Dodger Thoughts

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

Tag: Brandon Beachy (Page 1 of 2)

Kazmir and Bolsinger under watchful eyes

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Padres at Dodgers, 1:05 p.m.
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Yasiel Puig, RF
Justin Turner, 3B
Kiké Hernandez, SS
A.J. Ellis C
Joc Pederson, CF
Corey Brown, LF
Cody Bellinger, 1B
Mike Bolsinger, P
Dodgers at Brewers, 1:05 p.m.
Carl Crawford, LF
Chase Utley, 2B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Alex Guerrero, 3B
Trayce Thompson, CF
Rob Segedin, 1B
Charlie Culberson, SS
Rico Noel, RF
Scott Kazmir, P

By Cary Osborne

Today marks Scott Kazmir’s first Cactus League outing since March 9, when he allowed six hits, two walks and five earned runs against the Angels.

Kazmir faces the Milwaukee Brewers at Maryvale Baseball Park.

He pitched in a B game against the White Sox at Camelback Ranch on March 14. A lot was made of Kazmir’s fastball velocity in the B game, reportedly in the mid- to high-80s, so Spring Training game or not, people will be eager to watch this one.

The same could be said about the matchup against the Padres at Camelback Ranch where Mike Bolsinger continues his campaign for the fifth-starter spot.

The right-hander threw four shutout innings against the Brewers on March 14, allowing two hits and walk, striking out two.

Here’s how the three fifth-starter candidates have done so far:

  • Bolsinger: 9 IP, 5 H, 3 BB, 6 SO, 2 ER
  • Zach Lee: 8 IP, 7 H, 2 BB, 4 SO, 4 ER
  • Brandon Beachy: 7 IP, 8 H, 7 BB, 2 SO, 6 ER

However, Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reported on Saturday that Beachy was dealing with a sore arm and will rest for a few days while being evaluated. Beachy told Gurnick today that it’s mild tendinitis and he doesn’t believe it’s too serious.

Scott Van Slyke was originally in today’s lineup at first base against the Padres, but was scratched due to a sore right hip flexor. Gurnick reported on Twitter that Van Slyke will rest one or two days.

In case you missed it: Infield candidates step up

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Dodgers at Rockies, 1:10 p.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Chase Utley, 2B
Andre Ethier, LF
Scott Van Slyke, RF
Kiké Hernandez, SS
A.J. Ellis, C
Cody Bellinger, 1B
Charlie Culberson 3B
Clayton Kershaw, P

By Jon Weisman

Charlie Culberson, Elian Herrera and Brandon Hicks, whose roles as reserves could increase over the next two weeks of Spring Training – if not Opening Day – while Corey Seager recovers from his strained left knee, each enjoyed spotlight moments Saturday for the twice-victorious Dodgers.

In a pair of topsy-turvy games Saturday, the Dodgers scored the winning runs in the bottom of the ninth against the Cubs and in the top of the 10th against the Mariners.

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In case you missed it: Sandy salute

Los Angeles Dodgers workout

By Jon Weisman

Though the legendary Sandy Koufax no longer has a formal role with the Dodgers, as Ken Gurnick of MLB.com writes, that doesn’t mean he can’t stop by Camelback Ranch for a nice hello.

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In case you missed it: Pulling Puig’s teeth

Dave Roberts speaks to the team today during first full-squad meeting of the year.

Dave Roberts speaks to the team today during first full-squad meeting of the year.

By Jon Weisman

On the day TMZ rumored that Yasiel Puig was getting the world’s greatest helicopter, the Dodger outfielder’s chopper concerns were much more down to earth. Like so many of us have, Puig went through the rite of passage of having his wisdom teeth removed Tuesday.

According to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com, Puig’s jaw remained swollen today. It’s hoped he’ll return to baseball activity Friday.

Meanwhile, sink your pearly whites into these morsels…

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Brandon Beachy to be non-roster player at Spring Training

The Dodgers have outrighted pitcher Brandon Beachy to Triple-A, with the right-hander coming to big-league Spring Training at Camelback Ranch as the team’s 17th non-roster player (seven of them pitchers).

Beachy signed a one-year contract with the Dodgers on January 6. Los Angeles now has 39 players on its 40-man roster.

— Jon Weisman

BABIP: Brandon Alan Beachy in play for Dodgers

On July 11, Brandon Beachy threw 78 pitches in his first MLB game since 2014. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Brandon Beachy prepares to take the mound July 11 for his first MLB game since 2013. (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

By Jon Weisman

Brandon Beachy, who made two starts for the Dodgers last year during his attempt to comeback from a second Tommy John surgery, has signed a one-year contract with Los Angeles for 2016.

The 29-year-old right-hander still has a 3.36 career ERA (3.41 FIP) with 9.1 strikeouts per nine innings and a 1.16 WHIP. However, he has made only seven Major League starts in the past three years, including a pair of four-inning efforts for the Dodgers in July.

Beachy’s July 11 start for the Dodgers, in which he allowed three runs, was his first MLB outing in nearly 23 months. In his second game July 20, he was one strike away from retiring his eighth batter in a row before faltering. Each time, he blamed his inability to execute his pitches rather than his stuff.

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Dodger minor league report No. 16: Mike Bolsinger, Carlos Frias, Jose Peraza and more

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By Jon Weisman

Mike Bolsinger and Carlos Frias, the two Dodger starting pitchers displaced by Mat Latos and Alex Wood, each had early exits from their first starts back with Triple-A Oklahoma City this week.

Bolsinger was hit in the forearm Tuesday by a batted ball and departed after three-plus innings, after allowing three runs on six hits. Don Mattingly relayed to reporters Wednesday that Bolsinger isn’t expected to miss his next scheduled start.

Frias, who was officially optioned to Triple-A on Sunday, started Wednesday for Oklahoma City, pitched one shutout inning and then took his leave. Mattingly told reporters after the Dodgers’ victory in Philadelphia last night that Frias “felt something” and was removed as a precaution, then added today that Frias was undergoing further tests.

Joe Wieland ended up pitching five innings in relief, allowing five earned runs on 10 hits and a walk while striking out five.

Two other recent Dodger starting pitchers have resumed work for Oklahoma City. Zach Lee allowed one earned run in seven innings (striking out three) August 2, and Brandon Beachy — who was accepted an assignment to Triple-A after clearing waivers — allowed five earned runs in six innings August 3.

Now, on with our tour of the Dodger minor leagues …

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Beachy, Heisey, Tsao designated for assignment in roster shuffle

Brandon Beachy (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

Brandon Beachy (Jon SooHoo/Los Angeles Dodgers)

By Jon Weisman

With today’s big transactions, the Dodgers had to reconfigure space on the 40-man roster to make all the pieces fit.

Three players who have suited up for the Dodgers this year — Brandon Beachy, Chris Heisey and Chin-hui Tsao — were designated for assignment.

A fourth, Chris Hatcher, was moved to the 60-day disabled list, meaning that he can’t be activated until mid-August.

Michael Morse, who came from Miami today, was also designated for assignment. Taking on Morse’s contract helped the Dodgers acquire Mat Latos without sacrificing more in prospects than Jeff Brigham, Victor Araujo and Kevin Guzman.

Bronson Arroyo, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, was placed on the 60-day disabled list, while infield prospect Jose Peraza was optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

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Dodgers activate Carl Crawford, option Beachy

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Dodgers at Braves, 4:10 p.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Scott Van Slyke, LF
Yasiel Puig, RF
Kiké Hernandez, SS
Austin Barnes, C
Brett Anderson, P

By Jon Weisman

After nearly two months on the disabled list, Carl Crawford returns to active duty today for the Dodgers.

Los Angeles will have an extra position player for the next few games, having optioned right-hander Brandon Beachy to Triple-A Oklahoma City. The Dodgers likely to make at least one more move to bring back a starting pitcher for Saturday in New York, with Zach Lee (who pitched six shutout innings for Oklahoma City on Monday before allowing two runs in the seventh) among the possibilities.

Crawford had a .260 on-base percentage and .408 slugging percentage in 50 plate appearances before his sight oblique strain April 27. Last year, from August 10 through the end of the 2014 regular season, Crawford had a .463 OBP and .606 slugging in his final 135 plate appearances.

He is expected to fill the role of a fourth outfielder at the outset.

To re-open a vacancy on the 40-man roster for Crawford, the Dodgers designated right-handed pitcher Preston Guilmet for assignment. Guilmet, who was claimed by the Dodgers on July 10, allowed one run in three innings of relief for Oklahoma City.

 

Dodgers tease, then tumble in Atlanta

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By Jon Weisman

It’s not much of a secret — something that anyone might assume with any amount of time spent thinking about it — but covering a live event, you start crafting your thoughts in advance, in anticipation of what seems probable, or even possible.

Even if you’re never going to use them.

So there’s Brandon Beachy on the mound in the bottom fourth inning for the Dodgers. After allowing a two-run homer (the first of the year by Nick Markakis) in the first inning, and despite some control problems, he’s on a bit of a roll. He’s retired his last (let me count) one, two, three, four, five, six, seven hitters, he’s got a 1-2 count on No. 7 hitter Eury Perez, and he’s one strike away from “Beachy has settled down to retire eight Braves in a row.”

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How hot? So hot …

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Dodgers at Nationals, 10:35 a.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Andre Ethier, LF
Yasmani Grandal, C
Yasiel Puig, RF
Alberto Callaspo, 3B
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Zack Greinke, P

By Jon Weisman

Hopefully, Zack Greinke’s Florida roots will come in handy today, because this is gonna be a steamy one.

Greinke has thrown 35 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings and retired 36 of his past 37 batters, but those numbers will be challenged not only by Bryce Harper and the Washington Nationals, but also by the triple digit heat index in Washington D.C. during today’s game.

Facing fellow All-Star righty Max Scherzer in today’s primo pitching matchup, Greinke would need six scoreless innings to move pass Clayton Kershaw for third place on the Los Angeles Dodgers all-time streak list, behind (as if I need to tell you) Orel Hershiser and Don Drysdale.

Here are some other pregame notes:

  • Carl Crawford will rejoin the Dodgers in Atlanta on Monday, with his activation from the disabled list imminent. Don Mattingly told reporters today that figuring out how to create a roster spot for Crawford is not an easy decision. Counting Alex Guerrero and Kiké Hernandez, Crawford’s return would give Los Angeles a surplus of seven outfielders, pending the next roster move. Alberto Callaspo could be vulnerable, though he is the team’s only infielder off the bench that can bat from the left side.
  • How did Clayton Kershaw strike out Harper three times Saturday? According to Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles, in conversation with Don Mattingly after the game, “Kershaw attacked Harper’s weaknesses by elevating hard fastballs just enough to get him to swing and getting into counts in which he could use either breaking ball to devastating effect.”
  • Brandon Beachy’s second start after his second Tommy John surgery will take place Monday at his first MLB home, Atlanta — but Beachy is trying not to think about that, he told J.P. Hoornstra of the Daily News.

 

Farhan Zaidi discusses Dodger draft signings

Dodgers at Nationals, 4:05 p.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Yasiel Puig, RF
Andre Ethier, LF
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Mike Bolsinger, P

By Jon Weisman

Hours before they started the second half of their season in Washington, the Dodgers met the deadline for singing players from the 2015 amateur draft by locking up first-round draft choice Walker Buehler, sixth-rounder Edwin Rios and 30th-rounder Logan Crouse.

Buehler’s signing came amid some media reports today that he had an elbow issue.

“We’re not going to comment on anything medically related to Walker,” Dodger general manager Farhan Zaidi said. “We’re obviously excited to have him on board. He finished the college season strong, obviously pitched in the College World Series.”

Rios, who had a .421 on-base percentage and .591 slugging percentage with 18 home runs in 61 games for Florida International in his junior season this year, was the only corner infielder in the first 10 rounds of Dodger draft selections. Negotiations went down to the wire.

“We went really pitching heavy,” Zaidi said, “so being able to get a college bat with some polish and hopefully the ability to hit in the middle of the lineup is exciting. It took a little bit of time to hammer out the deal, so the lost development time is unfortunate, but we’re obviously excited to have him now. We’ll start him out in Arizona and hopefully move out to one of the other clubs shortly thereafter.”

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Brandon Beachy goes four innings in MLB return

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By Jon Weisman

Three cheers for Brandon Beachy, who no longer has to say his last Major League game was August 20, 2013.

The 28-year-old right-hander officially put his second Tommy John surgery behind him, going four innings and throwing 78 pitches tonight, before being replaced at the start of the fifth inning by Chin-hui Tsao.

His fastball ran between 88-93 mph, with his slider at 82-85 mph.

Beachy was touched up for three runs in the third inning, allowing a leadoff single to pitcher Taylor Jungmann after five foul balls and two outs later, long doubles to the left-field wall that Andre Ethier got near but couldn’t glove. (On the first, the ball ricocheted off the wall, then Ethier’s knee, then into the stands, and was ruled a ground-rule double.)

Watching Beachy, the one thing that was hard not to notice was how few swinging strikes he had. In those 78 pitches, Brewer batters swung and missed at three, taking 10 for called strikes, compared with 19 fouls and 14 put in play. Nevertheless, it was a wonderful step forward for a pitcher who has certainly put in countless hours toward making it back.

Beachy through 4 IP

Update: Beachy was mostly unhappy with how he pitched, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com

“I was really excited to get out there and I’m really disappointed now,” said Beachy. “It’s not the way I pictured it for 23 months, but it is what it is. It took me way too long to get settled in. I’ve just got to be better than that.

“I fought to get the ball today and didn’t back that up the way I wanted. That’s where my disappointment is.”

Said Don Mattingly: “A little bit rusty for me. But you can also see what’s there, if he gets his command where he needs it. You see the stuff there.”

 

Matt West designated for assignment

Brewers at Dodgers, 7:10 p.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Yasiel Puig, RF
Andre Ethier, LF
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Brandon Beachy, P

By Jon Weisman

To make room on the Dodgers’ 25-man and 40-man rosters for the activation of Brandon Beachy, the Dodgers optioned Josh Ravin to Triple-A Oklahoma City and designated Matt West for assignment.

West has a near-perfect ERA when you combine his Double-A and Dodger stints, though at Triple-A, his ERA was 7.20, allowing 30 baserunners in 20 innings with 14 strikeouts.

The Dodgers’ acquired West on May 4.

Dodgers are Beachy keen for Saturday

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Brewers at Dodgers, 7:10 p.m.
Joc Pederson, CF
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Justin Turner, 3B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Yasmani Grandal, C
Yasiel Puig, RF
Alex Guerrero, LF
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Mike Bolsinger, P

By Jon Weisman

After some hawing and some hemming, Don Mattingly confirmed this afternoon that Brandon Beachy would start for the Dodgers on Saturday — his first Major League start since August 20, 2013.

Mattingly said the organization was satisfied that Beachy is physically ready to take this next step in his comeback, but waited to confirm that he was mentally ready. Through conversations, Mattingly said the team determined that Beachy “absolutely” was.

“We can’t do anything more to get him more ready for this first start,” Mattingly said of Beachy, who arrived in the clubhouse today.

Among other things, this will be Beachy’s third career game at Dodger Stadium, where he has allowed two runs in 12 1/3 innings while striking out 13.

Beachy is recovering from his second Tommy John surgery. When he came back after the first operation, he allowed 10 runs in 10 innings over his first two starts, then two runs over 14 innings in his next two.

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