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Thursday, September 1, 2011

Dodgers begin 11 game road trip with rainout makeup game

Dodgers Lineup

Dana Eveland-0-0 vs. Brad Lincoln-1-0

*I just learned that Casey Blake (A.K.A. Rusty Anchor) will be having season ending, and possibly career ending surgery next week on his arthritic neck. Ill have more on this later, but were very sad to see Blake go. he was a good player but we knew his rustiness would be too much for him this season. good luck Blake, well miss you.*

last night we got the word that Dana Eveland will be making today's start for the Dodgers against the Pirates.
rain...rain.....go away....come around another day.....oh wait, hey its not rainy over here! far from it. southern california is in the midst of an awful heat wave, while the Dodgers are playing a makeup game in Pittsburgh. so as we begin the final month of the season several things to go over.

first the pitching matchup today will be a battle of two rookies. well not really. Eveland isn't really a rookie,  as he's had service time in the major leagues with 5 different teams before the Dodgers. his MLB record is 16-22 with a 5.74 ERA. that sounds bad but most of his ML work had been in relief. his best year was with oakland in 2008 in which he made 29 starts and finished with a 9-9 record and a 4.34 ERA.  Dana Eveland is being called up because the Dodgers are scared of blowing out Nathan Eovaldi's arm like they did with De La Rosa's. they will be moving Eovaldi to the bullpen, while Eveland will at least make one start as the Dodgers go with a 6 man rotation for this week only.
Eveland has had a good season with the Isotopes. he's been there most consistent pitcher, with a 12-8 record and a 4.38 ERA. and believe me in Albuquerque thats pretty good. he's pitched for Milwaukee, Arizona, Oakland, Toronto, and a cup of coffee last year in Pittsburgh. 
Eveland is 27 years old, originally from olympia WA. he was drafted in the 2002 draft by the Brewers in the 16th round. he is a lefty, 6'1 and 235 LBS.
the Pirates will counter with rookie Brad Linocln. he's making just his second start of his career. he won his first start, and this should be a good test for the young right hander.

the red-hot Dodgers continue their charge towards first place. firing on all cylinders the Dodgers had their first winning month of the season with a 17-11 record in august. they've won 8 of their last 9, and 9 of their last 12, and are only 6 games behind the second place Giants with a 65-70 record

this will be a big test for the Dodgers, after the game is over they will fly to Atlanta for a weekend set, then to to washington for four, and end their 11 game 4 city trip with three games in San Francisco.
todays' game is a makeup of a rained out game back in may.

as you know Rosters expand today, the isotopes season doesn't end until monday, so well have to wait until then before more guys are put on the active roster, but in the meantime Eveland , Russ Mitchell, and Dee Gordon are with the team today. 
Dee Gordon makes his return from a lengthy stay on the DL. he's back in the lineup batting leadoff.
as far as our injury updates are concerned. Stacie is still on the disabled list from child berthing, but she is close to being ready to start doing games again. I would expect her back soon but on a limited basis. maybe 1 or 2 games a week. I hope so because I could use a day off. LOL

lets talk about the final month, because I have the success for the Dodgers. listen up Donnie.....

1.meltdown prevention-Mattingly must continue to prevent meltdowns before they occur. he must remove his starters before they tire. keep a close eye on the bullpen, and no bringing in Mike Macdougal.

2. no more playing of Velez. with rosters expanded there should be no reason at all to ever put Velez in the lineup. the guy is an automatic out. he should be a bench warmer the rest of the way. the only acceptable use for him going forward is as a pinch runner and even then Mattingly has far superior options on the bench. no more playing Velez. Donnie do you hear me!? no excuses.

3. no Bunting. Donnie's done less bunting this month but still, its a failed strategy. we don't need to be playing for a single run, when we have guys slugging the ball out of the park. the only time we should be bunting is when the pitcher is up, no excuses.

4. Loney and Big Rod must continue to hit. both of these guys resurgence in august is a big reason for the Dodgers recent success. I read on the True Blue LA site that the Dodgers hit 27 home runs on august compared to 11 in july. they also hit .291 with runners in scoring position in august. that trend will need to continue if the Dodgers are going to make a hail mary run at first place.

no more excuses Donnie the time is now. this is it. 27 games remaining. no turning back here. the Dodgers are 12 games back of Arizona for first place. more than likely the Dodgers will not make the playoffs. they would have to go on an incredible run and they would need some help, in order to get back in it. what I'm hoping for is that 16 wins they need in order to avoid having a losing season. if they can do that then that would be a moral victory of sorts. a .500 record sounds like a wonderful dream. us Dodger fans have been haunted by the .500 mark for quite some time now.

here are the pitching match ups for the Atlanta series.-
friday-Bills vs. Beachy-435PM
saturday-Eovaldi vs. Minor
sunday-Kershaw vs. Jurgens

im worried about the Atlanta series. this road trip will be quite a test for the Dodgers. we hope that you will continue to join us for the ride. please feel free to comment or leave a message. all questions and opinions are welcome. todays game is at 105PM on KCAL. buckle up Dodger fans, its bound to be a wild ride! 

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