Jokers to the right;
Here I am – stuck in the middle with you.
- Scott Kazmir threw a 5-inning simulated game on Thursday and said he felt better. The only problem was that his fastball was at 82-84 which is 10 to 12 MPH off of what it should be. Of course, if he is pitching in pony league, he should do well. I don’t think he’s going to be a factor THIS year.
- The Dodger Offense managed just 3 hits on Thursday – one each by Barnes, Taylor and Calhoun. They couldn’t jump out of a boat and hit water! Oh well, this shall pass. Some days it’s like that. Hopefully, it’s not too many…
- Adrian Gonzalez and Yasiel Puig are also clowns. I don’t have a big problem with a little emotion, but if the pitch wasn’t a strike it was close. I can’t take credit for this, somebody else wrote it and it’s perfect: “In 24 hrs Gonzalez went from criticizing players for not participating in the WBC to saying he will never play in it again. He sounds like a big baby.” — Hawkeye Dodger Amen! Would you like some cheese with that whine?
- Another clown is anyone who wants Derek Norris as our backup catcher. I wouldn’t trade Austin Barnes for two of him. He put up a -0.4 fWAR last year while slashing .186/.255/.328. Put down the crack pipe – I like Austin Barnes.
- The final clown suit goes to anyone who thinks Franklin Gutierrez might not make the team. I have been saying that since they signed him. Dave Roberts just made it official. Now, if he doesn’t hit, well that’s another story.
- Yasiel Sierra looks like he can pitch at this level as a reliever. He’s not on the 40-man, but he has turned some heads. He could be in the mix later in the year.
- Hyun-Jin Ryu looks strong. I may be wrong that he will have to go to AAA. I’m walking that prediction back. I wasn’t wrong. I just wasn’t right. OK, Dang it! I was wrong! The way he looked today, he’ll be in the rotation. In two weeks, he should be able to go five… or more. So now my season opening rotation is Kershaw, Maeda, Hill, Ryu and McCarthy. Wood and Stripling are long men in the pen.
- With the bat Willie Calhoun is a stud. With the glove he’s a dud. Maybe that can change. I doubt it. Bring on the DH!
- Chris Taylor is OPS’ing 1.327 – what more can he do? Hit .520? He is. Kike Hernandez? He’s only hitting .750 while OPS’ing 2.000. It’s a very small sampling though. Kike likely will go to AAA… maybe.
- Grant Dayton is sick! I mean, he’s on track to be the 8th inning guy, especially if Romo’s back is still stiff.
- Finally, Darnell Sweeney won’t make the team, but he’s having a good spring. TrueBlueLa has a great article on him.
Stuck in the Middle:
That is all of us Dodger fans as we wait with baited breath to see how this team shakes out. The thing is, this team has so much depth and so many options that it’s scary… and unpredictable. I hope the best for Yasiel Puig, but down deep, I think he’s a Knucklehead and knuckleheads don’t change (as a rule). I think that anyone not named Seager, Bellinger. Buehler, Alvarez, Kershaw, Jansen, Turner and White are tradable. I am not saying it WILL happen, but it COULD – The Dodgers outfield could look like this by year end:
- LF Toles
- CF Thompson
- RF Braun
You never know…
Corey Seager is improving and maybe this will be a blessing disguise in that he might not be quite a worn-down at the end of the season.
So, here’s my Daily, Changed, Revised Pitching Staff Prediction:
Yeah, that’s 4 LH pitchers, but most of their splits don’t reflect that. That is subject to change… because… what about Eric Gagne? Should the Dodgers consider signing him? He pitched well for team Canada (small sampling). Yeah, it’s crazy, but…