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R I S P – The Dodgers Blue Kryptonite

Runners in scoring position. All teams have them, the more you get them in, the better chance you have of winning.

The Dodgers this season have been really amazing at scoring with 2 outs. I think they have scored more than 300 runs with 2 outs. But they have had stretches where they just cannot get a run home with men in scoring position.

One of the most frustrating things for fans to watch is a team loading the bases with no outs, or less than two outs, and then watching the team leave them loaded, or score only one.

That happened Saturday night when they loaded the bases in the first inning. They scored one when Smith hit into a DP. That right there cost them the game. Had they scored at least 2 of those runners, they would have won the game in regulation.

They wasted a fine effort by Sheehan and Yarbrough. They had plenty of chances after that but went 1-10 with RISP.

But this is not a new problem. It has plagued Dodger teams over the last several seasons. It is puzzling because the Dodgers usually have a pretty decent hitter coming up in those situations.

Like Jeff mentioned in a prior post, they need to change their approach. LA has 11 grand slams this season. That ties the team record. Maybe that creeps into the hitters mentality when the bags are juiced. Hey, I get a granny here, we win this game.

Thus it becomes the hitter’s kryptonite. Instead of just trying to hit the ball hard somewhere, they try to launch. I saw Chris Taylor doing that a couple of times this weekend.

Smith usually does shorten up his swing with 2 strikes, but he also does have a tendency to swing harder with men on base instead of just letting the ball come to him in the last couple of weeks.

Now this season, the Dodgers OPS with RISP is .838. Second to Atlanta. They usually do a decent job this season. And since this is one of the better offensive teams in Dodger history, overall, they have done pretty well.

I think one thing has factored into the lull they face now and then, that is JD Martinez not being in the lineup.

Let’s face it, when healthy, JD is an RBI machine. He has played in 92 games and driven in 75 runs. When he is in the four hole behind the top three, pitchers have to be very careful.

Also, this season, he owns Atlanta. He is hitting .500 against Braves pitchers with 3 homers in three games. If they meet in the playoffs, JD is going to be a huge piece of the puzzle. In his career, he has 9 homers against the Braves.

Not much time to change a whole lot this year, so we will have to wait and see if they change some hitters’ approaches next season. Many teams are starting to revert back to using more contact hitting styles and less of the new philosophy.

Deja Vu all over again. Baseball is reverting back to some of its old ways. I can’t wait!

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Oldbear48

We should hear something about the Urias situation today. Back to business for the MLB office in New York. My guess is admin leave asap.

Dionysus

We forget they are human beings and some human beings are fuck-ups.

SandyIsTheGreatest

The Dodgers can survive without him. It’s a shame we didn’t proactively move him at the deadline if we knew something of his character. This behavior is so far out of bounds they need to be careful they don’t scrub all of 2020 off in the scraping.

Early “winners” in this turn of events are Miller & Pepiot, as Miller now emphatically becomes a core part of whatever we hope to accomplish in the playoffs; and Pepiot just won himself a postseason start, especially if Yarbrough can still attached to him as a piggyback option.

We will still need to score runs early and put pressure throughout the game; we still need a solid core of bullpen arms that we can put out there in tough spots and expect good results. And, we still need clean aggressive baseball played by every guy on the field.

It’s hard to miss someone who hasn’t been playing that well for us, but he was a top arm to throw out there and now it’s Kershaw/Miller/Lynn for the win.

Fatal to the guy’s career with us, but not for our chances.

Badger

Been giving this some thought.

Im not sure changing the approach at this point will work with this group. Make contact with two strikes, with these guys, might bean approach that ends up with a rollover double play. I don’t know that but it sure seems possible to me.

I think I prefer this approach: We’ve worked all year to be as good as we are. It’s the 4th quarter, do what we do and do it better than those guys. Let’s finish what we started.

Excellent point about JD. Will we get him back in time?

My gut tells me this – we aren’t as good as Atlanta, but we can beat ‘em.

Bumsrap

For me it’s not so much trying to make more contact wrisp as it is hitting the ball where it is pitched all the time. Muncy briefly went with the pitch for about a week and his average rose above .200 and then he went back to trying to hit the ball as hard as he could, trying to pull low and away pitches and doing so with a big swing or saying it another way, trying to hit the ball in such a way that he would hurt himself.

The Dodgers do take their walks but even with the third baseman shifted to the second base side of the left side and the shortstop standing basically behind second base, almost, the lefty hitters didn’t bunt or punch the ball down the third base line. Dodger hitters kept hitting the ball where Atlanta’s defense was standing.

Regarding Urias, I think a person who has difficulty controlling their frustration and who is feeling intense pressure can do something they would not normally do. Urias was only months away from a $200MM contract and wasn’t having the year a free agent needs to have.

Boras has his work cut out for him and he already had a less than great relationship with the Dodgers and now they are probably out of the bidding for Urias.

I had already moved on from Urias long ago. Lynn will have to pitch great from here on out for me to have any desire for him to be part of the Dodger payroll. I am high on Miller, Pepiot, Sheehan, and Stone.

Badger

I try picturing Muncy attempting to bunt and I get nothing. I don’t think he’s ever done it. He’s paid to slug, so slug is what he is going to do. I agree he has had some success going the other way, but it appears to me he is 1. hitting with two strikes nearly every at bat and 2. he’s susceptible to breaking balls down and in and fastballs up and away. If mistakes are made on those two pitches he’s more likely to hit them. Bunt? No. And taking a tubed fastball for strike one still drives us all nuts, but, that’s often him.

We all get frustrated. But hitting anyone out of frustration is not the answer. Hitting a woman is inexcusable.

Our pitching could be great. But, in the playoff experience is invaluable.

Bumsrap

I don’t think Muncy should bunt either. Depending on where the defense is positioned, I think one of Peralta, Heyward, or Outman should push a bunt down the third base line once a game all told between them.

I hope Urias also believes hitting a woman is inexcusable as well but knowing that and stopping from doing it are two different things. Are there exceptions?

Badger

Exceptions? Maybe. Stand your ground laws could present a defense.

SandyIsTheGreatest

joke or serious

Bluto

Definite joke.

SandyIsTheGreatest

 😂 

Badger

Meant to be.

But, let’s face it, there is no bottom to the depth lawyers will dive. I’ve witnessed it up close and personal.

“If you believe your life is in immediate danger, you can fight the attacker off. The key to this defense, however, is being able to provide evidence of the imminent threat to prove that your actions were justified. This is not easy to do when facing charges of domestic violence.”

Not easy. But impossible?

Singing the Blue

Sometimes I agree with you, Fred…… and this is one of them.

Last edited 9 months ago by Singing the Blue
Bumsrap

And, I said a lot of things.

Last edited 9 months ago by Bumsrap
Singing the Blue

Don’t tempt me. I’m sure I could find one or two points to dispute, but I’m feeling mellow today.

Badger

As for Urias, it won’t matter what the lawyers are able to do for him. It’s possible no legal decision will be made until this season is over, but, like Bauer, who still hasn’t been convicted of anything, Julio Urias is finished as a Dodger.

Jeff Dominique

Every couple of weeks, Baseball Prospectus encapsulates a Who’s Hot and Who’s Not story into a series entitled: Heat Wave. They select two Hot and two Not Hot prospects from each affiliated level. This week, the Dodgers got one mention:

Low-A

Hot

Thayron Liranzo, C, Los Angeles Dodgers (Low-A Rancho Cucamonga): .343 (12-35), 6 R, 5 2B, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 7 BB, 11 K. Season Stats (Low-A): .274/.396/.557, 22 HR, 2 SB.
Signed for just $30,000 in 2022 and with two unremarkable professional seasons under his belt, Liranzo was not on the prospect radar, overshadowed by organization mates, Diego Cartaya and Dalton Rushing. However, as they struggled at their respective levels, Liranzo flourished, setting career bests in most offensive categories. There’s some swing-and-miss to his game and he might be best served ditching the idea of being a switch hitter, but there’s no doubt the power is real. He’s also shown vast improvements behind the dish, with the durability and quickness to stick at the position long term. 

Thayron is 20 (baseball age 19). He is improving defensively as a catcher. We have no idea if he will be a front line catcher until we see what he can do when he reaches AA; hopefully sometime next season.

A former Dodger prospect got a Not So Hot selection:

Not

Jacob Amaya, SS, Miami Marlins (Triple-A Jacksonville): .167 (5-30), 4 R, 2B, 5 BB, 7 K, 2 SB.

For the season – .253/.334/.401/.735 – 11 HR, 25 doubles, 2 triples, 6 SB, 1 CS, 52BB 93K.

Badger

I got a question for you money guys in here.

I don’t understand the JockTax.

Here’s an example of how the jock tax would be calculated for a player in the MLB:

The first step is to calculate the portion of total income that will be taxable in each state. Divide the number of games played in a particular state or city by the total number of games played (including the regular season as well as pre-and post-seasons). 
Then, multiply against the total amount the athlete was compensated for the year. That amount is then taxed according to each state’s income tax rates.

For example, let’s take an athlete with the following stats and determine the amount of Pittsburgh jock taxes owed:

Total games played at PNC Park = 5
Total games played pre- through postseason = 105
Total salary for the season = $5 million

  • 5 games divided by 105 = 4.76%
  • 4.76% of $5 million = $238,000
  • 3% of $238,000 = $7,134 in taxes owed

Seems simple enough, but I know through experience seldom is anything as simple at it seems.

My question is this, can deferred money be sent to a residence in a non income tax state?

Bumsrap

Thanks Badger, that’s going to keep me awake all night thinking about it.

Bluto

I think its different where it is earned vs. Paid.

Jeff Dominique

I am a CPA/finance guy, but not a tax guy. There is a difference. I have never done anyone’s tax return other than mine, and when it got a little complicated, I farmed it out to our tax CPA. I have enough tax knowledge to be dangerous with advice.

My son’s agent always have a tax CPA on staff to do the players returns.

You said: Divide the number of games played in a particular state or city by the total number of games played (including the regular season as well as pre-and post-seasons).

I am not sure that ST games and post season games do count. Players do not get paid for ST or post season games. Their contract runs from Game 1 to Game 162.

Bonuses are taxed in the state of residency.

Fairly certain but not totally 100% certain, deferred compensation is also taxed in state of residency. They cannot be associated with any state other than player residency.

As you correctly noted, there are some cities that have an income tax, principally on the east coast.

So when you get back to the softball circuit and travel the country, you will need to hire a tax CPA to navigate the state returns.

Dionysus

Only a sucker does his own taxes.

Badger

6 earned in 8. 6.75 ERA.

Well, Miami has more to play for than the Dodgers do. We aren’t catching Atlanta so the goal, I guess, is to make sure we don’t lose another pitcher.

Slugging like we did for a while there isn’t sustainable over 3 months. It should come back for periods over the next 2 months though. Gotta score 7 might be a theme for several games going forward.

Bluto

If Kershaw’s shoulder doesnt improve and Urias is as done as most believe, its a dire picture.

But the team is fun to watch!

Singing the Blue

And it will continue to be fun to watch until we’re eliminated in the first round of the playoffs.

Maybe the young guns will rise to the occasion and we’ll surprise everyone (including ourselves and the front office).

Remember everyone, this is a reset year, and boy are we going to reset, especially in the pitching department.

Dionysus

Boo

Bumsrap

I expect the young guns to succeed and therefore won’t be surprised.

Jeff

No worries here. Change is the true status quo that makes or breaks teams. The Dodgers are usually armed with up and comers, the young guns. Now they will benefit from playing time to determine who gets the call up for the playoffs. For my money, I’m not re-signing Lynn. I’m also not starting him in any playoff game unless we have a 3-0 advantage in a 7 game series. His danger errs more on the side of giving up HRs. Can’t trust him. Make him lose 30lbs but better not to waste time on changing him. Focus on the young guys and prepare to be surprised.

Is Kershaw done? This is a huge question. This could precipitate AF finally signing a top name by trade or FA for next season. Miller, Sheehan, Pepiot, and Grove along with Buehler, May, and Gonsolin. There should be possible starters out of this group depending on health or new acquisitions next season. That’s not a bad future to rely on.

Badger

The Dodgers may need to start Lynn in the postseason.

The Dodgers have now lost 4 starters on what will be a playoff team. Has that ever happened before? Add to that the 5th starter is now throwing 88 mph fastballs.

What a weird year.

Jeff

Yes. Very weird year. Perhaps the weirdest in recent history for me and it started with our choke last season in the playoffs. Continued with not replacing Trea Turner, the injury to Lux, throwing in the fixer uppers we acquired, Vargas vacancy and the rest of the farm mob trying to plug holes. Then we watch our pitching staff plucked one by one to the IL, and now we are stuck with rookies and a desparate, fat pitcher that loves to give up HRs and has lost his ability to SO batters. Add this on to the need of an upgrade to the infield at 3B,SS,2B and backup C, AF has his work cut out for him.

Lynn will never see the post season. He seems done, too.

Badger

.

Last edited 9 months ago by Badger

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