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In the aftermath: suspensions, umpires' miscues, James McDonald to the bullpen, call ups and more

July 21, 2010 |  7:10 pm
Sorting through the rumble the day after, very carefully …

-- The three Dodgers ejected Tuesday night were all suspended on Wednesday: Manager Joe Torre for Wednesday’s game, bench coach Bob Schaefer for one game (Thursday) and right-hander Clayton Kershaw for five games.

All it really means for Kershaw is that he’ll pitch one day later than normal. Not exactly a death knell.

-- Torre said when he spoke Tuesday to Bob Watson, MLB vice president of on-field operations, Watson confirmed the umpires had messed up the ninth inning Tuesday.

As written here earlier, when acting manager Don Mattingly turned to respond to James Loney and went back on the mound a second time, Mattingly should have been ejected and Jonathan Broxton allowed to pitch to the batter, Andres Torres, before being forced to leave the game.

Instead, the umpires allowed Mattingly to remain and immediately forced him to remove Broxton.

"It was just a screw up all the way around," Torre said.

-- Torre said there was no protest for the team to make now; they would have had to make it at the time the umpires made the mistake.

So who would have protested? Torre and Schaefer were already ejected and in the clubhouse. Was Mattingly supposed to say, "Hey, wait, you’re supposed to eject me and leave Broxton in for one batter?"

"Really, the people who are supposed to protest weren’t in the dugout," Torre said. "And that’s me."

-- Because the bullpen is currently beat up, instead of calling up an outfielder to replace Manny Ramirez on the disabled list, the Dodgers instead brought up left-handed reliever Jack Taschner.

This might not bode well for struggling left-hander George Sherrill. The journeyman Taschner was released by the Pirates in June. He signed with Albuquerque and had a 3.60 ERA in 10 games.

An outfielder, however, is expected to be added quickly -- possibly as soon as Thursday -- so one pitcher will have go.

-- James McDonald has been moved to the bullpen as a middle man and will not take a second start.

Torre said Saturday’s starter would be determined after he sees how the bullpen is used Wednesday.

That means Carlos Monasterios is the likely starter, though Torre said John Ely, now at triple-A Albuquerque, is also a candidate.

-- Outside of losing, the thing that Torre was still most upset about the next day was the umpires giving a cold Sherrill only eight pitches to warm up after they forced Broxton to exit the game.

Crew chief Tim McClelland had told Mattingly that Sherrill would get as much time to warm up as needed, but that wasn’t communicated to home plate umpire Adrian Johnson, who stopped Sherrill after eight.

McClelland told Torre he was talking to the rest of the umpires about another dispute and was unaware how many warm-ups Sherrill had thrown when Johnson called Torres to the plate.

"And I guess McClelland said, 'Are you ready?’ And (Sherrill) said, 'Well, I guess so.’ And that was that."

Torre said Sherrill could have asked for more warm-up pitches, but was just as confused as everyone else.

-- Mattingly is Torre’s anointed successor but has never been a manager. Torre said Mattingly’s faux pas has no reflection on his ability to manage.

"That has nothing to do with anything as far as his managerial ability," Torre said. "That’s just one of those reaction things. You turn around and talk to one of your players. That’s something you learn from and move on. It’s certainly easy to do when you walk off the mound when somebody says something to you."

-- Just who isn’t learning here? Loney almost forced Torre to make the same mistake of turning around and returning to the mound a second time to address a question last week in St. Louis.

"James knew exactly what he needed to do [Tuesday], he just wanted to be reassured," Torre said. "He felt badly last night. Manny said to me, 'How can Donny listen to James anyway?'

"You have to laugh at yourself at this point, because you can’t get that one back."

-- Steve Dilbeck
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