Monday, June 18, 2018

Series Thread (Games 71-73): Jun 18-20 @ Cubs

Memories: Our last visit to Wrigley Field.

Monday 6/18 5p Tuesday 6/19 9a: Maeda (4-4, 3.61) vs. Chatwood (3-5, 4.12) LAD 4, CHC 3; Kyle Farmer wins it in the ninth
Tuesday 6/19 5p: Hill (1-2. 6.30) vs. Montgomery (2-2. 3.31)
Wednesday 6/20 11.20a: Stripling (6-1, 1.76) vs. Lester (8-2, 2.28)

The Dodgers are rolling, having not lost a series in their last nine series (8-0-1), climbing back to 1.5 games behind Arizona with a 37-33 record. But the Cubs are also gaining momentum in their chase with Milwaukee, where they're only a half-game back and a much more formidable 40-28 record.

But we haven't seen this team since...oh yeah. And remember this guy? Well, he's on the DL and won't be pitching this series. And his replacement, whom we'll see Saturday, is complicating plans for Darvish's return.

A win in this series would portend great things before traveling to New York for the LOLMets, and then coming back home for four straight against this Cubs team again. Let's see if we can put our opponents in their cubby holes.

UPDATE 6/18 5p: The weather isn't cooperating for this first game, however (and Kris Bryant looks pretty bad in shorts; see below). No start time announced as of yet.

Friday, June 15, 2018

Series Thread (Games 68-70): 6/15-18 vs Giants


Fri, 7p: Derek Holland vs Ross Stripling
Sat, 5p: Madison Bumgarner vs Alex Wood
Sun, 1p: Chris Stratton vs Undecided

Bumgarner's back from the DL but they lost Longoria to a broken hand. The Giants are 15-24 on the road yet only one game under .500 and two games back of the Dodgers in the standings.

Yet the Dodgers of June are a vastly different team compared to the Keystone Kopps (see above) of April. Will they go forward, not backward? Upward, not forward? And always twirling, twirling, twirling towards freedom (see below)?

UPDATE 6/16: Dusty and Sax will both be at Saturday’s game. Separately. But together in spirit and soul, brother!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Series Thread (Games 66-67): June 12/13 vs. Rangers

The Rangers' two starters, in a recent photo shoot.

Caleb Ferguson (0-0, 21.60) vs. Bartolo Colon (3-3, 4.16), 7p
Kenta Maeda vs. Cole Hamels (3-6, 3.86), 7p

In a short two-game series, The Dodgers are seeing very different starting pitchers from the visiting Texas Rangers. Tonight, we see a gargantuan mound of flesh so large, his belly can withstand a 102-mph comebacker and simply reverberate like a jello mold. In tomorrow's game, we see a spindly toothpick who fancies himself a runway model when he's not pitching.

And that's the long and the short of it. Or, the fat and the skinny of it.

It shouldn't matter much for the Dodgers, whose recent clawing back to a one-game-over-.500 record reflects a starting rotation held together with duct tape and fishing line (not to mention an overworked bullpen). But we had a day off yesterday, following our seventh-straight series without a series loss (6-0-1 record). So go ahead, Texas, throw whatever you've got at us.

Just don't throw that big fat guy too far, or you'll strain your back.

Friday, June 08, 2018

Series Thread (Games 63-65): June 8-10 vs. Braves

Fri 6/8: Buehler vs. McCarthy, 7p
Sat 6/9: Wood vs. Sanchez, 6p
Sun 6/10: Stripling vs. TBD, 1p

Finally, a good team worthy of facing the red-hot Dodgers, winners of 15 in their last 20 games and having not lost any of their last six series (5-0-1). With the Dodgers stroking the bats and sending in a phalanx of relievers to plug holes in the injury-ridden starting rotation, we now go up against the NL East-leading Braves, 10 games over .500 (unlike our pedestrian 31-31 record that has us out only a game and half in the mediocre NL West).

Manny Mota Bobbleheads for the taking this weekend. Let's go get 'em, Blue!

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Series Thread (Games 60-62): 6/5-7 @ Bucs

Plaque from Truman; professional photoshop work from SoSG Sax

Tues 6/5: Ross Stripling vs. Joe Musgrove, 4p
Wed 6/6: Caleb Ferguson vs. Trevor Williams, 4p
Thu 6/7: Dennis Santana vs. Jameson Taillon, 9.30a

The Dodgers have won their last three (sweeping Colorado) and have not lost any of their last five series, going 11-5. And yet I see names like Caleb Ferguson (no MLB experience) and Dennis Santana (12.27 ERA, though one "win"), and I'm worried as all get out. The Bucs are above .500, unlike the Dodgers. Can we eke out another series win?

(We're up 2-0 in the first game, through two innings, thanks to a Joc Pederson HR which scored Matt Kemp. So that's a good start.)

late series post by Sax

Our Newest National Hero

Padres fan (their only fan) catches ball in beer and does the right thing, cementing LEGEN - wait for it - DARY status.

 

No word if she's single, but the line starts here!

Keeping a Promise to Vin, 2018 Edition

From 2016:



From 2015:


From 2013:


Earlier at SoSG:

Friday, June 01, 2018

Series Thread (Games 57-59): 6/1-3 @ Rox

Fri, 5:40p: Scott Alexander vs Tyler Anderson LAD 11, COL 8
Sat, 4p: Walker Buehler vs German Marquez LAD 12, COL 4
Sun, 12p: Alex Wood vs Chad Bettis

Monday, May 28, 2018

Series Thread (Games 53-56): 5/28-31 vs Phils

Sorry for the late thread...posting this for no particular reason....

Mon, 5p: Brock Stewart vs. Vince Velasquez LAD 5, PHI 4
Tues, 7p: Jake Arrieta vs Kenta Maeda PHI 6, LAD 1
Wed, 7p: Zach Eflin vs Ross Stripling LAD 8, PHI 2
Thurs, 4:30p: Aaron Nola vs Clayton Kershaw PHI 2, LAD 1

Friday, May 25, 2018

Series Thread (Games 50-52): May 25-27 vs. Padres

Friday, 5.25, 7p: Ross Stripling vs. Clayton Richard LAD 4, SD 1
Saturday, 5.26, 7p: Alex Wood vs. Lyles SD 7, LAD 5
Sunday, 5.27, 1p: Walker Buehler vs. TBD LAD 6, SD 1

With the Dodgers taking two of three from the NL West-leading Rockies, and winning six out of their last seven games, the Dodgers amazingly find themselves only 3.5 games back of first. This is despite having one of the worst starts in franchise history, and playing absolutely maddening baseball when it comes to RISP.

Those two wins against the Rockies were impressive, with one a comeback victory and the other a Kenta Maeda 12-strikeout gem. But now it's out of the frying pan, into the friars. Wait, that pun doesn't work so well here, so maybe I'll use it on Monday when we face the Phillies (why isn't this a four-game series for the Memorial Day weekend? This makes no sense).

It all starts with you, Chicken Strips.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Series Thread (Games 47-49): 5/21-23 vs Rox

Monday! Pepto! Acid reflux!

Mon, 7p: Walker Buehler vs German Marquez COL 2, LAD 1
Tues, 7p: Kenta Maeda vs Chad Bettis LAD 5, COL 3
Wed, 7p: TBD vs Kyle Freeland LAD 3, COL 0

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Series Thread (Games 44-46): 5/18-20 @ Nats

Sat, 11:05 AM: Ross Stripling vs Tanner Roark (Game 1 of doubleheader caused by rain 5/18). We won! (we won) We won! (we won)
Game 2, 5:05 PM: Rich Hill vs Max Scherzer We won! (we won) We won! (we won)
Sun, 10:35 PM: Alex Wood vs Stephen Strasburg We swept! (we swept) We swept! (we swept)

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Series Thread (Games 41-43): 5/15-17 @ Fish

Tues, 4:10p: Alex Wood vs Wei-Yin Chen We lost. To the Marlins. Who have the second-worst record in the NL.
Wed, 4:10p: Walker Buehler vs Caleb Smith We lost. To the Marlins. Who have the second-worst record in the NL.
Thurs, 9:10a: Kenta Maeda vs Dan Straily We l—we won??????

Loyal SoSG reader/softballer Johnny Blanchard, to paraphrase the immortal Def Leppard, has got something to say! Take it away, Johnny B!

WHO TO BOO?

Who’s responsible for this garbage?

This has been just a fascinating start to a season. The Dodgers have an absolutely loaded roster, full of players that the hoi polloi have dreamed of having for decades. This, of course, stands in direct contrast to whatever the hoi polloi say.

Currently, the Dodgers still have a positive run differential. Therefore the team is not the Reds, Marlins, or Padres despite the fact that those teams are literally right next to the Dodgers in the standings. The hoi polloi are not known for their collective intelligence.

That said, the Dodgers baseball club is not winning games at a high rate, so it must be asked: who is to blame?

The culprits are as follows:

    1. Cody Bellinger. This cocky m’fing Millennial is missing all the balls and I have heard from back channels, because you know I have access, that there are people in the Dodger organization that don’t believe in this guy. I guess it’s not entirely germane to the discussion, but worth noting since he’s stinking up the joint right now. The Dodgers could’ve done a blockbuster trade and sold this guy high maybe. What do I know.

    2. Yasiel Puig. A man who has shown a great degree of resiliency to hang in mentally and improve his approach to the sport of baseball, has been an abject failure at the dish so far this year. Puig continues to play excellent right field so he is still a net positive, but the club was counting on a solid bat from old number 66.

    3. Kenley Jansen. Our big man, the most lock-solid dependable player on the roster, alongside Justin Turner & Clayton Kershaw, has been absolutely awful this year. One wants to believe things will improve inevitably, but one needs to wait until Mr. Jansen actually starts throwing pitches like Dodgers fans are used to seeing before the faith increases. To whom much is given, much is expected.

    4. Scott Alexander. The Dodgers count on the guys they have designated to be their breakout performers based upon careful analysis of sabermetric principles to be actual breakout performers. This guy can’t stop walking people. Now, another time-tested Dodger method is to send underperformers to the bush leagues and get their act together. Mr. Alexander has just returned from his sojourn to Oklahoma so perhaps he will repent of his prior ways.

    5. Chris Taylor. He’s lower on the list because one shouldn’t actually believe in a guy that has no reason why one should believe in him other than one year’s good production. Mr. Taylor is like Mr. Bellinger — missing the ball all time but at least he plays premium defensive positions like shortstop and center field with his weak bat.

    6. Austin Barnes. This is another young man designated to be awesome by the front office. Mr. Barnes has not done so. He is making lemonade out of lemons through super on-base powers but he isn’t hitting the ball well. Plugging him in the lineup with last year’s productivity makes this team much better.

    7. Rich Hill The New Englander is scuttling. He’s still striking guys out, but watching him, Mr. Hill is obviously giving up too much hard contact. Fortunately, this red-ass plays the game the right way and beats himself up nightly to be better at playing baseball so he should improve.

    HONORABLE MENTION: Logan Forsythe, who doesn’t make the list because he’s injured and has struggled with injuries and it’s not nice to pick on guys whose bodies aren’t working right.

All this said, and believe me, it’s annoying to watch all this craptastic baseball happen, this team is not nearly this bad. The Dodgers have given up a .300 BABIP and a 14% Home Run per Fly Ball rate; both of those numbers are in the bottom 10 in baseball.

In other words, the Dodgers are suffering bad luck on the pitching side. To further illustrate, Tony Cingrani has stuck out 22 and walked 4 in 14 innings, and has a 5.79 ERA.

My recommendation is to go out and watch the baseball team you love and boo them when appropriate. It has been fun in 32 years of being a Dodger fan to hear people argue about the validity of booing, but finding the appropriate members of the roster to boo is of vital importance.

We are not in the salad days of Juan Pierre & Andruw Jones & 2011-2012 Juan Uribe. The guys we have to boo are much better players and they are the guys listed above.

Thanks Johnny! Oh, by the way...

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Series Thread (Games 37-40): May 10-13 vs. Reds

Thu 5/10: Walker Buehler vs. Tyler Mahle, 7p We lost. To the Reds. Who have the worst record in the NL.
Fri 5/11:: Kenta Maeda vs. Brandon Finnegan, 7p We lost. To the Reds. Who have the worst record in the NL.
Sat 5/12: Ross Stripling vs. Homer Bailey, 6p We lost. To the Reds. Who have the worst record in the NL.
Sun 5/13: Rich Hill vs. Luis Castillo, 1p We lost. To the Reds. Who have the worst record in the NL.

With a 16-20 record, fourth place in the division and back a full eight games of surprisingly hot Arizona, the Dodgers haven't had much about which to be happy of late. (Especially if you saw Kike Hernandez' woeful 0-fpr-5 with 2 Ks, 8 LOB, and misplay in the outfield leading to a Diamondbacks inside-the-park home run last night.)

But one of those few bright spots seems to be Walker Buehler, who is 2-0 in 3 games (16 IP), with a 1.13 ERA and 19 Ks. He takes the mound tonight to start a four-game series against one of the only three teams who have a worse record than the Dodgers, the Cincinnati Reds. The Giants already lost today (to the Phillies) and are in Pittsburgh this weekend; the NL West-leading Snakes host the Nationals starting Friday.

Maybe this is the series where the Dodgers get some timely hits for a change, and we make up some ground in the standings before the quarter-season mark hits?

Or, maybe things get even worse.

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Series Thread (Games 35-36): 5/8-9 vs Snakes


Tues, 7p: Rich Hill vs Zack Godley ARI 8, LAD 5
Wed, 7p: Alex Wood vs Patrick Corbin LAD 6, ARI 3

Like the Offspring says you gotta kick him when he's down — and the fourth-place Dodgers (15-19) are definitely down:

And since the first-place Snakes (23-11) are trending up, this two-game series promises to be uggggggly.

And we promise to bitch and moan about it! Join the (crying) in the comments section!

Saturday, May 05, 2018

Hilo del Juego (5 de mayo) contra Padres, 4p

¡Hola, compañeros! Bueno, funcionó ayer, puede funcionar hoy. Si Karina escribe, los Doyers ganan. ¡Vamos a probar esto otra vez! -Stubbs


Felicitaciones para Walker Buehler, Tony Cingrani, Yimi Garcia y Adam Liberatore en su juego sin hits ni carreras. Brindaremos en su nombre todo el fin de semana, ¡gracias! y ¡salud!

Los Padres esperaban que sus influencias religiosas los ayudaran a vencer a los Doyers, pero no tomaron en cuenta que los Doyers son ateos este fin de semana. Pensaron enfrentar a un amateur y encontraron a un niño bomba, seguido de un bullpen con toda la clase y poder de Danny Trejo. Chris Taylor y Kike Hernandez trajeron dinamita en sus bates y los Doyers salieron victoriosos 4-0, en una noche inolvidable para la amplia historia de buen pitcheo de nuestro equipo.

Esperemos que los Padres sigan viendo sombras en el juego de hoy. ¡Fondo blanco!

*Imagen: Baby Says "No!", Alisa Coburn

Friday, May 04, 2018

Hilo de la Serie (Games 32-34): 4-6 de mayo contra Padres

Bienvenido al fin de semana! En esta serie, seremos los Hijos (y Nuera) de Steve Garvey, porque estamos en América Latina, invitamos a nuestra latina favorita, Karina, para que fuera nuestra escritora invitada. ¡Adiós, y buena suerte a todos! - Stubbs

Viernes, 6p: Walker Buehler vs Joey Lucchesi, LAD 4 - SD 0 Combined no-hitter!
Sabado, 4p: Kenta Maeda vs Bryan Mitchell, SD 7 - LAD 4
Domingo, 1p: Rich Hill vs Eric Lauer, SD 3 - LAD 0

En las inmortales palabras de los geniales Molotov, ¡VIVA MÉXICO, C*BRON*S!. Empezamos el fin de semana del 5 de mayo en Monterrey, México, con el inicio de la serie Doyers-Padres (pronounced PadRRes). En México no se celebra el 5 de mayo, pero nosotros lo usaremos como excusa para tomar margaritas y micheladas, si los Doyers ganan, celebramos...si pierden, ¡se nos olvida! Fondo blanco, damas y caballeros, ¡SALUD!


Casi veintidós años han pasado desde la primera vez que un juego de Grandes Ligas se celebró fuera de las fronteras de EE.UU. y Canadá, el 16 de agosto de 1996, precisamente en Monterrey, el escenario de hoy. Fernando (<3) lanzó el primer pitcheo y también se desempeñó como el lanzador de los Padres, quienes derrotaron a los Metropolitanos 15-10 (¡disculpa, Delino! Quizá los Metropolitanos pensaron que era una práctica de bateo).


En aquella oportunidad, el único jugador mexicano en ambos rosters era Fernando (<3<3), en esta serie, tenemos al Padre bebé, el nativo de Guadalajara, Christian Villanueva. Sin embargo, los Doyers tienen dentro de las filas del circuito radial en español a Fernando (<3<3<3), así que de antemano les hemos ganado la partida a los Padres porque si Fernando (<3<3<3<3) está con nosotros, ¿quién puede contra nosotros?


El encargado de abrir por los Dodgers será nuestro bebé Doyer, Walker Buehler (1-0, 1.80 ERA), quien se estrenó en Grandes Ligas demostrando lo que se espera de su talento, mientras que el responsable de la lomita por los Padres será Joey Lucchesi (3-1, 2.78 ERA).

Me despido, agradecida con mis cuñados de SoSG por invitarme a escribir la introducción para el juego de hoy. Les dejo con buena música proveniente de Monterrey: Plastilina Mosh con “Mr. P Mosh”

*Imagen: Plastilina Mosh

Monday, April 30, 2018

WELP

Series Thread (Games 28-31): April 30 - May 3 @ Snakes

Mon 4/30, 6:40p: Ross Stripling vs. Zack Greinke ARI 8, LAD 5
Tues 5/1, 6.40p: Clayton Kershaw vs. Matt Koch ARI 4, LAD 3
Wed 5/2, 6.40p: Hyun-Jin Ryu vs. Zack Godley LAD 2, ARI 1
Thu 5/3, 12.40p: Alex Wood vs. Patrick Corbin LAD 5, ARI 2

April 2018 has been pretty depressing for the Dodgers, capped by a horrible performance in losing three of four in San Francisco this weekend. Between dropping the two series to the Marlins and Giants, we've also come away with even more injuries not to mention players like Cody Bellinger getting benched for lack of hustle.

The LAT's Houston Mitchell has already had enough (especially regarding the Bellinger benching. And if you're a Dodger fan watching any of these games, you've probably had enough, as well. This team lacks consistency, drive, batting with runners in scoring position, a decent bullpen, and Justin Turner.

We've got four games against the NL West leader, Arizona, who is seven full games ahead of us and on track to be something like 59 games ahead of us by year's end (my math may be off there). I'd like to think it's put-up-or-shut-up time, but that incentive certainly hasn't motivated Pedro Baez of late. So why would it motivate any of the rest of the Dodgers?

I"m depressed. (And anxious.)

Note: We are trying everything here at SoSG HQ, including bolding our starter but not the opposing pitcher. What the hell, why not. Better than trotting Pedro Baez out there each time.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Series Thread (Games 24-27), 4/27-29 @ Giants

Fri, 7p: Hyun-Jin Ryu vs Derek Holland Orange 6, Blue 4
Sat, 1p: Walker Buehler vs Chris Stratton Blue 15, Orange 6
Sat, 7p: Alex Wood vs Johnny Cueto Orange 8, Blue 3
Sun, 2p: Kenta Maeda vs Ty Blach Orange 4, Blue 2

WELP.

Donnie's Revenge is complete, the Marlins having taken two of three from us to boost their record to a scintillating 7-17. Meanwhile, the third-place Dodgers (11-12) visit the fourth-place Giants (11-13...how are we ahead of them in the standings?) in a series that includes a doubleheader that makes up for a rainout in San Francisco earlier this month.

The Dodgers went 12-17 last September, so maybe they're just getting their shitty month out of the way now? If so, brilliant plan, guys!