October 31, 2014

Saito Goes Down…Now What?

Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Takashi Saito, of Japan, is taken out of the game against the Florida Marlins because of an injury during the ninth inning of a baseball game in Los Angeles, Saturday, July 12, 2008.

So as you all know by now, Saito is out for six weeks with a strained ligament in his elbow. You knew it was bad when the trainers sprinted out to him on July 12, just before the All-Star break. I watched that game, and it really didn’t look that bad, but he was obviously concerned. I’ve heard rumors that Saito went through at least one significant injury earlier in his career over in Japan.

Ok, so now that we don’t have Saito for a while, the big question is whether or not Broxton is the answer. I love the kid and am all for giving him and his near 100 mph fastball a shot, but that leaves a hole for a quality set-up man…something that should be easier to obtain in a trade than a closer at this late date. As the Yahoo! article indicates, Torre is reportedly considering Beimel and Kuo for Brox’s old job. For now, I like this plan as the Dodgers have plenty of other needs before the trading deadline, most notable a shortstop, some HR power and maybe a front-line starting pitcher.

A Pitching Staff Worthy of the United Nations

It’s hard to believe that the Dodgers’ 5-2 victory last night over the Reds was the first time a Japanese pitcher (Saito) had saved a game for a Japanese starter (Kuroda) in the majors.  Ken Gurnick, of course, was all over the story.  Call me crazy, but that’s pretty cool! 

One thing that I don’t think Ken noticed were the pitchers of record in the May 17th game when the Dodgers beat the Angels.  As our pal Sebastian points out over at Back Alley Media, we can all get along!:

In today’s interleague MLB game, which saw the Dodgers beat the Angels, 6-3, the Korean guy (Chan-Ho Park) started and pitched 4 strong innings, followed up by the Taiwanese guy (Hong-Chih Kuo), who pitched another strong 4 and earned the win, with the Japanese guy (Takashi Saito) closing it out in the 9th. Yes we can, in fact, all get along!  

LA Dodgers IP / H / R / ER / BB / K / HR / Season ERA
C. Park 4.0 / 3 / 2 / 1 / 2 / 3 / 0 / 2.17
H. Kuo (W, 3-1) 4.0 / 3 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 4 / 0 / 2.40
T. Saito 1.0 / 2 / 1 / 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 / 2.08