Anyone who suggests that the bullpen is somehow the problem hasn’t been paying attention. Even after the past two games, the Dodgers starting pitching and bullpen remain the very best in baseball. I am not a meteorologist but I do know that sometimes it is more humid than others. Barometric pressure, humidity, air temperature and other such things can create a good or poor environment for a pitcher. No excuses. It is what it is; Rich Hill and Hyun-Jin Ryu were horrible the past two games.
Maybe it’s weather related… actually, it is most certainly weather related, but you still have to play the game. It didn’t seem to bother Robbie Ray as much, but he is s true fastball pitcher. Hill and Ryu are very effective only when they have their curveballs working and they were not even close to working the past two days. This is baseball. Stuff happens. Teams get hot, players get hot, players get cold, teams get cold. It happens all the time. Just when you think a team will never win again, they go on a tear and sometimes when you think they can’t lose, they run a double-digit string of losses.
This is not suddenly a flawed team. It a very good, balanced team that is slumping. Seager is hurt and sitting (and maybe should for a couple more weeks). Cody Bellinger is back after missing 9 games. Kershaw, Wood, Stewart and Ethier are due back Friday and A-Gon is trying to get his sea legs. Oh, and Justin Turner, Kike Hernandez and Logan Forsythe are mired in slumps. It happens all the time. Baseball is a crazy game. It will drive you mad some times.
But, this is the team that won 51 of 60 games. This is the team that has incredible depth. This is a team built for the long haul and I believe this is the team that will win it all. So, take a deep breath – it will be September 1st soon and the final push to the playoffs begins. There is no such thing as a good losing streak, but if you are going to have one, now is a good time. There’s plenty of time to get straightened out get back to their winning ways.
Rants and Raves
- Tim Locastro continues to hit at AAA while playing CF and 2B (.395 BA/1.025 OPS)
- Joc Pederson is up to .200 and playing LF.
- Rios was 4-5 with a Grand Slam and 6 RBI.
- Liberatore pitched an inning at OKC and allowed 3 hits and 2 runs
- Walker Buehler pitched a perfect 9th without a strikeout – just 3 groundball outs.
- Tulsa won 16-0 (that’s not a typo). Mitch White pitched 5 innings and allowed 2 hits. His AA ERA is now 2.57.
- Yusniel Diaz is starting to figure it out. in 26 games at AA he is hitting .348/.920 OPS/.414 OB%. He may need another year, but maybe not. It seems that when it clicks, it’s time to hit the show.
- Matt Beaty is quietly having a great season.
- Alex Verdugo looks gassed.
- Jeren Kendall is still struggling with Low -A Pitching
- Cristian Santana is still doing very well at GL – the Dodgers have quite the stockpile of catchers.
- Unless the Dodgers have ideas of playing Austin Barnes at 2B next year, maybe they should trade Yasmani Grandal before electronic balls and strikes take over. He has a lot of value. All catchers do. Yasmani is having a strange year. His BA is up, but his walk rate is way down as is his OB% and OPS.
- Kike needs some serious work on his swing… especially against RHP.
- Yasiel Puig should get better by the day as he applies his new hitting science to the game. Maybe he can start hitting LHP?
- I think Forsythe should lead off against LHP – he has a .443 OB% and .895 OPS. With Seager out, mover Taylor to #2.
- Can Andre Ethier rebound in September?
- It’s going to be an interesting September.., Buehler will almost certainly be up and so should Font… maybe Verdugo.
- Who is Brandon McCarthy?
- Maybe you wonder why Chad Billingsley is todays photo? Why did I do that, you might wonder? Because I felt like it! That’s all folks! 😉
- I don’t generally like pre-season football, but it’s the last game of pre-season so I am going to see the No Luck Colts play tonight against my better judgement.