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Saturday, February 11, 2017

Dodgers agree to bring back Chase Utley | MLB.com

The Dodgers continued a flurry of late free-agent additions Friday night by agreeing to a one-year contract with veteran Chase Utley. Earlier in the day, they agreed to a deal with outfielder Franklin Gutierrez on the heels of an agreement for reliever Sergio Romo.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 11, 2017 at 03:40 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: chase utley, dodgers, free agents

Kershaw, Koufax, and the Fallacy of Orthodoxy

Part of the Koufax orthodoxy, of course, is his legend: Retired at 30, at the height of his game, the height of his fame. And then, gone. He never hawked a book, lent his name, or became an autograph factory. Never sat in the booth, or grabbed a mike. Never a hint of scandal, a suggestion of bad behavior. He’d make his Spring Training visits to the Mets or the Dodgers, to see old friends and talk to the kids, and the press covered these casual afternoons like matters of state. Then he’d disappear again, go back to his life. Fifty years of repose; fifty years of grace; fifty years of dignity. Five decades, essentially, of silence. Baseball’s Garbo.

——-

For a team with such a long and storied tenure (the Dodgers can trace their lineage to 1884, when they were founded in the shadows of Brooklyn shipyards as the Atlantics), you’d think the competition for “Best Ever” would be varied and fierce. But it’s not. Not really.

gehrig97 Posted: February 11, 2017 at 10:04 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: clayton kershaw, dazzy vance, dodgers, don drysdale, don sutton, sandy koufax

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Want to own a share of the Dodgers? This could be your chance - LA Times

Time to break open those piggy banks.

The Dodgers’ owners are interested in selling a small share of the team and have retained an investment banker to solicit bids.

There is no timetable for a possible sale, said the banker, Sal Galatioto. He added that Mark Walter would remain the Dodgers’ controlling owner, with his partners from Guggenheim Baseball Management.

Galatioto also represented the owners of the Chicago Cubs last year, when they sold minority shares for a total of about $300 million. That deal is believed to have valued the Cubs and related assets in excess of the $2.15 billion Walter and his partners paid in 2012 to buy the Dodgers, their stadium and half-ownership of the stadium parking lot.

Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly said later that year that he believed the franchise value had reached $3 billion.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 09, 2017 at 08:41 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Fadeaway: Episode 7: The Big Drabowski

This is a few months old, published around the World Series, but still a good listen. The latest from Primate Eric Enders’  baseball history podcast.

Born in Ozanna, Poland, at the start of the Third Reich, Moe Drabowsky escaped from Hitler and came to America as a toddler. He embraced life in America, becoming first the hardest-throwing young prospect in baseball, then its most notorious prankster. And in 1966, after arm injuries had caused everyone to write him off for good, he resurrected his career and authored the most spectacular relief pitching performance in World Series history.

Also features some comments from Gene Larkin about this moment.


Friday, January 27, 2017

Dodgers pitcher Rich Hill goes by no-failure, no-progress credo - LA Times

“In a way, I’m a role model for failure,” Hill said. “My first suggestion for 2017 is to go out and fail — but fail at something you have passion for. I’m standing here today because I’ve failed more often than I’ve succeeded.

“Without struggle, there is no progress. Without failure there is no progress.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 27, 2017 at 03:17 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, rich hill

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

FanGraphs: No ordinary Joe

For those not keeping up with Fat Joe’s career post-Terror Squad, he has reinvented himself as the master of the slider and death to all RHB.

Blanton was effective in the Royals’ bullpen, and when he was traded to the Pirates at the trade deadline, he was again successful in a relief role. During the following offseason, he signed a modest one-year, $4 million deal with the Dodgers and was, again, successful pitching out of the bullpen.

Since 2015, Blanton has appeared in 107 games, all as a reliever. In that time he ranks 11th in ERA (2.29) among all relievers, 24th in FIP (3.02) and 26th in K-BB% (19.1 points).

So what’s strange — in an era during which we hear more interest and talk about teams relying more heavily on their bullpens, when we saw inspired bullpen usage by the Cleveland Indians and other clubs in the postseason — what’s strange is Blanton remains available in free agency.


Just a Few Words About Jake Daubert

The forgotten MVP, few players were easier to root for than Jake Daubert.

gehrig97 Posted: January 25, 2017 at 11:41 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, history, jake daubert, most valuable player

Dodgers left-hander Ryu Hyun-jin claims to be pain-free, ready for new season

“Right now, I’d say I am in better shape than I normally would be at the start of spring training,” Ryu told reporters at Incheon International Airport. “I threw four bullpen sessions a day while training in Japan. I have no pain at the moment.”

Ryu, who made his big league debut in 2013, missed the entire 2015 season after a shoulder surgery in May that year. He returned to action on July 7 last year against the San Diego Padres but was touched for six earned runs on eight hits in 4 2/3 innings. That would be the only start he’d make in 2016, as lingering pain sidelined him again.

Ryu then underwent a left elbow debridement procedure in September, with hopes of joining the Dodgers’ spring training at 100 percent.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 25, 2017 at 06:52 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, ryu hyun-jin

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Dodgers’ Decision To Be Intentionally Inefficient | FanGraphs Baseball

One of the best things about baseball is we’ll eventually find out the answer.

De Leon could make this deal a disaster from LA’s perspective, but if Forsythe provides enough short-term value that they can get past the Cubs in either of the next two years, they’ll comfort themselves with the warmth of a World Series appearance, and maybe a big shiny trophy. Deals that require postseason success to work out are the worst kinds of trades to make, but the best kind of trades to have to make. The Dodgers have already built a winner; with this kind of trade, they’re trying to build a champion.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 24, 2017 at 06:39 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, rays

Monday, January 16, 2017

Bearing the Glory: Jackie Robinson’s 1949 MVP Award

After twenty years of singular focus and desire, twenty years of getting knocked down and picking yourself up, twenty years of eating ####, twenty years of crawling over broken glass, twenty years of getting on a crowded bus to brave that goddamned commute, twenty years of bearing it, you are finally and publicly acknowledged as the very best in your chosen profession.

You’ve MADE it. You’ve reached the goal you’ve been chasing every day for the last twenty years. It should be the very best day of your professional life.

And all you’re thinking about, because of the way you’ve been treated along the way, all you’re thinking about is getting out. Leaving it behind. All you’re thinking is “I can’t take it anymore. This is going to kill me.”

Imagine having the best day of your life taken from you like that.

gehrig97 Posted: January 16, 2017 at 01:13 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: branch rickey, dodgers, integration, jackie robinson, racism

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Twins haggling with Dodgers over potential Brian Dozier trade | FOX Sports

The never-ending trade discussion.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 10, 2017 at 06:38 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: brian dozier, dodgers, notes, twins

Monday, January 09, 2017


Monday, December 26, 2016

Does Ryan Braun Still Make Sense For The Dodgers?

I wouldn’t do it.

All other things being equal, the Dodgers would be well-served to step up their pursuit of Braun, but all other things aren’t equal. Braun just turned in his best season since 2012, but he is at a stage in his career when decline can begin at any time. He would cost the Dodgers $19 million in salary in 2017, but even if he were to regress from being a 3.2-win player (using fWAR) to the 2.9-win level he established in 2015, he should make that investment pay off. After that, though, Braun will still be owed $57 million over his age 34-to-36 seasons. With each passing year, it would become less likely that Braun would give the Dodgers a positive return.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 26, 2016 at 09:44 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, ryan braun

Friday, December 16, 2016

Dodgers prospect Willie Calhoun not short on confidence - The Orange County Register

Where does he end up playing?

Calhoun knows exactly what he needs to work on whether opportunity knocks this spring or later. The Dodgers’ fourth-round pick in the 2015 draft has always been defined by his bat. After hitting .316 with a .909 OPS at three levels in 2015, he hit .254 with 27 home runs, 88 RBI and a .788 OPS with Double-A Tulsa last year. But he wears the label of a hitter without a position.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 16, 2016 at 07:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, prospects, willie calhoun

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Why the luxury tax increase is tip money to the 2017 Dodgers - LA Times

Bill Shaikin takes a look at the Luxury Tax ramifications of the pending Dodgers deals.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2016 at 08:30 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Here’s why the future Dodgers are downright scary

One problem the Dodgers will have going forward is they won’t be able to outspend people on the international market. In the draft, they’ll be working with lower draft positions.

If I were them, I’d invest in backend people. Get the best scouts. Get the best development people. Outspend everybody on analytics. Pour your money into medicine and family care. Of course, from what I’ve read, they are already doing a pretty good job at all that, so I’m not sure if they’ll be able to press an advantage in those areas.

When Friedman and Zaidi joined the Dodgers in the offseason after 2014, they didn’t bring with them some sort of small-market juju. There was actual substance to their approach: go piecemeal for a short while until the development system in which they have invested as much as any team turns into a talent spigot that won’t stop. The problem with the bloated Yankees of the 2000s and into this decade wasn’t all their bad contracts. It was that the team developed next to no talent alongside it.

I’m a big fan of Bellinger after watching him last spring training. The other guys, we’ll see.

Alvarez, a 20-year-old Cuban for whom the Dodgers paid $32 million, could be one of the five best pitching prospects in baseball by this time next season. He throws an easy 100 from the right side. Bellinger, 21, is the most-asked-for player in trade talks and the heir apparent to Adrian Gonzalez at first base. Calhoun, 22, may take over at second if the Dodgers don’t acquire one this offseason. Verdugo more than held his own last season in Double-A as a 20-year-old. Diaz, another costly Cuban, should spend all season at Double-A as a 20-year-old this season. De Leon could crack the Dodgers’ rotation at some point in 2017. Barnes is the rare legitimate 27-year-old prospect. Buehler and Stewart and De Jong and Sborz and Oaks all will pitch in the big leagues sooner than later. And that’s just the start.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2016 at 07:10 AM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, prospects

Thursday, December 08, 2016

The Aroldis Chapman fallout will be even more interesting than the deal itself | FOX Sports

Five years and over $80 million for a reliever? No thank you.

It’s a bizarre baseball reality that the low-revenue Marlins could outbid the high-revenue Dodgers for a player whom the Dodgers signed out of Curacao in 2004, converted from a catcher to a pitcher and developed into an elite closer.

But don’t be surprised if it happens.

The Dodgers’ value-driven front office is not the type to pump $80 million into a pitcher who works 70 innings a season — particularly when the lack of state income tax in Florida, as opposed to the high state income tax in California, will make it that much more difficult for them to beat the Marlins’ offer.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 08, 2016 at 06:30 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: aroldis chapman, dodgers, free agents, kenley jansen, marlins, yankees

Monday, December 05, 2016

Dodgers sign free-agent pitcher Rich Hill | MLB.com

Three years, $48 million.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 05, 2016 at 01:24 PM | 66 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, free agency, rich hill

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-1-2016

Washington Times, December 1, 1916:

“I have decided not to sell my stock in the Brooklyn Club,” said President C.H. Ebbets today before leading for Atlantic City. “My health was poor last summer, and I did think seriously of retiring from baseball. I feel batter now and have changed my mind. I think I’ll stay in the game.

Ebbets held on to the team for the rest of his life, dying of a heart attack in April 1925. His successor, Ed McKeever, died of influenza eleven days later.

Needless to say, April 1925 was not a good month for the Dodgers.

Jefferson Manship (Dan Lee) Posted: December 01, 2016 at 10:20 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: charles ebbets, dodgers, dugout, history

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

No, the Dodgers aren’t sitting the offseason out because they’re broke - McCovey Chronicles

Grant Brisbee does a great job explaining why the Dodgers debt problem isn’t a payroll problem.

Even with a payroll closer to $200 million, the Dodgers are betting on more Coreys Seager, Julios Urias, and Jocs Pederson, low cost players with youth on their side and arbitration awards just out of reach. They’ll have to make a decision on Clayton Kershaw (if they let him write out the words and numbers on the check, for example), but they’ll have Adrian Gonzalez off the books. Same with Andre Ethier. And Hyun-jin Ryu. And Scott Kazmir. And Brandon McCarthy. And Matt Kemp and Hector Olivera and Erisbel Arruebarrena and Alex Guerrero and Carl Crawford.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 29, 2016 at 07:06 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Can the Pirates find a trade partner for Josh Harrison? | FOX Sports

Team president Stan Kasten, however, said that the Dodgers are not facing any payroll restrictions or any pressure from baseball.

“There is no mandate. There is no problem with our debt,” Kasten said. “We are continuing to operate on the same program we have since the day we walked in here in 2012. That’s building through our minor-league system while continuing to aggressively put the best team on the field that we can each year.”

Baseball issued a statement:

“The Commissioner’s Office works with all clubs to monitor compliance with the Debt Service Rule. Non-compliant clubs are asked to submit a plan demonstrating a path to compliance. Clubs are evaluated on an ongoing basis relative to that plan.

“The rule is intended to ensure the financial health of clubs relative to their ability to service their indebtedness, not to influence decisions on the player market. There are various ways to achieve compliance and there is no mandate to cut payroll.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 29, 2016 at 06:14 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, dodgers, notes, pirates, twins

Monday, November 28, 2016

MLB Hot Stove: Dodgers reportedly need to shed payroll this winter and here’s why - CBSSports.com

The debt rule is unlikely to have any impact on the team on the field—Los Angeles has been looking to trim player payroll for a few years now anyway—but going from $300 million in payroll to $200 million in the span of three years seems daunting. It shouldn’t be too difficult given the salaries the Dodgers have coming off the books the next few years though:

Gone after 2017: Carl Crawford ($21.857 million), Andre Ethier ($17.5 million salary plus $2.5 million buyout of 2018 option), Alex Guerrero ($7.5 million)

Gone after 2018: Adrian Gonzalez ($22.375 million), Scott Kazmir ($17.67 million), Brandon McCarthy ($11.5 million), Hyun-Jin Ryu ($7.83 million), Erisbel Arruebarrena ($6.5 million)
Also, Clayton Kershaw can opt out of his contract following the 2018 season. He’ll earn $33 million in both 2017 and 2018. Among all the players listed above, Kershaw is pretty much the only one the Dodgers will want to re-sign when the time comes.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 28, 2016 at 06:28 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Sunday, November 27, 2016

After $1 billion in player spending, Dodgers under MLB mandate to cut debt - LA Times

The Dodgers, who have spent more than a billion dollars on player payroll in the first four seasons of Guggenheim Baseball Management, face a mandate to reduce debt in order to conform to Major League Baseball rules.

The club is expected to reduce payroll for a second consecutive season, with the goal of cutting from about $300 million in 2015 to closer to $200 million in 2018.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 27, 2016 at 09:57 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, economics

Friday, November 25, 2016


Thursday, November 17, 2016

Listen to Vin Scully find out he’s a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient

You’d be hard-pressed to find a single person who’d have qualms with Scully’s honor … except for Scully, himself, of course.

When White House press secretary Josh Earnest called to tell Scully the news, the Dodgers’ legend responded:

“Are you sure? I’m just an old baseball announcer.”

eddieot Posted: November 17, 2016 at 11:51 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: barack obama, dodgers, vin scully

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