Monday, May 30, 2022

Games 48-50 Thread: May 30 - June 1 vs. Pirates

Mon 5.30 7p: Buehler vs. Thompson
Tue 5.31 7p: Urias vs. TBD
Wed 6.1 5p: White vs. Quintana

Oh sure, a four-game sweep of the Diamondbacks (punctuated by a 3-1 victory on Sunday), leading to an 8-2 record on the longest road trip of the season, should be cause for celebration. Except that four of those wins came at the hands of the Diamondbacks (against whom we are 9-2 this season), and we failed to put away sweeps against both the sub-.500 Phillies and the sub-.500 Nationals on this same road trip. We probably should have gone 10-0, frankly. So it's hard to get super-excited when the competition is so poor.

Meanwhile, this series opens up with the Pirates (who won the series in Pittsburgh), before we get four against the Mets, the first real team we've seen in a while. The secret to earning a winning homestand probably rests upon a strong outing against the Pirates this series.

Oh, and to add insult to injury: I had tickets to Monday's game, to see Walker Buehler. And I can't go (my father is going to use the tickets, which is good). So yeah, I'm salty. Whoopee.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Games 44-47 Thread: May 26-29 @ D’backs

Thu 5.26 6.40p: White vs. Castellanos
Fri 5.27 6.40p: Gonsolin vs. Bumgarner
Sat 5.28 4.15p: TBD vs. M Kelly
Sun 5.29 1.10p: T Anderson vs. TBD

This series, the last leg of a ten-game road trip, starts with Mitch White. White's last start was not so great (2.1 IP, 3 ER), and this very short outing vs. Philadelphia burdened the relief corps. Can White, in the opener, not cast a long shadow over the rest of the series?

Hoping we can rebound after dropping yet another final game in a series, preventing a sweep (Dodgers are 4-2 on this road trip).

And in other news: Sax placed two bets on the Dodgers last week, winning on both the Monday and Tuesday games. I didn't place a bet on Wednesday. And we lost. (SoSG Dusty blames me for the loss.)

Monday, May 23, 2022

Games 41-43 Thread: May 23-25 @ Nationals

Let's do this.

Mon 5.23 4p: Tyler Anderson vs. Avon
Tue 5.24 4p: Buehler vs. Gray
Wed 5.25 1p: Urias vs. Fedde

After Max Muncy's horrible showing in Sunday's game vs. the Phillies, I felt the need for the Dodgers--and myself--to put my money where my mouth is. So let's go.

Friday, May 20, 2022

Games 38-40 Thread: May 20-22 @ Phillies

Fri 5.20 4p: Urias vs. R Suarez
Sat 5.21 3p: TBD vs. Nola
Sun 5.22 10.30a: Gonsolin vs. Eflin

Remember last week, when the Phillies came into town and spanked us in three out of four games (the Dodgers avoiding a sweep only when Gavin Lux came through for an unlikely walkoff win)? Well now we are back in their house, except this time we only have two starters named for a three-game series. So I'm not expecting much brotherly love this weekend.

The Dodgers start the weekend only 1.5 games ahead of San Diego (who took two of three from the Phillies this week).

Monday, May 16, 2022

Games 34-37 Thread: May 16-18 vs. D'backs

Victory Brewing Company...from Pennsylvania of course

Mon 5.16 7p: Gonsolin vs. Bumgarner
Tue 5.17 12p: TBD vs. M Kelly
Tue 5.17 7p: T Anderson vs. TBD
Wed 5.18 7p: Buehler vs. Davies

The walk-off victory on Sunday afternoon was great, especially given the rally came with two out off the bats of the struggling Cody Bellinger and Gavin Lux. But that doesn't change the fact that the Dodgers lost 5 of 7 against Pennsylvania teams in their last two series, including almost getting swept by the Phillies at home for the first time since 1985.

We were fortunate to prevail on Sunday. We don't really have much of a rotation at this point though, and our bullpen was horrible for three of the four games against Philadelphia. So let's see if we have anything left in the tank for Arizona, since we know how this went last time (hint: it wasn't good).

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Games 30-33 Thread: May 12-14 vs. Phillies

The Dodgers might be Donkey Kong, but this homestand sure feels like we're Mario.

Thu 5/12 7p: Anderson vs. Wheeler
Fri 5/13 7p: Kershaw vs. Gibson
Sat 5/14 7p: Buehler vs. R Suárez
Sun 5/15 1p: Urías vs. Nola

Eight games. Seven days.

Yes, that's what this hellish homestand has in store for the Dodgers, who return from Pittsburgh with their tail between their legs after dropping two of three to the lowly Bucs. Sure, a 4-2 road trip doesn't sound all that bad. But the Dodgers' offense looked positively awful for a lot of that series @ PNC Park: 0-for-5 with RISP on Monday; then 1-for-7 with RISP on Wednesday. And both of those games were losses.

Max Muncy (0-for-3 on Wednesday) is batting .138. Justin Turner, who had a breakout game on Tuesday, is batting .194 (0-for-3 Wednesday). And Cody Bellinger (0-for-4 Wednesday) is barely over Mendoza at .206.

And yet, Doc Roberts insists on putting them together in the lineup for two of the three games in Pittsburgh, as if they were eighth-grade girls at a Loyola High semi-formal. We have to at least sit one of them, or break up the string of badness. Because the way they are batting now, they pose abysses in the lineup that turn run-scoring rallies into missed opportunities.

After this series, the homestand continues with four games against Arizona (including a doubleheader). The Dodgers start play on Thursday nursing a 1.5 game lead on the Padres and a two-game lead on the Giants. Would be nice to gain some ground against the sub-.500 Phillies.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Post-Game 28 Thread: Animal Returns!

"Here we go again / I kinda want to score more than ten..."


Sure, it was just the second game of a series against a sub-.500 team that the Dodgers should have won anyway. But Justin Turner going 4-for-5 with 4 RBI was a welcome jolt for the team, coming off a 5-1 series-opening loss that gave an opposing pitcher his first win since 2019.

Tonight, the Dodgers restored balance to the force, notching huge offensive outbursts in the third inning (batting around, for five runs) and the seventh inning (four more runs), to maroon the Pirates and take home a very lopsided victory. Now 20-8 with a run differential of +80, the Dodgers now are on pace for an absurd +463 run differential for the season. Is this possible? With Justin Turner, whose average rose to .200 with this game, potentially joining the Dodgers' hit parade, it certainly is.

That said, remember back to April 24, when Cody Bellinger won NL Player of the Week? Yeah, well since then, Bellinger is 6-for-43 with a .140 BA and a meager .422 OPS. So let's not get too far ahead of ourselves here.

In the meantime, let's celebrate Justin Turner's outing, and hope it's a portent of things to come.

Welcome back, JT! (What took you?!)

Rubber match tomorrow morning, party peoples: 9.30am. As a reminder, the game thread for this series @Pirates can be found here.

Monday, May 09, 2022

Games 27-29 Thread: May 9-11 @ Pirates

Mon 5/9 3.30p: Urias vs. Quintana
Tue 5/10 3.30p: Gonsolin vs. Bry Wilson
Wed 5/11 9.30a: TBD vs. TBD

A sweep of the Cubs this past weekend pushed the Dodgers' winning streak to six in a row, and now Los Angeles is 1.5 games clear of the Padres and four games ahead of the Giants and Rockies. But with Blake Treinen out through the All-Star Break, we really need to be racking up these wins against lowly NL Central teams (like the 11-16 Pirates) in May, before the Dodgers' opponents get a lot more challenging next month (Mets, White Sox, Giants, Angels, Braves).

Friday, May 06, 2022

Games 24-26 Thread: May 6-8 @ Cubs

Fri 5/6 11a: Tyler Anderson (2-0, 2.55) vs. TBD
Sat 5/7 11a: Clayton Kershaw (3-0, 2.35) vs. Steele (1-3, 5.50)
Sun 5/8 4p: Walker Buehler (3-1, 2.12) vs. Stroman (1-3, 5.13)

The Chicago Cubs are cold. 9-15 on the year and fourth in the NL Central (7.5 games behind the Brewers), the Cubs have not come out of the blocks strong. And speaking of cold: Friday is supposed to rain, and the weekend isn't supposed to get warmer than 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

The Cubs are coming off a two-game series loss to the cross-town White Sox, after being felled Wednesday by a bloop RBI single from former Dodger AJ Pollock. (As an aside, Pollock is batting .190 this season with a 33 OPS+; the Dodgers traded Pollock to the White Sox for Craig Kimbrel, who has a 1.35 ERA over 6.2 IP, and a 300 ERA+.)

The Cubs' leadoff bat of Alfonso Rivas has been their spark this year, matting .333 with a .919 OPS to lead the team. Seiya Suzuki is batting .250 in the two-hole. And 3B Patrick Wisdom has five HR this year (more than any other Dodger player).

But with the recent awakening of some of the Dodgers' bats in our Wednesday 9-1 victory, maybe we can bring the heat into the Windy City this weekend.

Wednesday, May 04, 2022

Post-Game 23 Thread: Dodgers Get Fourth-Right

SoSG AC got texted from a friend at the game that, following the Giants' botched play in B7 (Gavin Lux infield RBI single), the Diamondvision posted "Do or do not. There is no try."


May the Fourth be with the Dodgers, who swept the Giants in two games with a resounding beatdown Wednesday, a 9-1 victory that snowballed with momentum like a Real Madrid Champions League playoff game.

Down 1-0 through three innings on a Brandon Crawford solo shot, the Dodgers got two back in the bottom of the fourth on successive RBI singles from Trea Turner and Will Smith. Then a Mookie Betts solo shot to lead off the bottom of the sixth.

Then a four-run seventh punctuated by the aforementioned Lux RBI single (Wilmer Flores fields the ball at first, and then has no play when Giants don't cover the bag), a Betts sac fly, and a Freddie Freeman triple. And then finally, a Max Muncy two-run HR to notch the final runs.

Unlike the Giants' penchant for running up the score, those last two runs were not a matter of gloating. Muncy has been off to a horrible start this season, as he probably is rehabilitating from that brutal injury from the end of last season. But his surprising 2-for-4 night (only his second multi-hit game this year) lifts Muncy's average to .151, the lowest of all Dodger regulars--so if Muncy can show some signs of life, that would be a huge boon.

All Dodgers starters reached base tonight. Only Chris Taylor didn't get a hit tonight.

Tony Gonsolin was fine, 5.0 IP with 3 H and 1 ER (1 BB, 5 Ks). The Dodgers used four bullpen pitchers to pitch four scoreless frames.

The Dodgers' 16-7 record is best in the National League, and one game ahead of San Diego in the NL West. And sure, the Giants had a depleted roster for this series, which probably contributed to the sweep. There's still 17 games to play here!

The Dodgers get a day off Thursday, and then a weekend series in Chicago, where it's scheduled to rain Friday and be in the 50s all weekend. Yikes.

Tuesday, May 03, 2022

Games 22-23 Thread: May 3-4 vs. Giants

The players have changed a bit. The rivalry intensity hasn't.

Tues 5/3 7p: Urias (1-1. 2.50) vs. Rodon (3-0, 1.17).
Wed 5/4 7p: TBD Gonsolin (1-0, 1.59) vs. A Wood (2-1, 4.19).

When the Dodgers last saw the Giants, it looked something like this:

Ah yes. I remember it well, but I can watch those highlights again just to be pleasantly reminded.

(And by the way, when I debated with my brother-in-law (a Giants fan) about the Dodgers' profligate spending to date, and whether it has been worth it so far, I was able to remind him of two inescapable truths: 1) 2020 World Series Championship, and 2) 2021 NLDS Championship. Yes, there could, and should, be more. But yes, those two accomplishments are forever.)

Okay, back to this one. The Dodgers open up the day tied for first place in the NL West with the Padres, and the Giants are in third just a half-game back. This two-game tango features one Giant starter who hasn't lost this year, and another who was a former Dodger who went 0-2 against us last year (in three starts) but then helped San Francisco win NLDS Game 3 against us.

Meanwhile, don't let a series win over the lowly 7-14 Tigers fool you. We've still got Justin Turner scuffling with a .187 BA (and a .499 OPS), while Cody Bellinger's flash of a comeback dissipated quickly in the Detroit series as he went 1-for-11 with an RBI (Bellinger is batting .208). And we haven't even named a starter for Wednesday.

Clench up, Dodgers fans.