Results tagged ‘ NL West ’
And we’re here. The final part to our 2013 Dodgers spring preview will not focus on positions or players but the whole look at the Franchise. Hopefully the guide has given you an outlook on each position and answered some questions that you asked. Or maybe brought new questions to you regarding the 2013 Dodgers. This Off-Season the Dodgers took time fill the needs in order to not only make playoffs but win the NL West and contend for a World Series. They loaded up on pitching with the signings of Zack Grenkie, Hyun Jin Ryu, and J.P. Howell as well as re-signing Brandon League. They also hired Mark McGuire as batting coach to help improve the batting, An issue that the Dodgers had last season. Los Angeles done a lot in the off-season and it shows that they want to win the whole thing. Will they do it though? That’s something we all want to know. Before we drive right into the final take a few question and answers that should help. Now about a few weeks ago I asked some fans on twitter and Facebook what questions they had about this Dodgers team.
From @LAno1sportsfan via Twitter- Will Luis Cruz will play 3rd base for the rest of the season or do the Dodgers eventually make a move for a 3rd Baseman at some point?- Well to be honest it really depends on Cruz really. You have to look at it like this…If Cruz can repeat what he did last season and what he’s doing during Spring Training then yes he’s going to be there but once he struggles OR has an injury that keeps him out or something then most likely. I don’t think they’ll trade for one if Cruz struggles because look at who they have on the bench that can play that position but that’s what I see.
From Victoria Nunez who asks If Crawford isn’t ready by Opening Day, who will take up left field- That has been a question we’ve been asking since the end of the season really. My mind keeps shifting because a part of me think Crawford will be ready and another don’t see him ready till mid April maybe first week of May. Anyways if Carl Crawford isn’t ready then I believe Skip Schumaker will take his place. It’s a tough toss-up because you have Jerry Hariston there as well as Alex Castellanos but I really see Schumaker there come opening day but don’t be surprised if Mattingly platoons at Left till Crawford comes back.
@KingBilly via Twitter- Besides Kershaw and Greinke, what other starter do you see having a good/great season ?- I really believe Josh Beckett will have a good season. Many don’t think about Beckett as much but he did have a solid season when he was traded to Los Angeles. I think that along with him being in the NL (A Pitchers League), Pitching at Dodgers Stadium (Pitchers park), as well as a change of scenery will really help him out. Beckett won’t put up Cy Young numbers like that but he will be a solid Number 3 and that’ll be enough to help the Dodgers win.
@Dodgersrules1 via Twitter- are the dodgers going to trade harang or chris capuano- Right now with all the injuries It’s probably not wise to trade either at this point but I do see them getting traded. Eventually I do see both getting traded but at the right price. Depends on who needs Starting Pitching and everything.
Now that all the questions are out the way lets hit the home stretch. With everything the Dodgers did in the off-season and last summer, Is it enough for the Dodgers to win the NL West? If you look at the NL West it’s really bound to be interesting. The hated San Fransisco Giants brings back everyone (Pretty much) and Arizona spending on pitching nothing will come easy for the Dodgers. Los Angeles has some questions with the health of players and positioning especially at Left Field. I believe it comes down to if this team can be consistent and healthy enough to win the division. On paper they’re contenders but can this team keep it together to win the NL West and more? I think they will based on what I’ve seen during spring training and the World Baseball Classic. ultimately it will come down to pitching and that’s what will carry this Dodger team to a NL West title.
Not only is there questions with the team but there’s questions with the Manager as well. Many people question if Don Mattingly is the right guy for the job. Don Mattingly have been the Dodgers manager since 2011, When the Dodgers were going through its worst times with the franchise. Mattingly has gotten his team through the worst of things and the next year came close to leading this team to the Playoffs. I believe the Dodgers front office will wait and see what he’ll do with this team before deciding if they should sign him back to manage this team. I do believe he can be the right guy but he will have to gel all this talent together. He has the staff and players so there’s no more excuses for Mattingly not to succeed with this team.
So there you have it. We made it through the Spring preview. We broke down the positions, answered the questions, and took a look at a few things with the team. With all of that out the way we can now let the team go out on the field for their 2013 campaign and answer everything for us. On to Opening Day We Go!!!
I’m going to take a few minutes to talk about something that I’m sure all Baseball fans out in the west coast (Basically California coast) can agree with me on and that is the landscape shift in Baseball. You see most of the time you have either the East (Yankees, Red Soxs, Phillies, Braves) or Midwest (Brewers, Cardinals, Cubs, White Soxs, ) Ruling the baseball world and getting most of the attention and well deserved because of how they play and the division. From the last year or 2 that landscape is slowly but surely moving out to the west. About a year ago after the Angels signed Albert Pulojs and CJ Wilson I said that the baseball landscape would shift once the Dodgers get their new owners. So far I was right but I didn’t expect the extra stuff like the Dodgers trading for Hanley, Adrian, Beckett, and Crawford as well as becoming very active in the Trade Market during the season, The A’s beating out the Texas Rangers and The Angels to win the AL West, The Giants winning the Division and World Series (YUCK!!!) and the Padres got new ownership in the O’Mally’s (Former Dodgers owners and Yes the Family of the great Walter O’Mally). Baseball in California is getting interesting and moving on up.
You might be wondering how is that happening? Well let me go ahead and point it out for you. If you look at it right now the Yankees, Who would use to get pretty much any player they want, haven’t been really signing players like that and teams like the Dodgers and Angels this winter have been very active in the market. The Dodgers currently have a larger Payroll than the Yankees. YES THE YANKEES!!! Star players like Zack Grenike (Dodgers), Josh Hamilton (Angels), Albert Pujols in 2011(Angels) are moving to the west due to the Angels and Dodgers having the money to grab those big time players. The rivalries are also starting to grab more attention out west. The Yankees/Red Soxs has lost it’s luster due to the Red Sox’s decline and last season the Dodgers/Giants were in a heated Division race through out the summer. While the Red Sox/Yankees will have that historical bad blood the Giants/Dodgers will most likely be a divisional battle every year as will the A’s up and coming in the same division as the Star studded Angels will be something to keep an eye out for as well. Interleague out west is also starting to grab the attention of a lot of baseball fans. The Freeway Series with the teams the Dodgers and Angels have is starting to become a must see. If things go their way then the Freeway Series could go as far as a World Series Match up. Field wise the Yankees records were at least one W/L better than the A’s and Giants who went on hot streaks down the stretch. Think of it One and I don’t even like the Giants but it’s not about that right now. The Dodgers and Angels barely missed the playoffs which was disappointing for each teams fan base because of the current roster. What about San Diego you ask? Well now that they have new ownership it leaves the potential for them to become something in the NL West. While they won’t be like the Dodgers or anything in terms of ownership and having a major impact the O’Mally’s are no stranger operating a MLB Team. They have the challenge of not only fielding a team that can compete but filling the seats at Petco Park. The Padres played role of the spoiler towards the end and won 78 Games which gives the new ownership something to build on.
While I am a Dodger fan and live out in Los Angeles I am not blind at whats going on here. Yes the media will always have some east coast bias to it and the results on the field will have to back me up but the shift is starting to happen. We already seen a team have a higher payroll than the New York Yankees (Dodgers). It’s all right there. Weather you agree or disagree Is solely up to you but I can tell you in my opinion the West is starting to become an attention grabber so far and if the results on the field are what we hope it is then watch out.
Yesterday morning the Dodgers made the official announcement that they have hired Mark McGwire as the hitting coach. Something that has been rumored since last Friday has now come to light yesterday. Ok he may not be on the field anymore but this is a big thing to have Mark McGwire come in and help a Dodger team who struggled to bring in runs let alone score runs or get on base. The Cardinals, Where he formaly played, had good success under him batting .269 (1st in NL), Had a OBP of .337 (1st in NL) and scored 2,263 runs (2nd in NL) so there is success right there. The Dodgers who struggled in all those things will finally have a hitting coach that can get the bats going and make them a big threat offensively. A lot of people are happy for this being done and we assume things will go right but Is this really going to help? I for one say yes he can and will help the Dodgers.
Last season many people wanted to know what the issue was with the offense. We got that Kemp was hurt along with Mark Ellis and had a team filled with the Isatopes but once they got healthy they still struggled with batting thats adding Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez. Having a guy who was barley batting .22o as pinch hitter in his playing career will not do it’s justice in my eyes and apperently I wasn’t the only one. Many felt Hansen was a problem so he has another position in the franchise leaving Mark Mcgwire to get the job. As I stated the Cardinals had some very good numbers in the NL with McGwire as their hitting coach so you can only imagine what this team will do come next season with the line up of Adrian Gonzalez, Hanley Ramirez, Matt Kemp, Luis Cruz, Andre Ethier, Carl Crawford and so on. Yeah we know his history as a player and what not but him as a coach is just what the doctor ordered.
I believe there will be good results from this hiring and the Dodgers can be the dangerous team with the bat that they’re expected to be so be ready to see a lot of McGwire jerseys at Dodger Stadium. Will he make an Impact? Yes he will but that’s just my thinking and based off stats that the previous team he coached. Once Spring Training and the Season starts we’ll have our answer.
This is the most crutial part of the season once again and this Time the Dodgers are on the road with their Playoff lives on the line. Los Angeles split the series with the St Louis Cardinals 2-2 in a 4 Game series. A team that’s now 1 Game ahead of them in the Wild Card Standings. Now things go on the road with teams who are leading their Divisions and teams who the Dodgers beat earlier in the season. Cincinatti Reds and Washington Nationals will get the Dodgers in a very Important time for LA. They must keep winning in order to take the Wild Card and play their way into the Playoffs but thats easier said than done. With the recient Struggles and Injuries hitting the Dodgers They SOMEHOW managed to stay one game out of the Wild Card and SOMEHOW Snapped out of their funk beating the Cardinals on Friday and Saturday that gave more new hope to the Dodgers Playoff chances.
Now before you go one and tell me how tough these teams are and it’s all doom and gloom let me remind you that the Dodgers record on the east coast is monster. While the road on the west has been unkind the Eastern Zone has been a lot more forgiven to the Dodgers so that gives something for LA to look forward too. Yes the Nationals and Reds are playing great but I have a good feeling about this road trip. What Worries me about the trip is what Dodger team is going to show up. Where will pitching be? Will the Bats be in order? Will there be effort? That’s what I’ve been asking through out this time. If Yes Then the Dodgers will at least come back to LA Still a game behind, Tied, or In the 2nd Wild Card Spot. If No then honestly the Dodgers Playoff chances are basically over and done with.
Yes the NL West is out of site but if the Dodgers make the Playoffs then I can live with that. This Road Trip is HUGE Right Now and this where the Dodgers MUST and I do mean MUST play with everything from now to the last out of the World Series. Los Angeles Dodgers Your Fans ask for you to come back to Los Angeles with a Winning record and continue to take care of you. As long as thats done then Playoffs is right there in your sight.
It’s Time For Dodger Baseball!!! Everyone knows that line when Dodger games come on and no one says it better than Vin Scully. For 62 Seasons Vin Scully has been with the Dodgers franchise and has gone no where since then. From Brooklyn to Los Angeles he’s stuck through thick and thin. He’s already had a legendary career and next season that career will continue to be in the press box of Dodger stadium. As it was noted Vin Scully will return for his 63rd season with the Dodgers and I couldn’t be any more happier to type this. I usually share my Baseball talk but this is bigger than baseball in my eyes. A man who’s been with the Dodgers for pretty much his whole career is simply amazing to words I can’t even speak of. As a Dodger fan growing up whenever you couldn’t make it to the Stadium or on West coast Road trips you heard the voice of Vin Scully and his stories that he told in-between pitches. Even telling us about the player playing.
Growing up as a Dodger fan you always heard the voice of Vin Scully which is truly an amazing thing that we should all be thankful for. In the future most of us will be telling stories about Vin Scully and how we heard/watched games with him broadcasting. I honestly believe theres no one better in baseball than Vin Scully. Truly the best ever and I’m glad that we will get him back next year to call his 63rd Season.
Last night the Dodgers were swept by the San Francisco Giants. Typing that sentence left a bad taste in my mouth. In the 3 games against the Giants the Dodgers struggled offensively with the bats and also saw Joe Blanton and Chris Capuano implode. Overall it was a struggle. It’s funny how the Dodgers are struggling at home yet do so well on the Road. As I stated in an earlier blog i said the Dodgers can get into the post season and while I still believe that my frustration for this team is at an all time high. Maybe because we lost the lead to the Giants, maybe because The Dodgers were swept by them, Maybe because The Dodgers showed lack of fight lack of urgency in the series, Maybe all of the above but the fact remains I’m frustrated along with other Dodger fans.
The Dodgers after having a great road trip went up 1/2 Game in the NL West and coming home with a chance to add on against the Giants who had No Melky Cabrera due to a 50 Game suspension testing for PED’s. Instead of taking advantage the Dodgers got swept and how they got swept was where I had a problem and still do. I get that there 37 games left and anything can happen in baseball I completely understand that but let’s get something straight here this series was a chance to do damage coming off the road trip. Let’s not forget that this is also the second time the Dodgers had an opportunity in an important series at home after the break and failed to take advantage (Arizona series after sweeping the giants in SF). We all want this team to win but on the field it looks as if they really don’t want it. You can talk about it but you have to want it every game and every chance You get! The Dodgers have to look themselves and at each other and say Do We Want This?! If they do then go out and do it and not just talk about it. I can’t sit here and sugar coat anything the Dodgers flat out blew it and we’re not happy with that nor the play on the field in that series. I’m really tired of having other teams Do our work when the Dodgers had a chance to do it Themselves.
Again I have lost 0 faith in the Dodgers and I still believe they can make the Playoffs and do more but this blowing opportunities has got to stop. I’m upset the Dodgers played like they did and against the Giants of all teams. If they want to do damage then Starting tomorrow the have to turn it around because with the Diamondbacks coming to LA again and a September trip to SF the Dodgers must prove that they want it and it starts against Miami. Mission October isn’t over but that series did hurt Los Angeles.
The Dodgers right now find themselves in a race for the Postseason. Something that All Dodger fans been wanting. A chance to once again compete for the World Series, something that’s been missing since 1988. We usually hear about the Yankees, Red Soxs issues, Rangers, Braves, or the hated Giants and Angels but here’s my question. What about us? The Dodgers may have a roller coaster ride going along the way but the point being that the Dodgers still have a shot at reaching the postseason baring some epic collapse (We pray that they don’t.) But the question remains the same. Can the Boys in Blue Do it?
Dodgers made moves to help the offense out by acquiring Hanley Ramirez from Miami and then grabbing lead off guy Shane Victorino from Philadelphia and while they tried to make a push a starting pitching (Putting a claim on Cliff Lee) they did show that they weren’t playing around and that they want to win right now. Yes August is shaky so far but it looks as if the Dodgers are starting to put it all together and with a critical series against the Braves and Giants coming up getting it together is really really needed at this time. We often said/Heard Starting Pitching is needed to win, our Bullpen is killing us, Too inconsistent which cam be true but if the Dodgers get it together and stay healthy then this team can make noise. Now in my honest of honest opinions I believe the Dodgers can do it because this team have shown what it can do. Why not us? Dodgers can be just as good even though they don’t show it sometimes. It’s not be being a homer or anything but I believe that the Dodgers can do it this year.
Can the Dodgers do it? I think so and I know all of Los Angeles think so and so far it’s been a story. Going from having horrible owners, 3rd place finishes, More news off the field than on it, Angels talk to having a shot at Postseason, new owners, making moves to win now and so on. The ultimate goal is a World Series. Winning the NL West will be good but Settling for that isn’t enough. Let’s Bring Home A World Series! Back to where it belongs, Dodgertown!!
Oh how sweep it is?! That’s right the Dodgers did something that was highly needed to get back into this thing and that was Sweep the hated San Francisco Giants. Not only did They sweep them but Shut them out two consecutive games and held them scoreless 20 straight innings. With the sweep of the Giants the Dodgers are now tied for the NL West lead and with plenty of baseball left every game is important but it’s always sweet when you beat your rival….at that sweep them but eyes must be on the prize for the Dodgers as they’re playing for the NL West, Post Season, and more!
As we move away from the last series the Dodgers FINALLY return home for a home stand vs the Arizona Diamondbacks and Chicago Cubs. Arizona will be a very critical series for the Dodgers because Arizona is also not far back as well so winning the series for the Dodgers is very huge here. Tonight Aaron harang is on the hill against Trevor Cahill so tonight will be an interesting one. Tomorrow is also Kirk Gibson Bobblehead night which is fitting because the DBacks are in town and their manager is Kirk Gibson. It’ll be a huge night for Kirk as they honor him and his accomplishments as a Los Angeles Dodger.
MORE TRADE TALK!!!! In a Span of days the Dodgers have been linked to Ryan Dempster, Hunter Pence, Shane Victorino, and Alfonso Soriano. Another arm is needed to help but the Dodgers are looking to grab another bat to bolster up the line up. As of today the Dodgers are in on Pence but looking like Soriano is likely. Either way it’s great to see the Dodgers in Trade talks as buyers and with the Trade deadline tomorrow look for the Dodgers to get something dome soon!
Tonight will be my first game as a season ticket holder so I’m very excited about that! Great to be apart of the Dodgers season ticket Holder family! Dodgers must keep this race tight or pull away and if the Dodgers can get deals done then it’ll be big for them!
Tonight is the start of a critical Series for both the Dodgers and Giants in San Francisco. The Dodgers who are coming off a loss to the St Louis Cardinals march into AT&T Park with a healthier team, Hanley Ramirez, Randy Choate, and down 3 games. Last time the Dodgers came to San Francisco they got swept and shutout. Two things that was very embarrassing because it’s one thing to get swept but to not score a run in a single game of the series is another. The Giants have also been hot since the break but are also going into the series coming off a loss as well. No doubt this weekend is huge.
Now the Dodgers who has had chances to trim the lead have done so but has so suffered 3 straight losses to the Cardinals in that 4 game series and now trail 3 games to the hated Giants. At this point The Dodgers can do at least these things to help. Beat the Giants 2 games out of 3 and trim the lead to a game or sweep the giants in San Francisco and tie them for the NL West lead. Anyway the Dodgers HAVE to win or risk being down 4,5, or 6 games which will really damage things. With the Dodgers healthy things should get really interesting and they know that this is a race to October so every game counts.
The Dodgers will get to face the Giants rotation of Matt Cain, Berry Zito, and Ryan Volgelsong which isn’t an easy task at all but if the Dodgers can get their offense going then there shouldn’t be an issue at all but the Dodgers have to do their job. Dodgers pitching also have to be ready and step up to the task of doing what they can to win the series in SF. Yesterday’s game the Dodgers pitching pretty much blew it for them. They can’t have a repeat of that tonight or they’ll be in a world of trouble.
This is BIG by all means and the Dodgers have to come ready to play and out play the Giants. San Francisco knows how much this series mean but the Dodgers have to want it more. This weekend is the time to bring the Game! No more excuses because this is the one game where they can’t afford to let things slip away. The Race for October goes through San Francisco tonight and will have to a few times but tonight is a Critical one.
As of Tuesday night the Dodgers, who many wondered if/when they will make a deal to help them out, struck gold in a Blockbuster Trade. The Dodgers acquired 3rd Baseman/SS Hanley Ramirez and LHP Randy Choate from the Miami Marlins for Nathan Eovaldi and a Minor League Pitcher. This was a move that came out of no where and surprised a lot of Dodger fans. There were rumors on Hanley earlier in the day on teams that could get Hanley but for the Dodgers to out of nowhere make the move to not only get a well needed bat but a Lefty in the bullpen. Knocking out two birds with one stone. Even though the Dodgers lost last night in 12 innings Ramirez and Choate didn’t disappoint at all.
While this is a big trade for the Dodgers there are some risk for Hanley Ramirez. One glaring one is his health. Ramirez when healthy is a major threat the Dodgers need especially seeing the Dodgers have a big pennate race and push for the playoffs. Also his consistency has been gone but I do believe the change of scenery will indeed help him out. As far as Randy Choate he brings that much needed help to the Bullpen. Playing on a championship Yankee team, Tampa Bay, and recently the Marlins Choate will help the Dodgers out here big time. Two Players that fulfill a two voids that we Dodger fans have been screaming for.
While this was a huge Move the Dodgers apparently aren’t done making moves. As Ned Coletti talked about in an interview they’re going to look to moves more moves to win now and with the Deadline being next week Something can be done. Look for Kasten and Coletti to work on getting another arm and another position player which will likely be at 1st Base and Left Field. Brace yourself Dodger fans because the Boys In Blue could strike again before or at the deadline.