June 2011

Do you ‘like’ Matt and Andre?

There’s just about one day left for you to help propel Matt Kemp or Andre Ethier into the starting lineup for the National League All-Star team and you can vote up to 25 times at dodgers.com and take part in the “Meet Matt” sweepstakes for a chance to meet the Dodger center fielder.

Even Matt and Andre are getting into the fun of voting…

Going to battle with Guerra

During his pregame media session today in Minnesota, Don Mattingly said that Javy Guerra has emerged as the guy who will likely get the ball late in the game, presumably in save situations. He’s done a great job since his arrival and with the news that Jonathan Broxton is going to be shut down for about three weeks, and with Kuo still getting back on track, that’s the route Donnie is planning to go.

As far as everything else that’s going on here over the last couple days, I’m certainly reading all of your comments and really do appreciate your thoughts and the sentiment is always passed along. There’s no doubt a lot happening but at the end of the day, everyone in the front office remains focused on trying to provide the best experience for the fans at every game.  The same goes for everyone here – at the highest levels to the game-day staff and of course, the players, who came out last night and put up a record-setting performance.

We truly do appreciate your support, through the good times and the tough ones.

Chat with Matt and ThinkCure today!

It’s a very busy day and weekend at Dodger Stadium…

The ThinkCure weekend is underway, with programming on Prime Ticket, KABC, KCAL, KLOS and in Stadium. For all the information, visit dodgers.com/thinkcure.

Then at 2 p.m. PT, @therealmattkemp will take your questions on Twitter. Follow him and @dodgers to see all that he has to say and he’ll answer questions that have the hashtag #AskKemp.

And of course, the Freeway Series starts at 7:10 p.m., with 1:10 games tomorrow and Sunday.

Hope you’ll make the Dodgers and ThinkCure part of your weekend plans.

Inside the Dodgers catches a home run

Many of you who read this on Inside the Dodgers (as opposed to Facebook) will recognize the man who caught Uribe’s home run last night. It’s FanSince53, Ron Cervenka and there’s even a slow motion replay of his grab.

Ron is a Dodger Stadium regular who was featured in Bluetopia and if you didn’t get a chance to see that flic a few years back, you should grab a copy at Dodger Stadium’s merchandise stores. It really shows how much this team means to its fans.

Nice grab, Ron!

 

How will you spend Father’s Day?

On behalf of everyone at the Dodger organization, we want to wish all the Dads out there a Happy Father’s Day.

If you’re coming out to the Stadium, bring your glove so you can play catch on the field with your father/son after the game. And check out the ceremonial first pitch from Tom Gordon to Dee Gordon and Tony Gwynn Sr. to Jr., plus snag a new BBQ Apron from Farmer John. 

If you’re not making it down here, tune in on KABC 790, KTNQ 1020 or on PRIME Ticket, where they’ve got lots of Father’s Day content in store throughout the game. You can hang out and watch with your kids or your Dad and make it a day to remember.

You can also watch Tony Gwynn Sr. talk about his son here and read about how Tom Gordon helped change Dee’s career path here.

And if you do nothing else for your Dad today, make sure you educate yourself on how to “keep Dad in the game” through the prostate cancer foundation. It’s supported by so many people – including Tommy Lasorda and our Dodger rep, Mat Kemp.  Early detection is so important and you can literally save your father’s life.

Q&A with Fernando, plus first look at his bobblehead

Fernando Valenzuela participated in yesterday’s 10th Annual Dodgers Dream Foundation Charity Golf Invitational at Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos Verdes. His foursome included representatives from MillerCoors, a Dodger partner. Valenzuela’s group got off to a fairly slow start on the front 9, only 3 under par. The breathtaking view on the course that overlooks the Pacific Ocean might have been a distraction to a couple men in the foursome who were playing Trump National for the first time. However, after a Morton’s catered lunch, the team caught fire and birdied 5 of the last 9 holes to finish 8 under for the round.

Below is a Q&A conducted while riding around the course with the legendary lefty:

How long have you been golfing?
A long time. About 20 years. I started in the late 80s. One of my first times, I went out with Rick Honeycutt in Atlantic City, New York. When I was still playing, I golfed mostly in the offseason.

You took to the game quickly. Any attempts to go pro?
(Laughs) No, but when I stopped playing (baseball) in 1997, for about 4 to 5 years, I played (golf) almost every day.

Did you ever play with other teammates? Who was the best golfer?
I played with many of my teammates like Bob Welch, Alejandro Peña and Orel Hershiser. Orel was the best.

Which PGA pro would you most like to golf with?
I played with Arnold Palmer once at the Bob Hope Classic. I played a round with Peter Jacobsen in the late 80s.

What is your favorite course?
Riviera in Pacific Palisades

What’s your favorite club in your bag?
My driver, but I can’t tell you what it is.

What was the best prize you’ve won at a golf tournament?
Three years ago here at the Dodgers Dream Foundation tournament, I won the prize at hole 15 and it was an autographed photo of myself. (Laughs)

Which course would you like to play that you haven’t already?
Pebble Beach

How many rounds of golf do you player per week?
About 2 rounds per week

What was the best game you’ve ever golfed?
I’ve had a few good games. I shot 74 at Riviera which is 3 over par there.

This season, the Dodgers celebrate the 30th anniversary of “Fernandomania” all season long in 2011. Valenzuela’s “Fernandomania” bobblehead giveaway is July 26 (vs. COL). Below is a first look at the bobblehead!

Tickets are available here or by calling 866-DODGERS.

Have you voted for Matt and Andre yet??

Hard to believe that Kemp and Ethier rank fifth and fourth in All-Star balloting despite the monstrous season Matt’s having and the impressive numbers Andre continues to put up.  Or perhaps even a write-in vote for Jamey Carroll, who has been tremendous this year and would undoubtedly relish a spot on the All-Star team.

Dodger fans have answered the call before and helped get several former Dodgers to the All-Star Game in the past and this year. We need your help again!

Remember, you can vote up to 25 times online and with our longest homestand of the year, hopefully we’ll get a strong push in-stadium, too!

This is getting offensive!

On the recently completed road trip, the Dodgers scored 61 runs and had 115 hits  in just 10 games. For the non-math majors out there, that’s 6.1 runs and 11.5 hits per game. Overall, the team hit .311 with a .370 OBP, which is hopefully a positive sign that they can start to turn this thing around while the pitching gets back on track at Dodger Stadium.

Jamey Carroll hit .500 on the trip (15-for-30), Matt Kemp batted .472 with 7 homers and 16 RBI and Aaron Miles hit .438 (14-for-32) with several clutch hits. And of course, James Loney hit a key grand slam yesterday.

Entering the road trip, the Dodgers had batted around in an inning four times and during the 10 games, they did it five times!

The longest homestand of the season starts tonight – three games each against the Reds, Astros, Tigers and Angels. As Vin always says, hope you’ll make your plans to be part of it!

Photo by Jon SooHoo

Independence Day at Dodger Stadium

There are only 24 hours left on arguably the best ticket offer of the year at Dodger Stadium – on July 4, you can catch a ballgame and the city’s best fireworks show for just $4 on the Reserve Level, $14 on Loge and $24 on the Field Level. That’s a $130 ticket for $24, a $110 ticket for $14 and a $45 ticket for $4, but the sale ends Monday morning at 9 a.m.

Oh, and you can watch the fireworks show from the outfield grass, as always.

For tickets, visit this link and use the promo code July4

We know a lot of people make their Independence Day weekend plans in advance, so this sale comes a few weeks before the actual game. Hope to see many of you at Dodger Stadium to celebrate on July 4.

Hoopin’ Dodgers

Another solid win for the Dodgers, who have taken seven of their last 11 games and tonight, look to win their fourth consecutive series for the first time in over a year. Of course, we aim to provide something a little different here at Inside the Dodgers, so we switch gears for a moment to basketball.

With the NBA Finals in full swing and Dee Gordon getting called up yesterday, it sparked a dugout conversation during Don Mattingly’s pregame interview about Dee’s athleticism on the court. He played primarily basketball until high school, when he finally started playing baseball. And it got me thinking – who would be the best basketball team made up of current or former Dodgers?

Of course, you’d have to include Sandy Koufax, who went to the University of Cincinnati on a basketball scholarship. And Matt Kemp, who had offers to play collegiately, who probably be your forward. Dee Gordon would be  a nice point guard and our center would have to be Mark Hendrickson, who was the tallest Dodger at 6-foot, 9-inches and also played in the NBA as a power forward. Perhaps Billy Ashley could fill that role for the Dodgers – he was a house, but I have no idea if he could hoop. I guess that’s my starting five, without much research.

Honorable mention as a sixth man goes to Double-A manager John Shoemaker, who never played in the bigs but was the captain of the Miami (OH) basketball team and was selected in the sixth round of the 1978 NBA draft by the Bulls. Stories of his shooting exploits on the court at Dodgertown in Vero Beach are legendary. And from what I hear, Donnie Baseball was actually a pretty good player growing up in Indiana.

Anyone know any good stories about Dodger players who could pass, shoot or dribble?

Just a fun little diversion from the everday stuff on ITD. As promised, I’m trying to post more often and this popped into my head yesterday watching Dee fly around the bases in his first big league start.

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