Dodger Thoughts

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

Beneath the cliffs of insanity

Friday’s 9-0 loss to the Mets marked the 11th time in Los Angeles Dodger history that the team could have achieved the same result simply by forfeiting.

 The Dodger offense in 45 innings since Monday:
  • Total baserunners: 39
  • Runners to get as far as first base: 20
  • Runners to get as far as second base: 15
  • Runners to get as far as third base: 2
  • Runners to get as far as home: 2

It was a lovely evening at the ballpark last night to watch futility.

While wondering whether Campbell’s sells alphabet soup with all the letters between A-N and P-Z removed …

  • Carlos Lee became a rumored trade target for the Dodgers last night in a deal that could cost them former first-round pick Garret Gould. Chad Moriyama analyzesthe pitfalls of that deal. An excerpt:

    … Carlos Lee’s current slash line is .290/.342/.412/.754, which is in line with his recent production, and he projects to hit .276/.328/.434/.762 the rest of the way. Additionally, consider that he’s a terrible defender in the outfield and a fringe to poor defender at first base.

    James Loney’s current line is .236/.303/.323/.626, which is partially the result of lower than normal BABIP. He projects to hit .266/.327/.387/.714 the rest of the way. Plus, he plays above-average to plus defense at first.

    Now 50 points difference in OPS is nothing to scoff at, but factor in the defense and then consider that Loney has a .802 OPS career against righties (.669 against lefties) and Juan Rivera  has a .821 career OPS against lefties (.747 against righties). Now the gap is basically non-existent.

    You know how to tell that this trade is an iffy upgrade? When it’s even arguable as to whether a potential acquisition is an improvement over James Loney and Juan Rivera. …

    Update: Reports online this morning indicate the Dodgers and Astros have agreed to terms, and the deal hinges on Lee’s approval.

  • Mark Ellis is beginning a rehab assignment with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga tonight, writes Andy Kamenetzky of He could be activated inside of a week.
  • Andre Ethier could return to the lineup as soon as Monday, writes Alex Angert of, but it’s a dicey proposition.
  • The Dodgers have signed first-round pick Corey Seager in a deal that features a $2.35 million bonus, reports Dylan Hernandez of the Times.
  • At Minor League Ball, John Sickels started a conversation about whether baseball has become too expensive for the average kid. Alex Remington offers his own thoughts at Fangraphs. The commenters in each post offer wide-ranging responses.


Age is just a number (even if it’s the wrong number)


June 30 game chat


  1. Josie Becker

    Wonder why a forfeit is recorded as 9-0. It’s not like baseball has goal differential : ) Does each player on the winning team get one run? 

    • I think it’s a run per inning – but honestly, there may be no explanation. 

    • Anonymous

      It’s one run per inning. High school games that are forfeited are 7-0. However, that score only appears if the game is forfeited before it becomes regulation.

      There hasn’t been a 9-0 forfeit in the majors since the Disco Demolition Night at Comiskey Park in 1979.

      However, no stats are recorded for such a game. For streak purposes, it doesn’t end anything.

  2. foul tip

    LATd response to Tiensy RE possible Fields callup–

    Agreed, Fields might not make much difference. But there’s only one way to find out.

    If real chances aren’t given players who aren’t exactly sure things,
    there’s no chance of finding Herreras or other pleasant surprises. 
    Herrera isn’t going to be a superstar, probably not even a star.  But
    he’s been solid and definitely contributed.  Seems like he was called up
    due at least in part to a Mota recommendation.

    I don’t think Uribe fooled anybody except Ned.  On top of that Uribe
    was especially shiny because he was a former Giant.  Ned just couldn’t

    Wouldn’t be surprised if every time Uribe messes up, Kasten casts a
    long look in Ned’s direction.  If so, Kasten stares at Ned often.

    • Anonymous

      at the time, it was reported that the Giants offered Uribe a contract very close to the one Ned offered 

  3. Not in favor of Carlos Lee…at all. We’d be better off talking Derrick Lee out of retirement.

  4. Anonymous

    I made a suggestion last night that the Dodgers’ new “Money Bags” ownership group attempt to simply “buy” some of the young talent from other clubs.  “Where there’s a will (and lots of cash) … there must be a way…”  IMHO. 
    I referred to a list of the top 100 MLB prospects…..
    The first (and only) Dodger listed in that long list was Zach Lee at #79.  Sad.
    Funny thing to me is the fact that the Yankees, Angels, Rangers, Giants, Diamondbacks, etc. were all quite well – represented in the top 50.
    Hmm… Great MLB Clubs (Playoff Clubs) also have some of the very best prospects as well !!!
    Granted:  My disclaimer is that it is a subjective list…. I’m well aware.
    However, I’d rather the Dodgers simply just go with young, talented, athletic prospects with Kershaw and Kemp being the leaders …. Rather than adding a Carlos Lee.  And yes, they could find a way to get them.
    “We’re the Dodgers…remember that…. think big!” paraphrasing Kasten.
    I hope he wasn’t thinking big as in the girth of Carlos Lee’s midsection.
    Getting back to my point on the lack of prospects.
    It goes to show how well some organizations are run vs. others.
    If “the cupboard is bare” as it appears to be for our Dodgers…. it does nothing but to underscore how poorly this organization has been run for the last decade…. Stop the madness Stan Kasten!

    • Anonymous

       I’ll stop harping on this..

      I just think acquiring Carlos Lee simply perpetuates the problems with the Dodgers…..

      The Astros would love a deal, I’m sure.  Would let ’em off the hook.

      Juan Uribe, Jason Schmidt, Sherrill, and so many others acquired by Ned/ Frank….
      Hey, “What’s done is done…”  IMHO.
      No use complaining about it…. I’m about solutions at this point. 

      • Anonymous

        Every GM has some good acquisitions and some bad ones.  For every Uribe and Schmidt, there’s a Capuano and a Hairston.  For every Kennedy there’s a Mark Ellis.  For every Rivera there’s an Abreu.

      • Anonymous

        you are about including IMHO in your posts as if it adds anything

    • foul tip

       Don’t have the link, but in a comment a while back a scout said the top Dodger prospects were all pitchers with none of the position players behind them projecting as much threats.

      Scouts can be wrong.  Let’s hope.  Help is for sure going to have to come from outside, but maybe some can come from the minors.

      • Makes one thankful for the Seager and Puig signings, eh?  Suddenly our top 5 prospects list looks very respectable, and (gasp!) has two position players on it.

    • get real you whippersnapper. none of this has anything to do with possible reality. now go back to ripping on us old guys and how bad the dodgers play

      • Anonymous

         Sorry “VODF”…. I must have lost my focus for a moment. 
        I’ll try not to let it happen again…. :-)   

  5. Maybe the thinking is a change of scenery unto a team with playoff hopes will help him a bit. Maybe the thinking is also there ain’t gonna be no one else to realistically get. Small upgrades here or there..And if I read things right this is the last year of his deal so it wouldn’t effect any plans the dodgers have next season to really upgrade. But ya I am not exactly thinking were gonna turn the first base box seats into carlosleewood

  6. Anonymous

    Not looking forward to Carlos Lee– at any price. Much prefer Kendry Morales. Is there that much bad feeling between the Dodgers and Angels, even with new ownership?

    • It’s more just that there’s no indication that Morales is available, though yeah, you’d think there’d be a fit there. Angels still need relief pitching. 

    • the difference between Lee and Morales is reality

  7. There’s still hope yet guys!

    Maybe El Caballo will save Ned by vetoing the whole thing. We can only hope.

    • It sounds like Lee really does love Texas. I thought this was a negotiating ploy but I think he sincerely is torn about leaving. 

      Here’s an ESPN piece on Lee and his ranch. He loves his cattle!

      He may very well just not want to leave it behind, even if just for 3 months.Honestly, he’d still be an upgrade over the putrid 1st base play we’ve had so far and motivated to show his worth as a pending FA maybe he’d mash. He has pretty decent numbers at Dodger Stadium. I mean, do people want to stick with Loney/Rivera at 1st right now? The latter is okay as a platoon guy, but otherwise that ship has sailed.  I’d hope for something better than Lee but they may have to wait another 2-3 weeks before more teams become sellers.

  8. Anonymous

    Lee’s a rental, plain and simple. If all it takes from a prospect perspective is Gould, pull the trigger. The other trigger to be pulled would be the one on this season. The return of Kemp and Eliis is not enough.

  9. too much talk on carlos lee. not enough talk on R.A. That was something new in baseball. the knuckleball i mean. sort of like nice old honest abe turning into abraham lincoln vampire killer.

    honestly. who can get so worked up about carlos lee one way or another.

  10. Kuroda so far today: five innings, two hits, one walk, no runs, 8 K, 13 in a row retired

    • kuroda is a warrior. he wanted to play with other warriors. not the dodgers. i can’t blame him.

      • Anonymous

        You mean the Yankees are the only team that tries hard?
        That is extraordinarily belittling of all the other teams in the majors.

        And it’s factually untrue.

        And inflammatory.

      • Kuroda wanted to play for the Dodgers, and only didn’t because of the money being offered to him last winter. 

        • they offered all the deferred money he could carry i bet. he didn’t want that part of it.

          • I honestly think you don’t know what you’re talking about in this case. 

          • Anonymous

            I wish I had some evidence that “in this case” was needed in above post.

          • OK. i think it’s just a sketchy line between wanting to play for a team and wanting the best deal especially when it comes to a  professional ballplayers. why wouldn’t you want the best deal. Ned was quoted several times as saying he was willing and trying to do something creative with Kuroda because he obviously couldn’t pay him what he wanted or deserved. with everyone else that has meant deferred money. and of course why would you agree to deferred money with a team in bankruptcy.

          • Anonymous

            in my memory, they never made an offer at all.

    • bcmaiden

      I’m sure he is quite content with almost guaranteed run support each outing. Wish we still had him.

  11.  Carlos Lee weighs options- all 270 pounds of em.

  12. Fingers, toes and anything else possible crossed that “El Caballo” aka Carlos Lee vetoes this trade (never thought I would say this about a trade) 

    • bcmaiden

      Rec this. Please say no Carlos. Here I thought the new ownership would be different. How is Lee different than Rivera, Abreu, Kennedy, Anderson, etc. etc. etc.? I want a new GM not Lee. 

      • Anonymous

        When you sign a short-term contract for an older player, you’re taking a chance.  Sometimes it works out (Abreu, Hairston, M Ellis, Carroll, Rivera 2011) and sometimes it doesn’t (Kennedy, Anderson, Rivera 2012).  The problem isn’t taking a chance on signing these guys.  The problem is the price you pay; if it doesn’t involve a lot of money for a free agent signing, it’s no big deal, but if you have to give up prospects or overpay for a free agent, that is a problem.

        • bcmaiden

          That’s right and Ned makes those problem deals every year. Problem #1 = he targets questionable players, Problem #2 = they usually have negative value. Our prospects have more value than his trade acquisitions. 

  13. hey jon. i was wondering if there has been any changes about going to a dodger game since new ownership? Stadium-wise.

  14. Kuroda has tied career high with 11 strikeouts. Seven innings, three hits, one walk, no runs, 107 pitches.

  15. Anonymous

    The last time the Dodgers, in a month with a full slate of games, hit just one hit one home run at Dodger Stadium, is never.
    They last had just two in a full month in April of 1988. They had three months with 2 homers in 1968. And one month in 1971.

  16. Anonymous

    Honestly, I’d rather see them just install Jerry Sands at first for the rest of the year and see what he becomes rather than trade anybody for Lee…

  17. Anonymous

    The Dodgers have hit just 21 home runs at home this year. 11 of them by Kemp and Ethier. Rivera and the Elissii have two each.

    It could be worse. The Padres have just 14 homers at Petco.

  18. Anonymous

    I read above about Kendry Moreles….
    Something tells me the Angels would part with Vernon Wells (don’t get any ideas Ned) before they’d part with Morales. 
    I realize Wells is returning from injury….and with Trumbo, Trout, and Hunter playing so well…..

    • Anonymous

      Exactly. We can toss out all sorts of names that might help the Dodgers, but it doesn’t mean they are available.

    • Anonymous

       Morales sp.

    • Anonymous

      Even Vernon Wells would be a better solution than Lee, God help us…

      • Anonymous

        Looked at Wells’ contract lately? Better than any Ned deal ever

  19. Anonymous

    I don’t like this trade.  Lee is only a marginal upgrade at first when you take defense into account.  Plus he’s a three-month rental.  In exchange, we lose a prospect who may turn out to be a major-league starter.  Like trading Edwin Jackson for three months of Juan Rivera or Casey Blake.  No thanks.

    I don’t have any problem at all trading our prospects.  But it ought to be for players who are significant upgrades, and/or who will be around for a while.  Lee will be neither.

    I like 16883’s idea of letting Sands play first for the rest of the season…

    • Anonymous

      Oh, and I think it’s silly of Lee to veto a trade based on where he’ll be for three months.  He’ll spend half of those three months on the road anyway.  But I’ll be really really happy if the trade doesn’t happen because he vetoes it.  :)

      • Anonymous

        Gould had a really good year at Great Lakes last year.  He’s not doing very well at Rancho Cucamonga this year in some ways (WHIP 1.444) but other numbers are decent (K/9 9.0).  And the kid’s only 20 years old, so there’s plenty of time to develop.  I wouldn’t trade him for a three-month rental or a marginal upgrade, let alone both.

        • Anonymous

          But it’s an upgrade which can help us get into the playoffs.  Add him to a lineup with a healthy Kemp and Ethier, that’s an improvement, don’t you think?

  20. Anonymous

    Carlos Lee…

    Declining performance…
    Not that great a player over the past couple of years anyways…
    Poor fielder, getting worse with age….
    Contract runs out at the end of this season…..

    So, you’re going to be without a contract soon, and your recent performance will probably not land you the dollars you’d like….. What to do.  What to do.
    Well, at least I can dangle that “no trade clause” in front of the Dodgers and ‘Stros!
    Let’s see what I can get out of this situation…..
    Dodgers:  Have the distinct opportunity to be the first “Suckers” as the trade deadline approaches.
    Be smart guys.

  21. Anonymous

    One good thing about the Dodgers lately: It looks like management has finally recognized the disaster at first and third base, and seems intent on finally doing something about it…

  22. Anonymous

    “Carlos Lee isn’t walking through that door.”

    Mostly because he’s playing first base right now for the Astros at Wrigley Field.

  23. What I would like is for talks pertaining to Chase Headley heating up. He isn’t going to mash and solve all of the Dodgers offensive woes, but with him at the hot corner and Ellis returning to second along with Kemp in center… the Dodgers can actually put up a decent batting order. I have read that the Padres would like a good amount in return but I think a couple of our attractive pitching prospects could entice them. Or maybe we just wait for O’malley to buy the team, surely he’ll want to help out his dad’s old club.

    • Anonymous

      Headley 2012 OPS .799
      Hairston 2012 OPS .792

      That’s no upgrade at all.  No thanks! (Fortunately for us in this case, the Madres have a history of refusing to trade players within their division.)

      • Yes but you forgot, Hairston doesn’t feel comfortable playing third base…

        Though over their careers Hairston has an OPS of .701 while Headly has an OPS of .742, while Headley is also 8 years younger than Hairston. But I wasn’t really even suggesting Headley for his slugging, he just has decent all around numbers and is a good age. I mean I would gladly take his 8HR, 38RBI, 9SB, with plus defense.

        • Anonymous

          And I wouldn’t.  If we’re going to make a trade, it ought to be for someone who’s better than average.  Not for someone who is major-league average like Headley.

          • True. I guess it’s just slim pickings that are making him look good. But I think he would be an upgrade at third over anybody we have playing there now. I guess if Hairston can get over his fear of third base when Ellis comes back that wouldn’t be so bad.

  24. foul tip

    NYY game story notes Hiroki will be sorry to see June close, along with Cano, who hit 11 HR in June.

    Kuroda improved to 4-1 in 6 June starts, lowering his ERA in the month to 1.98. Tied a career high with 11 strikeouts, bringing total for the month to 43 in 41 IP. He walked 10.

    ERA now 3.17, pretty much mirroring what he did in LA.  So far he has not found the AL and AL East insurmountable, tho I think his numbers at the end may be a bit higher.

    Seems there are better hitters in the AL East than NL West, or something like that.

  25. Anonymous

    Rosenthal says the Dodgers have been talking with the Brewers.  Aramis Ramirez would be an upgrade, but his age is going up and that’s a risk.  I’d like him, but I wonder whether the Brewers would part with him.  Usually, when they trade players before the deadline, it’s the ones they expect to lose at the end of the season anyway.  I’d love to see a Zach and a Zack in the rotation of a team with a Hall of Famer named Zack.  :)

  26. foul tip

    Meanwhile, back at the NYY ranch, old friend R. Martin now hitting .189 after today’s 0/3 with 2 Ks.
    Leaves his line at 313/ 368/ 681.  In interest of full disclosure old friend/whipping boy A. Jones sits at .226 with a line of 325/ 462/ 787.

    However, Martin leads him in HR, 8-7.

    So Ned seems to have gotten one right…except, IIRC, the Dodger offer was pretty close to what he took from the Yankees.

    There’s enough bad news now that I won’t add to it with more talk of Jones.

  27. Anonymous

    I’m in favor of the trade.  If Lee’s production is comparable to the combined numbers of two other players, what does that say about the individual production of Loney and Rivera?

    • foul tip

       If it happens and Loney is sent Houston’s way, at least he’ll be going back to his hometown.

  28. Lee is an improvement although a slight one over the current crew at 1st.Perhaps no one better is currently available…and Derek Lee is not an improvement.I am not knowledgeable about the pitching prospect the Dodgers are willing to trade,so I can’t opine about the trade but geez guys we’ve got to get someone to drive in a few runs soon.Sands,Van Slyke,Fields,Castellano are simply not ready to take it on.

  29. KT

    Well it’s finally official that the Dodgers inked Corey Seager

  30. Anonymous

    FYI, if anyone likes to listen to baseball audio, the Dodger radio network broadcast (Vin & Jerry Doggett are listed as the broadcasters) of game 5 of the 1981 NLCS is available for purchase.  It is good to know that the broadcast has been preserved.

    • Anonymous

      NLCS, then it’s the Montreal series.  Where does one purchase these recordings?

  31. Anonymous

    Does anyone have an opinion about why Loney has seemed so thoroughly checked out lately? I’ve actually always had a soft spot for him, but it just feels like he’s shifted into some new zone of lethargy, at least during his at bats. And I felt this even before the consecutive games on the bench. I guess I’m asking if there’s a cart-horse I’m not seeing. (Now that I’ve written this, I have no idea if there’s even an answer, but oh well, I guess I’ll post it anyway.)

    • KT

      I think he sees the writting on the wall and he’s dropped into a funk that he can’t get out of

  32. Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports says Lee “mulling trade.”

    He editorializes: “While Lee would only be a marginal upgrade over James Loney at first base. . .”

  33. Anonymous

    Artie, it is the Montreal series.  Hope Jon does not mind this, but the broadcast can be purchased at Baseball Direct.  A few years ago Baseball Direct had a link on Jon’s site for the 9/3/69 Mets/Dodgers radio broadcast that Jon wrote so wonderfully about at  The CD of game 5 is from the Miley Collection.  Holley Music in Cooperstown also sells Miley’s CD’s.  I have yet to hear the 1981 NLCS game.  Most of Miley offerings are good audio quality.  Andy Holden runs Baseball Direct & he is really a pleasure to deal with. 

  34. Thanks to the miracle of technology, I’m watching the Cubs/Astros series online. As soon as I clicked over, Mr. Lee hit into a double play. So, looks like he’ll fit right in.

    I just don’t understand why the team would literally rent … well, it’s been said here. 

    If they’re not afraid of taking on money, why don’t they sign Mr. Soriano. I am not crazy the way he plays, but he’s got random exhibitions of pop and plays a (barely) serviceable LF. 

    I’d keep Loney for the D, if I had to, and do something about LF and 3B — more classic power positions. 

    Actually, I don’t think there are ANY good options out there currently and for that reason I’d bring up Sands and Fields until the trade season heats up.

  35. Anonymous

    Whether it is a good trade or not, sometimes the deckchairs just need a shuffling now and then :)

  36. Anonymous

    Watching B Penny is a little surreal.

    Why not bring back D Lee?

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