Who Should Be The Dodgers Catcher?

Lert me start all this by saying that I was TOTALLY in favor of the Dee Gordon trade.  I thought Austin Barnes and Kike Hernandez would be very good players.  FAZ parlayed Andrew Heaney into Howie Kendrick who played a nice role for the Dodgers a couple of years ago and even though Chris Hatcher was a bust as a Dodger, I would still do that trade in a New York minute.

Kike Hernandez is two year younger than Austin and (some of you will make fun of me for saying this), but I think Kike will eventually hit 30 HR a season in this league. He has issues against RH pitching, but maybe that can be improved upon as he matures.  He has excellent power and is younger than Chris Taylor.  I think he will have a breakout year as soon as next year! However, I digress… Who should be the Dodgers Catcher?

Many of you think Austin Barnes should take Yasmani’s place and while we don’t lose a lot when Austin is the Catcher, you need to consider this:

  • When Barnes catches the Dodgers have a 3.75 ERA.

  • When Grandal catches the Dodgers have a 3.20. ERA. That’s a half run less a game!

  • Yasmani has thrown out 32% of baserunners who try and steal, while Austin only gets 20%.

  • Austin Barnes fielding PCT is .992. Yasmani’s is .995.

  • Grandal has 6 errors in twice as many innings as Barnes (4).

  • The only area Barnes is better is Passed Balls. Grandal has 15 while Barnes has only 3 in half as many innings.

However, Grandal is one of the TOP 3 Pitch Framers in the game and the dude does have 22 HR in what I consider a down year for him.
As long a pitch framing is a thing, Yasmani will be the primary catcher… unless his offensive production becomes a liability. The passed balls are the byproduct of moving his glove in framing. It pays off, however!

This year, the Dodgers have Logan Forsythe at 2B, but they could trade him or pay him $1 Million to walk and save $7.5 Million NEXT year.  Logan Forsythe is a very good defensive 2B, but has been disappointing against RHP.  Next year, I would move Austin Barnes to 2B – he’s a very good 2B as well and his arm would play better at 2B than behind the plate.

I think Austin Barnes is a .300 hitter if he plays every day. He is a very good, but not GREAT catcher. We need to enjoy this run of the 2017 Dodgers, because next year, the team will look very different.  There are lots of directions te team could go, but Forsythe, Ethier and Granderson won’t be on the roster.  Adrian may well be forced to retire with his back… or maybe the Dodgers could work out a personal services contract with him to be the face of the Dodgers as Tommy fades.

Talent wise, Alex Verdugo is in the same category as Seager and Bellinger (except for power).  The mental aspect of his game is what will determine how good he becomes.  He could very well be the 2018 Rookie of the Year. Right about now though, the Playoff Roster is Paramount.  Look for a surprise… maybe two. Just say “NO” to El Gasolino!

The Dodgers now have 102 wins and are starting to get “White Hot” again.  Maybe Doc’s strategy is working and they have flipped the switch.  One more win and they set the all-time LA Dodger record for wins.  One more win and they clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. After Sunday, all they need are 11 more wins. Man, Rich Hill is pitching like Kershaw and Darvish and Alex Wood is not pleased with the possibility of going to the pen.  I would not want him to be, but Just Bloom Where You Are Planted, Alex!

Photo Credit: Dodgers.com and MLB 

It’s Go Time!

Posted by Mark Timmons

We started LA Dodger Talk in 2001. This site is about giving another perspective outside of the average day-to-day reporting. We don’t do game recaps or such things — lots of sites do that well. I value sabermetrics, but don’t think they are the “end-all-be-all.”. This is where you should start your day as a Dodger Fan. Welcome! We’d like to hear your voice.

This article has 89 Comments

  1. I actually have no problem with Barnes going between 2nd and Catcher in a short series. The team is better with Barnes at 2nd against RHP, and Grandal has more power as a left hand hitter. I can see Logan starting against Ray, and Utley against one of the RH pitchers (Godley? Walker? Greinke?) with Barnes behind the plate. But Barnes should play the other 3 at 2nd and Grandal should catch 4 out of 5. Egos have to step aside for the playoffs, which add to my already stratospheric respect for Adrian Gonzalez. With his stature, he could have “forced” his way on to the playoff roster, but he rightly recognized that he cannot be counted on because of his back, and the team has a better chance of winning with someone else.

  2. Going back to yesterday, picking arbitrary dates to justify a viewpoint is used by fan bases that view the team with optimism as well as those that view the team with skepticism. Some manage to slip into pessimism. Dodger fans were exuberant when the team was playing at a historic rate, but remained cautious knowing that what happens in May, June, July, & August is irrelevant in determining the eventual WS winner. But when the Dodgers were losing at a historic rate, many took the position that the real team was the one that was mired in the losing streak vs. the team that played late spring and early summer, and have no chance to win the WS. At least one on this site stated that the DBacks were going to win the Division, forget about home field advantage. Now the Dodgers have HFA thru NLCS, and are one win or one Cleveland and Houston loss away from HFA thru WS.
    .
    Most of the pre-season “experts” did pick the Dodgers to have the best record in MLB, but none picked a 100+ win season. So the team did play better than expected, but not by a lot. It appears that the experts were right in picking the Dodgers as the best team in MLB. Not the team that was on a .700 clip or the team that was 5-20. So Mark picked an arbitrary date of September 21, while others wanted to dwell on August 24 to today (12-22). They are both arbitrary dates that speak more about how the person views the prospects of their favorite baseball team vs. how the baseball team will actually play. I choose to agree with Mark’s Sept 21 date. But then again I believed the 92 team (63 wins) would win the WS as well as the 2005, 67, 86, and 87 teams (teams that won 71-73 games for the season). I always believe the Dodgers will win the WS. But more importantly, Doc gave a clue as to what he believes. He intimated that he would focus on the final 10 games to prepare for the playoffs. He never felt threatened by the DBacks winning the division, and remained confident that his team would get the HFA throughout.
    .
    The team is again winning as a team. Different players are stepping up each game. They have won 6 out of the last 7, and could have won the one game they lost. During these last 7 games, players that most lost confidence in (especially since August 24) seem to have “flipped the switch”:
    .
    Curtis Granderson – .333/.412/.800/1.212
    Logan Forsythe – .333/.417/.619/1.036
    Yasmani Grandal – .353/.400/.824/1.224
    Enrique Hernandez – .300/.500/.500/1.000
    Others
    Austin Barnes – .333/.375/.867/1.242
    Yasiel Puig – .286/.313/.571/.884
    Corey Seager – .238/.360/.524/.884
    .
    JT has been hurt, and Chris Taylor and Cody Bellinger have not hit well during this span. But the optimist in me believes that they will turn it around.
    .
    During the decline, relief pitchers pitched themselves off of the playoff roster. Doc had the big lead, and could afford to keep pushing Baez, Stripling, Stewart (as a starter), Font, Ravin, and others. It allowed him to keep others fresh, and tentatively identify relief roles. Maeda becomes the long reliever over Stripling and Stewart. Cingrani is the new JP Howell (loogy). Morrow looks like the 8th inning bridge to Jansen. Fields and Watson become the right and left handed middle relievers. And Alex Wood becomes the wild card. Will he start or will he relieve? As I previously opined, I think the team is better if he is in the pen able to go 1-2 innings in Games 1, 3, and 5, ala Andrew Miller. Ryu is a capable starter.
    .
    With AGon out of the playoffs, does that put Farmer on the roster, or McCarthy/Buehler? I still believe that FAZ and Doc want the extra pitcher. Farmer is not really an option at catcher having never caught any of the expected starters. It would be tough to have him make his inaugural catching game in the playoffs.

    1. AC

      I think everyone can learn a lot from this season.

      The Dodgers have never went on a losing streak beyond 6 games, in the last five years, so that long losing streak, tested the will of not only the players, but also the will of the fan base.

      And since the Dodgers have never done anything easy, and they haven’t went all the way for a very long time, it is easy and understandable, that it doesn’t take much for some of the fan base, to become negative pretty easily, after so many years.

      I myself, didn’t necessarily feel negative, because I guess I didn’t know how to feel, with the two extremes, the team went through, this year!

      Most fans know the numbers, and know it is to long of a season to make any snap judgement, in such a short period, like when we were on that losing streak. but most fans still see the Dodgers more with their hearts, and I believe they are only getting negative, to try to protect their hearts.

  3. I’m not so sure they buy out Forsythe. He’s beginning to show what he can do and, supposedly, is a good guy in the clubhouse.

    I have no doubt Hernandez can hit 30 home runs a season… in a Southpaw-only league.

    What happens with Toles next year? Does he split LF with Hernandez? If so, what happens with Verdugo?

    I’m not a robot, but I play one on TV.

    1. Rudy

      I don’t think Forsythe has proved he can hit righties, because most of the hits he has got recently, were off a lefties, and he has hit lefties well, all year.

      But I didn’t think they would resign Howie, so I don’t think we know, what they will do.

      And if Toles is fine, I think he has more to offer this team, then Verdugo does!

      That is because Toles has proven he can hit major league pitching, and he not only has more power then Vergudo, he is one, if not the fastest player, on this team!

      But baseball people will say, this is a good problem to have!

      I already said I would say I was a robot any time, if this place would go back to the one simply match equation, again!

      That was not only simpler, it was faster, and it didn’t take you away from your comment.

      1. Interesting to see how the organization views the OF.

        Obviously Friedman has ties to Toles, and Toles was a prime platooner in LF before the injury.

        And Verdugo didn’t make a massive splash along the lines of Seager/Bellinger, but he’s always been rated (from what I read) as a level below those two elites.

    2. I think what happens with Logan is dependent on what other moves are made and what the costs of those moves are, and how the luxury tax will be exploited. They are not going to pay $11M to Logan if they end up with Stanton (which I do not believe will ever happen). They will not pay $11M to Logan if they re-sign Darvish (which I believe the chances are remote). Do they sign Lorenzo Cain to play CF and move Taylor to 2B, and not pick up Logan’s option ? Do they sign Eric Hosmer to play 1B, move Bellinger to CF and Taylor to 2B? Can they move a McCarthy or Kazmir contract?
      .
      The problem with the above scenarios, is that they will not occur before Logan’s option has to be exercised. I agree with Mark that there will be changes, and I am just as sure that FAZ has a very good idea as to what direction they are going to go. They know better than anyone else, what areas they need to improve on. They know better than anyone else who is available through FA or trade and what changes are plausible through those means. They know better than anyone else who might be able to help from the farm. IMO there is nothing Logan can do between now and when his option is picked up, or bought out, that will change their course.

  4. Barnes vs. Grandal? A nice problem to have. Both are plus players. Grandal has greatly improved his throwing and his pitch calling over the past several years. (AJ Ellis worked hard with him on the pitch calling.) Grandal is not a good pitch blocker and his passed ball numbers have never been good. He is a plus offensive player (albeit a streaky one).

    Barnes has never been an every day catcher. Would his weaknesses be exposed if he played every day, or would he prove to be even better as an every day player (like Turner or Taylor)? I don’t know but he has certainly earned the chance to be an every day player. He isn’t as good a defender as the Dodgers’ other incumbents at 2B. Would he improve if he played every day? He might. There is ample precedent (think Craig Biggio) for that.

    As others here have posted, the Dodgers were never as good as the team that went 43 – 7 nor as bad as the team that lost 15 of 16. They are a very good team but alas, so are the Nationals, D-backs, Indians and Astros.

    My beef was the “taking the foot off of the accelerator” by management. Even those with the most rose-colored glasses must acknowledge that the team lost confidence and looked discombobulated on the field for most of the month of September. Roles are only now being re-defined; the general sloppiness is improving. As one unnamed player stated in an interview with ESPN.com, ” It wasn’t broke, but we fixed it anyway.” If the players were saying that, those of us in the ranks of the fans would have some justification for questioning all of the fiddling that the Dodgers did with the roster and player usage.

    As for “flipping the switch”, maybe. The Dodgers scored 7 runs in 3 games against the hated Giants and lost 3 of 4 to the hapless Phillies prior to demolishing the Pads. They play the Rox in their launching pad next and the Rox are still trying to nail down the 2nd wild card. I always cringe when the Dodgers play there – not only is it a place of injuries, but the hitters sometimes come away with bad habits and the bullpen gets worn down. We won’t know if the “switch is flipped” until 10/6 when the playoffs start.

  5. As much as we would love for it to be like fantasy baseball and plug Barnes into 2nd base for the playoffs, I don’t see it happening. How many starts has he gotten at 2nd this year? How many innings even? He made an error there the other night turning a DP. Pitching and defense wins games in the playoffs. Forsythe will be the primary 2nd baseman with Utley getting some starts too.

    Like Rudy, I don’t think it is automatic that the Dodgers let Forsythe go especially as well as he has hit lefties and played defense at both 2nd and 3rd. He’s hit lefties better than Kike but with less power. Remember when we couldn’t hit lefties? Sure they may trade him, but guys are usually better the 2nd year they join a new team. They’re acclimated and they tend to feel less pressure. I have to believe his numbers against righties will move back to the norm for Logan. Could they move Barnes to 2nd next year? Yes, but not without another catcher who is ready. Sorry, Ruiz and Smith won’t be ready yet. LOL, Kike could hit 30 bombs in a southpaw only league. Unfortunately, he hits worse than some pitchers against righties. He K’s 1/3 of the time.

    There is very little difference from Grandal to Barnes when it comes to framing. More starts and I bet Barnes is just as high as Grandal. I think Barnes is already better at the low strike. I think Grandal is better at calling a game, but not by much. ERA? I’m sure that’s a bit skewed by Grandal getting almost all of Kershaw’s starts. Grandal is way better throwing to 2nd base when it comes to throwing out baserunner on a steal or bunt. Barnes is better at blocking balls. Yes, some of Yaz’s issues are do to framing everything, but Barnes is a premier framer too and misses less balls and blocks balls better in the dirt. I think Yaz is better at getting the high strike out of pitchers. Just being bigger, he set ups higher a little better. Remember when we lost a game in the playoffs because AJ let one go between his legs? A lot to consider. Barnes is a better hitter with less power, but more likely to advance a runner when needed. Ultimately it may come down to who the pitchers prefer to throw to at this point.

    As for next year, I think it will be a similar set up with the time being more 50/50 because it could be Grandal’s last year and either Smith or Ruiz should be ready to join Barnes in 2019.

    1. Hawkeye

      I agree with your assessments of both Grandal’s and Barnes’ strengths, and weaknesses.

      And your right, it is a killer in these close one run games, when any catcher, allows a pass ball.

      Last year when we played the Nats, we had a lot of trouble stopping Trea Turner’s running game, when Hill was pitching.

      But since a runner usually steals the base on the pitcher, I don’t know if Grandal’s arm, would make that big of a difference, there, Hill just might have to change the times, in his delivery.

      I do think your right, this decision might end up being made, by each difference starting pitcher, and who they feel more comfortable, throwing to.

      But I do feel very comfortable that Roberts will make the right decision, on which catcher, will give the team, the best chance to win, and that probably will change, from game to game.

      I also think your right about Barnes not playing second, in the post season.

      Because I think this front office values defense to much, to put Barnes out there at second, in the post season.

      But I do think Barnes is very capable of being a full time second baseman, if he is playing there, more often.

      With all these different shifts that the team uses, we don’t want to give another run away, because someone is not familiar, with where they need to be, in a shift.

    2. The Dodgers certainly have a lot of options.

      I was 100% certain of Cody and Corey. I’m 89.7% certain of Alex. It all centers around his character. I am 100% certain on Kay Bear.If Alex can be ROY in 2018, Kay Bear can be ROY in 2019. Ruiz is on a fast track. I think Will Smith will be Austin Barnes in 2020 (except with a bigger arm and less BA).

      In 2018, I can see Taylor being in CF, LF or 2B. I could see Forsythe being on or off the team. Same with Pedserson and Puig. I could see Bellinger at 1B or CF or RF or LF. I could see Stanton in RF or LF. I think the only sure thigs are Turner at 3B (or may he moves to 2B ;)), Seager at SS and Grandal at C. Beyond that, positions could change.

      1. I think Verdugo does not make the team out of ST next season and they don’t start his option clock ticking too soon. That does not mean he can’t win ROY, he could be called up if raking at OKC and his head is right. The guy I see making the team next year is Buehler, slotting into the rotation after they clear a spot for him in the off season. I think it’s his spot to lose in ST and he could have a ROY season.

    3. All well stated, as usual. I am intrigued by Farmer as he can play the corners as well as catch and is 5 for 13 pinch hitting. They need another RH bat off the bench and as you have pointed out it allows some more flexibility with Barnes. If they carry 11 pitchers Farmer gets in, if it’s 12 he is on the bubble. I like Segedin’s bat but not his glove.

      Grandal has his final arb year next season and they may sign him for 1 year or extend him. He could still be traded later when the kids are ready even with a 3 or 4 year deal in place at a reasonable number. Barnes contract is a ridiculous value: 2 years team control and 3 years arb. There are many other off season decisions to make and I could see a continuation of the development from within or a blockbuster move, it could go either way. A lot may depend on how this team does in the post season.

        1. I wish we knew what we had in Farmer. If he’s up to the challenge, Farmer could allow Barnes to play 2B next year. I have no doubt that he can do it, but do they want to put him there for one year and then try to move him back to catcher. Will that stunt his development? Heck, do they see Taylor as the CF of the future or will he move to 2B. Good problems to have. I just know that Barnes is missed offensively when he’s not out there.

          I tend to agree about Verdugo. He’s going to have to light it up in ST. I think he begins in AAA. Like MJ, I’m a Toles fan and with Taylor in the lineup, he doesn’t have to hit leadoff. Buehler will be interesting too. They may wait to start his clock as well. He’s got the stuff that’s for sure, The Dodgers have Kershaw, Hill, Wood, Maeda, Ryu, Urias, McCarthy, Stewart, Kazmir, and Buehler all under contract next year. I agree with Mark when it comes to Stewart. He’s a bullpen piece to me as is Stripling. I think Kazmir is next year’s Carl Crawford. He will be paid to go away. BTW, CNN had a piece on Crawford today. http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2734609-former-all-star-carl-crawford-is-making-219m-to-not-play-and-hes-ok-with-it?utm_source=cnn.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=editorial

          1. Urias won’t be ready at the outset and we’ve seen the starters are fragile. I have a feeling Ryu or McCarthy will be moved in the off season, both are in the final year of their contracts. Buehler potentially could out pitch Maeda in ST, Kenta starts slowly. Kershaw, Hill, Wood and Buehler make a dynamic front 4 with the others fighting for the 5 spot. It will be an interesting post season leading to an interesting off season.

          2. McCarthy has a club option for $5 million for 2019 which is why I would think his marketable. He makes $10 million in 2018 and $5 million in 2019.

          3. Vegas, I think Buehler will be in the rotation next year just not sure it will be right out of spring training.

  6. Verdugo doesn’t pass the smell test for me. There is something shady about him that I have never liked way back when I saw him play HS baseball. He will be packaged along with Puig in a trade this off season. AGon needs to be the laureate batting coach a la Bill Muellar who was paid his player salary as an executive so it wouldn’t count as team payroll. I think the Dodgers are going to be better next year. We just need 2a and 2b starters. Enough with the McCarthy and Kazmir experiments. I’d even consider trading Alex Wood while his value is high. I like him a lot, but I think he will break down soon. I think that Stanton to the LA has legs and is doable if FLA picks up some salary and Stanton defers some money. He can then get traded to an AL team to DH. While I’m glad the Dodgers are white hot I’m not to excited it was the Padres. If it would have been the D-wacks, I’d feel a little better.

    1. Hey Gonzo,

      Do you have any substance to believe that the Dodgers aren’t high on Verdugo? Obviously, you have your own smell test, but as recently as the trade deadline the front office was high on Verdugo.

      Also, where did you hear that story on Bill Meullar’s salary as a hitting coach? It sounds like bull to me as it would drive the salary structure of actual hitting coaches through the roof.

      1. I remember Mueller being moved into the front office for like a year when he couldn’t play anymore. I’m not sure whether or not it didn’t count toward the luxury tax though.

    2. Gonzo,

      A couple of things:

      1. Mueller was owed $3 million while A-Gon is owed $21 million. A player’s contract is a player’s contract and can’t be just transferred to the front office. Mueller could no longer play and maybe the Dodgers got an insurance payout, but his salary counted.

      2. Verdugo won’t be traded unless someone overwhelms them. They could have had JD Martinez if they would have parted with him. His issues are his Old Man’s Meddling. There lots of issues in HS with him, but he has never been in any trouble with the law or anything. It’s just a feeling of entitlement he got from his dad. I have a DIRECT pipeline to this. Alex Verdugo could be Tony Gwynn… or not!

  7. I think we will see Toles, Taylor and Verdugo in the outfield. Good speed all the way around. Pretty good arms. Puig will be traded. Beuhler will be a starter. He will replace Darvish. Pederson is gone. Barnes will play second. These are all guesses. That is all we can do looking at next season. A fun time. I can see one to two farm kids making the team each year.

    1. You may be right about the outfield. It will require Verdugo winning the job in ST. I would not be surprised to see him start in AAA however. I except an off season move acquiring an outfielder if Pederson and Puig are both moved. I don’t see them putting all their eggs in a basket which includes a rookie and an returning player who was significantly injured.

      I doubt Barnes will be starting 2B however. Suspect front office still sees a Grandal/Barnes catching platoon. I would not be surprised to see Forsyth at 2nd next year unless he craters in the post season.

      1. Grinch

        Toles didn’t have any further damage in his knee, and his surgeon said he will be just fine.

        Forsythe is hitting at the Mendoza line, against righties, and he is slugging in the 300s against righties, and his OPS is in 500s or lower against righties.

      2. Barnes isn’t seen as a 2b solution.

        I wouldn’t be opposed to bringing Forsythe back, there’s a significant chance he’ll return to previous performance levels. No guarantees of course.

        I think the team sees Toles as a platoon player. I think I read that.

        1. Bluto

          Toles had some of his best clutch hits, against lefties this year.

          And he certainly is a much more consistent hitter then Joc is, and they were even going to give Joc a chance to hit lefties, so I don’t think that is necessarily a given.

          Most hitters excell from consistent at bats, it takes a certain breed of player, to be a platoon player, especially if the platoon player, is a right hand hitter.

          1. MJ,

            He barely played this year.

            And I’m just relaying what I think the team and what reality (as he’s only been a platoon player) have shown us thus far.

            It is definitely not a given, although neither is his return from the knee injury.

            I’m certainly pulling for Toles though, he seems to be a great character.

  8. I got Baseball America’s TOP 10 PROSPECTS of the minors today.

    Walker Buehler is on the cover and was named the #1 prospect in the Texas League. They say he projects “at least” as a No. 2 Starter.

    Edwin Rios was the #8 prospect in AA Texas League and was called the “best pure hitter in the Texas League.” His only spot is 1B.

    Alex Verdugo was the #4 prospect in the PCL and was called “one of the most disciplined young batters.” Unlike me, they think he has enough speed to play CF!

    They call Mitch White a “solid No 2 or No 3 with excellent stuff.”

    1. Bluto

      I understand your just being realistic.

      I just hate to see young players, get labeled as platoon players, because I don’t think it is good for a young player, and I am not convinced it is always best, for the team!

      I understand if the team is having a big trouble hitting lefties, like they did last year.

    2. Mark, How does Verdugo compare to Jim Edmonds speedwise? Edmonds wasn’t fast but he seemed to be a good centerfielder.

      1. Jimbo,

        Alex is faster than Jim. Of course , Jim is 47 and Alex is 21. 😉

        I think Alex does not have the speed to play CF, but some scouts do, so there you go.

        I see him in RF or LF!

  9. The Dodgers need a #5 hitter. I too believe both Puig and Pederson will be gone. They need a bat like J.D. Martinez has provided for Arizona; average plus power. Do any of their minor leaguers fit that bill? Do they have something like that in the pipeline or will they be trading for that piece? I would like Yelich in center, Taylor in left, and Toles in right. But Yelich is not quite the 30 HR guy that they need.

    1. The Marlins will be moving high priced contracts not young, cost-controlled players with high upside. Think Stanton and Gordon. Puig makes around $8 million next year, has a WAR above 3 the last I checked, will be winning a GG and is the surest thing they have in the outfield. I find it funny how many people are sure he’s getting traded. Post-seaso performance could weigh heavily in such a decision.

  10. You know if Rios can play first, Bellinger could play any position in the outfield. Also if a good SS comes along, Seager could certainly play third. Taylor can play second. So many different options.

    1. I tend to agree. When/if he sets his mind to it, he’s as talented as they come. Still young, with a good contract. Besides, who would replace him?

        1. Everyone needs to stop with this non-sense that every Cuban is getting dealt to Miami, and every player has a mission to play back in their home state. It’s non-sense. Puig and Mattingly part 2, I don’t think so. If you want Stanton, think McCarthy, Verdugo, Kazmir, and Baez. The Marlins would buy down Stanton’s deal some by taking Kazmir’s money and McCarthy’s money. McCarthy would actually be useful to them. Baez gets a change of scenery, and the Marlins get a young prospect like Verdugo or Alvarez. Stanton can play LF, Puig is much better in RF.

        2. That would be a different story but I still think it would be foolish to trade him. I read today that he’s one of only 5 Dodgers ever to save 15 runs and have an OPS over 800.

  11. It seems like every spring some young player “seizes the day.”

    Who will it be next year:
    Verdugo?
    Rios?
    Ramos?
    Buehler?
    White?
    Locastro?

    Who? I want to know NOW!

  12. https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/keri-the-10-dont-sleep-on-astros-its-miller-time-for-price-and-more-mlb-notes/
    .
    Jonah Keri on why the Dodgers should be optimistic:
    .
    Three simple reasons:
    First, the Dodgers feature the best quartet of starting pitchers among all playoff teams, with Clayton Kershaw backed by Yu Darvish and highly underrated lefties Rich Hill and Alex Wood.
    .
    Second, the Dodgers have addressed their bullpen woes in a more effective manner than we’ve seen in years. Kenley Jansen remains a superelite closer capable of dominating in both the regular season and postseason. But Brandon Morrow, Tony Cingrani, and Luis Avilan lead a revamped batch of setup and middle men who miss tons of bats and perplex opposing hitters with their many different looks.
    .
    Third, the Dodgers trotted out the most potent attack in the National League this year, with slugging rookie Cody Bellinger complementing Corey Seager and Justin Turner in a deep offense that’s even dangerous off the bench.
    .
    And finally, momentum means nothing. Specifically, how a ballclub fares in September has no correlation with how it will fare in October (once you adjust for other variables, such as the overall quality of said teams).
    .
    The Dodgers were an excellent bet to challenge for their first World Series in 29 years before they recently came unglued for a few weeks. They remain excellent bets to do so even after that rough patch.

  13. I don’t think Verdugo is aware TEAM isn’t spelled IEAM…..yet. Potential poison so don’t pen him on the roster until he makes that adjustment.

    1. I don’t think Quasimodo is aware of Alex Verdugo’s personality, skill or potential poison level, so don’t pen posts in which such matters are insinuated.

      1. Bluto

        Thank you for pointing that out!

        But I googled the difference, and it said those two terms were used interchangeably in baseball stats.

        And they are equated the same way too.

        It also said that a hitters OBP, is rarely ever truly the percentage a hitter, has been on base.

        But thanks again, I get your point, but I don’t understand why they had to come up with a new term.

        And I do still hear baseball people use OBA.

  14. Adrian can’t play anymore. I would love it it if he could. He’s a great role model for young Latino kids everywhere. I know that a playing contract can’t be transferred to the front office and I forgot to mention good old Loyd’s of London. I wish I could like Verdugo’s game, I just don’t. If he were to stay on the team and contribute, of course like every hypocritical fan I would support him, but my gut tells me he won’t be in LA. I don’t have a direct pipeline but still know people in the travel team business that tell me he’s as obnoxious as ever. From what I was told, Roberts tore him a new one after he was late to a practice or game.

    1. Gonzo,

      I have a very good friend who know’s Alex’s dad, Joe. This person knows nothing about baseball, but asked me if Alex was “and asshole too?”

      I know that Kapler and other staff are working with him on diet, training and attitude. What you say about him WAS true. I think some of it is LESS true right now. He’s only 21, and now has a girl friend who is supposed to become his wife. Getting away from his dad’s influence is likely a good thing.

      The thing is: his hitting ability is off the charts. He is a true “bat master” and that will get him some grace. Here’s the case that drew everyone’s attention:

      http://www.askcoachwolff.com/2014/06/08/parents-v-coaches-star-hs-pitcher-dictates-coach-playing-time/

      Thw kid was 17 or 18 when it happened. Not all kids have parents like the Seagers or Bellingers, so I give Alex some latitude. I do not think that on any level he will be a bust, but whether he is Tony Gwynn or Chris Gwynn probably lies in his attitude and I can’t predict what will happen. I just know that he is a risk I would take.

      You can also read that his parents did a lot of good:

      http://allsportstucson.com/2017/07/09/support-from-verdugos-parents-nurtured-him-into-top-baseball-prospect-he-is-today/

    1. can they trade him going into an arb year?
      .
      If so, I wouldn’t be surprised. Grandal’s going to get very expensive soon.

      1. They can certainly trade him. That might be a wise decision. Barnes and Farmer for 2018 or get Drew Butera again. 😉

        Grandal and Pederson win a package could be very enticing to some teams.

    1. I’ve seen Locastro play. I know he’s not a “big time” prospect” but he is a very solid player. If he can handle this level he will be a great add to the team.

  15. Tonight’s lineup:
    Granderson-CF
    Seager-SS
    Turner-3B
    Belli-1B
    Puig-RF
    Ethier-LF
    Grandal-C
    Forsythe-2B
    Ryu-P

    Other than the leadoff man I like it.

      1. We will find out. I had wondered that yesterday. I’m torn. I would prefer he start over Ganderson, but don’t want to see his body give out running around that big outfield. I found it interesting listening to Ned talk a couple of nights ago. He was talking like Dre was the starter and Granderson was the backup.

  16. You can add Ryu to the ever-growing list of Baez, Font, McCarthy, Maeda, Ravin, Stewart,and Stripling, to the list of pitchers currently on the 40 man staff that I hope I don’t have to see next year in a Dodgers uniform.

  17. Is anyone surprised that Ryu is getting lit up? His stuff just doesn’t play well at Coors. And coming off an injury doesn’t help.

    1. I’m sure Ryu is thanking Roberts for being the sacrificial Coors field lamb. Subtract his 3 starts there and his numbers are more than good. He’s not the only one. I’ve mentioned before the Derek Lowe would get lit up there every time he threw there no matter how well he was throwing when he got to town. Buehler is getting squeezed.

      1. Ump blows strike then Story hits a HR. I agree with Orel though. Got to be willing to throw curve ball there.

      2. Hawkeye

        This is the second time Ryu has had to take one for the team, and this his his third start there, like you said!

        They have never made Hill pitch even once, in Colorado.

        Baez always pitches better, when we are behind, just like Hatcher!

        1. I was hoping they would play them tough and give Milwaukee a shot. When they only scored 1 after having something going I knew it was over. Kershaw on a limited pitch count tomorrow and MCCarthy leading a bullpen game in Sunday. The bats better wake up.

  18. Since the first time I saw him, I’ve been concerned that Buehler’s fastball is as straight as an arrow. I need to see more movement before I’m convinced. Just hope he doesn’t turn out to be another Josh Ravin. He’s a lot younger, so there’s time.

  19. Is it my imagination, or is Cory Bellinger trying too hard to hit #40? Seems to me that he’s over-swinging a lot.

  20. One run in 7 innings against a nothing pitcher with a +5 ERA and playing in Coors Field should raise a bright red flag. Wait until we face a good pitcher. Yikes.

  21. Here’s the deal – the Dodgers scored 28 runs in 3 games against the Padres that didn’t mean anything.
    Now the Dodgers stink the place up in a game that doesn’t mean anything (to them).
    Indians beat the Chisox 10 – 1 in a game that doesn’t mean anything.
    I am concerned that the Dodgers can’t just “flip the switch”. The 3 games against SD didn’t prove anything. Does the game tonight prove anything? No. But has the “switch been flipped”?
    NO

  22. Hmm. Tanking maybe. Rox Snakes one game play in. Maybe the Dodgers are pushing the Rox in hopes they beat the Snakes.
    Lots of ideas and scenarios can happen.

  23. Very disappointing result.

    This is what I would do now.

    Kershaw goes tonight, and hopefully we can get the one win necessary to secure home field all the way.
    To me, this has become imperative. We are a much better team at Chavez Ravine. Absolute no brainer to ensure that advantage.

    If CK doesn’t get it done tonight then F##k the Bullpen Game on Sunday, throw the ball to Darvish & tell him to get the job done.
    Colorado will have secured the other Wild Card spot & may have a BP game themselves, or at least be in celebratory mood. Darvish won’t pitch before next Saturday (7 days) at the earliest, possibly 9 days if he pitches game 3. He probably would prefer the work anyway.

    I will be absolutely pissed if we don’t do everything we can to secure the #1 seed.

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