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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Dodgers Newsbeat

Sunday, November 22, 2015

LA Times: Dave Roberts new Dodger manager

Dave Roberts is expected to be named manager of the Dodgers on Monday, according to multiple people familiar with the situation who spoke under the condition of anonymity because the hiring hasn’t been officially announced….Like Mattingly before him, the new manager probably will receive guidance from the front office on everything from lineup to bullpen decisions.

Many of the problems Mattingly encountered also remain, including expectations of a World Series championship. Only now, the team might not have the same resources that existed when Mattingly managed it.

he could use hisself as a pinch-runner, I suppose

Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: November 22, 2015 at 08:37 PM | 96 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Dodgers reportedly add Cuban prospects Yusniel Diaz, Omar Estevez

The Dodgers have reportedly landed a pair of Cuban teenagers, with a $15.5 million deal for outfielder Yusniel Diaz and $6 million for infielder Omar Estevez, per Jesse Sanchez of

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: November 22, 2015 at 07:20 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: cuba, dodgers

Friday, November 20, 2015

Andy Van Slyke says Kershaw wants Yasiel Puig traded from Dodgers

Former big-leaguer Andy Van Slyke, who’s also the father of Dodgers outfielder Scott Van Slyke, on Thursday talked to host Frank Cusumano on CBS Sports Radio 920 in St. Louis. On the subject of his son’s Dodger teammate Yasiel Puig, here’s what the elder Van Slyke had to say:

“This is just between you and I. When the best player—the highest paid player on the Los Angeles Dodgers—goes to the GM and ... is asked what are [the needs of the Los Angeles Dodgers], this particular highest-paid player said, ‘The first thing you need to do is get rid of Puig.’ That’s all you need to know.”
The highest-paid player on the Dodgers would be Clayton Kershaw, who checks in with a 2015 salary of $32.571 million and a 2016 salary of $34.571 million. Van Slyke wouldn’t mention Kershaw by name, but the implication is clear.

I hope that radio station with thousands of listeners doesn’t tell anyone!

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 20, 2015 at 10:53 AM | 30 comment(s)
  Beats: andy van slyke, clayton kershaw, dodgers, yasiel puig

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Dodgers want Yasiel Puig to lose weight - LA Times

Lose weight, fix your swing, and get a haircut!!

Jim Furtado Posted: November 10, 2015 at 06:29 AM | 73 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, yasiel puig

Saturday, November 07, 2015


To copy the Royals, the Dodgers and the Yankees would have to strip their payrolls and start over. The Yankees would also have to jettison their vastly overrated general manager, Brian Cashman, and find a general manager more adept at putting a roster together and not do it by throwing the Yankees’ millions at free agents.


bobm Posted: November 07, 2015 at 08:32 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: dayton moore, dodgers, rays, royals, yankees

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Dodgers, with proud history of diversity, could pick Dave Roberts as manager | FOX Sports

A team should hire the best candidate. The Dodgers have an established track record of doing that. So, if Roberts is the best candidate, they will hire him; if he isn’t, they won’t. And that should be that.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2015 at 06:50 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: dave roberts, dodgers

In final analysis, the best choice as Dodgers manager would be ... Dave Roberts - LA Times

Bill Plaschke likes Dave Roberts. He really likes him!

Jim Furtado Posted: November 04, 2015 at 06:38 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dave roberts, dodgers, manager

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Chase Utley is coming back — if he can find a team | New York Post

Who are his best options?

Now, Utley’s case could impact if he misses two games next regular season. The Dodgers will decline his $15 million 2016 option, making Utley a free agent. However, he turns 37 in December and is coming off his worst season in which he hit .212 for the Phillies and Dodgers with just a .629 OPS.

The Dodgers could conceivably want him back at decreased pay, but as opposed to what would have been in his prime, Utley will not have a robust market.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 28, 2015 at 06:10 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: chase utley, dodgers, phillies

Sunday, October 25, 2015

NY Magazine: California Congressman Forced to Despairingly Sing ‘Meet the Mets’ on House Floor

On Friday morning, representative and Los Angeles Dodgers fan Adam Schiff entered the House chambers wearing a Mets tie.

He and New York representative Steve Israel had made a bet about baseball playoffs earlier this month — if the Dodgers won, Israel would have to wear a Dodgers tie and give his colleague bagels. If the Mets won, Schiff would have to give Israel gourmet popcorn and also have to make an undesirable sartorial choice.


bobm Posted: October 25, 2015 at 10:45 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: congress, dodgers, mets

Inside Baseball: Ins and outs of Mattingly’s exit; plus more MLB notes -

As always some good tidbits from Heyman. I love this one.

As was mentioned in this space a week ago, the former outfielder/former broadcaster Gabe Kapler is beloved by the Dodgers brass as future saber star. (Kapler was put in charge of Dodgers spring nutrition for obvious reasons – he looks like a bodybuilder – and he is said to have taken a sabermetrician’s bent to even that; he was caught counting fruit in spring training.)

See, sabermetricians are counters. How can a seemingly smart fella still not get it?

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2015 at 08:31 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, notes

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Dodgers looking for a manager open to collaboration — like Gabe Kapler? - LA Times

Several hours after the Dodgers confirmed Don Mattingly wouldn’t return to their dugout next season, Gabe Kapler was asked if he was ready to take over as the team’s manager.

“I have to go work out,” Kapler said.

He smiled, politely declined to comment further and slipped into an elevator.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 24, 2015 at 02:02 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, gabe kapler, managers

Friday, October 23, 2015

Shaikin: Don Mattingly makes a decision, and Dodgers’ Andrew Friedman gets to make his choice

There are Dodger fans clamoring for Scioscia?

In Los Angeles, ownership deflected the decision on Don Mattingly to Andrew Friedman. There was talk of Mattingly staying another year, maybe more, but not for the kind of tenure that would make the manager feel he was Friedman’s guy. So Mattingly took it upon himself to make the decision. He left. He ought to be better off for it, and so too the Dodgers, without the constant backdrop of when Friedman might bring in his own guy.

Friedman should have done that a year ago, when the Dodgers’ owners hired him as president of baseball operations, but the owners still had Mattingly’s back. By the end of this season, Friedman should have known Mattingly well enough to hand him a pink slip or a contract extension, not engage him in hours of discussions about the who, what, when, and why of future decision-making at Dodger Stadium.

No one would have begrudged Friedman the chance to say, “We’re going in another direction.” Mattingly understands how the game is played. He thought he would succeed Joe Torre as manager of the New York Yankees in 2007, but the Yankees went in another direction and hired Joe Girardi. ...

This is not about the Dodgers losing Game 5 of the National League division series; an analytically inclined front office knows better than to make a decision based on one game out of 167. This is not about a sabermetric front office against an old-school manager; Mattingly bent over backward to embrace the torrent of data flowing from the front office to the clubhouse, and the considerable input from the humans in the executive suites.

“I think it’s great, honestly,” Mattingly said. “I think the information is really good. Do I agree 1,000% with everything that comes through it? Probably not. That has nothing to do with loving information.”

Those Dodgers fans clamoring for the return of a prodigal son — Scioscia or Dusty Baker — should be reminded that a manager’s job has changed these days, and not only at Dodger Stadium. Experience as a manager is an asset, not a requirement.

Today’s manager is more of a middle manager, a politician within the organization and a corporate spokesman representing the organization, a front man for the team at a time the balance of power has shifted from the dugout to the front office.



JE (Jason) Posted: October 23, 2015 at 09:56 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew friedman, dodgers, don mattingly, manager

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Sources: Mattingly, Dodgers part ways -

No shock here.

Don Mattingly and the Dodgers will part ways, sources tell CBS Sports.

The decision is being described as mutual.

Dodgers higherups like Mattingly very much, but it was apparent there wasn’t support for the long-term. Word is Mattingly felt he was treated very well by baseball president Andrew Friedman and others, but the sides ultimately decided it was better to move on.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2015 at 09:53 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, managers

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Nick Cafardo | Sunday Baseball Notes: Who can generate power for the Red Sox? - The Boston Globe

This is a curious Dodgers move.

The biggest head-scratcher was firing two advance scouts (Gary Pellant and Willie Fraser) right before the season ended. The staff was blindsided by this, and it didn’t help in the postseason when other teams had small armies evaluating teams.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2015 at 11:15 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, notes, red sox

$310M Dodgers go bust: What’s the future for these 3 big names? | New York Post

Why don’t the Dodgers just trade Mattingly to the Marlins. Win, win.

Mattingly clearly has grown annoyed about job status questions — it is not as if his resume is littered with last-place finishes. Jon Heyman of has reported that if let go by the Dodgers, Mattingly would become a frontrunner to be the Marlins’ manager as their owner Jeffrey Loria continues to adore anything that has a Yankees background.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2015 at 09:06 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Heyman Baseball Insider: Mattingly deserves to stay in LA, but will he? Plus MLB notes

JH ♡ DM.

Mattingly, it is said, has been quite cooperative on the lineup input he receives from above, and word is, it’s substantial. The club is blessed with terrific positional depth at full strength, giving them options galore, though Mattingly doesn’t always make the call. (That might explain why he answers questions about lineup decisions with “We thought it gave us the best chance to win.”

Under normal circumstances, Mattingly should easily be safe. But he also knows his job comes with no guarantees, and the one year to go on his three-year contract brings no certainties, either (if anyone’s shown they’re wiling to eat money, it’s the Dodgers).

Dodgers people haven’t said much, if anything, about his situation, and they may just keep him after weighing all these factors. But if they aren’t sure he’s their guy long-term, it’s possible they could allow him to talk to other interested teams, and there is at least one that’s interested, maybe more. ...

In the event of the Dodgers move on—and it’s hard to say how likely that is—the new regime could look close to home. First year director of player development Gabe Kapler is one who’s been speculated on by the Los Angeles press, and he makes some sense. And the new regime does love Kapler, a very smart man who has a sabremetric bent. But that’s just a guess.

Mattingly is a big boy. Even with the consistently strong regular seasons, he’d probably understand if the Dodgers made a change, at least to a degree. And at this point, he himself probably wouldn’t be shocked.

But that doesn’t mean it would be the right things to do. And it wouldn’t be.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 17, 2015 at 02:17 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, jon heyman, manager, managerial openings, marlins, nationals

Friday, October 16, 2015

Los Angeles Dodgers Don Mattingly can’t take all the | FOX Sports

I can’t see how Mattingly survives.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2015 at 10:43 AM | 59 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Plaschke: Large payroll isn’t enough to get Dodgers further in postseason

Plaschke is up to his “old-fashioned” tricks, this time pretending never to have heard of Ted Williams.

For $300 million, you would also think the Dodgers would always be covering third base — there’s only four bases to watch, right? — yet in the fourth inning they inexplicably left it open after Zack Greinke walked Lucas Duda with the infield shifted to right. Daniel Murphy, who had earlier singled and jogged to second on the walk, saw the free base and sprinted to it. Moments later, Murphy scored the game-tying run on Travis d’Arnaud’s deep foul fly ball, a 2-all tie that remained until Murphy won the game with a home run into the right-field seats in the sixth.

Mattingly blamed the naked base caper on rookie Corey Seager, but, in a broader sense, the blame will be felt by new Dodgers baseball boss Andrew Friedman. This was a case of old-fashioned hustle beating the sort of new-age baseball shift that has been implemented here by the Friedman regime. It is a shift that has sometimes succeeded but still requires more work, especially on a team with a rookie shortstop.

“We should all be kind of ... communicating, ‘Get to third, get to third,’” said Mattingly after this expensive team was once again felled by 10-cent fundamentals.

Finally, for $300 million, you wouldn’t think the Dodgers players and their manager would engage in a shouting match in the middle of their most important moment.

The enduring image of Thursday’s loss will probably be Andre Ethier waving off Mattingly and screaming, “Shut up and manage!” after Mattingly had tried to calm him down after Ethier flied out with a runner on second in the third.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 16, 2015 at 09:01 AM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew friedman, bill plaschke, dodgers, don mattingly, old school, shifts

Mattingly, Ethier downplay screaming match in Dodgers dugout | New York Post

This didn’t look good.

“There was nothing there other than he was mad about the ump’s call that he missed the call in there, and I was trying to settle him down,” Mattingly said. “I didn’t want him thrown out of the game, and Andre’s pretty emotional. It was nothing more than trying to settle him down.

“He’s maybe yelling at me because I’m trying to settle him down, but it was nothing between us.”

Ethier concurred.

“We weren’t arguing. … There’s a certain sequence, something that happens after the play and it didn’t happen and he was questioning why and I was telling him,” Ethier said. “It wasn’t like we were going at each other. … I’m pretty sure it looked worse than it was. We were talking about it the next inning.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2015 at 08:45 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Mets defeat Dodgers in Game 5, advance to NLCS |

“For the entire ballclub, this is unbelievable,” Murphy said. “This is such a lot of hard work. From the top of the organization to the bottom, from what [general manager] Sandy [Alderson] was able to give us at the Trade Deadline to the way guys have played, everybody has gotten a piece of this at some point. That’s what makes it so special.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2015 at 06:41 AM | 149 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, mets, playoffs

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

NY Mag: Mets Fan Beaten Outside Dodger Stadium by Mother and Son Diehards

I didn’t realize Chase Utley’s mom was at Game 1.

Following the Dodgers 3-1 loss in game one of the National League Division Series, a mother-and-son duo reportedly set upon a Mets fan in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium. The attack took place after the Mets fan got into some kind of verbal spat with the pair. One witness told the L.A. Times that the assault came amid a larger brawl. The son hit the victim “so hard he was just knocked out immediately,” said Sean Gould, also a Mets fan. He added, “You heard his skull hitting the concrete.”


The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: October 14, 2015 at 11:27 PM | 74 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, fan violence, mets

NY Magazine: Mother and Son beat Mets fan outside Dodger Stadium

Following the Dodgers 3-1 loss in game one of the National League Division Series, a mother-and-son duo reportedly set upon a Mets fan in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium. The attack took place after the Mets fan got into some kind of verbal spat with the pair. One witness told the L.A. Times that the assault came amid a larger brawl. The son hit the victim “so hard he was just knocked out immediately,” said Sean Gould, also a Mets fan. He added, “You heard his skull hitting the concrete.”

You won the game, you violent jerks!

The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: October 14, 2015 at 11:25 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, fan violence, mets

Every eye in the Mets universe turns to Jacob deGrom | New York Post

Matt who?

“We’ve got our horse going,” Lucas Duda said of deGrom.

Travis d’Arnaud, who will catch deGrom Thursday, sounded extremely confident in the right-hander.

“It’s because of what he’s done since the day he’s been here,” d’Arnaud said of the 2014 Rookie of the Year. “He’s got the perfect personality for this moment. He’s a simple man who likes to keep things simple and just go out there and pitch. He’s been stellar for us all year.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 14, 2015 at 06:19 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, jacob degrom, mets, playoffs, zach greinke

Monday, October 12, 2015

Dodgers Pick Kershaw to Start on 3 Days’ Rest in Game 4 - The New York Times

“Do you have to explain that one? He’s pretty good,” manager Don Mattingly said about Kershaw. “No matter if we’re down 2-1 or up 2-1, we feel like he’s the right guy.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 12, 2015 at 09:44 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, mets, playoffs

Lee Smith: In Defense of the Chase Utley Slide

Lee Smith (no, the other one) weighs in:

Middle infielders learn this principle in youth baseball, long before they get to the professional ranks. If you turn your back on the incoming runner, you’re putting yourself at risk. This is one reason why it’s harder, and more dangerous, for the second baseman to turn the double play than it is for the shortstop. At second, you have to square yourself to receive the relay from short or third so you’re always giving some of your back to the runner, which means you have to be very aware of where he is out of the corner of your eye. It’s easier to turn two from short because you can fully see the runner all the way from first. Also, the shortstop has his own form of deterrence: the runner knows he is coming straight at one of the best arms on the field, cocked and loaded with a projectile that is about to thrown extremely hard at the very place from where the runner has just come and now stands as an obstacle. If the base runner values his face, he will get out of the way in any way possible.

That’s how infielders watch out for themselves. If on the other hand an infielder turn his back on a runner, he makes his entire body vulnerable to injury, even if the base runner has no intention of doing him harm. In this instance, even had Utley come straight into second with a relatively gentle slide, Tejada might have gotten badly hurt. The shortstop’s feet were planted right around second base, and that’s the second rule middle infielders learn about the double play—be very careful planting your feet, lest you make yourself susceptible to a very bad injury.
These aren’t the days of Ty Cobb, when some ballplayers were looking to hurt their colleagues. But they’re still professional athletes who are playing hard to beat each other. Moreover, in spite of rules rightly intended to protect the ballplayers, the size and speed of 21st-century athletes further increases the risks in the middle of the diamond. It can get dangerous in there, which is why middle infielders are taught to protect and defend themselves.

For instance, the reason middle infielders jump after throwing the relay on the double play isn’t to leapfrog over the incoming runner like an Olympic hurdler—though it’s cool when you can do it!—but to get even an inch off the ground so that if you get hit the worst injury you suffer is a bruise rather than a break. An additional upside to the jump is that the middle infielder can land all elbows and knees on the sliding base runner to remind him that the infielder is also capable of delivering bruises. And if the base runner is a real jerk who has a habit of looking to actually injure infielders, you might give him a taste of his own medicine and come down leading with spikes.

As a middle infielder himself, Utley knows all this. Indeed, when he was with the Phillies, Utley was one of the game’s premier second baseman. He always played hard, but I doubt very strongly that he’s looking to hurt opponents, especially other middle infielders. In fact, unlike American League pitchers who can throw at hitters with impunity knowing that no one can throw at their heads in return, Utley understands that his opponents know just where to find him—right there in the middle of the infield and as vulnerable as anyone on the double play pivot. And even when he’s not in the field but is coming off the bench to hit, shortstops and second baseman can still tame him and make him hit the deck fast. There’s nothing that discourages a base runner from coming into second hard like seeing a big-league middle infielder drop down under and throw the relay to first from a submarine angle.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 12, 2015 at 09:21 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: chase utley, dodgers, mets, neighborhood play, suspension

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