Back in California

The Dodgers left the soggy capital city, where they won game 1 of the scheduled doubleheader 7-4 before the nightcap was postponed indefinitely due to rain, and returned to sunny California.  They return to action tonight in the city by the bay, San Francisco.

This season will not see the Dodgers playing in October, and what remains of it will be used to evaluate several options for next year.  Andre Ethier has been shut down and is in Alabama to start the process to fix his knee.  His absence will provide a convenient opportunity for Jerry Sands to show if his reconfigured swing will be successful in the bigs.

The Dodgers, coming off of a two game winning streak and having won eight of their last ten, will face the Giants, who have lost their last game and six of their last ten.  San Francisco is still 4.5 games ahead of the Dodgers but well within reach in the fight for second place.

Tonight Clayton Kershaw will  take the mound and continue his difficult quest for the Cy Young award.

This Day in Dodgers History

September 9, 1965 – Sandy Koufax’s perfect game against the Cubs bests Bob Hendley’s one hit effort, 1-0. The Dodger Stadium gem is the southpaw’s record fourth no-hitter.

Thanks to Yunghitters89 for the more expanded version:

On this day in 1965, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Sandy Koufax pitches the eighth perfect game in major league history, leading the Dodgers to a 1-0 win over the Chicago Cubs at Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles.

Sandy Koufax was a talented all-around athlete from Borough Park in Brooklyn, New York. His first love was basketball, and he attended the University of Cincinnati on a basketball scholarship. His impressive left arm, however, attracted the attention of major league ball clubs and in 1954 he was signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers. Despite his promising talent, Koufax won just 36 games to 51 losses from 1955 to 1961, and was incredibly inconsistent, blowing hitters away one game and walking in runs the next. Finally, advice from veteran catcher Norm Sherry turned Koufax around. As Koufax recounted in his autobiography, Sherry told him to “take the grunt out of the fastball.” It worked: From 1962 to 1966, Sandy Koufax executed what are arguably the five greatest seasons by a pitcher in baseball history. His newfound control limited his walks from 4.8 per game to just 2.1, and he pitched no-hitters in three consecutive years–1962, 1963 and 1964.

On September 9, 1965, at the peak of his baseball career, Koufax took the mound against fellow lefty Bob Hendley of the Chicago Cubs, and a pitcher’s duel for the ages ensued. The Cubs were held scoreless, while the Dodgers scored just one run, in the fifth inning. Dodger Lou Johnson walked to lead off the inning, and then advanced to second on a sacrifice. He stole third and then scored when the Cubs catcher fumbled one of Hendley’s throws. As it turned out, one run was all Koufax needed to bring home the victory. His fastballs, which seemed to rise as they reached the plate, whizzed past batters. His curveball was typically devastating, buckling batters at the knees, almost always crossing the plate as a strike after following its parabolic path. As he closed in on a perfect game, Koufax faced the middle of the Cubs order. He struck out Ron Santo and Ernie Banks in the eighth before striking out the side in the ninth to secure his first perfect game.

In addition to throwing his first and only perfect game, Koufax struck out a total of 382 batters in 1965, shattering Rube Waddell’s 1904 record by 32. He retired after the 1966 season at just 30 years old because of arthritis in his elbow.

Koufax won three Cy Young Awards (1963, 1965 and 1966), all of them unanimous.

He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1972. In 2007, the Modi’in Miracle of the Israel Baseball League made the 71-year old Koufax the final pick in the league’s inaugural player draft as a tribute to his legendary career and Jewish heritage.

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74 Responses to Back in California

  1. trublu4ever says:

    Tonights game is the one I really wanted to see but, even though it is on Prime Ticket in L.A., the Gnats are broadcasting on their local station and, of course, will black it out here! That’s just another reason to hate them! I don’t uunderstand why they need to black-out games if they are sell outs.

    That being said, GO DODGERS…..put the Gnats out of their misery!

  2. selltheteam says:

    With the Gnats 7 1/2 games out of first place, our attention turns to wresting second place out of their filthy grasp. With a sweep in the phone booth, we will be just 1 1/2 games behind them. Here’s what to look for:

    Game 1 – Kershaw vs. Lincescum – The classic matchup of our ace against their wannabe, or use-ta-be, ace. Lincescum has sucked big time over his last two starts, giving up nine earned runs in eleven innings against the D-Backs and Cubbies. Kershaw? Only lost last time out because of inferior sub Miles’ throwing error. The mighty Kershaw is on a roll and is in a tight race for the Cy Young award. The competition does not include Lincescum.

    Game 2 – Kuroda vs. Bumgarner – Lefty Bumgarner has pitched quality starts for eight of his last ten starts. His WHIP this year is 1.23, not too bad. Look for the Dodgers to load up on right handed hitters in their lineup, as Bumgarner’s OPS split against is tilted at .566 against lefties and .669 against righties. Kuroda will be trying to recover from his four home run drubbing at the hands of the Nats (no, the Washington Nats, not the SF Gnats).

    Game 3 – Lilly vs. Surkamp (or somebody else). Surkamp is a rookie lefty and has started just two games for the Gnats, pitching decently in both games. Watch out for high flying objects when Lilly pitches. He’s still trying to outdo Kemp on home runs.

    In summary, a sweep will be tough. On the other hand, even winning one of three will be a victory. Just one loss for the Gnats will make it that much tougher for them to try to catch the D-Backs this late in the season.

    • JhallWally says:

      Nice post Crash. Great pitching breakdown. G’Aints are hanging on by a thread and we are in the glorious position to cut that thread by taking this series with a couple of wins.

      Let’s stick the fork in the G’Aints!!! Go Dodgers!!!

  3. selltheteam says:

    Ethier, 29, won’t be eligible for free agency until after next season, but Colletti has said he wants to sign him and Matt Kemp to long-term contracts this winter.

    While reiterating his desire to remain with the Dodgers, Ethier was noncommittal when asked if he would be open to signing a multiyear extension at a time when his value could be relatively low.

    “I have no idea,” he said. “I’m concerned about getting this right, fixing this and making myself the best I can be for next year.”

    http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-0909-dodgers-andre-ethier-20110909,0,7268713.story

  4. JhallWally says:

    Hi’Ya Outsiders. I guess overall it was good that the 2nd game was rained out yesterday. Not good for Kemps pursuit of 40 HRs.

    Also, since the game will not be made up, there are only 19 games to go. And playing 161 games, there is no .500. We’re either a winning team or a losing team this year. I’m still hoping to finish on the winning side. We need to go 11-8 the rest of the way to finish at 81-80.

    It is interesting and not surprising (to me at least) that since the Dodgers have been rid of Uribe and Navarro, and stopped counting on Blake and Furcal to be major contributors, the team has played much better.

    I’m still not sure what to make of Loneys unexpected hot streak or the sudden resurgance of Juan Rivera since being DFA’ed by the Jays. Will Rivera be the next ill advised and overpriced 3 year Ned signing? Will they tender Loney a contract? I also keep getting the feeling that they are looking heavily at bringing back Miles in a larger capacity. Another Ned 3 year boner waiting to happen?

    Anyway, lots of questions. I’m hoping that they at least use the remaining games this season to logically start to answer some of them.

    As always, in my opinion, firing Ned is the best start to rebuilding the Dodgers back to a respectable team on the field. However they will never be a class organization again until Frank is ousted.

  5. lbirken says:

    Glad to see there is still some interest in this season. It was not all that long ago that many of us couldn’t wait for the season to be over things were so bad. Hard to say why the Dodgers are playing better the past few weeks and harder still to know if any of this means anything at all with regard to next season. Rivera certainly deserves a strong look but for three years? I think Loney has made a strong case for himself but we will see. What about Sands and Sellers? The remainder of the season is really important to those two players. Both are popular with the fans but can they produce at the major league level? And what will Kuroda do?

    Hopefully, Andre will get the treatment he needs and be ready for spring. I am not sure I would pay much attention to anything he says since whatever he says seems to rub some people the wrong way. He strikes me as a pretty smart guy who understands the business side of the game. He plays so much better with a chip on his shoulder so maybe the doctor will transplant one from his knee.

  6. selltheteam says:

    Lineup vs. Lincescum

    Gordon SS
    Loney 1B
    Kemp CF
    Rivera RF
    Miles 3B
    Sands LF
    Barajas C
    Sellers 2B
    Kershaw P

    The Gordon/Sellers DP combo rides again! Good luck, Dodgers!

  7. trublu4ever says:

    Okay, OTDers, Dee Gordon is faster than (be creative, ha, I know you will)?

  8. Loney in the #2 spot has revived this lineup..

    He was always supposed to be the #2 hitter, and now that Mattingly has been putting a lineup together with some thought, he finally has a potent 1-6..Add in Sands and a 2B and maybe we have a great lineup this season. If only Uribe would of panned through this season.

    Rivera and Loney need to be re-signed and Barajas as a backup..Rivera as the #4 OF or LF, depending on how Sands pans out, but Loney needs to come back unless we can get Sands to move over to 1st or get a Prince Fielder.

  9. Pluto’s a planet..Don’t tell Kersh it isn’t because he will probably chase you down and give you an offer you can’t refuse..lol..

    🙂

  10. trublu4ever says:

    Have a great game Kersh! Let’s get to Timmy early! GO, DODGERS, GO!

  11. trublu4ever says:

    Boy, nothing like a quick top of the first!

  12. Nellyjune says:

    Let’s Go Dodger’s, Let’s Go!!!

  13. trublu4ever says:

    Dee can hit and run but, he must tigten up his defense before next season starts.

  14. trublu4ever says:

    Finally making Lincescum throw some pitches.

  15. selltheteam says:

    Miles with an OPS of .559 hitting fifth – 7 RBIs in 13 games (48 ABs)

  16. vl4eccjr says:

    So now I guess Lincescum thinks he’s just slicker than whale shit in an ice flow now that he got out of that?
    Come on Dodgers!! Hammer that anorexic looking crack baby!!

  17. trublu4ever says:

    We blew another golden opportunity…damn!

  18. trublu4ever says:

    Back to the same old crap with RISP!

  19. trublu4ever says:

    Come on….kick it in gear! Kersh needs this win to still be in the hunt for the Cy Young!!

  20. nedisajerk says:

    Look like Kershaw was totally screw to Beltran. There no way Kershaw thrown 3 straight ball.

  21. trublu4ever says:

    Dbacks just won!

  22. trublu4ever says:

    Thank you Matty & Juan!

  23. JhallWally says:

    Alright Rivera and Kemp!!! Nice 2 out knock by Rivera!!!

  24. Nellyjune says:

    Go Dodgers!!!! Pleeeeeassse win this game!!!!

  25. vl4eccjr says:

    Niiiiiiiice!!! WTG Juan!

  26. trublu4ever says:

    Come on Jerry…now is the time to come through!

  27. trublu4ever says:

    Shit! This is when we really need Dre….he’s a gnat killer!

  28. JhallWally says:

    Need some runs here to get Kersh the win. Let’s go Dodgers!!!

  29. vl4eccjr says:

    Kersh pitching a gem. He really deserves the ‘W’ here, not another no decision!!

  30. JhallWally says:

    Veleeeeeeeeeeeeez!!!!!!

  31. trublu4ever says:

    Whew!!

  32. JhallWally says:

    Wah-Hoo!!! Velez speed. I guess he is good for something.

  33. 32and53fan says:

    Make it hold up Javy.

  34. vl4eccjr says:

    Carroll got an RBI?!! The polar ice caps are melting at an alarming rate!!!

  35. trublu4ever says:

    Wish we had more than a one run lead…..oh well, Javy can shut them down!

  36. trublu4ever says:

    A brilliantly pitched game by Kersh…..and, a save, through the heart of the order for Javy! NICE!!

    • vl4eccjr says:

      Definitely still in the running for the Cy Young!!
      Kennedy may have more wins at this time, but his ERA his still higher than Kersh, Doc, & Lee,
      It’s going down to the wire in the NL. We all know Verlander is a no brainer for the AL.

      • trublu4ever says:

        Exactly!

      • Wouldn’t a Lee/ Doc combo take them both out from the lead and with Kennedy playing for a playoff team, wouldn’t he be in the lead, and then a Kersh followed by Doc and then Lee

        1. Kennedy
        2. Kersh
        3. Doc
        4. Lee

        But then, factoring in SO’s, ERA and everything else, it would be:

        1. Kersh
        2. Doc
        3. Kennedy
        4. Lee

        I say this mainly because Doc and Lee play for a juggernaut that has some of the best players, and a Cy Young, at least in my sense, is the best player that makes due with what he has.

        Hence,

        1. Kersh
        2. Kennedy
        3. Doc
        4. Lee

  37. JhallWally says:

    TOTALLY SWEET!!! WTG JAVY!!! WTG KERSH!!!

    FU-Q G’AINTS!!!

  38. vl4eccjr says:

    WOO HOO! A great comeback win!

  39. Nellyjune says:

    Thank Goodness that game is over!!!!! Yeah!!!!

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