The pitchers and catchers have arrived at Camelback Ranch to begin the 2015 Spring Training season.
Just cause I thought it be fun to imagine Vinny on the famed hill against Kershaw.
Do you consider Vinny to be a Dodger? Or, is this something that should be bestowed on players only?
And if you think of Vinny as a Dodger…would you consider Vinny the Most Valuable Dodger?
I’ve always believed that even fans were considered Dodgers…They call the fan club the Jr. Dodgers… A lot of us started out in the Dodgers fan club…
We ultimately foot the bill…
If the Dodgers could only keep one…and they were asking for donations to even do that…which pile would be bigger???
(I think they’re both priceless gems! I also think it’s shameful that greed is keeping them from the the very folks that bestow them so much love…)
My money say’s, “Vinny gets you with two soap bubbles and a Butera heater!!”
February is here and the time for baseball is near. Pitchers and catchers report to Camelback Ranch on February 19. The rest of the team will show up on the 24th.
This has been an interesting off-season filled with surprises. Stan Kasten booted Ned Colletti out of the front office and into a plum job as “Senior Advisor” doing who knows what. Talk about a soft landing. Stan then brought in Andrew Friedman as President, Baseball Operations. Friedman, who worked miracles in Tampa Bay with a shoestring budget, then hired fellow sabermetrician and economist Dr. Farhan Zaidi as General Manager. Former highly regarded General Manager Josh Byrnes was brought in as Senior Vice President, Baseball Operations. Former major leaguer Gabe Kapler, a fitness and nutrition expert and communications advocate, was brought in as Director, Player Development. He has been tasked to make sure that all levels of players are on the same page of the Dodgers way to play the game.
Andrew and his brain trust broke apart the team that won 94 games last year, but failed to get past the Division Series. Gone are Hanley Ramirez, Dee Gordon and Matt Kemp. Dan Haren and Brian Wilson are among the pitchers no longer with the team. The defense got better up the middle with the addition of Jimmy Rollins, Howie Kendrick and Yasmani Grandal. Rookie Joc Pederson will be given a shot at Center Field. Chris Heiser will platoon at Center Field and pinch hit. Pitchers Brandon McCarthy and Brett Anderson could be very good if they stay healthy. Joel Peralta should help the bullpen.
I like the roster so far. In two months, we will have a much better idea of the capabilities of the 2015 Dodgers.
The new and (hopefully) improved Dodgers are getting ready for a new season. Andrew Friedman and company wasted no time changing the roster to fit their idea of a highly functional team. Rather than spend recklessly on new talent, the new front office have used the team’s financial clout to get rid of the dead wood without worrying about how much money they were paying players to play elsewhere. I guess that is called addition by subtraction.
Rather than heaping millions on has-beens a la Ned Colletti, the new guys seem to have a more rigorous approach to their due diligence. This year’s Dodgers will have a much better defense that should play well with the ground ball inducing pitchers they have added. Home runs will probably be less this year, although if you believe the 2015 Bill James Projections, the new guys will add quite a bit of pop.
In any case, this should be an interesting year.
Happy New Year everybody!
After a dizzying 24 hour period during the Winter Meetings, the new sheriff and his deputies have run a few favorite Dodgers out of town and welcomed some strangers to Dodgertown.
Kemp, Gordon, Haren and others including FedEx and Rojas are gone. Brandon McCarthy, Jimmy Rollins, Howie Kendrick and some young pitchers and other prospects are now on the roster.
With Joc Pedersen expected to man center field in 2015, along with Rollins at Short and Kendrick at 2nd, it is widely agreed that the Dodgers will be stronger defensively up the middle. Offensively, the departure of Kemp and Hanley Ramirez left a big hole that has not been filled completely.
While Pedersen has been eagerly awaited, I am not convinced that he is ready for major league pitching, as evidenced by his huge strikeout rate in Albuquerque and his several plate appearances with the Dodgers last September. From all I have heard, his defensive play should be fine.
Jimmy Rollins and Howie Kendrick are solid additions. According to Phillies bench coach Larry Bowa, Rollins thrives in crucial situations and will take it up a notch when playing the Giants or other big games. Kendrick has been overshadowed on the Angels by big bats like Mike Trout, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton, but he brings a nice batting line with him. Brandon McCarthy is a good mid-rotation pitcher that should fit nicely behind Kershaw, Grienke and Ryu.
How do you feel about the changes so far? Stay tuned, Andrew Friedman and company are not done yet.
Farhan Zaidi and Andrew Friedman have been busy identifying and obtaining second tier players to flesh out the Dodger’s depth chart. Eric Stephen has the story at his True Blue LA site.
All the new players added to the 40 man roster, except pitchers Joel Peralta and Juan Nicasio, have options remaining and can be sent to the newly rebranded Oklahoma City Dodgers.
According to Zaidi, this strategy will make it easier to obtain impact players later on, maybe even during the Winter Meetings that start this week.
In September, the Oklahoma City MiLB franchise was acquired by Mandalay Baseball, which is a joint venture between ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers and an investor group led by Mandalay Entertainment Chairman and CEO Peter Guber, who is also a minority owner of the Dodgers.
Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve seen from our new front office what on the surface many would describe as moves made by the old front office: Inbound players Kyle Jensen, Adam Liberatore, Joel Peralta, Mike Bolsinger, and now the newest acquisition, Juan Nicasio. Not exactly headliners. Outbound players Onelki Garcia and Jarret Martin (waivers), plus Greg Harris and Jose Dominguez (traded), all of whom were prime “prospects” at one point or another. Part of the moneyball philosophy is to upgrade the fringe players, which all of these names would certainly apply. The question is, did they? That can be widely debated and we may not know the outcome for some time, but for the most part these moves have been met with a resounding, whatever. It begs the question though, if they had been made by our former baseball sage Ned Colletti, would everyone be up in arms? Its an interesting adventure into psychology and perception to say the least.