Dodger Thoughts

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

Tag: Andre Ethier (Page 1 of 12)

The reign in pain: Justin Turner making HBP history


One other thread in the Andre Ethier legacy is that he is the all-time Los Angeles Dodger leader in times being hit by a pitch, with 58. But at the rate Justin Turner has been going, Ethier’s reign might not last the year.

Last year, the Dodger third baseman set a single-season franchise record with 19 HBPs, breaking Alex Cora’s previous and literal mark of 18. (Cora also held the Los Angeles career mark before Ethier.) That gave Turner 46 plunkings as a Dodger, putting him within 12 of Ethier — and Turner has averaged 14 HBPs over the past three seasons.

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Andre Ethier waits at the gate

The last official hit by the National League champion Los Angeles Dodgers in 2017 came from Andre Ethier, whose RBI single to right field in the sixth inning of Game 7 of the World Series put him on base for the 1,994th time in his regular-season and postseason career.

For this Spring Training, Ethier remains delayed at the gate with players still waiting to board major-league teams this year. What’s worse is that he’s not even in Group A or Group B. He’s camped out with his luggage near the Sbarro stand, hoping for a middle seat at best.

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Dodger rally capped by Cub slam in NLCS opener

gonzalez-hit

Photos: Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

By Jon Weisman

This game was nothing like it should have been, and everything it shouldn’t have been.

Bloops fell daintily for doubles. Liners zipped into gloves like magnets. Busted squeezes became steals of home.

The Dodgers should have been buried, but weren’t. Then they could have won going away, but didn’t.

Trailing for seven innings, then tying the game in the top of the eighth with Adrián González’s two-run single off human sonic boom Aroldis Chapman, the Dodgers fell to the Chicago Cubs in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series, 8-4, after a pinch-hit grand slam by Miguel Montero off Joe Blanton.

Still hoping for a road split, Los Angeles will send Clayton Kershaw to the Wrigley Field mound Sunday for Game 2, following a night of contemplating how nearly they stole their pennant series opener.

“It stings a little bit,” Dave Roberts said. “But just the way that we kept fighting and we kept playing … I felt that our at-bats all night long were quality. I thought we were gonna win it, but we’ll be ready to go tomorrow.”

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Andre Ethier to be on NLDS roster

LOS ANGELES DODGERS AT SAN DIEGO PADRES

Dodgers at Giants, 12:05 p.m.
Howie Kendrick, LF
Justin Turner, 3B
Corey Seager, SS
Yasiel Puig, RF
Adrián González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Joc Pederson, CF
Chase Utley, 2B
Kenta Maeda, P

By Jon Weisman

Andre Ethier will be on the Dodgers’ roster for the National League Division Series, Dave Roberts said before today’s regular-season finale at San Francisco.

Ethier joins fellow outfielders Yasiel Puig, Joc Pederson, Josh Reddick, Andrew Toles, Howie Kendrick, Kiké Hernández, though Ethier’s role would primarily be off the bench. Roberts praised the quality of Ethier’s at-bats since his return in September from six months on the disabled list.

With Ethier on the squad, that leaves at most one more opening for a position player. Right now, Charlie Culberson seems to be the leading candidate, if that slot doesn’t go to an extra pitcher. Potentially, Hernández’s spot would also be in jeopardy, which would be surprising given his presence in the big leagues essentially all season.

A Hill of beans in this crazy world

[mlbvideo id=”1157258183″ width=”550″ height=”308″ /]

Dodgers at Marlins, 10:10 a.m.
Chase Utley, 2B
Josh Reddick, RF
Corey Seager, SS
Adrián González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Joc Pederson, CF
Andre Ethier, LF
Howie Kendrick, 3B
Kenta Maeda, P

By Jon Weisman

I guess my wife and I picked the wrong day to take the family to Disneyland.

Exactly 51 years and one day after Sandy Koufax threw the last perfect game by a Dodger pitcher, Rich Hill nearly did the same (in a 5-0 Dodger victory). And in the process, he became the first Dodger pitcher since Hiroki Kuroda in 2008 to throw seven perfect innings — and the first ever to do so without facing another batter.

The controversy arose from the latter fact. In the overnight chatter since Hill was removed, many have had a chance to weigh in, and so with the Dodgers’ next game already about to start, I’m just going to highlight a few points …

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The 20 most pivotal regular-season moments in Los Angeles Dodger history

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Tommy Lasorda hugs R.J. Reynolds after the rookie’s unforgettable squeeze, whose 33rd anniversary is Sunday.

By Jon Weisman

Every Dodger fan is targeting the World Series, but you can’t get there without some regular-season magic.

The Dodgers have seen plenty in their 49 Southern California seasons, both in their favor and against them.

For good and for bad, here (in this Dodger Insider magazine story) are the ups and downs, the highs and lows — the 20 most pivotal regular-season moments in Los Angeles Dodger history.

Read the entire story by clicking here.

* * *

Beginning this year, the Dodgers merged their previously separate Playbill and Dodger Insider magazines into one publication (at least 80 pages per issue) with a new edition available each homestand plus one in October, 13 issues total. It is distributed at auto gates (one per vehicle) and via Fan Services for those who use alternate transportation. Dodger Insider magazine includes news, features, analysis, photos, games, stadium information and more. Fans who wish to subscribe for 2017 can do so at dodgers.com/magazine

Andre Ethier likely to escape DL this weekend in Miami

Jill Weisleder/Los Angeles Dodgers

Jill Weisleder/Los Angeles Dodgers

Not only has Clayton Kershaw been activated from the disabled list for this evening’s start at Miami, but Andre Ethier is poised to be placed on on the active roster for the first time this season.

The 34-year-old outfielder remains on the DL for at least one more game, but the Dodgers said he was en route today to Miami, and not, to paraphrase Humphrey Bogart in “Casablanca,” for the waters.

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Rancho Cucamonga wins ’16 playoff opener in 16

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By Jon Weisman

Noah Perio’s walkoff single in the 16th inning lifted Single-A Rancho Cucamonga past Lancaster, 4-3, in its California League quarterfinal best-of-three playoff opener.

Corey Copping (three innings), Alex Burgos (four) and Gavin Pittore (one) combined for eight innings of shutout relief to help the Quakes outlast the JetHawks. Erick Mejia went 3 for 6 with a walk, and Mike Ahmed went 2 for 5 with a homer and two walks.

In his 10th rehab game, Andre Ethier came to the plate seven times as designated hitter and had a home run and the leadoff single to start the bottom of the 16th.

For more from the Dodgers’ minor leagues Wednesday, click here.

Dodgers recall Puig, Barnes and Fields, activate Coleman and Ravin

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

By Jon Weisman

Yasiel Puig will be back in the Majors for the Dodgers’ September stretch run, joined by catcher-infielder Austin Barnes and pitchers Louis Coleman, Josh Fields and Josh Ravin.

Padres at Dodgers, 7:10 p.m.
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Yasiel Puig, RF
Yasmani Grandal, C
Kiké Hernandez, LF
Joc Pederson, CF
Julio Urías, P

Since he was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City on August 2, Puig played in 24 games for Triple-A Oklahoma City, with a .422 on-base percentage, .605 slugging percentage, five homers and nine walks against 11 strikeouts.

“For us, Yasiel’s done everything that was asked of him,” Dave Roberts said today in an interview with MLB Network about Puig, who will start tonight. “As we talked through things, we felt ultimately that he makes us better, with him keeping his end of the deal. It’s all about Yasiel becoming a better person, a better teammate, but also helping the Dodgers with baseball games.”

Said Puig to reporters this afternoon: “I earned the demotion to Triple-A. I feel that I’m now a better person, and I’m here to show it.”

Puig has a .320 on-base percentage, .386 slugging percentage and .706 OPS this season for the Dodgers. Between his return from the disabled list and his trip to the minors, he had a .390 OBP while slugging .440.

He joins a Dodger outfield that has Howie Kendrick, Joc Pederson, Josh Reddick, Andrew Toles, Kiké Hernandez and (though mainly an infielder) Rob Segedin.

Andre Ethier, who has played three nights in a row in rehab games with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga (including seven innings in right field Thursday), might not be far behind.

The 26-year-old Barnes wraps up his second season in Oklahoma City with a .380 on-base percentage, .443 slugging percentage and 18 stolen bases in 21 attempts, along with 43 walks against 53 strikeouts. In brief action with the Dodger this year, Barnes is 3 for 23 with three walks and a double.

Coleman pitched four shutout innings in rehab outings from August 22-30, allowing five hits while walking none and striking out six. With the Dodgers, he has a 3.70 ERA and 1.33 WHIP with 37 strikeouts in 41 1/3 innings. He had made six straight scoreless appearances before going on the disabled list August 3 with right shoulder fatigue.

Fields has pitched two innings for Oklahoma City since he was optioned August 23. He had allowed five earned runs and 18 baserunners in 9 2/3 innings as a Dodger since his August 1 acquisition from Houston.

Placed on the disabled list August 15 with right triceps inflammation, Ravin pitched in one rehab inning August 30 for Rancho Cucamonga, allowing a hit and a run with a strikeout. He has two shutout innings with the Dodgers this year.

Luis Avilan, a winning pitcher Wednesday thanks to Toles’ grand-slam heroics, was only temporarily on the team as the 26th man for the second game of the doubleheader, and officially returned to Triple-A today. Because he was optioned August 25, he isn’t eligible for a permanent recall until Sunday.

So as they start September, the Dodgers have 15 pitchers and 15 position players on their active roster  — with more to come.

How much will Dodgers fatten roster in September?

CHICAGO CUBS VS LOS ANGELES DODGERS

Cubs at Dodgers, 1:10 p.m.
Howie Kendrick, LF
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Kiké Hernandez, CF
Rob Segedin, RF
Yasmani Grandal, C
Charlie Culberson, 2B
Brock Stewart, P

By Jon Weisman

September 1, the date that active rosters can expand to as many as 40 players, has been in the Dodgers’ sightlines for some time — the seemingly perfect quirk in the schedule to serve a team that has depth in its pitching staff but not length.

Today, Dave Roberts told reporters that the Dodgers plan to activate Louis Coleman from the disabled list before Friday’s game (Thursday is actually an off day for Los Angeles, except for the Dodgers All-Access event) and also bring back reliever Casey Fien from the minors.

That would give the Dodgers a minimum of 14 pitchers, pending more possible additions as the month progresses. A recall of Luis Avilan and Josh Fields, who pitched recently for the Dodgers, would give them 16 arms. Brett Anderson, Scott Kazmir, Brandon McCarthy and Josh Ravin are on the 15-day disabled list, and so with the flick of paperwork, the pitching staff could number as many as 20.

Hopes remain for the return from the 60-day disabled list of Clayton Kershaw to the starting rotation and Alex Wood to the bullpen, and then you possibly have 22 pitchers. (That seems like a lot.) In those cases, however, someone currently on the 40-man roster would have to be displaced.

That’s why, despite his strong finish at Triple-A Oklahoma City and highly regarded prospect status, Jose De Leon — who is not on the 40-man roster yet — might not see action for Los Angeles this year. It hasn’t been ruled out, but it’s predicated on the status of the aforementioned score of pitchers.

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Two seasons, 80 Dodgers

CHICAGO CUBS VS LOS ANGELES DODGERS

By Jon Weisman

Dodger Stadium is the land of opportunity. In a month shy of two seasons, the Dodgers have used the equivalent of two 40-man rosters.

On Friday, Carlos Ruiz became the 80th person to play for the Dodgers since Opening Day 2015.

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Shawn Zarraga to back up at catcher tonight, while Scott Van Slyke is moved to 60-day DL

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers

Giants at Dodgers, 7:10 p.m.
Kiké Hernandez, CF
Howie Kendrick, LF
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Rob Segedin, RF
Charlie Culberson, 2B
Ross Stripling, P

By Jon Weisman

With Carlos Ruiz not arriving from the Phillies until Friday, Shawn Zarraga will come from Triple-A Oklahoma City tonight to serve as the Dodgers’ backup catcher.

Scott Van Slyke, who went on the 15-day disabled list August 9, has been moved to the 60-day DL to make room for Zarraga on the 40-man roster, which means Van Slyke will be sidelined for the remainder of the regular season.

Relief pitcher Luis Avilan has been optioned to Oklahoma City to make room on the 25-man roster for Zarraga.

In addition, Rob Segedin has been reinstated from the paternity list after missing Wednesday’s game, and will start tonight in right field.

The 27-year-old Zarraga would be making his Major League debut if he gets in the game tonight. He has a .348 on-base percentage this year in a season split between Oklahoma City and Double-A Tulsa. Los Angeles acquired him in December 2014.

Oklahoma City’s Austin Barnes, normally next in line for the Dodgers at catcher, has been sidelined since Tuesday after getting hit by a pitch in the hand.

Also: With an eye toward a September return, Andre Ethier begins his rehab assignment tonight with Single-A Rancho Cucamonga.

Andrew Toles recalled, Chris Taylor optioned

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS VS LOS ANGELES DODGERS

Dodgers at Reds, 10:10 a.m.
Chase Utley, 2B
Corey Seager, SS
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrián González, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Josh Reddick, RF
Joc Pederson, CF
Andrew Toles, LF
Julio Urías, P

By Jon Weisman

The Dodgers shifted one of their bench spots from right to left, calling up left-handed outfielder Andrew Toles from Triple-A Oklahoma City and optioning right-handed infielder Chris Taylor.

Toles, who will allow Howie Kendrick a rest today in left field, has a .395 on-base percentage and the same slugging percentage in 43 plate appearances for the Dodgers this year. Since he was most recently optioned August 3, he was producing at a .348/.565 rate in Triple-A.

Taylor has a .271 OBP and .382 slugging in 59 plate appearances for the Dodgers this year, including the July 15 game when he doubled, tripled and hit a grand slam. He went 0 for 3 Saturday in his first start since July 31,

BullpenThe Dodgers didn’t make any moves on the pitching side today. despite back-to-back 3 2/3-inning starts from Bud Norris and Brett Anderson to start the series in Cincinnati. At right, the chart shows the recent pitch counts of Dodger relievers.

Kenley Jansen had the rare event of appearing in a game without throwing a pitch. He was officially entered into Saturday’s seventh inning when the rain delay arrived, but replaced by Joe Blanton when play resumed.

Dave Roberts gave a quick update on Andre Ethier, telling reporters that Ethier is hitting off live pitching while on rehab in Arizona and taking balls off the bat in the outfield. Roberts still didn’t have a date for the start of an official rehab assignment, saying that Ethier’s running is at about 75 percent.

Andre Ethier isn’t saving up for a painy day

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By Jon Weisman

Today, Andre Ethier took batting practice on the Dodger Stadium field for the first time in 2016 — about four months after he intended.

As he continues to fight his way toward recovery from a fractured right tibia suffered in Spring Training, Ethier is in a similar situation to what Clayton Kershaw also expressed today — eager to return, making progress toward that return, but ultimately at the mercy of his body’s willingness to return.

“We’re just trying to take — I wouldn’t say steps, I would say we’re trying to take leaps because of how the timetable is,” Ethier said.

“Certain movements or certain things will flare up, but I think the key part of that is how my body reacts afterwards. Before, when I had those little pains or little flareups, they would last a day or last a couple days. Now, they’re lasting maybe minutes, which is a good sign.”

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Thompson heads to DL, Zach Walters recalled

Screen Shot 2016-07-16 at 1.15.39 PMBy Jon Weisman

Trayce Thompson, who hasn’t been able to shake a lower back irritation despite the All-Star Break, has become the 20th Dodger to go on the disabled list this season (retroactive to July 10).

Taking his place on the active roster will be infielder-outfielder Zach Walters, who is already on the 40-man roster.

The 26-year-old Walters was acquired during the opening week of the season from Cleveland and has spent the entire season with Triple-A Oklahoma City. He has a .346 on-base percentage and 491 slugging percentage in 77 games, with 15 doubles and 10 homers, while playing every position except catcher. (Yes, he even pitched to seven batters this year.)

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