Daily Distractions: Dr. Frank Jobe recognized in Cooperstown; Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier help Cleveland.

Thomas Tull

“42” producer Thomas Tull, right, with Cal Ripken. (baseballhall.org)

The National Baseball Hall of Fame won’t induct any new members this year, but its annual Awards Presentation will have a Dodgers theme.

On July 27 in Cooperstown, the Museum will pay tribute to Legendary Pictures founder and CEO Thomas Tull and his soon-to-be-released film “42”, which documents and pays homage to Brooklyn Dodgers great Jackie Robinson. The film will be released nationwide on Friday, April 12, just in advance of baseball’s Jackie Robinson Day on April 15.

The Museum will also recognize former Dodgers team physician Frank Jobe for the development of Tommy John surgery, a now-common elbow ligament replacement procedure. John, the former Dodgers pitcher who won 288 games in his 26-year major league career, will join Dr. Jobe for the special recognition.

I attended a special screening of “42” last week and it seemed to be well-received by both the media and the Dodgers players and execs in attendance. I’m guessing it won’t be seen as a flop three months after its release.

Some bullet points for a Friday morning:

Continue reading “Daily Distractions: Dr. Frank Jobe recognized in Cooperstown; Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier help Cleveland.” »

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Dodgers at the WBC update: Hanley Ramirez goes yard, Kenley Jansen goes to San Francisco.

Hanley Ramirez delivered the first of three runs for the Dominican Republic in its 3-1 win over the United States on Thursday, a home run in the second inning off R.A. Dickey that traveled 451 feet and was the fourth-longest ball ever hit at Marlins Park.

It was the only run allowed by Dickey in five innings, and Dominican starter Samuel Deduno was just as stifling in his four innings. The game was tied 1-1 in the ninth inning when Atlanta Braves closer Craig Kimbrel allowed two runs on back-to-back RBI singles by Erick Aybar and Jose Reyes.

Ramirez served as the DH in the game. Reyes played shortstop.

Continue reading “Dodgers at the WBC update: Hanley Ramirez goes yard, Kenley Jansen goes to San Francisco.” »

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Reports: Kenley Jansen likely to play in WBC

Kenley JansenDodgers reliever Kenley Jansen told reporters Thursday he’s “95 percent sure” that he will join The Netherlands in the semifinals of the World Baseball Classic. Jansen is a native of the Central American island of Curacao, a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The Netherlands will play the winner of Pool 2 — either the U.S., Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic — on March 18 in San Francisco. Jansen will reportedly remain with the Dodgers until Sunday.

Jansen represented The Netherlands in the 2009 WBC, when he was still a catcher. He went 1 for 13 in six WBC games.

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Punto, Italy eliminated from World Baseball Classic.

That headline came later than expected, which is progress enough for a country that’s produced one major leaguer in the last half-century.

Italy lost 4-3 to Puerto Rico in Miami on Wednesday night, ending its Cinderella run in the World Baseball Championship. Dodgers infielder Nick Punto went 1 for 4 and scored Italy’s second run in a three-run fifth inning for Italy, which upset both Mexico and Canada in pool play.

Down 3-0, Puerto Rico pounced on Italy’s bullpen — just as the Dominican Republic did a night earlier — to win the game in comeback fashion.

Punto is expected back in Arizona to resume his spring training with the Dodgers. He sent the following tweet Wednesday night:

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Dodgers WBC update: Ramirez, Dominican Republic top Punto, Italy.

Hanley Ramirez

Italy, the Cinderella team of the World Baseball Classic, almost did it again.

The Dominican Republic trailed Italy 4-0 in the second-round opener for both teams Tuesday, before clawing back to win 5-4 in Miami. Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez‘s sacrifice fly tied the game 4-4 in the seventh inning and Nelson Cruz‘s RBI single sealed the Italians’ fate. Ramirez finished 1 for 2 with a walk and a single in four plate appearances.

Ramirez played the entire game at third base, with Jose Reyes playing shortstop and Erick Aybar DHing.

Dodgers utilityman Nick Punto reached base in three out of his four plate appearances, scoring one run and driving in another.

Ronald Belisario, whose Venezuelan team was eliminated from the tournament over the weekend, arrived in the Dodgers’ clubhouse Tuesday afternoon.

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