Here’s How I Would Fix the Dodgers

  1. It’s time to see what Kike Hernandez can do as a regular – put him at 3B until JT comes back.
  2. Pederson goes to CF.
  3. Muncy and Valera go back to OKC. Too many weak bats.
  4. Hudson goes back to OKC and Cingrani goes on the DL.

The team is under siege and decisive action is required. Things have to change and they have to change now! Puig will be back.  Turner will be back, Hill will be back, Alexander will be back (he is pitching well at OKC), Koehler will likely be back as will Ryu and Urias and Forsythe will be back. Oh, yeah, Kershaw may be back. But, that is not TODAY!

Here’s my lineup:

  1. Taylor  SS
  2. Verdugo  RF
  3. Bellinger 1B
  4. Kemp  LF
  5. Pederson CF
  6. Grandal  C
  7. Hernandez  3B
  8. Utley/Locastro  2B

Bench:  Henry Ramos (a spot on the 40-man has to be opened), Austin Barnes, Kyle Farmer

Starters:  Buehler, Wood, Maeda, Hill, Stripling

Pen: Baez, Chargois, Garcia, Fields, Parades, Stewart, Liberatore,  Jansen

Run that lineup out every day for two weeks and see what happens. Brock Stewart will be a lockdown reliever if allowed to settle in there.

Memo to Doc:  Quit tinkering right now.  Just do what I outlined and threaten Turner Ward with bodily harm if the hitting doesn’t improve.  This is stupid! I’m done.

This article has 34 Comments

  1. “You are what your record says you are.” Bill Parcells
    MT, you were right on with that quote. How ever many of us would like to deny it, we are only as good as our record. We are without Seager, Turner, Puig, Forsythe, and now Kershaw and Ryu. Our line-up today was comprised of bandages and crazy glue. I don’t expect us to contend this year and, for the most part, I’m OK with that. I don’t want us to make any stupid trades just for the sake of making trades. I feel your pain, AC. It’s beyond disappointing, but it is what it is.
    *
    P.S. – Nothing personal, Mark, but I think your new line-up sucks.

    1. That line-up may suck, but it may also be the best line-up we can put on the field right now

  2. Mark, you are almost right and I don’t know where it is that you are wrong. Your plan is as good as any and better than what is happening now.
    .
    I am regaining my skepticism for Verdugo. He keeps failing with runners on base and especially in scoring position. He needs more time at AAA. Toles is more readier (yes, that is a Badgerism, sorry about that).
    .
    Let’s see what Stewart does with his start. Whether it is Stripling or Stewart in the rotation, it is interesting that the Dodgers will go with 3 righties instead of 4 lefties. That is quite the change.
    .
    Taylor is heating up but his OBP continues to be below the ideal OBP for any of the first 3 spots in the lineup.
    .
    Kemp continues to be the clutchiest hitter on the team.
    .
    My crazy move would put Puig at third until Turner returns or trade for Machado.

  3. Mark
    I agree with your players and letting them play every day and see what happens, but Roberts doesn’t manage that way so we can forget the idea.
    If it did happen I would ( my opinion ) make a few changes in the batting order.
    Locastro 2b want to see what he can do as the leadoff hitter and what he can do on base.
    Verdugo rf
    Taylor ss
    Bellinger 1b
    Kemp lf
    Pederson cf
    Grandal c
    Hernandez 3b
    Like to see these players just play and have a chance to get at least 3 at-bats every day, might surprise Roberts.

    1. I think Kemp is curently the Dodgers best hitter and as such should hit 2nd or 3rd. His speed (IMHO) puts him at 3rd.

      I would also tell the rest of the team:DO WHAT OLD MAN KEMP IS DOING!

      He is taking what they give him. He blasts out grooved pitches and goes with the flow on the rest. Take notes, young whippersnappers!

  4. Here is the lineup (and batting order) I would love for after the all star break — a group that can do some damage:

    1. Toles /Verdugo
    2. Kiké / Utley
    3. Turner
    4. Bellinger
    5. Kemp
    6. Taylor
    7. Puig
    8. Grandal/Barnes
    9. Pitcher

    I would also bat Barnes leadoff (OBP .406) — if he keeps that up.

    PS: anyone else think we may get a weird silver-lining out of Kershaw going down: the market may be “don’t touch him” given DL time in 4 of the last 5 years) — so maybe we get to keep him for 2 more years.

  5. Matt Kemp is currently the Dodgers best player. He needs to hit higher in the lineup. I don’t know if he can continue it, but what a story if he does: From the outhouse to the penthouse. There can be redemption…

    1. I was looking for Bellinger sandwiched between two righties so we go righty / lefty / righty — but I guess that still works if we move Kemp up in the order. I think it (Batting order) depends on whether or not Bellinger starts mashing — I think he might!

  6. I think FAZ can hardly claim credit for Kemp’s welcomed contribution. Brilliant financial move but I doubt they never suspected Kemp would be one of the few guys working the shovel trying to dig this team out of the big hole. They must be pretty happy to have him right about now. A team leader. Wow.

  7. I just realized there is no game tonight. I wonder what I’ll do for aggravation.

    1. I was looking at the schedule and I just realized the Cincinnati reds are still a thing. who knew?

  8. to help keep myself sane [I have a big deal closing tomorrow], I’ve been working on my up-to-the-minute highly-subjective prospect rankings. this is nothing other than how I personally rate our prospects right now (not necessarily by trade value but by likely future production).

    1. buehler
    2. Verdugo
    3. ruiz
    4. Santana
    5. diaz
    6. smith
    7. white
    8. peters
    9. may
    10. wong
    11. kendall
    12. alvarez
    13. lux
    14. ferguson
    15. [tie] c. Santana/Heredia

    honorable mention:

    cooper/rios/Sheffield/Abdullah/marinan/Estevez

    sleeper:

    bannon

    *i’m really pleased with how hard it is to get all our best prospects in the top ten. there were years in the past kendall & alvarez would be in the top five.

      1. I think you’re right. it’s hard to compare pitchers and position players. I hope ferguson continues to prove everyone wrong.

  9. Unlike other blogs, I think people here actually work. The only explanation I can think of for no comments in so long.

  10. MT:

    This guy Kemp can hit – no doubt about that.
    It is rather telling though that he is the best hitter on the team!
    Injuries only mask the real issue – these guys struggle to put the bat on the ball, and Roberts isn’t helping with his musical chair lineup. When they all play (2017) they hit enough to win, remove a few by injury and it’s a different story except of course MK.

    1. Well, Corey is gone for the year and JT is still out, so he’s it. Cody will get better and Taylor will come back (is coming back), but yep, Old Man Kemp is the guy… and I never used to like him.

      If he had just a few more at bats he would be leading the league in hitting! That’s tremendous.

  11. at first I thought it was just the offense. but then the bullpen imploded and the starting pitchers starting dropping like flies. I think we can survive losing corey–it’s a big blow but we had everything working for us last year and still lost so there are no sure things. if we somehow get Kershaw back I think we’re still in this thing. I think we can safely chalk up this entire first month and a half to “world series” hangover. well, it’s time to sober up and realize we just need to catch the 2nd wild card team and not the entire league. it won’t be easy but it can be done. there is no team in the NL that is head and shoulders above us and bad luck will even its way out across the league. I don’t mind giving all these prospects and journeymen their cups of coffee–if even a couple of them stick we will be better off for it.

      1. uh, I think there’s a key difference there

        also, if we had won I couldn’t care less if we lost 150 games this year

  12. Yesterday’s loss was an absolute embarrassment, and I penned a rather scathing indictment on the team’s management and play. I feel better, but no team with aspirations for a trip to the WS should play as uninspired and poorly as they have for many (most) of their first 34 games. The “good” news is that the season is still young enough to get back into it. How they do it is another story. Mark’s 25 man is as good as any.
    .
    There is no impending trade for Manny Machado. They got under the luxury tax cap for a reason, and FAZ is not going to jeopardize that on a hope and a prayer that Machado can get them to the WS and win it. FAZ and Machado can talk in November if there is mutual interest. There is no impending trade for a front line starting pitcher. There is no impending trade for a back end high leverage reliever. The Dodgers are going to have to do it with what they have. There are no more potential difference makers or surprises at OKC. The top two prospects are currently on the 25 man, and the remainder of the top 30 are at AA or below. Matt Beaty and Edwin Rios are still not on any roster, but neither are considered close to the MLB level.
    .
    MLB – Tim Locastro, Kyle Farmer, CT3, Kike’ Hernandez, Max Muncy. AAA – Jake Peter, Donovan Solano, Mike Ahmed. AA – Drew Jackson, Connor Joe, Angelo Mora, and more lately Errol Robinson. These are all utility players that are playing a lot. Those players help with depth, but they are utility players for a reason. These are not potential Harper’s or Machado’s. There is no potential DJ LeMahieu, or AJ Pollock, or Marcell Ozuna, or Christian Yelich, or Nolan Arenado, or Jose Altuve, or Paul Goldschmidt, etc., etc., etc. There are no JT’s, or Seager’s or Bellinger’s, or Kemp’s. The utility players are good athletes who can competently and competitively play all over the field, but are not stars. The closest the Dodgers have to a star in that group is CT3.
    .
    The team OKC trotted out today was filled with the 26th man types on a roster. Today’s lineup…Jake Peter, Donovan Solano, Rob Segedin, Henry Ramos, Travis Taijeron, Danny Espinosa, Rocky Gale, Mike Ahmed, and Tyler Pill. Henry Ramos would be the closest to being helpful at the 25 man level. These guys are organizational depth and are helpful to have so that those down below can better develop, and they are necessary. But not a team full of them. Why is Kyle Garlick and Logan Landon at OKC while Yusniel Diaz is at Tulsa? Why was Danny Espinosa signed when Errol Robinson could have been pushed to AAA, and Gavin Lux could get the promotion he deserves to AA? Dennis Santana and Mitchell White are certainly capable of pitching at AAA, and probably Caleb Ferguson. All three do not need to go to AAA, but at least 1 should be there while Stewart is with the LA Dodgers 25 man. What good does it do the organization to continue to pitch Guillermo Moscoso or Tyler Pill at AAA with three capable pitchers at AA? The Dodgers need relievers. Why is Josh Sborz and Shea Spitzbarth both at AA? The closer for OKC is 32 year old Brian Schlitter. He is doing great, but he is not a prospect, and he should not be considered for a high leverage relief role with a contending team. That is why he is 32 and in MiLB.
    .
    I recognize that I do not have all of the information available, and that I am not nearly as knowledgeable with the players’ capabilities. But I have been around minor league baseball enough to see how some players are pushed and how some are fillers. I am partial to 26th man organizational depth fillers, but not a team of them.
    .
    Let’s see where they are at the end of May and then again at the end of June. The game is played on the field, and maybe someone (JT?) can spark some life into these guys and they can climb back into it. If not then it is onto to 2019 and sell off what they can in July. But please, no more utility players.

    1. Good to see you’re feeling better about things, AC :0)
      *
      Are you, or anyone else on this board, losing any faith in the direction FAZ is taking this team?

      1. plenty of guys come up nowadays from AA, so I don’t see a promotion from AA to AAA as big as a promotion from A to AA.

        I would think if Sborz is tearing it up, if Santana is dominating, or if Yusniel Diaz shows an impact bat at Tulsa, they’ll easily bypass OKC and fly straight to LA

  13. I generally agree with Mark and AC on roster issues. I would play an OF of Kemp, Pederson, & Verdugo with Kike at 3B most of the time. When Puig returns sometime this week, then they will have to decide what to do but I suspect that they will give Kemp regular time off due to his arthritic hip/ankle and that there will be plenty of time for both Joc and Verdugo.

    I agree that the Braintrust’s fascination with utility players has reached the point of no return. They need to bring in guys who are really good at something rather than a bunch of guys who are so-so at many things.

    As I posted yesterday, the ‘pen is a mess. They need to find guys who can pitch. Cingrani hasn’t been the same since the “dead arm” issue 4/26. DL him. Move Hudson back to AAA – he’s not ready for prime time. Baez is best at low leverage situations. Fields can’t be trusted right now – he is HR prone. Liberatore seems OK. We won’t know about him or about Yimi Garcia for a while. Who is the bridge to Jansen? For that matter, is Jansen really Jansen? You have to let him pitch his way out, but really, who else do you trust? Chargois? And where has he been lately? They haven’t let him pitch in several days. (He’s pitched 3 innings since 4/29 and not since 5/3.)

    I am not sanguine about where the team is right now. (Yeah, but it’s early you say. ) They are 15 – 19 (21% of the season is gone) and they are 4 games under .500, in 4th place, 8 games back of the 1st place D-Backs, and even 4 back of the 3rd place Giants. (And the Giants have been without their top 3 starters most of the season and their closer too and they’ve had other injuries as well including Joe Panik who’s out for the season with thumb surgery.)

    Maybe this is the year that the Dodgers look to re-set?

  14. Dionysis, it’s only the winning team that supposedly suffers from a so-called World Series hangover, not the loser.

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