. That was no act. He and the rest of the team had a great rapport. You could see it on the field. And Manny loves the fans. He always waved to us. He always looked happy. I did have one nice encounter with him when he signed a ball for my Dad. He was in a hurry but he came back and signed it with a big smile. I’ll always remember that.
I won’t argue that the ticket prices are high but at least there are different prices for what you can afford. I bought field tickets but saved all year for them. My friend sits in the left field pavilion which is $8 a seat or $6 for a season seat and loves it. He would never sit anywhere else. I used to only watch the games on tv and I don’t even have cable. The games that weren’t televised, I listened to on the radio. You pretty much enjoy the Dodgers anyway you can afford. I can’t say anything about the McCourts, I don’t know what their financial situation is. I’m sure they have some sort of adviser to help them. Who knows how this turn in economy is affecting them. I’m lucky that it hasn’t really affected me yet. I always keep my fingers crossed.
All I can say is I love the Dodgers and will always support them. I can’t wait to watch my first ST game and for the season to officially start. Go DODGERS!!!!

Wow, sorry for that long post. Hi Nellyjune, I hope you enjoyed your day. Hi Dodger4life, we are definitely thinking alike. Cpompe1, I hope you are feeling well. Hi Trublu. Hope everyone has a great evening!!! And Happy Valentines Day.

Hello heartruss, That was a very good post, well done. I am very happy that you are going to spring training, and good for you on the seats. have a wonderful time and …..
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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THE QUEST FOR # 7 STARTS HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to L.A. in 2009!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

heartruss ~ I hope you have a great time at ST. The funnest part for me would be to walk around and watch the workouts. Go Dodgers!!!

Boy!!! You leave ITD for a few hours or so, and rumors start flying – LOL!!!! (jk)

ramslover – thanks for caring, and you asked who that Andre guy is. Well, let me tell you. His name is Andre Ethier, he is #16, and he plays right field for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Andre is 6’2″, weighs about 210 lbs, and he will be 27 on April 10th. The only “so-called” bad month he had last season was in June, and yes, he may have tore it up when Manny was in town for August and September, but other than June, he had a fabulous season last year. Manny certainly didn’t have any affect on his 11 assists in the outfield. Once again, this is only on the field stuff. We can go on for days how well he represents the Dodgers off the field as well, but I think you got the drift. So, who is Andre? IMO, Andre is a player for the Los Angeles Dodgers who is currently getting screwed by their management for a lousy million dollars, which most of us know, is probably only $500,000.

Nice article on Schmidt there still hope for the guy.

As for my day, without going into too many details, I just feel very honored to be a witness to what I saw today. To be a guest and see this Eagle Scout Court of Honor for Matt, dodgereric’s son, was nothing short of amazing, remarkable and heartfelt. As a teacher of young children, you can only hope some grow up to have the passion that Matt has for the things he has accomplished on this journey so far. In addition to the beautiful ceremony, I had the accidental priviledge of sitting next to Eric’s mom and one of his dearest friends. I say accidental because my daughter and I sat at an empty table, which later filled with these wonderful people. So, in a nutshell, this day was awesome!!!

nelly–having a father who has devoted the vast majority of his 90-plus years to the Scouting program, I know what’s involved in the accomplishment of becoming an Eagle Scout. Congratulations to Mark and I’m glad that you were there to be a part of such a special event in his life.
For the first time in 2 years, Schmidt is completely healthy and that is a great start. While we will probably never again see the pitcher we paid for, It would be huge if he could be a reasonable facsimile of the old Schmidt and take ownership of the 5th spot in the rotation.

VERY LARGE RED PEN!!!!!!!!—Congratulations, Matt.

Good Evening Brownpaperrapper!!! It was pretty special, and I could have written pages, but I am sure Eric will want to share as well, seeing how it was his family’s day.

That is great to hear about Schmidt. Like you said, he probably won’t be the Schmidt we signed up for, but it will be excited to see what he can do.

red pen – “exciting” not “excited”

I just found out my son “chose” #16 for his varsity number. How cool is that!!! However, the only catch is his highschool colors just happen to be…………………..yes, orange and black :(

Well……..I guess you can’t have everything!!!!!

Personally, I would have taken a different number in exchange for any other color than orange and black. I don’t know why I complain about the colors now. I wore those same colors in highschool, but I wasn’t bleeding Dodger blue back then either. I had to actually buy black and orange baseball shirts to wear to the games, which was very painful. However, I have compromised. I told him I will wear the black and orange shirts as long as I can wear my white LA Dodger hat. So, at least there is no assuming I have switched sides :)

A white Dodger hat with black and orange shirts. Like a woman here who wore a jacket made up of half BYU and half Utah colors to the annual rivalry football game this season. Schizophrenic Fashions, LTD.

Well you can have him played to my old school in Rialto when are color are blue, white and silver might be a prefect fit lol. I already know one person that graduate from my high school in 2000 and now playing in the dback organization while being draft by the Nats. He also was a teammate of Ricky Nolasco.

His name is Josh Whitesell so glad to see someone from my high school represent.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josh_Whitesell

That reminds me of the cap I have that’s half each Gnat and A’s colors left over from the 1989 earthquake WS.

…well, it’s better than a blue Dodger hat, yes? It’s a white Dodger visor with a silver “LA” – white is part of the t-shirt’s color too. It should look fine. However, all last year I wore my Dodger blue on days they had games at the same time. I will have to see when the time comes if I can actual handle wearing the orange and black at all once April 6th rolls around – LOL!!

Better get your shots, nelly, so you don’t catch anything!!! LOL!!!!

Nelly, that is awesome you got to be there with Dodgereric and his son for that grand occasion…and thanks for bringing me up to date on this Andre dude…sounds like quite an guy….

Well I hope everyone had a great Valentines day…I am off to watch a movie with my beautiful wife and Valentine…Good night all!!!!!

brownpaperrapper – I take my shots everyday!!! LOL!!!

ramslover – Have a wonderful evening with your Valentine.

Good night, everyone. Have a wonderful Sunday!!

Good Night brownpaperrapper!!!!
You have a fabulous Sunday as well :)

Where is our spirit leader, Dodger4life?

It was great seeing those pictures of the first day of Spring Training. Can’t wait until Wednesday when they are all back.

Hell of a day, wasn’t it?

It certainly was :) How are you and Chris doing?

Hey Nelly, Good to see you…..
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I am alway’s around except when Nascar is on!!!
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Then the sound of the engines rumbling and the cars going bye have me napping peacefully. I usually manage to arise right before the end too. I think I listen to the race sub consciously while resting my eye’s.
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to L.A. in 2009!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, we are ready for Daytona tomorrow?

dodgereric – It was awe~inspiring to say the least.

Matt Kemp is on ESPN hoping Manny will be back :)

I hope so Nelly the next Daytona 500 is 364 days away if I miss this one :-)

Chris has crashed for the evening, I’m trying desperately to get my spreadsheets ready for the race. It’s mind-numbing work, but once it’s done it’s relatively pain-free.

I’m so ready for boogedy, boogedy, boogedy! Did you see what happened to poor Tony Stewart?

Regarding today, I’m not sure I have the words yet but I’ll try.

I did see what happened to Tony – not a happy camper and I don’t blame him one bit.

You speechless – now that is funny!! (jk) I really do understand. Matt is remarkable ~ he really is :)

Eric good to see ya. I am happy that you and Matt acomplished your goal. Way to go to the both of you.
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Nelly ~ Eric ~ ITD, Dodgerfaithful….
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God Bless The U.S.A. and God Bless us all!!!
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Good Night :-)
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GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They keep showing Ryan’s wreck over and over.

Dodger4life – so do you just sleep through the Nationwide race, or do you sleep through Sprint Cup too?

I try to stay awake Nelly, it just depends on the way the race goes. I only missed one ending last year though.

Good Night Dodger4life – Have a great Sunday with your daughter!!! Take Care and God Bless :)

The culmination of something that has the potential of such importance to his future is very gratifying. But, even if having the Eagle badge proves to be insignificant for him (which I don’t believe), the entire experience in Scouting has already shown itself to have affected him in a most positive way. You heard him. He’s remarkably well-adjusted for an adult, let alone someone who’s still short of his 17th birthday. When I was that age, I was a basket case.

It was great for his grandparents and uncles and aunts and his cousins to see for themselves how important Scouting has been for him. They’ve always heard it, of course. But as I spoke to a few of them after the ceremony, they were quite surprised and impressed, not only with Matt, but our Troop. Scouting is a great idea, the way it teaches the values it does. But without the proper leadership, it can never do what it aims to do. Like many organizations, it succeeds or fails from the top down (sound familiar?) Our Scoutmaster sets a very high standard and everyone responds positively to it. I wanted to thank him (and his wife, who does a lot more than most people realize) while I was speaking, but I didn’t feel it was my place to thank people. That was Matt’s job today, and he did a good job for someone who forgot his notes. :-)

Before he entered Scouting, he was a follower. No more. He constantly takes charge. He’s very sure of himself in most of the really important things. I like his chances.

Eric – Matt was very impressive, notes or not, and he wasn’t just impressive to me. Like you said, his chances are very good :)

Yeah, he’s pretty well-liked in the troop. He’s never given any Scoutmaster any trouble, always showing them the proper respect. The patrol who did the color guard was “his” patrol, the Hawks. He was their Troop Guide and they just love him.

There are others who are better Scouts – more merit badges, etc. But there are no better human beings.

Now I’m gushing. Sorry.

The Dodgers are still in neutral with the two big questions of spring, aren’t they.

Yes, they are very big questions now. Andre seems to be going to arbitration for sure at this point, and who knows what is happening with LF at the moment.

You should be gushing!!! You should have every right to be :)

We’ve beaten both of those issues to death, but doggone it, it gets me upset that Boras hasn’t counter-offered once. At least publicly. The Dodgers have, in effect, made 3 offers now and Boras still only one. It’s not like he has much leverage. The only other team ‘interested’ has been just as adamant about not going to a long term. Boras is acting as if the Dodgers have no choice but to sign Manny.

It wouldn’t be a great PR move to lose him, but I think they’d be stupider (it’s not a word, but it works for me here) if they were to make a 4th offer before Boras moves.

Yes, it seems our ITD friends have covered those two topics, along with McRanch very well in our absence. There really isn’t much to add other than ramslover seems to have a case of amnesia when it comes to that #16 guy – LOL!!!! I keep having to explain it to him……and Oh, if you didn’t notice, we were quite missed today :)

Yeah, I did notice that. But I think something else went over my head. Were you talking about a certain volleyball player back at 12:18?

LOL!!! Technically no, I was talking about the daytime hours. She was very impressed by the end of breakfast, but she was pretty much mesmorized by the time he finished his speech. It’s nothing like walking through a mall while your daughter is blushing from texts she is getting from a certain somebody.

Let’s just put it this way…..she was so nervous, she was making me nervous and we never ended up eating dinner. Well, she had dinner I guess – LOL!!! (jk) I did end up going out and getting something.

It was all good, Michael and Bill went out to dinner after celebrating his officially making the varsity team and “choosing” number 16. I am sure there is a catch somewhere down the road in choosing this particular number, but I guess I will have to wait until the idea is presented to me.

I thought she came across very well. She definitely has a mind of her own! Matt has complained lately that all of the girls at his school are empty-headed ‘valley girls’. Mariya isn’t much like THAT! LOL! Especially with that football mentality she talked about during breakfast! LOL!!

LOL!!! Very true ~ She definitely will tell you how she is feeling if asked. Like you and Chris to Matt, Mariya’s dad and I are very proud of her. She (and Michael for that matter) could have used their past as an excuse, but they didn’t, and I know we had something to do with their choosing the right paths to take, but they had to make the ultimate decisions in the long run. For what they have been through at such early ages in their lives, they are turning out to be very productive and well-adjusted teenagers, and like you said, I like their chances as well.

Well, my brain is fried from this spreadsheet. One more team to go, but it’s going to have to be tomor …… later today. It’s church for us in 7 hours, a quick breakfast and settling in front of the TV for about 4 hours. Then my mom is coming for leftover rice, chicken and chocolate cake! LOL!!! And I’m trying to talk everyone into a Star Wars day on Monday.

May God Bless you and Mariya with your travels to the desert and back home. It was a remarkable day and you two made it more special by honoring us by coming! Thank you!

Well, I am not sure what the conversation was all about tonight, but whatever was said, it made her birthday/Valentine’s Day pretty special. I think our friendship just created another friendship. Did you and Chris end up going out to dinner?

Congratulations eric for having an accomplished and responsible son!!!

Good Night Eric!!! You are most very welcome. It was an honor to be there. Have a fantastic Sunday with your wonderful family. Have fun watching the race. My goal is to be in front of a tv to at least watch the end somehow. Take Care and God Bless :)

Just catching up on the reading this morning. BTW, it much easier to logging on at 6:25 mountain time.

Anyway, congratulations to you and your son Eric! and a hearty, job well done!!

I’d take a moderately effective Schmidt in the 5 spot. Gotta be better than Vargas and Estes.

Good morning ITD,
Congratulations to you Dodgereric and your wonderful son. I know he has a very bright future. I know you are very proud of him.
And Nellyjune, you have much to be proud of with your amazing son and daughter!
I feel so blessed to have such inspirational friends. And this being Sunday!!
Russell hurt his foot last week doing some exercises and I am happy that there is not a fracture.
Everything is good. My son will be visiting this coming week for a few days. He will be coming to California for good weather (the rain will not dampen his spirits) since it is about 40 degrees where he lives.
I am excited about my new blogs. I know I keep mentioning it but I don’t want any of ITD to miss it.
Feel free to post on either. A couple of bloggers posted already on my mlb blog. Here are the addresses in case anyone missed it: http://catlovesthedodgers.blogspot.com and http://catlovesthedodgers.mlblogs.com

Good morning bpb and heartruss ~ here’s wishing Andre the best in his arbitration hearing. I’m pulling for you Dre to get the raise I know you deserve.

Good morning trublue, finished with how many cups of coffee??? We will pray for Dre on Tuesday.

Trublue, it is just too bad that Andre seems to have to fight for everything, nothing comes easily for him. That is supposed to build character!!! OK enough already.

I just finished my 3rd cup and you are right about Dre having to fight for everything.

GOOD MORNING ITD, DODGERFAITHFUL!!!
.

Pay dre……….pay dre,pay
pay dre……..pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre…pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre……pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre………pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre………pay dre
pay dre…..pay dre………pay dre
pay dre…….pay dre…….pay dre
pay dre……….pay dre.pay dre
.
.
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WE LOVE OUR DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
365 DAYS A YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
7 DAYS A WEEK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
24 HOURS A DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
EVERY DAY IN DODGER BLUE IS A GREAT DAY!!!!!!!!!
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Bring the Ring to LA in 2009!!!!!
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It is a beautiful day again. Enjoy everybody…. :-)

New thread.

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