Astros 8, Dodgers 5

Clayton Kershaw insisted after the game that he felt comfortable on the mound, that he was getting ahead of hitters and that they were just hitting good pitches. I’ll buy that to an extent. It also could be that the Astros were just a better-hitting team than the Giants, whom Kershaw shut down on one run and one hit over seven innings in his previous start last Wednesday night. At any rate, the eight-game winning streak — which some Houston TV or radio reporter, I’m not sure which, thought was a perfectly appropriate topic to ask about AFTER the game to both Torre and Kershaw, both of whom seemed justifiably bewildered by it — is over. Also over is my 3 1/2-year old Compaq Presario, which isn’t completely dead (after all, I’m typing on it now), but it’s at least time for last rites. It gallantly fought through one final evening, but I’m heading to Best Buy or Staples or whatever I can find in the morning to seek out a replacement. Sounds like a tax deduction to me. I was told by the Astros’ IT guy, who spent about three hours trying to patch this thing together just enough to get me through the night, that 3 1/2 years is a life well lived for a laptop, particularly one that gets banged around the way a baseball writer’s typically does. But all good things must come to an end. … Dodgers fall to 10-4. Pods losing to the Giants 6-2 in the eighth. Good pitching matchup tomorrow night, Randy Wolf against Roy Oswalt, 5:05 L.A. time.

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  • TeamHasHoles

    Kershaw didn’t spot his fastball, it didn’t seem to have much movement and if you can’t do either, you won’t get big league hitter out consistently. He really needs to develop that changeup. He threw strikes, but once again, way too many pitches and he couldn’t finish off guys.

    Manny came oh so close in the 9th… Shame the Dodgers couldn’t take advantage of Russ Ortiz when they had him on the ropes, particularly in the first when he couldn’t find the strike zone. Thoroughly forgettable game for James Loney in his hometown. Swinging at bad pitches all night long.

  • grumpy3b

    Tony, dude!!

    Just 3-1/2 yrs from a laptop? That is what happens when you buy consumer grade laptops. Stick to the business builds from you favorite mfg. I have a couple Dell Latitudes which are around 7-10yrs old and still run just fine. My current HP NX9420 is now about 4yrs old and I just upgraded the HDD to 500mb and three new batteries. I can work a full 14-18hrs using wireless and w/o external power if need be.

    Thing is consumer grade laptops, like your Presario, are really made from the cheapest components and simply just not built to deal with the rigors of your travel schedule.

    Business grade laptops OTH, have a vastly superior build quality. Things like a magnesium-alloy frame and case over plastic and aluminum (if you are lucky) internal frames, and real keyboards with zero flex to them are just a couple fast examples of key differences. It is really like night and day and once you try a business grade laptop you will never want to be in the same room as a consumer line like the Presario. Cost a bit more but worth every penny if you make your living with the thing.

    Being self employed as a networking consultant for near 20yrs now, broke me of skimping on either off-brand or consumer lines quickly. Even though I can repair about any part in the thing if I can get my hands on the part, I still pop for the 24/7/365 onsite next day support. it is easier than trying to order parts and get them here fast. Oh, one last bonus, business grade systems all come with US based tech support, at least with Dell, I am not certain about HP but I believe they also have business support exclusively in the US. And, oh, yeah, stay away from Gateway at all costs!! ;)

    Generally speaking you have to order business grade laptops online from the MFG. But if you select the correct system, that is not CTO (customize to order) and is a pre-build, you can often get them over night. I also always travel with two laptops. My old one and my new/current beast.

  • Dan Adams

    Hey Tony.

    3 1/2 years on a compaq presario is good. The Compaq presario I had caught on fire a few years back. No lie. I was typing away, smoke came out of it initially and then a 1 1/2 inch flame. I ran to get my camera, but the flame was out by the time I got back to my desk to take the picture. Crazy stuff.

    If you go to Best Buy, check out the Apple’s. A little more expensive (bigger tax deduction), but well worth it long term.

    Anyway, thanks for writing and keeping us baseball nerds in the know with what’s going on with the boys in blue.

  • Dan Adams

    Tony

    I had a Compaq Presario catch on fire a few years back. No joke. No lie. I was typing away, and smoke came out of it and I knew something was wrong. Then, in a few seconds a one and a half inch flame came up from just below the screen. Crazy stuff. Anyway, if you go to Best Buy check out the Apples. A little more (bigger tax deduction), but well worth it. Getting an apple is worth it long term.

    Anyway, thanks for writing and keeping Dodgers’ fans in the know with what is going on with the boys in blue.

    Grace.

  • phillydodger

    yes it was a thoroughly forgetable game for Loney, and maybe even Kershaw was trying to hard, being a Dallas boy.

    what about Kemp not scoring from third on Kershaw’s bunt that Pudge fired to second? where was Kemp’s aggressive lead…

    still not sure why Torre now has Eithier and Loney lump together and still has Kemp in the seven hole…geez, at least move Kemp up to five after Andre.

  • Orel Fixation

    Thanks Tony, once again, for the best Dodger report online. I don’t comment much at all, but read your posts every day.
    Many of us Dodger fans think Manny belongs in the four spot … wonder if this is on Joe’s mind at all?

  • Brooklyn Dodger

    Agree with THH.

    Also, Kershaw was having problems throwing his curve for strikes consistently. Lots of foul balls are to a large degree indicative of his stuff, but also of the trouble he had “finish[ing] off guys.”

    With runners on first and third in the 4th inning, and one out, I thought the Dodgers would have been best served sending up a hitter for Kershaw. He had already thrown a lot of pitches in the first three innings, and it didn’t appear he was going to last a whole lot longer. Since they were probably going to be forced to go to the bullpen relatively early, and given that they had the day off on Monday, I didn’t think it a wise idea to give up the second out with a runner on third. A fly ball would have gotten Kemp home from third, and who knows what might have happened if they produced a hit in that situation. Even if they didn’t score, it just looked as if Kershaw wouldn’t be around much longer (and he wasn’t).

  • http://crzblue.mlblogs.com/ crzblue

    Agree with Grumpy on the Dell. That is what I have for my home laptop and I had it for a while now. My work laptop that I take on business trip and Dodger road games ’cause I end up doing some work on the road is an IBM.
    .
    Tony: Thanks for all the inside reports you give us. We really appreciate it!
    Emma

  • GScott

    Anyone else think we could have 6 starting all stars between Martin, Hudson, Furcal, Manny, Ethier, and Kemp?

  • Harpo JB

    It’s WAY premature to try predicting the likely all-star starters, but if you insist, I’d bet a crumbled cookie that the only one will be Ramirez.

    There just aren’t enough Dodgers fans who vote often enough to get any other Dodger players in the starting lineup.

  • GScott

    Well, I did my part. I voted 75 times (3 e-mail addresses) for those 6 today. Hopefully Dodger fans catch the All-Star fever in ’09 like they did in ’05(?) for Izzy. And hopefully the Dodgers put out an advertising campaign this year like they did for Izzy.