Bills has one hell of a beard-Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

Bills, His Beard, And The Dodgers Face An Old Friend-Trade Update

Dodgers Lineup vs. Marlins

Victorino 7
M.Ellis 4
Kemp 8
Ethier 9
Ramirez 6
Cruz 5
Rivera 3
Ellis 2
Billingsley 1


Nathan Eovaldi-4-8 vs. Chad Billingsley-10-9

*Update-Of course right after I write my pregame and say there is a better chance of me dating Megan Fox then the Dodgers acquiring Adrian Gonzalez, the news breaks of a huge trade in the works between the Dodgers and the Red Sox. Boston is having a bad year and are looking to dumb salary. The two teams are discussing a blockbuster trade which would send Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, and Nick Punto to the Dodgers. Crawford and Punto have already cleared waivers and can be moved without issue. Beckett must approve a trade, as a ten and five right s guy, and Gonzalez can’t block a trade to the Dodgers. Gonzalez is unfder contract through 2018 under a seven year 154 million dollar deal. Carl Crawford underwent Tmmy John surgery on his left elbow last week, and is out for the rest of the year. I am not sure why he is included in the trade since he is hurt, but I am assuming the red Sox just want to dump his salary. Crawford is signed through 2017 on a seven year 142 million dollar contract. Beckett is singed through 2014 and is having a poor year with an ERA of 5.23 and a 5-11 record. Nick Punto is a utility infielder and under contract through 2013. This is like Christmas in August Dodger fans. The players involved in the discussions are Rubby De La Rosa, Zach Lee, Jerry Sands, and Allen Webster. We will keep you posted as this story develops. I still would like to think I’m dating Megan Fox anyways, but in my head!*

*Upadte of Update! More news coming in guys. We jsut learned that the Dodgers have optioned Rubby De La Rosa back to AA, and have called up outfielder Alex Castellanos. This is good actually, since the Dodgers have been playing with a short bench for a while now. We also learned accorindg to Bill Shakin’s tweet that the Blue Jays claimed De La Rosa, which explains why he was optioned back down to AA. That way the Dodgers can keep him there until they trade him, if they choose to. We’ll have more on this breaking story as it develops guys. Hold onto your hats!*

*Updatepalooza!- James Loney has been scratched from the starting lineup tonight. Juan Rivera stars at first base. Adrian Gonzalez has also been scratched from the Red Sox lineup as well, according to various sources. A deal appears imminent. Stay tuned guys.

This season feels like it is slowly slipping away. The Dodgers are now three games behind the Giants in the NL West race, and a game and a half behind the second wild card spot. After being swept by the Giants, the Dodgers are now 6-12 at home since the all-star break, and have won only one series at Chavez Ravine since the break. Poor hitting, no power, and injuries continue to hurt the team as it has been for the last few years. The Dodgers just are not playing with any kind of fire or passion, and to tell you the truth, I am beginning to lose confidence that they will make the playoffs at all.

Injury after injury continue to plague the team like locusts. I’ve never seen a team with so many injuries. Jerry Hairston, (one of my favorite Dodgers) is not coming back this year. His hip injury has gotten worse, and he is going to need surgery. As will middle reliever Blake Hawksworth. He hasn’t pitched at all this year, and won’t be anytime soon. His arthroscopic shoulder surgery will keep him out until 2013 at the earliest. Then there is Andre Ethier. The right fielder has a huge blister on the palm of his hand, and had to have the training staff make him a makeshift cushion to wrap around his hand while he is batting. Perhaps that could explain his recent 1 for 22 slump? But as Eric Stephen of Truebluela notes Ethier has become the first Dodger ever with six straight seasons of 30 or more doubles. Congratulations Dre!

What most concerns me is the team is playing with no fire at all, and the players look downtrodden. It’s almost as if they have given up already, and manager Don Mattingly’s constant spin doctoring isn’t helping. The team is playing pathetically, but listen to the word play he uses. Mattingly had this to say after the Dodgers 8-4 loss to the Giants on Wednesday night.

“It was a surprising series for me, really,” Mattingly said. As Alex Angert of notes.  “I felt like coming off the road we’d play well. Not that we played badly; we just didn’t do enough to win.”

Oh god, just shut up Donnie. Seriously shut up. Give me a break. Not that we played badly?! Absurd! The Dodgers have won one series at home since the all-star break, and only two since mid June. What a load of Bollocks. (that’s bullcrap in British slang). Own up to the losing Donnie. When I hear Mattingly say things like this, it really makes me wonder about him. The Dodgers will try and turn things around tonight against the Miami Marlins who come into town for a weekend series. This will be the final time the Dodgers will play the Marlins this year. If you remember the Dodgers took two of three in Miami earlier this month.

This game is going to be interesting as the Dodgers will be going up against an old friend. Former Dodger Nathan Eovaldi will take the mound for the Fish. Young Nathan was traded to the Marlins in the Hanley Ramirez trade. Since joining the Fish, Eovaldi has performed well, going 3-2 with a 3.75 ERA. He’s allowed ten runs in 24 innings, and whiffed 13 and walked 16. He was only able to win one with the Dodgers, because the punch-less offense could never muster up any runs for him, but what else is new. It will be strange seeing Eovaldi in a Miami uniform. Bizarre isn’t it? Overall Eovaldi is 4-8 with a 4.03 ERA. In Nathan’s last start he beat Colorado, but walked four in 6.2 innings of work. The young right hander will need to work on limiting his walks.

I've kind of missed Eovaldi's frowny face when he pitches-Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE

The Dodgers will counter with righty Chad Billingsley. The Dodgers flipped around their rotation a bit. Moving Clayton Kershaw to tomorrow, and Aaron Harang will start the Sunday game.

Bills has been pitching fantastic for weeks now. He has won six in a row, only allowing six runs in 41.2 innings pitched. His ERA over that time is 1.30. In his last start Bills shutout the Braves to win his tenth game of the season. In his career against the Fish, Bills is 4-0 with a 2.31 ERA, and 48 whiffs. This current group of Marlins haven’t had many at-bats against him, but have managed to put up some hits. The Fish collectively are hitting .283 (15 for 53), against Bills with one home run, and a .758 OPS. Austin Kearns is 3 for 7. Jose Reyes has struggled hitting Bills, going 1 for 9. However the one hitter Bills will have to worry about is Carlos Lee. The guy who refused to be traded to the Dodgers because he didn’t like the taxes out in California, is batting .292 (7 for 24) with a double, a home run, and six RBI. Hopefully Bills beats him down like a tax audit. Bills is slowly but surely morphing back into the solid number two guy behind Kershaw that we need him to be. Since his winning streak began he has not shaved his beard. Any Dodger fan now realizes that his win streak is directly related to the size of his beard. I love it when players do this during a winning streak. Just look at his beard! It’s magnificent. Overall with the Dodgers he is 10-9 with a 3.44 ERA, 127 whiffs, and 42 walks Those are very solid numbers indeed. We hope his beard will remain intact once the game is finished.

I am sure you have heard by now that the Dodgers have been awarded the claim on Adrian Gonzalez. Of course this means nothing. Remember when we put in a claim on Cliff Lee? I have noticed many Dodger fans getting excited on twitter about this, and I don’t want any of them to be let down again. Many teams put players on waivers during this time, but it doesn’t mean they will move them. The Dodgers would have to blow away the Red Sox with a trade in order to get AG. It’s not going to happen. I don’t even want to write about it because the chances of it happening are so slim, it’s almost pointless even discussing it. I’m sorry but If you really believe the Dodgers are going to actually get Adrian Gonzalez, then I am 6’5, and having a month long love affair with Megan Fox. Gonzalez can’t block a trade to the Dodgers, and is under contract through at least 2018.

Join us after the game for a detailed postgame recap and our nightly analysis. First pitch is at 7:10PM, and televised on Prime Ticket. Time is slowly running out on this season, tick tock tick tock. Hopefully the Dodgers used the day off yesterday to regroup and recharge. This proves it’s not how you start that matters, but how you finish. If the Dodgers float through the last month of the season like schmucks, then I may have to take my Don Mattingly bobblehead, and run it over with my car. Go Blue.

Tags: A.J. Ellis Andre Ethier Chad Billingsley Don Mattingly Hanley Ramirez James Loney Juan Rivera Los Angeles Dodgers Luis Cruz Mark Ellis Matt Kemp Shane Victorino

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