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Dodgers Starting Pitching Continues to Shine as LAD Sweeps Braves

The Dodgers got out the brooms and swept the Atlanta Braves.  It could just as easily turn around when the Dodgers play 4 in Atlanta, September 13-16.

But there were some very favorable outcomes in this game/series.  There were many out there ready to call James Paxton a bad FA signing because of his walks.  It was clear to many that after 5 starts and only 31 games into the season, that James Paxton can no longer pitch effectively.

Then he pitches a game like he did on Sunday.  6.2 IP, 1 run (Marcell Ozuna HR), 5 hits, 2 BB, 3K, and 84 pitches.  He is still a #5 in the rotation pitcher, and is very capable of having a blow out game along the way.  It is conceivable that he could not get out of the 3rd inning in his next start.  But he is more than capable of pitching at a higher level.

6 starts, 32.1 IP from a pitcher most were hoping to get 120 innings from.  His ERA is at 3.06.  He outdueled the remaining Atlanta Ace.

Another pitcher who many said should not have been on the roster after his first three games is Joe Kelly.  After his 1st three games, Kelly pitched 2.2 innings, and surrendered 6 runs (5 earned), for an ERA of 16.88.   Since then, he has appeared in 12 games, 10.2 IP, 1.69 ERA, 2.28 FIP.  11 of his last 12 appearances were scoreless.  13 strikeouts vs 4 walks.

Yes, he will have another meltdown like he did with St. Louis.  Yes, he will undoubtedly make the IL 2-3 times this year.  But he is not as bad as that pitcher on March 30 against St. Louis.

Blake Treinen made his long awaited 2024 debut.  1.0 clean inning with a K.  He is going to be key now that Evan Phillips is on the IL, and Daniel Hudson is having problems keeping the ball in the yard of late.

And finally Michael Grove.  After locking down the Braves in the 11th inning on Friday without a run, allowing Andy Pages and the Dodgers to get their first walkoff win of 2024, he entered in the 9th to close out the Sunday game and retired the side in order with 2 Ks.

The Dodgers are winning and Mookie has been struggling the last 8 games.  He has 4 singles and a double in 30 AB.  He does have 7 BB.  I am very comfortable going out on a limb and saying that I think he will get hot again.

Shohei and Andy Pages will cool down, and then heat up again.  And while many of you may not agree, I believe that Outman, Lux, and even Taylor will have hat a hot streak.

Bottom line, the Dodgers are hot right now.  And while everyone believes this is the team we were all expecting, we will see that team that was 5-9 the previous 14 games before this last 11-2 run.

There will be more injuries.  The bullpen could implode again. The fans will change their minds on what is going to be needed at the trade deadline multiple times over the next three months. It is a long season, and there will be a lot of highs, and a few lows, but at the end of the regular season, the Dodgers will once again be the NL West Division Champions for 2024.

We Dodgers fans just need to enjoy the ride.  Well at least I will.  But I also acknowledge that I expect to be venting at some point in the future as well.

 

MiLB GAME SUMMARY REPORTS

 

OKC Baseball Club 4 – Salt Lake City Bees (LAA) 1

Landon Knack made his first start since he was optioned, and pitched LAD MiLB complete game.  That is 5.0 IP.   He did allow  4 hits, including 2 doubles, and 2 BB.  He gave up a run in the 2nd inning after a single and one of the two doubles.  He did strike out 8 Bees batters.

OKC got two BBs, and 3 SB putting runners on 2nd and 3rd with 2 outs.  Ryan Ward doubled home two OKC runs and a lead they would not relinquish.

OKC doubled their runs in the 6th with back to back HRs from Kevin Padlo and Ryan Ward.

Connor Brogdon made his first rehab assignment and pitched to three batters in the 6th, retiring all 3 with 2 Ks.  Michael Flynn, Ricky Vanasco, and Michael Petersen each pitched scoreless innings, with Petersen striking out the side to earn his 2nd save.

  • Ryan Ward – 2-4, 1 run, 3 RBI, double (7), HR (12)
  • Andre Lipcius – 2-3, 1 BB
  • Kevin Padlo – 1-2, 2 BB, 2 runs, 1 RBI, HR (5)

 

Box Score

 

 

Tulsa Drillers vs Springfield Cardinals

Today’s series finale between Tulsa Drillers and the Springfield Cardinals has been rained out.

The game will be rescheduled as a doubleheader when the Drillers travel to Springfield May 21-26. The date and time of the doubleheader is to be determined.

 

 

Great Lakes Loons 5 – Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (Milwaukee) 3

Jackson Ferris started and pitched well for 4.0 innings.  He did allow 2 unearned runs in the 1st.  He allowed a leadoff double.  With one out, Ferris got a groundball to 3B, but Sam Mongelli threw the ball away, and the run scored and the batter ended up at 2nd.  Ferris struck out the next batter, and that should have ended the inning, but it kept the Timber Rattlers at the plate, and the next batter singled to score a 2nd run.

Ferris was close to automatic for the next three innings.  He left on the losing end of a 2-0 game after throwing 73 pitches (45 strikes).

The Loons got one back in the 5th on a Chris Newell HR (6).

Chris Campos relieved Ferris and surrendered a run in the 5th on a double and single.  This was the first run Campos gave up all season.

The Loons tied it up in the 6th.  Jake Vogel opened the inning with a single, and scored on an Alex Freeland double.  Freeland moved to 3rd on a ground ball, and scored on a Kyle Nevin SF.

Campos retired the next 6 batters he faced, and became the pitcher of record when the Loons scored in the 8th.  Alex Freeland drew a 1 out BB.  He stole 2nd and scored on a Thayron Liranzo single.

The Loons tacked one on in the 9th for a 5-3 lead. Sam Mongelli singled, stole 2nd and scored on an Alex Freeland single.

Lucas Wepf came in to close and retired the side in order, including 2 Ks for his 3rd save.

  • Alex Freeland – 3-4, 1 BB, 2 runs, 2 RBI, w doubles (10)
  • Jake Vogel – 2-3, 1 BB, 1 run, double (2)
  • Chris Newell – 1-4, 1 run, 1 RBI, HR (6)

 

Box Score

 

 

Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 4 – Modesto Nuts (Seattle) 0 – 7 Innings

Three Quakes pitchers tossed a 2 hit shutout.  Garrett McDaniels started and completed 4.0 IP.  He did allow 4 BBs and just 1 single.  He did have three Ks.

The pitching story for the Quakes (and Dodgers), is that 24 year old LHP Robinson Ortiz pitched for his first game since May 22, 2021.  He was a bit rusty.  He walked 2 and hit a batter, but did not give up any runs.  He threw 21 pitches (6 strikes).  It must have felt great just to get back on the mound after almost three years.  Ortiz was once one of the LAD prized prospects.

Cam Day completed the final two innings to preserve the shutout.

The offense made the most out of 3 hits (2 singles and a double), and 10 walks to get 4 runs.  In the 2nd inning, the Quakes led off with a pair of BB.  After 2 strikeouts, Kendall George singled home the first run.

In the 4th, Jesus Galiz drew a BB.  He went to 3rd on a double from Jefferson Valladares.  Galiz scored on a Juan Alonso sacrifice fly.

In the 6th, Wilman Diaz and Kendall George started with walks.  Jake Gelof singled to score Diaz, and George moved to 3rd.  George scored on a Josue De Paula sacrifice fly.

 

Box Score

 

Modesto Nuts (Seattle) 15 – Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 4 – 7 Innings

Jordan Thompson’s two-run homer in the first was quickly erased, as the Modesto Nuts scored seven times in the bottom of the inning, taking the lead for good on their way to a 15-4 win over Rancho.

Rancho starter Carlos Duran gave up four unearned runs in the first and recorded just two outs, as the Nuts took a 7-2 lead and never looked back, winning for the fifth time in six games over the Quakes.

Reynaldo Yean was the one bright spot in the pitching in Game 2.  A perfect inning with 2 Ks.

In the 2nd inning for the Quakes, Jefferson  Valladares reached on an error and moved to 3rd on a pair of ground outs.  He scored on a WP.

In the 4th, Jordan Thompson doubled, stole 3rd, and scored on a bad throw from the pitcher.

In other words, this was just a forgettable game in a forgettable series.

  • Jordan Thompson – 2-3, 2 runs, 2 RBI, double (5), HR (3)
  • Jefferson Valladares – 2-3, 1 run, double (3)

 

Box Score

 

 

 

 

 

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tedraymond

A profound statement by the Dodgers over the weekend. Shohei and Teoscar provided all the offense necessary despite of the rest of the team going hitless. With the top six (and maybe seven with Pages) hitters they are capable of having at least one or two players a game that can carry the team. When it’s more than two they have a result like Saturday night. Total dominance.

I was OK with Paxton’s past performances considering he is the #5 in the rotation. I totally agree with Jeff’s analysis of Paxton’s well pitched game yesterday. I kept waiting for a long ball or two from the Braves powerful lineup, but it never came. The Dodger offense has carried him previously which why it’s fine to have an inconsistent veteran pitcher as your #5.

I’ve got to give Joseph K props when they re deserved. I was in the group that was very critical of him in his first couple of outings. But, he has been very solid and fingers crossed that continues. But, as Jeff mentioned, he will most likely have some “out of nowhere” collapses throughout the season.

Andy Pages had a rough day yesterday. He got squeezed on a called third strike in his first AB and then had a couple of strikeouts where he looked a bit overmatched. He ended the day with a fly out. It will be interesting to see how he does the next few games hoping he can put yesterday behind him. Baseball is hard and a rookie can be put in his place quickly as the league adjusts to him. High velocity seems to be his weakness at the moment. He is fun to watch and seems to be improving defensively. The eventual slump will happen and it will be interesting how he responses.

I clicked on the box score for OKC – Sacramento game to check the stats of the OKC players. The OKC team have some nice offensive numbers so far. Then I looked at the Sac results. Sacramento is the Angels AAA team. What a sad scene that is. I don’t know if they had any top prospects not playing, but they had three players hitting under .200, four hitting under .230, with the final two hitting .286 and .311. Not only are the LAA consistently awful, but it doesn’t look very promising in their minor league system. Maybe, their lower minor teams have better prospects. Arte Moreno is a terrible owner and should sell the team liked he planned to do last season. I don’t get why Mike Trout resigned with the team and makes no demands to improve the situation. To have a team with Trout and Ohtani together for six years and not make the playoffs is a mystery to me. Dodger fans are so fortunate to have Guggenheim as owners and AF’s front office.

I’m hoping to see Walker Buehler have a successful 4-5 inning outing tonight. The Marlins are a good to team for him to face after a long TJ recovery.

Carry on.

Last edited 11 days ago by tedraymond
Badger

I think Moreno has tried to improve the team over the years, it just hasn’t worked. As for Trout, he signed that enormous contract and figured playing with Pujols, Ohtani and Rendon, plus the hitters they thought they had in the minors, would pay off. It hasn’t.

It was obvious to most this Dodgers team is unlike any other they’ve ever had. When everyone hits as they are capable of hitting they cannot be stopped. The question remains, will they all be there in September and October? I believe the key is giving them all proper rest over a very long season.

It’s May and the role players are approaching that point where evaluations, and possibly some hard decisions must be made. Taylor still looks inept to me. Is there a better option? Outman just has to improve on that swing and miss rate. The staff appears to be getting rest but the closer went down already. Somebody is next, I think that’s a given. Who will it be?

Buehler up. I hope for 5 innings. He might get it vs Miami. I’ll still take the under. They won’t take chances with him.

Duke Not Snider

The Sacramento River Cats are the Giants’ Triple A affiliate, and the Salt Lake Cty Bees are the Angels’. (I guess the A’s will temporarily move into the River Cats stadium before heading for Vegas. Whither the River Cats?)
At any rate, you are right that Angels have a very weak farm system. Part of the reason is how they rush promising players like Zach Neto and Nolan Schanuel so quickly to the majors.
Treinen looked sharp in his return, but now Evan Phillips and Brasier have joined Graterol on the IL. The bullpen churn and burn will continue.
But I’m still thinking AF should make a run at A’s Mason Miller to be closer.
In alumni news, it was nice to see a highlight of Jonny De Luca back in action for the Rays. Pepiot has been playing well too.

Oldbear48

Pepiot was knocked out of the game by a comebacker that hit him in the leg. He is day to day.

Phil Jones

Duke, you are right about the Angels weak farm system. I occasionally watch their A+ team in the NW League. The Dust Devils are consistently cellar dwellers. The entire organization, including the Big Club, is 48 and 91, for this season. They are last in the Cal St League, Inland Empire is last, the Bees are last in the PCL and the Big Club is last in the AL West. Only Rocket City in AA is not last with a 13&13 record.
I understand that winning in MiLB isn’t the focus in many organizations but watching locally, I see little coaching going on. I see the same mistakes and poor baseball repeatedly with no noticeable coaching going on.
I have seen very few prospects developed. I watched a 1st rounder, Jordan Adams, not hit or do much of anything for 2 seasons in A+. At 26, he’s in AAA now but has hit .246/.697 in the minors.
in the past 10 years, the Angels have whiffed on first round picks. The first 5 on the list have made zero impact in the Majors for the Angels or anybody. The latest 4 first rounders have 3 guys in the Majors; Reid Detmers, Neto and Schanuel, who you mentioned being rushed to the show.
A team just can’t miss on this many first rounders from the draft and development standpoint.

tedraymond

Thanks for the correction Duke. Sometimes the eyes, brain and fingers have connection issues. The players mentioned are from the Angels Salt Lake AAA team.

Scott Andes

Very good stretch for the team right now. Looks like everything is coming together nicely, pitching, hitting, defense, etc. all locked in.

One thing though we all need to recognize. Bobby Miller, Ryan Brasier, Even Phillips, Possibly Joe Kelly (reports say he tweaked his groin), Load Management does not work as inteded, nor does it prevent injuries. The best strategy for the Dodgers is simply to put the best lineup and pitching matchups on the field each day, and try to win every game.

No more load management, or scheduled bullpen games.

SpokaneBob

When your starters consistently go 6 or 7 innings, you need a bullpen game to get the arms in the BP some work or they become ineffective.

tedraymond

It’s a tough call. I don’t like the BP games because the team doesn’t know what the next few games might bring. Right now it’s awesome that the starters are going deeper into games. But, what if they have a BP game and then the next 2-3 games the starters only go two or three innings? Or have a couple of extra inning games.

I get the idea with trying to get the staff work and yet keep everyone fresh. That’s why there are many people with the Dodgers who are paid tens of millions of dollars trying to make that happen.

Last edited 11 days ago by tedraymond
Scott Andes

Getting guys work is a fine line between dumb load management, crushing your relievers into dust a month into the season.

Bluto

Austin Gauthier and Ben Casparius to AAA

Phil Jones

*Say what you will but sweeping the Braves is a big deal. You want to know where you stack up and we soundly kicked their ass.
*Joe Davis stats me to death. An early stat was last year Max Fried led the league in 1st inning ERA. This year he’s last. I know they track everything but after 6 starts this year is that really worth mentioning? Some pencil-neck geek spits shit like that out of his computer and Joe mentions it. 
I would much rather this crew mention a couple of other things instead.  
Maybe it’s mentioned on the SNLA Pre-Game show but since I watch on MLB Extra-Innings, I don’t get that. Just the game. So maybe we can get things of interest like the starting batting order for the visitors. Then the defensive alignment of the home team. I want to know who’s where before the visitors bat. And then a list of the umpires. We are the only booth that doesn’t offer up that stuff at the start of the game and I don’t know why.
*I had to look at the previous game’s box score to see who was the umpire behind the dish. Who was this guy who missed 3 pitches in the 1st. While Paxton got jobbed on a high fastball and a lower breaker, Fried got the same high pitch called a strike. It was Cory Blazer, who was horseshit all day.
Flip the coin a little higher back there.
*Every night somebody else is the star. Max on Saturday with 3 homers and Ohtani Sunday.  
*It would seem apparent that Max is in a platoon with Kike at third. After a 3 homer night and you’re not in the lineup the next day, that looks like a platoon.
*Nice to see Paxton get a nice outing. He cut the walks to 2 in 6+ and had more success.
*The Betts to Rojas double-play in the 3rd was a thing of beauty. Did you notice Rojas crossover the bag to cut down the distance on Mookie’s throw and get something on his relay to Freddie? Get feet on both ends. That is textbook. Sadly, Lux does not have that turn. He has one drop-step pivot with a weak relay throw. I really like the Mookie-Miggy combo. and visa-versa.
*Kike’s throw from the grass behind third of about 140 feet with Freddie’s awesome pick was something special, as well. We are playing some damn good D.
*Who was it that stated last week the Outman was a better defender in center then Pages? I’ve yet to see Pages not make all the plays and comfortably. I like Outman but were is the evidence that Pages is inferior in center?
*Awesome to see Treinen back. He can add much to the backend of the bullpen. Especially with Phillips on the DL. Hudson has been shaky lately. A Treinen – Phillips back end is what I want to see when Phillips gets healthy.  
*Grover has looked great in his recent 1 inning stints. Maybe that’s his best roll for now.
Don’t get lazy against the Marlins.

Bumsrap

If Rojas were younger, I too would be noting where his defense was better than Lux’ or Betts’ infield defense. I like him as a pinch hitter and as a guy who can give Betts, Lux, and Muncy a day off.

Position player wise, the Dodgers have locked up Smith, Freeman, and Betts, I would like to contractually lock up a few more. It’s too early maybe, but I would lockup Outman and Lux. I would also love to make Royce Lewis the Dodger third baseman for the next 8 years. I like what the Braves are doing regarding locking up players.

While I am farting around here, I would like to stop platooning.

Dodgerrick

You want to lock up 2 of the worst performing players on the team?

Oldbear48

There has never been a single player who has played in the majors who has not had a bad game or twenty. I saw Koufax get knocked around more than once. Same with Big D and the mouthpiece, Hershiser. Seen the best hitters in the game made to look silly by some kid they had never seen pitch. It all evens out. Fans expect, especially Dodger fans lately, perfection. Not happening, not in this game. When you as a hitter succeed 30 percent of the time, you are a superstar. This team is loaded with talent and role players. Not everyone is going to be hitting on all cylinders at the same time. Probably the weakest link in the chain right now is Taylor. I am not sure how long a leash he has. He is untradeable. The best thing would be for him to accept a demotion to AAA to work on his contact issues. But each and every day, to me at least, it seems like a DFA is in his future.

Bluto

Trade simulator thinks the Padres overpaid for Arraez.

https://www.baseballtradevalues.com/trades/166509

tedraymond

A damn shame Bluto! They are pretty good at it though. Lots of practice.

Bluto

Eh. I feel the trade simulator may slightly overvalue cost control, but then again I feel like owners should spend more.

Dionysus

“thinks”

Bluto

Good point.

“evaluates” would be a better verb.

Oldbear48

Buehler activated; no corresponding move announced yet.

Bluto

Ohtani has now homered in three straight with 4 HR in the same span.

In total, they have traveled a third of a mile! (1,709 feet w/an avg of 427.3 feet per)

Bluto

Interesting:

and

Last edited 10 days ago by Bluto
Badger

”If he goes 60-70 pitches he’s going to sit 100. He’s not stupid”

Does that first sentence mean he’s going to throw 100 mph? If it does, then he sounds stupid to me.

My training in exercise physiology tells me recovery time is important. Out of curiosity, what’s the rate of TJ surgery in Japan where starters pitch once a week?

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