Dodger Thoughts

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

Category: International (Page 2 of 2)

Dodgers show pride and giving side

Justin Turner gets ready to drop the ceremonial puck between the Kings' Dustin Brown and the Panthers' Willie Mitchell. (Juan Ocampo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Justin Turner gets ready to drop the ceremonial puck between the Kings’ Dustin Brown and the Panthers’ Willie Mitchell. (Juan Ocampo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

111814JO_LAD_USOBy Jon Weisman

Dodgers Pride Night at Staples Center, hosted by our friends at the Los Angeles Kings, took place Tuesday. Click this link to visit a Juan Ocampo photo gallery from the evening, and click here for video.

Also on Tuesday, Tommy Lasorda, Ned Colletti and Tim and Lori Wallach helped serve Thanksgiving meals to approximately 300 service members at the 9th annual Thanksgiving Dinner for the Troops at the Bob Hope USO, located at Los Angeles International Airport. The event was part of the Dodgers’ 2014 Season of Giving.


And on his last off day before returning home from the Japan All-Star Series, Drew Butera joined Jeff Beliveau of the Rays in visiting a children’s hospital. David Venn has more at

Ben Platt/

Ben Platt/

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Yasiel Puig ends Japan series on high note

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Ben Platt/

Ben Platt/

Yasiel Puig went 2 for 5 (and stole a base) to finish the Japan All-Star Series with five hits in his final nine at-bats, and also made a running catch near the wall in foul territory in today’s 3-1 victory over Samurai Japan.

MLB won a so-called exhibition game, then lost the first three games of the Japan Series before winning the final two to end its trip with a .400 or .500 record, depending how generous you are.

– Jon Weisman

Sunday slice: At the Tokyo Dome

Kaz Ishii and Takashi Saito were on hand at today's game. (Ben Platt/

Kaz Ishii and Takashi Saito were on hand at today’s game. (Ben Platt/

Enjoy this selection of images from Sunday in Japan.

— Jon Weisman

Yasiel Puig signing autographs before Sunday's game (Yuki Taguchi/MLB Photos)

Yasiel Puig signing autographs before Sunday’s game (Yuki Taguchi/MLB Photos)

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Yasiel Puig has huge game in Japan

Yuki Taguchi/MLB Photos

Yuki Taguchi/MLB Photos

By Jon Weisman

After his team suffered through a no-hitter in the third game of the Japan All-Star Series on Saturday, Yasiel Puig broke out in a big way today, going 3 for 4 with a diving catch in a 6-1 victory. Read about it here, and watch the highlights below.

– Jon Weisman

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Drew Butera also had a nice catch …

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Dodgers sign Juan Uribe’s nephew, two others

Frank Sanchez, a 16-year-old shortstop from San Cristobal, Dominican Republic and the nephew of Dodger third baseman Juan Uribe, is one of three international signings announced by the Dodgers today.

Patrick Guerrero, Franklin Taveras and Bob Engle were the signing scouts for Sanchez.

The other two signees are also 16: shortstop Edwin Reyes from Azua, Dominican Republic (signing scout: Taveras) and catcher/infielder Jerson Dometilia from Kenley Jansen’s hometown of Willemstad, Curacao (signing scouts: Rolando Chirino, Guerrero).

— Jon Weisman

Dome Alone: Puig, MLB stifled in Japan Series Game 1

Ben Platt/

Ben Platt/

Yasiel Puig went 0 for 2 with a walk and was left standing in the on-deck circle when Colorado’s Justin Morneau lined into a game-ending double play in the MLB All-Stars’ 2-0 loss to Samurai Japan in Game 1 of the Japan Series in Osaka.

– Jon Weisman

Puig, Butera contribute to MLB exhibition victory in Japan

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Ben Platt/

Ben Platt/

By Jon Weisman

Yasiel Puig had the first RBI of the game with this single to right field in what ultimately became an 8-7 exhibition victory in Japan for the MLB team over a team made up players from the Hanshin Tigers and Yomiuri Giants.

Puig’s Dodger teammate Drew Butera had a key play after an 8-1 MLB lead had been cut to a single run. Butera picked off the tying run at second base in the bottom of the eighth inning.

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Puig went 1 for 4 in the game, while Butera, who entered in the seventh inning, struck out in his only plate appearance.

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Welcome to Japan, Yasiel Puig

Yasiel Puig enjoyed taking part in the festivities   Ben Platt/
An enthusiastic Yasiel Puig took part in welcome ceremonies after the MLB team’s arrival for this week’s Japan All-Star Series. Thanks to Ben Platt of for the photos.

— Jon Weisman

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Dodgers announce six international signings

By Jon Weisman

The Dodgers have officially signed six players since the Wednesday opening of the international signing period:

  • Jhoan Calderon, 16 (born September 14, 1997), a 6-foot-3, 200-pound outfielder from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • Leonardo Crawford, 17 (born February 2, 1997), a 6-foot, 180-pound left-handed pitcher from Managua, Nicaragua
  • Romer Cuadrado, 16 (born September 12, 1997), a 6-4, 185-pound oiutfielder from Monagas, Venezuela
  • Eric Meza, 16 (born March 5, 1998), a 6-2, 190-pound first baseman from Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Felix Osorio, 17 (born November 13, 1996), a 6-3, 188-pound outfielder from Santiago, Dominican Republic
  • Jefrey Souffront, 17 (born May 23, 1997), a 6-1, 190-pound shortstop from Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

This period allows for the singing of international players not eligible for the annual MLB amateur draft. Each team has a finite bonus pool that they can pay from, based up on the previous season’s record, though teams can trade for dollars to increase that pool. Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. and Dustin Nosler of Dodgers Digest have more.

Dodgers officially sign Erisbel Arruebarrena

By Jon Weisman

Defensive infield whiz Erisbel Arruebarrena has inked a five-year contract with the Dodgers, becoming the latest Cuban expatriate to join the organization.

In a corresponding move, the Dodgers designated infielder Justin Sellers for assignment. Sellers had a .278 on-base percentage and .301 slugging in 266 plate appearances with the Dodgers.

Arruebarrena, 23, was a teammate of  Yasiel Puig with Cienfuegos in 2010-11.

“We are excited to sign Erisbel, who we’ve scouted in international competition for a long time.” said Dodger vice president of international scouting Bob Engle. “He brings another superb glove to our organization.”

Added general manager Ned Colletti: “Signing Arruebarrena gives us another very good middle infielder, who is an outstanding defender. It continues our efforts internationally to add talent that can positively affect the Major League club – be it immediately or in the very near future.”

Arruebarrena’s last name is shorter than Todd Hollandsworth, 13 to 12, but his first and last together top the former Dodger Rookie of the Year, 19-16.

In case you missed it: Upside down, boy you turn me

By Jon Weisman

One week until it’s time for Dodger (Spring Training) baseball …

  • Injury updates on several Dodgers are provided by Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. It could be a couple of weeks before we know more about Matt Kemp.

    … Kemp has had monthly MRI exams since having surgery to remove torn cartilage in his left ankle in October. Mattingly said the last exam was roughly two weeks ago, so we could have another two weeks or so before hearing anything new. …

  • More encouraging news — and a great quote — are coming from Josh Beckett and Dan Haren, according to Mark Saxon of ESPN LosAngeles.

    … “I said, ‘Did you ever dream you’d be watching a guy with a beard like Brian Wilson pitch with Sandy Koufax standing 10 feet from you?’” Beckett said. “Dan Haren’s like, ‘Yeah, it seems like there should be a unicorn somewhere.’” …

  • Since before the beginning of Spring Training, it’s been apparent that there might not be a full-time starter at second base come March 22. As Saxon and Stephen report, nothing has changed on that count.
  • Proclamation time:
  • “There’s no reason not to be confident” in Paco Rodriguez, despite the fact that he ran out of steam last fall, Don Mattingly told Ken Gurnick of MLB.comalong with Stephen.
  • In this Gurnick news feature about Don Mattingly, managers and long-term contracts comes this tidbit: “Jamey Wright has played for 29 managers in his 21 professional seasons.”
  • Yasiel Puig’s signing could have an impact for the Dodgers’ future international efforts, reports Jesse Sanchez of

    … “The way it works down there, [amateur] players come to tryouts at your camp, and we had a hard time getting players to come to the academy [in the Dominican Republic] until we signed Puig,” (Ned) Colletti said. “I was down there about three weeks ago or so, and it was probably the best group of players that I’ve seen. A lot of it has to do with our ability to spend, and we’ve increased our scouting internationally three-fold from where it was. We have the finances to be competitive with players from Cuba and amateurs in other countries. Puig was a very key sign for us in more ways than just his talent.”

  • Tommy Davis is the latest to be featured in Ernest Reyes’ 1961 Union Oil Family Booklet series at Blue Heaven.
  • Joe Morgan talked with Bill James? It’s more than 80 minutes (via Baseball Think Factory), but this I gotta hear. “A lot of you may not know him as well as I do,” Morgan said, “but he is the father of sabermetrics, so to speak, and a guy that I really have a lot of admiration for. I don’t agree with a lot of sabermetrics people, but I’ve rarely disagreed with Bill.”

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