Tonight’s feature presentation: Obscure but memorable cleanup hitters

Jay Gibbons is batting cleanup tonight for the third time as a Dodger. That would not have seemed likely a month ago, but Gibbons is far from the most unlikely Dodger cleanup hitter of the past seven seasons. Who’s your favorite from this list?

Dodger cleanup hitters since 2004
2010:
James Loney (50 games), Matt Kemp (43), Manny Ramirez (41), Casey Blake (7), Jay Gibbons (3), Andre Ethier (2).

2009: Blake (43), Ethier (42), Kemp (27), Ramirez (26), Loney (21), Russell Martin (3).

2008: Jeff Kent (74), Loney (28), Ramirez (25), Martin (18), Blake (8), Ethier (3), Nomar Garciaparra (3), Andruw Jones (2), Mark Sweeney (1).

2007: Kent (132), Luis Gonzalez (20), Loney (6), Martin (1), Mike Lieberthal (1), Olmedo Saenz (1), Shea Hillenbrand (1)

2006: J.D. Drew (83), Kent (59), Saenz (7), Ethier (5), Garciaparra (3), Kemp (2), Loney (1), Joel Guzman (1), Ricky Ledee (1).

2005: Kent (110), Saenz (26), Ledee (10), Jason Phillips (8), Jose Cruz, Jr. (3), Jayson Werth (2), Hee-Seop Choi (1), Mike Edwards (1), Milton Bradley (1).

2004: Adrian Beltre (92), Shawn Green (63), Milton Bradley (3), Saenz (2), Juan Encarnacion (1), Robin Ventura (1).

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Al LaMacchia, the 1940s major-leaguer who became a scout for six decades thereafter, finishing up with the Dodgers, has passed away at the age of 89.

Bill Plaschke of the Times shone a light on LaMacchia when he talked about the scout’s recommendation that the Dodgers acquire Andre Ethier — a column that (and I certainly mean no disrespect to LaMacchia) inspired this response from Fire Joe Morgan.

My most sincere condolences to LaMacchia’s family and friends.

* * *

Today is the 30th anniversary of Fernando Valenzuela’s major-league debut, notes Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. The Dodgers will pay tribute to the occasion on Sunday’s game.

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