That the Dodgers snatched defeat from the jaws of victory is obvious. However, the implosion of the bullpen (Chaggy in particular) is a symptom, not the disease. The symptom manifests itself when the disease is active. The disease is “FailureToScoreRunsItis.” Last night, Dodger hitters left 12 runners stranded (combined). At the trade deadline, FAZ acquired two of the biggest bats on the market in Machado and Dozier. Add in a healthy Justin Turner, a Max Muncy who came out of his slump along with Cody Bellinger, Yasmani Grandal, Matt Kemp, Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig and how in the hell can they only manage to score 2 runs in Coors?
Dozier and Machado were 1-7 at the top of the Dodgers’ lineup. JT was 2-4 as was Puig, who hit a two-run homer for the teams only runs, but he did that from the #7 spot, The heart of the order HAD NO HEART! These guys need to do some soul searching… I look for Rich Hill to struggle with hanging curve balls today in Coors, so the Dodgers better bring their bats.
Pedro Baez, JT Chagois and Scott Alexander are the same pitcher. They all throw hard, but have no idea where the ball will go. That’s why Baez and Chagois are so hittable – they leave them out over the plate for other hitters recreational enjoyment. That’s also why Alexander is not as hittable. He may not know where the ball is going because it moves like crazy, but neither does the hitter. Baez and Chagois should never pitch is a high-leverage situation. High leverage means: “With a lead less than 5 runs.” Actually, both cannot be on the same team. FAZ had better get one a ticket to OKC today.
They said they pulled Ferguson after one inning because he had thrown 28 pitches on Thursday. That’s lame! 10 or 15 more aren’t going to hurt him. I don’t buy what nonsense they are spewing. Caleb only threw 15 pitches, 11 of which were strikes. Let him throw a few more. You know I am not into second-guessing, but it was obvious to me at the time.
Of course, I would have loved to see FAZ pick up a bullpen arm… or three at the trade deadline, but at what cost? I heard from a pretty good source that the Reds asked for Lux and Uceta for Raisel Iglesias. Not happening. Let’s look at some of the other arms available or some other relievers:
- Kelvin Hererra – on the DL. Had a 4.76 ERA with diminished velocity with the Nats since the trade.
- Brandon Morrow – 2nd stint on the DL – Has only pitched 30 innings, but has pitched well.
- Kyle Bear Claw – 22.24 ERA since the All-Star Game
- Brad Ziegler – 9.00 ERA since Arizona acquired him
- Adam Conley – 4.32 ERA since the All-Star Break
- Jake Diekman – 6.00 ERA since Arizona traded for him
- Keone Kela – has pitched 4 innings since the trade with no runs allowed, but the Pirates traded their #9 prospect (LHP Taylor Hearn) for him.
- Brad Brach – Doing well for Atlanta with no runs in 5 innings. The O’s wanted international slot money for him and I doubt FAZ would do that, but I also don’t think he would fit under the LT.
I can go on and on, but the relief pitcher you trade for may not be the one you get, or you could be like the dumbass Nationals who wanted Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle, so they traded Blake Treinen in 2017. One year later, Treinen may be the best closer in the game! He was actually better than the guys he was traded for last year. I wish the Dodgers had better relief pitchers, but I maintain that this team is built for the playoffs (with Ryu and Urias and Cingrani back). The trick is: THEY HAVE TO GET THERE! That’s the hard part.
Good News – Bad News
- Hyun-Jin Ryu will allegedly re-join the Dodgers rotation THIS week. This will likely move Maeda into the Closers role, if the Dodgers can “sell” Kenta on it – probably with the promise of a contract adjustment next year. If Maeda can wrap his head around the closer’s role and embrace it, then that will be a big help. When (IF) Kenley comes back, Kenta can be the 8th innning guy with Alexander.
- Tony Cingrani receive a cortisone injection in his left shoulder on August 3rd. The MRI showed no structural damage. If he’s pain-free, we may see him by the end of the month.
- Dave Roberts is looking pretty dumb right about now. Maybe Andrew Friedman ends up with Joe Maddon. There are rumblings and grumblings coming out of Chicago that he will be let go and Joe Giardi will come home. Maybe Dodger fans get their wish and Maddon comes back and unites with Andrew Friedman.
- Austin Barnes can’t jump out of a boat and hit water. Neither can Will Smith in OKC!
- Striker Buehler is looking Ace-esque!
- I hear that Honey thinks he can help Axford become great again… Wait… he never was great, was he?