Your 2013 Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Week That Was
LAA – 2-5 (Baseball Prospectus Playoff Odds as of 8/13: 0.0%.)
That’s ZERO for those of you keeping score at home. For the rest of you, it’s also ZERO.
LAD – 4-2 (Baseball Prospectus Playoff Odds as of 8/13: 98.8%.)
Down one-tenth of a percentage from last week. PANIC!
Southern California’s Burgeoning Pissing Contest: The Leader In The Clubhouse
The Dodgers can do nothing wrong. (Except for this, apparently.)
Box Score Of The Week
LAA – Joe Blanton (in relief): 2.1 IP, 4 H, 4 R, BB, 3 K, 2 HR
WHY IS THIS EVEN A THING THAT IS ALLOWED TO HAPPEN ANYMORE?!
LAD – Clayton Kershaw: 8 IP, 3 H, 0 R, BB, 8 K
NL Cy Young? Yep. NL MVP? Probably. He’s on pace to win his second NL Cy Young in three years. He’s also only 25 years old. Think about what you were doing when you were 25 … no, no … on second thought, don’t do that.
AL & NL West Standings Update
LAA – 55-69 (4th place, and 16.5 games behind the first-place Texas Rangers)
LAD – 72-52 (FIRST place and 7.5 games ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks)
Headline Of The Week
From Grant Brisbee’s “What’s the best-case scenario for Albert Pujols?” for Baseball Nation on 8/20.
A must-read article from one of my favorite baseball writers on the planet. But before you click the link above …
Just in case you’d forgotten about Pujols’ contract, or chosen to forget about Albert Pujols’ contract, or are on mind-altering drugs at the moment because Pujols’ contract has made life unbearable and you needed to escape, FEAST YOUR EYES UPON THIS:
10 years/$240M (2012-21). Signed by LA Angels as a free agent 12/8/11. 12:$12M, 13:$16M, 14:$23M, 15:$24M, 16:$25M, 17:$26M, 18:$27M, 19:$28M, 20:$29M, 21:$30M. Milestone bonuses: $3M for 3,000 hits. $7M for 763 HRs. Full no-trade protection.
If you’re an Angels fan, I hope you brought a change of pants.
Quotes Of The Week
From Bill Shaikin’s “Despite Angels’ woes, and 8-2 loss to Astros, Mike Scioscia wants more” for the Los Angeles Times on 8/16.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia on the shortcomings of this year’s Halos squad.
“I don’t think anything that Arte has stated about wanting to be a perennial contender has changed. He has given us terrific teams. This one has struggled in some areas. We need to get better. It’s on all of us. It’s the staff. It’s myself. We only know one way to meet the challenge, and that is head-on.”
While the honesty and accountability in that quote is admirable, I can’t help but wonder if this group of Angels might respond better to a new voice on the bench and in the clubhouse. Scioscia is the longest-tenured manager in baseball (14 years) and has a great track record, but his production (especially since the Angels made the payroll jump from medium-market-team to large-market-team in 2004) has been disappointing (save 2007-2009). Missing the playoffs for a fourth year in a row can’t be sittting well with Arte Moreno.
The big question is … If you were to fire Scioscia, where the hell would you go from there? It’s not like there’s a glowing crop of potentially fantastic managers waiting to be hired that the Angels could harvest. And with a relatively new GM (Jerry Dipoto), a big-ticket 25-man roster, little-to-no farm system and a clear need to rebuild/reload/redirect the franchise, it’s hard to believe that shoving a new face and philosophy into the fold would make that process any easier. I have no suggestions, which is why I’m a fan and a writer and not making front office decisions for anyone. So, I put the question to you … Should Scioscia get canned? If so, who’s next? If not, how the hell is he ever gonna right this ship?
From Bill Shaikin’s “Dodgers refuse to lose, rallying to beat Mets in 12th inning” for the Los Angeles Times on 8/15.
Yasiel Puig, on the Dodgers improbable comeback from a four-run deficit, which was highlighted by a two-run game-tying home run by Andre Ethier in the bottom of the ninth and his own hustle-double in the bottom of the 12th.
“There is nothing impossible in this game.”
It certainly seems that way, doesn’t it?
DERP Of The Week: Don Mattingly
80-grad DADHAT. Elite fivehead. 65-grade brow furrow. I can’t even. What.
SciosciaFace Of The Week
What caused this version of SciosciaFace?
- Joe Blanton. (PHENOMENAL BP pitcher.)
- Tommy Hanson. (Salt Lake Bee.)
- Sean Burnett. (Perpetually disabled.)
- Ryan Madson. (DFA.)
- Nothing. Nothing at all.
MattinglyFace Of The Week
“I can’t feel my face. I can’t feel my limbs. I can’t feel my- WHOA DUDE THE WALLS ARE MELTING DID THAT CHAIR JUST TURN INTO A DRAGON I CAN’T
Clearly the blissed-out Hunter S. Thompson version of the Matt-O-Lantern. This is heaven, right?
Who Controls The Future
The Angels have 22 of their remaining 38 games against teams that are contending for the playoffs (CLE, TB, OAK, TEX). Things are bound to get worse, and a .500 finish (given their current record, could be seen as a small victory, but yeah … this season has been disastrous in almost every way. If there’s a bright spot, it’s that Mike Trout is actually Mike Trout and that they’ll have him for the next three seasons (before he bolts for the east coast and a ginormous pay day). It’s a shame that they’re wasting his best years as in an Angels uniform.
The Dodgers, on the other hand, have 26 of their 38 remaining games against teams that aren’t even in playoff contention (and I’m counting the Dbacks as semi-contenders, FWIW). They barely ever lose, their rotation is disgusting (in a good way), they’re incredibly lucky, and Matt Kemp should be back fairly soon.
Given their current pace, they’re a 90-win team for sure, and a 95-win team if things keep going well. As I said last week, the only thing that keeps them from being a second-half beast/postseason juggernaut is complacency. At this point, I can’t see that happening. The team is having too much fun, has too much momentum and too much potential to get even better for that to be an option. And Kershaw/Greinke/Ryu as your postseason 1-2-3? Uh, you’re toast. Thanks for playing.
Until next week …