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It's time for ... sitting the Dodgers' regulars?

Rafael-furcal_600

Put me in coach, I’m ready to play, today …

Unless, you know it’s like three games in a row. Then it is apparently rest time. The first weekend of the season. With two off days coming in the next six.

We’ve seen this before, not that it was any better understood when Joe Torre was pulling the strings.

Now it’s Don Mattingly’s turn, and it’s apparently going to be more of the same. Maybe even worse? Guess he was learning by Torre’s side all those years, although you would think he’d also learn from Torre’s mistakes.

So after the Dodgers had won the first two games of the season over the rival Giants, Saturday Mattingly trots out a lineup against Matt Cain that wouldn’t have impressed in spring training.

Five regulars were out, three who had to be because of injuries -- Casey Blake, Jay Gibbons, and I guess, Juan Uribe.

And then he sat shortstop Rafael Furcal and catcher Rod Barajas.

Mattingly has said all along he wanted to give Furcal regular rest in an attempt to keep his trick back healthy.

But the third game of the season? After building up momentum with two victories over the defending world champions? With off days coming Monday and Thursday? It’s on the schedule and everything.

If Furcal is that fragile, how are the Dodgers going to count on him for an entire season?

Starting the first game of his career at catcher was Hector Gimenez, who like second baseman Ivan De Jesus Jr. was looking for the first hit of his career. De Jesus is still looking, and is now hitless in his first seven at-bats.

"I expected to win that game," Mattingly said.

Such an optimist. Instead, he lost 10-0. Left-hander Ted Lilly, who received the worst run support of any starter in the majors last season, had to wonder if he was cursed. Lilly was far from sharp, but the Dodgers were shut out.

I understand trying to get Furcal some regular time off, but when he really needs it. And unless he’s got something going on physically the Dodgers aren’t revealing, it's hard to imagine his 33-year-old body cried out for rest after having played two whole games.

They’ve had all winter to rest. Now it’s time to play.

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers shortstop Rafael Furcal delivers a run-scoring single against the Giants in the sixth inning Friday night. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press

 
Comments () | Archives (20)

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Some here might consider the L.A. climate conducive to an early retirement ...

regardless, TDS!

Miss us yet?

I was there Saturday, and was standing in the massive Dodger Dog line when they announced the lineup. Everyone literally in sync yelled "where in the hell is Furcal?" Our pathetic roster was exposed yesterday. Mattingly was exposed as having a loser mentality. God forbid we try to sweep the world champs.

True words!

Giants 10
Dodgers 0
Comatosed fan 1

And without Davey Lopes in the lineup, too!

Thanks, Steve. It really is outrageous. We may remember this day as a game changer. Torre never did this with the Yankees. Mattingly apparently got it from Torre doing it here. I had some friends at the game who were fuming - and they weren't even relatives of Ted Lilly. Worse of course because it was the Giants. Worse because it was national television. Worse because it was the third game of the season. Worse of course because it was 1-8 Matt Cain. Mattingly intended to win that game? Really? On what planet? Is he simply a younger version of his mentor Uncle Joe? He took the wind out of the entire city with yesterday's move. Thank you, Donnie Baseball.

rookie 2nd-sacker "K"-jesus has butt 7 at-bats, w/an already alarmingly high 5 whiffs!!!!
& he's batting 2nd in the order, where making "contact" is key......

thus, only an Xtremely keen-eye 4-talent, such as mgr. ma-teen-glee could arrange such a lineup........keep up the great work, donnie-beeze-ball!!!!

if the "DUD-gers" are gonna play minor-leaguers, ought not they also only charge a minor-league admission fee @ the gate???

further, & refund mucho buX to those who've already purchased tiX, presuming (wrongly) they were paying to see Major league players????

Gee, I may be the only one here that's looked ahead and seen 159 games left on the schedule. And talk about Torre's mistakes.. by the third week of last season everyone was screaming he was using the regulars, especially the bullpen, way too much. There are more important things than sweeping the Giants (though I'll admit not many). Hopefully, Mattingly is looking at what the whole TEAM can do. If he only has "regulars" for 162 games then we go down the same hole as 2010. Once those guys are used up there had better be some other guys ready to play and what better time to find out than now when it's early enough that MAYBE he can fix the obvious weaknesses. rarely disagree with you Steve but burning up the starters is sort term gratification on the road to log term disaapointment. I give Mattingly a plus for guts knowing here's going to incur ire for doing the smart thing.

"I expected to win that game," Mattingly said.

Really! You had scrubs going up against Matt Cain and you expected to win the game!

That's dumber than Billingsley throwing a 2-0 fastball down the middle of the plate to Belt, with runners on 1st & 2nd! DUH!

'The 7th is made up of Phantoms'... so too the dudgers their 'Twilight Zone' ; not enough Cavalry come to the rescue this updated Little Big Horn version 1962 NY Mets, likewise.


Beyond 'that was then & this is now' imposters, have Walter Mitty's - 'never were's & never will be's' - MLBrs same way we imagine ourselves as singers courtesy shower walls... and a Mattingly expecting to win, like Custer.


It's not so much a matter the dudgers are 30-somethings as that they aren't even George Blanda, still playing some NFL QB at age 48 - for a 1st place team.


Course, George had "just win baby" Al Davis on his side; we have McFrank...

Went to the game yesterday, probably about 25,000 in the stands by the end of the 3rd inning.
When the starting lineup was announced, wow, the get away day line up on Saturday!
All of the regulars must have been too hung over to make it to the field.
With Miles, Carroll, De Jesus, and Paul, was our talent short?
By the end of the game it looked and sounded like there were more Giants fans than Dodgers fans in the stands.
What a disaster.

baffling

This makes sense against an out of division team, but in game 3 in a head to head with the team most likely to win our division (or most likely to come in behind the Dodgers if they pull it off) you cannot afford to just give away a game. The dodgers had a chance to keep their foots on the pedal and get in the Giants heads early in the season. Way to blow it Mattingly!

Why continue to insult ourselves? Do we like pain? ANS: frankie thinks so. DON`T GO TO THE GAMES PERIOD. HE WILL CONTINUE TO INSULT YOU. THATS HIS M.O.

I was hugely disappointed that Mattingly didn't try to visit Lilly twice in the same inning and expect for him to remain in the game.

I have a new name for him, and I offer it to TJ Simers, free of charge:

Miss Manager.

It would be pretty hard to give you an argument Steve. You're absolutely right.

I went to the game as well and the first thing I thought was do the Dodgers really need to have 5'8" Aaron Miles on the roster when they already have an undersized punch and judy utilty player in Jamey Carroll.

Apparently Donnie felt so bad that the World Champions were playing like a minor league team, that he decided to try and even up the game by fielding an ACTUAL minor team. It worked. Lucky for us Dodger fans, the Giants determination to have Belt play 1st base while putting their 1st baseman in right field paid off for the Dodgers on Sunday. If these guys are the two teams that are supposed to fight it out for the NL West, this could be the first time in history that a team with a losing record actually makes the playoffs.


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