Monday, April 13, 2009

Game 8 Thread: April 13 vs. Giants, 1p

Chad Billingsley (1-0, 3.00) vs. Randy Johnson (0-1, 7.20).

COMMENTS: There are times when I feel like I'm the luckiest Dodger fan in the world. Consider this game, the Opening Day home game for the 2009 Dodgers:

  • I'm taking the day off from work to attend the Dodgers' 2009 home opener, keeping my streak of home opening day games that dates back to 2002;
  • For the first time, I'm going to an opening day game with another Son, SoSG Alex Cora;
  • I've got Field Level seats, third-base side;
  • The Dodgers come in with a winning record (4-3), one game out of first place to the surprising Padres, but with momentum after two well-played games in the desert against the Diamondbacks;
  • I get to see 24-year old Dodger ace Chad Billingsley take the hill for the Dodgers;
  • I also get to see 95-year old Randy Johnson take the hill for our arch-rival, the hated San Francisco Giants (about whom I may have mentioned prior, have never won a World Series);
  • It's supposed to be a beautiful day tomorrow, as it always is at Dodger Stadium;
  • Beer prices are supposedly lower this year, though you can be sure I'll be reporting back if the $6 beer cup is the size of a thimble;
  • And, so many of my friends and family are attending this game, that we're holding a post-game party at my house afterward.

Having gone to a Opening Day games at Dodger Stadium for years now, I can say that it's a real treat, worthy of the salivation that it inspires for months in advance. There is nothing like the hope of a new Dodgers season, the crispness of the grass with the Opening Day logo freshly painted near the on-deck circles; all the pre-game pageantry and festivities (last year's "Field of Dreams"-like parade of Dodger legends was truly awe-inspiring); and the intense, blindly-supportive roar of the crowd during the game, cheering on every Dodger from the ones who are going to become gods this year to the ones who are going to be painful disappointments come late July. This is it, it's the game to see, and there's nothing like it. And I can't wait.

Now, I'll be honest, there have been a couple times in my life when I have not felt so lucky. For example, there was one "transition" point in my life, while I was living up in San Francisco, when I spent a lot of time enjoying one too many beers and late nights, frequenting a local haunt called "Lucky 13." Dark, smoky, and unpretentious--and walkable from my place--it attracted the diverse type of crowd from motorcycle enthusiasts to young hipsters. A wholly offensive backlit beer sign behind the bar had Billy Dee Williams, decked out in a flared-collar 1970's era suit with a beautiful black woman on his arm, reminding patrons that Colt 45 "works every time." In short, it was the perfect kind of joint to lose yourself in anonymity while one got one's shit together and once again aspired to do bold things in life, like taking on the identity of an iconic Los Angeles Dodger and starting a Dodgers blog with his childhood friends. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for Lucky 13, even though involved a relatively unlucky time in my life.

Today, I'm feeling lucky. Very lucky, and always happy to be a Dodgers fan. But on the other hand, it's April 13, and we're playing the Giants, who would love to rain on the Dodgers' parade (as Barry Bonds and the team did back in 2005). Which one's gonna win out this afternoon? Will Sax come home a happy man?

We're opening this Game Thread when they're opening the gates at Dodger Stadium, at 10:40a.

131 comments:

Orel said...

Rule 7.10(d): It works every time!

karina said...

They'll win for sure!. Have a great time!

I won't be hanging around because unfortunately i can't skip work but i'll count on your reviews and this game thread.

Let's go blueeee! (and embarrass the hated ones)

Fred's Brim said...

just heard that Harry Kalas died doing pregame today. RIP Harry :(

Eric Karros said...

How could you have felt unlucky when you had a facsimile of Billy Dee Williams within walking distance of your place? I don't follow...

Fred's Brim said...

have a great time Saxxy! drink your $6 beers fast, before they evaporate! :)

Neeebs said...

Nostradamus told me that 13 goes with the color, blue. I'm not sure what that means, other than the fact that 13 is my number on my ice hockey team and on my softball team. Both teams' colors are blue and white.

So...you come to your own conclusion Mr. Sax, and enjoy the game.

BTW, tell Alex to buy you the first round.

Orel said...

Furcal, SS
Hudson, 2B
Ramirez, LF
Loney, 1B
Martin, C
Ethier, RF
Kemp, CF
Blake, 3B
Billingsley, P

Damon said...

Man what a crappy time for openening day. Good thing work is slow ill have to check occasionally

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

I kind of disagree with this lineup, only in that Kemp should be hitting 5th between Andre and Loney. Russell is not swinging the bat well, and Kemp absolutely destroys left handed pitching. Until he gets out of his funk, Martin should be hitting 7th.

That said, GO DODGERS!!! Sweep the Giants!!!

Loney Fan said...

Awesome pregame ceremony so far with the players coming through the stands to take the field one by one.

Orel said...

Did you see the smile on Casey Blake's face? Cool.

Fred's Brim said...

That bar looks awesome, by the way

Orel said...

Ugh, Journey.

Fred's Brim said...

anybody posting from the game? c'mon iPhone users - step up!

Loney Fan said...

Journey... nice!

Loney Fan said...

Darn, have to go back to work. Thank God for Tivo.

Fred's Brim said...

so what? so let's dance!
"any way you want it, that's the way you need it...."

Dusto Magnifico said...

Furcal
Martin
Ethier
Manny
Loney
Kemp
Dewitt
Hudson
P

In an ideal world this is our lineup...

Erin said...

The trouble with Extra Innings in Puerto Rico is that there are only three channels. That means that I have to watch the end of the 10-6 Chicago/Detroit game before the Dodger game starts. Annoying. Keep me updated, please, guys!

Alex Cora said...

Pregame ceremony rocked

Alex Cora said...

Vin throws out the first pitch fireeworks and doves with one dove getting stuck on diamond vision

Orel said...

Winn flies out to left, Renteria grounds out to third, Lewis singles to right, Molina flies out to right. 13 pitches for Bills.

Orel said...

Furcal K's on a slider.

Orel said...

Hudson beats out a nubber in front of home. By an inch.

Erin said...

Yay! I have video!

Alex Cora said...

odogg with the motor.

Orel said...

Oh man. Manny flies out to the right-center warning track.

Alex Cora said...

Sooooo close. This place was going crazy with mannys fly ball.

Fred's Brim said...

he is so due for a blast. he seems to be seeing the ball pretty well

Fred's Brim said...

dont let them clear the picther

Orel said...

The Matt Kemp Potential-Reaching Tour continues.

Alex Cora said...

We need some hits.

Orel said...

Sax is receptionless but wants to pass this along: "Pre-game ceremonies were awesome. I've got great footage of O-dog. AC is already drunk."

Alireza said...

The extent to which Randy Winn owns Bills is amazing.

Alireza said...

Orlando Hudson - A move I like more and more every day.

Orel said...

O-DOG
O-DOGG
O-DAWG

Neeebs said...

O-Dawg = 2

Manny = 0

Alireza said...

Did I mention that I am liking this O-Dog move more and more every day?

Orel said...

"And Ramirez dibbles with a double!" —Vin

Neeebs said...

But we'll take a double every third at bat too.

Alireza said...

Note to Unit - The transition to crafty veteran means you can't hang sliders like that when they are going 84 as opposed to 90.

Alireza said...

Who else had Orlando Hudson second to Matt Kemp on the Dodgers in OPS?

Alireza said...

Wow. Was that Loney's first K of the year?

Orel said...

Aflac trivia question: Who is the only manager since 1900 to manage both the Dodgers & Giants?

Orel said...

Note to Unit - lefties still have trouble with you.

Orel said...

Good try, Matty.

Alireza said...

"Aflac trivia question: Who is the only manager since 1900 to manage both the Dodgers & Giants?"

Easiest one in a while. Leo Durocher.

"Note to Unit - lefties still have trouble with you."

Yep. I can't imagine what it was like facing that guy as a lefty when he was throwing 100, let alone now.

Orel said...

Gotta love the 6-4-3!

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

I heart mlb.com live gameday audio.

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

Boo, Charlie Steiner...

Alireza said...

I am liking the GB from Bills.

BTW, I just watched the video on Gameday of Hudson's dinger. That was actually a pretty decent pitch. It had late break, but Hudson wasn't fooled and crushed it.

Alireza said...

Russell Martin doing his best Bobby Abreu impersonation.

Alireza said...

Except for that part.

Neeebs said...

ANDRE THE GIANT

Orel said...

DINING WITH 'DRE

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

DRE DAY!!!

Neeebs said...

Good thing this MLB Gameday Audio works in Ankara, Turkey.

fanerman said...

Man, Andre Ethier is hot like a carne asada Chipotle burrito.

Orel said...

Joe Torre looking smart there.

Alireza said...

What was that about the Unit and lefties?

Oh, and good walk Kemp.

Orel said...

Very nice, Neeebs & Fanerman.

Alireza said...

Even Casey Blake is getting in on the action.

Orel said...

Love seeing the pitcher get the bunt down!

Orel said...

I know, Alireza. Ethier was dialed in.

Orel said...

Hell yeah! 4-1 Dodgers!

Alireza said...

In play, (runs)

Rafael Furcal singles on a line drive to right fielder Randy Winn. Matt Kemp scores. Casey Blake scores.

fanerman said...

I love having a great line-up 1-8. And nice bunt from Billingsley!

Neeebs said...

Orel: :-)

Alireza said...

Who says Andre's power is limited? He hit that over 400 feet the opposite way.

Orel said...

O-Dog double! Keystone Kops in the OF! Furcal scores! 5-1 Dodgers!

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

i wish i could see randy johnson's ugly ugly face right now

Alireza said...

Triple for the cycle O-Dog.

Dusto Magnifico said...

Orlando Hudson is juicing!!!

Alireza said...

And Manny is walked.

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

Come on Loney, base knock brotha!

fanerman said...

Aww.

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

or walk on 4 pitches

Neeebs said...

This will be an early test for Martin.

Pressing too hard or keying in on the zone and coming through with the bases loaded.

Will he pass or fail?

fanerman said...

UGh. My sources are spewing incorrect information. Go J-Mart!

Erin said...

This pitcher's first name never fails to crack me up.

Neeebs said...

Erin: I venture to guess that at least 50% of the commenters do not know what a Merkin (sp) is.

Orel said...

yay Russ

Erin said...

Neeebs, you're probably right.

Here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merkin

Orel said...

Shall we take a poll? Chime in if you know what a merkin is. No Googling allowed!

me: yes

fanerman said...

Go Jean!

Orel said...

without looking at Erin's link

rbnlaw said...

Takin' it to the Hated Ones.

Saxy, Lucky 13 is an awesome bar. Second only to the Tornado in SF.

rbnlaw said...

Yes to the merkin knowledges.
. . .and I don't wear one.

Neeebs said...

Me: Yes. Primarily because I had a friend in High School with a last name of Mirkin.

fanerman said...

I see why his name is so lol-worthy. Probably shouldn't have clicked on that link at work though.

Alireza said...

Everyone likes a nice bat around.

Erin said...

Sorry Fanerman. I didn't even look at the page before I posted the link. That picture is crazy.

Alireza said...

Wake up Chad. Its time to just throw solid heat and strike guys out.

Erin said...

Funny that the pitcher is actually mentioned on the Wikipedia page, too.

QuadSevens said...

Working hard here, but listening on the radio. Yes, I know what a merkin is. And no I wasn't ready for the images google presented when I searched merkin.

Orel said...

Loney looks super-comfortable at first.

rbnlaw said...

Is it me, or does Kemp seem a little uncomfortable in center? Still a better alternative than J Pierre.

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

he didn't look uncomfortable running that line drive down yesterday...

fanerman said...

Chad's the only one to get a hit that inning?! Stop slacking guys!

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

i can't stop laughing about merkins.

Neeebs said...

Ah, the joy of the game thread where you can rejoice at the Dodger achievements and and discuss the virtues of the Merken.

Neeebs said...

C-Y-C-L-E

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

OOOOOOO DOGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!!!!

Andrew said...

Do you realize that, being born in 1982, I have grown up listening to Vin Scully...talk about Wes Parker being the last Dodger to hit for the cycle. I mean if someone asked me that question, I could answer it like it was 2+2.

fanerman said...

Cycle. Opening Day. Giants getting pummeled. Love it!

Neeebs said...

Andrew: You will also be able to answer the new question, too. Answer: O Dog.

QuadSevens said...

Man I wish Vin was on the radio instead of Charlie Steiner. But the Dodgers are kicking ass and hitting for the cycle in their home opener! Loving it!

Fred's Brim said...

cycle!

Orel said...

Hey, did I miss anything???

Fred's Brim said...

aww Casey - so close!

rbnlaw said...

I take back the uncomfortable comment about Kemp. Every pop up has been entertaining today.
Tough sky.

Who let the O-Dog out?

Neeebs said...

Steiner's the worst.

Andrew said...

Neebs, Im not so sure. It will be one of those questions where its been so instinctively beaten into my head, that I think I may still answer Wes Parker.

Neeebs said...

Orel: nothing special going on here. These aren't the droids that you are looking for. Move along.

rbnlaw said...

Is it true that when Randy Johnson trimmed his mullet, he donated the neckwarmer to Merkins of Love?

Orel said...

SoSG: Where cycles and merkins collide.

rbnlaw said...

Longest rendition of God Bless America, ever.

Hong Like a Chih Kuo said...

Is this the perfect regular season Dodger game? Opening Day. Vin throws out the first pitch. Every starter with a base hit. Absolutely dominating the hated ones. Our ace on the hill dealing K's left and right (5 in a row at the end of top 7, 11 total). Two homeruns. A Dodger has hit for the cycle.

Does it get more perfect than that?

rbnlaw said...

11 k's; no walks?
This is the Bills we've waited so long for.

Dr. Geek said...

11K's for Chad!

I better not hear any more pundits claim the rotation is lacking an ace.

Orel said...

Everything is falling our way today.

rbnlaw said...

Flashing a little leather. Even Ohlman looks good. The Opening Day love gets better.

QuadSevens said...

ANDRE! ANDRE! ANDRE!

Orel said...

Wow, Vin's voice just jumped as soon as the ball left Ethier's bat.

Orel said...

Two HR's for Ethier off lefties today!

QuadSevens said...

3 run bomb for Ethier! His second HR on the day!

Fred's Brim said...

Dre Day!

rbnlaw said...

25 or 26 runs in the last 3 games?
I've lost count.

Should save some for Matty Cain on Wed.

Orel said...

Loretta full extension grab. We might be using all our good karma today.

Fred's Brim said...

we earned a lot of it vs the Padres

Fred's Brim said...

speaking of which, Jody Gerut homered on the first pitch at Citi Field