Valley days

Congrats to fellow blogger and Dodger friend Alyssa Milano on her recent nuptials.

As for tonight, should be interesting starting Garland for us instead of facing him. Any of you Valley folks know that he went to Kennedy High and Randy Wolf went to El Camino. We’re filling out a roster of Valley boys and let’s hope Jon can be as consistent as Randy has been this season.

Here’s tonight’s lineup:

Furcal, SS

Kemp, CF

Ethier, RF

Manny, LF

Blake, 3B

Loney, 1B

Belliard, 2B

Martin, C

Garland, P


  1. Dodger4life

    ROCK US BABY!!!!!!!!
    BRING THE RING TO L.A. IN 2009!!!!!!
    RALLY TIME!!!!!!! EARLY and OFTEN!!!!!!!!

  2. boblee4014

    Someone explain to me why a team with the talent the Dodgers have manage to only score 1 or 2 runs and never can get hits with runners in scoring position. I’ve decided to find other things to do (like sleep) when the games come on late in St. Louis and until the Team decides to use their talent and start knocking the crao out of the ball that’s where I’ll be each evening. My son purchased 3 fantastic books on the Dodgers of old and I’ll be engrossed in those each evening.


    bob, to be perfectly fair, this has been a problem for the Dodgers for a long time prior to this season. Obviously if anyone knew why this problem exists or how to solve it we would not be talking about it. I am sure the Dodgers are not the only team with this problem but it sure makes winning a championship all that more difficult. The Dodgers of old had the best minor league system and knew how to develope players. I may be stretching things a bit but I am going to go out on a limb and say the decline of the Dodgers started when Al Campanis was forced out after that unfortunate Nightline incident some time ago. He was a brilliant baseball executive.

  4. northstateblues

    Lbirken, from what I’ve read on the matter, I agree with you. The Campanis mishap was the beginning of the end for the Dodger Way. The other blow happening by way of a Great Moment in Dodger history. Kirk Gibson’s home run in the ’88 series validated Free Agency as the prime way to win championships to Fred Claire… a way that has provided 2 decades of fruitless postseasons.

    Development takes a back seat to wheeling and dealing, and I admit, I cringe every time I see the current payroll, compared to what we “should” be spending, but really, (and this is an honest question, maybe someone can give me an honest answer, after all, I don’t remember all the details of the business side of the O’Malley years), did the O’Malleys spend top tier for Free Agents between ’71 and Kirk Gibson? And in agreement with DodgerEric’s sentiment the last time I brought this question up, I wouldn’t trade the Gibson memory for anything.

    If we spend money, we should be spending it on the talent we have, locking them in for longer contracts. If we spend a lot of money on a “sure thing” ace, that’s good too, but hope they pan out more like Derek Lowe, and less like Kevin Brown.

    I understand the McCourts want to bring back what they feel is Dodgers Tradition, and I applaud that sentiment.
    But the Dodger Way was “better a year early than a year late”, not “better a decade early than a year paid too much… then we can buy them for cheap in 10 years when they’re worn down by time”.


    Interesting reflection on Billz, jpd – do you think he’s spending too much time with Wolf, and it’s rubbing off on him.

  6. enchantedbeaver

    For as long as I can remember I’ve always said to pitch a shutout against the Dodgers, all you have to do is walk the bases loaded to start every inning.

    But hey, the Rox lost so let’s get that game back tonight.

  7. enchantedbeaver

    As far as Billz goes, I think he’ll settle into a #2 or even a #3 role – occasional brilliance with a flash of mediocrity now and then. He just doesn’t have the mental make-up to be an ace.

  8. enchantedbeaver

    To me Bear, Billz just doesn’t have the cajones to take his God given talent and come up and in with it once in awhile. He also seems to have lapses in conciousness where he forgets how to pitch from one inning to the next – has like a brain fart or something. Most telling though was last playoffs when he let the other pitcher get away with knocking our boys around. No guts, no glory. Just a #3 with some hope of being a #2 on any given day.


    NSB, I am a huge Dodger fan from way back and I am proud of it but there is nothing really to be proud about the business side of any sport including baseball. If you read the good books about Dodger history you will see that the modern Dodger organization with which we are most familair pretty much began when Branch Rickey and Walter O’Malley built up the organization. Both of these men were shrewd and powerful and really good at what they did. Other organizations tried the same stuff but the Dodgers were just better at it with regard to developing players. Of course they did not have the free agency system and prior to free agency players were pretty much indentured servents with little control over their future. The Dodgers did have a “better a year early than a year late” philosophy with regard to players and there was no such thing as loyalty.

    Enter free agency and the Dodgers had to get into the game to stay competitive. You can bet your bottom dollar this made ownership quite uncomfortable. Can you imagine what that famous Dodger infield of the 70’s would command now in pay? Those guys were underpaid even for their time and in every case, they left the Dodgers because the Dodgers wanted them to leave. The exception is Bill Russell, who was offered a coaching opportunity that had he not taken, he too would have been sent off somewhere. Think about it: other than due to injury, how many players can you name that spent their most productive years with the Dodgers (Brooklyn or L.A.) who retired as a Dodger on their own accord and not due to injury? I am sure this can be said of many organizations and not just the Dodgers.

    So did the Dodgers embrace free agency? I don’t think so but they had to eventually get into the game or risk falling way behind because the fans want winners every year. Unlike Giant fans who are happy just to beat the Dodgers because they have no real winning tradition, Dodger fans expect to challenge for a championship every year going into spring training. Have the Dodgers been successful with free agents? I think in general the answer is no but again, how successful have other ogranizations been besides the Yankees and Red Sox? Some of you remember Dave Goltz and Don Stanhouse? Sorry to bring up such painful memories. And Kevin Brown? What a joke of a contract he recieved.

    So to answer you question, NSB, O’Malley was quite interested in saving and/or making money. To be fair he was generous in other ways with players and did treat them well. There is no doubt in my mind one reason Peter O’Malley decided to sell the team was his belief he could not (or did not want to) compete in the free agent market he saw all around him. But I encourage you to read everything you can find, especially the books written by former players and you will get a great idea of their love of the game and what they had to endure.

  10. sparkleplenty_1

    Looks like we got some help from the Mets and Phils today. GO DODGERS – let’s get Garland his first Dodger win and pick up a game in the standings.

  11. oldbrooklynfan

    Hi folks,
    Congrats to that guy that married Allysa, I didn’t get a chance to read that far down to his name, Oh congrats to her too.
    With the Rockies and Giants losing, that should relax everybody a little.
    I just hope if the Dodgers get a runner in “scoring position”, somebody makes him score.

  12. kpookiemon

    As long as we’re talking Dodgers recent history, I agree, Campanis was a brilliant executive. I mean, Reggie Smith for Joe Ferguson???? I watched that night he imploded on Nightline. Fred Claire hit the jackpot with Gibby, but then ran amok with other PVLs that failed: Eddie Murray, Straw, Kal Daniels, Eric Davis, etc. Then the Dodgers got back to the farm with the four consecutive rookies of the year starting in ’92 with Karros. But the real horror began with Fox buying the team (we all thought we’d hit a gold mine…HA!) and bringing in Malone and Davey Johnson and saying bye bye to Piazza. They seemed committed to the farm in recent years with the influx of all our favorite current kids, but a taste of success started the influx of PVLs again. And who are the current Dodgers succeeding right now? NOT the PVLs.

  13. shad80

    To bad Reynolds is an error prone player. I’d rather have him played SS and rest Furcal but Belliard is a terrible defender..

  14. nellyjune

    Good Evening ITD readers and writers!!!!!

    Garland is pitching welll, but we need more runs!!! Let’s Go Dodgers, Let’s Go!!!

  15. shad80

    hmmmmmmmm I would love for him to get the CG and rest the bullpen for the 2nd times this year the other time when Stults got the cg/shutout against the Giants but it just won’t happen. I would give him one more inning.

  16. oldbrooklynfan

    It’s been Colletti’s acquisitions that are doing the job tonight, so far.
    Now we have to hold’em and safe it.

  17. truebluewill

    Nice win!!! When Broxton throws strikes he’s so good. Great game for Garland. Hope he has more of these games in him.

  18. jhallwally

    Good Evening Gang!! Totally sweet win tonight!! Really needed this one. At least we split the series at home. Dropping 3 of 4 at home against a sub .500 team is not accetptable. Manny showing some signs of breaking out. We are going to need Manny and Ferk to start producing if we hope to go deep into the playoffs and beat the Cards or Phillies. I’m not sure what is wrong with Marty. Wouldn’t hurt if he got on a hot streak right now either. I’m not really worried about us making the playoffs, but I don’t think we will fare very well if Ferk and Manny don’t get it going. Nice job by Garland!

  19. nellyjune

    Good Evening jhall!!! It was a sweet win tonight, and like you said, a much needed one. It was good to see others get it done tonight compared to the usuals, but it would be nice if they all got in sync together for a change.

  20. jhallwally

    Hi’ya Nell’!!! Yep, we needed this one. We’re going to have to be hitting on all cylinders once we get into the playoffs to beat the Phillies or Cards.

  21. jhallwally

    Not to mention the fact that if we finish with the best record, we get home field advantage thru the playoffs. Could make a huge difference!!!!!

  22. jhallwally

    Nice job tonight Dodgers!!! Hope you all have a great night/evening!! Catch you all down the road.
    Excelsior True Believers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. oldbrooklynfan

    You can’t give a runner a stolen base on defensive indifference because the fielding team knows that he’s going, it just takes the force at second away.

  24. nellyjune

    That is very true jhall, very true indeed. It seems like we only have a few players each night that are on. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to see what the team can do when they are all hitting like they should. We know it’s in them, but when will we see it………………….hopefully someday very soon.

  25. shad80

    When the Diamondbacks got to Los Angeles to begin this seven-game trip, Garland was slated to face Dodgers’ knuckleballer Charlie Haeger(notes) in the series finale. But the 29-year-old right-hander switched teams during Monday night’s game with the deadline for eligibility in the postseason looming.

    “I think it was more uncomfortable because I was in that other dugout the first game and then came over,” Garland said. “I mean, if it would have been like a week or two weeks down the road, it would have been a little bit different. But the fact that it was in the same series, there was a little extra the first few innings.”

    Garland (9-11) gave up two runs and five hits over seven innings, including a solo homer by Stephen Drew(notes). The right-hander, coming off back-to-back wins against Houston—including a seven-inning scoreless stint last Saturday—has won three consecutive starts after going 1-9 with a 4.50 ERA over his previous 16 outings.

    No Dodgers outfielder made a putout the entire time Garland was out there. He struck out six, retired one batter on a line drive, two more on popups, and got 12 of his outs on ground balls—including double plays that ended the first and second innings.

    “Being able to go out there and give this team a good quality start, coming out of the game with the lead and ending up winning it, I couldn’t have asked for much more,” Garland said. “Once I finally calmed down and got my feet underneath me, the ball started moving a little bit more and I was getting more ground balls and we got off a nice little run.”

    It’s the first time Garland has won three straight starts since May 2007 with the White Sox, when he beat the Angels, Royals and Yankees.

    “It’s always a challenge, facing a guy that you’ve been close with all year,” Arizona third baseman Mark Reynolds(notes) said. “Gar’s a great guy. We wanted to go out there and lay something on him, but he pitched a great game and got a lot of ground-ball outs. We really couldn’t string anything together.

    “He’s seen us hit all year, so he knows our weaknesses and our strengths,” Reynolds added. “Facing us this soon, I’m sure he had a good game plan on what he wanted to do. After that shaky first inning or two, he settled down and was throwing his sinker and was able to get a lot of ground balls.”

    The only other time Garland pitched at Dodger Stadium was on June 3, when he allowed a run and four hits over six innings but gave up a sacrifice fly by Casey Blake(notes) after a triple by Matt Kemp(notes) and lost 1-0. The 10-year veteran was born in Valencia, Calif., and played his high school ball in nearby Granada Hills.

    “It was fun. I grew up coming to games here, and getting a chance to pitch for this team is definitely a dream come true,” Garland said. “It’s kind of awkward the way it happened—but nevertheless, it did—and I was able to throw a good one up. I didn’t leave too many tickets. I cut the phone off and told people if they want to come, they can pay for it and support the team.”

  26. shad80

    Thu Sep 03, 2009 4:33 pm EDT

    Vin Scully is baseball’s ‘chattiest’ play-by-play man
    By ‘Duk

    David Biderman either has an obsession with baseball announcers or a lot of time on his hands.

    Actually, there’s no doubt he has both.

    Biderman, a Wall Street Journal writer, listened to the first scoreless inning of each television broadcast last Friday and counted the number of words uttered by each play-by-play man. His goal was to get an idea — albeit through an admitted unscientific process — of baseball’s most verbose announcer.

    The winner, not surprisingly, was broadcasting legend Vin Scully, who called the Dodgers action at a rate of 143.51 words per minute. Given the lyrical way in which he speaks, he’s encouraged to use as many words as he wants.

    But since Scully works the booth by himself and is theoretically responsible for filling twice the airtime, he blew away the competition. The wordiest of the multi-man boothers was the Cardinals’ Dan McLaughlin at 109.93 words per minute.

    McLaughlin was then followed Washington’s Bob Carpenter (102.33), Cincinnati’s George Grande (102.06), Arizona’s Daron Sutton (100.36) and Kansas City’s Ryan Lefebvre (96.71).

    The quietest guys out there? San Francisco’s Duane Kuiper (55.44), San Diego’s Mark Neely (61.84), Toronto’s Jamie Campbell (62.66), Oakland’s Glen Kuiper (65) and Baltimore’s Gary Thorne (66.97).

    It’s an interesting list, but I’m really not sure how to make heads or tails of it. I will say that when I thought of my favorite announcers to hit on Extra Innings — mainly guys who use their words sparingly in order to let the color men do their job while letting the sounds of the game talk, too — they were all mostly located in the lower tier.

    Perhaps Biderman is onto something?

  27. dodgereric

    Vinnie can talk as much as he wants, I’ll never get tired of listening.

    Ever since we got Thome, I’ve been trying to think of another team that had 2 – 500 HR guys at the same time. And although I’ll freely admit that I haven’t read all the articles, I haven’t seen it anywhere. So I did my own research. Forgive me if you’ve seen this elsewhere. It took me longer than I thought, and I gotta get to bed.

    I first thought of Henry Aaron and Eddie Mathews, but Mathews didn’t hit his 500th until after leaving the Braves.

    Then I thought of Willie Mays and Willie McCovey, but McCovey didn’t get his 500th until ’78 when Mays had been long retired.

    There have been 3. Don’t scroll down if you want to guess for a minute…..

    The 2005 Baltimore Orioles had Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmiero.

    The 2008 Chicago White Sox had Ken Griffey Jr and Jim Thome.

    Now we join the club.

    Good night, all. And God Bless.

  28. shad80

    Colorado Rockies
    Pitchers IP H R ER BB SO HR PC-ST ERA
    J Marquis
    (L, 14-10) 5.0 9 5 5 2 2 0 84-47 3.75
    J Peralta 1.1 2 1 1 0 1 0 13-10 5.91
    R Flores 0.1 0 0 0 0 1 0 4-3 5.40
    J Rincon 0.1 0 0 0 1 0 0 10-5 6.75
    M Herges 1.0 3 1 1 0 0 0 25-17 3.37
    J Beimel 0.2 2 1 1 0 0 1 23-14 3.60
    J Fogg 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0 3-2 3.32
    Totals 9.0 16 8 8 3 4 1 162-98

  29. shad80

    Wonder if the Rockies would had tied it what would had happen? Well since the roster expand they probably had 3 to 4 extra relievers.

  30. shad80

    The Rockies attendance in a 3 games series with the Mets in Coors.

    26,190 (51.9% full) – % is based on regular season capacity
    26,276 (52.1% full) – % is based on regular season capacity
    22,566 (44.7% full) – % is based on regular season capacity

  31. shad80

    What does this tell me?

    6 Chicago Cubs 67 2,678,822 39,982 97.2 65 35,256 80.2 132 37,655 88.6

    7 NY Mets 66 2,584,151 39,153 93.2 68 31,849 72.3 134 35,447 82.3

    11 Colorado 65 2,093,172 32,202 63.8 68 30,351 68.3 133 31,256 66.0

  32. shad80

    Well the Mets fans have no chance in the WC and still outdrew the Rockies fans by a lot. They average around 32,202 and the 3 games series was under 30,000. If we had those totally in those 3 games than are % would be under 40%

  33. shad80

    Clayton Kershaw isn’t concerned with pitch counts
    The left-hander, usually limited to around 100 pitches a start by Dodgers Manager Joe Torre, wants to be know for going deep into games.

    Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw would prefer to be judged on when to come out of a game based solely on performance and not pitch count. (Alex Gallardo / Los Angeles Times / August 19, 2009)
    September 4, 2009

    Clayton Kershaw says he understands why the Dodgers are monitoring how many pitches he throws, that he even appreciates how Manager Joe Torre limits him to more or less 100 pitches every time he starts.

    But he doesn’t necessarily like it.

    “It’s nice to know that they’re trying to take care of my arm,” the 21-year-old Kershaw said. “At the same time, you never want to be taken out of a game.”

    Kershaw, who starts today in the opening game of a three-game series against San Diego, said he has given a lot of thought to the subject of pitch counts.

    He said he knows that pitchers get hurt more often these days, but that they also have longer careers.

    “I think everybody’s arm is different,” Kershaw said, adding that he thinks his prized left limb is the kind that can withstand the heaviest of workloads.

    Kershaw said he wanted to one day be known as a pitcher who gets replaced strictly based on his effectiveness, not on the number of pitches he has thrown — like Tim Lincecum or Matt Cain.

    “The reason people say they’re in the upper echelon is because they’re effective for so long,” he said. “That’s where I’m trying to get.”

    Fighting history

    The Dodgers’ bullpen has pitched 467 2/3 innings, the second-most in baseball. (San Diego ranks first with 476 1/3 innings.)

    In the previous 12 seasons, only one team that had a bullpen that ranked in the top 10 in the majors in innings pitched during the regular season played in the World Series — the 2007 Colorado Rockies, who were 10th with 528 2/3 innings.

    No World Series-winning team in that span ranked higher than 19th in that category and six of the 12 championship clubs ranked in the bottom five.

    But bullpen catcher Mike Borzello scoffed at the notion that the Dodgers’ heavy use of relievers would spell doom come October.

    Borzello said this team reminds him of the 1996 New York Yankees, for whom he was a bullpen catcher. Like these Dodgers, those Yankees didn’t have starters who routinely pitched deep into games.

    The Yankees’ bullpen that season ranked sixth in innings pitched and had a 4.10 earned-run average, 11th-best in baseball. The ’09 Dodgers have a 3.23 ERA that ranks first.

    Of course, there’s one major difference.

    “I had a little secret emerge,” Torre said, recalling the ’96 Yankees.

    That secret was Mariano Rivera, who often pitched two innings of middle relief.

  34. shad80

    I’m hoping we won’t even come closed to the Rockies bullpen number of 528 2/3 innings but I won’t hold my breath on it.

  35. trublu4ever

    Good Morning, ITDland ~ hope everybody has a great Friday and fantastic weekend. We really need to take care of business and sweep the Padres. I want to put the Rockies and Giants far away in our rear view mirror! GO DODGERS!!!!!

  36. shad80

    With all the talk earlier today about the Dodgers’ need for offense, its worth noting the Dodgers are 54-10 when scoring five runs or more this season,

    Ouch didn’t know that.

  37. shad80

    PHILADELPHIA — The Giants have changed venues, but not their dreadful luck.

    Having left Philadelphia, where they entered the series having lost 10 of their previous 14 games at Citizens Bank Park, the Giants will resume activity Friday at Milwaukee’s Miller Park, where they have dropped 14 of 18 games since the start of the 2006 season.

    Due to a scheduling quirk, the Giants will have visited the Brewers twice in three of the last four seasons by the time this weekend is over. They needed Ryan Sadowski’s six surprising shutout innings to help them avoid a sweep in their June 26-28 series at Milwaukee.

    Sadowski’s no longer with the club, but the Giants will have their new good-luck charm on the mound: Barry Zito, who’s 4-2 with a 1.92 ERA and a .225 opponents’ batting average in nine starts since the All-Star break. He has yet to allow more than three runs in any game during this span.

    Zito entered the season with an 0-3 record and a 10.05 ERA in three starts at Miller Park. But he broke that spell on June 27, allowing three runs in 5 2/3 innings while receiving no decision.

  38. shad80

    I like those numbers in Milwaukee’s and I mean to deleted were his team. Dang I hate when I type so fast and don’t proofread what I wrote.

  39. phan52

    Current winning percentage leaders in the NL:

    1. Dodgers .593
    2. Phillies .588
    3. Cardinals .585

    Where has the lead gone?

  40. kpookiemon

    phan, you’re back…what an extraordinary pleasure. See, the very first thing you have to say after a good night’s sleep is meant to needle and grate on people’s nerves. You still don’t get it, do you? If you want to talk baseball, fine. The Dodgers still have the best record in the National League, thanks to your post. Have a pleasant evening.


    Where has the lead gone? Up since it came down to 2 games a few short games ago. We all know the Dodgers got off to a great start and anyone who reads this blog on a regular basis would know that even while winning there has been a lot of criticism of the team’s overall performance during losses and wins. No one on this blog wrote any of the national articles calling the Dodgers the best team in baseball. We get it that the Dodgers have some stiff competition in order to win a championship but as memory serves me the past two Dodger World Series winners were most likely not the best team but played the best when it counted most. The same thing could happen this season. Yes, we get uncomfortable when the lead diminishes as any fan would but we all know and have agreed that the only lead that matters is at the end of the season. So we don’t need anyone reminding us how the team is doing.

  42. enchantedbeaver

    Or Birk one could simply attribute it to the Dodgers playing a majority of its games in the toughest division in the National League.


    Hi, phan! As long as you’re going to be with us regularly, some of us might like to know something about you.
    Where do you live?
    Do you get to see Phillies’ games frequently at the stadium?
    How long have you been a Phillies phan?

    I myself have been a Dodger fan for over 50 years with first exposure through home game TV broadcasts. I’ve actually personally seen the Dodgers against the Phillies more than against any other competition back when I attended college in Philadelphia. I believe back then the old stadium was called Scheib Park, and my best memories are from games matching Drysdale and Robin Roberts.

    If we come up against the Phils in the playoffs, it should be interesting, and may the best team win. There’s no doubt where our ITD bunch stands on that, nor I suppose where you’re coming from. I must say that I wish our management had secured Lee instead of letting your team add him; however, I think that in a short series all bets are off, and the hot team at the time usually wins. If we can all have a good discourse, I’m all for interacting with fans from other teams and other points of view.

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