Sabathia Not To Los Angeles

C.C. Sabathia will be not be heading to Los Angeles. Although Major League Baseball has not made an official announcement, various sources believe that the Milwaukee Brewers struck a deal with the Cleveland Indians sometime in the afternoon. Regardless of whether this deal is true or not, the Dodgers are officially out of the sweepstakes.

The centerpieces of this potential deal are C.C. Sabathia and Matt LaPorta. Sabathia has already established himself as a premiere ace in Major League Baseball. Matt LaPorta, on the other hand, is a promising young outfielder in AA Baseball. The Indians essentially made a long-term investment for the future by letting go of one of their present stars.

The Indians will need power batters in the future. LaPorta's 20 HRs and 66 RBIs in AA Huntsville is right up in their alley. Thus, their organization decided to deal for the prospect rather than invest in the Dodgers' generous offerings of established players, such as Derek Lowe.

This reminds me of the deal that brought Hanley Ramirez to the Florida Marlins. The Marlins let go of Josh Beckett, one of their top aces at the time, for a player that had a bright future. Evidently, their organization made a smart move as Ramirez is now regarded as one of Major League Baseball's top shortstops in the game.

C.C. Sabathia, now part of the Milwaukee Brewers, will be a free-agent in 2008. Unless the Brewers decide to extend his contract, he will be up for grabs during the off-season. The Dodgers may have another chance to add Sabathia into their starting-rotation.

No Happy Endings

What ever happened to happy endings?

The Giants defeated the Dodgers today, 5-2. But you can not point the finger at Chan Ho Park. He struck out seven batters and only gave up one run through six innings. However, his solid performance was wasted by the bullpen.
Joe Beimel and Brian Falkenborg combined to give up four earned-runs on three hits while only getting two outs. Earlier in the 2008 season, the Dodgers' bullpen was regarded as one of the best in Major League Baseball. Despite this horrific performance, the Dodgers' bullpen is still one of the finest around.
In all of Major League Baseball, the Dodgers rank third with the lowest bullpen ERA (3.11). As imaginable, this statistic is higher than it was earlier in the season. Evidently, however, this commendable ERA is still among the best in the league.
Also, the Dodgers' bullpen ranks second-overall in the strike-outs column (265). This can be attributed to Hong-Chih Kuo and Takashi Saito. Together, the two relief pitchers amass for about 40% of the bullpen's total strikeouts.
Eric Stults will be pitching for the Dodgers tomorrow against the San Francisco Giants. Hopefully, the Dodgers' bullpen will revert back to their dominant ways. If not, Ned Colletti and the Dodgers have some major issues on their hands.Picture of the Day:
From the Camera of George Nikitin (AP Photo)

Colletti Looking for a Shortstop. Know Anyone?

Ned Colletti is on the lookout for a new shortstop. However, the General Manager has not yet posted a listing in the local paper. Hopefully, Los Angeles will find a reliable replacement for Furcal at shortstop before it is too late and the Dodgers are out of the playoff picture.

The Dodgers expected Angel Berroa and Luis Maza to hold up the infield until Rafael Furcal returned. But that won't be anytime soon as Furcal recently went underneath the knife for back surgery. The Dodgers must find someone to fill up their gap in the diamond.

It is rumored that the Dodgers are willing to trade:

  • Matt Kemp
  • James Loney
  • Andre Ethier
  • Andy LaRoche
  • Derek Lowe
It's surprising that the Dodgers are that desperate for a shortstop. Is Ned Colletti really going to trade away all of Los Angeles' promising young stars? We will find out.

Jones Back

The Dodgers welcomed outfielder, Andruw Jones, to their line-up in yesterday's game against the Houston Astros. Although the fans were pleased by Los Angeles' 10-7 victory, they were not happy about Andruw Jones' ugly performance. The batter could not get on-base, striking out four times in the game.

Jones hit the Disabled-List in May with a knee injury. The new Dodger was batting .165 at the time and many fans were pleased to hear the news that Jones would be out of the line-up. The Dodgers finally had an opportunity to start Andre Ethier, Juan Pierre, and Matt Kemp simultaneously in the outfield as the fans desired.

Joe Torre passed of his slugger's pitiful performance by saying that, "He's rehabbing right now." Since Torre's days in the Big Apple, he has always established a fair ground with his players built around mutual respect. The last thing the veteran manager wanted to do was to say something negative to the press that would send the athlete into an even deeper slump.

The former-Brave will get Sunday off. Working two days and getting a day off? This is a schedule that the outfielder could get used to.

Dodgers Look Into Sabathia

I apologize for the recent inactivity. I have been considering whether or not to taking my blogging to the next level by purchasing a domain and either moving to Wordpress.Com or staying on Blogger. Thus far, I have been unable to make any major decisions or progress.

In recent reports, the Dodgers have been chasing after C.C. Sabathia of the Cleveland Indians. The premiere ace has a 6-8 record thus far in the 2008 Regular Season. However, despite his mediocre record, he is a hot item on the market as the trade deadline whips around the corner.

There have also been reports that Sabathia could head over to the Yankees, Brewers, and Phillies. The more potential suitors, the less of a chance that we'll see Sabathia in a Dodgers jersey. But, the Dodgers' current offer (rumored, not official yet) seems quite promising:
  • Chin-Ling Hu
  • Andy LaRoche
  • James McDonald
Here is the Brewers' best offer to the Indians:
  • Matt LaPorta
Evidently, the Dodgers are being more generous than the Milwaukee Brewers. We will see how this story develops in the upcoming weeks.

Weaver's No-Hitter To Go Down as Loss?

Jered Weaver of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is currently throwing a no-hitter over in Los Angeles. However, the Dodgers are winning Game Two of the Freeway Series, 1-0. It would be shocking if Weaver's spectacular no-hitter goes down as a loss in the record books.

In the bottom of the fifth-inning, Matt Kemp reached first-base on a fielding error. Then he broke for second-base and advanced to third-base on a throwing error. Blake DeWitt's sacrifice-flyball to right-field brought Kemp home to put the Dodgers ahead, 1-0.

Chad Billingsley has been pitching well in tonight's game. Thus far, he has struck out seven batters in 6.2 innings on the mound. But since he has already thrown 109 pitches in tonight's game thus far, it looks as if Joe Torre will throw in a relief pitcher to start the eighth-inning.

On a personal note, I picked up a copy of the 2008 Dodgers Yearbook earlier today. It highlights 50 Years of Dodgers History and includes the usual colorful player pages. I'll be sure to share any interesting facts that I find out while reading about the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Juan Pierre for Adam Dunn?

There is a rumor circulating around Los Angeles that the Dodgers may trade Juan Pierre, Chin-Lung Hu and cash for Reds' slugger, Adam Dunn. This rumor has not yet been confirmed by either of the organizations. However, this potential trade would hurt the Dodgers' organization.

Although Adam Dunn has sensational power, evident in his 18 HRs and 44 RBIs in 2008 thus far, he cannot hit for contact. His current .221 average has been hurting the Reds' organization. Since Dodgers fans have been dissatisfied with Andruw Jones' .165 batting-average in 2008, they will probably become angered if Adam Dunn struggles at the plate to hit for contact in a Dodgers' uniform. He's not the full package of power and contact.

The Dodgers cannot afford to lose outfielder, Juan Pierre. Although Pierre has been the subject of criticism in the 2008 Regular Season thus far, his spectacular 34 SBs has been quite beneficial to the Dodgers' offense. He may also serve as a permanent lead-off man until Rafael Furcal fully restores his abilities. After he comes off of the Disabled-List, it is suspected that he will still need some additional time to adjust back to Major League Baseball.

Chin-Lung Hu may not be the future of the Dodgers' organization at second-base. But he is a solid infielder with a bright career ahead of him. Los Angeles may need his duties in the future if one of their middle-infielders hits the Disabled-List or if Delwyn Young, their probable player to succeed Jeff Kent at second-base, struggles. Hu is insurance.

Game Notes: Freeway Series (Game One)

The Los Angeles Dodgers have a comfortable 6-0 lead over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim heading into the eighth inning of Game One of the Freeway Series. As of this point, it looks as if Chan Ho Park will receive his third win of the 2008 Regular Season. He had a spectacular outing tonight, striking out a total of seven batters in six innings of work. Below are some additional notes on the spectacular game thus far.

  • Russell Martin smashed a homerun in the bottom of the first-inning to put the Dodgers on the scoreboard. The catcher has smacked eight homeruns in 2008 thus far. Be sure to send him to New York for the 2008 All-Star Game by clicking this link and voting for him.
  • In the bottom of the third-inning, the Dodgers perfected a double-steal. Juan Pierre broke for third-base and Russell Martin hustled over to second-base. Unfortunately, neither runners were able to score during the inning.
  • After a throwing error pushed Matt Kemp to third-base in the bottom of the fifth inning, Jeff Kent's sacrifice-flyball brought him home. Then, James Loney hit an RBI-single afterwards to put the Dodgers ahead of the Angels, 3-0.
  • Justin Speier relieved Angels' pitcher, Joe Saunders, in the bottom of the sixth-inning. Saunders pitched five innings, surrendering two earned-runs on five hits. He did not look as dominant tonight as he did during his last start against the Dodgers.
  • In the top of the seventh-inning, Brian Falkborg came in to replace starter, Chan Ho Park, on the mound. Falkborg went on to pitch a perfect frame, striking out one batter. Although he throws a fair share of balls relative to strikes, he has been a sensational asset to the Dodgers' organization in 2008 thus far.
  • Andre Ethier put the Dodgers ahead 6-0 over their cross-town rivals with a monstrous three-run homer in the bottom of the seventh-inning. Luis Maza and Russell Martin came in to score on the play. He now has seven homeruns in 2008 thus far.
  • Takashi Saito and Jonathan Broxton pitched perfect innings to finish off the Angels in Game One of the Freeway Series. Game Two is scheduled for later today at 10:10 PM EST. Chad Billingsley will be pitching for the Los Angeles Dodgers against the Angels' Jered Weaver.

Update: Brad Penny

Brad Penny will not pitch in today's simulated game, confirmed the Los Angeles Times. The hurler recently experienced discomfort after throwing from the mound on Wednesday. He will need more time than Hiroki Kuroda to return to the Dodgers' starting-rotation.

Penny is eligible to come off of the Disabled-List as early as next week. Yet, the hurler is in no shape to return. He cannot even face batters at this stage in the game. Despite being scratched from today's simulated game, Penny will throw some pitches to a catcher.

Update: Hiroki Kuroda

Hiroki Kuroda is expected to return to the Dodgers' starting-rotation on Tuesday or Wednesday. The injured hurler was scratched from yesterday's simulated game due to a stiff-neck. Hopefully, his return to the mound will not be delayed further.

Kuroda has another simulated game scheduled for later today. His performance in the start will truly determine whether or not he is ready to return from the Disabled-List. Since the Dodgers are not yet ready to demote ace, Eric Stults, Kuroda will serve as the extra-man in their rotation upon his return.

Vlad Out in the Freeway Series?

Vladimir Guerrero, the top offensive star of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, may be sidelined for the Freeway Series with a stomach illness. The slugger left Tuesday's game with "flu-like symptoms," and has been consuming various medicines to combat the illness. Although the Dodgers would be fortunate to have him watching their upcoming series against the Angels rather than playing in it, I never wish misfortune upon any player.

Guerrero did not feel well enough to pinch-hit in yesterday's game against the Washington Nationals. Mike Scioscia said that the outfielder would be "good to go," for Friday's game against the Dodgers. Yet, there have been limited coverage on his progress and there is a possibility that he will sit out tomorrow's series-opener.

Recap: Dodgers Lose to End the Series

The Los Angeles Dodgers wrapped up their three-game series with the Chicago White Sox with a definitive loss earlier today. The White Sox held the Dodgers to only five hits during the entire game. However, both teams struggled offensively as the final score was only 2-0.

Clayton Kershaw was charged with the second loss of his career after surrendering two runs on six hits in four innings. Through four innings of work, the rookie tossed 69 pitches. Evidently, he needs to work on minimizing his pitch count and developing better control on his pitches.

Brian Falkborg made his 2008 debut for the Dodgers in today's game. He pitched one full inning, walking one batter. He needs to work on throwing strikes and not just waiting for batters to hit his pitches into play for an out.

The Dodgers look forward to an exciting Freeway Series with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim starting tomorrow night at 10:40 PM EST. Chan Ho Park is expected to be the starting-pitcher for the series-opener. Hopefully, the Dodgers will be more successful against the Angels than they were against the Chicago White Sox.

Recap: Stults Is the Star

Eric Stults stole the spotlight in last night's 5-0 victory over the Chicago White Sox. The 28-year-old hurler pitched his first complete game, allowing a total of only four hits. He also struck out three unlucky batters in his spectacular outing.

The youngster said, "When I was walking into the dugout after the eighth, I looked at the scoreboard and the pitch count. Joe shook my hand and said, `Good job,' and I went and sat down. And Russell was like, `You want to keep going?' I said yeah. So he went up to Joe, asked him if I could keep going. Joe looked at me and I was nodding my head yeah, so he said, `We'll take it one hitter at a time.' "Stults retired the side in order without any issues.

Blake DeWitt also had a significant impact on the outcome of the game. The rookie connected on a double in the bottom of the fourth-inning, sending James Loney and Matt Kemp home. These were his first RBI's since May 31.