Plenty of Problems on Display in Dodgers Loss

Not enough timely hits, lapses in fundamentals, questionable pitching moves. The Dodgers have it all.

The Dodgers just can’t seem to win a key baseball game right now. And while we’d all like to say it is one simple thing — like Manny Ramirez slumping or not getting an ace pitcher at the trading deadline — it is a million little cuts that are killing the Dodgers, not one big issue.

Tuesday night’s painful 10th inning loss in Colorado was the perfect example.

There’s the offense — the Dodgers continue to get runners on base but they don’t do much with them once they are aboard. Tuesday night the Dodgers were 2 for 10 with runners in scoring position — sure, they got key hits in the ninth from Manny Ramirez, but that was the exception to the rule. The Dodgers have lacked power (save for Andre Ethier) and for the last month the inability to push runs across the plate has been a problem.

Of course, it doesn’t help when you are having defensive lapses that give away free runs to the other team. The Dodgers have made a lot of fundamental, work-on-it-in Spring Training mistakes lately that have cost them games.

For example, the 10th inning Tuesday night. James McDonald walks the first batter, Ian Stewart, never a good way to start the inning. But then Carlos Gonzalez came up to sacrifice bunt him to second base — and first baseman James Loney picked up the ball and made a throw to first base where a covering Orlando Hudson couldn’t make the play.  The result, runners on first and second with nobody out — and that was pretty much the ball game.

Before that moment cost the Dodgers, there was the question of if McDonald should have even been in the game to make the pitch. And what Joe Torre was thinking

The lineup for Colorado going into the 10th inning was four left-handed batters in a row. A well-rested George Sherrill sat in the Dodgers bullpen, a guy who has held left handed batters to a .117 average against him this year, he has dominated lefties. This may be the biggest Dodger game of the season and it’s going to extra innings. Now is the time to pull out all the stops.

But Torre doesn’t go with Sherrill. He doesn’t go with Jonathon Broxton. He goes with the inconsistent McDonald. Because…

Well, who knows? There are a lot of questions around the Dodgers right now, and Torre is using his Zen-like calmness to guide the team through this rough patch.

But what did Crash Davis remind his manager — sometimes you have to scare them. And if Torre doesn’t want to vent at his team for their play and get their attention, there’s a long line of Dodger fans willing to help him out right now.

Copyright FREEL - NBC Local Media
Contact Us