Dodger Thoughts

Jon Weisman's outlet for dealing psychologically with the Los Angeles Dodgers, baseball and life

It’s time for more softball and Les Nessman

We are only at T-minus 43 hours for the start of the Dodger Bloggers Softball Tournament, featuring 14 teams and close to 200 players representing Dodger websites hither and yon.

Like the other squads, the Dodger Thoughts team will be playing at least three games, starting at 9 a.m. Saturday at Big League Dreams in West Covina. The tournament itself starts at 8 a.m.

As the de facto manager, a role I intend to embrace with all the intermingled enthusiasm and sleepiness of a 1990s Tommy Lasorda, I am here to tell you that I am in little to no condition to play three softball games in one day, let alone more if our ragtag bunch propels us into the playoffs Saturday afternoon. Though there was a time I played every week, I don’t believe I have swung a bat in the two years since the last time I played in a game, a game that left me sore in one particular place for about a month afterward. On the bright side, in November I started jogging again, and have regularly been running four miles a … well, week. So by the time Saturday’s games are over, I might not be fit to drive home, or even walk from the driveway through the front door. Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to a good time out in those fields of dreams.

Every now and then, I dip into the prodigious comments of True Blue L.A., where you can find ongoing parsing of the nuances of Saturday’s events and a passion normally reserved only for hallowed occasions like Festivus. It is for that reason that I have labeled theirs as the WPIG squad and ours as the WKRP team, recalling the classic softball game of WKRP in Cincinnati (see video up top). Don’t be surprised to see me, like Dr. Johnny Fever, playing left-center in the comfort of a lawn chair. But at the same time, don’t be surprised if Dodger Thoughts players like David Guerreva, David Higgins, James Higgins, Anthony Mason, Brian Rafeedy, Eric Velazquez, Mary Whitfield, Matt Worland and the Dodger Thoughts commenter known as Xeifrank are poised to shock the world. I’ll tell you this, True Blue L.A.: You don’t want to see us in the finals, unless you’re there to apply sunscreen to our winning faces.

If you’re in the neighborhood, come on by — should be a fun, fun day.


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  1. Man, re-watching that clip and listening to Les’ final monologue: I am five years older than Les was when he caught the final out.

  2. I would probably be in similar softball shape as you Jon. Although I play soccer regularly, it’s been awhile since I’ve swung a bat or played a soft- or baseball game and many different kinds of muscles are used. Stretch everything before and after! Ice it off. And try not get beaned. ;)

    Wish I could be there, sounds like fun. I’ll watch it on ESPN Classic later.

    Props for the WKRP plug, too.

  3. That seals it. Bailey was officially hotter than Jennifer. Man oh man.

  4. Hoping to live-tweet the action, just like LeBron would.

  5. Anonymous

    Will be there with bells on and ready to play in 3-6 games whatever the softball Gods have us do.  Should be able to play in all games with no problems as long as one of Vin Scully’s Homeboys doesn’t hit a line drive off my knee or forehead.  As long as there is some ice and a first aid kit in the dugout we should be good to go as a team.  Look forward to competing (for fun) and meeting all of my fellow teammates and opponents.
    vr, Xei

  6. Anonymous

    I’m thinking of dropping by to watch a game or two. My loyalties can be bought. In fact, they’re on sale for a limited time.

  7. If you just do Matt Kemp’s workout regimen this week, I’m sure you’ll be fine. Easy peezy lemon squeezy. (was just on today)

  8. John Giovanazzi

    We may not win any games, but Team SOSG will always win the party.

    • Hideo Nomo

      Our strategy is to not win so we can get to the drinkin’ earlier. 

      It helps that I’m more softball-shaped than in softball shape.

    • snn

      Yeah, I hear those SOSG guys/gals are a bit…..ODD!

  9. Phil Gurnee

    Shame we won’t get to play the Dodger Thoughts squad. I’m glad Xeifrank was able to find a team that would take a waiver chance after he was cut from the TBLA squad. 

  10. Phil Gurnee

    Our strategy is attrition 

  11. Hideo Nomo

    Looking forward to getting a chance to meet you Jon, even though Team SoSG wouldn’t face you unless we both made the playoffs.

  12. Anonymous

    Of the main cast, Jan Smithers (30) was the youngest at the time of the filming this episode and Gordon Jump was the oldest at 47.  Most of the actors were in their mid to late 30s.

  13. Anonymous

    I’m going to the Torrance Batting Cages this evening after work, if anyone wants to get some BP in before the big day.  There are also a few batting cages at BLD if anyone wants to get some last-minute BP before our championship quest commences at 9.

    • Anonymous

      Like the commitment.  I won’t be doing anything of the sort, but glad someone is

  14. Look forward to seeing everyone and Jon out there on Saturday. Weather should be nice with high’s in the 60’s. I’ll be on the squad and look forward to facing all of you in the playoffs ;). Cya all on Saturday!

  15. Anonymous

    A Jan Smithers thread…DT is back, baby.

  16. Anonymous

    Very much looking forward to this, not only playing but meeting a lot of people whose writings I’ve been reading for so long.

  17. Anonymous

    I am trying
    A) to avoid injury,
    B) to avoid embarrassment, and
    C) to avoid losing

    I am happy with any combo of two (as long as the injury has a good story to pain and recovery ratio)

  18. Eric Nusbaum

    Question: Is the Dodger Thoughts team the Dodgers of the Dodgers Bloggers Softball Tournament?

  19. As the honorary captain of Team Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness (the estimable Mr. Petriello lives in New York and can’t be here this weekend), I’m here to talk smack. Unfortunately,  I’m not very good at it, and wish all participating teams the best of luck. I’m looking forward to meeting many of my favorite writers, including you, Jon. It should be a really fun day, for a good cause.

  20. Anonymous

    I’m still recovering from my hip surgery last November, so I’m not in mid-season form.  But I’m bringing a good group to the tourney.  
    At the Habitat build, I mentioned the tournament to team photographer Jon Soohoo.  Don’t know if he’ll make it out there or not, but it would be cool if he were able to take some high quality photos. 

    Brag Dept:  If you’ve never played at a Big League Dreams before, you’re in for a treat.  Here’s the Washington Post piece I did about my first visit.

    Looking forward to seeing you all Saturday.

  21. overkill94

    Wish I could’ve made it out but I’ll be participating in a different sort of athletic endeavor – evaluating 10-12 year olds in my hometown of Visalia in order to lead the mighty Orioles to yet another championship!

    I’ve been itching for some softball too.  Now that my shoulder’s finally healed, my softball team broke up :(

  22. Anonymous

    As I just stated on TBLA, I will buy one of Jon’s great 100 Things Dodger Fans books to be given to the MVP of the Softball tournament.  That should spark some interest.

  23. I actually did some a promotional spot for my book at Big League Dreams, for KTLA’s morning show. Wonder if that clip is anywhere. 

  24. Looks like it’s no longer there:

  25. Please, Jon, don’t wear Tommy’s gold sunglasses.

    I’ll drive from Carson City if Jan Smithers shows up to umpire.

  26.  Christopher Plummer and Frank Langella sign up to play Supreme Court Justices in Muhammad Ali film HBO is developing

  27. John Blanchard

    Woo! Go SOSG! This is the frickin’ coolest thing for all of the Dodger fans on these blogs.

    LFP frickin’ rules. Food Bank, yeah!

  28. Anonymous

    Checking in here.  I’ll always be loyal to DT – the first Dodger blog I ever encountered.  I still read every day but haven’t really posted anything of substance since the Toaster.  (I do have fond memories of the DT picnic in Elysian Park, and stuck around long enough for the whiffle ball game and Matt Luke).

    Anyway, I’ll be playing and “managing” the VSIMH Team #2, which will be playing DT in game 3 at 2 pm.  Will be good to meet the DT crew – and I’ll actually get to meet Xeifrank in person!  Hopefully, you can consider me an “old friend” now that I’m playing for a different squad.

  29. Anonymous

    As long as I don’t fall out of the bleachers there is a pretty good chance that I MIGHT come away from this thing uninjured. I’ll be there cheering on Team OpinionOfKingmansPerformance. I’m also working on trying to get a former Dodger or two out there, but no guarantees on that (yet).

  30. Anonymous

    Wish I didn’t live in Texas it would be great to be out there playing for someone and watching the rest! I was never aware of these replica fields when I was in LA, but’s it’s been oh 15 years now…

  31. Anonymous

    The Gnats’ brain trust is worried about TMAEITW:

  32. My 3-year-old is wearing an Eric Gagne giveaway mini-jersey. Ah, hand-me-downs.

  33. Anonymous

    So an LA Times columnist lets us in on a “dirty little secret” that pro athletes look at their jobs as “jobs” and don’t take winning or losing as seriously as fans do. 

    Good thing that writer wasn’t in charge of shutting down Rick’s Cafe Americain if Major Strasser ordered it.

  34. My crush on Michelle Dockery of Downton Abbey only increases … here she is on Letterman last night

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