Dodger Thoughts

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

Down in the hole

I don’t actually expect this to happen. But if the Dodgers lose Saturday and Sunday, I’m not sure Don Mattingly will be managing the team Monday.

It’s worth remembering that the last time the Dodgers lost eight in a row, in 2008, they nearly went to the World Series that October.

Who will be this team’s Manny?


A new Don Mattingly brush fire


A weekend fighting futility in 1981


  1. Hanley. If anyone is going to turn this team around like Manny did, it’s going to be Hanley.

    • Anonymous

      A Ramirez shall lead them . . . again . . . ?

  2. I don’t think that will happen either. The injuries are still extenuating circumstances.

    If you had told me that on May 10 AJ Ellis would be hitting for a better average than both Ethier and Kemp I would not have believed you. Nor would I have believed we’d have gone from eight starting pitchers to having to call kids up from Albuquerque to start during those six weeks.

  3. Anonymous

    I haven’t noticed . . . has home attendance been dropping?

  4. Anonymous

    A Hanley, Greinke one two punch.

  5. Anonymous

    Mattingly’s not the only problem, or even the main one, but he’s in over his head. Wouldn’t be missed.

  6. Anonymous

    Thanks for coming back, Jon. We need you!

  7. Anonymous

    After calling for a sac bunt with half the game left and the meat of the lineup coming up, Mattingly blames Punto and Uribe in the post-game. He acts and sounds like a manager on his way out.

    • Anonymous

      Uribe misread the delivery and took a step back to second and then had to reverse and break to third because Punto whiffed the bunt and there was a force out at third. Uribe was caught in no-mans land. It happens. When a team is losing,freaky things happen to them and not the other team.

      If Kemp were hitting close to what he was capable of and Ramirez is playing and hitting and Gonzales and Crawford are still doing what they are doing now, and Grienke is back and pitching well and the team is still losing, then yes, Mattingly will have to look for a Manager’s job elsewhere.

    • Anonymous

      I liked the bunt call. The dodgers have been a wait-for-the-three-run-home run-team way too much this year.

  8. Anonymous

    How can Mattingly go and not Honeycutt? I was happy to see Kemp steal a base. We need to be the Go-Go Dodgers and let Crawford, Kemp, and Dee run, run, run.

    • What does Honeycutt have to do with base stealing?

      • Anonymous

        Okay, I’ll fill out those thoughts. If we’re looking to blame the manager (especially for pitching change decisions), then I would think one would also toss some blame towards the pitching coach (who may have as much voice over the pen rotation). In the effort of thinking how the Dodgers could start winning again, I advocated speed on the base paths. Yes, there should have been a paragraph between those two thoughts but I thought I would forgo it.

        • Anonymous

          Donnie knows running is simply too risky. You might get thrown out, while the bunt always works.

        • Oh ok, sorry. I thought you were relating the two, got it.

  9. Anonymous

    When Bill Russell was fired (which is the only precedent Dodgers fan can use out here) midseason in 1998, the Dodgers were 36-38 and coming off 2 straight losses in Denver. Glenn Hoffman took over and lost his first two games, against the Angels in Anaheim.

    But 1998 had a lot of problems. Namely, Chase Carey and Peter Chernin happened. While Frank McCourt ran the Dodgers as his own ATM. Carey and Chernin ran the Dodgers either in fits of pique or outright negligence.

    I am always afraid to express displeasure of Chase Carey because I feel that News Corp will send operatives to my home to teach me a lesson for speaking out against the company. Even though I don’t work for it.

  10. Is Lou Piniella available?

  11. While I’d let Nick Punto swing away in that situation, that’s a forgivable bunting situation. It probably leads to Matt Kemp batting with the bases loaded and one out, and if you’re afraid of that, you might as well pack up and go home.

    I don’t think Mattingly did anything else wrong Friday other than giving one of his inconsistent relievers the ball, and he clearly doesn’t have many options to choose from down there.

  12. Anonymous

    In response to a question from Bob in Vegas last night about attendance, the Dodgers lead the National League in total attendance this season with 818,010, an average of 43.053 per game. However, only three more teams have had more than their 19 home dates thus far. In the first four games of the current homestand, the Dodgers have averaged 34,456 per game. In 2012, the Dodgers finished third in the league in total attendance — 3,324,246, an average of 41,040 for 81 home dates.

    • Anonymous

      I don’t feel the same as when I boycotted McCourt, but if I was visiting and had a choice, right now i wouldn’t want to see a game . . . . deal with the traffic and most likely leave frustrated? No thanks.

  13. To blame Mattingly for what is happening would be like blaming the captain for the construction of the Titanic. The captain could have done a better job, but it was supposed to be unsinkable. I do think Mattingly is of the school of manager that lacks creative flash–so was St. Joseph of Torre, his mentor. Would the team suddenly respond to a different manager without a completely different coaching staff? I seem to recall that Davey Lopes was given the authority to run the team on the bases. Where is he (and I don’t ask that merely because he turned me down for an autograph when I was nine and I swore eternal vengeance)?

  14. Anonymous

    Even though Mattingly’s dismissal would probably make little difference on the field, I’d not mind seeing it happen.

  15. St. Louis pitchers Miller and Wainwright have retired 39 Rockies batters in a row.

    • Anonymous

      The Mariners retired the last 30 Rays hitters they faced last year, so they can go after that mark (which reached 40), but they don’t play until August 13.

  16. Why I am posting here, I don’t know, but I am tired of ranting alone at my computer about this team. Mattingly has been a terrible manager this season, in my opinion, mostly because of his propensity to bunt the team out of innings. But he has also been dealt a rough hand with injuries, and if the team had had a consistent lineup of Crawford, Ellis, Kemp, Gonzalez, Ramirez, Ethier, Ellis, and a random infielder, there’s no way it would be eight games under .500.

    The real culprit is Ned Colletti, who has hamstrung Mattingly through a series of questionable roster moves, not to mention stacking the deck with his usual group of gritty veterans who can’t hit and three-year contracts to relievers who don’t deserve them. Simply put, he’s a poor evaluator of baseball talent, and it’s miraculous that he still has a job.

    Here endeth the lesson.

  17. Anonymous

    I have to just drop in here and get this one off….
    There is absolutely, positively no reason on this earth why Donny Ballgame should be fired!
    As long-time sports fans, everybody on this blog has probably felt, at one time or another, that one of their teams could use a new manager, coach, etc. And, not only is it a rightful personal opinion, it is also sometimes fact!

    However, this is flat-out…. not one of those times.
    To me, the ‘hierarchy of blame’ for this poor season thus far goes like so…(Most important to least)
    1. Injuries: Have they even fielded their full, projected starting lineup?
    2. Players that are either not at their best physically or mentally (A-Gon admitted this a few postings ago…. that he’ll never be what he once was)

    3. Guys having just poor starts to the season (Ethier, Kemp, Bellesario, et. al.)
    4. Guys just ‘not getting it done’ – It seems like a new guy every night.

    For example, AJ Ellis’ two balls he failed to block could have made all the difference in SF… but, he’s had some very timely hitting. On another night, Crawford lets a couple of balls get by him (Kemp not hustling to back up to boot) … but, he’s been a great LF and leadoff guy overall. I like him.
    Basically… “Who’s mistake will be the difference tonight?” …. seems to be how things have been going lately.
    And, Donny can’t do anything about this.
    AJ said it himself the other night post-game…”We’re the Los Angeles Dodgers, and we need to get it done as players.”
    PS – If they were to fire Donny and promote Wallach, I’d be so disappointed…. (Wallach=Boring!)


    • Anonymous

      I just rewatched the video of Trevor Cahill’s triple that was the result of Carl Crawford letting the ball get by him.
      1. Kemp was playing very shallow in center field as the pitcher was up.
      2. You can see on the video that once the ball gets past Crawford, Kemp starts running toward left field. However, Crawford was much closer to the ball.

      The only way that Kemp could have been there immediately to back up that play was if he was standing about 10 feet away from Crawford.

      When balls get past the LF and RF, it’s a bad thing. At least when balls go by the CF, it’s easier for the corner outfielders to move over because the ball is usually hit toward their side of the field.

      But, hey, we can blame Matt Kemp for everything.

      • Anonymous

        Hey btimm…..

        Perhaps my account of that incident was incorrect, but, I actually heard that accounting of Kemp from one of the 2 or 3 hosts on the radio post-game show.

        My main point was that Crawford, although he may have made a bad play or two here and there, has been great overall…. as have a number of the players. It just so happens that there seems to be one or two mis-cues or missed opportunities, each night that could be pointed at as a game-changing play that really help to contribute to the loss.

        You know the overall meaning of my posting…. You know it darn good and well.
        Yet, you chose to try to extract an afterthought/descriptor…. then, blow it up and exploit it for something it surely wasn’t. Nobody reading that post would have taken it as an attempt to blame everything on Matt Kemp.

        Why you chose to do this? I have no idea, but, I think it’s in poor spirit.

        Congratulations, btimm.

        • Anonymous

          You know, it’s funny.
          I used to actually get upset if I felt somebody disrespected me on DT.
          For some time now, it’s the last way I would feel.

          I know that while people may not agree with my tone or opinion, that I never intentionally try to misinterpret, manipulate, or disrespect anybody.

          When somebody does it to me… it is a statement of THEM, not me.
          You tell us all how YOU are, as a person.

          I’m reading you loud and clear, my man. :-)

          • Anonymous

            Timmerman describes the play alone, and never makes any personal attack here.

          • Anonymous

            Hey Wbb….
            I suppose I took exception to the line..
            “But, hey, we can blame Matt Kemp for everything”

          • Anonymous

            I think you were a little too sensitive there.

          • Anonymous

            I can appreciate that, WBB….

  18. Anonymous

    Off topic and late, I know, but I did not see your post about Kershaw, or the Grantland piece, until today. During the broadcast Wednesday night, Vinny mentioned that they best curveball he ever saw Kershaw throw was that pitch in Spring Training. What is interesting about it–and classic Vinny–is that he does not seem to take credit for that. Not that he threw the pitch, but that pitch, as the Grantlad piece stated, turned him from prospect to phenom. He became the guy we were all waiting for. It convinced me to go to his May MLB debut, just to see him. And the effect would have never been the same if it was Eric Collins or Charley Steiner, or Joe Buck, or Matt Vasgergian calling the game. Only Vin Scully’s call–and, of course, his credibility in making it, because if Vin Scully thinks it’s incredible, and he’s seen some incredible curveballs, then you better watch out.

    • Anonymous

      Well said.
      Plus the fact that any moment + Vin Scully = something to be treasured.

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