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Saturday, August 14, 2004

And So It Goes

We lost against their best pitcher. I warned that this was possible. We're not going to face Zambrano, or Clement, so if we win against Prior tomorrow, we're still not getting the true face of the Cubs. The only thing I can take away from this game was that Baker overpitched Wood, and we sent up our worst starter, Ishitty, and he pitched pretty damn well, for Ishitty at least.

And one other thing, does anyone know why Choi was benched against Wood? Is he hurt or something?

Friday, August 13, 2004

Wow, we beat the Cubs!

Our best starter against their worst, and even then it was close until their bullpen blew it. I'm not impressed. Maddux is still a decent pitcher, and Odalis has no stamina. The true test is going to be tomorrow, and the day after when we face first Wood then Prior. Prior actually seems to be worse than Maddux at this point, and is the most likely candidate to be moved to the bullpen if their team makes the playoffs. Later this weekend I want to do a write up on the pitching of the Braves, another team we are likely to face in the first round. Hold onto your panties!

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Musta Been Drinking...

I just realized, thanks to reader "Pablo", we can't face the Padres in the first round. Ignore every sentence with the word "Padres" in it. God I'm dumb.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Good Analysis

There's been some good analysis on the Dodger blogs recently. Check out John's Dodger Blog, as well as 6-4-2, on the links list, for an analysis of the playoff scheme. It's pretty goddamn exciting to be able to talk with confidence of the Dodgers going to the playoffs, so I'm writing right now with tears in my eyes. Hard to see the monitor, but I'll try.

Anyway, here's the deal. If the playoffs were to start today, we would play the Cubs, with home field advantage, and the Braves would play the Cardinals, with Cardinals home field advantage. Trends being what they are, the most likely teams we'll face in the first round will either be the Cubs, or the Padres.

Padres team ERA: 3.83
Dodgers team ERA: 3.80
Cubs team ERA: 3.76

Why the look at team ERA? If you've read Moneyball, the perception is that the playoffs are a crap shoot. DePodesta, in his trying to acquire Randy Johnson, and better pitching in general, has essentially admitted that you can do certain things to increase the odds in your favor. Having a pitcher that can pitch a lot of innings in the post season, is one. I can't find the quote, but DePo essentially said he was trading to take us deeper into the playoffs.

I don't know about Bochy, the Padres' manager, but I do know about Baker. He is a man who really models management after Lasorda. Take a promising young pitcher, Herschiser, Valenzuela, make him pitch 1000 innings, and every game in the post season, ruin the guy's career, BUT, win a world series with him.

The statistical approach, with emphasis on pitch count, and innings pitched, is one of caution. The Baker approach, is one that wins World Series.

The Cubs have three starters with ERAs under 3.50. Clement, Zambrano, and Wood. That means the Cubs are going to go with a three man rotation. Let's look at the K/9 innings for each of the three pitchers:

Clement: 9.26
Wood: 9.59
Zambrano: 8.30

Wood's is down from last year, and he's been injured this season. But those are exceptionally high. In a small sample size of the first round of the post season, having a high strikeout rate is what is needed. If our offense has an offweek, as offenses have all the time during the regular season, these strike out rates will tear us apart. Let's look at the Dodger K/9:

Penny: 7.01
Perez: 6.30
Alvarez: 7.46
Weaver: 6.63
Lima: 4.64

These are FAR worse than the Cubs. A lot of the Dodgers' success has come from playing in an extreme pitcher's park, and having the best fielding behind the pitching in the MLB. It's allowed for low ERAs, with low strikeouts. Of course a DIPS analysis, with defensive help removed, or one of the many Baseball Prospectus stats will show this as well, but my point is to use easier stats, for the majority of my audience that is mildly retarded.

Here's the Padres K/9 as well:

Wells: 3.95
Lawrence: 5.56
Peavy: 8.63
Eaton: 6.49

The Padres lineup is VERY similar to the Dodgers' lineup. Garbage throwers with a good defense and park to back them up. I think the reason they've been less successful than the Dodgers is because their offense is pretty terrible.

To conclude, I'm rooting for the Padres over the Cubs for the wildcard. The odds heavily favor the Cubs to win in a first round series against us. I can see the headlines now, of how the Moneyball method can get you to the playoffs, but not deep into them. It's somewhat true. The only way the Cubs are going to lose, is by luck being on our side, where the majority of our offense has a good series, and injury strikes again. If you think about it, the fact that injury has blown out Mark Prior, luck IS on our side. But the Cubs' rotation is still so dominant that they have three amazing pitchers who are just as much of a threat as Prior was. So if you're a betting man, I'd bet on the Cubs winning the pennant, and the Dodgers being eliminated first round.

Monday, August 09, 2004

Ok, we're not fucked

Penny is not hurt too badly after all. He was evidentally just being a pussy. Pitch through the pain, mofo. Nomo does it, and look at him. Actually, maybe you should take a seat and wait for it to heal.

Sunday, August 08, 2004

Ok, we're fucked

Some of you were asking how was the view of Penny blowing out his arm. What I saw was the dumbass Dodger trainer, tell Penny, "throw another pitch and tell me if it hurts". Whenever a coach tells you to "walk it off", or "throw another pitch", DON'T DO IT. If you do, that will tear what's left of your muscle. Trainers are not doctors, they are assholes pretending to be doctors. People who pretend to be doctors are typically losers, ALWAYS insane. Ask Lori Hacking about men who pretend to be doctors. When you don't know shit about medicine and you give people advice on the basis of reruns of Quincy MD, and Medicine Woman, you are going to fuck someone UP!!!

So the game was an absolute cluster fuck, and it was really hot as hell. No one noticed my Negro League jersey, so LA sports fans can drop dead, and I've noticed there's an unwritten rule that the best stores and foods are on the field level, for the season ticket holders to access, while the rest of us animals in the stadium get to chew on hard Dodger Dogs. Thanks McCourt. In Boston, where I went to college, it's standard operating procedure to have a class system, I was a fool to think that LA didn't have one as well. McCourt has taken advantage of it by giving the poor people shoddier menus.

Right now we need Jackson to get healthy, or the D-Backs to put Johnson on waivers. The latter might actually occur. Then we gotta grab the lanky mofo. Even if Nomo, Jackson, and Johnson never make the rotation, I think we can limp to the playoffs on Perez, Weaver, Lima, and Ishitty, plus a little magic from fatso Alvarez. Alvarez pitched relief today, God knows why, and so now the rotation is screwed. Tracy is usually a decent wizard with the rotation, but I guess he figured, what the hell, we have a day off tomorrow, let's blow out everyone's arm. I can see where's he coming from. Man, I'm beginning to think the Dodgers are cursed. Curse of the Italian catcher!
I Shall Attend

Today I go to a ballgame. I will be wearing a Negro League jersey, either of the Elite Giants, or of the Homestead Grays, I haven't decided yet, and I will be sitting reserve. So if you see a beautiful young man, watching the game, wearing such attire, if you come up to me, I'll throw you over the goddamn railing. Leave me alone, I'm scoring the game.

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