Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke had a part in eight double plays this season, which led all major-league pitchers. (Getty Images)
We’ll begin today’s analysis with some of the basic fielding numbers for Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke, who is looking for his first career Gold Glove Award this season. He made one error in 59 chances, a .983 fielding percentage. The error (on an attempted pickoff throw to first base) did not factor in the outcome of the game, an 8-4 Dodgers win in Chicago.
Greinke finished seventh in the National League with 30 assists, one fewer than teammate Clayton Kershaw. Greinke was credited with starting five double plays this season — second in the National League — and finishing three. No other pitcher in MLB had a hand in more double plays this season. Why was Greinke involved in so many fielding plays this season? We’ll get to that in a minute.
Kershaw led all National League pitchers in defensive runs saved this season (7) and started two double plays. Maybe that’ll be enough to make up for the two throwing errors that led to his subpar .951 fielding percentage.
Those errors didn’t matter much in the grand scheme of things. Maybe the most impressive line in Kershaw’s 2014 fielding resume is this: He didn’t allow an unearned run until August 27 — 156 &frac13 innings into the season — and that was on a misplay in the outfield by Scott Van Slyke. Kershaw allowed only two unearned runs in September, and that was on one play. You must remember this: Continue reading →
Update (4 p.m.): The Padres have announced White as their new senior advisor to the general manager/pro scouting director. In his role with the Padres, White will be responsible for overseeing all of the organization’s professional scouting efforts and player acquisition at the Major and minor league level, as well as advising the general manager.
“Logan has a tremendous track record in the game,” Padres general manager A.J. Preller said in a statement. “The knowledge and experience he brings to our organization strengthens our entire baseball operations staff.”
Corey Seager is the Dodgers’ lone representative on the Arizona Fall League’s “Fall Stars” roster. Seager, who’s slashing .255/.345/.412 for the Glendale Desert Dogs, will represent the West team.
The game will be played this Saturday (Nov. 1) at 5 p.m. PT at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale, Arizona. MLB Network will televise the game, which will also be streamed online at MLB.com.
Scouting and farm directors from every Major League organization, in consultation with Arizona Fall League Director Steve Cobb and his baseball personnel staff, selected the players for the annual showcase that pits top prospects from the Fall League’s East Division and West Division clubs.
Each Major League organization is offered the opportunity to be represented by at least one player.
Mark Topkin, the Tampa Bay Times’ beat writer, has the story on the stunning departure of Joe Maddon today. Read it for yourself, but the possibility of Maddon managing the Dodgers only seems stronger by the end of the piece.
As we noted earlier, Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said that Don Mattingly “will be our manager next season.” It was a statement Friedman had to make, if only to put Matingly at ease. But if Mattingly had a short leash for failure before Maddon opted out of his contract, where does that leave him now?
Moreover, what if something changes? Say Friedman (and/or the new general manager, whoever he is) decides he wants to fire Mattingly and hire Maddon. Can they possibly do so without giving the appearance of impropriety?
Former Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon worked with current Dodgers executives Andrew Friedman (left) and Gerry Hunsicker (center) in Tampa Bay. (Associated Press photo)
Joe Maddon unexpectedly opted out of his contract with the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday morning, raising speculation that new Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman would hire his former manager to replace Don Mattingly in Los Angeles.
Not so, says Friedman.
“As I said last week, Joe and I enjoyed a tremendous relationship working together in Tampa Bay and I wish him nothing but the best wherever his next stop will be,” Friedman said in a statement released by the team. “However, nothing has changed on our end. Don Mattingly will be our manager next season and hopefully for a long time to come.” Continue reading →
Dodgers head athletic trainer Stan Conte (right) checks on Hyun-Jin Ryu after the pitcher strained a muscle in his right buttock during an August game in Atlanta. (Associated Press photo)
Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu said at a press conference in South Korea Wednesday that he will begin his off-season training earlier in hopes of preventing injuries.
Ryu spent time on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation in May, missing three weeks. The 255-pound left hander missed three weeks at the end of the season when the injury flared up again. In mid-August, he went on the DL with a muscle strain in his right buttock.
“I’ve had three injuries this year, but at least I didn’t miss as much time as some other players did,” Ryu said, according to the Korea Times. “I don’t want to go through the same fate next season. I think I am going to have to take care of my body better in the winter. I will start my offseason training earlier than before and focus on preventing injuries.”
Whether quitting smoking is part of his plan remains to be seen.
Clayton Kershaw is a finalist for a National League Gold Glove Award, which he won for the only time in 2011. (Associated Press photo)
Dodger pitchers Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and third baseman Juan Uribe are finalists for National League Gold Glove awards.
The quartet was announced Thursday by Rawlings, the equipment maker which sponsors the award. Winners will be revealed on ESPN2 Nov. 4. The winners have already been chosen; the three finalists at each position are really the top three vote-getters.
We’ll have a bit more on each player’s credentials in a bit. Here’s the full list of NL Gold Glove Award finalists: Continue reading →
Dodgers prospect Darnell Sweeney, who fell a triple short of the cycle Wednesday in the Arizona Fall League, hit a game-winning single to beat the Angels in a Freeway Series game in March. (John McCoy / Staff photographer)
Darnell Sweeney hit two doubles, a home run and a single in five at-bats Wednesday for the Glendale Desert Dogs of the Arizona Fall League.
The Dodgers prospect needed a triple in his final at-bat in the eighth inning to complete a rare cycle. Instead he doubled off Braves prospect Ryne Harper, settling for a 4-for-5, four-RBI performance in the Desert Dogs’ 10-1 win over Peoria.
Sweeney, a 13th-round draft pick by the Dodgers in 2012, spent all of 2014 at Double-A Chattanooga. The versatile 23-year-old posted a .288/.387/.463 slash line and went 15 for 31 in stolen-base attempts. His batting average was above .300 before a late tailspin, and he led the Southern League in walks.
A switch hitter, Sweeney is batting .387 in 10 AFL games. He’s played second base, shortstop and center field.
“He has a chance to be a good player,” Sweeney’s Double-A manager, Razor Shines, said in a September interview. “The strong suit is that he can play all over and he can hit. He hits the ball hard.”