Connect with us

Dodger Baseball

Thoughts on Dodgers Pitching and Financial Abilities

Some entertaining dialogue between Scott and Bluto on AF.  Contrary to some fans’ belief, the Dodgers are NOT the richest most powerful team in MLB.  I am assuming the term powerful is referring to being able to pursue and sign any player they truly want.  I believe the two NY teams are richer, and thus more powerful than LAD.  There are 18 teams with better operating income than LAD.

I have tried to discuss before with Bluto, and I am not sure we accomplished anything.  As I have continuously written, there is a vast difference between the value of an organization and liquidity.  Because the Dodgers (Mark Walter and Todd Boehly, primary owners) are worth $4.8 billion (per Forbes March 23, 2023), does not mean they have the liquidity to pay for all of the organization expenses, including debt payments.

I plan on getting into more depth on this topic in the winter, but for now here are some of the pertinent numbers for LAD.

  • Value – $4.8 billion (#2)
  • Debt – 9% (17th most of 30 MLB teams)
  • Revenue – $581 million (#2)
  • Net Operating Income – $14 million (#19)

 

https://www.forbes.com/mlb-valuations/list/#tab:overall

 

I have no idea what expenditures the Dodgers incur to take their revenues from $581MM to a $14MM operating income.  Or NYY with revenues of $657MM (#1) to a $16MM operating income (#18).  Operating income is defined as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.  LAD debt service payments are paid from the $14MM.  What are their debt service payments?  Need to see the financial statements.

Much of the revenues generated by NYY and LAD go into the revenue sharing pool, diminishing a large portion of their expendable revenue.

The Dodgers have 9% debt they have to service.  NYY has $0.  Boston, LAA, and Toronto have $0 debt as well.  SFG generates $421MM revenue and $75MM operating income, with 4% debt.

The richest and most powerful team in MLB has exactly 3 contracts in excess of 2 years:

  • Mookie Betts – 12 years – $365MM (2021-2032)
  • Freddie Freeman – 6 years – $162MM (2022-2027)
  • Chris Taylor – 4 years – $60MM (2022-2025)

Then we need to consider:

  • Mookie has $115MM deferred to 2033-2044
  • Freddie has $57MM deferred to 2028-2040

Those deferrals save about $19MM in current year salary.  Without those deferrals, LAD would be operating at a loss.  Why would the richest and most powerful team in MLB only have three contracts in excess of 2 years with 2 of them with significant deferred contract payments.

Sure Mark Walter and Todd Boehly are worth billions.  But they also purchased 27% of the Lakers in 2021, and are two of the primary owners of the Chelsea Football Club they purchased in May 2022 for $5.5BB.  Boehly is the primary chief executive of Chelsea.  They are investing heavily in that franchise.  The Dodgers may not be their primary interest, at least not for Boehly.

Scott wrote:

 

So they’re telling us that the Dodgers, the richest team with most resources in MLB were unable to find reliable healthy starting pitchers anywhere? In the world? I find that hard to believe.

 

I do not agree that the team is the richest with the most resources in MLB.  There is not a single metric that would indicate that the Dodgers are the richest or have the most resources.  Considerable?  Yes.  Most?  No.

The Dodgers went into the 2023 season wanting to be able to drop below the CBT threshold.  Not knowing the final suspension outcome for Trevor Bauer, the Dodgers refrained from high cost FA.  The news of the suspension was reported on December 22, 2022.

To the best of my recollection, there were 19 starting pitchers considered in the top 50 FA.  Of those 19, only 5 pitchers received 1 year contracts, and two of them were made by LAD (Noah Syndergaard and Clayton Kershaw).  For the past 2 years, this appeared to be the maximum contract length the Dodgers wanted to offer pitchers.

Only three pitchers were available after the suspension was reported:

  • Nathan Eovaldi – 3 years – signed 12-27-2022
  • Corey Kluber – 1 year – signed 12-28-2022
  • Michael Wacha – 1 year – signed 02-14-2023

For those that believe that the AF missed the boat on elite pitchers, maybe he should have signed Carlos Rodón, who eventually signed for 6 years and $162MM, or Jacob de Grom for 5 years and $185MM, or Justin Verlander at 2 years and $86.67MM with a $35MM vesting option for a 3rd year.  All three have had TJ surgery, so not all that healthy.  Two of the three were not healthy for most of the year (Rodón and de Grom).

  • Kodai Senga – 5 years – $75MM
  • Chris Bassitt – 3 years – $63MM – TJ surgery
  • Jameson Taillon – 4 years – $68MM – TJ surgery
  • Taijuan Walker – 4 years – $72MM – TJ surgery
  • Sean Manaea – 2 years – $25MM – Shoulder surgery
  • Andrew Heaney – 2 years – $25MM + incentives – TJ surgery
  • Nathan Eovaldi – 3 years – $34MM – 2 TJ surgeries
  • José Quintana – 2 years – $26MM – multiple injuries
  • Zach Eflin – 3 years – $40MM – Right patellar tendon surgery
  • Tyler Anderson – 3 years – $39MM – multiple injuries
  • Ross Stripling – 3 years – $25MM
  • Michael Wacha – 1 year – $7.5MM – Option clauses that will could make the contract either 3 years at $39.5MM (club options) or 4 years at $26MM (player options if club declines club options). – Multiple injuries including significant shoulder injuries
  • Corey Kluber – 1 year – $10MM – Multiple injuries
  • Mike Clevinger – 1 year – $8MM – 2 TJ surgeries

All but Eovaldi, Wacha, and Kluber were gone by the time the Bauer suspension news was reported.  MLB is a business, and not a hobby.  No team is going to make decisions on multi year 8 or 9 figure contracts without knowing the suspension terms for a potential $32 MM pitcher, who the Dodgers did not want on their roster.  As it turned out, Bauer was to be paid $22.5 million, basically ending any hopes of getting under the threshold.  But there were no difference making pitchers or players still available.

Also which of those pitchers were free from previous injuries?  Many (if not most) had at least one TJ surgery, with multiple pitchers having two.  Others had significant shoulder injuries.  What reliable HEALTHY SP was available during FA?  Name one.

The one pitcher that was traded that could have been a difference maker was the Marlins’ Pablo López.  Of course the Dodgers did not have a Luis Arraez to consummate a trade for a top shelf pitcher.

Then at the deadline:

There were ten starting pitchers (11 if you count Ryan Yarbrough – I am not).  I remember discussions that the Dodgers should have got Jack Flaherty or Lucas Giolito.  I was on the Giolito train, and that train would have been derailed.  Then when Michael Lorenzen pitched a no-hitter for Philadelphia many came out of the wood work and said that the Dodgers should have traded for Lorenzen.  In the end, that did not work out too well.

I am purposely excluding Max Scherzer who the Dodgers would never have traded for, and Justin Verlander, who made it clear that he only wanted to pitch for NYM or Houston, and would have vetoed any trade to any other team.

RHSP Michael Lorenzen (Philadelphia) – After 7 starts, Lorenzen was moved to bullpen (4 relief).  He pitched 47.1 IP and compiled a 5.51 ERA.

 

RHSP Jack Flaherty (Baltimore) – After 7 starts, Flaherty was moved to bullpen (2 relief).  He had 34.2 IP and compiled a 6.75 ERA.

 

RHSP Lucas Giolito – 6 starts for LAA – 32.2 IP, 6.89 ERA; 6 starts for Cleveland – 30.2 IP, 7.04 ERA

 

RHSP Aaron Civale (Tampa Bay) – 10 GS – 45.1 IP, 5.36 ERA

 

LHSP Rich Hill (San Diego) – 10 games, 5 starts, 27.1 IP, 8.23 ERA

 

LHSP Bailey Falter (Pittsburgh) – 10 games, 7 starts, 40.1 IP, 5.58 ERA

 

Lance Lynn (LAD) – 11 GS – 64.0 IP, 4.36 ERA

 

Jordan Montgomery (Texas) – 11 GS – 67.2 IP, 2.79 ERA

 

I also wanted to add Eduardo Rodriguez.  After the trade deadline, Rodriguez had 11 GS, 64.1 IP, 3.78 ERA

Of the starting pitchers who were traded that LAD had a chance with, Lance Lynn had 2nd best ERA, and 2nd most IP.  Rodriguez would have been ideal, but we know what happened.  I am convinced that the Dodgers wanted Rodriguez more than Montgomery, maybe because of the opt out that AF/BG might have been able to work around and extend.  But by the time the Rodriguez deal went south, Montgomery was already dealt to Texas.

No, neither Dylan Cease nor Mitch Keller were going to get traded.  CWS and Pittsburgh said they would listen (why not), but they were nowhere close to moving either pitcher.

Since we have no idea as to who the Dodgers did try to acquire, you cannot convince me that they missed out on a difference making pitcher at the deadline, especially when considering those pitchers that were actually moved.

Scott continued:

Look at the DBacks. They have at least two healthy and reliable starting pitchers and don’t have half the money or resources the Dodgers do. What’s the excuse?

Zac Gallen, a 3rd round pick out of University of North Carolina in 2016, was traded to Arizona for Jazz Chisholm Jr.  at the trade deadline during the 2019 season.  Who do the Dodgers have that is comparable to Chisholm in their system?  This was the second time Zac was traded before he reached MLB.  He was never considered a star.  He was the #14 top Miami prospect in 2018, and regressed to be #19 in 2019.

Merrill Kelly – 8th round pick by Tampa Bay  (251st overall) in 2010.  4 undistinguished years in the KBO.  Signed with his hometown team Arizona before 2019 at 30 years old.  Was undistinguished until he was 33 in 2022.

The Dodgers have that level of pitcher already in their system, but just not ready.

This is why I have respect for Ned Colletti. He may not have been the analytical genius Friedman is, but when the Dodgers needed something he would go out and get it, (Manny, Puig etc.), and was given half the resources Friedman was given.

Dodgers have to do better. Pitching wins championships.

 

I am not going to contradict your affinity for Colletti.  I thought he did well.  But Colletti’s teams had the best pitching in MLB in 2009 and 2nd best in 2008.  His Dodgers got beat by Philadelphia in the NLCS with not as good pitching.  No Colletti team got to the WS.  He did trade for Manny in 2008.  He also orchestrated the Nick Punto trade with Boston (2012).  Neither deal resulted in a WS appearance.

No Dodger team reached the WS since 1988 until AF assumed control.  Since 2015, three LAD teams have reached the WS.  Probably not this year, but the offense is just as much to blame as is the SP.

Pitching DOES NOT NECESSARILY WIN CHAMPIONSHIPS. If pitching does win championships, in addition to 2020, the Dodgers should have walked away with the WS last year, 2021, and 2019, and perhaps even 2018 and 2017.

I have thoughts as to what has happened in those years, but I will hold off until the Dodgers are eliminated.

I do not disagree that this year the Dodgers pitching was substandard.  That is not arguable.  But I do not blame AF.  In addition to the Bauer mess, they were trying to hold off on acquiring additional pitching until the “kids” were ready.  No reason to block or trade potentially top pitching prospects.  How many times did we read to let the kids play?  Well they did, and they are just not quite ready.  And contrary to what some may believe, I cannot see a pitcher they may have been interested in that they missed out on.

If anyone disagrees, advise as to which pitcher the Dodgers should have signed to a FA contract or traded for at the deadline.

For those who blame AF, I doubt there is anything I can write that will assuage those thoughts.  Is AF perfect?  Absolutely not.  But he could be

The only current GM or PBO that I recall that has more WS championships or even appearances are Brian Cashman and Dave Dombrowski.  NYY fans want to run Cashman out of NY.

 

 

 

 

63 Comments
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
63 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Scott Andes

Slight correction Jeff. The Dodgers are owned by Guggenheim Baseball Management, a group created to run the Dodgers. But the GBM is owned by Guggenheim partners, a company that specializes in financial services and has about 300 billion dollars in assets.

14 million in operating income doesn’t sound right, but still, Guggenheim partners the parent company has an annual revenue of 521 million dollars and 300 billion in assets. Mark Walter is the CEO, and controlling partner but there are other guys who also run the company and share ownership such as Andrew Rosenfeld, gerald Donini among a few others.

Regardless of their operating income, they have considerable money, assets and power. We’re not talking about the Pittsburgh Pirates or the Tampa Rays here. They’re top 5 in payroll, top 15 in all of sports at least in franchise valuation and have billions in assets. They’re not poor, and one the most influential sports franchises in the world. Yes, if the Dodgers want a player, they can go out and get them. Example, read the story of how the Dodgers orchestrated the Punto Adrian Gonzalez trade with the Red Sox. Kasten and Walter apparently made that happen on their own. That’s influence.

In terms of pennants and championships, almost all of the Dodger’s past GMs executives had more postseason success than Friedman and prioritized excellent starting pitching. Buzzy Bavasi won 4 pennants and 3 championships. Al Campanis won 4 pennants as well and a title in 81. Heck even Fred Claire won a title in 88 and acquired Kirk Gibson. While Ned Colletti did not win pennants, he still built a lot of very good clubs on a shoe string budget under Frank McCourt. 5 playoff appearances, 4 division titles and 3 NLCS appearances with 80-100 million dollar payrolls is nothing to sneeze at. Big difference between 100 million payroll and 200+ Friedman works with now.

Everything is Friedman’s fault because he’s the boss, and runs the team. He builds the rosters, acquires the players and makes those decisions. Years ago when I challenged Don Mattingly’s in game decisions I was told by many people that it wasn’t his fault because Colletti built the rosters and gave him a shitty roster. Even though he was working with budgets that were as small as the Oakland A’s. Nowadays its thr exact opposite. Dave Roberts gets most of the blame and takes all the heat, while nobody says a thing about Friedman and the front office. I’m told by many people that Roberts is an idiot or whatever, and Friedman is the genius.

There has to be some accountability for Friedman and the front office. Those guys have to be culpable at least to some degree here. They’ve made poor decisions in the past, and this years pitching staff was one of the worst we’ve seen in many years.

I’ll give you an example here. If the starship enterprise gets bombed by the Klingons and 100 crew members are injured. Do you blame that on Spock? Do you blame Chekov? No, you blame and hold Kirk accountable. Hes the captain, he makes the decisions and is responsible for the direction of the ship.

Well Friedman is Kirk in this analogy, and Roberts is Spock. In this case the Enterprise (the Dodger’s rotation and pitching staff) was in bad need of upgrades. Kirk never shrugged his shoulders and said…”what should we have done? No spare parts were available. Isn’t it just star trek”?

Let’s boldly go where the Friedman Dodgers have never gone before, postseason success. To do that, Friedman and the front office has to take some accountability ,otherwise this movie will continue year after year like a bad sequal.

BTW, pitching absolutely wins championships. Do the Nationals win without Strasburg and scherzer? Do the Red Sox win without Sale, Eovaldi etc? Do the cheaters win without Valdez, Verlander ? You can’t win without pitching. I can’t think of a single championship club that didn’t have at least 1-2 reliable starting pitchers.

Last edited 7 months ago by Scott Andes
Scott Andes

You would know more about that stuff than me, I admit. I’m not a business man at all, I’ve been poor my whole life.

Bumsrap

You should add this to your lead post.

Badger

Wow. That sounds like upper division private institution rap.

I still don’t trust corporate math.

Scott Andes

Jeff,

I’m not arguing with you on the financials here. Obviously you know more than I do about business and financials. I am not a business finance guy and it sounds like you are an expert on this topic.

I did say richest team, and you said considerable. Sounds like we are talking about symantics here. Either way, my original point is that the Dodgers have a lot of money and resources at their disposal. They have the ability to bring in any player they desire, as long as that player wants to play for the Dodgers and they are able to come to a deal, or have the trade chips to go after any player on the trade market.They’re not poor and they are not the Tampa Rays.

I understand that injuries are not his fault. I am not blaming him for those, although there are certain players like Gonsoliin who are hurt all the time, so it’s not unreasonable to assume they will get hurt again.

As for the trade, I don’t know if you read Molly Knight’s book a few years ago but she details how the trade was created. Apparently Kasten and Walter met with the Red Sox Chairman in the hotel lobby and shook hands on the deal. The Red Sox were frustrated with their underperformance and were looking to dump salary and start over. The Dodgers were looking for a star player like Adrian Gonzalez to put fans in seats, and give them a consistent middle of the order bat. Kasten and Walter caught him in the hotel lobby and pitched the deal. That is influence, and something else the Dodgers have that certain teams do not. (why does everyone keep calling it the Punto trade? Is that a joke?)

We can get further into the weeds on who the Dodgers could have acquired, I did name a couple of guys a few weeks ago, but that’s irrelevent at this point. The fact is, the Dodgers do not and did not have enough starting pitching to be successful in October (assuming they are eliminated by Arizona). And who’s job is it to make sure that they do and did? Success is subjective. Are the Dodgers a very successful regular season team? No question. However they are a very unsucessful postseasn club. If the players choked, and I agree they are choking, shouldn’t the Dodgers find some new players that play better in October? Who’s job is it to make sure they have players who perform better in the postseason?

Andrew Friedman. He’s the boss, he’s the captain. He’s Kirk. Walter and Kasten are in charge of the business and financial side, but Friedman is in charge of building the roster, recruiting players, drafting, building the farm system, negotiating free agent contracts, Salary negotiations, player evaluations, etc. It’s his responsibility to make sure the enterprise is going in the right direction. (another star trek analogy for all you trekkies ha ha)

That is what accountability is and that is the main topic I am brining up here. If we spend time making excuses such as (Who could have known?, or who should he have acquired? or he tried, or nobody was available), that just absolves him of any accountability. The Dodgers not having enough pitching is definitely on him. No more excuses.

Also, I don’t know who is out there that could replace him. I think I have said before that I wouldn’t mind seeing what someone like Theo Epstein could do, but he’s the only guy that immediately comes to mind.

The goal isn’t to win 100 games and get swept out of the playoffs every year. The goal is to win championships. The performance of the players is not directly on him, but availability and acquirement of resources definnitely is.

Acountability for Captain Kirk.

Scott Andes

Couple more thoughts here,

Who do the Dodgers have that is comparable to Chisholm in their system?

Correct. They don’t have that kind of star power in the farm right now. Who’s responsible for drafting and building the farm?

His Dodgers got beat by Philadelphia in the NLCS with not as good pitching.

The 2008-2009 Phillies had pretty good pitching. If I remember they had Cliff Lee (who shut out the Dodgers in one of the NLCS games) and Cole Hamels. They also had Brad Lidge closing out games and he was one of the best in the bigs at the time.

Pitching DOES NOT NECESSARILY WIN CHAMPIONSHIPS

I’m surprised to see you write this. If pitching doesn’t win championships, then what does? Yes you gotta have good hitting, hit with risp, good fielding, base running, and good pitching. But if you don’t have pitching then you don’t stand a chance. This series with the dbacks tells the tale. Yes hitting is a problem right now too, I’m not denying that, but if the Dodgers had any kind of starting pitching they would have had a much higher chance of winning at least 1 or both of those games

Let’s not make excuses here. There has to be accountability if the Dodgers get swept out of the NLDS.

Last edited 7 months ago by Scott Andes
Scott Andes

That was a primary reason yes, but they did have a 3-0 lead in the sevening inning of the elimination game. Should they have scored 4, runs? 5? 7 8? they should have been able to hold a 3-run lead. But most of their primary relievers got hurt, some from overuse. And who didn’t bother to replace those relievers with MLB quality relievers? Who didn’t make sure that they had at least a few healthy relievers?….yup Andrew Friedman.

That’s why they had guys like Yency Almonte, and Tomomy Khanle pitching the seventh inning of an elimation game. That contributed to the loss too.

Dionysus

In 2020 we were down 3-1 to Atlanta and came back.

Key is winning tonight. Then it’s one game to set up a winner-take-all.

Go blue

Badger

It’s 5:48 in the morning and I’ve read what is here twice. I’m impressed and just a bit overwhelmed by the information here. Maybe I should wait a bit before posting as I have little to add. But, here goes:

I’ve been involved with these financial discussions before. Admittedly finance is not my background. But it has always been my opinion that when it comes to financial claims, you cannot trust anything the Uber rich say. I’d give one glaring example but it would be at risk of crossing a line.

During those previous debates, of which I cannot claim victory, I came across this:

https://archives.cjr.org/the_audit/someone_is_lying_is_it_forbes.php

Its from years ago but in my estimation still rings true.

I don’t know who’s the most rich and powerful in MLB but I believe to a degree all of them are. Today you cannot own a MLB team if you aren’t wealthy. Of course there’s a ranking. You can rank just about anything. And my gut, and the stats Scott just posted, tell me the valued at $4.8 billion Dodgers are right up there with the NY teams. They can attempt to do whatever they want.

As to what wins championships, after what I’ve seen the last few years I believe it’s the October team that is hottest in all phases of baseball, hitting, pitching, running the bases and defense while at the same time not making bonehead mistakes. It’s Fall baseball, an independent and very short season. How good you were in the summer has no bearing on Fall play.

All the teams left have outstanding players. Which collection of players are playing at their peak? Clearly that ain’t the Dodgers.

It’s not too late to flip the switch. If Betts, Freeman and Smith can turn it on, the Dodgers have a shot.

Last edited 7 months ago by Badger
Jeff

If Betts, Freddie, & Smith, cannot turn it on and haven’t so far(it’s bottom of 8th and Dbacks up 4-2), what would be your suggestion for going forward next season? I can’t see them getting rid of these players as they all are top players during the season. But our roster is full of non-hitting players who are not helping much. I think they need to get younger, more athletic, consistent hitters with high ceiling. None of our hitters after Smith have high ceilings.

Dave

Everyone wants to win the WS, of course, but like someone mentioned above this wasn’t the year for the front office to go big yet they are still in the playoffs.I just take it for what it is, a fun season and maybe that’s all.

It reminds me of when I used to surf alot. On a big day there would be alot of great surfers out (Trestles,Salt Creek) and it didn’t make sense to paddle out to the peak and try to get good waves w all those pros there. So I would sit inside and grab smaller waves that snuck thru, waves that were better than I would get on a smaller day. Sure I would have loved to ride 8′ Lowers but 4′ Lowers is still pretty epic!

Most people on the beach just watched what was going on outside, that was all they saw because,well “Trestles is 8′ and pumping! ” But they forgot the proverbial question, ” Who is the best surfer in the water?” A. ” the one having the most fun! ”
Do you see the connection?

Last edited 7 months ago by Dave
Bluto

The Dodgers have 9% debt they have to service.

Have or had?

And where/when is this stat from:
There are 18 teams with better operating income than LAD.

Last edited 7 months ago by Bluto
Bluto

Thanks. Sorry I missed it.

My point, from way back when we last spoke about this subject, is that the Dodgers could spend way more money. They could lower their debt service quite easily (sell equity, pay down the debt, sell assets, float a public offering for a minority stake, etc.)

They may not be able to spend at Stevie Cohen levels, but they could spend more and not sweat it. That doesn’t mean they SHOULD. My point is they could spend a shitload. Most owners could.

Now, there are competitive issues and I think those are too often overlooked by fans just looking for the short term satisfaction of winning.

There are also business reasons! Just because, in all probability, the team could be run at a break-even or even small loss (because the name of the game is asset value appreciation), doesn’t mean it should be. Baseball is a business, and if the teams owners want to make a YonY profit, they should be commended for it.

tedraymond

I can certainly understand Scott’s frustration with AF. With that frustration there are a couple of points that I don’t agree. To state that everything that has gone wrong this season is AF’s fault. Everything? To have such disgust and criticism for a team’s management that won 100 games is confusing.

The Bauer situation was out of AF’s control during the offseason. It was clear that Manfred’s hate for Bauer and the Dodgers for signing him was apparent in his unnecessary delay in making a decision on Bauer’s status. Even without the Bauer issue the free agent market for starting pitching wasn’t that attractive. With Jeff’s analysis above there wasn’t a huge gamer changer in the bunch. And, the trade deadline options were even worse. How can marginal choices of starting pitching be AF’s fault? And, all the financial wealth available to the Dodgers could not change the quality of pitchers available. It’s very frustrating, but life ain’t always fair.

Let’s say we got Rodriguez at the deadline. As it turned out I don’t think it would have made much difference in the playoffs. Why? Because Urias’s stupidity, Kershaw’s injury (I agree with Jeff that CK is injured), who knows with Lynn (probably not a Dodger with Rodriguez), and the youngsters. Combine with the pitching the complete failure of the Dodgers 1-5 hitters who are hitting a collective .176 against the likes of Gallen and Kelly who the Dodgers have pounded in regular season. Badger, among others, knew the Dodgers needed to slug their way to a championship. That they haven’t so far is AF’s fault?

Hell, Roberts hasn’t even had an opportunity to do his “Dave Roberts playoff head scratchers”.

Bottom line is that unusual circumstances, injuries, poor production, and limited (and overpriced) FA/trade options happened this year. These are things that AF and the ownership could not foresee or control.

Again, to put all the blame on one person is wrong and misplaced. But, whatever. It’s one person’s opinion. It’s not going to change anything other than Scott’s blood pressure. But, I do agree with his sentiment that pitching wins championships. It’s always about the pitching as we all have observed this year with the Dodgers.

Carry on.

Last edited 7 months ago by tedraymond
Oldbear48

Finances or not, performance falls on the players. I am no financial wizard by a longshot. I am a fan, and fans really don’t care about the money, it isn’t theirs. They are down 2-0 to a team that they owned in the regular season simply because their stars have not played up to their talents. Mookie has been pedestrian for over a month.
Since his hot streak in August, he has exactly one homer. In the last 28 days, he is hitting .240 with 1 homer and 8 runs driven in. His OPS is .733. That is a far cry from the .979 he has for the season. Kershaw had the worst start of his career. It happens, just happened at the worst time possible.
But it happened to Koufax too. First game of the 1962 playoffs, Sandy gave up three runs in one inning pitched. He got out of the first but did not get an out in the second and Alston pulled him. They lost, 8-0. AF puts together the roster, that is his job, but he answers to the owners. None of us has any idea what constraints that they might put on him.
This year, the Bauer situation dragged on long enough for the Dodgers to miss out on players they might have wanted. I think a lot of fans dislike the fact that AF does so much bargain basement shopping. But sometimes, he hits paydirt. No one expected Anderson to pitch as well as he did last season.
Brasier came from nowhere. So now, the team has four rookie pitchers on the roster. It is leaning on its youth. Out of necessity. That they got this far is amazing. But they did it with a lot of team unity, and the collapse of their biggest so-called competition.
One game at a time, think ahead and you are doomed.

Badger

When I hear “pitching wins championships” I’m immediately reminded of hearing “defense wins championships” in football. Similar of course and it’s important to note pitching is the main ingredient in baseball defense.

I believe this is the first year in quite a while that Dodger pitching was middle of the pack. That being the case, how did we win 100 games and run away with the Division again? We did it by pummeling opposing pitching and scoring 900 runs, second only to Braves and the most the Dodgers have scored in 70 years. This is why when Jeff said “pitching doesn’t necessarily win championships” I agreed, with him. Nothing has changed since I first started bellowing “we gotta score 8”. This team has to score big to win. That of course starts with our HOF top of the lineup.

OhioDodger

You can talk about the pitching all you want, but with even a little hitting the series should be 1-1
Sooner or later, the players have to perform and produce to win. Especially your 2 superstars. Dodgers got their doors blown off in game 1. That loss is totally on the pitching. However, the bullpen kept them in game 2 and they had a very good chance to win the game if the offense had not pulled their annual post season disappearing act.

Awesome post Jeff. I am looking forward to more this winter.

Last edited 7 months ago by OhioDodger
Bumsrap

Thanks for taking the time to produce a thought provoking Post Jeff. It’s going to be a comment generator.

I thought Giolito was coming to LA whether it was needed or not. I like the rookie pitchers and was more than willing to see what they would do. They still might pitch the Dodgers forward.

I wanted more offense and was hoping to use our controllable youth in trade for controllable youth especially for the left side of the infield.

Last edited 7 months ago by Bumsrap
Bumsrap

I’m pretty sure I didn’t want the Dodgers to sign Bauer. AS I remember, one of the reasons they signed him was to use their wealth to keep him from going to another team. Sometimes, wealth helps make bad decisions. Jeff said so when he listed the Aces that signed for huge bucks and couldn’t stay healthy.

Badger

I believe Bauer was exonerated. MLB’s preoccupation with image didn’t allow justice to play out. The Dodgers would look very different with him in the rotation.

That said, I wasn’t crazy about the signing, but certainly understood why it was done.

I don’t know if there is answer on how to prevent injuries. Especially with pitchers who throw as hard as they can inning after inning. Maybe instead of throwing, learn how to pitch. Study Greg Maddux tapes for that education.

Last edited 7 months ago by Badger
Bumsrap

Exonerated from what? The law? Fine.

Badger

From criminal prosecution. He didn’t break any laws. That has to count for something. And apparently he was set up.

It’s not that I condone that behavior. I just that don’t give a damm. It’s not my business. It’s my opinion, and only my opinion, MLB, and at least the players union, should back their players until proven guilty. If found guilty, then you drop the hammer.

Bumsrap

So she analyzed profiles and decided Bauer was most likely to be willing to hit her. Apparently he is an easy mark as well.

Last edited 7 months ago by Bumsrap
Badger

I never said he was bright.

Singing the Blue

Actually, he’s very bright. He just has incredibly poor judgement.

Oldbear48

Steve Garvey is running for Diane Feinstein’s senate seat.

Bluto

It’s not quite Tuberville in Alabama, so hopefully Garvey has some interesting ideas.

Badger

Me too.

Why do I doubt it?

Fred Vogel

Because it’s Steve Garvey.

Bumsrap

The Dodgers might have had a great pitching plan that might have included good use of a piggyback system but that plan was made useless after the first inning of both losses.

I hope someone lays down a bunt if the 3rd baseman is shifted toward second and deep. Too bad TV doesn’t show where the infield is playing when batters come up to the plate.

Bobby

If Mookie gets a bunt hit to lead off the game, you and I will celebrate because it means these guys finally figured out they have to force the issue!

If Mookie gets a bunt hit to lead off the game, we win.

Scott Andes

Let’s start with not giving up runs in the first inning, and go from there.

Bluto

I’ve noticed, perhaps incorrectly, how HR dependent the other series are/have been.

This is especially true for the Braves/Phillies series. And also seems true for the Astros/Twins.

Bumsrap

Acuna got his first hit today in their series.

Bluto

Harper is something!

Badger

First inning sure went fast.

Bisonjones

This guy has nothing, and our first time through the lineup we look feeble. I would much rather see CT3 up at the dish than Peralta. Peralta has not squared up many balls in the last 6 weeks.

Badger

Dbacks can hit nothing. So far, the Dodgers can’t.

Bisonjones

This is not fun.

Badger

Not yet. Still time.

Bluto

I mean this stat says it all:

Lance Lynn gives up 4 home runs and is knocked out in the 3rd inning but manages to lower the Dodgers’ rotation ERA for this series from 40.50 to 25.07

Badger

Yoiks.

Lynn and the Dodgers are in the playoffs record books. 4 dingers in one inning. A record that won’t likely ever be broken. And we were here to see it. A memory that will last a lifetime.

Scott Andes

Shoot for the stars!

Bobby

I appreciate the improvements day to day!

Bluto

Look at it this way, can’t get worse.

why isn’t Pepiot being used? For experience alone?

Last edited 7 months ago by Bluto
Badger

They’re saving him for tomorrow?

Badger

It does little good to win the West. San Diego did it to us last year, Arizona this year. The Dodgers are not an October team. They’re just not.

Bisonjones

There are many Brooklynites (from way back in the day) who would agree with you. Dem bums, ya know? It seems to be in their DNA.

Last edited 7 months ago by Bisonjones
Badger

They’re built to entertain for 6 months, win the Division, lead the league in attendance then pack it up and go home in early October.

Bisonjones

Rinse and repeat. It is mighty frustrating. Seems like random, dumb luck would generate better outcomes than what we have seen these past two seasons (I actually felt good about the 2021 post-season: Taylor walk-off and super-exciting series taking out the Giants),

Bobby

100%.

And it is entertaining for about 10 months of the year. Just Oct and Nov suck. But then when Dec starts it becomes fun entertaining again

David E

DavidE

Badger

Hey David.

Bluto

Two thoughts I stole and one I have:

stolen:

I wish I could get people to appreciate the regular season for what it is. I love the playoffs and want a championship badly but every team but one loses in the tournament. Doing that doesn’t waste a good regular season, which should bring a lot of value on its own.

stolen:
Dodgers’ offense in the postseason:

2013: 10 G, 3.2 R/G
2014: 4 G, 3.75 R/G
2015: 5 G, 3.6 R/G
2016: 11 G, 3.3 R/G
2017: 15 G, 5.5 R/G (*)
2018: 16 G, 3.7 R/G
2019: 5 G, 4.4 R/G
2020: 18 G, 5.6 R/G (🏆)
2021: 12 G, 4 R/G
2022: 4 G, 3 R/G
2023: 3 G, 2 R/G
It’s the bats. Always has been. It’s no coincidence that their two best offensive postseasons resulted in a championship and one they got cheated out of. If the bats disappear, it doesn’t matter how good the pitching is (not that it was in this series — the starters, at least).
And it isn’t like they don’t have some good/great hitters! They just all decided to shit the bed at the same time. Every year. Different players. Baseball! 🫠

mine:
i know the MLB playoffs are a total crapshoot, but THAT SUCKS

Jeff

Well Bluto, this is one of the few things that I agree with you about. It’s the bats. But with our pitching, those chances for the bats gets diminished. You need at least good pitching, not necessarily great. We don’t have it. We have a lot of chokers on this team. Slumpers and Chokers. Slumpers and Chokers. A lot of good Max Muncy’s HRs did us in the playoffs. Doesn’t belong at 3B. Give me a bat to ball player any day. Put him on a diet along with Lance Lynn. Disgraceful. Athletes should never look like this.

Badger

Have to agree as well. We averaged over 5 in regular season. We do that and we’re still in. And the reason we didn’t score was the top of the lineup. 0 for 12. In an elimination game. Chokers. They are gonna have to wear it

Singing the Blue

comment deleted

Last edited 7 months ago by Singing the Blue

Must See

More in Dodger Baseball

63
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x