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Now That’s More Like What We Were Expecting

This was about as complete of a game as the team has had all year.  There was offense, clutch offense, pitching, and defense.

A week ago, Jake Irvin pitched 6.0 shutout innings on four hits for the only shutout of the Dodgers thus far in 2024.  This game, Irvin lasted 4.2 innings, surrendered 6 runs on 12 hits and 1 BB.  After Derek Law and Dylan Floro kept the LAD bats quite, Tanner Rainey and Matt Barnes pitched the final 2.0 innings allowing 5 runs, on 7 hits and 2 BB.

After Ohtani obliterated the pitch from Matt Barnes in game one for a 450 foot HR on 118.7 MPH, all he could do against Barnes in this one was a 101.9 MPH 386 foot opposite field double off the wall.  Hit the weights.

This was the second start by Landon Knack in MLB and against the Nats.  In his first start,  Knack was money after the first 5 batters.  In this one, Knack would get the first two batters out in the inning, and then sort of lose it.  In the first, after two quick outs, he gave up two singles, but Joey Gallo on a K to get out of the inning.

With a 3-0 lead in the second inning, Knack got two outs on 5 pitches, but then gave up a 3-2 HR to Nick Senzel.  That seemed to unnerve him a bit, and he seemed to lose concentration and his command.  He walked 3 and hit a batter to force in the 2nd run.  He got the third out in the inning, and left leading 3-2.

Like in his debut, after a little trouble, Knack settled down to be unhittable.  He retired the side in order in the 3rd – 6th inning.  That was 13 in a row retired by Knack.

For the night, Knack went 6.0 innings giving up 2 runs on 3 hits, 3 BB, and 1 HBP.  He threw 94 pitches in those 6.0 innings.  That was 45 pitches in his final 4 innings.


In 9 of his 2024 IP he was near perfect.  Those other 2???

The bullpen was just as automatic.  Ryan Brasier was his 2023 best as he retired the side in order in the 7th on 10 pitches.  Ryan Yarbrough completed the final two innings in order on 22 pitches.  That was the last 22 Washington Nationals retired in order.

The pitching was stellar – Check.

The Dodgers put together 20 hits, most in 2024.  There were 8 doubles and 1 HR.  The HR was by Andy Pages, his 2nd in the last three games.  Andy also had a double and single for a 3-5 night.


Will Smith and Mookie Betts both had 4 hit nights each with their 7th double.  Shohei had three doubles, and now has 14 on the season.  Atlanta’s Orlando Arcia is next with 9.

Teoscar Hernández and Max Muncy also had doubles.

The Dodgers also had clutch hits.  They were 7-15 WRISP.  For the last three games, the Dodgers are 15-36 for a .417 clip.  Gavin Lux had a critical two out two run single.  Will Smith, Freddie Freeman (2), Ohtani all had 2-out run scoring hits.  The bottom two in the order were 5-10 with 4 runs and 3 RBI.


Hits – Check.

Clutch Hits – Check.

The Dodgers defense was stellar.  There were no errors.  There were no saving plays at 1B by Freddie.  And Gavin Lux made multiple plays including an outstanding play on a hard hit ball heading into RF.  Max made a good play.  While nothing super difficult, James Outman ran back on a couple of long hits to CF to make outs look easy.

Defense – Check.

They will not all be this easy or complete, but remember this one when the Dodgers hit another tough stretch (and there will be those).

After Walker Buehler’s outing in Albuquerque, Landon Knack has shown that he deserves another start, and Buehler can continue to try to build upon rehab assignments.

The Dodgers have won a series after dropping three in a row.  On Thursday, they go for the sweep with Yoshinobu Yamamoto facing off against LHSP MacKenzie Gore.

The Padres beat Colorado, while Arizona and San Francisco lost to St. Louis and NYM respectively.






OKC Baseball Club 11 – Albuquerque Isotopes (Colorado) 9

 This was a game that the Dodgers were watching.  Walker Buehler was making another rehab start. The Dodgers were hoping that Buehler could get up and down 5 times.  He got through 4.0 innings and 1 batter (he walked).  He was pulled after 86 pitches (54 strikes).  This was not altogether unexpected as Albuquerque is such a huge launching pad.

For the game, Buehler  – 4.0 IP, 5 runs (3 earned), 7 hits, 2 BB, 5 K, 2 HR (for 3 runs).





Andre Lipcius hit his 6th HR in the 2nd to open the scoring.  Drew Avans opened the 3rd with his 1st HR of the season.  After 2 walks, a DP, Ryan Ward slugged a 2-run HR (6).  A single and pair of doubles by Hunter Feduccia and Kody Hoese plated two more OKC runs.

Jesse Hahn lost his control in the 5th.  He allowed the inherited runner left by Buehler to score, and then 4 on his own.  He allowed 2 hits and 3 BB.  The big hit was a three run double.  Braydon Fisher relieved Hahn and got the final out.  As he left in the fifth, the Isotopes had a 9-6 lead.

In the 6th, Jonathan Araúz opened with a single that was followed by a BB to Drew Avans and Miguel Vargas.  Trey Sweeney singled home Araúz, and Kevin Padlo doubled home Avans and Vargas to tie the score.

In the 7th, Jonathan Araúz opened with a double (7), was WP to third,  Drew Avans reached on E-3 and stole 2B.  Miguel Vargas doubled (7) home the winning runs.

Braydon Fisher, Michael Petersen, John Rooney, and Rickt Vanasco shut down the Isotopes with no runs, 2 hits, 2 BB, and 3 K in 4.1 IP.

OKC had 10 XBH in their 16 total.

  • Drew Avans – 2-5, 1 BB, 3 runs, 1 RBI, HR (1)
  • Miguel Vargas – 2-3, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 2 runs, 2 RBI, double (7), triple (1)
  • Trey Sweeney – 1-3, 3 BB, 1 RBI,
  • Kevin Padlo – 1-5, 1 BB, 2 RBI, double (7)
  • Ryan Ward – 1-6, 1 run, 2 RBI, HR (6)
  • Andre Lipcius – 3-6, 2 runs, 1 RBI, HR (6)
  • Hunter Feduccia – 2-5, 1 BB, 1 run, 1 RBI, double (5)
  • Kody Hoese – 2-5, 1 RBI, 2 doubles (3)
  • Jonathan Araúz – 2-5, 1 BB, 2 runs, double (7)


Box Score



Tulsa Drillers 6 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals (KC) 3

The Drillers used 10 hits and 4 BB to push across 6 runs in an afternoon game.

Ben Casparius drew the start and gave up a solo HR in the 2nd Inning to give the Naturals a 1-0 lead.  In the bottom of the 2nd, Griffin Lockwood-Powell had a one out single and scored on a Yeiner Fernandez double.

The Drillers scored a pair in the 3rd after the first two were retired.  Austin Gauthier walked and moved to 3rd on a Taylor Young single.  Young stole 2nd, and both scored on a José Ramos single.

The lead was short-lived as Casparius surrendered his 2nd HR of the day to Dillan Shrum, this one a 2-run shot.

The Drillers got a pair of solo HRs in the 5th; Austin Gauthier (3) and Ramos (5).  The 6th and final run was due to a Gauthier double (3), ground ball fielders choice, and wild pitch.

Casparius completed 6.0 innings allowing only the three runs.  Ronan Kopp made his 2024 debut and pitched a scoreless 1.0 inning.  He did give up a walk, but that was it.  He also had a K.  Jack Dreyer continued his excellent start with another perfect inning with a K.  Jack Little finished of the game with a perfect 9th and his first save.

  • Austin Gauthier – 3-3, 1 BB, 3 runs, 1 RBI, double (3), HR (3)
  • José Ramos – 2-4, 1 run, 3 RBI, HR (5)
  • Yeiner Fernandez – 2-3, 1 BB, double (4)



Box Score



Great Lakes Loons 11 – Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres) 1 – Game 1 – 7 Innings

Nick Biddison had three of the 8 hits including a double and triple to pace an 11 run performance for the Loons.

Jerming Rosario started his third game and again completed only 3.0 innings.  He gave up 2 hits and 1 BB with 4 Ks.  He only threw 47 pitches (28 strikes).  Chris Campos followed with his 2nd consecutive 3.0 scoreless IP. He issued one walk, no hits, and 5 Ks.  Madison Jeffrey followed and allowed the lone run on 2 BB and a double.   He had 2 K.

The Loons scored all of their runs in 2 innings.  4 in the 3rd, and 7 in the 4th.  In the 3rd. Nick Biddison and Dylan Campbell both doubled for the first run.  With one out, Alex Freeland singled home Campbell.  Chris Newell followed with a 2-run HR and a 4-0 lead.

In the 4th, Biddison led off with a single and moved to 3rd on a fielder’s choice throwing E-5.  Campbell moved up on a passed ball.  Kyle Nevin singled to score Biddison.  Campbell to 3rd and Nevin to 2nd on the throw.  Both runners score on wild pitches.  Alex Freeland walked and with one out, Noah Miller walked.  After the 2nd out, Sam Mongelli and Luis Rodriguez both walked forcing in a run.  Nick Biddison then cleared the bases with a triple (1).

  • Nick Biddison – 3-4, 2 runs, 3 RBI, double (3), triple (1)
  • Alex Freeland – 2-3, 1 BB, 2 runs, 1 RBI
  • Chris Newell – 1-4, 1 run, 2 RBI, HR (3)
  • Dylan Campbell – 1-5, 2 runs, 1 RBI, double (2)


Box Score



Great Lakes Loons 5Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres) 1 – Game 2 – 7 Innings

 Jackson Ferris pitched his best game in the LAD organization.  He threw 5.0 innings allowing the one run on 3 hits, 1 BB, and 5 K.  Christian Suarez followed up the excellent pitching by Jackson Ferris and game 1 pitching, with 2.0 perfect innings and 4 Ks.



In the 2nd inning GL got on the board with a Yunior Garcia 2-run HR (3).  It was a lead the Loons would not relinquish.

Chris Newell hit a solo HR (4) in the 6th for an insurance run.  In the 7th, Nelson Quiroz singled and Jake Vogel walked.  Alex Freeland doubled to score both runners.  Four of the five Loon hits were for XBH.

  • Alex Freeland – 1-3, 1 BB, 2 RBI, double (5)
  • Chris Newell – 1-2, 2 BB, 2 runs, 1 RBI, HR (4)
  • Yunior Garcia – 1-3, 1 run, 2 RBI, HR (3)
  • Nick Biddison – 1-2, 1 BB, double (4)


Box Score



Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 10 – Lake Elsinore Storm (Padres) 8

The Quakes won their 6th straight.  They jumped out to 7-1 and 10-3 leads and had to hold on after Lake Elsinore scored 5 in the final 2 innings.

As I am writing this, and I did not watch this game, I do not know the reason that Kendall George did not play, and that Josue De Paula came out after 1 PA.

The Quakes had only 7 hits but 10 walks.  They scored in 5 straight innings, beginning in the 3rd.

Gabe Emmett started and completed 4.0 innings allowing 1 unearned run on 4 hits, 2 BB, and 6 K.  Joseilyn Gonzalez pitched the next 2.1 innings allowing 2 runs (1 earned).  He gave up a hit and BB.

The next three Quakes pitchers did not fare well at all allowing those 5 runs.  Reynaldo Yean pitched to one batter to get the final out and the save.

The Quakes got a pair of HRs from Jeral Perez and Jake Gelof.  Perez was the only Quake with 2 hits.  Perez had 3 RBIs and catcher Carlos Rojas had 2.


Box Score





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Fun game to watch once they started getting men on base. Pages keeps this up and the Dodgers are going to have some hard decisions to make once Heyward is activated. I could see Outman going down, or CT-3 getting released or DFAd.


It doesn’t look like Heyward is coming back soon though. Back pain is unpredictable, it coukd get better fast ir linger. Either way he would still need some rehab at bats. Pages looks ready to take over!


It won’t be until mid-June maybe or even around the first of July. Pages is gaining confidence. But it will be a day-to-day struggle to adjust to MLB pitching.


I have around 23 million reasons why KT3 will not be DFA. Outman needs to start hitting or he may be back in OKC when Heyward comes back.


Jeff–What do you think of Knack’s stuff?


Landon Knack looked real good. It was 2nd time I saw him pitch and he sure raised my eyebrows.

Nice to see Andy Pages start to see some results. He could sure be a much needed bat at the bottom of the order if he has continued success.

HPU – Larry Vanover has a strike zone about as high and wide as I have seen. Curious to see if Phil Jones chimes in as he knows the umps league quite well.

Hope Yamomoto throws well tonight. Seems like he is still adjusting to new league and has electric stuff so I would think he comes around at some point.

Nats are a scrappy team. CJ Abrams is a rising star and there 2b has a hell of a glove.


Afternoon game starts at 1:05 PST. They fly to Toronto immediately after the game.

Phil Jones

Hey Zeke, my book on Larry Vancouver is – “brutal accuracy. Pinches south. Hates low strikes. Inconsistent. Flips coins on borderline pitches. Pitcher friendly in both rivers and north.”
Yesterday he was true to this, calling a number of actual balls, strikes up and off both corners.


Though Lux got two hits, one was another right side 5 bounce seeing eye grounder. The other, to left, was impressive. Outman appears to be somewhat unlucky. He will come around. Pages OPS’n over .900. Can he keep that up? For a while maybe. I can see him as a .900 hitter later in his career. But as a rookie? .800 would be a success.

Looking at Buehler’s spray chart suggests to me he needs to find the lower outside corner to right handed hitters. Also get the four seamer out of the center. High and tight low and away. He’s not ready yet.

Knack sure looks like he’s working hard. Good outing though. Stuff is good, command needs work. So does his mid section.

This is what this team can look like when 8 cylinders are working. Score and score more.

1 o’clock game. I’ll be there. Well, I’ll be here actually, glued to high def baseball. YoYama! Shut ‘em out.


I thought Stone was pinched in his last outing and apparently Knack wasn’t yesterday.


It doesn’t seem like Lux has not hit a line drive all year. Weak bloopers that drop in and ground balls that occasionally sneaks through the infield. Very disappointing. Maybe he still doesn’t trust his knee.

Loving Pages so far. Plus fielder and arm. If he can hit with contact he certainly has the swing to be successful. A solid MLB player. Something I thought they had with Vargas. If Pages turns out to be an everyday player, Heyward’s spot becomes a bench player. Injuries happen.


Until he can square up a pulled ball, Lux going the other way like he did can keep him in the lineup. The way he did that made it look like he knew what he was doing.

I think Pages is a guy who knows what he wants and is going to get it. He’s doing a lot of things right. I did ask if he might have a hole up and in, still think he might, but he’s been successful hitting mistakes. I like him.

Anybody seen Chris Taylor?


I don’t believe all hitters have holes, though yes, today’s hitters have trouble with high fastballs. Yesteryear’s hitters didn’t.

Chris Taylor has mad 3 outs in 2 at bats. Not a good start for him.


With the news that Brusdar Graterol’s throwing program has been stopped, I would think they will be looking at a back of the BP late inning pitcher soon. Kelly, Brasier, and Grove all have ERAs in the mid 5’s.

Sam Oyed

Grove has been pitching better as of late. With Brasier, the Dodgers will give him time to see which pitcher he is, the one the Red Sox let go or the one the Dodgers had late last year. As for Kelly, he is what he is.

How good is Ramirez? Any thoughts? Other than that I don’t see the Dodgers doing much till June/July. Interestingly, May could be back by then. Will he be used in relief? If so, how good will that work out? As you say, the pen needs work.


Sam, Brasier is on a two-year contract, he has a long leash. Grove has pitched better, and Kelly has his moments. Ramirez has spent parts of five seasons in the bigs. He is pitching better right now than he has in his prior years in the majors. His K rate is a little over 2-1. He doesn’t have a great career WHIP and his career ERA is 3.91. I do not look for May until after the deadline. He is throwing but is still some time away from a rehab assignment, which he will obviously need before he is activated. Buehler should be activated soon. Striker might not be the same type of pitcher he was, but I believe he is smart enough to change his tactics. 95 plus is still a good fastball speed. CK has been pitching for years with a heater that maxes out at about 93. The key is the differential between your fastball and your off-speed stuff. Buehler was throwing a knuckle-curve last night. One reliever to keep an eye on is John Rooney at OKC.

Last edited 22 days ago by Oldbear48

Is Rooney the next guy up?


If Scott is available there will be competition for him, but yeah, I think he would be the guy. But until a trade I would want the best pitcher to be the next up.


A lot has changed stat wise for several players after the first week.

Phil Jones

Knack certainly righted the ship after that shaky 2nd inning. Senzel’s HR seemed to rattle him into 3 walks and a HBP. It seemed to chase him out of the strike zone. But good for Doc leaving him in and good on the kid getting self-correcting on the fly and nicely got through 6 on 94 pitches.  Nice to see the kid continue to compete through adversity and give us the innings we needed.
20 hits to 3. Now that’s an ass whuppin.
It looks to me like MiggyRo has had an influence on Lux’s infield mechanics. While Lux doesn’t possess Miggy’s ability to deflect the baseball instantly into his throwing hand, he does now snatch the ball out quicker while separating his hands quicker. It’s a different action but the same goal; Get it out, get up, and get it in the air. He doesn’t cradle the ball to his chest which frees up his arms and brain to execute better throws. I like the action.
I haven’t watched many games from Nats Park. But it seems to play big. While the dimensions aren’t gaudy, well hit balls seem to die in the outfield. Must be the humidity.
Awesome to see Pages have a day. I listened to the Nationals broadcast team last night and they weren’t very good. I did learn that Pages was in big league ST at age 19. In 6 pro years, that’s 4 spring trainings at age 23. It seems the Dodgers knew they had something early. 


I noticed that too. He’s looking more confident there. I still don’t believe Mookie stays at short into the future. I still see him at second. If Lux stays at second, and ends up being extended, what happens to Mookie?

Phil Jones

Badger, I heard Mookie can play some rightfield.


Yep, it was my hope he would stay there but apparently he wants to play in the dirt.


He stays at short or swaps positions with Lux. Maybe third?

Singing the Blue

I’d like to see Andrew immediately sign MiggyRo to a coaching contract to start the day after he retires as an active player (that probably isn’t legal). Seems like he’s already filling that role with all the infielders. He has coach/manager written all over him. I hope they don’t let him get away.


My legal mind can’t figure out why that couldn’t happen with Rojas. Maybe that’s because I don’t have a legal mind.


Well Jeff, do you think Caleb goes #1 to the Bears?????


I just read Rams are trying to move into the Top 10. For who?

Fred Vogel

Hopefully a Fearsome Foursome clone.


Murphy maybe? Nabers? Alt?


I see Will Smith is getting the day off against a left hander. Seems to me they could give him his rest days against righties.


Found this on Twitter and think it’s very interesting.

The amount of movement Dodgers development has wrung out of Knack’s arsenal.

Four-Seamer (42 thrown): averaged 92.6mph, WITH 19.6″(!!) Induced Vertical Break (IVB) & 8.7″ Horizontal Break (ArmSide)
Change (10): 83.8 mph, 13.3″ IVB, 10.5″ horziontal AS
Curve (10): 78.3, -16.7″, 7.8 GloveSide
SL (31): 84.6, 3″, 5″ GS

You may ask, as I did, what is IVB?
Well, it is a measure of how well the ball avoids the effects of gravity in a pitch. The higher it is the more a hitter thinks a pitch is rising, ergo, the higher the IVB theoretically the higher the whiffs up in the zone and called strikes down.

More here ($$$$)

From what I’ve read, only (9) nine pitchers in all of baseball averaged higher than 19.6” of IVB last season. Knack’s heater has seriously good carry!

Last edited 22 days ago by Bluto

Let’s hope he has that!


I think I remember Denny McLain’s, the last 30 game winner, fastball was supposed to rise a lot.


I sat behind home plate and watched Koufax fastballs rise. Never seen anything like it in baseball, but then I haven’t had a seat behind home plate since then.


What did it cost then? Probably $500 bucks or more now days.


Cost? Don’t know. My grandpa, head bartender at the Hotel Bel-Air, got great tickets all the time. I think those seats today, if you can get them, are over $1,000.




19.6” vertical? No way. That sounds like a world class fastpitch rise ball.


Someone explain to me why they keep sending Chris Taylor up there? 1st and 2nd, hits into double play. 1st and second, strikes out. Send the pitcher up to hit as a better alternative.


Every at bat he’s due.

How’s that?


More like Due Due


Duely noted. 0 for 4 today. 2 for 43 with the lowest OPS I think I’ve ever seen, .239. How long do they wait for this guy? I typically say 100 at bats will give an indication what a hitter is capable of but will the team wait that long?


Up to now, Ohtani has struck out twice and stranded 3 himself.

But yes, we all know Taylor’s failures are way beyond frustrating now.


I’ll give you around 23 million reasons.


Yay!! Dodgers Win!!


Yamamoto looked good. Dodgers Team WRISP 1for 10. Back to that again.


Not good. But the one hit was Freddie. When he gets going, we will really be dangerous.

Last edited 22 days ago by OhioDodger

Hello from the NFL Draft in Detroit! Bears take Caleb AND Rome Odunze! We may actually have a non-embarrassing offense for once!

Yamamoto looked great today (I was watching on my phone here at the draft). Great sweep after looking so poor in the last homestand.

Duke Not Snider

And that’s more like we were expecting from Yamamoto too….
Great to have strong pitching performances back-to-back, even if the Nationals don’t resemble the ’27 Yankees. Or ’24 Braves.
I wonder how many pitchers could have snagged that 104-mph comebacker to the face like Yoshi did. Great survival instincts. (Statcast should come out with a report on hardest-hit comebackers. I hope Shohei never lines one a pitcher’s head.)
It was reported that if we take away his horrible debut in Seoul, Yoshi now has a 2.00 ERA….
Against a lefty, Roberts decided to sit Lux, Max and Outman, with Rojas, Kike and Taylor as replacements. Kike got two hits, and Miggy got one.
As for CT3, another oh-for-4. Two Ks and he grounded into a double play. Ugh. He lowered his BA to .043, with a .192 on-base percentage. His K rate is 40%, while Outman’s is at 28%.
Roberts is of course giving Taylor a chance to get on track, but he’s the biggest hole in the offense by a wide margin. Outman’s poor numbers partly reflect bad luck, as his BABIP is .229. I don’t see how a stint in OKC will make Outman luckier.
Unless Taylor makes a fairly dramatic comeback, perhaps AF could eat much of his salary and deal him for a prospect.

The Dodgers have played 27 games, or one-sixth of 162.
Fun projections:
Mookie on pace for 162 runs, 240 hits and 36 stolen bases. Hope he keeps the running game going!
Shohei on pace for 234 hits, 84 doubles and 30 steals.

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