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.
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!
And that’s how we kick off the Inside the Dodgers blog for 2011…
We head to Camelback Ranch in just six weeks and after six more weeks at baseball’s best Spring Training site, we are back here at Dodger Stadium for Opening Day against the Giants.
As you have probably heard, ESPN wanted to get the Dodgers/Giants rivalry as their marquee game on Opening Day, so they asked us to move our home opener, April 1, to the night before so that it could be televised nationally. So, we’ll have three of our first four games on national or regional TV — Thursday and Sunday on ESPN and Friday on FOX. And pretty soon, we’ll be able to give you the whole TV schedule for the season with KCAL and Prime Ticket.
The energy and buzz at the stadium has ramped up significantly since we returned from the holiday break. And as promised, I’m going to work harder to make this blog more exciting, more relevant and with more of your input throughout the year. Please know that your comments about the blog’s commenting functionality are being addressed as we speak. I’m very, very hopeful that the good people at MLBlogs.com will have a solution before Opening Day.
It’s been 11 days since the last post here at Inside the Dodgers and no, we haven’t forgotten about you.
When this blog started nearly five years ago, there was a photo from Holman Stadium and we invoked a James Earl Jones line from Field of Dreams.
Five weeks later, Twitter’s founder Evan Williams had his first tweet and the way in which the world communicates changed. Well, that was only part of it. In between then and now, Facebook has grown to the size of the world’s third-largest country, videos go viral and reach more people than many mainstream media outlets ever did and the way in which we speak with our fans is vastly different than in 2006.
We wrote that day from Vero Beach that “It is our sincere hope that much like the cornfields in Iowa, ‘if we build it, you will come.'” And you have. Thousands and thousands of you view this site daily (admittedly, I stopped checking the numbers long ago) and the comments are among the most active on the entire MLBlogs network. Even as the regularity of posts has dropped off, you’ve still made Inside the Dodgers the ninth-most visited site on the network, according to the November leaders.
So as we wind down for the holidays, we’re trying to figure out what exactly we should be doing with this site for 2011. We have every intention of keeping it up and keeping it active, but we’ve got to do a better job of keeping it fresh…perhaps more photos, video and a true inside look at the thing you all care about most – the Dodgers.
Any and all ideas are welcome…it’s really been amazing to watch the community here grow. In some cases, kids who started reading this blog in junior high are shipping off to college. Others, like Joe Pierre, made their first pilgrimage to Dodger Stadium after decades of loving the team. One couple even met on Inside the Dodgers and are now married. OK, I made that one up, but the amazing stories go on and on…
So we thank for your support over the years and your patience as we redefine what this blog is all about. Happy holidays to all, here’s to a healthy 2011 (with a lot of victories and a parade) and stay tuned for more from Inside the Dodgers.
There’s a lot going on these days at Dodger Stadium, and that’s a great thing. With Juan Uribe flying to Los Angeles to take his physical, Ned Colletti and his staff obviously realized that once he passed, we would have an extra infielder (Ryan Theriot) and he had a deal in place to move Ryan to St. Louis in exchange for Blake Hawksworth.
News like this tends to have a lot of moving parts, with Uribe heading to the doctor for the physical, sorting through the media availability for various players, making sure that word of a trade doesn’t get out before the players hear it from their respective teams. So of course, with that, is a lot of internal planning.
But, we have a great front office and PR department, medical staff, etc. who helped today run seamlessly. We got word that Juan was official and let the media know that the deal was done and that he’d be available on a conference call. From there, Ned had to call Ryan and let him know that he had been traded to St. Louis. And then, Juan headed to the stadium for a quick visit with team officials, a tour of the clubhouse and the conference call before he grabs dinner and catches a very early morning flight back to the D.R.
He couldn’t have been a nicer guy and his wife was also very kind. He said that Manny Mota pretty much called him every day after the World Series telling him how much the Dodgers wanted to see him in Blue and he said that it was very meaningful to him that the team cared so much about him. Before they took off from the stadium, we armed them with all sorts of hats and Dodger items to bring back to the Dominican and we’re certainly looking forward to having him on the team in 2011.
For those who follow such things, Blake is on Twitter @blakehawksworth but he’s yet to weigh in via that account…still, I’m sure he’ll be picking up a lot of L.A. followers. And hopefully he’ll add a nice arm to the bullpen for 2011.
Ned seems to still be on the hunt for more pitching, a LF and, as he says, to sort through the catching situation. Stay tuned…we certainly hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday.
Those who have followed Inside the Dodgers for a long time probably recall that every couple years, our industry heads to one spot to share best practices and talk about the future of the game on the business side of things. No different than what most of you do in your own jobs at various conferences around the country.
So, we find ourselves in Orlando, having talked about the international future of baseball (the Dogders’ trips to China and Taiwan came up several times), the changing landscape of media (lots of talk about blogs, Twitter, Facebook, flip cam videos, etc), the World Baseball Classic and even those who cover the business of sports.
It’s always a great way to network and pick up some ideas from others in the industry and tonight, there’s a team building event in which we’ll all be building 100 bikes for young kids from the local Boys & Girls Club. Pretty cool way to tie into their theme of “Going Beyond” which you’ve seen throughout the postseason.
In the past year, the 80s have made a surprising surge back to relevance in Hollywood. Movie remakes of 80s movies (Clash of the Titans), 80s toys turned into movies (Transformers), 80s TV shows turned into movies (A-Team), even movies about returning to the 80s (Hot Tub Time Machine).
We’ve decided to ride the wave back to the days of Space Invaders, the Delorean and of course, the King of Pop as we celebrate 80s Night in less than two weeks at Dodger Stadium (August 6th for those keeping track).
In honor of the decade that brought us Bon Jovi and Big Hair, the entertainment for the evening will have an acid-washed tint to it. In addition, the first 20,000 fans will take home a limited-edition poster featuring Matt Kemp. We penciled in Kemp as the 80s poster-boy back in January, however, we didn’t determine the exact direction for its design until about a month ago.
Kemp was happy to lend his likeness to the poster, but I don’t think he knew exactly what he was getting in to when we agreed to take part in the photo shoot on Friday. We had a full wardrobe ready, with an authentic (read: costume shop replica) red leather jacket, aviators, fedora, white v-neck and of course, a silver glove! Matt already has a gold one to go with it, but once he slid the glove on, donned the fedora, and looked into the camera, MK channeled MJ pretty quickly. Using my iPhone as the soundtrack (hopefully DMN can enhance the audio on the Inside Dodgertown piece coming soon) Kemp gave us a few “he-heee’s” as he struck poses under the direction of Jon SooHoo.
The shot to be used is still to be determined, but Matt gave us plenty to work with and we’ll release the design on dodgers.com later this week. For now, start digging out the legwarmers and parachute pants (in Dodger blue of course) and plan on joining us August 6th as the Nationals come to town on 80s Night with their prodigal pitcher, Stephen Strasburg (born in 1988!), scheduled to pitch (perhaps against Kershaw, given that he’s also scheduled to pitch on Sunday due to his suspension). Here’s hoping Kemp proves to be the king of pop at the plate when the two face each other.
James Loney just drew a walk to load the bases in the first inning…
It was hard to believe, but researching the notes for today, it dawned on me that James has basically carried the offense for the past six weeks. The Dodgers were six games under .500 on April 29 and have gone 30-16 since then, for a .652 winning percentage.
During that time, Loney leads the team in slugging percentage, on-base percentage, batting average, doubles, homers and RBI…and his 38 RBI are twice as many as the next-highest total (DeWitt’s 19). That’s crazy. Meanwhile, during that same period, Broxton, Kuo and Weaver are a combined 7-0 with a 1.44 ERA. Pretty impressive.
Anyway, here’s hoping we can get out of town with a victory tonight. For those who follow the team on Twitter @dodgertownusa, we posted some random photos from around town today, as I wandered along the Freedom Trail in Boston, a very nice stroll throughout town. Dodger fans, as expected, were everywhere.