All posts by Micah

Let’s Get Max Muncy To The All-Star Game

The rosters for the 2018 MLB All-Star Game were announced today. Last year, the Dodgers had five players representing them on the NL roster. This year, the Dodgers have two: Matt Kemp and Kenley Jansen. Last year, Dodger fans rallied to get Justin Turner on the roster via the final vote. This year, Max Muncy needs your help to make the roster. You can vote for him here.

Muncy has been the most surprising impact player the Dodgers have had this year. He’s only played in 66 games, but he has a .270 batting average with 20 home runs and 38 runs batted in. He’s been impressing everyone with his power and glove. Muncy, however, is going up against some tough competition, so he needs your help. It’s really easy to vote. Just go to https://www.mlb.com/all-star/final-vote and pick Muncy for the National League and pick someone else for the American League.

If you don’t believe me that Muncy deserves to be an All-Star, take a look at this:

Who’s More Surprising? Muncy or Stripling

Okay, it’s pole time. Yesterday, after the Dodgers beat the Braves, David Vassegh, the host of the Dodger post-game show, asked fans to call in and explain who is a more surprising breakout player: Max Muncy or Ross Stripling? I called into the show and gave him my opinion. But now I want yours.

For me, Muncy is more surprising. Until he hit a home run in San Diego this year, I’d never even heard his name. But now, I have him on my Fantasy Baseball team. When he comes to the plate, I’m confident that he’s going to put together a quality at-bat.

Stripling is a surprise, but he’s not quite as surprising. He’s showed the potential to be the Dodgers ace in the past, but now he’s living up to his potential. He’s leading Dodger pitching with a 5-1 record and a 1.65 ERA. His WHIP is an impressive 1.05. Yesterday afternoon, he only allowed baserunners in the third inning.

So which Dodger surprised you more? Muncy or Stripling? Comment below and let me know.

May 2018: Struggling Becomes Slight Improvement

The Dodgers got off to an absolutely horrible start this year. Because of this, just about every Dodger fan was freaking out. But now, the Dodgers seem to be doing a little better. On May 1, the Dodgers were in fourth place and they were nine games behind the Diamondbacks.

The lowest point of the month, and possibly the season, came in the middle of the month when the Dodgers were swept in by the Reds in a four-game series, followed immediately by two losses to the Marlins. During this six-game stretch, they scored only sixteen runs but they allowed thirty runs.

Fortunately, the Dodgers managed to right the ship for the final game against the Marlins. Justin Turner drove in five runs and collected five hits. Once the series was over, they traveled to Washington D.C. and swept the Nationals in three games. Since then, they have a 6-4 record.

Big Events:

  • Walker Buehler was called up to the big leagues. He pitched the first game of the series against the Padres in Mexico. Buehler threw six no-hit innings and the bullpen finished the no-hitter.
  • Clayton Kershaw was placed on the DL with left biceps tendinitis.
  • The Dodgers called up switch-pitcher Pat Venditte.
  • Justin Turner returned from the DL and made an almost immediate impact.
  • Buehler and Ross Stripling established themselves as the best pitchers on the Dodgers. They have a combined 6-2 record with a 1.94 ERA.
  • Kenley Jansen collected two saves in one day, earning the save in both games in the doubleheader against the Nationals.
  • Dodgers rally late against the Phillies to score five runs after being no-hit through five innings.

Do The Dodgers Have Some New Aces?

If you haven’t noticed, the Dodgers are finally playing better baseball. After their terrible start, they’ve now won 8 of their last 10 games. What’s the key? I think it’s that they’ve got a couple rising aces. Those new aces are Ross Stripling and Walker Buehler.

Stripling is the more surprising of the two. Do you remember when Stripling made his Major League Debut? He threw a really dominant game against the Giants. But then, reality set in. Stripling’s pitching became average. At times, he was the worst Dodger pitcher.

But we have a new Ross Stripling this year. He took over as the best starter on the team when injuries began to plague the rotation. He’s been leading the Dodgers to victory with his 2-1 record and 1.74 ERA. No, I didn’t type that wrong. He has a 1.74 ERA.

On Friday, while I was sitting in traffic at the California, Mexico border, Stripling was destroying the Padres. He allowed one run over 6.2 innings and struck out ten batters. The new Ross Stripling has been a ton of fun to watch.

Now, I’ll talk about Buehler. The only surprising thing about Buehler is that he’s already in the big leagues. A series of injuries brought Buehler to the majors. Buehler showed why he belongs in the Majors almost immediately.

Buehler led the Dodgers to a win again today, allowing only one run over seven innings with eight strikeouts. The young pitcher is exactly what the Dodgers needed when the called him up.

Who’s Smarter? The Front Office Or The Fans?

This offseason, Dodger fans were calling for the front office to spend money and strengthen the team. The front office, however, refused to spend money. While other teams were telling their fans about their big trades and free agent signings, the Dodgers were telling us about the luxury tax threshold.

They are trying to fill their bullpen with a bunch of pitchers who belong in Triple-A. This offseason, they foolishly counted their chickens before they hatched. They expected everyone to be healthy. This meant they didn’t get another starting pitcher because they assumed Clayton Kershaw, who has been injured in the straight seasons, would be healthy all year.

Strangely enough, the only successful move they made this offseason was not supposed to help the way the team played. When they traded for Matt Kemp, it was entirely a salary dump. But Kemp has played well.

After we saw how good the Kemp trade was, it seems like the Dodgers were right this offseason. But now we know differently. The teams who spent money to improve are now playing better, while the Dodgers are struggling. The bullpen is a disaster. The starting rotation is a wreck. And the offense is pretty pathetic.

Everyone wants to blame Dave Roberts. But what can he do? He’s not the one in charge of setting up his roster. He’s the victim of poor management by the front office.

When I look at the teams who spent money this offseason, I begin to wonder who’s smarter. Is it the stingy front office or the fans? It sure feels like we had an idea that would actually bring success.

It’s Time For A Bullpen Upgrade

Let’s just face it. The Dodger bullpen is terrible. Last year, once games got to the seventh inning, we could be sure that if the Dodgers had the lead, they would win. This year, the one thing you can count on is the Dodger bullpen blowing games.

While Dave Roberts deserves some of the blame for the Dodgers’ struggles, he doesn’t deserve it all. In fact, Roberts has no control over the fact that the bullpen is a wreck. He’s not the one who decided to let Brandon Morrow and Tony Watson walk this offseason.

This year, the Dodgers are relying on Pedro BáezJT Chargois, and Daniel Hudson to get them to Kenley Jansen.

Báez has enough bad outings that we roll our eyes when he takes the mound, but he has enough good outings that the Dodgers are keeping him around. He is most famous for hitting/walking batters with the bases loaded. So why are they keeping him around? It probably has to do with the fact that they only have to pay him $1.5 million.

Chargois blew yet another lead last night. In 17 appearances, he has a 4.40 ERA and three blown saves. The Dodgers are probably keeping him around because he costs them just over half a million dollars.

Hudson has an 8.68 ERA in nine appearances. The thirty-one-year-old righthander has seen much better days. He’s still on the club because he’s just about the cheapest loss you can get. He costs the Dodgers less than half a million dollars.

Did you catch my point? The Dodgers are losing because they’re too cheap to get quality arms. What would the season be like if they had spent a bit more money to keep Morrow and Watson? They’d have AT LEAST 10 MORE WINS!

I know it’s too late to get Morrow and Watson back, but the Dodgers need to make a trade. The bullpen is ridiculous right now. They need to spend money to fix the pitching staff!