Dodgers buy a stake in KLAC (570-AM), renew radio broadcast rights.

The Dodgers and iHeartMedia announced a multi-year agreement Tuesday renewing KLAC’s (570-AM) rights to Dodgers regular season games, select spring training games and potential postseason games. 

In addition, the new partnership will include an equity position in the station for the Dodgers owners as well as the opportunity for collaborative programming.

“We are looking forward to expanding KLAC’s content in this new partnership for our passionate and loyal fan base,” Dodgers president Stan Kasten said in a statement released by the team. “We will be teaming up with the fantastic creative team at iHeartMedia on a number of projects and initiatives, to enhance our fans engagement.  And what better team to tell the story than from broadcast talent of Vin (Scully), Rick (Monday) and Charley (Steiner).”

The agreement is subject to Major League Baseball approval.

Here’s more from the Dodgers’ press release:

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MLB announces start times for Games 1 and 2 of NLDS.

MLB has announced the start times for the first two games of the National League Division Series at Dodger Stadium.

Game 1 will be at 3:37 p.m. Friday, televised on Fox Sports 1. Game 2 will be at 6:37 p.m. Saturday, televised on MLB Network.

Neither game will be blacked out in SportsNet LA markets.

The start times for Games 3, 4 and 5 have yet to be announced.

Update (3:27 p.m.) The Dodgers announced that Vin Scully will call the first three and last three innings of each playoff game, home and away. Charley Steiner and Rick Monday will call the middle three innings on radio, the same arrangement as the 2013 postseason.

Bob Costas, Harold Reynolds, Tom Verducci and Ken Rosenthal are on the call for Game 2.

Vin Scully has a Babe Ruth story. Yes, they met once.

It’s not often that we get to see Chris Perez warm up on the mound anymore. He’s only pitched twice in September, so get a good look at this video.

As you watch closely, Vin Scully tells a story about meeting someone when he was 13 years old. Some lady named … Ruth. Baby Ruth.

Dodgers bringing six broadcasters on seven-game road trip.

The Dodgers announced that Nomar Garciaparra will join Orel Hershiser, Charley Steiner and Alanna Rizzo in the SportsNet LA television booth during a seven-game road trip beginning today in Denver.

Kevin Kennedy will call the game alongside Rick Monday on KLAC (570-AM). The Dodgers first used these television/radio pairings during the recent homestand, when Vin Scully missed two games due to a chest cold.

Daily Distractions: Dodgers don’t make good rangers, among other problems in the field.

Hanley Ramirez

Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez committed one of two Dodger errors in a 3-2 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies Tuesday night. (Keith Birmingham/Staff photographer)

Dodgers left fielder Carl Crawford wasn’t sure he could get to Carlos Ruiz‘s fly ball in the 10th inning Tuesday. There are two problems with this.

One, Crawford was able to get to the ball. (Check out the clip.) Ultimately he failed to recognize this and call off his shortstop, Hanley Ramirez.

Two, the reason Crawford didn’t know that he could get to the ball is because he has poor range for a left fielder. He basically admitted it afterwards, saying, “I didn’t think it was clearly my ball. That’s a long run for me.”

So if we’re really going to analyze the fielding woes that doomed the Dodgers in their 3-2 loss to Philadelphia last night, it’s not as simple as logging the number of errors (for the record, they have made errors in five straight games, a total of eight in that span). The best defensive metrics are never that simple.

What do the complicated metrics say?

FanGraphs’ Range Runs statistic measures the number of runs above or below average a fielder is, as determined by how the fielder is able to get to balls hit in his vicinity. Range Runs says that the Dodgers have four above-average fielders at their positions (among regulars): Yasiel Puig in right field (+2.3 runs), Juan Uribe at third (+2.2), Andre Ethier in center (+1.4) and even Crawford in left — albeit barely (+0.3).

Ethier has been below average this season when he shifts to right field (-0.5), as is Dee Gordon at second base (-0.2), Adrian Gonzalez at first base (-0.6), Hanley Ramirez at shortstop (-0.8) and Matt Kemp in center, by quite a bit (-2.0).

Translating that 2 into layman’s terms: The average center fielder has enough range to prevent two more runs from scoring than Kemp, and we’re less than a month into the season. That might be fine, except that Ethier and Crawford don’t offer much range in left and right, respectively. With Kemp in center, no wonder Puig acts like the only fielder capable of overcoming the limited range of literally every player around him — he is.

Maybe that’s why Kemp feels compelled to call off Puig on fly balls hit within 10 feet of him, which he did at one point Monday night.

A team’s fielding percentage tends to fluctuate with mistakes, like the occasional poor throw. Even Mark Ellis makes an occasional poor throw. Puig, for what it’s worth, hasn’t been charged with an error this season.

Range, however, is more fixed. So long as the body parts responsible for running are healthy — Crawford, Kemp, Ethier, Ramirez, Gonzalez and Gordon fall in this category — it’s unfair to expect significant improvement in their range. If anything, ordinary wear and tear might restrict their range further as the season goes on.

So it’s fairly safe to say the Dodgers have a range problem. Monday, Crawford complicated things by underestimating even his own range and not calling off Ramirez on a ball that should have been his.

It was a tough play to watch, and there will probably be more of those in the future.

Some bullet points for a Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day:
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