The Dodgers Ace Pitched Like one Today Shutting Down the Reds

Dodgers Battling Injury Bug Early in Camp

First it was, Dana Eveland’s hamstring (Eveland has since been reassigned), then Vicente Padilla and his forearm surgery, next a bout of the flu for Ted Lilly and Jay Gibbons, yesterday a bizarre incident where Dodger closer of the future Kenley Jansen slipped and fell during a drill, Marcus Thames has had a flareup of plantar fasciitis due to actually having to play in the field, Jamey Carroll was hit in the knuckle by a pitch as he tried to bunt today and now news that James Loney is awaiting results of an MRI done today on his sore knee.

All of this on the heels of Jerry Sands reaching base in 7 straight plate appearances prior to going 0-1 in today’s game. Dodger Nation may be seeing the promotion of their top hitting prospect out of necessity as opposed to common sense. Jay Gibbons went 0-2 today and is now 0-7 so far this spring with 2 KO’s. I realize it’s a small sample size but is there really any doubt of who the Dodgers should keep on the 25 man roster? The promising young versatile power hitter who reached base 7 straight times, or the former admitted sterioid user who was out of baseball for 2 years before the Dodgers got desperate and signed him late last season and is 0 for 7 and has yet to get on base this spring? You all know who Lasorda’s Lair wants to win this battle.

On a positive note Matt Kemp continued his hot spring doubling in a run in the 4th, Clayton Kershaw pitched 4 scoreless innings, without reaching his pitch limit, a great sign for him that he is keeping his pitch count down, and Dee Gordon singled, stole 2nd and scored on a Trent Oeltjen single as the Dodgers pulled out a 2-0 victory.

Dodger Notes

  • Judging by his hot start this spring and his work with Davey Lopes this offseason Matt Kemp appears primed to have a bounce back 2011 campaign. Jerry Crasnick has a great piece on him on ESPN I find it humorous that the reporters were miffed by Kemp because he delayed his promised interview to take extra BP in the morning and after the teams workout.
  • Then there is the following from Craig Calcaterra of NBC’s Hardball Talk , on Matt Kemp’s first AB of the spring it really is fascinating stuff: “The “Matt Kemp is lazy and out of shape”  theme got beat to death last year. Was there any truth to it? Sure, some. But it probably got overplayed because I’m not sure anyone is due as much garbage he got thrown on him in 2010. In light of all of that, I feel justified in relaying exactly one inning’s worth of Matt Kemp data as a means of trying to balance things out.Kemp led off the top of the second here at Tempe Diablo. He cracked a single up the middle. Then he stole second base. Then he advanced to third base on a grounder to short that a lot of guys would have held up on but on which Kemp had such a great jump that he would have beat the throw even if Erick Aybar had tried to make a play.  Then Kemp tagged, hauled ass and scored on a shallow fly to center by Russ Mitchell.The way I see it, that was three instances of hustle in one at bat, his first of spring training.  That’s not a lot of data, but maybe it’s time that we all pour our Matt Kemp Haterade down the drain.” I couldn’t agree more with Craig and it’s exciting to see Matty playing so hard, clearly he’s coming out of the gates in 2011 with something to prove.

The Dodgers square off tomorrow vs the Chicago Cubs and as always Lasorda’s Lair will be here for you with all the information Dodger Nation needs to know.

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Tags: Clayton Kershaw James Loney Jamey Carroll Jay Gibbons Jerry Sands Kenley Jansen Marcus Thames Matt Kemp Ted Lilly Vicente Padilla

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