Dodgers Thoughts: Time Off, 2017 & When Baseball Returns

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These days, we have more time on our hands than usual. I have been spending some of it watching old Dodgers games on TV, which recently there have been quite a few. Mostly they have centered around games played on Jackie Robinson Day, with Vin Scully narrating and the Dodgers winning. Even though it’s a minor substitute for what we’re currently missing, it does somewhat scratch the baseball itch.

I also have spent time listening to various Dodger themed podcasts. As previously mentioned, Ross Stripling and his buddy Cooper Surles have one that touches on a wide range of subjects, and players from other teams as well as the Dodgers and how they are dealing with this time in limbo. Broadcasters Joe Davis and Orel Hershiser have a brand new one called Off Air with Joe and Orel.

Today, they touched on the 2017 World Series, and how Orel really felt about all of it. He got quite emotional talking about how his whole life changed, for the better, because of the Dodgers winning in 1988. Barely a day goes by that he doesn’t reap some benefits from it. He muses that he wouldn’t have the job that he has now, if they had lost that series. One poignant line struck me—Orel thinks that if the Oakland Athletics had known what pitches were coming, he’d be known as the Chihuahua instead of the Bulldog.

In the same way that the outcome of the 2017 World Series changed so many people’s histories and legacies, so will this long break in baseball.

There is a huge push to at least get part of the season played, in whatever way that that could be achieved. The most popular one at the moment is basically keeping all players and coaches in one cordoned off area, like Arizona, and have them play against each other in ball parks with no fans. There are many issues that go along with this, of course, from players being away from their families for months at a time, to what happens if God forbid someone gets sick.

I don’t know how I feel about this. I would much rather have all the players safe and be able to play with fans in the stands. Still, I understand that this may not be possible for awhile, and that sports play a vital role in the recovery and overall attitude of the country.

What I do know, when baseball does come back, is that the Dodgers will be able to handle it better than most other teams. If the scenario is that it’s an abbreviated season, with seven inning games and double headers, who has more pitchers ready to start games than the Dodgers? They have eight starting pitchers on their staff. That would solve the ‘problem’ of where to start Dustin May, Stripling, and Tony Gonsolin. A quick tick through other teams’ starting rotations, and no one comes close to having eight starting pitchers that already have big game experience. More pitchers able to pitch five or six innings then reduces the need to overuse the bullpen. Not over using all of the arms then leads to fresher arms in the playoffs.

The Dodgers already had one of the deepest benches in all of baseball, and they have the best farm systems in all of baseball. Once again, should they need to call on more players if rosters expand for these games, the players coming up in Edwin Rios, who has big league experience, and could give Luke Raley and Zach McKinstry time to shine after their hot spring training showings.

If the Dodgers don’t end up playing until next spring, they still have one of the best major league rosters, even if they end up not being able to sign Mookie Betts. They are also set up for the long run to be one of the top teams for the foreseeable future. So, whenever baseball finally does return, the Dodgers will be able to finally avenge that 2017 season and get the players the rings they deserve.

 

12 thoughts on “Dodgers Thoughts: Time Off, 2017 & When Baseball Returns

  1. Other quandaries include should they resign 3 of their own free agents to be in Turner, Pederson, and Kike. Turner will be 37 I think when next season starts. Joc had the best year of his life, and lost his arbitration case. Kike has never been consistent, but he has been valuable. But I also think they played their hand a little because they gave Taylor a 2 year deal, and did not make that offer to Hernandez, leading me to believe that Kike’s star has lost some of it’s luster. They have a plethora of multi positional players on the roster, and in the minors. I think AF will make a concerted effort to retain Betts. He gave up a budding star to get him, and depriving the fans in LA of ever seeing Mookie, I think with him, all bets are off of the table. If anything, I believe AF will make him an offer of the highest contract ever given to a player in Dodger history. Then hang on, because Belli is going to want his too.

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  2. I think this is kike’s last year here, whether they play or not. I think they bring turner back, to play the same role as Utley, and Freese did, during their time with the Dodgers. Pederson, I’m not sure what they do with him, he is valuable against right handed pitching, but they did basically trade him to the Angels, so you question how valuable the front office sees him. I sure am curious, if we will ever hear who the Dodgers were getting the other part of that deal.

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    1. I tend to agree with all of that. Pederson was headed out of town, and to the Angels no less. The only player we knew for sure they were getting was Rengifo, and I thought that was not a great trade.

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    1. I do not think they were A listers. Everyone was thinking Adell, but they would have needed a lot more than Joc and Chicken Strip to pry him from the Angels. And I do not see why everyone was so high on Rengifo. I saw nothing special out of that guy. MLB.com has a list of the best nicknames on each team. Cey was the choice for LA as Penguin. I would have went with eye chart, a handle someone put on Billy Grabarkewitz. Brooklyn for me would have been Ol Skoonj. Carl Furillo’s nick name. There have been some good ones. Before they started calling Lou Gehrig the Iron Man, his handle was Biscuit Pants. Due to his rather large derriere. Oil Can Boyd, Stan the Man, the Sey hey Kid, Ol Pete Alexander, Scooter Rizzuto, Umpire Beans Reardon, the Donora Greyhound, Musial’s first nickname, Commerce Comet, Mickey Mantle, Poosh em up Tony Lazzeri, Babe Ruth had more than most, Babe, Sultan of Swat, the Great Bambino. Duke Snider, Hit em where they aint, Willie Keeler, Big Poison and Little Poison, the Waner Brothers, and one of my all time favorites, The Flying Dutchman…..Honus Wagner. Who looked nothing like he could fly. And finally, The Georgia Peach. Ty Cobb. Another player I would have loved to see play.

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  3. As bad as I want to see baseball this season, I don’t want to see one of the guys get sick because I couldn’t wait til next year.
    Just read in the Wall Street news blurps, a hospital in Chicago has used a drug called remdisivir, and had great success with severe cases. It’s a small sample size, hopefully they can figure out if this treatment will work, it would be a great relief to find a treatment, and save more people.

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    1. I want everyone to be healthy. I have been blessed so far because no one I know has had it. None of my family, or friends have been taken ill.

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  4. It has been over a month now since we saw any baseball action, and for some reason, it sure seems a lot longer. It has been long enough that I had forgotten where some players had signed. I still think some GM would be smart to sign Puig when the season does resume. He is going to be wanting to redeem himself after a mediocre 2019. Hope all are well. I am hanging in there. It snowed here again last night, so it is white everywhere.

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    1. Maybe it feels like longer than a month because it’s been 6 months since we’ve had any games that meant anything. It’s fun to watch the guys in ST but the games don’t count.
      You had snow last night and we’re expecting temps in the 80’s by mid next week here in the SF Valley.

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  5. How goes it today guys, not much baseball talk today, at least last week when they started talking about playing in Arizona, and Florida it gave us something to yak about.
    Jeff did you and your son get to go on your annual trip to spring training, before the virus outbreak?

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    1. Things started getting iffy just before our trip so I stayed at home. I’m in that age bracket where it pays to be safe. My son and some of the other regulars did go, but just as they got there MLB called a halt to the games, so they amused themselves for 3 days and came home.
      My son-in-law was planning to bring my 7 year old grandson for his first Az trip but decided at the last minute to stay at home also. Hopefully next year we can do our annual thing. I miss having gone this year but it’s a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things.

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