Dodgers Now

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Category: Jamey Carroll

Stephen Strasburg earns a bow; Dodgers beat Nationals, 7-3

Dodgers-blog_640 Stephen Strasburg strolled to the mound, if fashionably late, and was not carried on a walking throne by manservants. Hitters were not required to bow before entering the batter's box. Plebeians in the crowd did not throw rose petals at his feet, at least not literally.

Otherwise, royalty arrived and then actually delivered. Which, considering the buildup and the fawning, is saying something.

In his first appearance since undergoing Tommy John surgery, the expressionless Strasburg was in total command. With machine-like efficiency, the Washington Nationals' 23-year-old phenom shut out the Dodgers for five innings, throwing 56 pitches on a wet Tuesday night in Washington.

The Dodgers cooperated, swinging early and often, and at no point did they actually pretend to threaten Strasburg. Maybe they’d read his effusive press clippings. And just maybe, Strasburg will actually continue to live up to the incredible hype.

Strasburg left with a 3-0 lead, but the Dodgers came back to tie it in the sixth and prevent the right-hander from earning the victory.

The Dodgers ultimately defeated the Nationals, 7-3, taking the lead on a two-run single by Rod Barajas in the eighth, Strasburg by then long gone, his budding legend one outstanding start richer, the game itself almost reduced to a sideshow.

Continue reading »

Dodgers offense suddenly listless in 7-2 loss to Nationals

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Meanwhile, back to your regular Dodgers season …

That offensive machine that had suddenly –- and quite unexpectedly -– become the Dodgers, has reverted back to more familiar form.

With Hiroki Kuroda giving up a career-high four home runs and a series of Washington pitchers handcuffing the Dodgers, the Nationals easily downed the Dodgers, 7-2, on Monday afternoon.

The Dodgers had won 11 of their last 12 games and six in a row before losing to Atlanta on Sunday. During that 12-game stretch, they had averaged 6.25 runs a game.

But after consecutive doubles by Jamey Carroll and Matt Kemp against John Lannan produced a run in the first inning, the Dodgers' offense pretty much closed shop.

And with Kuroda giving up three home runs in the first inning alone -– he had never previously given up three homers in an entire game –- it was a bad time for their offense to wither.

The Dodgers had struggled to score for Kuroda (11-15) most of the season, but in his last four starts during their offensive surge had produced 32 runs. Maybe he got used to it, but that offense wasn’t going to make an appearance on a gray day in the nation's capital.

Ian Desmond led off the bottom of the first innings with a home run. Michael Morse followed a Ryan Zimmerman single with a two-run homer. Former Dodger Jayson Werth followed with another homer.

It was 4-1, and with the Dodgers unable to generate any real scoring threats until the ninth inning, the game was essentially over.

Kuroda then settled down until Morse, who has one of the ugliest batting stances in baseball, led off the bottom of the sixth another home run. He has 26 on the season.

Kuroda went six innings on the day, giving up five runs on eight hits. Conversely, he did not walk a batter and struck out a season-high nine.

Rookie Josh Lindblom gave up one run in the seventh inning on a Desmond single and Rick Ankiel double. Betrayed by some sloppy fielding, Ramon Troncoso surrendered one unearned run in the eighth. Aaron Miles let a ball through his legs for an error and Dee Gordon simply dropped a soft liner for what would have been a double play, before Wilson Ramos knocked in a run with a single.

The Dodgers ended the game they way they started it, adding a final run in the ninth inning on back-to-back doubles by A.J. Ellis and Justin Sellers.

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Reliever Hong-Chih Kuo says he's having fun again

Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly wants more offense for 2012

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers starting pitcher Hiroki Kuroda reacts after giving up one of three home runs to the Washington Nationals in the first inning Sunday at Nationals Park.Credit: Evan Habeeb / US Presswire

Dodgers web musings: Reaction to the commie invasion

Good news! No word today of any offers for the Dodgers from former KGB leaders, Kim Il Sung Inc. or the Illuminati.

Kinda makes you all warm inside, huh?

Yep, one day after The Times’ Bill Shaikin wrote of a local businessman, backed with funds from the People’s Republic of China,  making a record offer of $1.2 billion for the Dodgers, people are still trying to make sense of it.

Major League Baseball apparently was not too impressed, but then there is probably precious little involving Frank McCourt that would impress them these days, save for his announcing he is officially putting the team up for sale to the highest bidder.

That 21-day window in the offer makes it seem all but impossible, anyway, and Yahoo Sports' Jeff Passan views the messy ongoing struggles of the Dodgers and Mets as teams united by greed, "excess, profiteering, power -- the usual ills that come with entities worth billions of dollars and the people who live in the netherworld that rewards their pursuit."

Coming next, a bid from the legion of the dead!

Harold Meyerson in The Times writes that if the deal with the Chinese were to actually go through, the Dodgers would become the  "very symbol of the decline of American capitalism." Like McCourt doesn’t have enough to worry about.

Paul Oberjuerge wrote he’s so fed up with McCourt that "As long as they don’t sell 'The Book of Mao' at the concession stands and brutally crack down on fans who boo the club … we’d be good!' "

And then in a video (sort of), Fox Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi said the Dodgers' ownership mess is taking so much of MLB’s attention it is holding up the progress of the Astros' sale.

   

Non-communist Dodgers’ news on the Web:

-- The Times’ Dylan Hernandez says that not only is Casey Blake headed for season-ending surgery, but Juan Uribe likely is too.

-- Mike Petriello fantasizes over Uribe just staying away at MikeSciosciasTragicIllness.

-- Hernandez also credits rookie Dee Gordon with sparking the Dodgers victory Thursday in his return from the disabled list.

-- The Times’ Bill Plaschke thinks Matt Kemp is the National League MVP and Clayton Kershaw its Cy Young winner. Hold tight, still a month to go.

-- Sports Illustrated’s Jon Heyman, however, said voters put emphasis on "valuable" and only lists Kemp as his fifth-leading candidate, while tabbing Kershaw at No. 1.

-- The McCourts have actually sold one of their seven homes.

-- Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins compares two stars reacting very differently to the crossroads in their careers, the Dodgers’ Andre Ethier and the Padres’ Heath Bell.

-- ESPN/LA’s Tony Jackson looks at Jamey Carroll after the Dodgers failed to move him at the trading deadline.

-- Fox Sports’ Joe McDonnell thinks Juan Rivera is building a case to return next season.

-- The Register’s Howard Cole tries to find worse baseball things than Eugenio Velez’ 0-for-30 start to his career as a Dodger.

-- And for those of you who enjoy videos of old Dodgers, here’s one of Don Drysdale in a Vitalis commercial that also features ex-Giants manager Herman Franks.

  

 -- Steve Dilbeck

Trade deadline comes and goes, but Jamey Carroll remains

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After Wednesday afternoon’s game was over, Jamey Carroll stood at his locker and packed his bags. At least he finally knew where they were headed.

Carroll had been the one Dodger with a decent chance of being moved prior to the Aug. 31 trading deadline, but the deadline came and went, and Carroll remained.

His bags were headed to Pittsburgh for the Dodgers’ next game against the Pirates. Not to Atlanta or any other city with a team closing in on a playoff berth.

It’s too bad, really. Carroll will turn 38 this off-season and is running out of chances to participate in the postseason again. And like every other player not named Hiroki Kuroda, the versatile infielder would have loved to play in games that mattered in September, to have been a factor in the playoff chase.

"Everybody does," he said. "Everybody does."

How disappointed Carroll was at not being moved was hard to gauge.

"It was a win-win, regardless," he said. "This is the team I signed with, and I want to be here. There was a nice set of chances to go win as well. It’s not a bad situation, to have a chance to be in the big leagues."

The Dodgers certainly would have moved Carroll, and it’s believed even eaten the rest of his $2.3 million salary this season, if the Braves had offered even a reasonable lower-level prospect in return.

The Dodgers had kept Carroll informed of discussions and he knew a trade was at least a possibility, so he tried to consider the ramifications Tuesday night if he were moved.

"I felt it was a possibility," he said. "When it’s something you don’t have control over, you prepare for it as best you can. My wife and I are people who make plans, and we hopefully didn’t want to get caught off guard. So we sat down and tried to come up with something of a plan."

Right now, Carroll said his plan is to start hitting again. He is in something of a mini-slump for him, hitting .224 (11 for 49) over his last 15 games. He's batting .288 this season.

Carroll will become a free agent at the end of the season and said he had yet to consider what will happen after his contract ends with the Dodgers.

"I've had no complaints here whatsoever," he said. "We’ve enjoyed our time here. There’s another month left [in the season] and those are things to worry about when we get to that time."

And then he turned for Pittsburgh.

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Dodgers stay hot with 4-2 win over Padres

Reliever Scott Elbert proves he's a keeper

T.J. Simers: He's positive a negative approach can motivate team

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers infielder Jamey Carroll singles in a run against the Colorado Rockies on Saturday at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Jeff Golden / Getty Images

James Loney's homer ties it in ninth, Matt Kemp's wins it in 11th, 7-6

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To Jason Hammel, the Colorado Rockies, the National League, et al:

Please write on the nearest blackboard 100 times, the one player on the Dodgers you absolutely do not want to beat you is Matt Kemp.

That’s easy, right? Simple, logical stuff. Kemp is enjoying an MVP-caliber season. The rest of the Dodgers, not so much.

Yet somehow with Saturday’s game tied 6-6 in the 11th inning, Hammel left one over the plate to Kemp.

Wild guess where it landed?

Kemp didn’t even hit it all that hard, but well enough to drift over the right-field fence and leave the Dodgers with a 7-6 victory on a hot, sticky day that pushed their winning streak to five games.

Kemp got some company in the long-ball department, James Loney going deep in the ninth inning to push the game into extra innings.

All this after the Dodgers rallied with five runs in the sixth inning to take a 5-4 lead over the Rockies, before a few close friends and family members.

And then – boom! – the Dodgers had barely returned to the shade of the dugout when Troy Tulowitzki hit his second two-run homer to put the Rockies up, 6-5.

The first-pitch temperature was 97 degrees, which no doubt contributed to another painfully small crowd in a nationally televised game at Dodger Stadium.

The official attendance was announced as 35,537, which was so ridiculous as to be laughable. There was maybe half that, which no doubt pleased a small group outside the stadium that asked fans to boycott the game. Official crowds are supposed to reflect tickets sold.

This crowd was so small, you could actually hear individual fans yell out encouragement, or critiques, at players. It was a spring game in a bigger setting.

Those who did attend had to be concerned the Dodgers were going to duplicate a somewhat stunning loss suffered to journeyman Kevin Millwood on Sunday in Denver. It’s his only victory of the year in four starts, after starting the season back in the minors.

The Rockies took a 3-0 lead against Chad Billingsley in the third, a Carlos Gonzalez single driving in one run and Tulowitzki hitting his first two-run homer. Gonzales singled in another run in the fourth. Gonzalez has had at least one RBI in 11 consecutive games.

With everyone melting in the sweltering afternoon, a 4-0 lead looked pretty safe after five innings. By the middle of the fourth, umpire Bob Davidson was so dehydrated he had to leave the game. He was given fluid through an IV in the umpire’s room.

Then a pair of errors and some timely hitting ignited the Dodgers in the sixth. After Millwood gave up one-out singles by Aaron Miles and Loney, Matt Belisle relieved and things started to slip away for Colorado.

Miles should have been out at home at home on a Kemp bouncer, but catcher Chris Iannetta dropped the relay for an out. Juan Rivera singled in another run, and Kemp should have been out trying to take third on the hit, but third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff dropped that relay for another error.

With first base open, the Rockies intentionally walked Andre Ethier to load the bases. Casey Blake made it a painful decision, doubling into the left-field corner to score two to tie it. Ethier also tried to score on the play, but for the second consecutive game was thrown out at the plate.

After A.J. Ellis was hit by a Belisle pitch, Jamey Carroll – batting almost 100 points lower with runners in scoring position than his overall .292 average – poked a single to right to score Blake and the Dodgers suddenly had a 5-4 lead.

The Dodgers called on reliever Hong-Chih Kuo to start the seventh, and their celebration was about to be brief. Gonzalez beat out an infield single and Tulowitzki hit his second home run – this one a line drive that landed in the second row just inside the left-field foul pole.

Then came the long ball for the Dodgers, Loney’s in the ninth to tie it and Kemp’s in the 11th to win it for Mike MacDougal (1-1), the Dodgers’ sixth pitcher. It left Kemp with an even 100 RBIs on the season. And six of Loney's eight homers have come against the Rockies.

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Dodgers-Rockies box score

Vin Scully gets the OK to return as Dodgers broadcaster

In 1966, the Beatles brought a whole new ballgame to Dodger Stadium

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp connects for a game-winning home run in the 11th inning against Colorado on Saturday afternoon at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times

Vin Scully to return, Matt Kemp goes 30-30, Dodgers win, 6-1

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On a night the best news came in the middle of the game from the broadcast booth, the Dodgers managed to keep it going on the field.

Out of seemingly nowhere Friday night, Vin Scully announced on the air that he would return next season as the voice of the Dodgers.

Trailing 1-0 at the time on another solo home run given up by Ted Lilly, the Dodgers then rallied with a six-run seventh inning, as Matt Kemp hit his 30th home run of the season to become only the second Dodger to steal 30 bases and hit 30 home runs in the same season.

A balk forced in the tying run, rookie Justin Sellers hit a go-ahead single to drive in two, hot-hitting James Loney hit a two-run home run and Kemp followed with a solo shot in the Dodgers 6-1 victory over the Rockies.

Up in the Dodger Stadium press box, Scully had to be smiling.

Scully, 83, will broadcast his 63rd consecutive season for the Dodgers next season. The Hall of Fame broadcaster debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1950.

On the field, the Dodgers earned their fourth consecutive victory while ending a five-game streak by Colorado.

Lilly came in with a 2.64 ERA in his last five starts, when he also happened to go 1-4. He looked like he might be in more trouble after giving up a solo home run to Carlos Gonzalez in the first. It was the 28th home run allowed by Lilly on the season, and 20 have been of the solo variety.

With Esmil Rogers keeping the Dodgers off balance, it remained a 1-0 game going into the seventh. But Rogers walked Andre Ethier and Aaron Miles to open the bottom of the inning and then Rod Barajas singled to load the bases.

It was looking bad for the Dodgers when Jamey Carroll flied out to medium center, Ethier tagged and ran through third base coach Tim Wallach’s stop sign and was doubled up at home.

The Rockies intentionally walked pinch-hitter Tony Gwynn Jr. to load the bases, but when Miles feigned rushing home, Rogers was called for a balk and Miles trotted home with the tying run.

Sellers then delivered his two-run single, and Loney and Kemp their home runs.

Raul Mondesi is the only other Dodger in the 30-30 club. Mondesi accomplished it twice, but never as early as Kemp (130th game), whose blast carried well over the wall in center.

Lilly (8-13) went seven strong innings, allowing only the one run and three hits. He walked one and struck out five.

MORE:

Dodgers-Rockies box score

In 1966, the Beatles brought a whole new ballgame to Dodger Stadium

Rookie pitcher Nathan Eovaldi is capitalizing on early opportunity

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers starter Ted Lilly delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies on Friday night at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press

Dodgers need to do right by Jamey Carroll and trade him

Jamey

Jamey Carroll is 37 years old and has had two career playoff at-bats. He’s been a marvelous find for the Dodgers the last two years. He’s played hard, played all over the field, filled in for injured players and led by example.

He’s done everything they’ve asked while suffering through two of the Dodgers' most difficult seasons ever. All for the bargain price of $3.85 million.

Now it’s time to do something for him.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports tweeted the Dodgers have placed Carroll on waivers. At this time of the year, hardly a surprise. Teams place tons of players on waivers before the Wednesday trade deadline. If they clear, then they’re in position to work a trade.

But there is a strong likelihood Carroll will be claimed by a contender. Then the Dodgers would have 48 hours to either work out a trade or withdraw him from waivers.

Work the deal. Get what you can, even if it's precious little.

Carroll deserves the opportunity to play for a contender, to make a real postseason contribution. At his age, he may not get another chance. The Milwaukee Brewers had reportedly talked to the Dodgers about Carroll prior to the July 31 non-waiver trading deadline.

The Dodgers’ season is now about the future. They need to get a longer look at infielder Justin Sellers. Shortstop Dee Gordon will return soon, and the Dodgers will want to see Sellers play second. They need to call Ivan De Jesus Jr.  back up when rosters expand Thursday.

At this point, they have no real need for Carroll. His contract is up at the end of the season. And if they wanted him back next season, they could sign him the same as any other team. They could also try to return infielder Aaron Miles, who’s almost three years younger.

Until James Loney’s recent streak, Carroll has been third on the Dodgers in hits this season. Not bad for a guy who was originally signed to share time and mentor Blake DeWitt at second. The model of consistency, he hit .291 last season and is hitting .291 this season.

Now it’s time to give Carroll a shot at more than those two hitless playoff at-bats he received with the Rockies in 2007. He’s earned it.

MORE:

In 1966, the Beatles brought a whole new ballgame to Dodger Stadium

Rookie pitcher Nathan Eovaldi is capitalizing on early opportunity

These baseball players are making themselves right at home

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Jamey Carroll. Credit: Jeff Hanisch / U.S. Presswire.

Just another Clayton Kershaw gem in Dodgers' 5-1 victory

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Clayton Kershaw with a three-run lead heading into the seventh.

Could there be sweeter music to the Dodgers these days? Mozart meets Lennon.

It’s the closest thing the Dodgers will know to certain victory this season, and it worked just fine Thursday afternoon in the visiting Dodgers’ ultimate 5-1 victory over the Brewers.

The victory snapped Milwaukee’s six-game winning streak, and for the Dodgers salvaged the final game of the four-game series.

Kershaw fairly breezed through the game, cooling off a red-hit Brewers team that had won 19 of its last 21 games. And somehow he made it look easy.

Kershaw was dominant, and it’s getting to the point where that’s almost expected of the 23-year-old every outing.

Continue reading »

When the numbers look bad for the Dodgers

Lpn9o0nc The Dodgers didn't get to 52-62 by a twist of fate. First, a scroll through some bad numbers:

-- The Dodgers are 14-43 when the opposing team scores first.

-- They are 4-50 when they trail after six innings, 2-53 when they trail after seven and 1-57 when they trail after eight.

-- They are 14-50 when they score three or fewer runs.

-- They are 5-46 when they have fewer hits than their opponent.

-- In 22 games, Hong-Chih Kuo has a 12.46 ERA, and opponents are batting .296 against him.

-- Eugenio Velez is 0-for-19.

Continue reading »

Dee Gordon injures shoulder, but it's not considered serious

Dodgers-dee-gordon_640 There is a limit to these things, apparently.

Which didn't meant the Dodgers weren't staring down another you-have-got-to-be-kidding-me scare Saturday night in Phoenix when prized rookie shortstop Dee Gordon left the game in the third inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks because of an injured right shoulder.

A momentary pause here for those of you who still feel compelled to tilt back your head and scream into the night.

The fear was that he had separated -- or possibly even dislocated -- the shoulder, but after X-rays both scenarios were ruled out and he was left as day-to-day.

Gordon is so reed thin that an injury hardly seems unlikely. And the way the Dodgers have batted injury all season, it was nearly impossible not to expect the worst.

So however long Gordon is out, it won't seem as dark as it momentarily appeared.

The Dodgers had picked off Kelly Johnson in the third inning and had him in a rundown. Johnson dived back to first and Gordon dived to tag him, catching Johnson for the out but rolling awkwardly on his shoulder.

With Rafael Furcal dealt to St. Louis at the nonwaiver trading deadline, Gordon is scheduled to be the Dodgers' regular shortstop for the final two months of the season.

Jamey Carroll, who frequently filled in for injury-prone Furcal the past two years, took over for Gordon on Saturday.

ALSO:

The rising of Mike MacDougal: Feel free to breathe

Dodgers and Angels launguish in baseball's West Coast hitting doldrums

-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dee Gordon. Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

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