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Dodger Baseball

Mike Marshall: The Moose

In the 6th round of the draft in 1978, the Dodgers picked a 6’5″ outfielder from Libertyville, Illinois named Mike Marshall. He would go on to play on two World Champion teams, the 81 and 88 squads.

Michael Allen Marshall was born in Libertyville Illinois on January 12th, 1960. His parents were Frank and Sandy Marshall. His dad had been a farmer, but went into the printing business. He has an older sister, Terri.

When he was selected in the sixth round by the Dodgers, he was just finishing up his senior year at Buffalo Grove High. Buffalo Grove is about 10 miles south of Libertyville and 30 miles north of Wrigley Field.

Mike later said:

“I used to skip school once in a while and take a bus down to see the Cubs. It was a different world down there. You never expect to play in the majors and then it happens so fast.”

Once the L.A. Times did a profile on him in October of 1985. The subtitle reflected his serious approach to the game.

“If He Smiled More and Struck out Less.”  Well Maybe just Smiled More.”

He evidently was a serious young man, dedicated to the pursuit of a career in sports.

He was signed by Guy Wellman and Glen Van Proyen with a bonus of just under 30,000 dollars. He was sent to Lethridge in the Pioneer League, (Rookie Ball). He had a very good year, .324/12/70 in 70 games.

He was sent to Class-A Lodi in the California League in 1979. He would play in 137 games. He would play first base and DH exclusively. His line was .354/24/116 and he was named the MVP of the league. He was already being considered as the replacement for Steve Garvey.

He moved to AA San Antonio in 1980. He hit a solid .321 with 16 long balls and 82 RBIs. At the end of the season there was some talk of a trade with the Red Sox that would have brought Fred Lynn to LA for Marshall and a couple of other players. It, of course, never came to fruition.

In 1981, Mike went to AAA Albuquerque. He began making his own headlines and pushing the other Mike Marshall, who was a union rep in the strike shortened season, aside.

The Dukes went all the way that year under Del Crandall, and Mike won the triple crown, becoming the first player to do that in the PCL in 25 years. His line, .373/34/137. He also scored 114 runs and stole 21 bases. He was the league’s MVP.

The Dodgers called the star slugger up for a look-see in September. He saw his first game action when he pinch ran for Garvey in the bottom of the first inning on September 7th. In his first at bat in the third against the Giants, Ed Whitson, he doubled off the top of the wall in left-center field. When Cey followed with a homer, he scored his first run.

He was primarily used as a pinch hitter. He had 5 hits, 3 were doubles and he drove in one run. He was on the playoff roster and earned a World Series ring. But he only had one AB in the playoffs and struck out. That winter he was named Minor League Player of the Year by the Sporting News.

He started the 82 season at AAA Albuquerque hitting .388 with 14 homers and 58 RBIs in 66 games. He was recalled to LA on June 27th. On June 29th he hit his first MLB homer, a solo shot in a loss to the Padres. In 49 games he hit .242 with 5 homers but only 9 RBIs.

He became a regular in 1983. Learning a new position, he played RF in 109 games and 33 at first. Both Garvey and Cey had left. Garvey as a free agent and Cey in a trade to the Cubs.

Greg Brock took Garvey’s job at first, and the Dodgers moved Pedro Guererro to third. Marshall found a home in RF. He had been beaned in April and then suffered being knocked unconscious in a collision with Duane Kuiper on the basepaths, so he was only hitting .224 by the end of May.

But he finished at .284/17/65. He hit .311 after the All-Star Break. The Dodgers won the west, but lost the NLCS 3 games to one to the Phillies. Marshall was 2-15 in the series.

Moose changed positions again in 84, moving from right field to left. Despite spending 21 days on the disabled list after foot surgery in May, he was selected as an All-Star. He had a 5 hit game in April with 2 homers and 6 RBIs in a 15-7 win over the Padres. He also learned he needed to have surgery on his right patella tendon,an old basketball injury from high school. He only hit .257, but had 21 homers to lead the team and matched his 65 RBIs from the year before. He was named the Dodgers MVP by the Southern California baseball writers.

In 1985, the Dodgers again won the NL West. Marshall again missed time, this because of an emergency appendectomy. But he hit .293/28/95. He drove in 13 runs in his last 11 games of the season, including 3 in the October 2 division clincher against the Braves. He also homered in that game.

“Nobody believed in this team except Lasorda and the 25 guys in the locker room.” He said. ” Nobody expected us to do anything, but we didn’t give up, Tommy wouldn’t let us.”

The Dodgers would lose in six games to the Cardinals. Down three games to two in the bottom of the 8th inning, Marshall hit a tie-breaking homer off of Todd Worrell to put the Dodgers ahead, but Jack Clark’s three run shot in the top of the 9th clinched the pennant for the Redbirds.

In 1986, Marshall and the Dodgers struggled badly. Bothered by back pain and stiffness, he appeared in only 103 games. He hit only .233 with 19 homers and 53 driven in. The Dodgers fell to a 73-89 mark and 5th place.

One of the criticisms of Marshall was his penchant for striking out and his lack of base on balls. In 85, he struck out 100 more times than he walked, 137-37. In 1987, he had 428 plate appearances and only walked 18 times.

Mike had avoided arbitration with the Dodgers and signed a one year contract. But again, he had issues which limited his playing time, surgery to remove a wart, recurring back issues and a thigh strain. Then there was a dustup with Pedro Guerrero who accused him of malingering.

Then in September, he had a confrontation with teammate, Phil Garner. Dodger Stadium crowds even began booing him. But he finished with a career high, .294 average, 16 homers and 72 RBIs.

Once again he was the subject of trade talk in the offseason. But he was back with LA in 1988. He also had an injury free season. For him, that made all the difference. He had a good year with a .277/20/82 line. The 82 RBI’s led the team. But Gibson was the catalyst. He would hit .230 in the postseason, with 1 homer and 8 driven in. The homer and 3 of the RBIs came in the World Series on his three-run shot off of Storm Davis in game two.

But the media and even some of his teammates were questioning his ailments. They felt he wasn’t tough enough and would not play through injuries. Still, after the 88 Series was over, LA signed him to a three-year three million dollar deal. They hoped the added security would help him.

But 1989 was another injury-plagued year. His ongoing back problem prompted another suggestion that he did not play hurt, this time from Al Downing, who was working for KABC at the time. He played in 105 games, hit .260 with 11 homers and 42 RBIs.

That was enough for the Dodgers to cut bait and trade him and Alejandro Peña to the Mets on Dec 20th for Juan Samuel.

He won the first base job with the Mets, but ended up playing in only 53 games for the Mets. He did get a measure of revenge against LA with a 6 RBI game against them on May 22nd. 4 of those came on a grand-slam homer. But by mid-June, he felt he did not fit in with the Mets. He also had a confrontation with manager Bud Harrelson over playing time.

He ended up in the hospital with gastro-intestinal duodenitis. (Inflammation of your stomach lining).

Replaced at first by Dave Magadan, he asked the Mets for a trade at the end of the season.

They didn’t wait that long, on July 27th, he was traded to the Red Sox for three minor leaguers.  Ed Perozo, Greg Hansell and Paul Williams. He was hitting .239/6/27 at the time. In 30 games for the Sox he hit .286/4/12. He would go 1-3 in the playoff loss to the A’s.

He started the 91 season with the Sox, but he wasn’t playing much. He hit .290 in limited action with 1 homer. He asked for a trade, and he was offered around with no takers, so the Sox released him. The Angels signed him hoping for some offense, but in 7 at bats, he did not get a hit and he was released.

Mike was 31, but not ready to retire. But his MLB career was over. His line, .270/148/530. If you look at his 11 year career, he did not even average 100 games a season, 1035. Injuries were a huge part of his career, and in my opinion, his numbers reflect that. When he was healthy, he was a productive bat.

Mike signed a two-year deal with the Nippon Ham Fighters for 1992. He played in 67 games, mostly as an outfielder, and hit .246/9/26. He suffered a groin pull and was sent to the DL for the 9th time in his career and then sent to the minors to rehab.

In 1993, he signed a minor league deal with the Mariners, and received an invite to spring training. He also confided to writer, Ross Newhan, that he had been his own worst enemy. “When you’re 22 and a big leaguer, you think you know it all. I should have been more open to input from others. On March 17th, 1993, Marshall announced his retirement from baseball.

He coached at Glendale Junior College in 94, and was the hitting instructor at Southwest Texas State in 95-96. He said he wanted to stay home with his wife, Mary and their two young children. His son, Michael jr. and his daughter, Marcheta both eventually graduated from Stanford University.

Mike gradually re-engaged with baseball. In 1999, he signed with the Schaumburg Flyers of the Northern League Central, as a player-coach. He appeared in 33 games driving in 21 and hitting his last two professional homers.

He became manager of the Albany Diamond Dogs in 2000 and held that job until the team folded in 2002. In 2005-06 he managed the independent El Paso Diablos. 2007-08 he did pretty much everything as the GM-manager of the Yuma Bullfrogs/Scorpions in the independent Golden Baseball League.

Marshall also traveled to Germany and Slovenia to run baseball camps for the kids. They toured some Army bases in Germany during the Iraq war. In 2010-11, Mike was the President and field manager of the Chico Outlaws. He then was VP and manager for the San Rafael Pacifics in 2012 and led them to the Championship.

In 2013, Mike was the commissioner of the four team, Pacific Association of Professional Baseball Clubs. For 15 years he had worked in almost every aspect of independent baseball in hopes of showing affiliated baseball that he now understands toughness and teamwork.

Marshall realized that maybe sometimes he should have tried to play through his malady’s. He always thought the team would be better off with someone at 100 percent. Maybe he should have taken the lesson players learned from Kirk Gibson in 88.

Marshall moved to Las Vegas, New Mexico and became the Associate Head Coach of the New Mexico Highlands baseball team from 2015-2020.

Since then, Mike has kept a low profile and maintained his privacy. I always liked Marshall. I also thought he should have been a better player than he was. But like most fans, I haven’t a clue what went on behind closed doors in the clubhouse. But during the 80’s, I saw him hit a few when I went to see the Dodgers play. I thought, if this guy was ever healthy a full season, he could hit 50 easy.

 

 

 

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Dionysus

Liked him. His line drive singles to CF bent he hit them so hard.

dodgerpatch

I remember the flak he took when was sidelined due to “general soreness.” You’d think the PR Dept. would have come up with an ailment that sounded a little more compelling. It’s almost like they were throwing him under the bus.

I was really new to being a Dodger fan when that new crop of Dodgers was considered the heir apparent. That Dukes squad with Greg Brock and Marshall I think even beat the MLB team in an exhibition game.

Just looked at the 82 Dukes roster. I didn’t realize that, in addition to Brock and Marshall, who were the can’t miss headliners, they had: John Franco, Sid Bream, Sid Hernandez, Alejandro Pena, Tom Niedenfuer, Candy Maldonado, Brian Holton. All of those guys had an impact at the MLB level.

Duke Not Snider

Whenever Marshall stepped to the plate, he just looked like a guy who could do a lot of damage. Often he did…. (And didn’t he date Belinda Carlisle for a while? Because heaven is a place on Earth?)
Interesting post-Dodgers journey…
Meanwhile, mlb.com has helped explain why it makes sense for Shohei to bat behind Mookie and Freddie. Here are some Shohei stats:

“With bases empty, 2022-23

  • .276/.354/.534
  • .888 OPS 146 OPS+

With runners on, 2022-23

  • .303/.419/.648
  • 1.067 OPS 179 OPS+

That’s the one. That’s a huge difference, and all of a sudden, he’s going to a lineup that may have two truly elite hitters in front of him.
Not that this is exactly unique to Ohtani; across the Majors, hitters had a better OPS with runners on (.753) as compared to bases empty, (.720). That’s likely a combination of A) the added difficulty of holding the runner on and B) the lesser quality of a pitcher allowing runners on base in the first place.”

Note that Shohei’s OPS with runners on was about 180 points higher, compared to the 33 point average.
The premise of the article is how the Dodgers’ lineup should make Shohei an even more productive hitter than he has been with the Angels. Past performance, of course, is not a guarantee of future returns… but I’m optimistic.
I assume Teoscar will also benefit from being in a better lineup.

Isn’t it nice to be a Dodgers fan?

dodgerpatch

“the lesser quality of a pitcher allowing runners on base in the first place.”

When I saw the stats you just posted this is what immediately came to mind, and I think this explains most of that statistical difference.

I would say that having great hitters both before and after his spot in the order would help him a lot. Having fantastic hitters like Mookie and Freddie likely already in scoring position with a double doesn’t give a pitcher the luxury to pitch around Ohtani and put another guy on base. Having a quality hitter behind Ohtani doesn’t give the pitcher the luxury of pitching around him to give that hitter a chance to drive Ohtani in.

Oldbear48

Shohei has hit second or third most of the time. He has better stats in the two hole, more homers, RBIs and BA. But his stats in the three are not that far off from his stats as a two. Hitting second, he was protected by Trout usually in his first few seasons. The last couple of years, that has not been the case with Trout sidelined by injuries. Roberts stated the other day that the lineup is going to be flexible. Ohtani hits 31 points lower against LHP. So I think he will probably be moved between 2 and 3 most of the season. Hernandez and Smith and maybe even Muncy, will all get shots in the cleanup spot. Muncy looked pretty good in BP the other day.

dodgerpatch

Someone else here said he looked “svelte” (talking about Muncy). If he put in some work over the off-season, is in great shape, and is completely over his arm injury, I’m hopeful he gets back to being 2021 Muncy.

BTW, Max is 33. Just reading your Mike Marshall article, he was done at 31. Most MLB players started their precipitous decline around the age 30 year. It’s a bit of a testament to how modern sports understands better how to keep athletes in shape and blunt age related declines.

Duke Not Snider

Max is one of my favorites. Great story. Such a grinder.
He’s probably cost himself millions by never testing free agency–but he loves being a Dodger, partly in gratitude for resurrecting his career.
Rhys Hoskins just signed a $34 million contract for two years with the Brewers. Max is getting $24 million for two years with the richest team in the game.

Duke Not Snider

I like Shohei batting third for a few reasons.
There is no wrong answer here–we have three HOF talents in their prime–but I’ll try to explain my reasoning.
The first point is sort of sentimental. Mookie-Freddie have just been a great pairing, and if it ain’t broke…
Putting Shohei behind them could make them better for the reasons you cite. Maybe Freddie will win the batting title and reach 60 doubles.
If Mookie and Freddie maintain the .400 OBP they had in ’23, there’s a strong possibility that Shohei will step to the plate in the first inning with at least one of them on base, and sometimes both. If both are on base, then Shohei comes to the plate with no outs.
Would the opponents “pitch around” Ohtani and risk loading the bases with no outs? Would there be an intentional walk? Perhaps. But I don’t mind having Will Smith or Teoscar step to the plate in that situation. In this way, Shohei should make whomever is hitting behind him better too.

I’ll be repeating myself (again) but the additions of Shohei, Teoscar and Lux don’t just add firepower but also serious speed to this lineup. They are replacing JDM, Peralta and Rojas, not exactly spring chickens. Yes, Lux is coming off a knee injury, but ACL surgery didn’t slow down Acuna. The added power in the lineup is obvious, but the collective speed of this team will add to the runs and ABs.
The Braves lineup is still awesome, and perhaps better with Kelenic added. But I’d wager the Dodgers produce more runs this season.
And the pitching looks better too. Great reports about Treinen’s progress from spring training….

tedraymond

Duke, it absolutely is a great time to be a Dodger fan and has been for several years. This year AF has assembled quite a team and expectations are through the roof. It could historic I agree with the article on Ohtani hitting in the three spot.

Not only will Ohtani and Hernandez benefit by being surrounded by better players, but by playing for a team that has a legitimate shot at winning a World Series. It could be an environment where several Dodgers could have career years.

I know it won’t happen, but it would be cool to have KIki on this team. Without an injury situation I don’t see a spot for him right now. A trade of Margot could create a spot and I think give the team more versatility. If it’s meant to be it will happen.

Looking forward to Thursday’s game!
Carry on.

Oldbear48

Kike is not coming back, and I doubt they would even consider trading Margot before the season. The Angels are looking at both Kike and Rosario.

Duke Not Snider

Kike on the Angels would be good. I hope they sign JDM too, and why not Blake Snell?
The Halos need help!

Oldbear48

They definitely need help everywhere. Montgomery is still out there and Texas has said they are not adding any more significant salary. I think they ought to take a chance on Bellinger. Move Trout to left, and sign JD to be the designated hitter. Kike would be a great utility guy for them. Whitfield signed with the Phillies.

Oldbear48

Yes, at one point he was dating Belinda Carlisle. I remember all the flak Kemp got when he was dating Rhiana. Bo Belinski, a real flash in the pan, who pitched for the Angels, at one time was dating Diana Dors. A Jayne Mansfield clone.

Phil Jones

And Maime Van Doren

Oldbear48

Almost forgot Mamie. He sure liked those buxom blondes.

Duke Not Snider

Hubba hubba.
Bo was THE MAN!

Oldbear48

He had one bright shining moment, his no-hitter, and lived off of that for his entire 8-year career. He had exactly one winning season.

Jeff Dominique

Not wanting to hijack this excellent look back at Mike Marshall post, but I have to acknowledge yet another great #22. Caitlin Clark, University of Iowa Basketball Superstar, is now the all-time leader NCAA Women’s Basketball scoring leader. She now has 3,569 career points, including 478 3-pointers. Clark’s career average from the 3-point range may indeed be just over 38%, but her average distance during the 2022-2023 season was 25 feet, 11 inches — about 4 feet farther out than the men’s and women’s 3-point line. Three-point shots made 25 feet and out have been affectionately dubbed “logo 3s.”

Technically she is 98 points behind Pistol Pete Maravich, but Maravich did not get the benefit of 3-point shots, and many of his shots would have been of the 3 shot variety. She will pass Maravich this year, and probably before the tournament.

Because Clark’s freshman season was interrupted by Covid, the NCAA is granting her an extra year, so she can come back next year for One-More-Year. She is already earning high 6-figure NIL money, and if she comes back should easily exceed $1MM. Iowa averages more than 8,000 in attendance more than the averrage WNBA game (6,615). Thus, it is not a foregone conclusion that Clark will enter the WNBA draft.

She is not just a prolific scorer, but she also leads the nation in assists with 8.3/game. She is one of only 6 Division 1 NCAA Women’s Basketball players with over 1,000 career assists.

USC has their own budding Women’s Basketball superstar …JuJu Watkins. She is averaging 27.7 points per game as a true freshman, which is about 3 points per game better than Clark’s freshman season.

Okay, now back to Mike Marshall.

Oldbear48

I read about that this morning. Pretty cool. Today is my daughters birthday. Makes me feel even older!!!! Working on the Newcombe story for you.

Bumsrap

Don’t the Lakers need a 3 point shooter?

Oldbear48

Lakers need more than just a three-point shooter. Warriors inquired at the trade deadline about LeBron James availability.

OhioDodger

Another great article Bear.

I remember Marshall as being adequate. Not bad, not great. I was not an avid fan in the 1980’s as I was in pre-med and med school at Ohio State from 1981 to 1989. I followed the team and rooted for them, but, I was not fully invested. Fernando Mania and Orel/Gibson 1988 are about all I remember from the 1980’s Dodgers.

Last edited 2 months ago by OhioDodger
Oldbear48

You missed a lot. 83 and 85 teams had real shots to go to the series. Tommy having Niedenfuer pitch to Clark with two on and two out was a huge mistake in game six of the 85 series. Van Slyke, who was hitting about .091 for the series was on deck. Ozzie Smith also hit a game winning shot that series. It also came off of Niedenfuer. Sad thing was that they won the first two games.

Last edited 2 months ago by Oldbear48
OhioDodger

Yep, that 85 series with the Cards was very disappointing. Not as bad as 1978 loss to the Yankees in the WS. Niedenfuer was never the same after that series.

Oldbear48

Tommy went to the well once too often. He had given up the game winner to Ozzie in game 5.

Evan Bladh

I interviewed Mike for a blog piece back when he was running that San Rafael Pacifics Independent League team.

He was doing everything from being the grounds crew, laundering uniforms, selling concessions, pitching BP,
managing the team and running the league administration. He was very humble. It was quite the opposite of what I remembered him being as a player.

He even admitted that he should have sucked it up and played hurt during the 80s and that the press and teammates were right in some instances about him being too soft and injury prone as a player.

i had an 8×10” photo of him celebrating the 88 NLCS with Shelby and Sax and he had never seen it. I brought it for his signature but he liked it so much, I just gave it to him and his wife was super excited about that.

Overall I found Marshall to be a real standup guy. He was super busy but at the time was marketing his independent league and also putting his kids thru school at Stanford. He loved the game. He even had Pedro Guerrero managing one of the other teams.

His recollections of Fernando, Sax, Lasorda, Gibson, the transition to the youth movement in the 80s, both the 81 and 88 championships seasons- it was all very interesting and vivid. Marshall loved being a Dodger and he had a lot of regrets about his shortened career. I was hoping that one day he’d find his way into the coaching ranks as he was truly paying his dues hat the independent league level.

Oldbear48

Nice to see you commenting here Evan, been a while.

Jim Gleason

Thank you for that fill in on Mike Marshall’s life after baseball and some of his candid thoughts.

Oldbear48

You are welcome. I try to get as much info when I do these player profiles as I can.

Duke Not Snider

Good stuff. I had zero knowledge of Marshall’s life after the majors.

Oldbear48

Did not realize this until now, Mike looked a little like Fred Gwynne. Herman Munster! Manfred announced he will step down in 29. That should elate some fans, he also said MLB would like to make some changes to free agency. One of those would be a cutoff date. Like mid-January or so.

Keith

The players union will never agree to a cut off date for free agency, the owners would use it like a sledge hammer, there would be very few FA offers until the day before the cut off, and then all offers would be fifty cents on the dollar. Manfred’s out of his mind if he thinks he can get that.

on the subject of FA, it looks like Boras is on the verge of hosing some of his clients, there are not many teams left that look like they can take on major contracts. This is like a game of musical chairs, somebody is going to be left without a chair, probably more than one somebody.

Oldbear48

Boras fired back. He said there is no way the MLBPA would ever agree to that.

Jeff Dominique

Dodgers have signed 36 year old LHRP Justin Wilson to a MiLB contract and a ST invite. Wilson joins Matt Gage (on 40 man), TJ McFarland, and Stephen Gonsalves trying to join Alex Vesia and Ryan Yarbrough as LHRP on the 26 man. Wilson has been good at times, although he has been out the last two years due to TJ surgery and lat strain issues.

Mark Timmons
Singing the Blue

I’m in your camp on Vargas, Mark. I fully expect him to succeed and have a good career. I just hope he’s allowed to do it in L.A.

If he has a strong year at OKC, I think they’ll hand him left field in 2025 (or even earlier if injuries dictate).

If/when he succeeds here, his personality will make him a fan favorite.

Mark Timmons

I have never touted Vargas as a superstar, but I do see him as a very good player who will be an occasional All-Star. You are right – If he succeeds, he will be a fan favorite!

Mark Timmons

I just got my Lindy’s 2024 Baseball Preview Magazine today. They pick the Dodgers and the Yankees in the World Series.

Last year, they nailed it: Yankees vs. Braves in the World Series.

Hodges54

I would love to see a Dodgers vs Yanks WS With the same results as the ’63 WS.

Mark Timmons

In “SCOUTS TAKE” they wrote this:

Obviously, you have to talk about Ohtani, Betts, Freeman, and Glasnow with them. When we get together, though, we talk about their draft and development machine. They took pretty much every pitcher in the system and gave them a plus slider last year like it was plastic surgery. Just a fierce 87 MPH slider and half of these guys can tough 100, and their fastballs all come in humming at the top of the zone, and they all have a feel for their changeup…

Last edited 1 month ago by Mark Timmons
Oldbear48

I prefer Athlon or Sporting News editions. I used to get Street and Smiths.

Mark Timmons

Athlon, SN, and S & S no longer publish one. I think Athlon is the last man standing.BA will have a preview issue before the start of the season. I used to get all of the preview magazines and compare the predictions. I don’t know why – they were almost always wrong! I don’t know why I read projections – they are seldom right – it must be a disease.

Oldbear48

I miss Baseball Digest and Who’s Who in Baseball.

Bluto

Odds and Ends out of spring training:

Per MLB.com:
Vanasco has been an under-the-radar addition to the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, but the right-hander has been a revelation so far this spring. President of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and manager Dave Roberts have both mentioned Vanasco as one of the most impressive pitchers so far in spring. It’s unclear how Vanasco fits into the puzzle, but don’t be surprised to see him at some point in 2024.

Per Jack Harris @ LATimes:
Dave Roberts said the Dodgers goal is to have Blake Treinen, JP Feyereisen and Daniel Hudson on the active roster to start the year

AND

Today Ohtani BP report: 26 swings, 13 homers — including five in a row during one round

Sounds like Treinen and Feyereisen might be a little further ahead than Hudson, who Roberts noted is still trying to improve his execution

Per the Dodgers Twitter Feed:


Last edited 1 month ago by Bluto
Mark Timmons

It seemed like Vanasco was going to get away, but then AF got him back. He may be this year’s Ryan Brasier, Brandon Morrow, or Joe Blanton.

Singing the Blue

Except those guys were all in their 30’s when they got here and Vanasco is only 25.

Mark Timmons

But… they were unexpected!

Jeff Dominique

Yep. I have talked Vanasco up all off season (once signed). He truly does have a chance to be special.

Mark Timmons

I would not be surprised if Vanasco made the team out of Spring Training… but there are so many…

Jeff Dominique

Oldbear48

One of the conditions the City of Oakland would like to see if they allow the A’s to continue to play while their new stadium in Las Vegas is being built, (It won’t be ready until 28), is that MLB will promise them an expansion franchise. MLB has long thought of expanding to 32 teams so there would be 16 in each league. Salt Lake City and Nashville have been mentioned as possible expansion cities. Bellinger is running out of options as far as signing a long-term deal. Some think he will sign a one-year contract since he turns 29 this season. But Boras and Belli both believe he has nothing to prove. Dodgers still have not listed all the uniform numbers for the players yet.

Mark Timmons

In Dan Diego, Xander Bogaerts is moving to 2B, with Kim taking over at SS. Kim is a much better SS than Bogaerts, and last year, for him to play SS was purely selfish. Little things like that fracture a team. The fact that he is now willing to move for the good of the team could mean that San Diego will be better this year! No – they will be better!

Last edited 1 month ago by Mark Timmons
Oldbear48

Now it is looking like the A’s want to play in Sacramento for the next few seasons. Zack Davies signs a minor league deal with the Nat’s. David Dahl also signed a minor league deal.

Mark Timmons

Of course, there is a lot of time to go, and barring injuries, it is starting to look like Blake Treinen, J.P. Feyereisen, Daniel, Hudson, Bazooka Graterol, Joe Kelly, Ryan Brasier, and Evan Phillips will composed the backend of the bullpen. That is potentially devastating! What about Vesia? They need a LH Reliever.

Mark Timmons

Which trade will be the biggest heist?

Mitch White for Nick Frasso (we have to wait in that one), or Matt Beaty for River Ryan?

Mark Timmons

The NBA All-Star Game is in Indy this year and the Downtown is packed with visitors. This was inevitable (taken in my backyard):
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Make mine Blue

Yuck, I hate the NBA and I hate that white stuff laying around in your backyard and on the roofs.

Mark Timmons

It will probably be gone by Tuesday. We do not get a lot of snow anymore!

Mark Timmons

Nice Dodger Prospect Table from True Blue LA:
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Mark Timmons

Merrifield to the Phillies.

Mark Timmons

I’m just in here today talking to myself.

Singing the Blue

I’m here too, watching you talk to yourself.

Oldbear48

I don’t worry about talking to myself, I worry when I start answering. And the answers are usually wrong.

Oldbear48

We got a heavy dose of snow last night. But it will all be gone by tomorrow. Presidents’ day so everything will be closed. Well, I mean the banks and no mail.

Oldbear48

David Dahl signed a minor league deal with them, and Grichuk signed with the D-Backs. But his is an MLB deal. Vogelbach signed with the Jays on a minor league deal.

Duke Not Snider

Mets should go after JDM.
They need help too.

Keith

Barring injuries every position on that team is set, looks like Merrifield is going to be a utility man. Getting close to the time he rides of into the sunset.

Duke Not Snider

Have to wait for both, but I really like the deal for Ryan.
Always nice to beat the Padres.

Keith

I agree with your list, that leaves one spot open, Vesia is a great pitcher, they are talking up Vanasco, but that last spot probably has to go to a long man. There are going to be a quite a few good bull pen arms hanging out in AAA

if you are in this bull pen, and sneeze or get a hangnail, you are going to end up on the IL so they can let some of guys to come up from Oklahoma City.

Dionysus

Hurt will be the shocking omission on opening day due to numbers.

Jeff Dominique

Come on. Shocking is a little over the top, don’t you think? He has exactly 2.0 of MLB IP, and while those were good innings, he is not nearly as proven as the names being discussed. He is not very good at all against LH hitting. He needs more seasoning down in MiLB to work on his secondary pitches against LH hitting. After $1.0BB+ spent, now is not the time to experiment with projectable but inexperienced relievers to come in in crucial situations. There is no question the opposing manager will have his LH hitters ready to face Hurt.

Badger

“They need a LH Reliever”

Every one of those guys mentioned can get anybody out.

Jeff Dominique

While I generally agree with the concept, you need that LH reliever to come in against the likes of Bryce Harper or Matt Olson who pummel RH pitching. Yes, they hit LHP also, but not at the level of RHP (especially Olson). Vesia has had one bad half year, and that was more of a result that he was never comfortable with the pitch clock. He always took a trip around the mound after an out, and not being able to, took him away from his routine, and pitchers need their routines. Come on, what would Al Hrabosky have done with pitch clock? It took Alex a half year to work things out. His S/BB ratio was 6.0 the 2nd half (2.33 first half). Vesia is not a bad pitcher. While he is outstanding against LH hitters, he is also good against RH hitters in his career. He is a little HR prone against RH hitters in his career, although many of those came last year. He may not be one of the 8 coming out of camp, but I would not be upset if he is.

Mark Timmons

I look for Vesia to have a bounceback year.

Jeff Dominique

I think he makes the 26 man and stays there. He will be counted on to face all of the tough LH hitters, and will get RH hitters out as well. I am going to have to do something on the architecture of an outstanding bullpen for 2024. As a unit, I really do not see how LAD is not the best. There is not a weak link and there is a ton of depth. Yes, Devin Williams or Tanner Scott would make them better, but they are certainly not needed. What do you prefer Van Gogh or Renoir?

Singing the Blue

Definitely Renoir, especially now that he’s developed that new pitch.

Bluto

Eric

 👍 

Oldbear48

Big news out of the Dodgers camp, Yamamoto’s interpreter took home the crown in the team’s wing-eating contest! Saw a video of Fergie in pinstripes pitching BP. He looked sharp and is wearing his familiar # 64. Margot, Betts, Freeman and Heyward will take live BP today against Yamamoto. Manny Ramirez is still being paid. He will make 33,628 dollars more that Ohtani will in salary this year.

Last edited 1 month ago by Oldbear48
Jeff Dominique

Fergie will be missed. I am still puzzled about the trade, even knowing that Fergie could not be optioned and would undoubredly leave next year anyway. My focus is on 2024, and Fergie is a better LHRP than Matt Gage even though Gage has an option. Cristian Zazueta? He is light years away with that upper-80’s fastball. Nope, still scratching my head on that one.

Bluto

From those who like the trade, they say the difference between Fergie and Gage over the season is negligible. This you get control in Gage and upside in Zazueta.

Duke Not Snider

Plus, the deal shouldn’t be viewed in isolation, as it also created room on the 40-man for Brazier, a righty who was tough on lefties.
Best case: Gage will get a Prior-ized and makes and impact, and Zazueta turns out to be is winning lottery ticket.
I like these one-for-two deals.
Dylan Floro had a nice 2021 for the Dodgers, including a huge playoff K against Arozarena. AF signed for 2022, and then dealt him to the Marlins for Vesia and prospect Kyle Hurt.
It’s easy to say now that the Dodgers “won” that trade, but Floro did a fine job for the Marlins, and last season was flipped to the Twins.

Bluto

Eric Longenhagen was on Effectively Wild to discuss the FanGraphs prospect list.

https://blogs.fangraphs.com/category/effectively-wild/

It’s an interesting discussion that includes such topics as:
The impact of fewer MiLB teams.
The value of having multiple DSL teams.
The change in evaluation with analytical teams.

Specifically to the Dodgers:
River Ryan gets a little soliloquy. Cartaya and Kyle Hurt more than a mention.

In term of prospects who didn’t make the list Longenhagen is excited about:
Dodgers system in general, behind Cubs, Red Sox (yay!) and Nationals in top tier. “The Dodgers always have guys”

Frasso, Stone, Edwardo Quintero (359/.472/.618, 5 HR, 42 RBI, 22 SB, 180 wRC+ as a 17yo in DSL) and Andy Pages also get called out by name in this “also” category.

PS: Not mentioned by Longenhagen, but getting buzz are IFs Alexander Albertus and Jeral Perez  

Last edited 1 month ago by Bluto
Singing the Blue

Jeral Perez, a name not familiar to me. Recent signing? What can you tell us about him?

Jeff Dominique

19 year old infielder from the DR. Played in the US as an 18 year old. He played 2B, 3B, and SS last year, mostly 2B. Played very well in the Arizona Complex League, and was promoted to Rancho at the end of the year. He does have a following in the prospect columns as someone to watch. He should start at Rancho and may get that promotion to Great Lakes by summer.

Singing the Blue

Thanks Jeff. Look forward to following him.

Bluto

Who cares about what he is actually about!

the story is the prospect whose name seems to come straight from JK Rowling! Alexander Albertus!

Jeff Dominique

After reading the article on Miguel Vargas, the best are those that rise up from failure. They all fail at some point. My primary question remains for Vargas for this year. He truly has not spot on the 26 man at this point. Of course things can change, but if not, how will he handle going back to OKC where he does not have anything to prove? Who knows, maybe he takes off in ST and the Dodgers have to find a way to move Margot. Regardless, if optioned to OKC, he has to have the right mental focus and show that he belongs as the everyday LF for 2025. I would still think that the Dodgers would prefer that he hit everyday rather than once in a while as J-Hey’s platoon partner.

Singing the Blue

I think Margot is on the roster as much for defense as for offense, so to sub in Vargas and trade Margot may not be what they want to do.

AF and the Gang will just have to do some real smooth talking to convince Vargas that one more year (of high quality production) at OKC will be what he’s going to have to put up with.

Of course, the odds that Teoscar, Outman and JHey all go for a full season without injury are pretty slim, so if Vargas does his work at AAA he’ll somehow make it to the MLB roster this year, even if it’s only temporary. This will be a real test of his attitude.

Mark Timmons

I just talked to a …. guy… (that’s all I can say). I said, “Give me three things you think will surprise me about the Dodgers”

He said:

Teoscar might hit 40 HR
Will Smith will have a breakout year
Watch the Vargas Kid
Gavin Stone is a keeper
That’s 4!

Last edited 1 month ago by Mark Timmons
Mark Timmons

If Margot stays on the team, I think he will get 150+ ABs in CF, but I am not sure he will be around. tHe same with Rojas. That depends upon Gavin.

Last edited 1 month ago by Mark Timmons
Duke Not Snider

A lot of reports have Margot as Heyward’s likely platoon partner, but I’d prefer to see Taylor out there. Taylor + Heyward could produce 30 HRs from RF.
Margot will play every OF position at one point or another. That’s pretty much what 4th outfielders are expected to do. One injury in the OF makes him a regular, and probably gets Vargas out of OKC. (Well, Heyward could also play against lefties… hmm.)
Margot could be a late-inning defensive replacement in LF. Teoscar has a good arm, but I’ve read that his routes can be adventurous.
Could Margot be traded? Sure. I’m still hoping for an impact move.
Rojas will back up SS, 2B and 3B, with Taylor also mixed in.
If Lux looks good, would Rojas be traded? Maybe, but he’s a great insurance.
It would be great to see Lux really break out, but the lineup is loaded. With Rojas, last year’s team was second to the Braves in offense. And this year’s lineup had Shohei instead of JDM, and Teoscar instead of Peralta. (Who will sign JDM?)
We could see 40 bombs from Mookie, 30 from Freddie, 50 from Shohei, 25 from Will (in about 130 games), 40 from Teoscar (says Mark’s “guy”), 35 from Max (as usual), 25 from Outman (let’s not get carried away), 30 from Heyward/Taylor and 15 from Lux.

Mark Timmons

All Vargas has to do are three things:

#1 Show Up!
#2 Step Up!
#3 Shut Up!

The rest will take care of itself.

Singing the Blue

Yamamoto had his first live BP session today and apparently his new teammates were very impressed.

After standing in against him, Mookie left the box and literally applauded him.
Freddie couldn’t say enough about him.
Apparently nobody he faced could touch him and he says he isn’t really tuned in yet. Says he’ll get better.

I’m the first to admit that he hasn’t proven a thing yet, but I’m thinking we may be looking at the second coming of Pedro Martinez. That’s how good I think he could be. And Tommy isn’t around any longer so he can’t trade him.

I realize it’s only ST, but ever since I saw his first presser, I’ve decided he’s going to be my favorite Dodger pitcher. His stuff, combined with his training, combined with his competitiveness and general killer instinct could lead to some spectacular results. I’m not look at this as glass half full. I’m look at this as glass overflowing. Definitely setting myself up for some huge disappointment but I’m willing to take that chance.

Eric

“I’m the first to admit that he hasn’t proven a thing yet, but I’m thinking we may be looking at the second coming of Pedro Martinez. That’s how good I think he could be.”

 👍 

Mark Timmons

A lot of people think Glasnow will be the Ace. Buehler wants the Ace job Back. AF evidently thinks Yamamoto can be an Ace. Bobby Miller is an Ace in Waiting. I have never lost a hand with 4 aces.

Jeff Dominique

Questions galore. But the potential to rival and exceed the 1971 Baltimore Orioles 4-man rotation. Cuellar, Dobson, Palmer McNally.

I like Glasnow, but the more I see Yamamoto, he is more than something special.  Of course it could be that Mookie and Freddie are in their October mode. 😂

Duke Not Snider

A few years back, I counted four aces: Kershaw, Buhler, Bauer and Urias….
Didn’t quite work out.

Mark Timmons

It’s funny how things work out!

Make mine Blue

I hear that, results on paper mean nothing, results on the field are the only results that count. However, you got to like our chances going into the season. It seems that only injuries or Roberts stand in our way at this point in time.

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