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Dodgers bullpen: Was it sink-or-swim time for struggling Ramon Ortiz?

Am I the only one who felt like Ramon Ortiz was out there pitching for his little Dodger life Friday night?

Pitching into his third inning for the first time all season, having major control issues, and Joe Torre left him in there to -- what? -- just figure it out?

Ortiz went into the eighth inning with the Dodgers already down 5-1, and then promptly went to a full count on each of the first three batters, walking each.

Yet with the bases loaded and nobody out, Torre remained on the dugout steps. Like he almost defiantly wanted to see Ortiz get out of the jam.

The bullpen already has been overworked, but Torre had George Sherrill -- another struggling reliever --  warmed up in the bullpen. And still, he left Ortiz to his own devices.

Then Ortiz actually got out of the jam with help from one of the stranger double plays you’ll ever see.

First he got Albert Gonzalez to pop up, and then, with Torre keeping the infield in with speedy Willie Harris up, came the oddity.

Harris bounced to James Loney at first, who fired home for the force, though catcher A.J. Ellis took a swipe at Cristian Guzman with the glove, like he didn’t understand the situation.

Which was nothing compared with Harris, who apparently thought that was the third out. So he turned and started walking into the Washington dugout.

Ellis threw back to Ronnie Belliard covering first, who tagged a hastily retreating Harris several feet off the bag. Umpire Jerry Crawford called him out, though in reality he had run out of the baseline and should have been automatically out.

Probably not the way Torre had envisioned Ortiz escaping, but he had.

Ortiz threw 48 pitches in his 2 2/3 innings. He actually lowered his ERA to 6.94. After a terrific spring, the season’s start has been a struggle for Ortiz. If Torre was looking for reason to still believe in him, he still is.

-- Steve Dilbeck
 
Comments () | Archives (6)

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what a horrid product the dodgers have put on the field!!!
of all positions, the catcher MUST have his head in the game, yet ellis clearly "lax" in funda"mental"s (any small wonder why he's been a career minor-leaguer?)

& "sink-or-swim" re: ortiz II ought to be helped-along by merely affixing a heavy anchor to each of his ankles, & unceremoniously dumping him into the pacific!!! (i.e., SINK!!!!)

You can thank Frank McCourt and his incompetent management team of putting together a miserable pitching staff in 2010. The Dodgers will be lucky to stay out of the cellar this year primarily due to the fact that after Kuroda and Kershaw, they've got nobody. McCourt continues to lie to the vulnerable Dodger fans about the Dodger budget, etc. Your actions speak louder than any words could, Mr. McCourt. Continue lying to your fans and lying to yourself. We know what your motives are...Greed will ultimately lead to your downfall. The empire has already started crumbling with your failed marriage. In time, the rest of your empire will also fail.

I certainly hope Ortiz got plenty of rest today after throwing those 48 pitches, because he's gonna pitch tomorrow in relief of Billingsley...along with Belisario, Troncoso and possibly Kuo and Sherrill. Monasterios (39 pitches) and Broxton (30 pitches) worked too hard today to throw tomorrow.

Any management team of the Dodgers in the past would have seen enough question marks with the 4 starting pitchers to sign a fifth. Yet they decided to sift through garbage and are receiving garbage in return.
Frank says mercenaries don't work..apparently he hasn't seen the Yankees. 80 million dollar payroll for a big market team??? Give me a break.
Frank says he doesn't have an image problem. He is clueless. This team is awful and the results are showing.

The Dodgers have recalled Jon Link, who should be good for a few innings if needed, since he hasn't pitched since last Tuesday.
 

I find it rather amusing that just because the Dodgers are in a cold-streak, everyone is ripping McCourt & Colletti and the players, though if the Dodgers were on a hot-streak, there would be enough praise to go around for McCourt & Colletti and the players. There is a word for fans like this: bandwagoners.


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