Thanks to everyone for their concern about Vin Sculy last night. He should be back this evening, but had to tend to a personal issue and missed last night’s game. That was why Rick Monday was solo on radio and Charley and Steve handled TV, but we should be back to the normal home schedule going forward. Jerry Reuss will make his regular season debut alongside Rick during the upcoming trip to Atlanta and Florida.

Also, I noticed an interesting thing doing the notes this morning which somewhat shows that power isn’t the end-all, be-all of successful teams. Granted, we’re talking about a 26-game sample size, but did you know that this year, in games when the team hits a homer, they’re only 7-6 and when they don’t homer, they’re 8-5? That certainly is a little evidence that it comes down to pitching more than power, or at least that’s one way to look at it. After all, when the Dodgers allow three runs or less, they’re 10-1 and when they allow four or more, they’re 5-10.

Anyway, it’s a night off for Nomar tonight. Here’s the lineup and some game notes:

Furcal, SS

Pierre, CF

Anderson, 1B

Kent, 2B

Gonzo, LF

Martin, C

Ethier, RF

Betemit, 3B

Penny, P

LET’S PLAY FOUR – Russell Martin got a well-deserved day off last night after catching all 17 innings of Sunday’s marathon at San Diego. Martin also caught all 16.2 innings of last year’s 17-inning game against Oakland on June 17, going 3-for-8 to give him a combined .313 average (5-for-16) average over the 34 innings. In total for those two games, Martin caught 473 pitches, including 191 from Derek Lowe, who started both of the contests.

DEEP SIX – Since moving to Los Angeles, only three Dodgers have had six hits in a game and all three times it came in the month of May. Willie Davis (5/24/73), Paul Lo Duca (5/28/01) and Shawn Green (5/23/02) are the only L.A. Dodgers to accomplish the feat. Five Brooklyn Dodgers had a six-hit game, with Walter Gilbert (5/30/31) being the only one to pull it off in May. Among current Dodgers, only Nomar Garciaparra has a six-hit game and it came on June 21, 2003.

WELCOME BACK – The Dodgers would like to welcome back Kirk Gibson, who serves as Arizona’s bench coach. Gibson’s homer in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series was voted the Greatest Sports Moment in Los Angeles History. Also in uniform that night and tonight is Rick Honeycutt, who played for Oakland and now serves as the Dodgers’ pitching coach.

IN A PINCH – Outfielder/infielder Marlon Anderson collected his 64th career pinch hit last night, raising his lifetime average as a pinch-hitter to .291 (64-for-220). Anderson also has more pinch hits (54) than any other player in baseball since 2004. The Alabama native played the field for the first time this season, logging 2.0 innings last night at second base.

CONTACT COUNTS – As a team, the Dodgers have struck out just 134 times this season, the second-lowest total in the National League. The only team to fan less than Los Angeles is St. Louis, which has struck out 124 times but has also played two less games than the Dodgers. Leading the way in the contact department for the Dodgers are Nomar Garciaparra, Juan Pierre and Luis Gonzalez, who rank sixth, seventh and ninth in the NL, respectively, in the hardest to fan category.

LUCKY PENNY – Brad Penny is seeking to become the first Dodger starting pitcher to begin the season 4-0 since Kazuhisa Ishii went 6-0 with a 2.95 ERA in his first six starts in 2002. Penny’s 1.95 ERA is seventh best in the National League.

DON’T BE LATE – Tomorrow’s game is a special 12:10 p.m. start and is Disney School Field Trip Day at Dodger Stadium. Luis Gonzalez, Andre Ethier and several student volunteers will participate in the event, which will be held in right field from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Some of the students will be demonstrating how bats made out of different compositions will cause different reactions. The bats will be used as giveaways for the kids and will be signed by Mickey Mouse.



    Some thoughts on the current offensive slump…

    A team like the Dodgers, which can certainly be characterized as a small-ball team, will go through slumps like this periodically throughout the season. They rely on consecutive base-hits to score, and since they usually hit singles (29.3% of their hits have been for extra bases), that means they often need 2-3 hits in a row to score the baserunner. (This would get easier if the batters would be more patient and walk more, of course.) In any case, a team with this offensive makeup can be thrown into a huge slump by one or two players not producing (lately, Furcal, Gonzo, and Betemit to make three – the 1, 5, and 8 batters. Slumpers evenly spread throughout the lineup, which is bad for getting consecutive base hits).

    What will happen? Furcal’s bat will wake up, and so will Gonzo’s (or Kemp’s if he’s spelling a struggling Gonzo). The team will score a boatload of runs. Then, three weeks after that starts, they will slump again once one or two hitters are slumping/playing through injuries. This will happen throughout the season; the saving grace, in my opinion, is the depth of the Dodgers’ pitching staff which will keep them in most games when the offense hits these slumps. As I noted in the last blog, they have a 3.43 team ERA, 4th best in all of baseball behind the Mets, A’s, and Red Sox. (Soon, the Mets and A’s will drop from those positions d/t injuries – I think the Dodgers will continue to be solid, esp. w/ Brazoban returning.)

    Let’s just hope no one is slumping in October, as happened last year.


    Furcal traditionally struggles early in the season so why not try & work walks & try to steel bases ANYTHING is better then swinging at first balls!. Pierre/bullet head, i’m numb from him so what ever.


    i know once Furcal gets hot again things will change just a little frustrated that’s all.


    I have no idea why Meat is still in the line-up. The Dodgers need to draw the line somewhere.


    Not one person here wants to comment on the possibility of losing Schmidt for the season to the rumor of shoulder surgery?? My how our priorities have changed. : )

    For those who didn’t read it, check the last thread and you’ll see my earlier posts…


    Go Blue! I may talk bad about Bernies job as a GM in evaluating talent but I love my dodgers and in general pretty happy that we will be in most games all year long and be fighting for the playoffs. Let’s go Penny. Let’s start a long winning streak tonight…


    Why is it the lineup’s always “plug ‘n play” for Grady??? I mean come on… why bat Anderson in Nomar’s slot? Just because he’s playing first base doesn’t mean that he HAS to bat third… or does it? I’d rather see Ethier get a shot at that slot over Anderson…

    Go Dodgers!!!



    Im not sure that’s a very good source… no point in talking about it ’till someone, ANYONE with in the organization says anything about surgery/season being over etc…. Schmidt is a priority for sure, its just that were not exactly missing him at this point since he didn’t do anything and we don’t know when he is coming back. Id say he is the diff between a 88-90 win team that exits in the first round and us going to the WS.


    Concerning the Schmidt deal, Ben Maller’s site mostly places rumors on his website. I wouldn’t put to much into it. Also, there’s no link to prove the speculation that he is going to miss an extended amount of time (i.e the whole season), hence why it’s a rumor (also Foxsports called it that). I’ll wait till I hear about Schmidt’s injury from a credible source. Also, this is a good off-day for Nomar (0 for 11 vs. Hernandez) and a perfect place for Marlon (10 for 32 vs. Hernandez) to sub in, maybe not in the three spot, but then again that’s why they play the game. I’ll be there in person!

    Go Dodgers!


    While I do agree that Grady does do the plug n play sometimes, I’d say that Anderson has definatly showed he can clutch hit and against a guy he hits .313 lifetime I’d say thats a good spot for him.As far as schmidt goes we don’t have him now and if we don’t have him for the rest of the season there isn’t anything we can say or do that makes a differance one way or another so its a moot point to discuss it true or not.We have Depth for pitching.I mean most of you were calling for Penny to go on the chopping block before the season started…he didn’t because #1 He Pitches well in the start of the season and #2 Ned wants to keep the Pitching stacked.That was not a good place we were in lastyear pitching wise although we had a similar team except for Drew and to tell the truth I still don’t miss him.We will before years end have a kid working in the outfield with Gonzo getting fewer AB’s and Starts which will make him more valuble to pinch hit during the playoffs.Meat has built it Abreu will come…..

    Go Blue 2007!!!


    having a guy in Anderson coming right off the bench and batting third is moronic. Grady still doesn’t seem to use common sense.


    OK, let’s talk for just a second about the possibility of losing Schmidt. That stinks. Pure and simple. There are no two ways around that. It’s awful. If Schmidt does not pitch the rest of the season, it will hurt our chances in the division and the playoffs. It is the third or fourth-worst injury that could happen to us. And I am deeply hoping that he gets better and is back out there soon.

    But it is not the end of the line by any measure.

    The great thing about this team is the depth in pitching. Penny and Lowe are both capable of being the ace of the staff. So a staff that had three #1 starters would have only two. But Hendrickson has looked good. And if he does not work out, we have Billingsley. And if he does not work out, we have Kuo. And if he does not work out we have Stults. And if he does not work out we have Joe Mays. And if he does not work out we have DJ Houlton. And only if all those guys don’t work out, would we turn to pitchers who have not been major league starters, but who have a lot of promise–Greg Miller and Scott Elbert.

    So I can’t understate how bad it is to lose Schmidt–if we do, and God willing we haven’t–but he is not irreplaceable. There really are only two players who are irreplaceable, and one who, while there is a great replacement waiting down in AAA, we don’t want to lose because he is so good and clutch, and could change positions and let that prospect come up (I am too superstitious to name the three of them, but I think everyone knows who I am talking about, and their uniform numbers all include a “5” [and the more “5”s you have the more irreplaceable you are]).

    So, I too thought it was odd to see Fish in the third spot in the line-up, but he hit like crazy when he played last fall, so why not? You could put Martin or Ethier there too, but it’s just one game, so you’re really not going to be able to gauge them as a number three hitter from one night. At least we did not put Betemit there, hoping that he’ll see better pitches with Kent hitting behind him.

    Actually, what is strange is seeing Anderson play first. He is really not a First Basemen. I might have expected to see Kent slide over for the night. But it should not be a problem.


    I’d rather have Schmidt stay away from the rotation as long as possible if he’s going to be an ineffective as he was at the beginning of the year. I honestly think for this year we could do just as well without him. It does call into quesiton whether it was a good idea to sign him though. I wouldn’t want him returning unless he’s 100%… like others I believe we have many other good options.


    Meat is still in the lineup because he’s batting .500 and he owned this pitcher. Geez calm down this should be the prefect night for him to break his slump. If he can’t break it tonight he should be benched.


    I think Grady got common sense when he see that Anderson is batting .313 in his career against Livan.


    Why is Marlon playing first base when James Loney is sitting on his *** in Vegas? This is truly ridiculous. I cannot agree with this decision in any way, whatsoever. Without a doubt, this is the worst move made by the Dodgers thus far.

    Marlon Anderson???!!!! You’ve really got to be kidding me. James Loney is going to shoot himself in the head.


    maybe kent doesn’t want to play 1st base. i remember him not being to happy about it in the past.


    Pierre is so bad that even if he had caught the ball the runner would have scored due to his noodle arm.


    If there is no real great positive correlation with power and home runs, then all the reason for Betermit to take his 18 home runs elsewhere…


    Noodle arm!!! ****.

    Both our D and offense is horrendous tonight. ONE RUN OFF OF LIVAN- ******* -HERNANDEZ!!!!


    this team so far is pretty much confirming my fear that they wouldn’t score enough runs. hard to win when you score 1 run a game.


    Well great win tonight– should have been by a lot more, but nonetheless, a win and in dramatic fashion.
    Dodgerdude and maxpower, you come on a criticize pierre the second after makes a questionable play, really just a play you dont agree with. If you are that die hard of a fan, live and die with every single movement, than thats great, but why not post something about the W????? the moment after pierre makes that play.

    And also, that wasnt even a bad read. Sinking line drive right at him, he just Ethier make a seriously bad read, and with him arm the runner does score anyway, so you are both absolutely wrong. And its just annoying the way you bash the guy, we get your point– there’s no need to strut, we all come here for the same reason- Including JP.


    it was a bad read…anything ball is missplayed in the outfield 99.9% of the time its a bad read. Even if he played it properly the run would have scored.

    I just think people are really severely overrating Pierre just because of his speed and 200 hits.


    Okay… so Brad Penny’s cruising along on 95 pitches… he goes 6 innings… and he’s throwing first pitch strikes to 80% of his batters. So there’s that…

    Penny was due to bat with one out in the sixth with runners at 1st and 2nd. Nomar pinch hits for him and walks… Furcal strikes out and Pierre hits a soft fly ball to left. End of inning. Was this really the time to pinch-hit for Brad Penny? He’s got 3 hits in 11 at bats. Certainly he could have advanced the runners, or even slugged one in or perhaps even hit into a double play. So what??? He was CRUISING in this game!!

    FOR THE LOVE OF PETE!! Will someone please tell me why it is that 100 pitches is the freakin’ “MAGIC NUMBER” these days??? Somewhere… 53??? Will you please confirm this for me??? Somewhere… Don Drysdale is rolling in his grave right now. Why is it that because a pitcher gets to around a hundred pitches that he’s suddenly “pinch-hit fodder”??? Penny got out of the 6th on only 8 pitches!! He was getting the job done tonight. So what if he throws another 15 or 20 pitches and maybe even pitches another inning or two? Hernandez threw 121 pitches tonight… and yes… I know Penny throws harder… but that’s his makeup. He’s used to throwing like that. Why can’t he do it? Why can’t Derrick Lowe do it? He doesn’t throw that hard?

    I guess I’m just looking for answers to this question. It’s been bugging me for many years and I’ve yet to hear any common sense answer as to why a hundred pitches seems to be the cut-off point. I don’t know the specifics to the stats… but I’m fairly certain that Drysdale and Koufax pitched more than a hundred pitches on many occasions throughout their careers. Heck, I’m sure the Dodger pitchers through the seventies did the same thing. Someone… ANYONE… please tell me why this is so prevalent in today’s game? Please… I am dying to hear any logical answer to this.

    Brad Penny deserved to have a shot at WINNING this game!! And will someone please point Juan Pierre in the direction towards the baseball??? PLEASE??? Simply horrible…


    Max… don’t be one. How would you like to be called a moro-n?

    Moro-n was originally a scientific term, coined by psychologist Henry H. Goddard from a Greek word meaning “foolish” and used to describe a person with a genetically determined mental age between 8 and 12 on the Binet scale. It was also once applied to people with an IQ of 51-70 and was a step up from “imbecile” (IQ of 26-50) and two steps up from “idiot” (IQ of 0-25). The word moro-n, along with “retarded” and “feeble-minded” (among others), was once considered a valid descriptor in the psychological community, though these words have all now passed into common slang use, exclusively in a detrimental context.

    In his later years, Goddard recanted his previous theories, but they had already been published and translated into German. His writings inspired the Nazis who sent people deemed “moro-ns” to the gas chambers.


    Oh yeah… this was a good win that was pulled from the jaws of defeat which was pulled from the jaws of victory… a much needed resurrection of a win.

    Go Dodgers!!!


    So Max you think JP is Horrible and at the Same time do you think that Ethier made a good play on that ??? triple that scored the ONLY run by the snakes was a good read or by in any means less then an error? Making Great diving catches is great but with nobody on with 1 out is it not better to keep the ball in front of you then to let it go to the wall?That is the play that cost Penny the Win.

    On another note.. I think the snakes have been winning by playing a very crafty game when they are not Blowing the socks off a Tired team.They pitched around people alot tonight and came up lucky in all but the 9th.. Fastball up to Saenz…..on a 1-1 count…..

    JP had 2 good slaps where atleast 1 would have fallen to our LF both with bases loaded.I’ll take that anyday over looking stupid swinging for the fence and striking out.

    Our Offense has stagnated and I think it goes more to a point where we really need to Juggle the order.Ethier is coming on strong now and I think maybe ready for cleanup with Martin Backing him and Kent/Gonzo going 6th and 7th.I know it will never look like that this year with Grady calling the shots but I think it would work well.

    Great Win

    Go Blue 2007!!!


    Ethier made the right play he just didn’t catch it. He read it properly, unlike Pierre, he just misplayed the catch.

    I don’t know if Ethier is a clean up type of guy but in this lineup with no clean power guy it could work. Ethier would be a great number 3 guy but we already have one in Nomar. I’d love to see this lineup…







    Third Baseman



    Well we need to swap Gonzo and Martin immediately– im fine with Kent in the 4 spot, but then it gets tough bc you have gonzo, ethier back to back which isnt really a good thing… Russ is just a much better hitter than Gonzo, but its bad to have that lefty-lefty thing. What joy the future brings….


    I have no issues with Pierre’s bat. He’s been hitting above a .340 clip lately. It’s his defense that I’m critical of. It’s one thing to misplay a ball here and there… but it seems to be almost every other game that he goofs up on a ball. But he’s hitting and stealing bases… this is a good thing.

    Gonzo’s not doing it and YES, Betemit is in a career batting slump… and I mean possibly end of Dodgers’ career slump. My lineup as of now would be… and this if the Dodgers would pull the trigger on bringing up Abreau:










    Why sacrifice Martin to the #2 spot?That is Why JP is fit for the spot #1 gets on #2 moves him or gets on.Martin Can Hit anywhere and hit well but #1 gets on with speed #2 moves speed runner to scoring position # 3 or 4 scores #1 #5 scores the rest….and #6 ditto if its still going like the treadmill its supposed to be.Batting JP 8th make the least sence of all…..


    There I go with that “KEMP – KENT” transposition again… I meant Kent, not Kemp. Kemp will be back soon enough.










    he went 0-3 tonight and is down to .269 avg Bigbie is still tearing it up at over .400


    I like that lineup– Ethier in the three spot really is the only other option, and i believe he is capable of it, but he needs to get on that roll.. his swing is so pretty, and when he is having good AB’s he hits the ball hard and at the right times.


    Anyone… just not Betemit right now. Grady will try for another two weeks… if he’s not hitting by then, look for the organization to bring up a “third baseman”.


    Ethier would have easily had 75 rbi last year had he not gone in that terrible slump/played 145-150 games…


    Ethier might even be good in the #2. Isn’t nice to dream up these lineups that we know Grady will never consider? I mean, the man couldn’t even juggle the lineup so that Marlon WASNT batting 3rd.

    We should trade Bigbie while he’s hot. Supposedly he’s insurance for gonzo going down…but..uh.. shouldn’t that be Kemp?


    Nomar will drive in more runs from the 3 spot. Also, with my lineup you mix right-hand, left-hand much better and give Ethier his dream shot which I think he’s suited for. Kent will still get his shot at driving in runs from the 5 spot and Martin will contiue to pound the ball from the 6 slot. Until Pierre is gone from this team, Martin is made for the 6 slot. Pierre’s speed demands that he play up top in the order.


    I’d leave Nomar where he is for now till (if) he falls off but by then Martin will be feeling the effects of the year too and Ethier tailed off bad late too but Kent by that time should be lighting the defense up as well as Furcal.


    In My eyes if the Dodgers could build a commanding lead in the NL west they could afford the Luxury of resting some Vets Giving some well deserved Kids a shot and go in Fresh to the Playoffs but this seems to be the NL stronghold this year so it might still be a tooth n nail run witha a very strong or very tired team a t the end and Yes THIS IS GREAT!!!!

    Go Blue 2007!!!


    Can’t really blame Ethier for being aggressive and shutting down any playable balls out in the right field. He’s saved us a lot more runs than he’s cost us.


    Yes I know and only reason I said anything was the situation. 1 out nobody on drops for a single double play in effect. Gets past you in a 1 run game and its trouble.Not to mention that we really don’t want him to hurt himself diving when he doesn’t have to save the bases loaded game.He is a great player and I Very much appriciate his defence and hitting ability I just don’t want him to pull a Jason….That’s my point.


    i think Ethier played the ball thinking that he should be aggressive towards it because he didn’t want to allow a base runner. He made the right decision he just didn’t catch the ball.


    O but Max, he didnt make the play… Allow a baserunner on first base instead of one on third. Its ok, Ethier made a worse play than Pierre.. He did not make the right decision, ESPECIALLY not with Broxton pitching. PLease Max, i know you know this… There probably wont be many times where Pierre actully makes a better play than Ethier defensively, i will admit this, but you should also admit that tonight Pierre made the better play.


    and that would be an error in judgement…C’mon you torch JP for being aggressive at the plate you torch Betemit for being patient at the plate you torch all players who are not your Golden children… Get off your pedestal….and get behind The Dodgers or Go away ….


    I was in the dugout club after the game, and a number of players came out, but more interestingly, I saw Ned going into the bar. No one else paid attention to him, but I begged him to call up Loney. He laughed (not at the concept, I think, but the enthusiasm). I also saw Charley Steiner go into the bar.

    Betemit could not get a bunt down. He was 0 for 2. I went to Sunday’s marathon in San Diego, and he was the only position player that did not play (yes, I know he had been sick on Saturday, but if it’s a 17 inning game, you use everyone).

    It just does not make sense anymore. Yes, Nomar needs to stay healthy, but over at Dodger Thoughts, he points out that there are maybe 3 assists by a 3B in a game, but there are a lot more plays involving the First Baseman. The 3B has to throw, but a First Baseman hast stretch, jump or twist for a bad throw. Both have to dive for balls down the line (maybe a third baseman more, because there are more right0handed hitters). But overall, it’s not that much harder than first. Meanwhile, Loney has nothing left to prove.

    A note–Pierre blew the play witha bad read, but it probably did not matter. Ethier blew the play, but he played it right–in hindsight, it’s easy to blame, but in a one-run game, he’s trying to get the out. Wrong call, but nice effort. He’ll learn. Meanwhile, he had 2 hits and a walk, and great weekend defense. So it happens.

    Pierre has been up a bunch with the bases loaded. He had a good piece of hitting tonight, but got robbed. On Friday, though, after Furcal walked on 4 pitches, he swung on the fist pitch. Bad. he needs to work the count more.


    i hope that you got across that they are a whole slew of us who want to see loney, not just one crazy fan 🙂


    ewk216…Ethier and Pierre’s palys were two completely different plays and situations though. Ethier’s ball was a catchable ball and he made the right decision to be agressive but he just didn’t catch it.

    Pierre’s ball wasn’t catchable and why he charged it so agressive is beyond me. Pierre doesn’t make good reads and he doesn’t take good routes to balls. People thinks he does just because he can compensate for his speed. Without his speed he is a subpar defender.


    Kent is not like that to decline playing 1st base. If Grady wanted him playing 1st base he would play it.


    I really hate to do this but 0couldn’t Kent played 3rd moving Nomar to 2nd base and Loney get called him and take Betamit spot. What is the risk factor of him getting hurt from 2nd base? The weird part he hasn’t played 2nd bases in his mlb career but I think if you played SS, 2nd bases should be much easier to played.


    From ESPN’s Diamond Daily – the Good, Bad, and Ugly performances:

    “Edwin Jackson lasted just 1 1/3 innings and allowed six runs in the Devil Rays’ 9-1 loss to the Twins. Jackson threw 49 pitches, just 29 for strikes.”

    He got the Ugly award.


    Gonzo’s really making the Diamondbacks sorry they let him go. Unfortunately we signed him. Also having Beetlejuice in center does not help this team.


    No really… would someone please take a stab at answering my emotional post up above? 53? You’re invited too…

    With the state of the bullpen after Sunday’s marathon game, it made absolutely no sense to pinch-hit for a cruising Brad Penny on only 95 pitches in the 6th inning. Penny’s a decent hitter… certainly he could have moved the runners along or even driven in a run as well. And if he made an out, so what?

    Why is 100 the “magic number”? I mean really… break it down: 100 pitches over 9 innings is 11 per inning. Is THAT really possible? Could a pitcher do that AND put a complete game under his belt? Yes, but it’s VERY unlikely, and this is telling when trying to find the whereabouts of all the complete games of the past. Where did they go? To the statisticians, that’s where. Somewhere, somehow, someone came up with “100 pitches” as being a “cut off” point… I want to know when and why… because Penny deserved to keep pitching last night. The bullpen needed it most and with the way Penny was throwing, perhaps we wouldn’t even have had to mention Andre Ethier and Juan Pierre in the same sentence.

    Drysdale and Koufax and whomever else has pitched a complete game in the past, more than likely has thrown more than 100 pitches in doing so. This is why I’m saying: “Somewhere, Don Drysdale is rolling in his grave…” at the thought of pitchers being removed so early in baseball games in this day and age.


    Ksspark, I’m with you. In the 50’s, 60’s & 70’s, all starting pitchers were expected to go NINE innings and throw anywhere from 120 to 150 pitches per game. These pitchers today go 6 innings and it is called a quality start. In the Golden age of baseball, six innings would get you an early trip to the minors.



    Absolutely. That’s my point. And there are many, many more 220 to 300 game winners from those days than one will ever see from today’s pitchers. Their bodies adjusted to the load and in my humble opinion this is why I feel pitchers of today get hurt more often. They’re just getting warmed up by the 4th or 5th innings and then get yanked an inning or so later, or whenever they hit this 100 pitch count that seems to have mysteriously become the end-all gospel within the circles of pitching philosophy. It needs to change… at least let a guy pitch through the 7th or 8th innings.


    Especially if he’s throwing the baseball with command like Penny was last night…


    I too totally disagree with that pitch count theory and today’s starting pitchers. The qualitative question should be if the starter shows that he’s losing his stuff – not the pitch count. I think this issue is just a part of the excessive micro-managing by today’s stat oriented managers. This same approach gets us to platoon players more than necessary with the righty/lefty concerns. Used to be that a quality major league player could deal with a pitcher from either side. Today a lot of players are not given the chance to develop their batting skills properly, or at least like they did in the “old days”.


    I Guess I must be getting old as I Attended 30-40 games per year in the “old” days. I shared Stadium Club Level seats between Home and Third. Good Seats.



    Well, KDay, I’m the one who’s getting “old”. I’ve only had the pleasure of attending at Dodger Stadium once in my lifetime. My memories goes back to 1951 as a developing Dodger fan. They certainly played the game differently then. It was not a money game, as when Drysdale and Koufax had to practically go on strike to be guaranteed the lofty sum of $100,000 a year. This was, of course, when they were well established winners already.


    Pitch count has everything to do with money. It’s just a way of management protecting their investment. Plus you have to take into account the pitchers stamina. Maybe Penny told Grittle he was done and had nothing left. Some guys can go well over 100 pitches but they are rare…Guys like Koufax, Drysdale and Ryan don’t come around very often.


    Max, although I disagree with you on your assessment of the Ethier play, I agree with this last statement that pitch counts are all about protecting investments. I think as medical diagnosis and evaluation has progressed, everyone has realized to what degree throwing a baseball is an unnatural motion. GMs are even more concerned, with high payrolls, about the long-term health of a pitcher. Back when all the pitchers pitched most of a game, relievers were not as skilled, and were undervalued. Relief pitchers are much better, and much better paid, these days, and that reflects the need for these guys as pitch counts have become more important.

    Whoever said that the arm adapts to throwing higher pitch counts – as far as I know, you can not strengthen the ligaments that hold the humerus to the ulna. Every consecutive pitch puts greater strain on that ligament, which is the one that gets blown out when a guy requires Tommy John surgery. You can strengthen your muscles, but that will not protect the underlying connective tissue which does not function or recover in the same way that muscle tissue does. You may find pitchers who are naturally suited to higher pitch counts, like Livan Hernandez, but you can not “train” a pitcher to throw 150 pitches a night if his ligaments are not suited to it.

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