Dodger Thoughts

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

How will it end?

Will it be a short stumble or a big tumble?

Will it be the bullpen, the fielding, the injuries, the sluggers’ return to earth – or all of the above?

It takes nothing away from the Dodgers’ hot streak to say that it won’t last. The end could come tonight, or the next day, or next week. But they’ll return to earth.

It’s the nature of the fall that I wonder about, whether it will feel temporary or permanent, shallow or deep.

In 1982, the Dodgers advanced 12 1/2 games in the standings in 13 days, moving from 10 games out to 2 1/2 games up in the National League West, then fell back out of first place, then regained first place, then fell back out again, before Joe Morgan finished their season.

In 2006, Los Angeles went from fifth place to first in 10 days, during an astonishing 17-out-of-18 streak (immediately after losing 13 out of 14), played leapfrog with the Padres day by day and, in the 4+1 game, inning by inning, and finished on top in the division.

In 2008, the Dodgers were five games under .500 on August 29, won eight straight and 12 out of 13, and didn’t look back until the National League Championship Series.

The 2013 season has already put Dodger fans through the ringer. But in a way, it has only just begun.

The reconstruction of the bullpen looks helpful, but there’s an inherent chaos that makes it impossible to trust. The fielding isn’t really any more reliable. You know the injuries will find themselves again. You know Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez will have their slumps. So, for that matter, will Stephen Fife.

The good and the bad of the Dodgers are in an ongoing battle for supremacy. The difference right now, compared to two weeks ago, is that it finally looks like the good can put up a fight.


Dodgers livin’ the dream, 8-0


After first week back, Kemp’s timing problems linger


  1. I’m going to be optimistic here and say that it is just beginning. Sure Puig has to come down to some level of normalcy (although I’m very thankful for his showing). At the same time Matt Kemp has got to come up out of his funk with some gusto.

    It seems to me, when you look at the roster of this squad we should expect this level of play. There will be injuries (as we’ve already seen this season) but the normal level of play with a roster like this one should be pennant winning baseball.

    • Adam Luther

      I haven’t been this optimistic a Dodger fan in quite a while. There’s a certain vibe in the Stadium. Fans not wanting to miss a Puig AB. A pitcher hitting 101 on the gun nearly an afterthought. Carlos Marmol pitching in Dodger Stadium (1.13 ERA)…lights out! Crawford’s return. Even Uribe (2-4 yesterday with 2 RBI’s) is having a decent+ season-being more patient at the plate and just now surpassing his PA’s from last season and playing solid defense as well. Fife? Solid. Catchers throwing out would be base stealers. Bouncing back from the worst loss in L.A. history!!!

  2. Anonymous

    Marmol DFA’ed! Procedural to get him to AAA, or was this just about the international slot all along?

    • KT

      Think procedural

      • Adam Luther

        Colletti indicated that the problem with Marmol was mechanical.

        • KT

          yes but in order to get him to AAA to fix the mechanical problems the “procedure” is to DFA him

          • Adam Luther

            Yes. I think 10 days for them to get it figured out before the next decision needs to be made-waivers, back on the 40-man, etc. Buy$ them time.

  3. KT

    Got this off MSTI:

    Like the long suffering Marge Simpson, San Francisco’s two biggest problems yesterday were Homer and BART.

  4. Anonymous

    According to Denver Post beat writer, Puig’s double off the scoreboard “nearly left an exit wound.”

  5. Anonymous

    Dodgers have apparently DFA’d Mármol (fine with me).

    • KT

      Jay Jaffe ‏@jay_jaffe 2m

      re Marmol RT @keithlaw: @jay_jaffe @pgammo Correct. I was told he’d already agreed to accept the assignment


    • Anonymous

      To quote Bogart, out of context, “I was mistaken.”

      • Anonymous

        To amend that, out of context: “I was misinformed.”

  6. Anonymous

    Dodgers have had more than their share of “the bad” already this season – it’s about time some of “the good” has started coming through – here’s hoping it doesn’t end any time soon.

  7. Anonymous

    I for one would like to see a moratorium on all this Puig all-star nonsense. I’ve always had enough of an issue as it is with the All-Star game being an exhibition of guys who’ve had a good first half – I mean, where’s the All Star game for guys who have a great second half? This story is entirely self-generated by the media, with every player in baseball being asked if they think Puig should be on the all-star team, I lament that now you’ve got Puig lobbying for his own inclusion. I just want the kid to keep his head on straight, and I fear all this ain’t helpin’. As Vin said, “this game is not that easy.”

  8. KT

    MLB Stat of the Day ‏@MLBStatoftheDay 6m

    .@YasielPuig’s 8 homers through his first 27 games are most for any @Dodgers player since 1916.

  9. A commenter on another site – I believe it was Hardball Talk – made the point that Puig will reach the All-Star Break with as many plate appearances as an All-Star relief pitcher has batters faced.

    • KT

      and more than Papelbomb faced before his 1st ASG

    • Anonymous

      Interesting point, though isn’t that apples and oranges? Eric Gagne faced 306 batters and won the Cy Young, which is far less than the number of plate appearances one would need to qualify for a batting title.

  10. Anonymous

    Just read Papelbon’s comments thanks to the link twaseverthus provided – and while I agree in essence with what he said – Puig hasn’t put in enough time to warrant selection – If I was the manager of the NL squad and wanted to win the game, I’d want Puig on the team. Oh, and Papelbon once again sounds like a complete A-hole.

  11. Anonymous

    He’s a hick, for sure (full disclosure: I too am from Mississippi). Just let the fans vote Puig in as the “final vote” player, and there’s no issue. The fact that this manufactured controversy is getting so much airtime is what gets my goad.

    • Anonymous

      (in response to AaSsWw)

    • Anonymous

      Yeah I agree – and though i haven’t heard it – if puig is indeed lobbying his case to be included in the ASG, that would be the worst development of the whole “controversy”.

      On another note – Puig even LOOKS like a young Mondesi in the above picture.

    • Adam Luther

      In theory (and filling out the roster every team represented, etc.) wouldn’t the managers want to put whoever has been on a hot streak going into the All-Star game on the roster…in order to win the game and secure home field advantage? Wait a minute-it’s an exhibition. No it’s not because of the home field advantage thing. But players want the time off instead of playing. Puig is the hottest thing going in baseball and Selig should intervene – but that wouldn’t be fair because he (Selig) is a National League guy or was.

      • Anonymous

        Precisely the problem with assigning the game meaning. Instead of an exhibition of the best overall players, both currently and historically, we get a showcase of guys who are hot at the moment. Then again, Puig’s as big of a MLB star as there is – at the moment.

        Anyway, the final vote thing will allow Bochy and Selig alike to keep their hands clean.

    • Great, Jon. Love it!

    • Anonymous

      Yeah – it would be good for MLB and Fox’s bottom line for Puig to be in the ASG. Also, love the highlight show at the bottom of the article.

  12. Anonymous

    Marmal and Belisario — Should we have to worry about them starting a brawl?

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