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Is This Truly A WS Caliber Team As It Is?

I know there are those out there that believe that the team does not need to do anything to win the World Series this year.  They believe that there is enough on the current team and the farm system and do not need any at the deadline.

I am sorry, but that is the heart talking with Pollyanna rose-colored glasses.  This team has 4 starters in the rotation, and that will remain so almost thru the month of June.  Maybe longer, as hamstrings are tricky.  Hopefully not.  When was the last time an injury update has been correct coming from the Dodgers?

Then there is the bullpen, which ranks near the bottom in most categories.  While the starters are better, it is not nearly enough to make up for the poor bullpen.  But with only 4 starters, and at least one and maybe two of those not likely to pitch past the 5th inning, the reliance on a good bullpen is paramount, but not likely.  They would have to be outstanding, just to get back to mediocrity.  Sunday was the first of multiple forthcoming bullpen games, and it did not go well.  Will the next one?

One of the pitchers they were hoping would be available at the All Star break was Alex Reyes.  We now know he is not going to be available this year because of shoulder surgery.  He will probably not be available next year either.

This team is not a WS caliber team as it is currently built, and there is nobody left at OKC that can make a difference.  Unless you believe that Landon Knack and Emmet Sheehan are ready to make a difference this year.   Gavin Stone was that hope in the beginning of the season, but he does not appear to be ready to make a difference (right now).  Michael Grove???  Landon Knack and Emmet Sheehan are not Bobby Miller.

Offensively, now that Jonny DeLuca is in LA, there is not a RH hitting OF at OKC.  Michael Busch (LHH) and Yonny Hernandez (SH) are on the 40 man and could be recalled.  Jahmai Jones (RHH) and Devin Mann (RHH) are not on the 40 man but those are the four who are hitting at OKC.  The Dodgers are down to 1 player on the IL who is not on the 60 day…Noah Syndergaard.  Roster spots are going to be needed once any of these pitchers come off the IL.  Daniel Hudson?  Jimmy Nelson? Ken Giles?

  • Jahmai Jones – .312/.446/.580/1.026
  • Devin Mann – .301/.404/.557/.961
  • Michael Busch – .302/.422/.494/.916
  • Yonny Hernandez – .282/.422/.416/.838

The team is going to need to get more consistent production from others not named Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman, Will Smith, JD Martinez and David Peralta against RHP.  They are going to score runs.  But enough to compensate for the state of the pitching?

The injuries have taken their toll.  And it is going to become even more of a challenge with any more injuries, or player acquisitions.


I will never stop pulling for the team, and I do think they are competitive enough to make the playoffs.  But to believe that this team is a WS championship caliber team as it is currently constructed right now?  Can LAD at least get to 5 ML caliber starting pitchers?  Can LAD get a bullpen that is better than the what they currently are?

  • ERA – 4.76 (27th)
  • WHIP – 1.36 (23rd)
  • BAA – .255 (26th)
  • HR Allowed – 35 (3rd most)
  • BB Allowed – 92 (16th most)
  • SO/9 – 9.28 (14th)
  • BB/9 – 2.79 (8th)
  • K/BB – 2.79 (8th)

I do believe AF will find help.  It may not be who many are pining for.  But AF is not going to decimate the farm system.  He did not decimate the farm system when he acquired Rich Hill, Yu Darvish, Manny Machado, Mookie Betts, Max Scherzer, Trea Turner, or Chris Martin.  I am not convinced there are going to be difference makers available.  I hope I am wrong, and I hope that AF will decide which prospects he can package to acquire those difference makers.  They are going to need a #3 SP who can consistently pitch 6.0 innings and 7.0 innings multiple other games. They are also going to need RP, preferably late inning high leverage that the Dodgers might move to closer.

Liam Hendriks is back on the IL, and it is unlikely he will get enough pitching in before the trade deadline to determine if he is someone they should pursue.

As we get closer to the deadline, and we see what teams are definitely sellers, we can begin to review their rosters to see if there is anyone who might interest AF.


06-11-2023 – MiLB Summary Report


OKC Dodgers 24 – El Paso Chihuahuas (San Diego) 5

OKC scored 24 runs on 21 hits, including 7 doubles and 3 HRs, and 13 walks.  One of the HRs was a grand slam by Justin Yurchak,  Yurchak also had a three run triple for 7 RBIs.   Every OKC player had at least 1 hit.  6 OKC players had 2 or more and 5 had 3 or more.

This was a huge offensive day for OKC.

  • Drew Avans – 4-6, 2 runs, 5 RBIs, 1 BB, double (7), HR (7)
  • Michael Busch – 3-6, 2 runs, 3 RBIs, 1 BB, double (15), HR (6) – HR in 3 of last 4 games
  • Jahmai Jones – 2-6, 2 runs, 1 RBI.1 BB, double (15)
  • Ryan Ward – 1-4, 4 runs, 3 BB, double (15)
  • Devin Mann – 3-6, 3 runs, 1 RBI, 1 BB
  • Kole Calhoun – 3-6, 5 runs, 2 RBIs,1 BB, 2 doubles (3)
  • David Freitas – 1-2, 2 runs, 3 RBIs, 3 BB
  • Justin Yurchak, – 3-5, 2 runs, 7 RBIs, 1 BB, double (15), HR (2)

Matt Andriese went the first 5.1 IP for the win.

The box score will give the most information.

Box Score



Arkansas Travelers (Seattle) 7 – Tulsa Drillers 6

The Tulsa Drillers and Arkansas Travelers met in the finale of an important six-game series. The Drillers were looking for their third straight win that would give them a series split and increase their first-place lead in the standings.

The Travelers had other ideas, breaking a tie with a three-run sixth inning that eventually led to a 7-4 loss for the Drillers. The result gave the Travelers four wins in the six-game series and moved them to within one game of the first-place Drillers in the North Division standings of the Texas League.

Tulsa scored first in the game with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Austin Gauthier drew a leadoff walk and advanced to second on a base hit by Jorbit Vivas.

After a strikeout, Imanol Vargas plated Gauthier when he dropped a single into centerfield.

The Travelers got their first run when hitter Riley Unroe led off the third inning with his third home run of the year, tying the score at 1-1.

Tulsa’s hope of salvaging a series split disappeared with a tough sixth inning. It began with a solo homer from Robert Perez Jr. that gave the Travelers the lead.

The inning got worse from there for the Drillers. John Rooney took over for Ryan Sublette on the mound, and he walked Isiah Gilliam. Rooney had Gilliam picked off first, but first baseman Vargas hesitated before throwing to second, allowing Gilliam to slide in safely.

An error put runners at the corners, setting up consecutive RBI singles that increased the Arkansas lead to 4-1.

The Travelers added to their lead with three more runs in the seventh inning.

Eddys Leonard made things interesting in the bottom of the ninth. After the inning began with consecutive singles from Yusniel Diaz and Diego Cartaya, Leonard belted his seventh home run of the season.

The Drillers would get no closer as reliever Isaiah Campbell recovered to retire the next three batters to end the game.

Kyle Hurt got the start on the mound for Tulsa, and he delivered four effective innings. Hurt allowed just three hits and the one run on Unroe’s homer. He walked one batter and struck out eight.

Jake Pilarski pitched 2 perfect innings to close out the 8th and 9th with three Ks.


Box Score


Great Lakes – Game Postponed – Game will not be made up


Modesto Nuts (Seattle) 6 – Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 0

The Rancho Cucamonga Quakes endured their second shutout of the year on Sunday at John Thurman Field, suffering a 6-0 defeat at the hands of the Modesto Nuts.

Quakes’ starter Peter Heubeck (0-5) didn’t pitch poorly, allowing three runs in four innings, but didn’t get much in the way of offensive support, as Rancho finished with just four hits on the day.  He also had 6 strikeouts to go with his 3 BB.

Five Modesto pitchers combined on the blanking, with starter Riley Davis (2-0) getting the win by allowing just two hits over five scoreless frames.

The Quakes (33-24) will enter Tuesday’s series in San Jose with at least a 3.5 game lead over the Lake Elsinore Storm (San Diego) and Inland Empire 66ers (LAA), who entered Sunday’s action at 4.5 games back.

  • Thayron Liranzo – 1-3 double (7)

Box Score



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As I see it right now, they are no where near a World Championship caliber team. As a matter of fact they are the third or maybe fourth best in the NL. They have too many holes in the lineup, a weak starting staff and a very inconsistent bull pen. I would not be surprised if AF actually does pull off some sort of blockbuster trade to add power and a starting arm at the deadline. I have no clue who he might target, but I would even venture to say that there are ideas being tossed around in the front office and the scouting system right now. I simply see no one at AAA who would be of immediate help. Especially bull pen arms.


Bryan Hudson maybe? Mark Washington? Knack? Nastrini?

Asked Dave Roberts why #Dodgers chose bullpen game over Gonsolin on regular rest today: “I think with Tony, the recovery hasn’t been great. So trying to appreciate the short and the long term, making sure we take care of him and his health, making sure the recovery .

Gonsolin has always made me nervous. It feels like he’s always one split finger away from TJ surgery.


For all the positive accolades given to AF, and he deserves many, the roster construction this year was weak from the beginning. Syndergaard, in hindsight, was a horrible signing and the apparent indecision to what looked like an effort to get under the CBT and then not along with the belief Trayce Thompson was an every day MLB and Peralta and Heyward are the same player.

The Lux injury hurts a lot, but this team just doesn’t appear versatile enough and not enough team speed to create runs sans the long ball.


*Last year the same bullpen pitchers were reliable. Could the difference be that because there is no closer they do not have set roles?
*The Lux injury had a profound effect
* Trayce hits right handers,period
* Another good rh bat would be helpful
* Patience will see pitching depth return
Get a closer and trade Peralta for a similar but right handed outfielder, also trade for another reliable starter.

Last edited 1 year ago by Dave

World Series no. Playoffs, maybe.

The team as is won’t be around for the duration of the season. The offense appears ok, we can score, but the pitching staff will need a buttress. Can that come from within? Not likely.

The goal is to make the playoffs. A post season rotation of Urias, May, Gonsolin and Kershaw looked pretty good in April. Now it’s Kershaw, Gonsolin, maybe Urias and…. Bobby Miller? The bullpen was functioning fine for a while. I have no clear vision of what it might look like in September.

Everything we may need to finish this off may not be available. One starter and one late inning reliever might do it. That would cost maybe more than the team wants to pay.

It’s still too early to make predictions, but if I had to I’d say Urias comes back, May doesn’t, Thor is kept around, we make a trade for a starter and the bullpen works itself out. We make the playoffs.

Last edited 1 year ago by Badger

No, right now this is not a WS championship caliper team. If some things don’t change, we not even make the playoffs.

That is what you get for signing injured relief pitchers hoping for miracles. The bargain bin shopping for reclamation projects is another contributing factor to this teams many holes. I don’t believe there are going to be very many difference makers available at the deadline. Really can only hope that some of our pitchers get healthy and come back strong. Especially Urias and May.

Last edited 1 year ago by OhioDodger

There is no real way of knowing who will be available in 6 weeks. So many things could happen between now and then.

If May and Urias both come back, the starting pitching issues could be solved. We still have some very strong arms in the bullpen but it feels like they are pitching too often. Short outings by starters and bullpen games this early isn’t what this team, or any team for that matter, is designed to do.

It is still a bumfuddle to me that 6 innings is the measure of a Major League starter. But that’s where we are. If we had 5 starters who could go 6 the bullpen issues would go away. That doesn’t seem like a huge ask to me but in today’s game it most certainly is.

What’s the answer? I don’t know. My thinking on this feels outdated. One thing is for sure, this team has to score 6-7 every night and that can’t be done. Right now we are averaging 5.56 and that’s third in MLB. Rangers at 6.25 and Tampa at 5.75 are the leaders. The Dbacks are fourth. Can they keep that up?

Last edited 1 year ago by Badger

I agree with you Badger on the innings pitched per outing expectations these days. I thought it was done maybe to reduce the need to pay starters high salaries. Why pay a starter $20-$30M to pitch only 5-6 innings?

Another example of reduced standards throughout today’s society.


I have always viewed this year as transitional and have not thought of this team as championship contenders. The flaws in the roster are many and pretty obvious:
1 – Infield defense. Max Muncy is not and will never be a good defensive 3B. Miguel Vargas is still learning 2B. His hands are not particularly good.
2 – Outfield offense. Mookie is great but he’s not always playing OF these days. On days that they face a RHP, they play Peralta, Outman and Heyward. Peralta’s OPS is .674. Outman is hitting .233 and strikes out 41% of the time. Heyward is hitting .233. On days when they face a lefty, Rojas plays SS and his OPS is .493.
3 – Rotation. I am surprised that this isn’t a strength. Miller has been great in a small sample. Kershaw is still Kershaw. I don’t have confidence in Gonsolin at this point of the season. NO one expected Urias to be injured and ineffective. Or May to be out all year. And I had hopes for the Syndergaard experiment that just didn’t pan out. Right now this team has 2 or 3 starters – Grove still hasn’t proven that he can get people out. This year his ERA is 8.28, BAA is .305. Career ERA is 6.29 and BAA is .281. Even if Urias comes back, they still need 1 or 2 more starters.
4 – Bullpen. I really thought that the ‘pen would be good this year. Vesia has not adjusted to the time clock (he averaged over 25 seconds to the plate last year) and cannot be counted on. Almonte has reverted to his Rockies’ performance. Graterol and Ferguson can’t be counted on in big moments. Miller can’t throw strikes (17 BB in 28 IP). This is probably the easiest problem to fix at the deadline.

Realistically, they need a RHH outfielder who hits lefties, 1 or 2 SP, a couple of relievers. Maybe a SS.

This is a season to see if any of the prospects from their highly touted farm system are gold or fool’s gold. So far, Miller looks great but it’s only been 4 games. Stone looks bad but only 3 starts. Grove has intriguing stuff but no results yet. As many predicted, there seems to be too much swing and miss in Outman’s game for him to be more than a backup. And Vargas really hasn’t impressed.

After this season, they will take stock and regroup. Peralta, Heyward, Martinez, Kershaw, Shelby Miller, Syndergaard, Urias, Almonte (I think) are all free agents at the end of the season. They will have some money to play with and some decisions to make.

But not the Series this year.


As things sit right now there doesn’t appear that this Dodger team has the pitching to not only get to the WS, but may not even get to the postseason. Between the injuries to the starting staff and the ineffectiveness/overuse of the relievers this staff may be the worst in LA Dodger history.

As Jeff D mentioned above the front office can NEVER give an honest assessment or projection on the health of a Dodger pitcher. Why that is I do not know. And AF’s obsession with signing veteran, injured to the point of being career ending pitchers makes no sense. I think there were 3-4 of them last year. With the announcements that they could be ready by midseason. Well, for sure, being ready for the final month. Oh, definitely healthy for the postseason. And they NEVER pitch for the team. Millions wasted. The prime example of this is Jimmy Nelson. This is year four he has been signed with the Dodgers. He has made $4.9M + incentives to pitch 29 innings (2021). Please, give me some type of explanation for the fascination AF has with Jimmy Nelson? With the hundreds of other pitchers out there in the baseball universe, Jimmy Nelson is the chosen one.
And it continues this year with the above mentioned Nelson, along with Blake Treinen, Alex Reyes, Daniel Hudson, JP Feyereisen, and Tyler Cyr. The only reason for having these players on the roster is for roster flexibility. Otherwise, I don’t understand how AF puts together a pitching staff in this way.

It seems to be the opinion that Dustin May will be back in August or so. I have a bad feeling that Dustin’s career is over. Maybe, as a reliver. But, as a starter I don’t think his arm can take a multi inning workload. I hope I’m wrong because he was fun to watch pitch. I feel Gonsolin is headed down the same road. And, with Walker Buehler’s return (please, next season) I see him in the BP as well. These smaller stature guys’ arms just don’t hold up throwing 98-100 MPH as starters.

How baseball has changed. I noticed that the Phils have Kyle Schwarber hitting leadoff. A guy that’s hitting .171, a .323 OBP, and has a 29% strikeout rate. This is not what was looked for in a leadoff hitter pre analytics. But, he does have 17 HRs. It’s all about the slug. Weird.

I’m enjoying watching the rookie position players’ successes and failures. It’s a long season and even if the team isn’t playoff bound it will be interesting to watch all the prospects grow and improve.
Carry on.


Reyes is definitely out of the picture now. He had shoulder surgery the other day and is not expected back until sometime next year. Hudson is getting closer. Urias needs at least one maybe two rehab starts.


A leadoff hitter with a .323 OBP seems antithetical to me. But, perhaps the antilytics say otherwise. The leadoff guy only hits leadoff once, but is that the guy you want hitting in front of your best hitters. I think I would go with Turner.

Your take on May is similar to mine. I hope he’s back, if only maybe as a long reliever. Same with Buehler. Limit their pitch counts and maybe more surgeries won’t be needed. I could see Buehler as a closer.

I’m still hopeful of a playoff spot. This recent 3-7 run is temporary. Every team has them. This is our turn.

Singing the Blue

Buehler has the perfect mind set and pitch assortment to be an excellent closer. Problem is convincing him he doesn’t want to be a starter any more. I think that would be a very tough conversation.

Convincing him to do it for the 2023 playoffs, he’s going to listen.
Convincing him to do it for the rest of his career, not so much.
Compare what the highest paid reliever is making vs the highest paid starter.


Good point. He’s a free agent after next year. He’s going to want that starter money.

If he does intend to come back this year, hopefully it’s late in the year and his innings can be kept at a minimum. I think letting him work out of the bullpen this year would be good for both him and the team.

That second TJ could be a deal breaker for many teams out there. That being the case, if he insists on starting, turn him loose.

Rob Schelling

It’s only June 12th. Maybe not today, but let’s see where we are come September.


Voit signs a minor league deal with the Mets. Matt Beaty finds a new home back in the Royals system as he signs a minor league deal with them. Angels signed 38 year old Daniel Murphy to a minor league deal MLBTR is saying that Cody Bellinger could be traded to the Astros who are looking for a left-handed bat.


Friedman and Gomes with some nice quotes in this OCRegister/Plunkett piece:

Dodgers digging into a bullpen that is among MLB’s worst


“When you have count leverage, you’ve got to be able to get swing-and-miss”

Ideally, yes. But I would argue that with count leverage it’s more important to command the edges and get weak contact. The idea is to get outs.

Gonsolin is another guy on this staff that would make a good late inning reliever. Throw your split finger for 3 outs and sit down for the next 48 hours.

I have been under the impression we will be getting several arms back for the second half. That’s still true, right?

I saw the name Bryan Hudson at OKC and his numbers looked good – 27.2 IP, 47 Ks, 2.28 ERA, 1.19 WHIP. He’s 26 and listed at 6’8”. What can you tell me about him Jeff.

Last edited 1 year ago by Badger

I think Badger, the prevailing wisdom is to preference swing-and-miss pitchers than those who pitch to contact or generate weak contact.

Weak contact can still lead to hits (more than before with the shift banned) strikeouts cannot.


I agree Bluto. That’s why I said “Ideally, yes”. I guess I just took issue with “you’ve GOT to be able to get”. I believe what you’ve got to get is the out. Hit the edges with your best pitch.


I mostly wanted a good righty bat and shortstop added to the Dodgers before the season began. I was ready to include May, Urias, and Muncy as key pieces to get good back.

I have worried about May staying on the mound but for some reason I felt a comebacker would be the reason and not an elbow. Urias always pitched better than I thought he would and once he was a year away from being a free agent, I was ready to see what he would get in return.

I think the Dodgers will have Buehler, Kershaw, Miller, and Gonsolin for the Playoffs. I think Stone will join and stay in the rotation this year and may also be part of the playoffs plan.

The Dodgers need Outman and Vargas to provide some depth to the lineup. I’d rather have Rojas at third and Betts at short.


Well, we got a shortstop and a right handed bat, and we did it without trading anybody. Anybody important that is. Amaya won’t be missed.

You don’t think Urias will be pitching in the post season?

I’ve read some people believe Muncy and Vargas are good defenders. I’m not buying it. I’m sure Rojas would be fine at third, but on this team I keep him at short and live with his bat. I like Betts at second but prefer he played in right. Honestly I don’t think where these guys play matters all that much. It’s the pitching that matters.

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