Monday, August 31, 2009

Dodgers get Thome and Garland

During the Dodgers' broadcast, it was stated by Vin Scully that the team has acquired Jim Thome and Jon Garland for players to be named later.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Humble Pie

Some followers of Duck Dodgers Bats Cleanup might have noticed what I posted about Tulowitzki's comment about the NL West race:

"We look at it as all the pressure's on them. They're supposed to win the division. They were up by 15 1/2 . We're just messing around, I guess." -Troy Tulowitzki

I proceeded to predict a favorable scenario for the Dodgers, which would make Troy eat his words:

Oh Troy. If the Rockies lose tomorrow, they could see their run cut short. Since the Jim Tracy has taken over, the Rockies have not hit a wall yet. That wall could come really soon. After tomorrow's game, they face the best of the Giants pitching staff, Lincecum, Cain, and a resurgent Zito at San Francisco, where the Giants have been swallowing up every team that they played against. Meanwhile, the Dodgers face the Reds on the road, and hopefully could get their licks against Homer Bailey and Bronson Arroyo. If somehow, the Dodgers take tomorrow's matinee and 2 out of 3 from the Reds, and the Rockies lose 3 out of the 3 from the Giants, the lead would be 6 games going into the final month of the season. If that should happen, the Rockies would have the Giants and Marlins chasing them down in the wildcard race.

How bout now, Troy? Still no pressure? The Rockies have finally hit a proverbial wall. After beating the Dodgers in a late inning rally and closing within 2 games of them, the Rox have proceeded to lose the last 2 against the Dodgers at Coors and managed to get swept by the Giants. They are now tied with the Giants in the wildcard and 6 games behind the Dodgers.

It appears my prediction has come true (I actually thought the Giants-Rockies series was 4 games, so I guess that part was wrong). Despite Tulo almost getting a cycle today, the Rockies fell once again to the Giants. This might be the only time Dodgers fans can cheer for the Giants. For doing us this tremendous favor, I hope we will swept the Giants up north and here at Dodger Stadium.

Humble pie, indeed.

Save Some for Sunday

Manny hit one out, like 15 hours too late. Juan Pierre did his best to fill in for Ethier, knocking in 2 runs with 3 hits. Kemp hit his 20th homer, and Jeff Weaver pitched another strong outting in relief.

Now, can the Dodgers save some for tomorrow's game? Usually when they score a bunch of runs, they have trouble scoring any the next game.

Remember Tulowitzki's comment about how the pressure was on the Dodgers? Well, now the Rockies have lost four in a row and are five games back and their wildcard lead is now cut to 1 game. Hey Troy, I guess the pressure is on you now!

Friday, August 28, 2009


I have been to 17 home games this season (not including the World Baseball Classic) and looking to a pleasant September.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Oops I've Fallen

The Rockies are now 4 games back. Despite a critical defensive mistake by Rafael Furcal, Broxton sealed the deal as the Dodgers gained another game on the second place Rox. Hopefully, their bats will aid them at another spacious ballpark, the Great American in Cincinnati. Best case scenario, the Blue Crew could be 7 games by weeks end.

Despite not having the best offensive showing at Coors Field, the pitching, once again, held the opposition in check. Newly acquired Vicente Padilla pitched well. The spot-starters have all pitched well for the team this season. When Kuroda does make it back soon, the Dodgers will have quite a dilemma in their rotation, especially if Haeger and Padilla continues to pitch well. Once again, you can't complain with having too many effective players on the team.

Nothing more for tonight.

Dodger Blue to the Grave

Though probably not available at the pavilion store, you can leave the human world in this swanky vessel. For around $4,400 for the casket and $800 for an urn, Dodgers fans can hope to they will see another Dodgers World Series before they end up in these. Perfectly matches the Valenzuela jersey you're going to be buried in.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Photo by Jack Dempsey, AP

After bashing James Loney last night, he finally made me eat my words, at least for one night. The Garbage Man hit a 3-run home run in the fourth inning, his first since July 10th, or last time the swallows came back to San Juan Capistrano. Ethier had his 6th multi-homer game of the season, hitting his 26th and 27th, and could go .300/30/100 this season. Wolf pitched another masterpiece and earned his third victory in a row, this time without having to provide his own run support. After Kershaw had a wonderful month and a half, Wolf has been the proxy ace in the pitching staff in August, especially with the injury to Kuroda and disappearance of early-season Billingsley.

The Dodgers push the Rockies back to 3 games and have a chance to push them all the way back to 4 games by winning the rubber-game tomorrow.

"We look at it as all the pressure's on them. They're supposed to win the division. They were up by 15 1/2 . We're just messing around, I guess." -Troy Tulowitzki

Oh Troy. If the Rockies lose tomorrow, they could see their run cut short. Since the Jim Tracy has taken over, the Rockies have not hit a wall yet. That wall could come really soon. After tomorrow's game, they face the best of the Giants pitching staff, Lincecum, Cain, and a resurgent Zito at San Francisco, where the Giants have been swallowing up every team that they played against. Meanwhile, the Dodgers face the Reds on the road, and hopefully could get their licks against Homer Bailey and Bronson Arroyo. If somehow, the Dodgers take tomorrow's matinee and 2 out of 3 from the Reds, and the Rockies lose 3 out of the 3 from the Giants, the lead would be 6 games going into the final month of the season. If that should happen, the Rockies would have the Giants and Marlins chasing them down in the wildcard race.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Garbage Man

(Photo by Tony Gutierrez, AP)

Most people who have been reading my posts or opinions on SOSG and TrueBlueLA know about how critical I have been on James Loney's offensive contribution, especially when the Dodgers did not make a push to get Victor Martinez or any other power-hitting first baseman. My main argument for getting some like Martinez is that the Dodgers lineup didn't need any more contact hitters. Instead, they would benefit more from someone who had pretty good power numbers, either with hitting homers or from slugging. Loney was a one-bag type of hitters, but had a pretty decent year, until the trade deadline.

Since the trade deadline, Loney has not had the best numbers: 15 for 71 (.211), 9 BB, 0 HR, 8 RBIs through today's game. Bad month but not terrible, right? If you take away the first three games of the month when he had 3 multi-hit games in a row, his numbers are as bad as it gets: 8 for 57 (.140), 0 HR, 3 RBIs in the past 17 games.

Tonight, he went 0 for 5, the only Dodgers position player without a base-hit. Also, he made a critical error in the bottom of the 10th that pretty much dashed all hopes of a victory.

I know I have been too critical on Loney, but why can't I be? I mean he is no Andruw Jones, right? The way he has been playing recently, he is Jones sans the expensive price tag. He did hit that grand slam last season in the playoffs and probably is hitting the worst slump of his young career. However, sometimes I still wonder how good would this team be if we had Martinez, Adrian Gonzalez, or even Adam Dunn batting behind Manny.

Sorry Loney, losing some games make the fans a little critical of you. I have been calling you Garbage Man from my seat in Field Box 53 every time you fail to drive in a run or get a base-hit. Please prove me wrong soon.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

No Runs, No Problem

Despite scoring a total of four runs in the past 2 games, the Dodgers are within a Sunday victory of sweeping the slumping Chicago Cubs. The Cubs have scored 1 run in the past 2 games and 4 runs total in the past 3 games versus Dodgers pitching. Spanning the past 24 innings, the Cubs have scored once on a bloop single by Ryan Theriot.

Saturday's matinee game featured another excellent start by knuckleballer, Charlie Haeger, who went 7 shutout innings, frustrating an anemic Cubs offense, that have really struggled on the road this season. Broxton survived a jam with runners on second and third after Kemp lost a flyball in sun that came off of Derek Lee's bat by striking out 2 and forcing a lineout. Sherrill got his first save of the year after laboring through the ninth.

The Dodgers got solo blasts from Kemp and Blake, and that was all they needed. Kemp's homer seemed like it was launched out of a cannon, as it landed over the home bullpen, onto the field level entrance area.

The Dodgers have not been playing their best since the All star break. With this victory, they finally break even record-wise, but still have the task of facing the second-place Rockies this coming week. Hopefully, their bats will wake up at the hitter-friendly confines of Coors Field. Tap the Rockies, indeed.

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Night With Friends

Nothing is better than watching baseball at the ballpark with some old friends, having a beer and doing some reminiscing about college. Tracy is from Chicago and Isaac lived there for the past two years. Naturally, Miss Sula is a Cubs fan and wore her personalized jersey. Eveytime she got up, she was promptly booed by all the people around us in Loge, which was oddly enjoyable.

We began our night by eating some very nice Chicago deep dish pizza at Masa in Echo Park for half-price, in commemoration of the Cubs being in town. The game was close until Russell Martin hit a grand slam in the sixth inning. I had no idea why the Cubs intentionally walked James Loney, who has been struggling for the past several weeks. Probably to induce a double-play, but they got burned severely. Tracy was not pleased, and Isaac instantly turned into a Dodgers fan.

We ended the night having a round of drinks at Mountain Bar in Chinatown. Issac is off to graduate school at Seoul National University next week, so I wish him all the best. It was another wonderful day that started at Royal/T for lunch and ended at the stadium and the dive bar. Everything was great except the horrible traffic everywhere I went.

Broxton Blows it on Kemp Bobblehead Night

Clayton Kershaw had another rocky game. Dodgers managed to tie up the game on 2 homers by Either and Blake, but Jonathan Broxton blew the lead after Martin's attempt to throw out Albert Pujols stealing second bounced into center field.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Off to Kemp Bobblehead Night

Truthfully, I am more psyched about this bobblehead than even the Manny one. Hopefully, there will be some Kemp heroics that would result in a Dodgers win in the rubber game against the Cardinals. I might try to hit up Crooks on Saturday to see Kemp and Loney's t-shirt collab. Hope there isn't too insane of a line.

Here is the collab shirts from Crooks' Twitter:

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Karmic Balance

After a horrible night of watching Dodgers pitcher Hiroki Kuroda get hit in the side of the head by a comeback line drive and having them eventually blowing their lead and losing the game, Sunday proved to be the the karmic equalizer to the Saturday blues.

Hiroki Kuroda was released from the hospital without any major injuries and was clear to fly back with the team for their next homestand. Randy Wolf, who have been plagued by bad luck this season, responded by singlehandedly winning the game for a slumping Dodgers team. He pitched into the 8th inning, giving up 3 runs. Even more impressive, Wolf did most of his damage with his bat by amassing three hits, including a homer and 3 RBIs, and came within a triple of hitting for a cycle.

For more on my Sunday, please visit my blog: an Infinite Saga.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Kuroda hit in the head

Hiroki Kuroda was hit in the side of the head on a comeback liner off the bat of Diamondbacks' pinch hitter Rusty Ryal in the bottom of the sixth inning. He was carried off on a stretch and was carted off the field, and taken off to nearby St Joseph hospital.

Friday, August 7, 2009

World Baseball Classic

I was glad the second World Baseball Classic semifinals and finals were held at Dodger Stadium. For those who are love baseball and an awesome World Cup-like atmosphere, I recommend everyone make it out for the next WBC in 2013. This time around, I made it to the Korea vs. e Venezuela semifinals, and the Korea vs. Japan finals. The finals was absolute pandemonium. It was more like World Cup Soccer match than an exhibition baseball game. Both sides were playing for national pride, and the sellout crowd didn't stop cheering until the game was over.

I really hoped the United States baseball team would take the WBC more seriously. It seemed they refused to send their best out there because a lot of Major League teams didn't want to subject their star players to injury. I felt countries like Cuba, Japan, Korea, and even Puerto Rico took this tournament more seriously than the Americans. I was disappointed with American pros in baseball. I felt like the US Mens basketball team had something to prove and went into the Beijing Olympics on a mission to restore their supremacy in the basketball world.

Despite having the US being crushed and eliminated in the semis by Japan, the Final was an epic game. Japan won on a late rally and base hit by Ichiro. Therefore, Japan have won the first two WBC championships. I still think that the first WBC was stolen by the Japanese baseball team, as they got into the elimination rounds on a technicality. I still think that Korea has nothing to be ashamed of. Japan only lost twice in the tournament, both times to Korea. They still hold a 4 to 3 advantage over the Japanese.

June 26 was a Magical Night

I was looking at some of the old pictures taken at Dodger Stadium came across some on June 26th. Not only was it my first time sitting next to the Dodgers bullpen, but a lot of interesting things happened that night.

So Pau Gasol was going to throw out the first pitch that night. He went down all the way to home base high-fiving everyone, including me. That was the longest Dodgers jersey I have ever seen. Maybe Mark Hendrickson had one as long.

Clayton Kershaw pitched a very good game, and Andre Ethier hit 3 home runs. However, I didn't see Griffey play that night. Also, no Manny this game, as he was still serving his PED suspension. It was still a very great night at the ballpark.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Ethier Delivers Another Knockout Blow

Andre Ethier hit a walkoff 3-run homer against Braves closer Rafael Soriano in the bottom of the 9th after two two singles by Juan Pierre and Rafael Furcal to start off the inning. It was his 5th walkoff hit and the 3rd walkoff homer of the season.

There is something really special with this guy, as well as this Dodgers team. The demeanor has also changed at Dodger Stadium. A lot of fans refuse to leave the ballpark early, in hopes of a late-inning Dodgers rally. With these results, why would you?

Tonight's View From Infield Reserve

Here is a little panoramic shot of the August 5th game from Infield Reserve, taken by my Dodgers bff, Kenny. The Infield Reserve is cursed, because the Dodgers have yet to win a game when we sit there. I have a rundown of all the games we went to this season, where we sat, and the results.

May 6 vs. Nationals, Lower Reserve 60RS, Row N, Result: W
May 7 vs. Nationals, Loge 162LG, Row L, Result: L
May 9 vs. Giants, Field Box MVP 7FD, Row W, Result: W
May 20 vs. Mets, Baseline Field, 45BL, Row 7, Result: W
June 10 vs. Padres, Infield Reserve 2RS, Row K, Result: L
June 17 vs. Athletics, Infield Reserve 8RS, Row F, Result: L
June 26 vs. Mariners, Field Box 53FD, Row D, Result: W
June 28 vs. Mariners, AYCE Pavilion 308PR, Row E, Result: L
July 1 vs. Rockies, Loge 162LG, Row N, Result: W
July 16 vs. Astros, Field Box 53FD, Row K, Result: L
July 19 vs. Astros, Field Box 50FD, Row AA, Result: W
July 20 vs. Reds, Top Deck, Row A, Result:W
July 22 vs. Reds, Lower Reserve 39RS, Row P, Result: W
July 24 vs. Marlins, Lower Reserve 28RS, Row P, Result: L
August 5 vs Brewers, Infield Reserve 2RS, Row L, Result: L

Record of Attended Home Games: 8-7
Infield Reserve Games: 0-4

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Prince Fielder is Down With the Koreans

Fittingly, on Korean Heritage night at Dodger Stadium, I noticed an interesting tattoo on Prince Fielder's neck. While many people might get Chinese or Japanese kanji characters as tattoos, Prince had his name written in Korean hangul, or alphabet. The characters display the word "wangja", which appropriately means "prince" in Korean. At least no one tricked him and told him to put a bad word in Korean.

From KoreaBeat

No Mercy

One night after having a 9th inning rally come 1 run short against the Brewers, the Dodgers made sure that this game would not require any late-inning heroics. The Blue Crew crushed the Brew Crew 17 to 4, scoring 9 earned runs off starter, Yovani Gallardo, and 8 more off their bullpen. If there was any doubt that Manny's hand was bothering him, all doubts were negated tonight, as he had a solo homer and a 2-run double down the line. It was his first run-batted-in since his pinch hit home run on his bobblehead night over 2 weeks ago.

Everyone in the lineup had their licks against the Brewers pitching staff, even Guillermo Mota. But most importantly, the Duck Dodgers favorite, Matt Kemp, had 4 hits, including a 2-run homer off R.J. Swindle to deep center to add insult to injury. The Bison had led the club with 5 RBIs.

Hiroki Kuroda had to get himself out of several jams and was finally hit up for 3 runs in the top of the 5th inning to trim the deficit to 1. However, the Dodgers put up 13 unanswered runs starting with Manny's solo shot. After struggling for runs for many games after the All-Star break, the Dodgers offense have scored 20 runs in the past 9 innings, including their 3 run rally last night.

The game got so out of hand, I was just collection Vin Scully zingers for most of the rout. Here are some of my favorites for the night:

"Strike out on that and you have been Swindled" (referring to Swindle's 52mph breaking ball)

"...and the beer has gone flat here."

"Since we have a no game right now..." (before discussing Trevor Hoffman's history against bases loaded jams)

Wild Thing, You Make My Heart Sing, You Walk Everything

If Clayton Kershaw didn't have a nickname before, he has one now, and it is "Wild Thing". For those who have watched the baseball comedy Major League, Charlie Sheen plays a rookie pitcher named Rick Vaughn who has amazing velocity but absolutely no control. In his first game, he walks the bases loaded with 12 straight balls. Thus, a fan sitting in the outfield pavilion sings the oldie, Wild Thing, to describe his performance.

Kershaw did him one better on Monday night, when he walked four straight batters, including walking in 2 runs. This was by far his worst performance in a month. This game showed that he was still human and still has a lot of improve upon, especially his control.

Should we be worried about him? Absolutely not. His previous game, he pitched 8 shutout innings and was nearly unhittable. Even Rick Vaughn had his issues with control before helping the Indians win the pennant. Most importantly, even Sandy Koufax did.

"Just a bit outside, he tried the corner and missed... Boy, how can these guys lay off pitches that close?"

-Harry Doyle, Major League

Welcome to My New Dodgers-Only Blog!

Hello Dodger Nation, this is Ken with my own Dodgers blog. I will still put my Dodgers thoughts on my main blog, but this page will be specifically for the Boys in Blue. Please support me!

Now why did I choose this name. In my many years as a Dodgers fan, I always wondered why we didn't have a mascot like the Philly Fanatic or the Running Sausages in Milwaukee. I kept thinking what the mascot might be and concluded that it would be funny to make Duck Dodgers the honorary icon. For those of you who don't know about Duck Dodgers, it is the space incarnation of Daffy Duck, who is a horrible space hero. He has the reputation of the lovable loser. Also, his name has Dodgers in it. So now you know!

Monday, August 3, 2009

A couple days after losing the MLB Final Vote and being snubbed by Charlie Manuel, Matt Kemp is showing the nation where amazing happens. Though he isn't an elite player just yet, Kemp has been playing on an impressive and all-star caliber level for the past week.

Just to illustrate how much of a tear Kemp is actually on, here is what Kemp has been doing on the roadtrip: He has a 7-game hitting streak, batting .556 (15-27) with 1HR and 9 RBIs. Also, Kemp has 5 multi-hit games during the roadtrip. In the past 3 games, he has gotten 9 hits in 12 official at-bats (.750).

Tonight, Kemp went 3 for 5 with a grand slam in the top of 10th, which proved to be the difference in the game. In the bottom of the 10th, he ended the game with a Willie Mays-esque basket catch running towards the center field warning track, preventing an extra base hit.

Now, my question is will Raul Ibanez play in the All-Star game? Also, if he doesn't play, will Manuel pick Kemp to fill in? Gut feeling he will not pick Kemp even if Ibanez sits out.