104-58 and Some Fans Are Still Unhappy!

The Dodgers just completed the best season in the LA Dodgers history and some fans are still unhappy! I am convinced that if the Dodgers win the World Series and don’t sweep everyone, everygame, some fans will say “Yeah, but they did it the hard way – they should have won 11 games in a row.  FAZ should be fired!”  

The Dodgers just took two out of three from the Rockies and people still complain. What I am about to tell you falls into the “Watch and Learn” Department:

How the Dodgers hit and pitched in the last 35 games of the season is not how they will play in the playoffs.  Some of what they have been doing is to confound the advance    scouts who have been in abundance at the Dodgers games.  After the Dodgers got the huge lead, they altered their game plans, which is very smart.  Others teams won’t expect what is coming in the playoffs.  Watch and Learn.

How do I know this?  I know.   FAZ is smart – we all know that.  But they are smarter than you and I can imagine. It is not out of the realm of probablility that they are deliberately blowing smoke to obfuscate what they intend to do in the playoffs.

My Final Guess at Playoff Roster

  1. Kershaw
  2. Hill
  3. Darvish
  4. Wood
  5. Jansen
  6. Morrow
  7. Maeda
  8. Fields
  9. Cingrani
  10. Watson
  11. Baez
  12. Stripling
  13. Grandal
  14. Barnes
  15. Bellinger
  16. Forsythe
  17. Utley
  18. Seager
  19. Turner
  20. Granderson
  21. Hernandez
  22. Taylor
  23. Puig
  24. Ethier
  25. Pederson

I put Joc in.  I hope it’s not a mistake.  On the starters: Kershaw is #1, Hill is #2 and Darvish is #3 because he can likley pitch better at Arizona or Colorado.  At least that is what the theory is.

I just spent a great weekend in Michigan City, Indiana at Indiana Dunes and the Beach with my wife and daughter and son-in-law, but managed to watch all the Dodger games:

 

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 21 Comments

  1. I have to agree with your 25 man playoff roster. I like Wood starting game 4. Hopefully Baez is used in lower leverage situations and Stripling gives them more middle inning coverage. The extra bat of Farmer or legs of LoCastro are less valuable than Stripling and keeping Kershaw fresh is a good strategy for a deep run. I would think Darvish and Wood match up very well with any teams 3 and 4.

    I have harped on how difficult their Sept schedule was with only 2 off days, most games on the road and facing better teams in the playoff hunt for half their games. These 4 days of rest will be huge for a team that played their ass off most of the year. Here’s hoping they flip the switch on Fri!

    As well as Az has played I actually would rather play them than the Rockies. Coors field is such a wild card and their lineup is deadly. Our pitchers have fared better against Az, but they do have a deeper staff of starters. The Dodgers have a better bullpen than either one. I doubt there will be a sweep either way, this will be a stiff test. I would rather see the Cubs take out the Nats from a match up standpoint but they each present their own set of problems. As a fan I just root one game at a time and if the Dodgers play their best they will do just fine.

    1. Vegas – firstly, really shocked & saddened to hear the news from your part of the world today.

      Secondly, have thought about this, and I would rather face the Rox, as to your point, AZ has stronger Pitching & of course Goldy!!

      I agree that it would be good if The Cubs sorted The Nats,
      although I read that Scherzer tweaked his Hammy last night, which could be game changing.
      Good to see Doc planning to use Hill in game 2. Makes sense.

      1. Thanks for the kind words Watford. The whole city is a bit numb but we are coping with it. Thank goodness my family and friends and coworkers were not affected, at least directly.

        1. Glad you’re ok. Crazy stuff that’s hard to believe. I used to go to Vegas quite a bit back in the day. I got married at Lake Las Vegas.

  2. I am hoping for the Dodgers to only need 3 starters in the best of 5 series, by sweeping and then getting to rest while waiting for our next victim!!

      1. Watson and Cingrani can both be good weapons out of the pen. Too bad for Avilan but I have never been really high on him.

  3. With Wood pitching out of the pen for games 1 and 2 I don’t see both Stripling and Baez. I think one makes it and then they carry either Farmer or Locastro.

  4. Dodgers looked like they got some of their mojo back. And the proof is still in the proverbial pudding. Certainly not gonna go out and plunk a bunch of money on em. If nothing else good happens for them it’s still been a fun and interesting season for Dodger baseball, as always. Toss up between Rox and Snakes in a 1 game playoff. Think the Snakes have better pitching so I guess I hope the Rox win. Cubs had a pretty good 2nd half. Whatever happens the Dodgers are gonna have to play some great baseball to get where we all want them to go. Go Dodgers.

  5. Kershaw, Hill, Darvish and Jansen are the pitchers who MUST Carry the load.

    Taylor, Seager, Bellinger and Turner are the hitters who have to lead the way.

    Then, a couple more have to step up and they will be good!

  6. As I was preparing my post for tomorrow, I came up with the same 25 man roster prediction that Mark did. I toyed with the idea of substituting Farmer for Stripling or Baez, but I believe that Dodger management favors more flexibility in pitching than having a 3rd catcher who has no real experience with any of the LAD pitchers. I assume he will travel with the team and be there if an emergency arises. IMO, Buehler is not ready, McCarthy is not healthy, and Ryu cannot pitch in Arizona or Colorado where he would start as a #4. He also is not the type of multiple game reliever that Doc may need. It is possible that with having 8 relievers that Ryu could become a LH long reliever, but that would mean losing Stripling. So it becomes a choice of Stripling or Ryu, and I feel more comfortable that Stripling can go (and has gone) multiple games in the playoffs. Again, more flexibility with the pitching.
    .
    I also went with Joc instead of Farmer because Joc can be a late inning defensive replacement, and both the DBacks and Rockies are RHP dominant. That may change if the Dodgers face the Cubs in the NLCS with Lester and Quintana.
    .
    I have no favorite in the DBacks or Rockies. Both have their pitfalls. The DBacks have the pitching, but are not as good offensively against LHP which favors the Dodgers. Kershaw and Hill are both excellent at Dodger Stadium, and that should give them the edge in those two games. I would just make sure that JD Martinez cannot beat them. Grienke should pitch Game 3 in Arizona against Darvish, and Wood would pitch Game 4 (if necessary) and does not have the problems Hill, Ryu, or Maeda have in Arizona, leaving Kershaw for Game 5 in LA.
    .
    The Rockies are STRONG offensively but are not as good offensively away from Coors Field. With Kershaw and Hill starting in Dodger Stadium, it should be advantage LA. I agree playing in Denver will be a problem. That is a distinct advantage for the Rockies, but unless Jon Gray can come back for Game 3, the Rockies will be going with their #4 against Darvish. I like those odds.
    .
    The Dodgers will need CT3, Corey, JT, and Cody to be productive. Those 4 were the catalysts for the big winning streaks. Puig is becoming more consistent, and hopefully the streakiness will be positive for both Grandy and Grandal. Just get good defense out of 2B and an occasional timely hit, and the offense should be solid (as it has been for 8 out of the last 10 games). Unless there is another Matt Stairs, or failure to cover third on a shift, or a Daniel Murphy clone going crazy, the Dodgers have the better team, and should beat either the DBacks or Rockies.

    1. AC

      I was doing a response on what you said about Baez, but then Mark closed that thread.

      I really wanted to know your thoughts about Baez, because I value your opinion, and I feel you always try to be fair, and open minded, when it comes to what is best for the team!

      And I actually meant to ask you that, before you gave your response, so thank you!

      But how does a pitcher who only pitches 7 innings, give up 6 hits, walk 4 batters, hit another batter, and give up a HR, and 6 runs?

      And why would the Dodgers even think about putting a pitcher like this, on the post season roster?

      I think just because Baez pitched well in a couple of games, that meant nothing, that means nothing, and it doesn’t cure the problem he has with his confidence,, or his lack of confidence, with his pitches.

      If I was the Dodgers I would insist that Baez sees a sports psychologist in the off season, and I would not put him on this post season roster!

      Every pitch in the post season means way to much, and one pitch can change the momentum of a game, or even a series.

      And this is exactly what will probably be on Baez’s mind, right before he throws each pitch!

      1. I’m with you MJ. A couple of decent outings in mop up time means nothing to me. He was lucky to get away with a leadoff triple as well. I think Farmer is on.

      2. MJ, I am not a Baez fan, and have never been. The closest I have ever come to making negative comments about a specific player was Pedro Baez. But the list was a prediction as to what I thought the Dodgers would do. I cannot speak for Mark or others and how they prepared their specific lists. And I know that Dodger management (both front office and field) like Pedro Baez. It does not matter if any of us like him or not. Cingrani will probably be considered as a loogy, giving more credence to 8 pitchers. So if they go with 8 pitchers, Baez is on the roster. There will be non high leverage pitching situations, and Baez is viable in that role. Why waste a Fields, or Morrow, or Watson in that role.
        .
        Management has stated very clearly that Kershaw will pitch Game 1 AND NOT Game 4 on short rest. They could get by last year with 7 relievers in a five game series with the plan that Kershaw would go on short rest. They went with 8 relievers in the 7 game NLCS last year. So I went with 8 pitchers.
        .
        Farmer adds nothing, just as adding Barnes last year to the NLDS added nothing. Barnes struck out in his one playoff PA, and pinch ran in Game 5. He was not on the NLCS roster, LAD preferring the additional pitcher. IMO Farmer will travel with the team as a “just in case” emergency, but not be added to the roster. Having the 8th pitcher gives the Dodgers flexibility where Doc likes to use it. The one reason Farmer may be added is because of the number of LH relievers that both the DBacks and Rockies have. But he will not be considered as a catcher just as Barnes was not last year.

        1. A longer series dictates more relief pitchers. It’s playoff time, there is no wasting anyone. Every out matters.

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