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Friday, September 11, 2020

‘I could have walked away’: Charley Steiner broadcasting Dodger games from his living room during pandemic

Steiner decided he would opt out of the season, just like 22 players throughout the game, including Dodgers veteran starter David Price, unknowing whether he’d ever be back.

“I was prepared to say this is the end of the line,’’ Steiner said. “And if it was the end of the line, it was the pandemic that took me. I could have walked away. I was prepared to walk away into the sunset.

“Then, I get this reprieve from the governor.’’

If Steiner wasn’t going to the broadcast booth, Dodgers executive vice president Lon Rosen decided to bring the broadcast booth to him. Steiner immediately signed off on the idea.

“I feel like an astronaut orbiting the earth,’’ Steiner said. “You know there’s stuff going on down there because I can see it on my control pattern. Really, this could be the wave of the future.

“What do you get being at the ballpark now? You don’t see the players. Can’t talk to anybody. There are no fans. So as long as there is technology, this is great.

“Besides, there are no lines at the urinal at my house.’’

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 11, 2020 at 11:14 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcasting, charlie steiner, coronavirus, dodgers

Monday, August 31, 2020

Dodgers send Stripling to Blue Jays

The Dodgers have traded right-hander Ross Stripling to the Blue Jays for two players to be named later, the clubs announced on Monday.

Stripling, an All-Star in 2018, is 23-25 with a 3.68 ERA over 143 appearances (59 starts) in his five-year MLB career, all with the Dodgers. He has a 5.61 ERA in seven starts this year.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 31, 2020 at 05:27 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, dodgers, ross stripling

Friday, August 07, 2020

Los Angeles Dodgers’ defense could be among the best in recent memory

The Dodgers might rank up there with the two best defensive teams I’ve seen in my lifetime: the 2001 Mariners and 2016 Cubs. Now, that’s an opinion open to argument, but here are some numbers to back it up. The Mariners pre-date the DRS era (since 2003), but they have the fifth-best total zone runs saved rating between 1950 and 2002:

1973 Orioles: plus-119
1969 Orioles: plus-114
1990 A’s: plus-107
1984 Twins: plus-106
2001 Mariners: plus-104…


The 2016 Cubs are plus-96 in total zone, so they are close to the 2001 Mariners, but a reason to consider those two clubs as the best of the 21st century is they rank 1-2 in lowest batting average allowed on balls in play since 2000 ... by a large margin:

2016 Cubs: .255
2001 Mariners: .260
2011 Rays: .265
2002 Angels: .269
2003 Mariners: .269

So, let’s have some fun and go position by position: 2001 Mariners vs. 2016 Cubs vs. 2020 Dodgers. Who is the best defensive team—if not of all time, then at least of this century?

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 07, 2020 at 09:57 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: defense, dodgers

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Dodgers’ Dave Roberts says Giants manager Gabe Kapler is engaging in ‘gamesmanship’ with lineup announcements

Kapler did not announce his starting pitcher (Logan Webb) for Saturday afternoon’s game against the Dodgers until 7:30 AM local time. He did not reveal his starting lineup until 90 minutes before first pitch, per Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area. In response, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts expressed some combination of amusement and annoyance.

“It’s a little bit of gamesmanship, we’ll call it,” Roberts told reporters, including SB Nation’s Eric Stephens, prior to Saturday’s game. “To each, their own.”

It should be noted that Kapler is under no obligation to release any of the above information ahead of time. In that sense, the only “rule” he’s violating is an unwritten one between managers and teams. It should also be noted that Kapler has contemplated the legitimacy and value of that unwritten rule before, as The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly highlighted last week.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 26, 2020 at 10:13 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, giants

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Dodgers’ Gavin Lux: Won’t make Opening Day roster

Lux was optioned by the Dodgers on Tuesday, Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reports.

In somewhat of a surprising move, the highly-talented young infielder won’t be part of the Dodgers’ Opening Day roster. The 22-year-old didn’t do a ton in his 23-game debut last season, hitting a modest .240/.305/.400, but it’s not clear that he has anything left to prove in the minors, as he hit an incredible .392/.478/.719 in 49 games for Triple-A Oklahoma City. It’s likely that this move was made primarily because Lux wasn’t able to report to camp until July 10 for undisclosed reasons. There’s still a good chance he fills a major role for the Dodgers this season once he’s in game shape.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 21, 2020 at 01:32 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, gavin lux

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Chico is the man in Dodgers’ intrasquad games

Chris Taylor made a mistake in the second inning of the Dodgers’ intrasquad game Saturday. He ran on Chico.

Taylor tagged up from first base on a routine fly ball to left field, where Chico camped under it. Chico, No. 97, fired a strike to second base that easily beat Taylor for a double play. Both teams erupted with cheers and laughter inside an empty Dodger Stadium. The lesson was clear: Don’t run on Chico.

Francisco Herrera, the man known as Chico, is on the Dodgers’ payroll but not as a player. He’s been a clubhouse attendant — a clubbie in baseball speak — since 2008, initially in a part-time role and now in a full-time capacity.

He hasn’t played competitive baseball since his two years playing shortstop at Los Angeles Valley College a decade ago. But the Dodgers have needed a body as a result of a shortage of players and they’ve turned to Herrera. The Hollywood native has been the left fielder for one of the two teams in the Dodgers’ six scrimmages played in training camp, occasionally snatching the spotlight from the major leaguers around him.

“It’s been surreal,” Herrera, 30, said. “The guys loving it and just going out there and having fun.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 15, 2020 at 08:57 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

SI: Maury Wills Looks Back on Dodgers Career

Interestingly, Wills had a nearly identical number of stolen base opportunities between two seasons, with 348 in 1961 and 349 in 1962. But he attempted more than twice as many steals in 1962 as he had the previous year, running 33.6 percent of his opportunities. He’d steal 104 bases in all, shattering Ty Cobb’s 47-year-old single-season record of 96.

“I never intended to break Ty Cobb’s record,” Wills said. “I just thought of stealing bases. That became our attack. I would get on and steal second and then I’d steal third. Somebody’d hit a long fly ball (for a sacrifice fly) and Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale would shut ‘em out.”


He also stole with an excellent rate of success in 1962, getting caught stealing just 13 times that season. He attributing his success to studying opposing catchers and pitchers during pregame warm-ups.

“All the players always when it was to their advantage, they would go to the clubhouse and have that soda or cup of coffee or whatever,” Wills said. “I would sit on the bench and watch the opposition. It was something, Pete Reiser had taught me that. I always watched the opposing team take infield because I wanted to see the catcher throw to second base.”

villageidiom Posted: April 28, 2020 at 10:43 AM | 41 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, los angeles, los angeles dodgers, maury wills, stolen bases

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Man beaten in Dodgers parking lot sues team for negligence

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Dodgers are being sued for negligence by a man who was attacked in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium and left with brain damage, his lawyers announced Friday.

The lawsuit, filed this week by Rafael Reyna and his wife, contends that the stadium lacked adequate security.

“We have no comment” on the lawsuit, team spokesman Joe Jareck said in an email.

Reyna, 45, was attacked while walking to his car shortly after midnight on March 30, 2019, after watching a 13-inning game that ended in a 5-4 win by the Arizona Diamondbacks, according to the lawsuit.

 

QLE Posted: April 25, 2020 at 12:51 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, security

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

2020 Was Supposed to Be the Dodgers’ Year. Could It Still Be?

No team stands to lose more from the loss or truncation of the 2020 Major League Baseball season due to the coronavirus than the Dodgers. They may have traded three prospects to Boston for few or no games from Mookie Betts and his $27 million salary. As the team that draws half a million more fans than any other franchise, they are losing the most gate revenue. As the deepest team in baseball, their depth may be less valuable in a shorter season. And as the clear favorites in the National League West, their road to the postseason is more difficult as more games come off the schedule.

The smaller the sample size, the less likely the better team wins. In his four years as Dodgers manager, Dave Roberts has guided Los Angeles to a division championship every year. But if those four seasons were truncated at 60 games, the Dodgers would have won only once, last year. The Diamondbacks, Rockies and Giants each took a turn in first place after 60 games.

“I absolutely agree from that side of things,” Roberts said. “When you shorten the season, less variables come into play. The smaller the sample size the more it brings other teams into play, which is great. But I do think when and if we start the season the expanded rosters will ultimately help our club.”

In 1981, following a two-month strike, players were given just nine days to prepare for the resumption of the season in August. Twenty-five-man rosters were not expanded. Labor stoppages in 1990 and 1995 led to two and three added roster spots, respectively, following 21 and 25 days of training.

A consideration of the effects of current conditions on a particular team.

QLE Posted: April 22, 2020 at 12:56 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: 2020 season, dodgers, verducci

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Today in Baseball History: The “Screen Monster” is erected in Los Angeles

The Brooklyn Dodgers played their last game at Ebbets Field in 1957. The Los Angeles Dodgers played their first game at Dodger Stadium in 1962. It took some doing to get Dodger Stadium built and opened — and a great new book just came out about that if you’re curious about all the good and the bad went that into it — so the Dodgers needed someplace to play for a few years.

The first choice was the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, but talks with city officials broke down. Enter the Los Angeles Coliseum. It’s an historic, venerable building now and was even in 1958 when the Dodgers decided to call it their temporary home. The problem: it’s not very well-shaped for baseball:

Your eye is likely drawn to that very short porch in left field. It was 250-feet to be exact. Left-center was not much better: a mere 320 feet. Meanwhile, the center field fence they’d eventually erect was 425 feet straightaway and right-center was 440 feet away. A home run in that direction is practically halfway to Alhambra.

The dimensions weren’t the only problem. The single deck of seats, the bright California sun and new fans who tended to wear brighter colors than the old fans back east made picking up fly balls extraordinarily difficult. “Those rows of seats go so high, it’s awful hard to see anything but high flies,” Willie Mays said. “Line drives are murder.” Don Drysdale was more blunt: “It’s nothing but a sideshow. Who feels like playing baseball in this place?”

The story of a team, an ill-fitting stadium, and the steps the former took in an effort to deal with the latter.

QLE Posted: April 08, 2020 at 12:50 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, history, los angeles coliseum, the screen monster

Thursday, April 02, 2020

DirecTV, AT&T Customers Will Finally Get to See LA Dodgers Games — Once Baseball Season Starts

And now, for a bit of what I hope is legitimately good news:

DirecTV, U-verse and AT&T TV customers will finally get to watch Los Angeles Dodgers games again, after six years of blackout. AT&T and Spectrum Networks have announced a carriage deal that will bring the Dodgers’ regional sports network, Spectrum SportsNet LA, to those subscribers for the first time.

DirecTV/AT&T and Spectrum had failed to come to an agreement for six years, which left the Dodgers with only partial coverage in the Los Angeles market. Under the new deal, DirecTV customers will receive SportsNet LA starting today on channel 690, while AT&T TV and AT&T TV Now customers will start to see the channel on April 8.

The news comes, however, as the baseball season has been delayed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“This agreement underscores our commitment to provide all Dodgers fans the opportunity to enjoy our award-winning programming and live game coverage,” said Dan Finnerty, Senior Vice President, Spectrum Networks. “Working together with AT&T, we were able to reach an agreement to offer the region’s most popular teams to local fans across AT&T’s video platforms.”

 

QLE Posted: April 02, 2020 at 01:21 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: at&t, broadcasting, directv, dodgers

Monday, March 30, 2020

If 2020 season is cancelled, which teams would be hurt the most?

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred recently expressed his optimistic outlook, saying that he hoped the league would begin “gearing back up” in May. That would put a regular season return potentially at the end of June or at some point in July. He expressed that the league may have to get creative, likely referring to ideas like playing doubleheaders, extending the season deep into fall, and playing some games at neutral parks in warm-weather areas.

Manfred isn’t the only one champing at the bit for a return to normalcy. President Trump recently said he wanted to “open” the economy back up by Easter, meaning that our social isolation plan could be done in two weeks. And, frankly, I’m sure many of us are starting to become a little stir-crazy as we attempt to flatten the curve.

It’s hard to imagine life returning to normal when Coronavirus (COVID-19) is really starting to spread in the United States. It would be ill-advised for us to go back to business as usual. This is a time when we need to put other interests ahead of business interests. Frankly, there’s a very real possibility that there is no MLB season in 2020. Or, at the very least, there may be a point when Manfred has to choose between starting a season or protecting the health of the players and coaches, journalists, fans, and all of the many people that would interact with them and potentially become vectors for the virus.

In the event the 2020 season is cancelled, which teams stand to lose the most? Let’s take a look at some contenders.

 

 

QLE Posted: March 30, 2020 at 01:23 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: cancellations, dodgers, phillies, reds, shortened season, what if

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

L.A. Times: The Dodgers, Clayton Kershaw, Tim Tebow and Jesus Christ

Kershaw is a devout Christian, though unlike Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow, he is hardly in your face about it. Kershaw and Tebow are two highly famous young professional athletes who outwardly approach their strong faith in markedly different ways.

If there is a showy, look-at-me aspect to Tebow and his kneeling in prayer on the football field and near zeal off it, Kershaw is more understated in his approach, if no less sincere.

I’ve never heard him bring up God in postgame interviews or seen him point to the sky after a big strikeout. Yet, I still have a clear understanding of his commitment.

“I think everybody has different approaches to it,” Kershaw said. “For me, everything I do has a purpose to it beyond what’s in this lifetime. At the same time, on the field I have a job to do and that’s what I’m focused on.

“I guess you could say I’m a little more understated than Tim is. Not to say either one is wrong, that’s just kind of my personality a little bit.”

Indeed, even if it’s not exactly his way, Kershaw admires Tebow for using his high-profile platform to bring attention to his faith.

“I have a lot of respect for Tim,” Kershaw said. “I don’t know him personally, but I think what he’s doing is special. I think what he’s trying to do should be recognized, in whatever way that you try to do it. He’s playing football but I think there’s more to it than that.

Tripon Posted: January 18, 2012 at 11:14 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, rockies

Sunday, January 15, 2012

MLB Trade Rumors: Bartolo Colon Agrees to Sign With Unknown Team

Bartolo Colon has agreed to a deal with an unknown club reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (on Twitter). The right-hander wouldn’t divulge the team because he has not yet passed his physical.

Pretty sure it’s either the All-Stars or the Champs.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

L.A. Times: Helping baseball’s scouts in a post-‘Moneyball’ world

In the front offices of major league clubs, the statistics-vs.-scouts debate ended long ago. No club today could imagine winning without tapping the resources of the increasingly sophisticated statistical tools available as well as the experience of scouts trained to look at a kid today and project his tomorrows.

Yet that debate was very much alive in 2003, sparked by the book “Moneyball,” and by author Michael Lewis’ portrayal of how Oakland Athletics General Manager Billy Beane and assistant Paul DePodesta challenged the hegemony of the scouting community.

“Billy had his own idea about where to find future major league baseball players: inside Paul’s computer,” Lewis wrote. “He’d flirted with the idea of firing all the scouts and just drafting the kids straight from Paul’s laptop.”

The response from some owners was all too predictable. The A’s won, at less cost, with fewer scouts. In the winter following the publication of “Moneyball,” 103 scouts lost their jobs, according to veteran baseball executive Roland Hemond.

There was some small consolation in the timing. Hemond was among several baseball lifers concerned about how the sport treated scouts — the talent seekers living in chain hotels and eating fast food all summer, for wages so low that a savings account might be an extravagance.

Tripon Posted: January 14, 2012 at 05:20 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: business, dodgers, special topics

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Dodgers, Fox Sports Reach Settlement

A bankruptcy judge on Wednesday approved a settlement between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Fox Sports that clears the way for a sale of the team.

The settlement approved at a hearing in Delaware ends a contentious legal battle between the ball club and Fox.

Under the settlement, the Dodgers are giving up plans to sell media rights to games starting in 2014 and sticking with their existing contract with Fox, which gives Fox exclusive rights to try to negotiate a contract extension starting later this year.

Major League Baseball and the Dodgers’ committee of unsecured creditors support the settlement, which allows the team to be sold by April 30.


Long national nightmare #2397 finally on course for a wake-up call?

Don Malcolm Posted: January 11, 2012 at 01:05 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Mattingly: Braun shouldn’t be MVP if PED appeal fails.

Throwing that bogus 4.2% bump in HOF voting weight around already, eh Donnie.

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said he hopes that Milwaukee Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun is successful in appealing his positive test for a banned substance, but that it would “make sense” to revote on the MVP award, or strip Braun of the award if it is found that he indeed used a banned substance.

“In the end, I hope the appeal it’s something that was a mistake. I don’t want to see anything bad come out of it for him,” Mattingly said.

When asked if a player who tested positive for a banned substance should be stripped of the MVP award, Mattingly answered, “I don’t know. It makes sense though, a little bit. It’s not 10 years later, it’s a month later.”

...Mattingly said he thinks Kemp should’ve won the award in the first place.

“To me Matt was the best player in the game last year,” Mattingly said. “Ryan had a great year too.

“But you guys (the media) always ask me about unwritten rules, about catchers and stuff like that. Then we have the unwritten rules about voting, because he wasn’t on a winning team. You guys gotta get your unwritten rules together.”

Repoz Posted: January 10, 2012 at 05:59 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, dodgers, steroids

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Shaikin: Disney family to bid for Dodgers, sources say

Iwerks for the Dodgers and only the Dodgers!

The Disney name graced the last World Series champion in Southern California. The Disney name could grace the next World Series champion in town too, if Stanley Gold succeeds in his bid to buy the Dodgers.

The family of the late Roy Disney has partnered with Gold, entrusting the man who runs the family investment firm to lead the charge for the Dodgers and try to restore prominent local ownership to the team.

The partnership was disclosed Saturday by a person familiar with the bid but not authorized to discuss it. Neither Gold nor any member of Roy Disney’s family would comment Saturday, spokesman Terry Fahn said.

With a star-studded and deep-pocketed roster of bidders that could feature the likes of Magic Johnson, Joe Torre, Mark Cuban and Peter O’Malley, outgoing owner Frank McCourt appears to believe the Dodgers can sell for at least $1.6 billion.

Gold is in discussions with potential investors, according to two people familiar with the talks. Roy Disney, the nephew of Walt Disney, had a net worth of $1.4 billion in 2007, according to Forbes, before his divorce. The current net worth of the Roy Disney family is unclear.

Repoz Posted: January 08, 2012 at 11:59 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: business, dodgers, media

Friday, January 06, 2012

WSJ: Drinking With Mike Piazza

Domaine de la Rombacne Conte…mmm, squeezisito!

Mr. Piazza made this assertion halfway through a recent lunch at Gotham Bar and Grill in Manhattan. The ex-Met lives in Miami with his wife and two daughters but was back in New York for a few days, making a charity appearance and visiting friends. “I love coming back to New York. It’s always really emotional for me,” said Mr. Piazza, taking up a glass of Pierre Gimonnet Blanc de Blancs Champagne that Gotham wine director Eric Zillier had just poured. Mr. Piazza sniffed the wine. “That smells really good. I love Champagne—Cristal, Dom Pérignon.” He laughed. “As an athlete you’re drawn by the status.”

...But any potential wine project would have to wait until he was finished with his memoir, “Open Mike” (“I stole the title from an L.A. columnist,” he admitted). The book, which will be published in 2013, covers his time as a player and his philosophy of life. What else was he doing with his time? Well, there were his two young children. And there was golf. He’d been playing a lot of golf. “It’s a really humbling game,” he said.

My last question was perhaps even more obvious. Where did Mr. Piazza rate himself on the list of all-time great catchers? In the top 10? Top five? “I’m a humble person, but I’d definitely put myself in the top five. I’d say Johnny [Bench] first for his charisma and talent—then I’d say Roy Campanella—he won three MVPs, after all. And Yogi Berra. If I put myself over Yogi, people would say, ‘Who does he think he is, he put himself over Yogi?’ ” Who indeed? On the other hand, Mr. Piazza has that other possible future title: the Garibaldi of Sicilian wine.

Repoz Posted: January 06, 2012 at 03:45 PM | 24 comment(s)
  Beats: business, dodgers, history, media, mets

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

The Greatest Animated Sports .GIFs of 2011

32. Cliff Lee declines to run out his own grounder

I’m a firm opponent of the designated hitter rule, because just as I love to watch a punter try to scoop up a bad snap and try to throw it, or see a 7’1” center with no range try to chuck up a last-second three, I love watching pitchers hit.

Never will I come closer to seeing what it would be like if someone with my skill set tried to perform on a professional level. I mean, how nuts is this: in the National League, five to 10 percent of all at-bats are taken by men who, by everyone’s admission, are profoundly bad at it! It’s Dada performance art, and the ubiquity of such comical nonsense—over the course of a game, a season, and the history of baseball—is unrivaled by anything in any other sport.

This GIF features a delightful bonus: the catcher starts jogging to the dugout well before the play ends. It’s beautiful.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 04, 2012 at 09:33 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: braves, dodgers, online, phillies, twins

Andy Carey, helped preserve Larsen’s perfecto, dies

RIP,

Andy Carey, a former Yankees third baseman who helped preserve Don Larsen’s 1956 perfect game, passed away on Dec. 15 in Costa Mesa, Calif., his family announced. He was 80.

A career .260 hitter, Carey played in 11 Major League seasons from 1952-62, beginning with the Yankees at age 20 in ‘52 and spending nine seasons wearing pinstripes.

Born on Oct. 18, 1931, in Oakland, Calif., Carey signed with the Yankees after spending a summer playing semi-pro ball in Weiser, Idaho. As New York’s everyday third baseman in ‘55, Carey led the league with 11 triples and was known as a solid defender and clutch hitter.

Carey played on four Yankees World Series teams, winning rings with the 1956 and ‘58 squads. He is remembered as playing a key role in Larsen’s Oct. 8, 1956, perfecto against the Dodgers at Yankee Stadium.

Repoz Posted: January 04, 2012 at 02:58 PM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, obituaries, royals, white sox, yankees

Monday, January 02, 2012

hardball talk: Dodgers’ Ethier high on Theo’s wish list

The Cubs are looking for another outfielder long-term and a guy like Andre Ethier could be a good fit.

Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune says Ethier is high on Theo Epstein’s wish list and the Dodgers may not have enough funds to keep him around when his contract expires after 2012 now that they gave Matt Kemp a huge payday and have a contract extension for Clayton Kershaw looming.

But, the former second round pick is still superb at getting on base, with a career .364 OBP, thanks in part to a .291 career AVG. He won’t turn 30 until the 2012 season’s second week, so there are still several years left of his prime.

If Epstoyer can make a deal for Ethier in 2012, I wouldn’t be surprised if they made that move. But that might be hard to do. What do the Cubs have that the Dodgers want? Not much in the way of young talent to trade.

But if Ethier hits free agency this fall (man, feels weird to say that now that it’s 2012), expect Epstoyer to go hard after him.

The Cubs already have David DeJesus for the next two seasons (with an option for a third year) and Brett Jackson quickly ascending through the system, but if Theo and Jed Hoyer are somehow able to deal Alfonso Soriano and Marlon Byrd, Ethier could be a great fit. He could play right and push DeJesus to left.

A starting outfield of DeJesus, Jackson and Ethier in 2013 would be mighty nice.

Tripon Posted: January 02, 2012 at 05:00 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, rumors

Friday, December 30, 2011

Ross Newhan: Who Needs Another Out of Town Owner?

The Out of Towners? Why, that had Sandy Baron and Sandy Dennis in it…on Sandy Koufax’s birthday no less!

The latest name to emerge is that of billionaire Steven Cohen—first revealed in the Wall Street Journal and expanded on in Wednesday’s editions of the Los Angeles Times. Cohen, 55, is the founder of SAC Capital Advisors, a Connecticut-based investment firm that controls $14 billion in assets. In September, Forbes estimated Cohen’s net worth at $8.l3 billion. According to multiple sources who talked to me only on the bases of anonymity Thursday, Cohen has built his hedge fund operation on the basis of total control and, at times, a volcanic temper. Two of his former managers have pleaded guilty to insider trading. and the SEC, according to a lawyer involved in the federal investigation of suponeanaed records, confided that the government continues to look into those record but that no charges have been filed against Cohen or his company.

  Since league owners have final say in approving bidders, it isn’t clear whether that investigation will or would create discomfort among owners if Cohen comes up for a vote. It certainly has not stopped Cohen from looking into the possible purchase of the Dodgers. According to The Times’ story he has met with several owners regarding the challenge of owning a sports team, retained Steve Greenberg, the former deputy commissioner and now a sports broker with Allen & Co. in New York and he has been accompanied in his meetings with the owners by noted player agent Arn Tellem, who is based in Los Angeles and could be a potential executive with the Dodgers if Cohen secures the team. Cohen has also retained Populous, a sports architecture firm, to suggest possible changes to Dodger Stadium that would improve comfort and safety.

...Both O’Malley and Gilbert refused comment Thursday, having signed the confidentiality agreement required of potential investors who have received a breakdown of Dodger finances from Blackstone Advisory Partners, the firm handling sale of the club, but the key question is rhetorical anyway. Why go to Connecticut or anywhere else when there are potential and quality owners in the neighborhood?

Repoz Posted: December 30, 2011 at 10:20 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: business, dodgers, history, media

Thursday, December 29, 2011

A Departing Q & A with George Vecsey

See ya, ol’ George! Gotta run…mom’s sending me down a righteous dish of escamoles!

Q. Was there any sports figure in particular that took issue with your column, enough to verbally abuse you; or threaten to harm you physically?

A: Really, only one. During the week of Watts in 1965, the Dodgers were pretty shook up, particularly African-American ones. A young pinch-runner named Willie Crawford missed 3B…costing a run, and, as I recall, a game. Afterward, in the clubhouse, we went to ask him about it. From the far end of the clubhouse, Willie Davis said (in the most gorgeous baritone), “Leave the kid alone.” I said, rather nicely, we had a job to do. Davis did not agree, and pretty quickly charged down the aisle of the clubhouse, looking like a man about to take a swing. From his own locker, John Roseboro stepped in and took the charge, as he did at home plate, saying, “Ummm, gentlemen, this is not the time or place for this.” (Or something like that, very calmly, in his own mellow voice.) Davis never got to me, for which I am grateful.

A day or two later, Roseboro got hit on the head by Marichal. Larry Fox of the Telly and I found Roseboro at the Dodger plane at the airport (we knew the clubhouse guy) and his bandages were covered by a Giant cap—Willie Mays’ cap. Willie was disgusted with what Marichal did. I tell this story often, to make the point of what a wonderful man Roseboro was. He should have been a manager.

...Q. How optimistic are you for the future of the U.S. Newspaper Industry?

A: Not. Newspapers are the engines that drive the Web. Without editors planning assignments and copy editors fixing mistakes, reporters quickly deteriorate into Underwear Guys writing blogs from their den. The sad thing is that everybody knows it—even politicians and business people know they need some source of actual information, even if they get whacked once in a while. But the economics and timidity of the newspaper business are working against that future. And the bloggers brag about knowing how things work from the sanctity of their dens.

Thanks to Lisa Swan.

Repoz Posted: December 29, 2011 at 02:31 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: business, dodgers, history, media

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

L.A. Times: Hedge-fund executive Steven Cohen is bidding for the Dodgers

Steven Cohen, a billionaire eight times over, is bidding for the Dodgers in a process tilted toward the high bidder.

However, the East Coast hedge-fund executive is not content to let his wealth speak for itself. He has engaged one of America’s notable sports architecture firms to propose renovations to Dodger Stadium, allied himself with one of baseball’s power brokers, secured the support of at least two prominent Angelenos and met with several major league owners.

He was joined in those meetings by Arn Tellem, an influential sports agent who could run the Dodgers if Cohen were to buy the team.

The developments were confirmed by several people familiar with the Dodgers sale process, each of whom said he could not comment publicly. Jonathan Gasthalter, a spokesman for Cohen, declined to comment.

Tripon Posted: December 28, 2011 at 06:45 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers

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