Thursday, June 27, 2019

Series Thread (Games 83-86): June 27-30 @ Rockies

I just wanted you to you watch me dissolve
In a pool (in the right field pavilion of Chase Field)

Thu 6/27 5.30p: Buehler vs. Lambert
Fri 6/28 5.30p: Ryu vs. Senzatela
Sat 6/29 5.15p: Kershaw vs. Gray
Sun 6.30 12n: Maeda vs. Gonzalez

Remember all that momentum we had, from three straight walkoff wins against Colorado at home? Well in Arizona, The Dodgers were lucky to get away with one win, but still dropped the series and looked like crap along the way. And here's a sample of some of the Dodgers' worst:

Pederson: 1-for-5 with 2Ks, DNP, 1-for-4 with a K. He is batting .232.
Hernandez: 1-for-3 with a K, 1-for-4, 0-for-3 with a K. He is batting .212.
Barnes: 0-for-2 with a K, 0-for-2 with 2Ks, 0-for-0. He is batting .214.

These are not good numbers. You've gotta think that in Coors Field, these should improve.

They'd better, or this NL West lead is going to dissolve, real quick.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Series Thread (Games 80-82): June 24-26 @ D'backs

Greinke, constipated

Mon 6.24 6.30p: Clayton Kershaw vs. Greinke
Tue 6.25 6.30p: TBD Ross Stripling vs. Ray
Wed 6.26 12.30p: TBD Tony Gonsolin vs. Clarke

The Dodgers' pitching rotation has some holes, with Rich Hill's forearm keeping him out until at least August, not to mention workload concerns for Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ryu, and Walker Buehler. Luckily, the Dodgers' power bats from unlikely sources have kept our winning momentum alive. And we start this roadtrip in the Arizona desert, against a 39-40 team that has only won three of its last seven games.

Speaking of pitchers, remember Zack Greinke, Monday's starter and former Dodger? Well, here's how things have gone since Zack departed us for warmer climates: Zack Greinke with the Dodgers (three years): 51-15, 2.30 ERA, 156 ERA+. Greinke with the Diamondbacks (four years): 53-28, 3.44 ERA, 130 ERA+. Maybe that's the natural decline of a pitch in his 16th year. Or maybe it's the desert air getting to Zack.

And since we just announced Wednesday's starter, triple-A call-up Tony Gonsolin, here's Sting sort of singing a song about his name.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

What. A. Weekend.

Three games against the Rockies. Three straight walk-off HRs, all by rookies (Matt Beaty, Alex Verdugo, and Will Smith). Series sweep over the second-place Rockies, who fall to 13 games back. The Dodgers are 54-25, which is an insane 29 games over .500.

"I can't believe it. A 25-man roster is not big enough for the talent in this organization."--Orel Hershiser, following the Will Smith walkoff HR

All three games had over 50K in attendance, including Friday's sell-out.

Maybe it's time for a bigger celebration?

Other coverage:

Friday, June 21, 2019

Series Thread (Games 77-79): June 21-23 vs. Rockies

A tempered celebration, if you will

Fri 6.21 7p: Walker Buehler vs. Marquez
Sat 6.22 4.15p: Hyun-Jin Ryu vs. Lambert
Sun 6.23 1p: Kenta Maeda vs. Senzatela

Following a harrowing escape in Thursday's 9-8 victory over the Giants and Madison Bumgarner, saved only by a killer throw to nab Stephen Vogt at third for a game-saving force out, we're able to catch our breath and realize that the Dodgers just dispatched our rivals with three straight victories in which we scored 9 runs to win. Let's celebrate! Hence the video up top. We're 6-2 on this homestand with three more to play against Colorado.

The Rockies may be a small item in the rear view mirror (10 GB, in second place), but objects in mirror may be closer than they appear. Colorado is 7-3 over their last 10, and recently scored 48 runs in a four-game series vs. San Diego. No letting up here, Dodgers (like you did at the end of Thursday's game). Maybe we hold Josh Sborz's next appearance for the following series. Let's go, Blue!

Monday, June 17, 2019

Series Thread (Games 73-76): June 17-20 vs. Giants

A late addition to the Game Thread, from SoSG Nomo before Game 4

Somewhere down there lies Oyster Pubes and the Giants

Mon 6.17: Kenta Maeda vs. Beede
Tue 6.18: Clayton Kershaw vs. Anderson
Wed 6.19: Rich Hill vs. Pomeranz
Thu 6.20: Walker Buehler Julio Urias vs. Bumgarner

all games at 7p

It's going to be difficult to improve upon our last four-game series (three of four at home vs. the Cubs, spoiled only by a game-winning ninth-inning Anthony Rizzo HR in Saturday's game). At 48-24, the Dodgers are at least six wins ahead of any other NL team, so what more could we ask of them? Kenley Jansen pitching to form? Starting pitchers not having a shaky first inning? Offense showing up consistently throughout the series?

At this point I'm just nitpicking. We're 10.5 games up on Colorado and Arizona, and a stunning 16.5 games up on the Giants (the largest lead in the league).

But I'll be there Thursday to watch Walker Buehler Julio Urias duel that other guy, just to make sure:

Friday, June 14, 2019

9.5 Games Up - What A Way To Make A WINNING

NL West, how's our tailpipe look?

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Series Thread (Games 69-72): June 13-16 vs Cubs

Thu 6.13 7p: Clayton Kershaw vs. Lester
Fri 6.14 7p: TBD vs. Hendricks
Sat 6.15 6p: TBD vs. Darvish
Sun 6.26 4p: TBD vs. Quintana

Summertime just got a lot less easy (and not just because of Lana Del Rey and the lack of video there).

Two-game series, how I hate thee. Let me count the ways: A momentum-killing sweep at the hands of the Orange County Angels. Another bullpen flameout thanks to Dylan Floro and Joe Kelly. An injury to Corey Seager just as he was getting red-hot (Justin Turner even commented that Seager's hot bat might have actually contributed to the hamstring strain, as Seager had to run more bases lately). And then a full day to stew about the losses (and possibly recuperate). Two-game series suck!

All that, and we start the series off with a Joe Kelly bobblehead that no one wants. As I'm going to Thursday's game, all I can think about is how early I'll have to leave now, to make it to the game (since bobblehead giveaway games are typically shitshows for traffic, but who knows, maybe this one won't have the same draw).

Meanwhile, the Cubs have the second-best record in the league, and (unlike the Dodgers), are making moves to fortify their bullpen. Our bullpen is our achilles this year. Let's see how bad we get exploited against a good team, now that a sub-.500 team has already taken us to town.

Sunday, June 09, 2019

"Series" Thread (Games 67-68): June 10-11 @ Angels

6/10 7p: Hyun-Jin Ryu vs. Canning
6/11 7p: Kenta Maeda vs. Peña

Series win against the Giants in San Francisco! Max Muncy talking smack to Ashley Madison! And Joe Kelly pitching an inning of no-run, 3 K ball (Saturday)! What could possibly go wrong?

Gotta love this summer so far. Part 2 coming next.

Friday, June 07, 2019

Series Thread (Games 64-66): June 7-9 @ Giants

not much of a video here, black keys

Fri 6/7 7.15p: Clayton Kershaw vs. Pomeranz
Sat 6/8 4.15p: Rich Hill vs. Samardzija
Sun 6/9 1.15p: Walker Buehler vs. Bumgarner

The Dodgers took only two of three in the Arizona desert, thanks to another bullpen implosion (this time from Scott Alexander) in the final game. But the big winner was SoSG Sax here, who put down a whole $20 on the Dodgers to win the Ryu game (Saturday, a 9-0 win), at -210 odds, and netted a cool $9.55 in profit for that wager. I still have no idea how those odds are calculated, but I was excited to win money. Thank you, Hyun-Jin!

No bets this weekend on the Dodgers for Sax. My stomach can't handle those his and los.

Fun fact: Clayton Kershaw has 22 wins against the Giants and Rockies (22-10 and 22-7, respectively); 23 would be the most against any opponent.

Thursday, June 06, 2019

Keeping a Promise to Vin, 2019 Edition

Vin Scully, from 2008:

Normally on the telecast we talk about "This Day in Baseball." I don't mean to sound grumpy or grouchy, but I can't believe what I didn't hear. I listened to the news on the radio for about an hour and fifteen minutes today—did not hear one word about what this day really means. June the 6th, 1944. Do the names Omaha, or Utah, Gold, Juno, Sword, do they mean anything? They're the beaches at Normandy. Sure, today was D-Day, the invasion of Europe, when thousands of soldiers gave their lives so that we could be free. I'll be darned if I saw any real publicity about it at all. Please don't let that happen again next year. Please? Yeah, this day.

Vin Scully, from 2009:

It's about quarter of nine in Los Angeles. That makes it about quarter of six on the beaches at Normandy, in France. And 1944, June the sixth, tomorrow, that was the invasion of Europe.

We heard the names: Sword, Gold, Juno, Utah and Omaha. Those were the names of the beaches as the British, Canadians and the United States invaded Europe.

Let's go back to this one.

At quarter of six on the beaches of Normandy sixty-five years ago, something like forty thousand fell in the invasion that was called Operation Overlord. The bloodiest beach was Omaha.

And then of course there was that area called Pointe du Hoc. You probably saw that in the movie The Guns of Navarone, where the GIs had to try and climb thirty-foot cliffs and the Germans were on top of the cliffs shooting down at them.

So, do us older guys a favor. If you have children, would you please take time out tomorrow and tell them the sacrifice that was made sixty-five years ago?

Freedom is not free. Boy, a lot of fellas gave their lives so that we could be sitting here watching a baseball game.

Please don't forget it.

Vin Scully, from 2010:

...but I think we've been friends long enough, you'll understand.

Today, to me, is a far more important day than a baseball game. It is extremely important for those of us who have lived through it to make sure the kids in the country are extremely aware of it. And what took place on this day, June the sixth, 1944.

Oh yeah, you could just sum it up and say oh sure, Allied forces invaded Normandy. There is so much more, as Troy Glaus checks in. Ely's pitch, fastball inside, ball one.

First of all, "D-Day." The "D" in front of "Day" doesn't mean anything. It just meant the day of a military operation.

The one-oh pitch on the way, outside.

And it used to be D-Day for any military operation, but as the years have gone by, when you say "D-Day," they're talking about this day in 1944.

The two-oh pitch, fouled away.

It actually had two names. It was Operation Overlord and Operation Neptune. Overlord was the complete plan. Neptune was the assault phase.

The two-one pitch to Troy Glaus, waved at and missed, two and two.

Now before they could invade, they had to supposedly soften up the area. In April and May, Allied air forces lost twelve thousand men and over two thousand airplanes just trying to get things ready for the invasion.

Two-two, Glaus takes inside, ball three.

And then the day came, June the sixth, 1944. There were five beaches involved, in the, I think it was the Cotentin Peninsula.

Here's the three-two pitch and Glaus swings and misses and strikes out. One away.

Basically the Canadians had three beaches. They had Sword, Gold and Juno. And the United States forces had two beaches, Utah and Omaha. And of all five beaches, without a doubt, the bloodiest was Omaha.

Now, while the ground forces were going on, again, there were huge battles in the air. And there were over fifteen thousand killed, Allied, in the battle in the air.

The one-oh pitch, inside to Eric Hinske, who is hitting .323. Two and oh the count.

When D-Day finally concluded, when you include all of the people involved, the enemy, the Germans, and the Allied forces — and the pitch to Hinske inside — 425,000 men were killed.

As far as casualties are concerned — well, I shouldn't say just killed. The three-oh pitch, that's high, ball four. That included dead, wounded and missing in action.

For the United States, on D-Day, there were twenty-five hundred Americans killed, about several thousand seriously wounded and MIA.

And what is left of that gray day if we don't talk about it, if we don't convince the kids to take a moment and realize the unbelievable sacrifice that was made on this day? We would be really guilty.

The pitch at the plate is whacked to center. Kemp has a play and Matt makes the catch, and Hinske goes back to first base.

Well, I tell you what, make the trip over to Normandy, there are twenty-seven cemeteries, from Normandy straight up towards Belgium. There are 77,000 Germans buried along the way. Ninety-three hundred Americans have left themselves over there. Seventeen thousand Britons, over five thousand Canadians and another 650 Polish soldiers.

That's what they did and that's what happened on this day.

The pitch at the plate, ground ball by the diving Carroll into left field, so Melky Cabrera a single and that'll bring up Tim Hudson.

So anyway, I realize it's an intrusion, maybe you don't want to hear about something negative, but that's not negative. Any time we talk about a sacrifice in baseball, you can just about break down and laugh. The sacrifices that were made on this day in 1944, heartbreaking but at the same time inspirational.

So if you have children, please don't let the day go by. 1944, D-Day. The invasion of Western Europe.

Okay, let's get to the ballgame. Here's Hudson, two out, two on, no score, second inning....

Monday, June 03, 2019

Series Thread (Games 61-63): June 3-5 @ D'backs

Mon 6.3 6.30p: Walker Buehler vs. Ray
Tue 6.4 6.30p: Hyun-Jin Ryu vs. Clarke
Wed 6.5 12.30p: Kenta Maeda vs. Duplantier

Count it out, count it out. 1-2-3-4-5-6 wins in our latest 6-1 homestand, bringing the Dodgers to an amazing 41-19 record on the year, at a time when no other team in the NL exceeds 34 wins. We have a nine-game lead in the West (over the Rockies, who have won eight in a row). The host Snakes are 11 games back, at .500. No getting snakebit here, please.