Dodger Thoughts

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

Dodgers dumped in crazy Coors Field finish

You can’t say Dodger games aren’t exciting these days. Not sure I’ve seen this linescore in the final two innings before …

Dodgers 001 000 022 - 5
Rockies 000 011 033 - 8

Jason Giambi’s pinch-hit, three-run home run off Scott Elbert ended the game of leapfrog in the bottom of the ninth, giving Colorado an 8-5 victory over Los Angeles.

The frolic began after the Dodgers, who took a 1-0 lead in the third when Mark Ellis drove home A.J. Ellis with a single, fell behind on solo homers off Clayton Kershaw (who brought a career ERA at Coors Field of 5.88 into the game) by Carlos Gonzalez in the fourth and Wilin Rosario in the fifth. It remained that way after Jerry Hairston Jr. was erroneously called out to end the sixth.

In the top of the eighth, Hairston got another chance after singles by newly crowned NL April Player of the Month Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier — and delivered a two-run double for a 3-2 lead.

Kershaw had only thrown 81 pitches to that point and looked like he might be a good bet for a complete-game victory, but it didn’t happen.  He allowed three runs, capped by Gonzalez’s second homer of the game — the first time in Kershaw’s career he’s allowed a homer hat trick to another team.

But even against Rafael Betancourt, who had allowed one run in 10 innings all season, the Dodgers weren’t done. Adam Kennedy, whose .095 batting average nearly mirrored Betancourt’s 0.90 ERA, singled. Two outs later and with Kennedy stuck on first, the Rockies walked Kemp intentionally rather than give him the chance to tie the game with one swing. (For Kemp, it was the sixth game of at least three walks in his career, something I predicted after noting Juan Rivera batting behind him and a left-hander starting the game.

That brought to the plate Dee Gordon, who was in the cleanup spot thanks to a double switch in the previous inning. On a 2-2 pitch, Gordon doubled and tied the game at 5.

Jamey Wright, who had finished the eighth inning for the Dodgers, came back out in the ninth and immediately dug a hole by walking Eric Young, Jr. and Marco Scutaro.  A sacrifice bunt later, Giambi came up in place of Dexter Fowler, and Scott Elbert — whose career lowpoint came at Coors Field two Mays ago — gave up the game-winning blast on a 1-0 fastball.


Revisited: Bad calls happen all the time


Matt Kemp and .400: One in a million


  1. Anonymous

    So, are baseballs still kept in the humidor or did that idea fall by the wayside? 

  2. Anonymous

    The humidor balls are only used when the Rockies are in the field.

  3. Kershaw has shown to be even more unsuited to Coors than most pitchers. The Dodgers could have made sure he wouldn’t pitch there by giving Eovaldi a start before sending him down. Is it worth shuffling the rotation in the future so Kershaw doesn’t pitch there?

    • Anonymous


    •  Not in my view. I like Eovaldi but I’d still bet on Kershaw.

      Even today, Kershaw allowed two runs in his first seven innings.That’s excellent. In a way, Kershaw was victimized by his own success today. It’s not as if Eovaldi would have likely done better.

  4. Anonymous

    I like deadspin’s description of the missed call by Tim Welke – “… the throw pull[ed] Todd Helton so far off the bag that he was officially playing second, not first, base.”

  5. Anonymous

    Pitchers duel in Atlanta. Halladay vs Hanson.

    It’s 12-12 in the 8th.

  6. Anonymous

    13-12 Braves headed to the 9th.

  7. Anonymous

    13-13 going to the bottom of the 9th in Atlanta.

    • Anonymous

      Echoes of Spahn and Marichal.

      • Anonymous

        Braves win 15-13 in 11 innings on a 2-run homer by Chipper Jones.

  8. Anonymous

    The Dodgers are talking to Bobby Abreau. Makes sense in that he’d cost them almost nothing. But for what? With Gwynn Jr and Hairston Jr around, he’d never see daylight in the outfield. Maybe if we dfa Kennedy and consider Hairston Jr an infielder…

    • Anonymous

      Abreu would have to be taking Kennedy’s spot. He would be a better lefty pinch hitter than Kennedy. Hairston could be relieved of fifth outfielder duty

      • Anonymous

        I wish we could just acquire Abreu’s strike zone discipline and bequeath it to Little D.

  9. Anonymous

    Interesting game in Anaheim for Jered Weaver. And his team is ahead too!

    • Anonymous

      Not wanting to break any of Jon’s rules, but just curious if there has ever been a game where one team’s only baserunner has come via a strikeout wild pitch or passed ball.
      I did post this after I heard about Weaver’s first walk – so don’t look at me for jinxing that part of the game.

      • Anonymous

        That hadn’t happened, but the walk to Willingham has ruined that.

        • Anonymous

          Thanks for the answer. That would be a crazy way to miss out on 27 up and 27 down. But, as you say, it won’t happen this evening.

  10. Anonymous

    And in the interesting game, Mr. Weaver has not walked a batter or hit a batter. And there have been no errors by the Angels. But it’s still not extremely interesting.

  11. Anonymous

    9-0 games are normally uninteresting to me, but I decided to watch the ninth of Angels v. Twins.

  12. Anonymous

    Having replaced Pablo Sandoval, Ryan Theriot is now the Gnats’ cleanup hitter.

  13. Anonymous

    And finally Jered Weaver’s team lets him have a no-hitter. 

  14. So my wife had to go to the Angel game tonight for a client thing. In a suite.  About 20 min ago I am like so how is the game via text..”Oh boring, but I ate lots of junk food so it was fun” totally clueless. I bet she still has no idea she saw a no hitter. love my wife but it’s  an are u kidding me momment..becuase she’s like you can go but we just need to get a baby sitter (my 4/2 year olds have never had one and family isn’t close) and i’m like nah it’s a pain…. you go have fun…

  15. Anonymous

    That has to be one of the biggest pitcher gamescore differentials of all time. Weaver ended with a gamescore of 95, Hendricks just 16.

    • Anonymous

      In Al Leiter’s no-hitter on 5/11/1996, Leiter was 91 and Mark Thompson of Colorado put up a 6.

      • Anonymous

        The incomparable btimmer ladies and gentleman. Way to track that down!

        • Anonymous

          9/11/1936 Monty Stratton had a 68 and Hod Lisenbee had a -35. (103)
          8/3/1998 Orlando Hernandez had an 83 and Mike Oquist was -21 (104)

          • Anonymous

            Well, I stand much corrected. One should not go up against well over 100 years of baseball history lightly.

          • Anonymous

            Lisenbee and Oquist were both taking ones for the team. Lisenbee gave up 17 runs in 8 innings of work. Oquist gave up 14 runs in 5 innings.

  16. Congrats to Jered Weaver! Makes history, in front of his family. Both historic and sweet. 

    As for Bobby Abreu, not super excited {twirls finger in air} about his chances to be much of anything at this point. But on the other hand, likely would be improvement for the Dodgers’ weak bench right now and worth a shot.   Not really any obvious prospect to call up who is lighting world on fire, other than maybe Van Slyke, but better to give him daily at bats right now and if he’s doing well maybe give him shot this summer if still needing help.

  17. One thing I don’t understand, and didn’t before the game started, so this isn’t simply hindsight: why put Rivera after Kemp and bump Ethier down a spot? Isn’t Kemp going to get walked any time Ethier’s not protecting him?
    Is there some logic in trying to save Ethier for the next inning, or what? 

    • The logic is batting Rivera higher and Ethier lower when a lefty starts against the Dodgers.
      I don’t happen to agree with the logic.

      • The logic is based on Ethier’s ineptitude against lefties last year…and the fact that Rivera hit them pretty well. Andre seems more capable against them this year, so a review of the tactic would be in order.

    • Anonymous

      A walk is as good as a hit to a blind umpire.  The problem is Juan being able to take advantage.

  18. WinnipegDave’s question about the no-hitter with a passed ball/K reminded me of Ernie Shore’s relief job of Babe Ruth in 1917. Ruth walked the first guy, got thrown out of the game for arguing the balls and strikes, and Shore came in and got 26 up, 26 down and the runner Ruth allowed was thrown out trying to steal.  I remember this as one of the few perfect games, but baseball in its infinite ability to market badly has since said “Nope. No hitter, yes; perfecto, no.”

  19. Worth noting that Ruth “argued” the balls and strikes by punching the umpire in the face.

  20. Anonymous

    On the morning news on KCBS, meteorologist Josh Rubinstein had a trivia quiz where the “correct” answer meant that no pitcher had ever thrown a no-hitter against the Cubs. He said he wrote the quiz because he is a big Cubs fan.
    My brain hurts now.

    The Cubs haven’t been no hit since Koufax’s perfect game. They were also no-hit earlier in 1965 by Jim Maloney of the Reds.

    • Anonymous

      He probably forgot all about my one-hitter as well.  Yeah, Big Cub fan he is..

  21. On yesterday’s game…
    1. I actually kind of understood Jim Tracy’s decision to walk Matt Kemp. Understood it…but was grateful for it.
    2. The call at 1st base was the single worst call I have ever seen an umpire make. Completely indefensible…I mean, “apology from the league office” bad.
    3. Abreu…If he were to just equal what he did last year (.352 OBP, 21 steals in 26 attempts), he’d be our 3rd best outfielder and our best choice at leadoff. And…he’d allow us to get rid of Adam Kennedy. In the words of Consigliore Tom Hagan: “Make the deal, Sonny”.

    • Anonymous

      1.  Bochy did the same approach very early on last year (was it the first week?) against Matty, but had his guys nibble instead of an outright IBB (that’s when Kemp was a sucker for the low outside pitch that he now deposits into center-right stands).  I recall Zito not being able to follow instructions and getting yanked by Bochy after a Kemp dinger.

      2.  Line of sight, no?  The ump was positioned in the standard place, but Helton had to turn to face him to field the throw.

      3.  Pretty much a no-brainer.  Does Ned have any assistant slots left in the front office for Adam?

      • On number 2…when a 1st baseman is 3 feet off the bag, line of sight shouldn’t matter, although I get what you’re saying. In my view, it was an “anticipated call”.

  22. Anonymous

    I ran the top of the 9th scenario where Jim Tracy walked Matt Kemp intentionally, putting the tying run on first base through my simulator to see which strategy gave the Rockies a better chance of winning.  Pitching to Kemp the Rockies won 94.36% of the time and walking him intentionally they won 92.36% of the time.  So the move cost the Rockies 2% in win expectancy on paper. 

    • Anonymous

      Is 2% a small price to pay for the possibility of being seen as a pro-active, brillant manager?  I think so.

  23. I’d have walked him.  up next is a guy who has gotten on base at a  .255 clip and has an OPS around .500. I’d rather he beat (tie) me

  24. Anonymous

    Pablo Sandoval is out for several weeks know with a broken bone in his wrist.

    • Anonymous

      Surprisingly, it appears not to be obesity-related.

    • Anonymous

      Is he ambidextrous with his fork?

  25. Anonymous

    I don’t expect much from Abreu but still more than from certain players we have… I wouldn’t mind losing Loney, Uribe, Sellers, Gwynn, and Kennedy, now what would we need to replace them? A backup shortstop and a firstbaseman for sure, assuming Hairston for third base. How about Kendry Morales for first, and since we couldn’t trade Uribe, let him be the backup shortstop and third baseman. A good outfielder would allow us to move both Gwynn and Rivera. Just thoughts, it’ll never happen…

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