The Dodgers were ranked #14 in Organizational Ratings in 2014. In 2015, Andrew Friedman was hired and they climbed to #3 and in 2016 they were #1. Now, they are rated #4 by BA. Of course, the FAZ-O-PHOBES will try and say that Colletti’s Front Office was largely responsible and that Friedman did not deserve the credit and then they say “Look, they traded away 4 pitchers and are now #4. Friedman is an idiot!” In the interest of keeping you from being branded a dummy if you believe that, I would like to point out a few things:
- 22 of the Top 30 Dodgers Prospects were acquired by Friedman;
- The Dodgers had more rookies come to the majors in 2016 than any other team;
- When a farm system is loaded, you are forced to trade some prospects for players who can help now: Hill and Forsythe. Four PROSPECTS netted the Dodgers those two players;
- When the Cubs graduated all of their players in 2016, they went from the #1 Organization to #20;
- When the Dodgers graduated all of their players in 2016, they dropped from #1 to #4 EVEN AFTER TRADING AWAY FOUR TOP PROSPECTS;
- The Dodgers currently have 10 or 11 starters, what do you want – 14 or 15?
- At some point you have to move some arms and BTW, we will see what they all become, won’t we?
- Will the Dodgers keep signing old, injury-prone pitchers? If it makes sense, hell yes! However, most of those were just bridges to the youngsters. My 8 year-old granddaughter gets the concept, but some 60 and 70 year-old Dodger fans can’t grasp it!
Some people ask if the Dodgers will ever spend big money of free agents. I must respectfully say that is one of the dumbest things I have ever heard. Why wouldn’t they? They have the deepest pockets and they have the largest payroll. Two of their top highest paid players are making over $60 million (Ethier and Gonzo) and last year they accounted for less than 2.0 WAR. So, when that $60 mil drops off the books, they can invest it in real producing assets instead of two “over-the-hill” players and I do not mean to be disrespectful to Andre or Adrian but both are on the decline.
Yesterday, one of you sent me some quotes from another websiteand asked what I thought.I won’t publish the quotes, but thanks for thinking about me anyway. It’s the thought that counts! I probably know who wrote each one. So predictable and so myopic. When I read it, it sounded like the Dodgers went 62-100 last year and are picked for the cellar again this year and their farm system is ranked 30th. Circular fiction. It makes me feel sad that people are so miserable, but I have moved on and don’t look back. I wish them all nothing but the best.
Rants & Raves
- Richard Justice of MLB.comis effusive in his praise of the Dodgers. He’s also one of my favorite MLB writers.. not just because he wrote good things about the Dodgers.
- Cary Osborne of Dodger Insiderwrote about Brandon McCarthy’s progress. It really good!
- Dodgers 1B Ike Davis has left camp to join Team Israel for the WBC. Rob Segedin will leave to join the Italian team on Sunday, while Enrique Hernandez (Puerto Rico), Sergio Romo (Mexico), Alex Verdugo (Mexico) and Adrian Gonzalez (Mexico) all will leave next Monday.
- Kazmir will likely start Wednesday. Ryu is close too!
ESPN INSIDER picks Julio Urias as a Breakout Player for 2017:
The Dodgers have been very careful with Urias, limiting him to just over 120 innings last season in the minor and major leagues combined. This year, they are expected to increase his innings to the 150-160 range without a definitive cap and keep an open mind for the postseason, as they did last year. Urias got off to a slow start in 2016, going 1-2 with a 4.95 ERA in his first eight starts. However, he put it all together in the second half and ended up 4-0 with a 1.99 ERA in his last 10 appearances (seven starts). Urias’ mid-90s fastball has great movement, and he throws his slider, curveball and changeup almost as often, with the ability to add and subtract velocity on all of them. He has one of the best pickoff moves in baseball and is a tremendous fielding pitcher with really quick feet, hands and wrists. He should be the one pitching Game 2 of the playoffs after Clayton Kershaw come October.
It is Still Early
On the way home tonight, I was listening to MLB. Radio and Mark Melancon was on. Other than the fact he is a Giant, he seems like a remarkable human being. He was talking about how all pitchers are different – some just want to work on one thing. Others are just trying to develop a pitch or establish a pitch. He warned not to read too much into anything good… or bad early in Spring Training. He’s 100% right. Most guys can’t do what Kershaw can do. Just because Josh Fields has a 108.00 ERA does not mean a thing this early.