Bloodied, But Unbowed

How many times have we heard Vinny say those words from Invictus, by William Ernest Henley?  Well, the previous line from that literary classic sums up the first two games: Under the bludgeonings of chance.  It was not as if the Cardinals blew away the Dodgers.  In fact, they only batted .134 and scored only four runs, two more than the Dodgers.  A clutch hit in each game could have reversed the results.  Zack and Clayton pitched great games… reminiscent of the days of Koufax and Drysdale.  Unfortunately, the offense also brings to mind those days of low scoring games.  I like the story about how Don, who flew ahead of the team to prepare for a start the next day, was told that Sandy had pitched a no-hitter.  Don then queried “Did we win?”

It is going to be difficult with injuries to Hanley and Andre, but this team already proved that they can rise to the occasion and win at a .800 pace.  Given that, winning 4 of the next 5 games is not an impossible goal.

243 Responses to Bloodied, But Unbowed

  1. 32and53fan says:

    Today is the first day of the rest of the season. Make it a good one, Dodgers.

  2. grizzy says:

    To state the obvious, Ryu needs to step up. With no Cap to rescue him, I’d say everyone was available but Nolasco, Greinke and Kershaw. And I’d think twice about Kershaw in a late inning save situation.
    32and53 has already pointed out the need for the hitting coaches to meet with our batters.

  3. JhallWally says:

    It is time to find your sack, or watch the WS….. I guess we will see…. I’m getting real tired of all the injuries and excuses that come with it… I long for the day when we don’t have to depend on old overpriced and injury prone players and we can develop and bring up good young players….. The old “Dodger Way”.

  4. crash24now says:

    Putting out a call for Rally Panties! We’re going to need them to win this game.

  5. Well we arrived at that time in this season when the end is approaching faster than we’d hoped. This Adam Wainwright awaits at the mound to put some finishing touches on our Dodgers as they hope to add another day onto the series so that we won’t face elimination tomorrow night. We’re hoping Hyun-Jin Ryu can hold off the Cardinals while the Dodgers can keep our hopes alive.
    My advice to all is to just take deep breaths when ever the nerves start to wiggle.

  6. trublu4ever says:

    Hanley…broken ribs….out for rest of post season….damn, damn, damn!

  7. kahliforni says:

    National media really taking it to Mattingley, especially the Dee Gordon substitution for AGon. Wacky post season, so far. If Hanley is really gone for good, then Ned will have to live–or die–with his bench and I’m not confident in the crew he’s assembled. What a crappy way to dissolve the season. First Kemp, then Ethier, now Ramirez. Geez, I hope Kasten makes winter decisions on the front office and manager based on competence, and not injuries to players.

  8. Dodger4life says:

    Let’s Go Dodgers, Let’s Go!!

  9. lbirken says:

    The Dodger way used to stress fundamentals but it also relied on signing talent and consistency in ownership and management. That all changed when Tommy resigned and then when O’Malley felt he had to sell. We all know what happened. Hopefully it will not take as long to build this organization back up as it took to bring it down but I do think current ownership understands the task at hand. Clearly the current roster is not built for the future but to win now and put butts in the seats. But it still rests on the players to perform no matter who is in charge.

  10. crash24now says:

    Hanley says he’s playing tonight. I don’t know how much he will be able to contribute, but I sure appreciate the effort. He’ll definitely be in pain all night.

  11. crash24now says:

    Every Day Dre is in the lineup today!

  12. crash24now says:

    Everybody’s in the pool! Let’s get some runs tonight! Let’s go, Dodgers!

  13. Hi Everyone
    This is a time when you have to concentrate on the here and now. I know it’s hard to forget the past and stop thinking of what might be ahead but this is a big game and the Dodgers must win in order to
    a stay away from elimination tomorrow night.
    LET’S GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. trublu4ever says:

    Got some disturbing news today…there is a report saying Mattingly is going to be offered an extension. Say it ain’t so!

  15. trublu4ever says:

    Much better.

  16. Put up another zero Ryu.

  17. crash24now says:

    Unacceptable! Our catcher hits a leadoff triple and does not score.

  18. kahliforni says:

    Would it have killed Mattingley to try a squeeze with Crawford? Is there a more boring manager in baseball?

    • nedisajerk says:

      Not with a slow runner in Ellis. How in the heck you can’t get a run in on a grounded or flyball with less than 2 outs should be no problem. I’m not a big fan with a slow runner on base and a busty suicide squeeze if Crawford miss even though I know he would make the prefect bunt to get that run in.

  19. Another fantastic inning from the man with the beard.

  20. trublu4ever says:

    We win!


  22. Dodger4life says:

    I say go with Nolasco, manana…

    • JhallWally says:

      I agree… Nice job with the Rally Panties, I think we needed them.

      My big question is, how did you get Tru’s panties???? Nice job…..

      • Dodger4life says:

        I have faith, that a rested Nolasco, against Lynn in his hometown, is a fair bet. I think that the team will take advantage of tonight’s opportunity and score runs. Giving them a rested Grienke, Kershaw and Ryu if needed.
        Wally you’ll have to ask, tru, on the rally panties, while you’re at it, ask her how come Ned has a special pair???
        The photoshop was corny, I just wanted to show that the whole team is important…
        I not sure, but Ned might think tru gave him a Pirate hat…

  23. lbirken says:

    Great experience at Dodger Stadium tonight. It was loud and the white towels were just annoying enough. The fans were in good sprits and moaned and groaned on every pitch that did not result in a Dodger hit or a strike from a Dodger pitcher. I must admit I was a bit annoyed that the Dodgers got only two runs in an inning in which they hit two doubles and a triple but such is the way of this team. At least tonight the Dodgers were able to take advantage of some opportunities unlike the previous two games. And Ryu was just great and was able to work out of the only real jam he faced. I have to think the Cardinals did not expect Ryu would shut them down but they have not hit much in this series. I heard on the post game show the Dodgers might go with Greinke tomorrow.

    • 32and53fan says:

      Thanks for letting us OTD members share vicariously the experience of being at the Stadium. Even though we at home get a better view of the action that the director chooses to put on the cable, there is nothing like being a part of an energized crowd. It is a non stop sensory experience with the wrap around video display, two giant video boards, wall mounted video displays, and booming ultra high fidelity speakers and of course the cheering, moaning, stomping noises of the crowd.

  24. kahliforni says:

    Looks as though Puig’s and AGon’s “celebrations” are getting into the Cardinals’ heads. Couldn’t be happier!

  25. crash24now says:

    I just re-watched Puig’s triple a few times. Man, that guy can motor around the bases. The Dodgers may not be ready for it this post season, but next year, they’ve got to move him into the top part of the lineup.

  26. Dodger4life says:

    Puig, celebrating a homerun, that hit off the wall, instead of running, isn’t exactly a good thing in my opinion, it worked in the end however. I am not sure who the other person was, Crawford maybe? That was loping to first base, before realizing he needed to run with more effort. This also worked out well. I would prefer to see the hustle first attitude myself.

    As far as AGon trying to show his team that he is fired up from the results of a play… I think that is all it was and it was done after the play was completed, not during.

  27. I do wish the media would lay off Yasiel for a while and stop trying to elicit demeaning quotes from our opposition about him. He’s just a big kid with lots of enthusiasm, full of emotion, trying to have fun. He will grow up one day. Let the kid have fun while he can.

  28. crash24now says:

    Nolasco or Greinke??? Pros & Cons??

    1. Pitch Nolasco, then give a few innings to Withrow, and let the rest of the bullpen finish it off. That makes Greinke, Kershaw and Ryu fresh for games 5, 6, and 7. Who needs a win in Game 4 if we have those guys ready to go for the next three games?

    2. Nobody wants to be down 3-1, and nobody trusts Nolasco to pitch a solid 5-6 innings. Pitch Greinke on short rest and trust that he can get the job done. Pitch Kershaw on short rest for Game 5. Then we are up 3-2 and just need a split in St Louis. Ryu starts one of those games. Maybe Ryu in Game 6 and Greinke in Game 7. Kershaw available in relief in Game 7.

    This is a real head-scratcher. I don’t know that Ryu is ready for short rest starting Game 6. I’m thinking we go with Nolasco, but he’s got to be on a super short leash. Maybe we could get two innings from JP Howell.

    • Dodger4life says:

      I still think that, Nolasco, gets the job done.

      I just watched last years game 5 with Lynn, the guy has some zip on his fastball, seems to get k’s off the plate. In the 4th inning of this game with 1 out, Pence hit a bouncer back at Lynn, in what should have been an inning ending double play, after a misguided throw bounced off of second base into the outfield, that ended up putting a runner across the plate, and runners on the corners. He never recovered after that. His pitch count was around 66 when he exited the game. Was he rattled… maybe? Was his big body tired from the long middle inning… maybe? The gnats didn’t do anything spectacular, other than extend the inning with a single off a hanging curve and execute what may have been a suicide squeeze off of a high fastball.
      We can beat this guy, with a solid game plan and a keen eye at the plate, in my opinion.

  29. grizzy says:

    Got what we needed from Ryu and good enough at bats to beat Wainwright. I’d sure like to see Uribe lay off that breaking stuff low and away, but again, it’s harder than it looks. For some reason I feel Uribe will be a deciding factor before this is over.
    I’d go with Nolasco on a short leash. We beat Wainwright, and we can beat Lynn.

  30. lbirken says:

    I was at the game last night and all I saw from Puig and Gonzalez were the same types of things we have seen from them before; Agon made the little “boom” hand signal and Puig showed a lot of emotion at third base. I did not notice what Puig did before running to first base because I was following the ball. None of what these players did was directed toward the opposition and frankly, I am sure every Dodger fan in the stadium, watching on TV or following the game on the radio or computer felt the same thing: finally some hits and runs after the long string of zeros. I understand the notion of just doing your job and not do anything to show up the opposition, umpires and the game itself but sometimes we have to remember these are emotional games and players have the same feelings as any other person. I do understand how opposing players and fans may not take kindly to such displays but that is their problem.

  31. kahliforni says:

    If you pitch Nolasco and lose, the best you could hope for would be game 7 in St. Louis, with a repeat of Ryu vs. Wainwright. Not sure I like that scenario. If you pitch Greinke and lose, now you’re REALLY hosed. Pitch Nolasco and win, I feel Dodgers win the series and advance. Pitch Greinke and win, you still got all three starters slated to pitch on 3-days rest, if all are needed. All that said, I’d pitch Nolasco. When he’s on (and he’ll be pumped in Dodger Stadium) he can be a shut-down kind of pitcher. Too bad he hasn’t pitched in weeks. But I bet Greinke starts…

  32. koufax1963 says:

    Pitch Nolasco, it “puts the team in the best position to win”, I expect good things from uribe tonight. He is due. Puig gets his HR tonight also.

  33. crash24now says:

    Hanley and Dre are in the lineup again today.

  34. crash24now says:

    Greinke says that he is not pitching tonight.

  35. crash24now says:

    Same lineup as yesterday, but Nolasco instead of Ryu.

  36. crash24now says:

    Let’s go, Dodgers. Let’s get the second win, right here, right now. Go Ricky!

  37. Hi Everybody
    Let’s see if the Dodgers can tie up this series tonight.
    GO DODGERS!!!!!!!!

  38. 32and53fan says:

    It is nice to hear Vinny while watching the TV with no sound. I was able to sync the picture and sound by rewinding the TV about 30 seconds on the DVR.
    So far, so good for Nolasco.

  39. Holliday gave that a ride,

  40. We need some more innings like that.

  41. trublu4ever says:

    Ugly game tonight!

  42. Well we’ll have to try again tomorrow.
    I’ll be at the Manhattan restaurant where I never saw the Dodgers win…..Yet.

  43. kahliforni says:

    Rick Monday…Kevin Kennedy…Cal Ripken Jr….all very puzzled by the lack of any small ball from DB—run and hit, hit and run, steals, “must” steals, pressuring the defense, pressuring the pitcher. As for me, I’m always sad as the end of Dodger season looms, but I’m angry, too, at DB’s timid, tentative, conservative style. I’m not piling on; I’ve felt this way from the get-go three years ago. Nice guy. No way DB returns. But I’m still hoping the Dodgers can shake the world in spite of their manager. Go get ’em Greinke!!!

    • Dodger4life says:

      I am on board with the Mattingly is a bad tactician thoughts. How much have we improved on the base paths since signing Lopes. I’m just, guessing here… but, I would say our running game has taken a step backwards since then.

  44. I think the Dodgers ought to think of tomorrow’s game as just another game and forget about what’s at stake, I think they’d play better.

  45. And just when I thought I was already depressed by the loss tonight, I just read that Donnie Boy is coming back for 2014. Gawd, what a downer!!!

  46. lbirken says:

    I was at Tuesday night’s game and felt the crowd was not quite as energetic as the night before. And the blue towels given to the fans as they entered the stadium had nothing printed on them and did not seem as annoying as the white towels (which, according to what I heard on the post game show driving home, will return for Wednesday’s game). The noise level was great during the 4th inning Dodger rally but as Vin said on the radio (we had one with us), Holliday’s homer sucked a lot energy and enthusiasm out of the crowd and I could feel it.

    I think Nolasco’s performance was about what could be expected from someone who had not seen game action in a long time and knew he was pitching because he was the only option. Not sure if this had any effect on him or his teammates. I heard either on the pre game show or from Vin that Lynn had problems in the first three innings so it was my hope the Dodgers could get to him early and score a bunch of runs to take some of the pressure of Nolasco. But alas the Dodgers fell back to the pattern of getting the hits, especially doubles, at the wrong time. Uribe had an awful game tonight at the plate and I think his at bat in the second inning when he popped up with runners on first and second with one out set the tone for the rest of the game. After Uribe made out, A.J. walked to load the bases only for Nolasco to strike out looking on three pitches to end the inning. Uribe then came up in the 4th inning with runners at first and second and no outs and hit a long fly ball to right that moved up a runner that eventually scored but the “what ifs” of this at bat are many. Schumaker ended the inning with a double play. The Dodgers did score 2 runs in this inning but had the opportunity to score more. Uribe hit into a double play of his own in the 6th and struck out to end the game. Don’t mean to come down on Uribe; he has been a pleasant surprise this season but it just shows how the fortunes change in this game. Just look at Puig: he had a great time at the plate until the ninth inning when he was needed most.

    The other bad at bat came in the 5th inning after Crawford led off with a single. Mark Ellis popped out. Should he have bunted? I will leave that for discussion but this at bat was wasted as it did not move the runner. Of course, Hanley Ramirez did not help matters with 3 strike outs but I am not sure he could even physically swing the bad. Should he have been out there? I will let him make that choice and not fault him for his desire since we all know how valuable he has been.

    I do not believe it is Donnie’s “fault” the Dodgers are in the position they find themselves after 4 games. For the most part the pitching has been good but the Cardinal pitching has been better. Neither team is hitting much but the Cardinals have made the most of their chances, and tonight they finally broke through with the long ball. Whether you think the Dodgers should run more, bunt or whatever, (and I think having Molina behind the plate has impacted what the Dodgers want to do), the players still have to perform. The Dodgers needed someone to get the big hit, avoid the double play, move the runner, etc. They have not done that. They get the doubles with no one on base. Yesterday they had two doubles and a triple in one inning and scored only 2 runs. It is too much to expect Dodger pitching to shut out the opponent every game. I know the Dodgers won a lot of games this season but they struggled with runners in scoring position. Would the Dodgers have been more effective with a healthy Ethier and Ramirez? Perhaps but that is just not the case. Someone else has to step up and so far no one has been able.

    I don’t think this is because the Dodgers are not trying. I heard someone say the Dodgers are not winning because they don’t want it “bad enough”. Ridiculous. They are winning because they are not doing enough to win.

  47. Dodger4life says:

    We shall see tonight what these guys have deep inside…

  48. JhallWally says:

    Boo-Hoo, losing streak!!! Nolasco pitched well enough.. Our offense sucks… Without Hanley, this team just can’t get it done….

    Puig is over rated and in over his head. Especially in the playoffs against the best of the best…

    If Dildon and Nedcompoop keep their jobs, I will be very disappointed….. They both suck………

  49. koufax1963 says:

    What is it about game 4 of the NLCS, we Just can’t win that one to go even. Nolasco pitched well, one bad pitch, and pooof, but that should not of been it. NO small ball, and in these close games would of shifted a game our way I think. This is why Donnie must change or go, Uribe, I was wrong, he did not deliver. and the punto pick off, ah can’t even type that word. So I do feel better anticipating game 5 compared to 08 and 09, lets pull off a sweep, I know that is in the back of the Cardinal’s collective mind.

  50. crash24now says:

    It ain’t over til the fat lady sings.

    With Greinke, Kershaw, and Ryu starting the next three games, the Dodgers still have a chance to win it. But it won’t be easy.

    Also, it just isn’t likely. The way baseball goes – and we saw the proof in Games 1 and 2 – just because you have your aces going against their non-aces, does not guarantee victory. Let’s put some probabilities on these. Let’s just say that with Greinke we have a 60% chance of winning. Let’s just say that with Kershaw, even in their stadium, we have a 60% chance of winning. Then, if we do win Games 5 & 6, all bets are off in Game 7, and, optimistically, give ourselves a 50% chance of winning Game 7 with Ryu against Wainwright.

    Given the above, we have a 60% x 60% x 50% = 18% chance of winning the NLCS. This is likely overstated.

    So, it’s not over. We have a chance. A small chance, but, heck, we’re still alive.

  51. For a while there I thought this team was going to pull it off but I guess our hopes were a little to high. They matched the Cardinal pitching pretty well, not surprisingly, but the Cards were hitting better in clutch situations. Unless this thrend changes, The Dodgers will be home for the World Series as usual.
    I’ll be at the restaurant again with TrueblueWill, not commenting during the game.
    Good Luck Dodgers!!!!!!!!

  52. crash24now says:

    Lineup – Everybody’s in the pool again, including the achy Hanley and Dre, day game after a night game.

    Let’s get some runs!

  53. messagebear says:

    Despite Punto’s pickoff, you have to wonder if having him at 100% isn’t better than Hanley at the level he was showing at bat last night, especially in the middle of the productive part of the lineup. It won’t be on Hanley if he strikes out again at crucial times today; it’ll be on Donnie for not being able to control his club and personalities. Of course, I personally think that Donnie should be SHOT before game time, if not sooner, much less be given another season or more with the Dodgers.

  54. kahliforni says:

    Let’s just have Kevin Kennedy and Don Mattingley simply switch jobs…Kennedy can manage in an aggressive, proactive style, and Donnie Baseball can field phone calls and analyze real managers. Might actually help him land a new managerial gig someday, somewhere far, far away.

    • trublu4ever says:

      Sounds good to me!

    • 32and53fan says:

      I wouldn’t mind Kennedy. He always seems to make sense, was brought up through the Dodger system, and was/is friends with my namesake, Drysdale and Koufax. He would bring a much more aggressive, National League style, even though he managed the Rangers and Red Sox.

  55. crash24now says:

    Let’s Go Dodgers, Let’s Go!

  56. crash24now says:

    Thanks to the great Dodger in the sky for double plays that go our way.

  57. lbirken says:

    Dodged a bullet, but can we take advantage?

  58. crash24now says:

    Greinke is settling down, let’s get some runs in the second!

  59. crash24now says:

    Come on, Big Game Juan!

  60. lbirken says:

    Need more runs.

  61. lbirken says:

    How frustrating for A.J. even though Puig too third. Need runs, not outs.

  62. crash24now says:

    Hell yeah, Greinke helps himself!

  63. lbirken says:

    Zach comes through. Come on Carl, keep it going.

  64. lbirken says:

    Glad for the two runs but once again the Dodgers let a bigger inning get away.

  65. crash24now says:

    Let’s go Defense and Greinke – shut ’em down!

  66. koufax1963 says:

    lets see Han Ram and Dre are in for hitting, dre can hit but can run in to a DP too, Han Ram hasn’t shown he can hit, how long does donnie keep the hitting team in before he switches to a defensive team? certainly we need more runs! can we ever have enough. Im sure donnie is all over that.

  67. koufax1963 says:

    whoops guess we keep the offensive group in

  68. crash24now says:

    The wheels are coming off?

  69. crash24now says:

    Thank you, Yadier, for your second GIDP of the game. That staunched the flow.

    More runs from the Dodger offense, please!

  70. lbirken says:

    Zach is fighting it today. And go figure that Beltran hits another ball to the center field wall that a less than 100% Ethier cannot get to.

  71. crash24now says:

    I’d like to see Puig playing several games in CF in 2014 spring training. He could cover a lot of ground if only he were trained correctly.

  72. crash24now says:

    The double play giveth, the double play taketh away.

  73. crash24now says:

    A-Gon! (But damn the preceding double play)

  74. lbirken says:

    Finally, a Dodger home run but wouldn’t you know, there would be no one on at the time. But it certainly came at a good time to get the crowd excited. Make it hold up.

  75. crash24now says:

    Can Greinke make it through the seventh inning? I don’t wanna see Belisorryo nor Marmol today.

  76. lbirken says:

    Carl Crawford hits one!

  77. crash24now says:

    Crawford, baby! Wow, he’s having a great post season.

  78. trublu4ever says:

    Let’s get a shut-down inning, Zack.

  79. lbirken says:

    Another good inning from Zach.

  80. lbirken says:

    The Cards have made good use of Choate in this series. Just another move for Matheney that continues to work for him. Had no idea the Cards had such a collection of arms.

  81. 32and53fan says:

    Keep shutting them down, Greinke.

  82. lbirken says:

    Big inning for Zach. Punto now at short.

  83. crash24now says:

    Way to go, Greinke!

  84. crash24now says:

    Let’s get some insurance runs here.

  85. lbirken says:

    Another solo home run, this time from A.J.

  86. crash24now says:

    Shut ’em down, Wilson!

  87. crash24now says:

    Five more outs and we go to St. Louis!

  88. lbirken says:

    Who could have ever imagined Dodger fans would cheer the beard. I hope the Dodgers can sign him for next season.

  89. trublu4ever says:


  90. crash24now says:

    Freakin’ A-Gon! Are you kidding me? That’s a nice insurance run.

  91. lbirken says:

    Can’t help myself from wondering how different this series would be if the Dodgers could have hit one out yesterday.

  92. crash24now says:

    Come on, Kenley! Bear down, and shut ’em down!

  93. koufax1963 says:

    Agon has not stopped, every dodger should take a cue, get a clue and stick with this momentum like glue!

  94. crash24now says:

    Thanks again, Yadier. Two more outs and we go to St. Louis!

  95. lbirken says:

    Never easy for this team.

  96. crash24now says:

    Oh boy. Let’s bite them nails.

  97. trublu4ever says:

    Whew,,,,on to see another day!

  98. koufax1963 says:

    Oh my god tequila and heart medication, Jansen needs a rest, hope he isnt blown out, bloodied but unbowed

  99. lbirken says:

    Got a break on that last strike. No Cardinal celebration in our house. Good sign seeing the media converge on the Dodger side for post game coverage.

  100. crash24now says:

    See you at 5:37 pm PT on Friday. Get lots of rest, Hanley, Andre, Kenley, Brian, and AJ.

    We can do this! Kershaw in Game 6, then anything can happen in Game 7!

    • lbirken says:

      I can use the rest myself.

      • kahliforni says:

        I’m jealous you saw two games. I made a vow if the Dodgers get into the World Series, that I’d buy a highly-inflated cheap ticket for one of the games. In the 1988 World Series my buddy owned a box three rows from the field. He offered me any except Game 1. Like a pig, I chose Game 6, figuring a pivotal ballgame. Lesson learned…Dodgers beat A’s in an improbable five games.

        • lbirken says:

          I have been to only one World Series game back in 1978. I was not in the ticket partnership I am in now back in 1988 although I was offered tickets to game one. I could not use them as I had a conflict. That will never happen again.

  101. I watched yesterdays game from that Manhattan restaurant. The Malibu Diner and it was good to see others also rooting for the Dodgers, in fact I didn’t see anybody rooting for the Cardinals.
    It was great to see A.Gon blast two and CC & AJ do the same once each, Greinke struggling but managing to be overall strong, The Beard do his thing, Kenley close it out but most of all the Dodgers win the damn thing and stay alive.
    Nothing could be finer than to have Clayton hold off elimination and go for the tie. BUT we need the offense to give him the support that he’s going to need..

  102. trublu4ever says:

    Looking forward to Kid K

  103. crash24now says:

    Dodgers need a potent offense to score the runs. Let’s take a look:

    Crawford – has had a great post season so far. Get on base and get moving. Don’t worry about the dingers. All four of his dingers came at Dodger Stadium.

    Mark Ellis – Move Crawford along. Don’t hit into a DP. His hitting has been okay so far.

    Hanley – If he could get two bloop singles like he did in Game 3, I’d be happy.

    Gonzalez – Needs to continue his hot hitting in the post season. Hard to believe that this is just his second post season appearance.

    Ethier – Below the Mendoza line. Get hot, ‘Dre!

    Puig – No hits in St Louis yet. Yet. I’m looking for a multi hit game tomorrow.

    Uribe – Great against the Braves, not so much against the Cards. This is your clutch time, Big Game Juan!

    AJ Ellis – Continue your hot hitting.

    Kershaw – Needs at least one single to keep up with Greinke.

  104. nedisajerk says:

    I wonder if Crawford is an option at CF and could they shift Ethier to LF?

  105. Dodger4life says:

    Is it game time yet??

  106. messagebear says:

    Who better than Kersh to have in this “must win” position.
    I’m counting on at least getting to a game 7, and then a single timely hit can make the difference – you can never tell who will provide that timely hit.

  107. lbirken says:

    I too would not consider Crawford for center field; he is barely good enough for left. I say go with what got you here even if those players are not 100%. Every interview with former players I have heard for the past two weeks say the same thing: no one is 100% by this time of year and some have even suggested fatigue has been a big factor. Some players can handle the challenges and pressure of these big games better than others but anything can happen.

    I am also getting tired of all the silly talk about how the Dodgers play the game versus the Cardinals with regard to emotions. I understand the idea of doing something in sports as if you had done it before but for some of these players, they have never been in this position. Have we become so sensitive we cannot tell the difference between good clean fun and unsportsmanlike behavior? I do agree that some behavior may cross the line but so far I have not seen that happen. If a guy makes a big play, great, show some emotion and get off the field or get set for the next play. Stop staring down umpires and officials. These are supposed to be games, right?

  108. crash24now says:

    Lineup time – Hanley out, Puig batting cleanup

    Time for Puig to put his big boy pants on, and do some damage offensively. He needs to drive the ball like he did early in the season and like Hanley did when Hanley was able.

    Also, it’s time for the rest of the offense to get on, move the runners, and perform with RISP. Everybody’s got to participate, this time including Punto (without being a TOOTBLAN).

  109. Dodger4life says:

    I think it is the correct move for Hanley to sit, at least to begin with. There is also plenty of firepower left with AGon, Crawford, Uribe, Puig, and Dre in the lineup. Mistakes on defense may be a big factor in tonight’s outcome. Puig and AGon need to set the table as far as getting on base and the supporting cast needs to take advantage of this as well.
    In any event it should be an exciting, and suspenseful game.
    Let’s Go Dodgers, Let’s Go!!

  110. Dodger4life says:

    You can call it what you want, but I call it messin’ with the kid
    Give Em’ Hell Tonight Boy’s!!!

  111. lbirken says:

    Just heard on the pre game show Hanley back in the lineup hitting 4th.

  112. I keep asking myself a question that I can’t seem to answer.
    Is this the last Dodger game this year? I guess I’ll just I’ll just have to find out.
    I found out that I had only one blank scoresheet, but I figured I’ll wait until tomorrow to see if I need any more.
    GO KERSHAW!!!!! GO DODGERS!!!!!!

  113. koufax1963 says:

    I see Donnie has not learned small ball, no bunt, therefore DP!
    Score one run.

    • kahliforni says:

      I think Ramirez stole second base in the Braves series. I can’t think of any other occasion to move a runner (except the standard-procedure sacrifice bunt). Is it possible a National League manager could go ten games without a single hit-and-run or run-and hit???????? Stay tuned…

  114. koufax1963 says:

    observation: what Protection will Hanley provide A gon?

  115. I feel like the end is drawing near.

  116. koufax1963 says:

    what every media guy said, puig is young, his inexperience could lead to critical gaffes, ouch

    • lbirken says:

      Sorry, Puig has been here since June. By now he should understand he has to play smarter. So I am tired of hearing about his inexperience.

  117. lbirken says:

    It will be interesting to see if the Dodgers can mount any kind of offense after giving up the 4 runs. That had to be a big blow to their confidence.

  118. The Cards really lit-up Kershaw tonight.

  119. lbirken says:

    Disappointing performance tonight from Kershaw. Hard to watch the Dodgers get outpitched this series. The Cards have Clayton’s number. The way things are going he would have needed to throw a shutout to have a chance to win.

  120. 32and53fan says:

    Wrong… Now is the time to panic.

  121. lbirken says:

    Nice touch by Cards fans giving Schumaker a standing ovation.

  122. crash24now says:

    Would a rain shortened game be such a terrible thing?

  123. Can’t say this team deserved to win the pennant. Any hitting at all though and they’d have won this series in 5, but they’d have gotten totally destroyed by Detroit or Boston IMO.

    3 out of the last 6 years now this team couldn’t take the next step. First two they could hit and couldn’t pitch. This time they could pitch and couldn’t hit. Same old story, nothing’s ever in sync.

    But hey, we get Donnie again next year.

  124. lbirken says:

    The frustrating thing about this game is the trouble the Dodgers had scoring runs the first two games. The Cards had trouble too but still won those games.

  125. crash24now says:

    Makes me wonder how different the outcome would be had Hanley not got hit in the ribs by the Joe Kelly pitch in Game 1.

  126. All in all it was a great season. We won the N.L West and anytime we make the postseason has to be considered a success.
    This team is good enough to make it back next year.
    Ownership will make sure of that.

  127. crash24now says:

    Oh, by the way, I think I heard the fat lady singing.

  128. crash24now says:

    The suffering is over.

  129. lbirken says:

    I thought this would be a close game just like all the others. It was an exciting and entertaining season with lots of drama. Not ready for it to end but such is the way it goes. Sorry for Vin and I will miss his voice as we start thinking about next season.

  130. Maybe next year this organization will learn to play out the year and understand it pays to have the home field advantage. 4-1 vs. 1-4.

  131. kahliforni says:

    Kasten will pray Kemp gets healthy and stays healthy, then he needs to find a third baseman and a second baseman. Who knows if Billingsley and Beckett can contribute? Hopefully Kasten calls Ned into his office and tells him he’s got a great promotion for him, Director of Player Aesthetics or something. Ned’s bench wasn’t ready for prime time. Please see April, May and September when they got the lion’s share of work. And lastly, Donnie. Do the Guggenheim’s really want to see an encore performance?

  132. lbirken says:

    I know there will be a lot of discussion about this season and it was fun, challenging, exciting, frustrating and more. I got my money’s worth. But it is time to look to next season. I hope the players have a good off season and everyone gets healthy. I hope this organization can figure out how to get to the next level and I hope it can figure out how to drive in runs.

  133. 32and53fan says:

    Most of the key position players will be back next year as well as the top three starters. If Billingsley and Beckett can return and be productive, the pitching might be even better than this year. I hope they can hold on to Brian Wilson, even give him closer role if that is necessary to retain him.
    Uribe will probably sign a multi-year deal somewhere else since Ned should only offer him a one year deal at most.
    Mark Ellis had been a journeyman player at second so it would be nice to get a little more production there.

    It has been a fun ride this year. I have enjoyed reading all of your comments, even if I haven’t been as active as most of you. In a few weeks, it will be time to fire up the hot stove and contemplate what 2014 will bring. Thanks to all of you for keeping the OTD torch burning brightly.

  134. trublu4ever says:

    Last night was the first time all season, I turned a Dodger game off before it was over….I knew it was pretty bad when Kersh (even though he didn’t have it last night) came out for BeliSORRYo (and boy, was he!) ….so, I decided not to put myself through any more misery. Some think we had a good season…..I think coming close but, no cigar, is not my idea of good! I hope and pray management thinks so too and changes their mind on keeping Dopey Donnie on board.

    • JhallWally says:

      It was very disappointing Tru…. Kersh just didn’t have it…

      Really sucks that we have to endure this heart crushing loss and have Dildon back for another year… Good Grief!!!!!

  135. JhallWally says:

    So, how do we get better?????? And get to the WS next year.

    • I’d start with a new manager. Gotta get rid of one of the OFers (either Crawford or Dre) for a 2B or 3B. Need a better than scrub bench. Need to play an aggressive National League style. Need to get younger. Need to play to win all year. Need a new third base coach who knows when to send and when to hold a runner…

  136. Dodger4life says:

    Last evenings game was a tough one to watch, no doubt. This doesn’t mean that I haven’t enjoyed the season as whole though. I say this because it is just a game to me, entertainment, albeit the one that consumes most of my attention. I wish things would have had a different outcome, but with the rejuvenation of spring, my excitement and hopes will live on, God willing, as always.
    I know this isn’t the popular vote here on this blog. I think Donnie did an okay job with this club, I will agree that he has things he can improve upon, just as we all do. I just find it hard to replace a guy that the team looks up too, a team that came from the cellar earlier in the year, to the doorstep of the World Series. I totally get why most here would prefer another manager though.

    Even if Donnie gets an extension, which I suspect he will… he still has to perform and hopefully improve. Managers only remain if they produce. I do think it would benefit Donnie to have a better bench coach, someone with knowledge of the National League style of play.

    I hope young Mr. Puig takes note of some schooling, on how he can improve his game in the offseason. I’m hopeful Kemp can rebound and bounce back in 2014. I think the way Hanley fought through the rib injury was admirable. I enjoyed Juan Uribe this season as well. Kershaw should get another Cy Young for his performance in 2013. Greinke was a big asset and a sight for sore eyes. Ryu was probably the guy I was pulling for to have a good year the most and all in all, I think he didn’t disappoint us any.

    And as I have every year, since, we have been together blogging about our passion for the Greatest Organization in all of Baseball, I have enjoyed everyone here… Thanks for taking the time to make this an enjoyable place to discuss what drives us, annoys us, energizes us, or simply just makes us drink, for better or worse.
    We’re gonna win it all again someday… this I know and this is also non negotiable!!!

    Here’s to 2013!!!

    Cheers Y’all!

    Down the Hatch!!!

    May we all enjoy some of the finest Baseball and Libations ever produced in 2014!!

  137. kahliforni says:

    Just trying to be helpful if the Dodgers truly bring back Donnie:

    Hit-and-Run: A high risk/high reward offensive strategy used in baseball. It uses a stolen base attempt to try to place the defending infielders out of position for an attempted base hit.

    Run-and-Hit: The runner breaks as if for a stolen base and the batter has the option to swing or not, depending on the runner’s jump and the quality of the pitch.

    Suicide Squeeze: A maneuver consisting of a sacrifice bunt with a runner on third base. The batter bunts the ball, expecting to be thrown out at first base, but providing the runner on third base an opportunity to score.

    Safety Squeeze: The runner at third does not take off until the batter makes contact bunting, waiting for more certainty that the ball will go to a location from which it will be difficult for the fielding team to make an out at home plate.

    Stolen Base: A baserunner successfully advances to the next base while the pitcher is delivering the ball to home plate.

    Hope this is educational. No need to thank me, Donnie.

    • It’ll never happen with Donnie managing. He bunts when he should have them swing away, and swings away when they should bunt. He clogs up the basepaths with Clydesdales and has his thoroughbreds hit behind them. He plays AL ball waiting for the 3-run bomb that never comes. He never plays a set line-up and has players hit in an asinine order. He routinely plays giveaway games.

      Donnie may be a great manager of personalities, but as a baseball tactician, he’s strictly little league.

      • JhallWally says:

        He’s not even little league…. He is the worst tactical manager in baseball… He’s good in the clubhouse, but he sucks on the field….. I hope they let him walk.. Although, I fear, we are gonna be stuck with him and Ned… I’m not happy about it… I don’t think we will win a championship until they are both gone…

  138. kahliforni says:

    Works for me…bye Donnie.

  139. Dodger4life says:

    I just wanted to report the first Hot Stove news of the season…
    I ran into a pound of bacon, with my truck this morning…
    Yummy, yummy, road kill!!

  140. kahliforni says:

    I’m not sure I can stomach watching even one inning of the WS. Of all the people potentially leaving, I’ll miss The Beard the most. What a stud.

    • This is another irritation I have with Ned – the amount of yearly turnover in players on the 25 man roster. How are you ever going to build anything when you’re constantly tinkering and reshaping 1/3 to 1/2 your ML roster?

  141. JhallWally says:

    If Dildon had a clue, we could have won this thing… He is the worst tacticle manager in baseball… We are totally screwed if they keep Didon and Nedcompoop….

    • Yup. Donnie’s like a general in charge of the motor pool that get’s promoted to the front lines. He might be able to get you to the battle, but he has no idea what to do once the shooting starts.

  142. kahliforni says:

    Jim Leyland: Three-time manager of the year, one World Series championship with the Marlins (one of fourteen seasons with a National League team). Kasten? Ned? Pick up the phone…now! Donnie will understand.

  143. We signed Alexander Guerrero from Cuba – second baseman. We shall see what happens next . . . probably will not be bringing Mark Ellis back, which is a good thing. Guerrero has a good amount of pop in his bat and hits well. Keeping my fingers crossed 🙂

    • Hope so. Most of the rest of the team has poop in their bats from what I saw.

    • crash24now says:

      This is Step #1 in improving the Dodgers for 2014. Step #2 will be garnering a good third baseman. Step #3 will be getting another very good starting pitcher to go along with Kershaw/Greinke/Ryu.

      Steps 4/5/6?

      4. Make sure Kemp is healthy and stays healthy all year long. Get him at least close to his hitting ability from 2011 (he showed signs in the middle of 2013 but couldn’t stay off the DL).

      5. Teach Puig the finer points of playing the outfield, hitting the cutoff man, etc.

      6. Get Hanley on a regimen where he can stay healthy the whole year. Make sure his hammies are in good condition. Take care of his back.

      If Kemp, Puig, and Hanley are all beasts at the plate in 2014 that would be a sure cure for our offensive woes.

  144. lbirken says:

    After a few days of wondering what could have been and reflecting on the season, I have to admit it was fun. Even A.J. Ellis said it was fun being a Dodger. Players always downplayed the ownership squabbles of the McCourt era but it had to have some negative effect. New owners, new ideas, remodeling the stadium including the clubhouse and other player amenities had to impact the players. The injuries did play a big part in this team’s fortunes but clearly the Dodgers played way below their capabilities until the end of June, played way over until the end of August, and then for some strange reason played below again in September. But it was fun and exciting to follow this team and talk about players, strategy, wins, losses, lineups and such but not talk much about ownership and things off the field.

    I tend to agree with what I have read above and in the media about what the Dodgers need to do for next season but clearly the nucleus will be back a year older and hopefully healthy. I see a lot of talk about bunting and running but unless some surprise changes are made, this team just does not have a lot of speed on the bases other than Puig and Crawford. Kemp has speed but we don’t know if he will ever be the same player and the same might be true with Hanley. If Kemp I healthy going into Spring training and the Dodgers still have Crawford, Ethier and Puig, what will happen? Donnie never really had to face this challenge this season. By the way, I am still not sold on Puig. He seems to have a lot of physical ability but his baseball sense seems non-existent. He had trouble adjusting to how he was being pitched and yes, I do understand this may have a lot to do with how little he has played in the U.S. So he still is a question mark for me.

    We also have to wonder how Billz and Beckett will respond to their injuries and recoveries so this is yet another question mark. I agree that the bench needs to be upgraded but that is a crapshoot as well. I suppose we will just have to wait and see what happens. At least Vinny will be back for at least one more season.

    I did read something about a comment made by Pedro Martinez where he basically criticized Mattingly for how he handled Kershaw this season. First, I have to add that I found the TBS “experts” mostly added little to the analysis either before of after games. I still don’t understand why it takes 4-5 talking heads to tell me what to expect or what I just saw. But anyway, Pedro felt Donnie let Kershaw pitch too many innings and predicted this will lead to an injury. I suppose this should not be too unexpected in the pitch count era but I cannot imagine any manager limiting Kershaw when he is your best chance to win. I could understand if a manager asked his best pitcher to pitch on short rest a number of times late in the season in order to secure wins but Donnie did that only in the playoffs. I recall hearing similar criticisms of Tommy Lasorda with Valenzuela. Walt Alston relied heavily on Sandy Koufax who did have arm problems but we don’t know if the team knew. The bottom line is getting wins, not at all costs to be sure, but in a smart way. We saw all the controversy when the Nationals limited Strasburg last year. Does anyone here think Donnie misused Kershaw?

  145. trublu4ever says:

    Twitter is abuzz….Mattingly is gone! Please be true!

    • That would be step one in the right direction.

    • lbirken says:

      I just heard on the radio Mattingly made some interesting comments at a news conference with Ned sitting next to him. Apparently Donnie’s contract had an option for vesting if the Dodgers won the NLDS. So when asked if he would be back, Donnie mentioned the option but also talked about not wanting to be a lame duck manager again and he did not like that his contract was not extended sometime during the season. I do not think a decision has been made yet so Donnie could certainly be back but unless he gets some sort of multi year deal, I doubt now he would be comfortable taking another one year deal. There was also a question about the coaches. Donnie said he would want all of them back while Ned was non committal. Stay tuned.

      While some may think this is a positive development, I do not. Donnie chose to make public his situation, perhaps surprising Ned and Stan Kasten. We know now that Donnie’s job was in jeopardy earlier in the season when things were not going well but even when things turned around, upper management still did not seem confident enough to discuss a contract with Donnie. If they want Donnie, then work out a deal. If they don’t, the vested option means nothing except perhaps some payoff money. But I think it is embarrassing for the Dodgers to have Donnie spill his guts in public, something one would not expect from him but perhaps understandable since Kasten and Ned don’t seem to be sure what they want. It would have been far easier if the Dodgers had lost the series to the Braves and perhaps we can assume Donnie would have been gone for sure if that had happened. Even in this public scenario, Donnie did not say anything about being excited to get back to work preparing for next season. Now Donnie seems to have forced the situation and in a way, make his bosses look bad in the process no matter what they do. I find this all very surprising.

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