The Emerald City prepares for Hong-Chih Kuo


On the heels of Alex Belth’s feature on Hiroki Kuroda came this piece by Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times (via Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A.) on new Mariner lefty Hong-Chih Kuo. In the picture that runs with Baker’s article, I can’t say Kuo doesn’t look smart in that Seattle uniform, but maybe I just miss him.

… Kuo had battled a yips problem in 2009, then became arguably the game’s top reliever in 2010 with the Dodgers. In the interim, he’d worked with famed sports psychologist Harvey Dorfman to curtail his throwing issues.

But Dorfman passed away last February at age 75. By April, the yips troubles were once agan starting to overwhelm Kuo. He returned after the first DL stint, struggled again, then went back on the DL in May. I asked Kuo whether Dorfman’s death made it tougher for him to bounce back, since he could no longer phone him up for instant advice.

“Yes, it was hard,” he told me. “But you still have to fix it. It can’t come from somebody else.”

Then, he looked at me and pumped his chest with his fist.

“It has to come from inside here,” he said. “It has to come from inside me.” …

Elsewhere …

  • Ken Gurnick produced a status report on the Dodgers heading into Spring Training for MLB.com.
  • In its latest behind-the-scenes offseason video, ESPN.com checks in on Clayton Kershaw.
  • Dodger Thoughts softball teamer Matt Worland blogged at length about Saturday’s tournament. Here is part one and part two.
  • James Loney doesn’t look so bad, or as bad, now that the quality of National League first basemen has declined, writes Mike Petriello of Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness.
  • Twice-baked Dodger pitcher Jon Garland (remembered by Dodger Thoughts here) has signed a minor-league deal with Cleveland. He earned a $5 million base salary from the Dodgers in 2011.
  • Bob Timmermann posted a great historical piece on the Sports Arena at L.A. Observed’s Native Intelligence. I’d call it a must-read for any local sports fan.
  • More history: Mary Mallory of the Daily Mirror looks back at Eaton’s Rancho, which one sat at the corner of Laurel Canyon and Ventura Boulevard, currently home to a McDonald’s.
  • A soundtrack for season two of Treme goes on sale April 17 (and has just been added to my wish list). Here’s a link to the season-one soundtrack.
  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    It’s no Jan Smithers in a dunk tank, but Elisabeth Shue just gave me reason to watch 90 seconds of CSI.

    http://insidetv.ew.com/2012/02/13/csi-get-a-first-look-at-elisabeth-shue-exclusive-video/

  • http://twitter.com/nrmnbates Eric Enders

    In the video, Kershaw cops to listening to April Lavigne. Yikes.

  • http://twitter.com/nrmnbates Eric Enders

    Er, Avril.

  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    Well, this is one way to start a sidebar on Whitney Houston’s death. And note the choice of picture.

    http://bit.ly/y1KVgw

    * * *

    Whitney Houston’s death is a tragedy in pretty much every way, but the singer’s demise may have a silver lining for Dolly Parton.

    Wait, make that a gold lining.

  • Anonymous

    Kuoatomatic in a Mariner’s Uni., it’s going to be odd…

    Hope for nothing but the best for him man.

  • Anonymous

    Nice to hear from you Eric E.  :0)

  • Anonymous

    The Cubbies are in the market for Ramon Ortiz. No word yet about the other R. Ortiz.

    • http://underdog.typepad.com/ underdog

      What did Cubs fans do to deserve that??

  • http://underdog.typepad.com/ underdog

    This exchange on Twitter made me chuckle…

    Dee Gordon skinnyswag9:
    “YonderalonsoU: @skinnyswag9 was up buddy!!! Hope u good c u soon man!!!!” yesssiiirrr! How you doing big dawg?

    Yonder Alonso @YonderalonsoU:
    @skinnyswag9 doing good man!! Getting ready almost D-day getting pumped!!! And u? Tell me you’ve gained some weight since last year haha

    Dee Gordon @skinnyswag9: 
    @YonderalonsoU bruh I’m like 265 lol

    Yonder Alonso @YonderalonsoU: 
    @skinnyswag9 yes!!!!! Hahaha u still got MAD swag!!

    • http://underdog.typepad.com/ underdog

      No, spelling does not count when athletes tweet. You get the gist…

      • Anonymous

        Also from Dee Gordon:
        CloseLadies a word of advice… Don’t let any guy take you out on Feb. 15th!!! That’s #SideChickDAY!!!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    I just was reading about the tourney — sounds like fun — especially playing with all Dodger fans. Everybody I play with here in Norcal all wear Giants gear. Hate seeing that in my face all the time… 

    • Anonymous

       Maybe next year we could try to put together a softball game of Dodger bloggers versus Giant bloggers during spring training in Arizona or even this year if someone is motivated to put it together quickly.

  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    For WBB:
    Swedish helmer created ‘Safe’ haven
    http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118050201

    • Anonymous

       Thanks for this, Jon. Is “helmer” derived from the Swedish?

  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    NPUT