Dodger Thoughts

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

Tag: Marquis Grissom

The worst play in baseball: The walkoff balk

In the online baseball world this week, a fun conversation materialized out of a nicely written column by Meg Rowley of Fangraphs: “What is your favorite sort of baseball play?”

With so many great options, there could hardly be a wrong answer to the question (FYI, I’m not making a dare here). I went with the Rodney McCray, epitomizing a fantasy I’ve had of basically making the most memorable, full-sprint, throw-your-body-into-oblivion catch of all time.

Happy as I was to enjoy everyone’s favorites, which together formed a scrapbook of what makes baseball such a treat, the conversation delivered me (with a little help from Tuesday’s Keone Kela trade) to what might be my least favorite baseball play, or certainly one of the dumbest: the walkoff balk.

I’m not big on bans — and certainly, this would be among the most trivial you might find — but this play should be banned.

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Is Alex Guerrero up there swinging? Check out his homer-walk ratio

Los Angeles Dodgers vs Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Dodgers at Phillies, 4:05 p.m.
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Howie Kendrick, 2B
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
Andre Ethier, LF
Yasiel Puig, RF
Joc Pederson, CF
Alberto Callaspo, 3B
A.J. Ellis, C
Brett Anderson, P

By Jon Weisman

Just out of curiosity, I took a look at Baseball Reference to see if the Dodgers had ever had a player hit double-digit homers in a season without having double-digit walks. Sure enough, Alex Guerrero has a chance to be the first.

Guerrero has 11 homers and five walks this year. The fewest walks by any Dodger with at least 10 homers belong to Glenn Wright, who had 11 homers and 12 walks in 1932.

Marquis Grissom is the lone Dodger this century to hit at least 10 homers in a season and have more homers than walks: 21 homers, 16 walks in 2001.

The only other Dodger to fit this description is Don Demeter, who had 18 homers and 16 walks in 1959. Raul Mondesi had 16 homers and 16 walks in 1994, as well as 30 homers and 30 walks in 1998.

If you think Guerrero’s numbers are unusual, just keep this in mind: He’s no Todd Greene. With the Texas Rangers, Greene had 10 homers and two walks — twice. First in 2002, then again in 2003.

The 2011 Dodger Creditor Awards

Nominees were selected from the pool of Top 40 creditors mentioned in the Dodgers’ bankruptcy filing today, with what they were owed this week.

The Big Kahuna Award: Manny Ramirez, $20.99 million
Hall of Infamy Award: Andruw Jones, $11.08 million
Owed but Charitable Award: Hiroki Kuroda, $4.48 million
Medic-Alert Award: Rafael Furcal, $3.73 million
Hooray for the Other Team Award: Chicago White Sox, $3.50 million
“Ted” for Short (And We Are Short) Award: Theodore Lilly, $3.42 million
Don’t Take a Hike Award: Zach Lee, $3.4 million
Duty Free Award: Kazuhisa Ishii, $3.30 million
Ooh, Repay Award: Juan Uribe, $3.24 million
Juan for Two Award: Juan Pierre, $3.05 million
Griss for the Mill Award: Marquis Grissom, $2.72 million
Food for Thought Award: Levy Restaurants, $588,322
There’s a New Kid in Town Award: Alex Santana, $499,500
Dodger Talk (and No Action) Award: KABC-AM Radio 790, $273,321
Okay, This Has Stopped Being Fun Award: Office of Finance – City of Los Angeles (City Business Tax Audit 2007-2009), $240,563

Jayson Stark has more on today’s news at Also, for Variety, I looked at the Dodgers’ bankruptcy filing from the TV angle.

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