Dodgers 3, Red Sox 1

Rafael Furcal went 3 for 4, raising his average to .385. Chad Billingsley pitched five superb innings, allowing a run on two hits with seven strikeouts and three walks. The boys scored two in the eighth to break a 1-1 tie, Mark Sweeney driving home Andre Ethier with the winner with an RBI double. James Loney plated Sweeney with a single. Joe Beimel, Ramon Troncoso, Scott Proctor and Jonathan Broxton held the Sox to one hit over the final four innings. Dodgers go to 10-17-4 for the spring. … And they just dimmed the lights at 10:54 p.m. Good. I was getting a headache.

Blinded by the light

I can’t even begin to put into words how much brighter it is here than in the past. I’m not sure I like it yet. It just doesn’t look like Dodger Stadium. It has this weird, green flourescent sort of feel to it. But I’m sure the 83 games I’m going to see here over the next six months will be enough for me to get used to it. It’s just that it sort of overwhelms the senses the first time you see it. … Doesn’t look like the Christmas tree sales down in the bullpens are especially brisk. Guess they’ll pick up around the Holidays. … Jeff Kent is in the lineup, batting fourth. He ran before the game. Guess he must have felt OK. He does need at-bats in advance of Monday’s opener.

The old yard, all spruced up

Actually, I haven’t been down on the field-level concourse yet to see how much wider it is. But from the press box, I can see what they have done to the bullpens. There are trees out there. Or are the hedges? Not sure, but it’s some kind of foliage, which will no doubt make the relievers feel outdoorsy as they warm up to come into the game in key situations. What I’m really looking forward to is seeing what the new lights look like when it gets dark tonight. Supposedly, the place is going to be twice as bright, or at least that’s what Frank told us at dinner one night in Vero Beach. … No news so far today. Jeff Kent is supposed to take BP in a simulated game at 3:30. It’s now 3:47, so they can start anytime.

Dodgers 2, Angels 2

The Dodgers played the Angels and DIDN’T LOSE!!!!!!! Andre Ethier, playing RF, impersonated Dave Parker in the 1979 All-Star Game (look THAT ONE up) and threw out two runners on the basepaths, including his Vlad-ness trying to stretch a single in the sixth inning and Brandon Wood trying to score on a would-be sac fly in the eighth. Blake DeWitt took another step toward being the opening-day 3B by making a game-saving stop of a ball hit by Maicer Izturis in the eighth that would have gone up the LF line, turning it instead into a harmless infield single. DeWitt then worked a six-pitch walk with two outs in the ninth to load the bases, only to have Juan Pierre fly out two pitches later, leaving the bases loaded and leaving Pierre’s average for the spring at a ro(bust) .179.
After the game, Joe Torre still wouldn’t shed any light on the OF situation.
“I’ll let you know when I know,” he said.
In other words, he’ll let us know when he figures out how to break the news to JP. That’s why Joe gets paid what he gets paid. As for why JP gets paid what he gets paid, well, that isn’t entirely clear.
Dodgers go to 9-17-4 for the spring. As Ned Colletti pointed out in Joe’s office, they become the first team in the history of baseball to play to a tie in Florida, Arizona, China and California, all in the same spring. Woo-hooooooo!!!!