Saturday, February 10, 2007

All Eyes on Schmidt

On the pitching side of the equation, Dodger fans will be focused on new acquisition Jason Schmidt next year, as he assumes the "ace" role for the Dodgers in the rotation despite some concerning stats in the second half of 2006 (though not as concerning as Brad Penny). ESPN's Buster Olney put Schmidt in his "top ten veteran arms pitching in crucial circumstances" on Thursday:

8. Jason Schmidt, Los Angeles Dodgers
Scouts who trailed Schmidt last year found his velocity to be inconsistent, sometimes climbing into the low 90s, sometimes less than that. The Dodgers bet $56 million that Schmidt can continue to be a dominant force, and if he is, L.A. could have the best rotation in the NL West. After the All-Star break last year, Schmidt went 5-4 with a 4.76 ERA, and the batting average of opponents hitting against him climbed from .216 before the All-Star break to .267 after it.

And if Schmidt is dominant, the Dodgers will be in a better position to trade a pitcher for a power hitter.

Ah yes, that elusive power hitter! Sure would be nice, Jason. No pressure or anything.


Orel said...

Isn't Schmidt's contract for $47 million?

Steve Sax said...

You're right. Olney should be shot.

Anonymous said...

About Schmidt: That elusive power hitter just might be Jason Schmidt! On 1 July 2004 Schmidt homered for the Giants off of Jose Lima of the Dodgers. That is one of 11 home runs I have seen a pitcher hit. Here is that list:

Pitchers Hitting Home Runs

Date Batter RBI Pitcher Inn Home Team Result

06 Apr 69 Ed Sprague Sr (Oak) 1 rbi Tom Murphy (Cal) 7th Cal W 8-6
16 Jul 69 Jim Rooker (KC) 1 rbi Andy Messersmith (Cal) 3rd Cal L 4-2
06 Jul 77 Rick Rhoden (LA) 1 rbi J.R. Richard (Hou) 3rd LA L 2-1
06 Oct 78 Steve Carlton (Phil) 3 rbi Don Sutton (LA) 2nd LA W 9-4
22 Sep 91 Ramon Martinez (LA) 1 rbi Tom Glavine (Atl) 4th LA W 3-0
07 Apr 02 Kevin Brown (LA) 1 rbi Mike Hampton (Col) 6th LA W 6-4
19 May 02 Andy Ashby (LA) 1 rbi Masato Yoshii (Mtl) 4th LA W 10-1
02 Jun 02 Miguel Batista (Ariz) 1 rbi Kazuhiro Ishii (LA) 3rd LA L 6-3
17 Jul 03 Hideo Nomo (LA) 2 rbi Garrett Stephenson (StL) 3rd LA W 6-3
20 Jul 03 Woody Williams (StL) 1 rbi Odalis Perez (LA) 4th LA W 10-7
01 Jul 04 Jason Schmidt (SF) 1 rbi Jose Lima (LA) 3rd LA L 5-4

On the mound Schmidt sports a 2-2 record in games I have been to. That includes a 3-hit shutout against the Dodgers on 19 June 2003.

Orel said...

Sax: Is he fat?

Yetijuice: Since baseball is a game of superstitions, I think you should attend all of Schmidt's home starts. Road starts too, if you can make them.