Great point by Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness “Dodgers Injuries Outnumber Runs,” tonight. Yeesh. Prior to the game it was news that Jon Garland would be headed back to the DL for the second time this season with shoulder inflammation. If you’re keeping score at home that’s the 17th DL trip for 13 different Dodger players this year.
Then when Dodger fans think it can’t get any worse, Rafael Furcal, less than two weeks removed from being activated from the DL left tonight’s game with an apparent side injury. Seriously Raffy we can’t even get two weeks out of you? Post-game comments are not good and Furcal is expected to be out for “awhile.” On the bright side the Garland injury means Rubby De La Rosa will most likely make his first career start Tuesday against the Phillies. Welcome to the show Rubby.
Will the Dodgers projected opening day lineup ever appear on the field together at the same time this year even once? Vicente Padilla and Juan Uribe are both close to returning which will help, but really at this rate, with the overall talent on this club, does anyone expect the Dodgers to finish better than third place?
Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier were 4-for-6 tonight at the plate, the rest of the Dodgers were 2-for-29. It really has become a two man show, if Kemp and Ethier don’t have guys on base in front of them, the Dodgers don’t score. It’s not like they were facing Ubaldo Jimenez, who shut them out Wednesday night on four hits.
Bronson Arroyo hadn’t won since April 25th and had allowed 19 earned runs in his last three starts which lasted just over 12 innings. Really guys? As optimistic as I want to be about the Dodgers, it’s really getting hard. They go through a three game streak where they score 23 runs, then the bats go completely silent. Is it too much to ask just to score three or four runs a night, I guess it is.
And with the Dodgers trailing by one run heading into the 9th tonight the trio of Loney, Navarro, and Miles really didn’t inspire any hopes of a comeback did it? Oh and had the Dodgers wanted to go to the bench for a pinch hitter they could have turned to Juan Castro or Tony Gwynn. Two fabulous defenders who unfortunately can’t hit a lick.
Even more troubling is Marcus Thames is scheduled to return off of the DL soon. That means one of three current outfielders must be sent down to AAA to make room, either Jay Gibbons, Jerry Sands or Tony Gwynn Jr. Sands is the future, he has looked like he’s starting to figure things out lately. He has one of the best on base percentages on the team, unfortunately he also has options left, meaning it will likely be bye bye Jerry so we Dodger fans can watch a team, who will very likely be out of contention, give at-bats to Jay Gibbons and Marcus Thames.
And you wonder why Dodger fans are upset and are staying away from Dodger games at an alarming rate. I don’t blame them, why spend hard earned cash to watch an admitted steroid user, who’s best years are clearly behind him play, while your prized prospect who is the future of your team sits on the bench, like he did tonight, or is in AAA. It’s an insult to the fans if this scenario comes to fruition. There is no reason to not let Sands learn on the job every day and get better right now, especially if the Dodgers are out of contention. He and the Dodgers will be that much better off next year if they do. Instead we’ll likely get to see two guys who probably wont even be on the team next year play.
I will reserve judgement until it happens, but if/when it does I plan on going on a rant that would make Bobby Knight proud. About the best thing to come from tonight’s game was watching Scott Elbert come in and face the reigning MVP, Joey Votto, and the reigning player of the month of May, Jay Bruce. Elbert who is suddenly pitching with the confidence to match the quality of his stuff, struck out Votto on three pitches and two pitches later got Bruce to pop out.
On a night when there wasn’t much to cheer about the Dodgers, at least it looks like we have a healthy power lefty arm in the bullpen, of course I probably just jinxed him and he goes on the DL tomorrow.
I’d like to end this with a heartfelt shout out to my new Nephew Logan Andrew Taracena, who entered the world three weeks early on June 1st, weighing in at 6.3 lbs and 19 inches. Both mommy and baby are doing well and for my Brother-in-law Mark you have no idea how wonderfully little Logan is going to turn your world upside down.