Boy, That Was Fun!

NOT!

The Dodgers looked lifeless and disinterested last night for two reasons: 1.  THEY WERE! 2.  IT’S COLORADO!

The game didn’t mean anything as the Dodgers had a 2 game lead over the Indians going into last night game.  Today, they have 102 wins and the Indians have 101.  Kershaw pitches today and I have a sneaking feeling Darvish will pitch Sunday.

Ryu should probably never pitch at Coors again. Even Clayton has difficulty there, but Ryu just should be left in LA when they head to Coors.  Possibly, it’s just the “sidestream smoke” that affected his ability to pitch.  Who knows?

The fact that the Rockies his so well at Coors should not be left out of this equation.  It takes time to learn to pitch at Coors and it also takes time to learn to hit.  Pitches break differently and hitters have to adjust.  It’s much harder for team who just plays a few games there each year to figure that out.  For some reason, it’s harder for the Dodgers.

Charlie Blackman is hitting .276 on the road, but is hitting .388 at Coors Field. Nolan Arenado is hitting .283 on the road and .333 at Coors (but for his career, he is below .260 on the road).  These guys know how to rake in Denver and I’m not blowing smoke.

I thought Buehler looked good, but Coors is an issue for him and Cingrani.  Pedro Baez aka/El Gasolino pitched 1.2 shutout innings.  Incredible.  The Dodgers may have to re-think their playoff rotation after yesterday.  Early in the season, Alex Wood pitched 6 innings of shutout ball at Coors with 10 strikeouts, but that was when his velocity and movement was of the wipeout variety.  He ain’t that guy anymore.  I can see him in the pen or the rotation.  It very well may come down to using 3 starters in the playoffs.  That’s what I would do.  None of them is really overworked.

All the team has to do is win one of the next two games.  I like the odds! I am up at the Indiana Dunes State Park in Michigan City, Indiana on Lake Michigan for the weekend with the wife and my daughter and son-in-law for a little getaway this weekend, but we have wi-fi and I’ve got the game.

  • I know that the Dodgers are considering Tim Locastro for the playoff Roster, but when it comes right down to it, I can’t see him making it.  There are other, more-pressing needs.
  • I don’t know why so many fans think Kyle Farmer will make the playoff roster.  I guess I could be wrong, but I don’t see it.
  • Chris Taylor will be back today.

 

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 26 Comments

  1. 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.

    1. Watford

      At least if we tie for the record, we will have the home field advantage, since we won our series, against the Indians.

    2. Yet, Joe and Orel last night and Mark today said that the game meant nothing. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Indians win out and the Dodgers lose out with the attitude that the games mean nothing. And somehow CK is going to win it for us today tho he will be pitching only about half the game.

  2. Dodgers going into the playoffs better forget about getting fastballs to hit. They’re gonna get balls coming at them sideways upside down corkscrewing dropping like a rock but few fastballs. Unless they can somehow prove they can handle the junky stuff which sure hasn’t happened yet this season. Without good pitching it’s gonna be tough, real tough for the Dodgers to win. HFA is a plus. Coors field, what a pit of horrors. Looks like a tossup between Snakes and Rox. Both scare the hell out of me. Be nice to win these last 2 games for a shot of mojo going into the playoffs. That or maybe hire a voodoo witch doctor to slope the playing field the Dodgers way.

  3. It doesn’t seem that the Dodgers have played either the Rox or the Snakes particularly good. I think they pose more problems than either the Cubs or the Nationals. The NL Pennant will come out of the Western Division. Last night was a shambles and if it is true that the Dodgers were flat then what’s up with that? They are playing for HFA and it should mean a lot to them.

    I really like Wood, always have but my confidence in him has really been shaken as a starter. He was unhittable earlier in the season. I think he would be better out of the bullpen. They need to win 11 so this is where Kershaw, Darvish and Hill need to throw blanks and really shine.

    The offense is very good when it is firing on all cylinders but it hasn’t been doing that with any consistency for some time now which makes me wonder what team this is…the 43-7 team or the team of September. I really want this to be the year to win it all but now it looks like its anyone’s to take. Both Cleveland and Houston look good. Verlander… he looks like a stud again. Who would have known. One can never quite account for the human factor involved in baseball.

  4. Arenado is .266 career on the road and has been pretty good on the road the last two years, but no doubt all of their players are better at home. However, it doesn’t explain the Dodgers lack of hitting. I’m a bit tired of the excuses. They aren’t playing for anything, Cody’s tired, Corey’s elbow hurts, Taylor is tired. Time to suck it up.

    1. Prior to the off day Thursday the team had played 30 games in 30 days in heat and humidity so yes some were probably tired. Not counting tonight the team has played 17 of 34 against teams in the playoff hunt and 18 out of 31 on the road. Taylor has never played this much before, Cody seems to be pressing to get his 40th HR and to 100 RBI’s, JT and Seager are a little nicked up and Puig is trying to stay out of the doghouse. All teams have some drama and this is not an excuse, more an explanation. But it’s time to step up like they mean it! Kershaw needs to bring his playoff A game to make a statement and the Dodger bats need to make Marquez pay. Milwaukee plays early and if the Rocks have already clinched they may not care as much either tonight.

    2. Hawkeye

      I know Cody hasn’t hit since the beginning of the Padres series, but having Granderson and Forsythe in this line up, is ridiculous.

      Look at their numbers against righties, and their overall numbers.

      Granderson is not only not hitting for a decent batting average, ,but all the rest of his numbers, like slugging and OPS are not good either, if you look at his numbers, since he joined this team, and he is hitting 150 something, overall.

      Forsythe’s numbers are not good against righties, and his overall numbers, are almost as bad, as Granderson’s numbers.

      Forsythe has a good OBP, but his batting average, his slugging, and his OPS is not good at all against righties, or overall!

      The thing that upsets me the most, is what these guys do with the players, they pick up at the trade deadline, or later.

      They are acting like Granderson is a superstar player, but he is far from a superstar player, and he should not be hitting at the top of the order, or even fifth.

      And Forsythe shouldn’t be playing against righties!

      1. You know how I feel about Granderson. I was the least thrilled guy on this board when they acquired him. The Dodgers are willing to take a bunch of K’s and ground outs into the shift hoping he will run into one at an opportune moment. Ned thinks he’s a reserve, I have no idea if that’s true. I think he’s starting in LF though. It better be no higher than 6-8 in the order if so. I’m not sold on Verdugo but at least the kid is going to put the bat on the ball and go the other way at times. If they play Andre two days in a row that may give us some hope.

        As for Forsythe, he’s the least of their problems. He may not play against righties come playoff time. If Chase plays and hits we will all be happy that Doc played Forsythe enough to keep Chase from wearing out. If Chase doesn’t hit, we will all be upset that Barnes wasn’t in the lineup. That’s the nature of us fans. I for one think Barnes needs to be on the field somewhere even though my brain tells me he won’t be unless we see Yasmani go into this usual playoff fade.

        Last year the Dodgers played the final week like it was spring training and it didn’t hurt them come playoff time. They have played a month this way and I’m concerned about the bats. It will be interesting to see if Barnes catches tonight for Kershaw. Odds are game 1 will be against a tough lefty (Ray). If Barnes is going to play against lefties then he needs to be on the same page as Kershaw.

        1. Hawkeye

          That pass ball that Grandal had yesterday, might make that happen, especially since it cost us a run, and it moved runners over, so they could score more easily.

          About Granderson, it is to late now!

          I just wish the front office, would have just admitted the deal didn’t work out, and gave another player a chance, to help the team.

          I didn’t enjoy the game yesterday, but I didn’t worry to much about it, either.

          The only thing I am concerned about in the post season, is our middle relief, who will come in, in the sixth, and seventh innings.

          And I worry about getting hits, when runners are in scoring position.

          Because the Nats and the Astros, not only have players, with good OPSes, there players also, have good batting averages, so these teams, have better team batting averages.

          So they have players, that hit in runs, when there are runners, in scoring position.

          It does look like Cody is trying to do to much lately, or maybe he is having to adjust right now.

          Do you think they will put Baez, on the post season roster?

          1. They got Granderson for those Oct. matchups so for them they can’t make that call yet. This largely on Joc too.

            Looked like the pass ball last night was a cross up on signals.

  5. I get that the Rox had “something to play for” (to lock in the 2nd wildcard) and in theory, the Dodgers didn’t but really, there was no excuse for last night.

    Isn’t Ryu “playing for” a spot on the postseason roster?
    Didn’t the Rockies’ pitcher (Bettis) pitch in the same high altitude as Ryu?
    In theory, isn’t Ryu supposed to be a better pitcher than Bettis?
    When the Dodgers play in Coors, don’t their hitters get the same advantage of playing at high altitude as the Rox?
    Aren’t the Dodgers playing for home field advantage in the event that they get to the Series?
    Aren’t they supposed to be getting sharp for the postseason?

    Didn’t the Dodgers “flip the switch”? When they pulverized the Padres, didn’t that prove that they were ready?

    1. The game was over when Ryu could not get through the Rockies order cleanly. It looked like they owned him and he has no business pitching against the DBacks either. It looked like the whole team was flat and gave up early. Wood should start game 4 in either Coors or Chase unless they are down 2 games to 1.

      1. Vegas

        Hill wouldn’t pitch well, in Colorado either!

        And he hasn’t even pitched once in Colorado this year, and that was the third time that Ryu had to pitch in Colorado, this year.

        Also Hill didn’t pitch well against the Dbacks, in Arizona either.

        But Hill, Ryu, and even Maeda, pitched pretty well, in that second series when we faced the Dbacks, at Dodger stadium.

        And even if Ryu didn’t say his hand or arm was bothering him, his hand must of still been sore, because it wasn’t to long ago, that he had that batted ball, hit him.

        1. MJ
          I think they pitch Hill at home either way and have Darvish pitch on the road. I know it’s Coors but Ryu showed little and was hit hard. Roberts has to make some tough decisions and it looks like they are leaning towards 11 pitchers if they are going to carry a pinch runner. Those 11 have to be the very best they have for the match ups in the NLDS.

          1. Vegas

            I just hate that Ryu has had to pitch so much in Colorado, this year.

            I guess I was more just standing up for Ryu, then trying to make a case, to have Ryu pitch against either of these teams, especially outside of Dodger stadium.

    2. Hawkeye

      I think everything you said is all true!

      I remember at the time, I thought we might regret not going for JD, if Puig and Joc didn’t hit.

      I didn’t think the Dbacks had the prospects to get JD, but the Dbacks didn’t end up giving up that much, from what baseball people have said.

      Can you imagine how good our line up would be if JD was protecting Cody, in our line right now?

      I wouldn’t be so sure that that, was a cross up, and that is only because Orel has insinuated a few times, that Grandal has forgot what pitch he called for.

      And I am not one of those people, that bash Grandal all the time.

      1. Grandal may have forgot. Kind of a cross up but his fault. Darvish is going game 3. He had a mound session in Denver today.

        Today’s lineup:
        Taylor-cf
        Seager-ss
        JT-3B
        Belly-1B
        Barnes-C
        Granderson-LF
        Puig-RF
        Utley-2B
        Kershaw-p

        1. Cards beat the Brewers 7 to 6 clinching the last wild card spot for Colorado. They can now celebrate a little and may not go 100% tonight, we shall see.

        2. Hawkeye

          Did you see Puig hit that out to the right side, again?

          And Puig has more power to the right side when he is right!

          And I sure hope he is right in the post season!

  6. Well I read posters saying that ryu and hill can’t pitch in Colorado or Arizona add kershaw to the list. Kershaw in past years has been truly dominate in the regular season but still struggled in the postseason. This year not so dominate with home run after home run. Era looks good but strikeouts per 9 innings down and even in his last couple of wins lots of hits. If he is not still hurting and I assume he is not or he wouldn’t be pitching then he hasn’t been sharp since the dl stint. Somebody has to pitch in Colorado or Arizona so we better win at home or darvish better deliver. I hope I am wrong but I just don’t think kershaw is right so I don’t expect him to dominate. Hopefully he has it but he does not inspire confidence in the past few weeks. I know all the excuses but that is just what they are. If kershaw is truly the great that I read about he will not take games off so he is maximum effort tonight. Nothing personal he just needs to deliver. With our shaky offense our pitchers will have to be dominate. You say this team won over 100 games but the advantage we had over a long season with our depth will not mean as much in a short series. Here’s hoping October 6 we are clicking but I know hope is not a strategy.

  7. Interesting article about the Friedman front office and this coming off season:
    http://www.latimes.com/sports/mlb/la-sp-baseball-shaikin-20170930-story.html

    Interesting excerpt:
    ““To this date, it’s wildly successful,” Friedman said. “I’m a believer in steps. … There is a regular-season goal, which I think we have certainly accomplished, and the ultimate goal, for which we still have our work in front of us.”

    If the Dodgers do not achieve the ultimate goal yet again, they might need to evaluate the process for getting there.

    In “Moneyball,” A’s general manager Billy Beane famously said, “My [crap] doesn’t work in the playoffs.” The best teams reveal themselves over 162 games, Beane believed, but a postseason series is too short and the decisive events are too random for a front office to exert any sense of control.

    That theory informs the Dodgers’ strategy, with resources that dwarf those available to the A’s and just about every other team.”

  8. Good points Rick as always but you know what?
    To win 5 West titles in a row and at least put yourself in position to challenge for a WS is impressive in its own right., and to be fair, I think most of us fans would be surprised if we don’t continue to visit the postseason going forward if you look at the nucleus of the team & what we have in the pipeline.

    Beane is correct about the random nature of a short series in the Playoffs of course, but I think that this season, unlike the previous ones under their stewardship, they really believe they can win it all, and went for it st the TD.
    Others years t think they didn’t want to give up the top prospects needed to secure top players, this year I think they believe.

    To have the best record in Baseball after 103 games means that their model can’t be too far away considering the Farm is still very strong.

    Really excited now, and can’t wait for Friday to come around.

  9. The excuse for Clayton was they delayed the game for 20 minutes and it upset his routine. Another game somewhere along the line somebody upset his routine and he fell apart. Can’t remember exactly but it happened. The dodgers knowing give him extra days and it usually does not bode well. He says he feels great and is ready to go. If he is dominant kershaw the dodgers will be off to a great start. If somebody messes with his routine well…

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