Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Congratulations to the Royals, World Series Champions

The Royals celebrating after their Game 7 walkoff victory.

The MVP. What an inspiration.

World Series Game 7 Thread: Enemies in Orange vs. Brothers in Blue, 7p

@TheRealJGuts vs. Thud.

If the Dodger fan in you hates that the FH's are in the World Series again, then the baseball fan in you can at least appreciate tonight's Game 7, in which the home team has a decided advantage AND BETTER WIN IT DAMMIT GO BLUE

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

World Series Game 6 Thread: WhenWillThisEnd, 5p

Yordano Ventura (0-0, 3.38) vs. Jake Peavy (0-1, 7.20).

Let's just get this over with.

Logan's Run...ning to Padres

Looks like Andrew Friedman now has quite a "renewal! renewal!" on his hands, now that Logan White has left the Dodgers for the Padres:

LOS ANGELES -- The San Diego Padres have hired longtime Dodgers amateur scouting director Logan White to their front office, sources told ESPN on Monday.

The feeling around baseball when the Dodgers hired Andrew Friedman to be their president of baseball operations was that he would want to bring in his own people in key front-office positions. With White departing, he'll have at least three top positions to fill.

It is not clear which position White will fill with San Diego.

In Los Angeles, Friedman has vacancies at general manager, amateur scouting director and farm director. The Dodgers' previous general manager, Ned Colletti, was reassigned to an advisory role, and farm director DeJon Watson left before Friedman's hiring to work for Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Dave Stewart.

White was involved in drafting Clayton Kershaw and Matt Kemp, among others, and with the signing of Cuban defector Yasiel Puig two summers ago in Mexico, where he also found one of the Dodgers' top minor league prospects, pitcher Julio Urias. White leaves the Dodgers with three of baseball's top 20 prospects on his résumé -- Urias, outfielder Joc Pederson and infielder Corey Seager.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

World Series Game 5 Thread: Sluggerrr @ Lou Seal, 5p

The Dodgers' Twitter feed in late October (cries).

James Shields vs. Madison Bumgarner.

C'mon, Royals. Give us a shred of hope here. Don't give us another off-season of San Francisco hubris.

thanks to SoSG Dusty for the GT idea

Saturday, October 25, 2014

World Series Game 4 Thread: KC @ SF, 5p

Jason Vargas vs. Ryan Vogelsong.

The Royals have the 2-1 series advantage. The Giants have never trailed in a World Series since 2002...and we all know what happened then. Let's hope history repeats itself. Go Blue!

photo from @robotbraden via @EephusBlue

Friday, October 24, 2014

World Series Game 3 Thread: Royal Giants, 5p

Daily News: "Mets foreshadow World Series with Royal Giants uniforms."

Jeremy Guthrie vs. Tim Hudson

For the third time in five years, seagulls will shit all over the World Series. Hooray!

Image: Getty Images

Joe Maddon Quits Rays, But It, Like, Totally Doesn't Mean Anything


But then...


Nothing to see here! Move along! Everyone is assuredly telling the absolute truth, as is always the case in American sports.

UPDATE (12:24pm): Andrew Friedman released a statement through the Dodgers:
As I said last week, Joe and I enjoyed a tremendous relationship working together in Tampa Bay and I wish him nothing but the best, wherever his next stop will be. However, nothing has changed on our end. Don Mattingly will be our manager next season, and hopefully for a long time to come.
Definitive rumor-squashing, bold-faced lie, or gambling that Donnie will up and quit? You be the judge.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

World Series Game 2 Thread: Pumpkins vs. Crowns, 5p

Yordano Ventura (who cares) vs. Jake Peavy (who cares).

Enjoy, you masochists!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

World Series Game 1 Thread: NL West 2nd Place Finishers @ AL Central 2nd Place Finishers, 5p

James Shields (0-0, -.--) vs. Ashley Madison (0-0, -.--)


Really, how are Dodger fans supposed to be motivated to watch the third Giants World Series appearance in five years? What, are we supposed to cheer for the team in blue with the inept manager because it feels familiar? I guess. Not really that strong a motivator, given how we know in our heart of hearts that the baseball gods hate us, hate joy of any kind, and will OF COURSE allow the Giants to squash the feel-good story of the Royals.

At least if we don't watch, the streak of abysmal ratings for the Giants in the World Series will continue. There is a slight possibility there will be an uptick in ratings due to people tuning in to see if the Royals can go 12-0, but that would be immediately snuffed out by a Game 1 loss.

So yeah, we're still bitter. Maybe we'll hate-watch. Maybe we'll tune in to see if the "Ned Yost, Super Genius" story continues. Or maybe we'll just watch every Simpsons episode ever. I think I'll watch this one first:

Friday, October 17, 2014

Forgotten Los Angeles Stadiums

To get your mind off of this awful World Series matchup, CurbedLA had a nice piece on old, forgotten Los Angeles stadiums.  I didn't know that we had the first Wrigley Field! Hat tip to Mrs. Cora for finding this.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Walking Ned

Well, holy crap.

Ramona's got the full scoop HERE.

To recap: Andrew Friedman is the new President of Baseball Operations. He can hire a new GM. Ned falls up, to become Stan's...something. Donnie likely staying.

More later, after our heads are done exploding.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Ryu Noodles Around

Hyun-Jin Ryu's now-legendary Ottogi Noodle commercial, featuring "lookalikes" of some of his Dodger teammates, has been making the rounds EVERYWHERE in the Dodger community. It's only fitting we preserve it here at SoSG as well.

The video is hilariously bizarre and deserving of all the attention. In addition to the video, friend-of-SoSG Sarah Wexler uncovered a link to some amazing behind-the-scenes photos of the commercial shoot. These photos reveal that both a Puig lookalike and a Uribe lookalike were hired for the shoot, but not used in the final commercial.
Hopefully, we'll see these two in an extended version soon. Though, there was word on Twitter that Uribe would be flying to Korea to appear in another commercial with his best buddy Ryu. That better not have been a joke.

I feel like this commercial and semi-baseless rumors about front office firings are the two things keeping Dodger fans afloat right now.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Fan Ad-preciation Day

From today's LA Times' sports section:

(click to enlarge)

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Post NLDS Game 4 Thread: There Is No God


There is no god. Because even the most psychotically perverse deity would not have allowed what befell Clayton Kershaw in the seventh inning in Game 4. Stoked by a lead again (2-0), and cruising to a one-hitter over the Cardinals, Kershaw inexplicably gave up a three-run HR to unlikely rotund hero Matt Adams. This time, unlike in Game 1, Kershaw wasn't just trying to overpower the Cardinals with fastballs. But this time, it was a hanging curveball which unraveled the Dodgers, and ultimately eliminated us from the 2014 postseason.


How inexplicable was this? So crazy, that ESPN's statistics department couldn't even add correctly:

Clearly, in giving 108%, Kershaw was short 2%.

Kershaw, obviously crestfallen and befuddled, admirably faced stupid questions from an insipid St. Louis press corps, and soldiered through post-game interviews with class and dignity that I suppose could only be expected from The Best Pitcher In Baseball:

"The season ended and I'm a big part of the reason why," Kershaw said. "It doesn't matter how I pitched. It's bad deja vu all over again. I felt we had a really good chance to win. I'm thankful we got here and hope to be back."

Looking at the photos of Kershaw walking off the mound in the seventh inning, my heart aches. He doesn't deserve this. And we Dodger fans don't deserve this either, what with the NL West-winning Dodgers going home, while the second-place retread Giants advancing to the NLCS, in a series where I don't want either team to win (in fact, I hope it goes seven games of 99 innings each, all of which with microscopic television ratings).

Manager Don Mattingly? Yeah, he deserves the vitriol, again doing a fine job managing the team through six innings, but finding himself at a loss beyond that. Mattingly also spent the morning getting crucified on Twitter for benching Yasiel Puig in favor of Andre Ethier (who went 0-for-2 with two walks, but was picked off third base to end the sixth inning in Puigian fashion, failing to dive back to the bag after considering coming home on a shallow passed ball). Ethier's performance was not worth the substitution. And Mattingly did end up putting Puig in later in Game 4, as a pinch runner of all things, which also makes no sense.

Dan Haren never entered the NLDS, even in relief. Not sure why we were saving him.

Ned Colletti sure as heck should be under consideration for blame, being allowed to play with the highest payroll in baseball, but neglecting to fortify a bullpen beyond a closer.

And there are fingers to be pointed at some of the members of the team. Hanley Ramirez, if he had any defensive skills, could have leapt for that second single that preceded the Adams HR. It would have been a double play had he caught it. Dee Gordon and Juan Uribe, both of whom were impressive this regular season, neglected to show up at the plate for most of this series.

But Kershaw, at the center of the storm? I've lost faith in everything at this point. But not him.

We'll get 'em next year, Clayton. We just have to clean some house around you first.

Now please excuse me, as I go get my Orioles and Royals gear on.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

NLDS Game 4 Thread: Oct. 7 @ Cards, 2p

Bracing for oblivion.

Clayton Kershaw (0-1, 10.80) vs. Shelby Miller (0-0, -.--)

*sigh* So, it comes down to this. The entire Dodgers season rests in the hands of Clayton Kershaw, the undisputed "Best Pitcher in Baseball Who Also Gets Knocked Around Inexplicably by the Cardinals in October"™. We stand one Cardinals win and one Giants win away from the most insufferable NLCS since the last one the Dodgers weren't in (which, coincidentally, featured the same two teams...barf). Times are grim.

But...somehow...there is hope.

Dad has hope...

Trusted SoSG associate Todd has hope...

Do the rest of us dare have hope? For me, the true crushing blow came in Game 1. I've been more or less numb since then. At his point, why not have hope? At the very least, let's have this damn thing decided in OUR house. Everything has come too easy for the Cards. Everything has gone their way. Make them work for it. And for Vin's sake, DON'T THROW STRIKES TO CARPENTER!

Oh, and somebody lock the bullpen gate.



*If you're somewhere you can drink at 2pm on a Tuesday.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Post-NLDS Game 3 Thread: Whatever Pitching Decision Don Mattingly Makes, It Is Inevitably Wrong


At this stage, it's getting ridiculous. Mattingly leaves Clayton Kershaw in for Game 1, when the Cardinals are teeing off his fastball and Kershaw doesn't seem to want to throw anything else, even shaking Mattingly off the mound in the process. Wrong answer. And then in Game 1, he signals for Pedro Baez, who had entered a game with baserunners in only three of his 20 2014 appearances. Also, wrong answer. Then, for Game 2, Mattingly pulls Zack Greinke after seven shutout innings in Game 2, going to J.P. Howell. Wrong answer.

And tonight, Mattingly has Hyun-Jin Ryu plugging along through six solid innings and a 1-1 game, going this time to Scott Elbert, who had struck out both batters he faced in Game 1. Sure thing, right? Nope, wrong answer again; Elbert gives up a leadoff double to Yadier Molina, and then a home run to biblical scholar Kolten Wong, to put the Cards up 3-1 and put the Dodgers down 2-1 in the series. Arguably, Elbert was the wisest choice yet, given Ryu was at 94 pitches coming back from shoulder issues; Scott Van Slyke pinch-hit in the top of the seventh for Ryu, with none on and two out, and grounded to short. But in Mattingly's hands, in this NLDS, the Elbert decision could only go incredibly awry. Which it did.

Sure, we had a chance in the ninth inning with consecutive singles and one out off of Trevor Rosenthal. Cardinals manager Mike Metheny calmly came out when Rosenthal was down 2-0 in the count to Juan Uribe, delayed the game while calling for the grounds crew to apply a drying agent ("drying agent"? sort of like Lana Kane in Archer?) to the mound, and allowed his closer to catch his breath. Rosenthal then got Uribe and A.J. Ellis to fly out to right field, and end the game.

Mattingly has made regrettable pitching decisions in each of the three NLDS games. Metheny, on the other hand, has seemed to slow the game down when his team looks unwieldy. This contrast cannot be underlined more, as it's swinging the series.

You look up and down the two lineups, and with the exception of Matt Carpenter's torrid run and Juan Uribe's lack of jazz hands this series, we should be ahead in this series, not down 2-1. I'd like to think that, with Kershaw starting Game 4 and Greinke starting a possible Game 5, we have a shot at winning this series in five games.

That is, if baseball games were six innings long. At a full nine innings? We're bound to choose the wrong answer, again. That was easy.

NLDS Game 3 Thread: Oct. 6 @ Cardinals, 6p

So much this.

Hyun-Jin Ryu (14-7, 3.38) vs. John Lackey (14-10, 3.82).

The series shifts to Busch Stadium, home of those Best Fans in Baseball. The Dodgers turn to Ryu, coming off of three weeks of rest for an irritated shoulder. Mattingly has said that Dan Haren is waiting in the wings should Ryu falter early, which would almost certainly trigger Kershaw on three days' rest for Game 4. So in other words: I just want to tell you good luck, Hyun-Jin. We're all counting on you.

Offensively, well, just look at the picture above. The Dodgers have piled on 24 hits in two games so far, A.J. is 5 for 8, and only Uribe has yet to contribute at the plate. And as we noted earlier, this Dodger team is a bunch of road warriors, for whatever reason. I know regular-season success hasn't been much of a postseason predictor (hello, Angels), so it's time for the Dodgers to change the narrative. I don't know exactly what that means, but it feels like it needed to be said. GO BLUE!

Sharp Dressed Men