The LaRussa factor

Don Newcombe at Camelback Ranch (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Angels at Dodgers, 1:05 p.m. (weather permitting)

It’s natural to speculate about which free-agent players the Dodgers might go after under new ownership, but one subject that hasn’t gotten as much talk is that of whom the next general manager might be.

Ned Colletti might need the Dodgers to at least win their division to survive the natural tendency for a new owner to hire a new lieutenant. If Colletti is replaced, logical successors include past or present Dodger executives like Kim Ng, De Jon Watson or Logan White.

However, the fact is that a revitalized Dodger franchise might be considered a prime target for some of the best active general manager candidates in baseball, if their contract status allows it.

To that end, Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com writes that if Steven Cohen ends up with the franchise, there’s talk that Tony La Russa will take an executive role, above the general manager’s office, such as team president. If so, that could discourage several possible general manger candidates, who might question whether they’d have as much decision-making authority as they’d otherwise expect.

“All of this is speculation; the bidding is not nearly complete,” Rosenthal writes. “But, as rival execs see it, a GM such as the Tampa Bay Rays’ Andrew Friedman or Arizona Diamondbacks’ Kevin Towers likely would not leave their current situations for limited autonomy in L.A.”

  • J.P. Hoornstra of the Daily News reported it was hailing at Camelback Ranch less than two hours before gametime today.
  • Ivan De Jesus Jr., who made a nice defensive play Saturday against the Giants and had been having a solid spring, has been sidelined indefinitely with an oblique strain. Kem Gurnick of MLB.com has details.
  • Non-roster invitee Alberto Castillo, who pitched for Arizona last year, was released by the Dodgers, according to Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A., who adds that Will Savage, Matt Chico and Ryan Tucker were sent to minor-league camp.
  • This memorable ESPN the Magazine cover of Tim Lincecum and Clayton Kershaw was passed along by Roberto Baly of Vin Scully Is My Homeboy. Seems to me the roles should have been reversed, but Kershaw is nothing if not a good sport.

  • Anonymous

    Obviously, Kershaw and Lincecum share a sense of humor about it all. But it’s worth noting that Clayton’s achievements are far superior to those of Lincecum at a comparable age.

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

      Yeah, that is cool actually. I like the “noogy” gag.

      • Anonymous

         Funny. What’s funnier is I imagine Timmy is standing on a riser for that pic.

    • Anonymous

      I resent the implication that the Giants are putting a whooping on our beloved boys in blue.

  • Anonymous

    Kershaw’s size advantage on Lincecum normally would give him an edge in giving out noogies.

  • Anonymous

    I, for one, look forward to the first TJ Simers interview of Tony La Russa. It would be hi-larious.

    La Russa’s home is in the Bay Area, so I think he wouldn’t necessarily be around Dodger Stadium a lot.

  • Anonymous

    LaRussa is fine with me if that means Kevin Towers stays away.

    • Anonymous

      I’d prefer Kevin Towers to LaRussa.  But I’d prefer Fawlty Towers to LaRussa as well.

      • Anonymous

        If we can’t have Magic, I would have preferred LaRusso (RIP).

  • Anonymous

    I am getting more and more interested in Josh Fields not only making the team but starting at third base.  Who else is hopeful that he can thrive this year with the Dodgers?

  • Anonymous

    LF   Rivera 
    RF   Ethier
    CF   Kemp
    1B   Loney
    3B   Fields
    2B   Ellis
    SS   Gordon
    C     Ellis

    I like different sometimes–and this lineup is different

    • http://twitter.com/Derek_TC Derek TC

      wowza

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

      I assume that’s not your proposed batting order, too, though. ;)

  • Anonymous

    Sans the uniform Lincecum looks like a laid back dude.

    • Anonymous

       Even with the uniform.

  • http://twitter.com/Derek_TC Derek TC

    I cannot believe that Kershaw took this  photo…Clayton should be the won giving Lincecum the noogie.

  • Anonymous

    Tim Lincecum sure is an ugly girl. 

  • Anonymous

    A good trade off if you ask me – Lincecum giving Kershaw a pretend noogy for Kershaw going 4-0 against Lincecum.

    • http://twitter.com/Derek_TC Derek TC

      I thought it was 5-0

      • Anonymous

        Kersh was 4-0 against Lincecum head-to-head, 5-0 against the Giants as a whole.

        Ridiculous picture.  Kershaw should be kicking him in the backside.

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

    Holy crap. From Bill Shaikin:
    Patrick Soon-Shiong, richest man in L.A. joins Steven Cohen’s#Dodgers bid group: 
    http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-0319-dodgers-magic-johnson-20120319,0,2090242.story

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

    NPUT

  • http://DoctorKeys.com/ Bruce Siegel

    “Kershaw is nothing if not a good sport.”

    That’s true, Jon, but I’m looking at that photo and thinking exactly the opposite. Everyone knows Lincecum got his butt kicked four straight times by Kershaw. So, regardless of who’s giving who the noogie, for Lincecum to appear together with Kershaw and remind everyone about what happened in 2011, he’s got to have a bit of humility, don’t you think?

    So I think it’s actually a pretty cool gesture on both their parts.