November 28, 2014

Kemp, Uribe Move to the DL; Sands, Herrera Head to LA

The injury bug continues to hit the Dodgers this past week, with Matt Kemp going on the DL with a strained left hamstring and Juan Uribe also going down with a left wrist injury that seems to be nagging him from last season.

The result is a bunch of newcomers for LA.  In place of Kemp, the Dodgers brought up leftfielder Jerry Sands, who in 2011 over 61 games in LA batted .253 with 4 HR and 26 RBI (he also struck out 55 times). In Uribe’s place came young Elian Herrera, a 27 year old rookie infielder who per Rotoworld, is hitting .358, including a .381 on-base percentage and nine stolen bases so far….but over the past three seasons, the kid has swiped at least 30 bases.

Of course, Kemp and Uribe join Juan Rivera and Jerry Hairston, Jr. on the DL.

This also creates issues at third base and center field for Don Mattingly, although center looks ok with Gwynn as a solid option with experience and Ethier also a likely play (Andre got the start tonight).  Third base appears to be an even bigger Pandora’s Box than it was befor,e with the less than exciting options of Herrera, Justin Sellers and Adam Kennedy – none of which are hitting above .167 so far this year.

Now all the Dodgers have to do is find a way to survive the next two weeks and hopefully hang on to that six game lead in the NL West and hopefully the best record in baseball.

Update: I added the obligatory “celeb” shot of Jerry Sands with “The Voice” season 2 winner Jermaine Paul from before Saturday’s game.

Photo Credit: Jill Weisleder/Los Angeles Dodgers

 

 

Get Ready to Run the Bases at Dodger Stadium

So this is pretty cool: the Dodgers are hosting their second “Public Batting Practice” tomorrow night from 5-8 p.m.  James Loney and Matt Kemp will be on hand, as well as “several of the team’s top prospects” (no specifics given right now).  So if you’ve ever had a desire to throw a nasty curve like Clayton Kershaw, run like Juan Pierre or go deep like Manny, then this is your event!

…but it ain’t cheap!  $500 per person gets you through the turnstiles, but honestly, this does sound really cool.  Additional bells and whistles include: live batting practice on the field, indoor batting practice in the batting cages, pitching practice in the bullpens, opportunity to play the field and shag fly balls, behind-the-scenes locker room and clubhouse tours, OPEN BAR, the chance to see your name and image on DodgerVision and a handful of other things.  I imagine it will be something like this first-person account  from Erin at Robots Took My Medicine of the Dodgers’ holiday party for season ticket holders.

 The Dodgers are expecting 200 people to show up tomorrow.  I’m pretty interested to see if they really get that many given the current economy.

Maybe Ned can use this opportunity as a chance to scout for that elusive power hitter the Dodgers need!  At the very least they should spend the $100,000 in  expected revenue on Manny’s deal…that should buy us about a week of his services, right?

For more info or to buy tickets, visit www.dodgers.com/underthelights. 

Sabathia Gone, Dodgers Going After Wilson?

While I know I’ve spouted off about the need to make a deal (especially for a shortstop), trading Matt Kemp for Jack Wilson straight-up is sheer lunacy! Kemp is one of the brightest stars of the Dodgers’ future, and trading him for an average shortstop is ridiculous. Yes, the club could win the NL West with the right move, but this isn’t going to put them over the top in terms of winning the pennant. This would be a move made by Ned out of sheer desperation and is cause for immediate dismissal. Surely the Dodgers brain trust can see the disaster that this move would bring with the fans, right? I’m trusting that after all the time Ned has spent defending the younger players, that he wouldn’t just go out and trade Kemp the moment he decided one or more were expendable.

At the very least, you would hope the Dodgers would package 1-2 of their high-profile younger players/prospects together for two of the following three holes: a #1 starter, a big bat and a quality shortstop. But trading Kemp for an average (albeit solid) shortstop, is just wrong. Hopefully this is just a rumor, but time will tell. You just never know with Ned.

Trade Rumors Circling: Kemp, Ethier, Loney on the Block?

 Pittsburgh Pirates' Jason Bay strokes a two-run double off Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Matt Scherzer in the fourth inning of a baseball game at Pittsburgh Sunday, June 8, 2008. The Pirates won 6-4.

If you believe Ken Rosenthal at Fox Sports, that is indeed the case.  According to Ken’s article, the Dodgers might actually pull the trigger on dealing one of the kids for a proven hitter, ala Jason Bay, Magglio Ordonez or Matt  Holliday.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately and have had a change of heart: I think the Dodgers should consider trading one (1) of their younger players.  I would have a bunch of conditions attached, of course, with the first being that Matt Kemp is off the table.  The guy is a future All-Star and he wants to be a Dodger.  I’d prefer to deal Loney or LaRoche, and could be convinced to move Ethier if the price was right.  The problem is the guy making the deals.  I simply don’t trust Ned to bring us back someone who isn’t on the downside of their career or a rent-a-player.  No, this needs to be a move that helps us win now, but also is piece that allows us to build for the future.

From Dejan Kovacevic (the Pirates’ beat writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette):

If any team offers the Pirates premier prospects for what they feel is fair value, from what I gather, they will not hesitate to move. Who takes over at shortstop or any other position would be secondary. The goal, as they often lay out, is to win a championship, and that only happens with a lot of high-end talent. That is not the current situation.

Vin Scully and Troyfromwestvirginia on Matt Kemp

I recently came across two great YouTube videos – one with Vin Scully giving the play-by-play of the Matt Kemp vs. Yorvit Torrealba (a fight that I missed due to a family event) and another with our old friend TroyFromWestVirginia who decided to film 2.5 minutes of himself impersonating Matt Kemp sitting in the dugout with nothing to do. I’m not sure where he comes up with this stuff, but I’ll have to give the nod to ol’ Vin for his interpretation of the fight.

Matt and Yorvit go at it in Denver

TroyFromWestVirginia “ridin’ the pine” as Matt Kemp