April Baseball in Minnesota

April 30, 2014

target-field-snow-removal

Tonight’s Lineup

Gordon 2B

Puig RF

Ramirez SS

Gonzalez 1B

Kemp CF

Ethier DH

Uribe 3B

Butera C

Crawford LF

 

Greinke pitching but not hitting.


All Star Game Ballot

April 25, 2014

on the Ballot:

Juan Uribe

Andre Ethier


Lineup Prognostication

April 24, 2014

1963WSG1

Here it comes. The Dodgers are facing a right-handed pitcher tonight. But last night, both Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig raked. Kemp had a breakout night with two doubles and a run scored. Puig had two RBI hits, including an amazing triple that might have been an inside the park home run, if only he would run immediately after hitting the ball. Meanwhile, all Andre Ethier put up were goose eggs, including an 0-2 with RISP.

So which players will be in Don Mattingly’s lineup tonight? The Phillies are starting right hander Kyle Kendrick against the Dodgers. His career statistics against lefties compared to righties are as follows (BAA/OBPA/SLGA/OPSA):

Lefties            .284/.351/.420/.737

Righties          .272/.313/.381/.669

 

As we can see, left handers on average have had a mild advantage. But let’s look in depth, as Donnie probably will, at the specific batters’ career numbers against Kendrick: (BA/OBP/SLG/OPS in PA(plate appearances):

Kemp              .400/.400/.400/.800 in 15 PA’s (six singles)

Puig                .833/.833/1.333/2.167 in 6 PA’s (double, triple)

Ethier             .273/.360/.636/.996 in 25 PA’s (with 2 homers)

Crawford        .333/.333/.333/.667 in 3 PA’s

Van Slyke        never faced him

 

Just for fun, here is the rest of the team:

Ramirez          .257/.278/.429/.706 in 36 PA’s (with 1 homer)

Gonzalez        .333/.500/.444/.944 in 12 PA’s

Uribe              .400/.400/.600/1.000 in 5 PA’s

Gordon           .000/.333/.000/.333 in 3 PA’s

In the outfield, Puig rakes, while Ethier and Kemp are very good against Kendrick. Carl Crawford hasn’t seen a lot of time against him. I’m guessing that Donnie will look at these numbers, not see any extra base hits from Kemp, and decide that it’s Kemp’s turn to ride the pine.

 

My Projection of Donnie’s Lineup:

Gordon 2b

Crawford lf

Ramirez ss

Gonzalez 1b

Puig rf

Ethier cf

Uribe 3b

Federowicz c

Haren p

 

My preferred lineup (okay, I stole it from Kahliforni):

Gordon 2b

Puig rf

Ramirez ss

Gonzalez 1b

Kemp cf

Ethier lf

Uribe 3b

Butera c (though we could say FedEx)

Haren p

 

The real meat of this lineup is 1-5, with Gordon setting the table and confusing the pitcher and catcher. Then Puig, Ramirez, Gonzalez, and Kemp just drive the ball like crazy. Ethier and Uribe chip in the best they can, then the 8-9 spots are basically just place-holders until we get back to the top of the lineup.


Last Place Phillies Coming to Town

April 21, 2014

kurodavictorino

Hit me here, not there.  Hit me here, not there.  Hit me in the ribs, don’t go for the head.

Oh, those were the days.  The Phillies were a good team.  Now they are languishing.

 

Meanwhile, the outfield conundrum continues.  I assume that Cliff Lee will be facing three right-handed outfielders, by name of Kemp, Puig, and Van Slyke.  Scott Van Slyke has really raked against lefties, leaving little chance that either Ethier nor Crawford will be starting tonight.

Kershaw and Ellis are on the mend, but still won’t be back for a little bit.  So the Dodgers’ job this series is to take two or three from the Phillies, while the Giants and Rockies battle it out for second place.  San Diego visits the red-hot Brewers.  The Diamondbacks are already eight games down.


Easter Greetings

April 19, 2014

dodgers easter eggs_ Go dodgers_ copy


Recap of the Worst Game of 2014 (So Far)

April 16, 2014

brandon-league_monkey

First, the good news:

  1. Juan Uribe scored both runs for the Dodgers.  He started the scoring with a solo home run in the second inning.  He later added a double and was pushed across the plate with Justin Turner’s single.  Uribe added a third hit, a single, later in the game.  Juan has been on a tear hitting-wise and has continued his stellar play defensively.  This game had me thinking that Uribe should be batting fifth, but then again, there was 2011-2012.
  2. Josh Beckett was able to survive a couple of major jams and actually pitched shutout ball for five innings despite walking five Giants.  He was definitely shaky, but much improved from his first start.  I’m actually looking forward to his third start.
  3. Matt Kemp hit his first single of the year!  Maybe this is a sign that he’s not pressing so hard, not trying to hit every ball out of the park.  Eventually, Mattingly will see the need to start Kemp in every game.  Later, Matt added a huge double, which may have been worthwhile, if only…

Now the bad news:

  1. The FedEx bunt.  It not only did not deliver, it took away a run by erasing Uribe just prior to the Matt Kemp double.  We could have seen Uribe scoring all three runs and won the game.  I can’t wait for AJ to return.  The FedEx/Butera platoon works on defense, but it sure puts a hole in the lineup.
  2. Chris Withrow let a run score on him, just after the team showed confidence in him by sending Paco to AAA rather than Withrow.  Of course, this was just the first time that he allowed a run this year, unlike…
  3. Kenley Jansen blew yet another save.  Dodger fans far and wide must be wondering just what is going on here.
  4. Andre Ethier was unable to convert a scoring opportunity directly after Yasiel Puig hit a one-out triple.  Ethier left him on third base with a strikeout, when “Not Every Day Dre” could have scored him with an ordinary fly ball.
  5. The non-appearance of Brian Wilson.  Of course, this is completely on Don Mattingly.  It looked like Mattingly was holding the Beard back for a possible save situation.  To me, it appeared that Mattingly was playing the extra innings just to lose the game when he inserted…
  6. Brandon League.  Why is he even still a Dodger?  When will Ned Colletti and Stan Kasten wake up, recognize the sunken costs and abject failure of the League contract, and designate him for assignment (DFA)?

Losing the first game of this Giants series after it had seemed we would win is especially troubling due to the fact that Paul Maholm is starting for us tonight.  That makes it doubly difficult to come out of San Francisco with a series victory.

 


Jackie Robinson

April 15, 2014

Jackie Robinson

The man!