I’m going to have to think of new and interesting ways to say basically the same thing as always, which is that the Dodgers fell behind after a lousy starting pitching outing, had no prayer of a comeback because no one other than Matt Kemp & Andre Ethier can hit, and had to suffer through continuing atrocities from Juan Uribe & James Loney with no end in sight. Of the nine Dodger hits, five came from Kemp & Ethier. As the other four came from Rod Barajas, Tony Gwynn, Marcus Thames, and Ivan DeJesus (pinch-hitting), the Dodger infield once again contributed absolutely nothing. Stop me if you’ve heard any of that before.
Actually, there was one new addition to the list, and that was Clayton Kershaw struggling tremendously through his entire outing. You’re going to hear a lot about home plate umpire Joe West’s tight strike zone, and there’s absolutely merit to those complaints, but it’s not the sole reason Kershaw couldn’t get the job done. Kershaw just wasn’t himself from the start, showing an inability to miss bats, and while he did an admirable job of limiting the damage until allowing an Allen Craig blast in the 5th, this is not a team that can overcome anything but an outstanding starting pitching performance. The five walks Kershaw issued were tied for the second-most of his career. Following Kershaw, Mike MacDougal and Kenley Jansen were effective before Ramon Troncoso punched his own ticket back to AAA in the 8th and 9th, making the final score a lot uglier than it needed to be.
The Dodgers have now allowed 126 runs and 646 hits in the three games to St. Louis, and are still winless this year when allowing the other team to score first.
Uribe, Loney… good lord. I don’t even know what to say after two more dueling oh-for-fours. Uribe saw just eight pitches in four at-bats. Think about that for a second. After seeing a few pitches his first time up, he made an out on the very first pitch each of the next three times up – all three times with runners in scoring position.
It’s cool, though. Not like Uribe’s a bad-body guy who’s over 30 and still has nearly three years and about $20m coming to him or anything.
Before the game, Ned Colletti talked to Tony Jackson and claimed he wasn’t worried about the team’s recent play. Before you jump on him for that, remember that that’s exactly what he should say – the last thing we need is the GM publicly freaking out. I couldn’t help but laugh at this quote, though:
“We have faced good pitching,” Colletti said. “The Giants’ staff, obviously, is one of the best in the league. Colorado pitched well against us in two games, and then San Diego and [the Cardinals]. Those are four of the better pitching staffs in baseball, and that is also a part of [the struggles of] our offense.”
If his point is that they haven’t faced the true pitching dregs like the Mets or D-Backs yet, then fine, but come on. They didn’t have to face either Chris Carpenter (pitching tomorrow) or Adam Wainwright (injured) in the first three games, and also haven’t yet faced the four aces of the Phillies or the quality top two or three arms in places like Atlanta, Florida, Houston, Cincinnati and Milwaukee. The point is, there’s a lot of good pitching out there, and you’re going to need to hit it rather than complain about it if you plan on winning.
I know I haven’t exactly been the biggest supporter of Ivan DeJesus, but can we please get him more time at second base instead of Aaron Miles? Maybe DeJesus is a big league player, and maybe he’s not, but at least there’s hope there. Miles (0-2 tonight, hitting .214) is just execrable, and that’s not likely to change. DeJesus at least got his first big league hit tonight, and there’s no reason to not be playing him.
Come on, you didn’t think Ryan Theriot could come back to LA, get thrown out on the bases twice and have me let it go by, right?
The funny part about this second one below is that Barajas probably didn’t even tag Theriot, but Theriot clearly didn’t touch the plate. TOOTBLAN.