Ernie Johnson will provide play-by-play, while retired players Ron Darling and Cal Ripken will provide the color commentary, for the TBS broadcasts of the National League Division Series between the Dodgers and Atlanta Braves.
TBS is broadcasting every game in the best-of-five series. Craig Sager, more famous for his suit choices than his in-game reporting, will be the in-game reporter.
The radio plan is as follows: On 570-AM, Vin Scully will call innings 1-3, followed by Rick Monday and Charley Steiner in innings 4-6, followed by Scully again in innings 7-9. Orel Hershiser and Dan Shulman will call the first-round series on ESPN Radio (710-AM in Los Angeles).
Here’s the first-round schedule again, in case you missed it. Start times for Games 3, 4 and 5 have yet to be announced:
Game 1 Thu Oct. 3, 5:37 p.m. Dodgers at Braves
Game 2 Fri Oct. 4, 3:07 p.m. Dodgers at Braves
Game 3 Sun Oct. 6, (TBA) Braves at Dodgers
Game 4 Mon Oct. 7*, (TBA) Braves at Dodgers
Game 5 Wed Oct. 9*, (TBA) Dodgers at Braves
Umpire Marvin Hudson (center) and Dodgers manager Don Mattingly (right) have met before. (Getty Images)
Major League Baseball assigned John Hirschbeck’s crew to the Dodgers-Atlanta Braves National League Division series and is comprised of Laz Diaz, Marvin Hudson, Bill Miller
, regular season crew chief Tim Welke and Hunter Wendelstedt.
It’s inherent to the circumstances that these supposed to be some of the best umpires in MLB. If not, they would be relaxing at home while another crew umpired the series. That said, it’s easier to cherry-pick their flaws than their successes. This also makes for better blog reading.
Welke is responsible for one of the worst safe/out calls against the Dodgers you’ll ever see.
Wendelstedt’s strike zone has drawn heavy criticism in the past. Decide for yourself: The blog Strike Zone Maps allows you to compare umpires’ strike zones on certain days (To me, Wendlestedt’s appears to be more consistent, and less forgiving for pitches outside the strike zone, than many.) Baseball Heat Maps confirms that Wendlestedt’s strike zone doesn’t reward too many balls out of the rulebook-defined strike zone.
Miller ejected Dodgers manager Don Mattingly on Aug. 1, one of his three ejections in 2013 and one that happened so quickly I didn’t realize it at the time. (For comparison’s sake, Chad Fairchild led MLB umpires with eight.) Welke, Wendlestedt and Hudson have each ejected four players or managers this season.
These are all good talking points for a slow news day, but we might not hear their names again once the games begin — if they’re doing their jobs.
Some bullet points for a Botswanan Independence Day:
Paco Rodriguez has taken the loss in two of his last four appearances. (John McCoy/Staff photographer)
After 159 games, one of the most burning questions facing the Dodgers is this: What should be done with Paco Rodriguez
and Edinson Volquez
Pablo Sandoval, who homered Wednesday in the Giants’ 6-4 win over the Dodgers, will miss the series finale with the flu. (Associated Press photo)
Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval
was a late lineup casualty Thursday because of flu symptoms, and he will miss the series finale against the Dodgers tonight at AT&T Park.
Sandoval is 6 for 13 in his career against Dodgers starting pitcher Edinson Volquez with a career .462/.462/.692 slash line. He’s batting .276 this season and clubbed his 14th home run in the Giants’ 6-4 win over the Dodgers last night. Nick Noonan, whose diving stop of a Hanley Ramirez ground ball ended Wednesday’s game, will replace Sandoval at third base.
For the second straight time, Tim Federowicz is catching Volquez. Volquez was sharp with Federowicz behind the plate last Friday in San Diego, allowing one earned run in 6 ⅓ innings. Another strong outing by Volquez will give the Dodgers a tough decision about who should take the ball in a potential playoff Game 4 after Ricky Nolasco struggled again Wednesday.
Other than Federowicz, the Dodgers’ lineup has a very playoff-ready look. The Giants have already clinched a win in the season series against the Dodgers, with 10 wins in the first 18 head-to-head games. However, the Dodgers are 36-36 this season against other National League West teams, with their final four games all coming against divisional opponents — the Giants tonight and the Colorado Rockies this weekend.
That’s a minor footnote, since the Dodgers won’t face any West teams in the playoffs. Cosmetically at least, a losing record within the division would look bad. As my father would say, it’s something to work on.
Here’s how both teams will line up:
Pitcher Clayton Kershaw was named the winner of the 2013 Roy Campanella Award, an honor voted on by the Dodger players and coaches.
The award, instituted in 2006, is given to the “most inspirational Dodger,” and one who best exemplifies the spirit and leadership of the late Hall of Fame catcher.
Kershaw is 15-9 with a major league-leading 1.88 ERA in 32 starts this season as he attempts to become the first pitcher to top the big leagues in ERA in three consecutive seasons since Greg Maddux (1993-95). The award will be presented at Dodger Stadium on Saturday night by Joni Campanella Roan, Roy’s daughter.