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Category: Tommy Davis

Dodgers community caravan scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday

Dodgersbig1Andre Ethier, James Loney and Dee Gordon will be among the players participating in the Dodgers’ annual community caravan Tuesday and Wednesday.

Newcomers Adam Kennedy and Jerry Hairston Jr. will be part of the community outreach effort, as will former players such as Fernando Valenzuela and Tommy Davis.

One stop on the two-day tour will be open to the public: lunch on Tuesday at a South Los Angeles location that will be revealed at the Dodgers’ Twitter account (@Dodgers) at 12:30 p.m. that day. The lunch will from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

On the caravan that day will be current players Gordon, Kennedy, Tony Gwynn Jr., Kenley Jansen, Josh Lindblom and Ramon Troncoso; former players Davis, Shawn Green, Al Ferrara and Dennis Powell; and broadcaster Eric Collins.

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-- Dylan Hernandez

That's a wrap: Dodgers complete longest season with 7-5 win

Kemp3
And that is your Dodgers’ 2011 season.

All the ownership ugliness, all the wondrous individual play of Clayton Kershaw and Matt Kemp, the lousy team start, the surprising team finish. All now done with.

The Dodgers wrapped it up Wednesday with a 7-5 victory over the Diamondbacks, completing their longest season at 82-79 -– only the second time all year they were three games above .500.

All the baseball craziness on Wednesday was left to those chasing wild-card berths. This one on a warm desert night had no significance, the Brewers winning earlier Wednesday to assure they would have homefield advantage over Arizona.

There was no stunning, final two-homer game by Kemp that enabled him to join the 40 home run, 40 stolen base club. He just settled for a final two-run homer.

Alas, Kemp ended up hitting .324 with 39 homers, 126 RBI, 114 runs and 40 stolen bases on the season. Otherwise, he just never could seem to get it going.

The homers, runs and RBI all led the league, and the 126 RBI are also the second highest total ever for a Los Angeles Dodger (Tommy Davis, 153, 1962).

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Jerry Sands and Dee Gordon, meanwhile, finishing on high note

Dee-gordon_600

Lost amid Matt Kemp’s pursuit of the hitting triple crown and Clayton Kershaw’s pitching triple crown, is a nice finishing surge by a pair of rookies.

Jerry Sands has a 12-game hitting streak, and Dee Gordon is only one behind him. And they’re reaching some noteworthy company.

Longest hitting streaks, L.A. Dodgers rookies:

1. 20 - Tommy Davis                          July 30-Aug. 20, 1960

2. 18 - Bill Sudakis                             July 31-Aug. 19, 1969

T-3. 16 - Andre Ethier                        July 26-Aug. 12, 2006

T-3. 16 - Steve Sax                            June 11-27, 1982

T-5. 14 - Raul Mondesi                       May 8-22, 1994

T-5. 14 - Raul Mondesi                       May 25-June 10, 1994

T-5. 14 - Mike Marshall                      July 22-Aug. 4, 1983             

8. 13 - Willy Aybar                             May 26-June 7, 2006

T-9. 12 - Mike Piazza                         Sept. 21-Oct. 3, 1993

T-9. 12 - Bob Lillis                             Sept. 12-26, 1958

T-9. 12 - Jerry Sands                         Sept. 12, 2011-current

The Dodgers have only four games left to their season, so even if Sands continues gets a hit in every game, the best he can finish on the list is tied for third.

Still, Sands is 12 for 46 (.435) in his streak, raising a batting average that was at .187 before it began to its current .330.

Gordon is 18 for 45 (.400) during his 11-game streak, raising his average to .298.

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-- Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers shortstop Dee Gordon puts the ball in play during a game against the Giants last week at Dodger Stadium. Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea / US Presswire

Jackie Robinson Day features panel discussion, Dodger Stadium ceremonies to honor No. 42

L0yaronc The Dodgers have scheduled a series of events Friday to honor the 64th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking baseball’s color barrier.

They’ll start off the day with 10 current and former Dodgers holding a panel discussion on Robinson’s effect on baseball and society at Crenshaw High School. Former Robinson teammate Don Newcombe, now a special advisor to Frank McCourt, will moderate the panel.

Also scheduled to appear at the Crenshaw assembly are Tommy Davis, Maury Wills, Lou Johnson and current Dodgers Matt Kemp, James Loney, Marcus Thames, Tony Gwynn Jr., Xavier Paul, and minor leaguer and Crenshaw alum Trayvon Robinson. It is closed to the public.

The Dodgers have also donated tickets to the entire Crenshaw student body for their game June 13 against the Reds.

"The Dodgers and Jackie Robinson have been a team for so many years and they remain a team today,’’ Newcombe said in a statement. "I look forward to helping the next generation of Americans learn all about who Jackie was and how much he means to so many people.’’

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Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp, Rafael Furcal, Don Mattingly and Steve Dilbeck to appear at Dodgers Community Caravan

You can spend Valentine’s Day with Andre Ethier.

Or, if you prefer, The Times' dashingly handsome Dodgers blogger, Steve Dilbeck.

Here’s the catch: You have to pick up garbage.

The Dodgers’ two-day community caravan will start Feb. 14 with a stop at the Los Angeles River, where Ethier, Don Mattingly, James Loney and Tom Lasorda will be part of a group cleaning up the banks of this majestic … ah, who are we kidding?

Fans who would like to pretend they were convicted of driving under the influence and forced to do community service can register to take part in the event at dodgers.com/caravan. Space is limited to the first 250 fans.

Participants for the second day of the caravan will include Matt Kemp, Rafael Furcal, Tony Gwynn Jr. and Fernando Valenzuela.

Here’s the caravan schedule:

Monday, Feb. 14

Participants: Mattingly, Ethier and Loney; former Dodgers Lasorda, Steve Garvey, Bobby Castillo, Tommy Davis, Kenny Landreaux and Rudy Law; Dodgers broadcaster Steve Lyons.

10 to 11:30 a.m. Los Angeles River Cleanup (Public must pre-register for a chance to participate)

The Dodgers in partnership with the Los Angeles City Council District 1, Councilmember Ed P. Reyes and Los Angeles Conservation Corps/Los Angeles River Keepers will clean up the banks of the L.A. River.

Dodgers fans must pre-register online to participate. The event is open to the first 250 registrants that sign up at www.dodgers.com/caravan.

Noon to 2:30 p.m. Visit to USC University Hospital, the Official Hospital of the Los Angeles Dodgers (Hospital employees only)

The Dodgers will join USC University Hospital public health workers for lunch as a thank you for their dedication to healthcare and research.

3 to 4 p.m. LACER (Literacy, Arts, Culture, Education and Recreation) at Thomas Starr King Middle School (Open to program participants)

LACER, a longstanding Dodgers community partner, provides after-school activities to underserved middle and high school youth. The Dodgers will join the LACER youth in playground activities and gardening.

5 p.m. Lopez Tonight Taping in Burbank

The Dodgers will make an appearance on George Lopez’s national show to share their community service experiences.

 
Tuesday, Feb. 15

Participants: Furcal, Kemp, Gwynn Jr., Jay Gibbons and Gabe Kapler; former Dodgers Valenzuela, Don Newcombe, Ron Cey, Derrel Thomas and Lou Johnson; Dodgers broadcasters Charley Steiner and Pepe Yniguez.

9:30 to 10 a.m. Los Angeles Fire Department, Station 3 (Open to media only)

LAFD Chief Millage Peaks, Councilman Tom La Bonge and Los Bomberos President Phillip Dominguez will join Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti and Furcal in announcing the donation of a LAFD fire truck to Furcal’s hometown Loma de Cabrera, Dominican Republic.

10:30 a.m. to noon Heal the Bay, Santa Monica (Public must pre-register for a chance to participate)

Dodgers fans will join the Dodgers on a Heal the Bay cleanup at Santa Monica beach. The event is open to the first 750 fans that register online at www.healthebay.org/events. Participants will receive a raffle ticket for a chance to win autographed baseballs, Dodgers tickets and raffle items at the day’s event.

12:30 to 2 p.m. West Valley LAPD (West Valley LAPD Personnel Only)

The Dodgers will join the officers at the West Valley LAPD station for lunch as a thank you for their service in protecting the greater Los Angeles Community.

2:30 to 3:30 p.m. High School Visit (Open to media only)

The Dodgers will surprise the baseball and softball teams of a local high school and offer playing tips and instruction.

4 to 5:15 p.m. Dodgers Dreamfield Dedication Ceremony at Northridge Recreation Center

The Dodgers Dream Foundation will dedicate its 10th Dodgers Dreamfield at the Northridge Recreation Center. Councilman Greig Smith will join, and youngsters from the community will participate in the field’s first clinic with the Dodgers, who will instruct them on the fundamentals of baseball.
 

-- Dylan Hernandez 

Remembering Willie Davis: Greatness too often ignored

Willie Willie Davis was guilty. No one could have known it better than him. Others said it, whispered it, wondered about it.

But Willie knew they found him guilty of not being a superstar.

He was a remarkable athlete who did some remarkable things for the Dodgers. Yet somehow with Willie, it seemed less about what he accomplished and more about what he did not.

He couldn’t hit as well as Tommy Davis, steal like Maury Wills. Didn’t have the commanding presence of Sandy Koufax or Don Drysdale. He seemed more a role player on the great Dodgers teams of the ’60s, though his flashes of greatness only seemed to leave others yearning for more.

Willie was called up when he was only 20 and played 13 years with the Dodgers, 17 major-league seasons overall. And when he passed away Tuesday, he was still the Los Angeles Dodgers all-time leader in hits, extra-base hits, total bases, plate appearances and triples.

He had a deep voice, distinctive laugh. For a man others claimed was always in search of himself as a player, he gave off the appearance of easy-going happiness.

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A love of baseball: an uncle's enduring gift

It can be a precious gift, presented without announcement, without expectation.

Finley2 Most often, a love of baseball is handed down from father to son, or daughter, but in my case it came from my uncle, Steve Ferraro.

Not sure how much Steve loved baseball compared with how much he loved the Dodgers, loved Vin Scully, loved picturesque Dodger Stadium.

There was no cable in his day, but he listened to every game. At night, his wife, Grace, might sit on the couch and watch "Gunsmoke’’ while he rested in his favorite chair, facing the television but listening with a single earphone attached to his small transistor radio to every pitch Sandy Koufax would seem to magically weave.

His brother was longtime L.A. City Councilman John Ferraro, and sometimes Steve would produce a pair of box seats to Dodger Stadium. Each time he would invite me, it was a mini-event.

Steve was normally reserved, and I’m not sure he ever felt completely comfortable around children. Normally, our drive up the Golden State Freeway from his home in Whittier was marked by long silences.

But that was OK, because we were sharing something unspoken. Nothing was forced but, much like baseball, played out at its own pace.

Steve insisted we always arrive in time for batting practice, and I could not imagine it being any other way. There would be a double bag of peanuts and a Dodger Dog. Steve bought me my own program and taught me how to score.

Sometimes, we’d be a couple rows back from Frank Sinatra, which was swell, but the celebrities to us were on the field. Don Drysdale looking mountainous on the mound, Maury Wills a blur on the bases, Tommy Davis a genius with the bat.

Scully’s voice beamed from thousands of radios and echoed softly throughout the stadium. We never left early. We took it all in. It was hard to get enough. Steve loved Sunday doubleheaders.

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