Local Baseball at Dodger Stadium

Later today at Dodger Stadium, Bishop Amat will play Palm Desert, followed by Riverside North vs. Anaheim Esperanza in the CIF championship games.

Then tomorrow at 2 p.m., it’s my alma mater, Chatsworth High, against San Fernando in the City Section championship game.

If you’re thirsting for some good local baseball, stop by and check out these games.

And while we’re on the subect of local baseball, you might not have heard yet of Cory Hahn but if you haven’t, you need to hear his story.  Cory, who went to Mater Dei and was a standout there, was injured during a game this February in his freshman season at Arizona State University. He is undergoing constant treatment and physical therapy, spending several hours every day in his quest to get better. Unfortunately, that kind of treatment is very expensive and the costs are mounting.

Mater Dei High School has established a fund to accept donations to help the Hahn family with the costs of treatment. All donation amounts go to Hahn’s medical expenses. You can click this link to make a donation.

All-Star balloting results

Just a few minutes ago, the first ballot results of All-Star voting came out and Andre Ethier ranks fourth among outfielders, while Matt Kemp is fifth in the National League. The latest can be found here.

Dodger fans support our players incredibly year after year when it comes to voting and now would be a great time to vote up to 25 times, if you haven’t already done so.

As for those of you who read this post on Inside the Dodgers (as opposed to the Dodgers’ facebook page, where this links), please forgive the delay in new posts last week. Been out of town for several days at a close friends’ wedding, which slowed down the posts but we should be back to normal again this week and in fact, I’ll be back out on the road this trip, where I look forward to meeting up with Jamie Ramsay, who runs Better off Red, the Reds’ version of Inside the Dodgers. He does a great job with the blog (better than us, these days!) so hopefully we’ll find a way to get all of you to chat with each other on both sites.

Photo by Associated Press

Lima Time

One year ago today, we came into the office to learn of the passing of Jose Lima, one of the most interesting people you could ever encounter. He was taken way too soon and will always be remembered by baseball fans around the world.

Please continue to keep his family in your thoughts and for those interested in reading the blog post from that day, you can do so here.

Photo by Associated Press

Statement from Owner Frank McCourt on behalf of the Dodgers

Dodger owner Frank McCourt made the following statement today regarding the arrest of a suspect in the attack on Bryan Stow.

“First and foremost, our thoughts today are with Bryan Stow and his family and we hope that this announcement brings them a small measure of relief in what has been an extremely difficult time in their lives.

On behalf of the Dodger organization and our fans, I want to extend our most sincere appreciation and ‘thank you’ to Chief Charlie Beck and the men and women of the Los Angeles Police Department.  From the outset, the Chief made an unwavering commitment to do everything possible to find and apprehend the suspects in the brutal and cowardly attack that took place against Mr. Stow on Opening Day. 

From that point forward, I gave my word to Chief Beck that he would have the full support of everyone at the Dodgers and we have worked in close partnership with the LAPD on this matter. We pledge our continued cooperation with law enforcement authorities during the prosecution phase that will ensue. 

The Dodgers are committed to providing our fans the safest sports venue in the United States – this is a commitment that we take very seriously.

Chief Beck, thank you for using every available LAPD resource to find and arrest this suspect, who will now be brought to justice.”

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck speaks as Dodger owner Frank McCourt looks on during a Dodger Stadium security news conference at Los Angeles Police Department headquarters on April 8, 2011

Andre Ethier’s big photo moment

Earlier this week, we had a meeting to talk about what we might be able to do to generate awareness of the $1 Dodger Dog Day at the Stadium on May 30. Shameless plug, I know. But as we discussed who might be the right people to get involved, Andre Ethier came to mind because of his love of food and his endorsement deal with Farmer John.

So, yesterday when Andre got to the park, we broke out a giant BBQ in the player’s parking lot, slapped a Father’s Day apron on Andre (another shamless plug for the 6/19 game) and let him grill up the baseball world’s most famous hot dog.

Little did we know that at the same time we were taking photos of this fun moment that Andre was making headlines for another photo that made the rounds on in the Internet but this one’s better anyway, so take a look. It’s Matt Guerrier eating his first Dodger Dog (Javy Guerra was also one who got his rookie initiation to the Dodger delicacy) and the photos are even better because it’s a getaway day, so the guys were all in their suits as they grubbed.

There should be a TV spot coming out of this event and for those interested, you can buy tickets to the $1 Dodger dog day you can buy tickets here and for those interested in Father’s Day (which includes catch on the field with your dad after the game), visit here.

Class, personified

The Hall of Fame released a statement this morning regarding one of their own, Harmon Killebrew. I can’t imagine what it must be like to pen something like this, but it certainly shows a level of class and dignity rarely seen in the world. In fact, few people ever get the opportunity to share a thought like this with so many and therefore, it was worth sharing with you all.

“It is with profound sadness that I share with you that my continued battle with esophageal cancer is coming to an end.  With the continued love and support of my wife, Nita, I have exhausted all options with respect to controlling this awful disease. My illness has progressed beyond my doctors’ expectation of cure.

I have spent the past decade of my life promoting hospice care and educating people on its benefits. I am very comfortable taking this next step and experiencing the compassionate care that hospice provides.

I am comforted by the fact that I am surrounded by my family and friends. I thank you for the outpouring of concern, prayers and encouragement that you have shown me. I look forward to spending my final days in comfort and peace with Nita by my side.”

Anyone who has grown up as a baseball fan has heard about Harmon Killebrew and anyone I’ve ever spoken to who knows him says he was the ultimate gentleman. The way he has handled the most difficult situation in his life certainly confirms that for anyone who has never met him.

All of us at the Dodgers wish him and his family the strength they’ll need in the coming days and weeks to deal with this very sad news.

Photo credit: AP

All-Star voting is underway – jump for joy

In case you’ve missed it, fans are now able to vote for the All-Star Game here and the Dodgers certainly have some worthy vote recipients. I believe the first batch of results will be coming back soon and I’d imagine that Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp will be among the top outfield vote getters, but it’s up to you guys to vote for your favorite Dodgers over the next few weeks.

As a kid, my brother and I would wander around the Dodger Stadium and get as  many ballots as we could from the ushers and fill them all out for every Dodger. I’m pretty sure that somewhere at my parents’ house, I have an All-Star ballot from every year of the 80s and 90s and somewhere in my own home, I’ve got all of them since I started working at the Dodgers inthe mid 90s.

But now that the All-Star teams are primarly decided by the online vote, we can’t rely wholly on our fans in-stadium to stuff the ballot boxes! Remember, you can vote up to 25 times so show your support for your team.

Anyone have some fun stories of All-Star balloting over the years? Share them here and we hope you’ll take part in a longtime tradition throughout baseball.

Childhood Memories of Dodger Stadium

If you follow the @Dodgers on Twitter, you know that on Tuesday we have contests where fans can win various prizes. Well, with #childhoodmemories trending we figured we’d ask for people’s best memories from Dodger Stadium and the response was overwhelming.

Hundreds of great tweets in just half an hour and there would be no way to really re-tweet them all, so we figured we’d post some of them here and then tweet a link to this blog. And keep in mind, this is only from those who happened to be on Twitter at 5 p.m. PT.

If this is your first time to the Inside the Dodgers community, welcome. Lots of Dodger fans talking here each day so join in if you’d like.

If nothing else, today’s tweets remind us just how special Dodger Stadium truly is to so many people, including:

@Michelle_M16 First time meeting Shawn Green. I took the field in ’04. So sweet!
@reisNEEZY kissing the grass of the outfield on a day where they let fans on the field… my parents still have teh picture
@ryantfischer Games with my grandpa
@BleedDGRBlu  going with my father, who recently passed
@JesRey7 Sitting in the outfield seats talking to the pitchers in the bullpen
@DodgerManny58 Walking into the reserve level and seeing the Stadium from above
@Scarface909 My #Childhoodmemories of spending time with my dad going to Dodger games and enjoying classic Dodger Dogs!
@ArtG44 steve finley grandslam homerun to win the division
@RCShibley Sitting in the outfield during batting practice trying to catch homeruns.
@garbs hearing the game announced by vin scully by people with portable radios in the stands
@dogfacedandhurt Favorite #childhoodmemories are walking into stadium for first time and hearing Nancy play the sweet, sweet organ.
@nikkilicous best memory is seeing the Pope at Dodger Stadium !!
@hockeycutie13 never got to go to a dodger game as a child…but i am making up for lost time as an adult!
@fighton1985 eating dodger dogs and keeping score in the bleachers with my father

@jrzdevils30 every year going to a dodger game on my birthday June 19th it was my annual bday gift
@levi_v24 i remember going to the stadium and loved Sheffield batting stance & tried to mimic it #Dodgers
@pmartist_g The 88 WS !!
@dianavincente whenever my abuelo and abuela from Puerto Rico came to visit we would ALWAYS go to #Dodger games, favorite memories
@dodgerfanathome 1988 championship series against mets. Dad buying me a foam finger that stayed up in my room for ten years!
@boomitzel Taking a tour of the stadium.
@ava_252 dodger dogs non stop all day long wearing a hat that’s way to big
@blondielv Going w/my dear Dad who is now deceased. He gave me my love of the Dodgers.
@bongomo being on the field & able to take pictures with the players!!! still have my pics with Karros & Wallach #childhoodmemories
@bigsaldogg kirk gibson hr, fernando’s no hitter, 88ws,81ws, and nomo no hitter
@1chefdiva got to shake hands with Sandy Koufax. Didn’t wash my hand for a week!
@sylentmike being a little kid and my parents took me to watch the Olympic baseball games at dodger stadium!
@roseknows Being at the park when Dodgers clinched 1983 division title. Fernando was pitching & paper was flying everywhere.
@culverfan I remember Fernando losing 1-0 in 1985 on a 9th inning homer by tony Gwynn
@djbradster My wife remembers playing with Wes Parker in the parking lot after games as he would hit balls to the kids
@csimnick my fav. thing about going to the games when I was little was having a Dodger dog & a cool-a-coo
@itskloquewerk July 6th 1988, Franklin Stubbs grand slam against the Cards. Cards fans were giving us all high 5’s. Electric
@jase_sun going to dodger games and seeing my favorite dodgers, piazza, mondesi and nomo!
@toolOC having my mom represent long beach school district in centerfield on teacher appreciation day @Dodgers stadium
@minamonster my mom making me fake being sick so she could call out to take me to games.
@oomyjosh catching a foul ball at Dodger Stadium against the pirates in 1st grade.
@DavidTich Sitting behind the home dugout with my grandma Alice. She had the biggest crush on Tommy!

An underrated park and team?

For those who have been to PNC Park, you know that it’s one of the most impressive settings in all of baseball. A great stadium, right on the river with a gorgeous view of the downtown skyline. If you’re one of those fans who likes road tripping, I’d definitely recommend a trip.

On top of their nice park, they also have a team that’s starting to show signs of turning around their misfortunes on the field. They’re at 17-17, their best start since 2002 and according to @dejan_kovacevic, the Pirates beat writer, if they beat the Dodgers tonight, it would be the first time that they will have a winning record this late in the season since 2004.

Here’s hoping they don’t accomplish that feat and that the Dodgers can get on a roll here in Pittsburgh before returning home this weekend against the D-backs, Brewers and Giants.

If we can make it there…

The Dodgers are currently en route to the big apple and Don Mattingly’s first game as a manager in the town where he first became known to the world of baseball.

Once again, I’ll be back in LA for this trip but it’s going to be quite the media circus for Donnie tomorrow. He’s done an incredible job to date at balancing all the needs and requests that come with being a big league manager and that’s not an easy task in a town like Los Angeles.

Meanwhile, we’re still awaiting any medical updates on Broxton and/or Ethier but with the team en route right now, I’m not expecting much in the next few hours. The Dodgers certainly have been bit by the injury bug to date but that’s part of the game and the team will keep clawing through it.

And Andre’s going for 30 straight, assuming he can play in tomorrow’s game (that’s my assumption, not a medical one). First pitch is at 4:10 p.m. PT on PRIME Ticket, KABC 790 and 1020 KTNQ (in Spanish).

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.