Tag Archives: Josh Beckett

Opening Day Week Away Are The Dodgers Ready?

LA Dodgers Tickets

THINK BLUE

After a double-header that saw the Dodgers compete in split squad games versus the San Diego Padres and the Chicago White Sox the team is off for the long trip to Australia for next weekend’s season opening two-game series versus the Arizona Diamondbacks. With the early opener just a week away, here are some Dodgers notes.

Urias impresses: In the opening game of their doubleheader on Saturday the Dodgers started seventeen-year-old Mexican pitcher Julio Urias. The young phenom, whose drawn comparisons to Fernando Valenzuela, struck out two of the three batters he faced with his fastball reaching 97 miles per hour. The signing of Urias points to the impressive finds by the Dodgers scouting department. Los Angeles signed Urias on the same trip that yielded them Yasiel Puig. Urias will start the season in high A Rancho Cucamonga, but may be on the fast track to the major leagues.

Final Tune-up for Kershaw: Clayton Kershaw started versus the Chicago White Sox on Saturday, giving up five earned runs in just over five innings, throwing 86 pitches. The Dodgers ace had a rough spring training by his standards with a 9.20 ERA, but should be ready to start the Dodgers season opener next weekend at the Sydney Cricket Grounds. The Dodgers will arrive in Australia five games prior to the opening series to get acclimated to the time difference.

Australian Opener: Due to the time difference between Australia and Los Angeles both games between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers will technically be played next Saturday. The opener, a night game in Australia, will be air at 1:00 AM Saturday in Los Angeles. The second and final game, an afternoon game in Sydney, will take place at 7:00 PM in Los Angeles. Clayton Kershaw will face Patrick Corbin in the opener, while Hyun Jin-Ryu will face Trevor Cahill of the Diamondbacks in the second game. After returning home the Dodgers will have a full eight games before they travel to San Diego to face the Padres in the US opener.

Puig’s Slump Continues: Unlike last spring where he hit over .500 and impressed everyone, it’s been a difficult spring for second year Cuban star Yasiel Puig. With just over thirty at bats Puig is hitting just .152 with a lone home run. Many stars have tough springs and it doesn’t mean they’ll have a slow start to the regular season, but Puig’s struggles are making many speculate whether or not the tough end to the season he had in 2013 will translate into this season. Opposing teams seemingly found a way to pitch the young star towards the end of last year, busting him inside with fastballs while throwing breaking balls away. How Puig looks at the plate will be an interesting storyline as the Dodgers make the trip to Australia.

Rotation Question Marks: When the Dodgers signed Paul Maholm from the Pirates it looked like they had more than enough starting pitchers to kick off the season. With Chad Billingsley still recovering from Tommy John surgery and Josh Beckett getting hit hard in his latest spring start, while battling a thumb injury, the Dodgers may be looking to Maholm to occupy the fifth starter position when the season begins. Maholm, who looked solid in his first couple of spring outings was hit hard by the Reds on Thursday, giving up six runs on six hits in just over two innings. At this point Maholm is likely the Dodgers fifth starter, especially with Stephen Fife being sent to the minor league camp. If he struggles out of the gate the Dodgers may quickly turn to Fife.

This is one of the most anticipated seasons for Dodgers fans in a while. After the miricle run in the 2013 season fans are hoping and expecting the Dodgers to make it further in the playoffs this year. Does spring training predict the season we shall see as Opening Day is just a week away for the Dodgers.

You can purchase Dodgers Tickets for their home games at Dodger Stadium for as little as $3.00 per ticket. All tickets come with a 100% gurantee to be authentic and delivered on time with no service fees on any tickets including Dodgers Field Box, Dugout Seats, Loge and even on All You can Eat Right Field Pavilions. By Chris Michaels

Improved Playoff Bound L.A. Dodgers

Dodgers get Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Nick Punto

Dodgers get Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Nick Punto

The Los Angeles Dodgers were able to pull off the blockbuster trade of the season as they recently acquired Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Nick Punto from the Boston Red Sox, and only had to give up James Loney and four prospects. The Dodgers are currently in the number two spot in the NL West, and only 3 games behind the SF Giants as of Aug. 25. The Dodgers have been in the playoff hunt all year despite having to deal with the injuries to star player Matt Kemp who is hitting .333 with 17 home runs even with the missed time.

Now that the Dodgers have added All-Star first basemen Gonzalez and starting pitcher Beckett, they should become the immediate favorite to overtake the San Francisco Giants and win the NL West. The Dodgers now have possibly one of the best offensives in the National League and have bolstered their pitching staff that already has reigning Cy Young award winner Clayton Kershaw and solid starters Chris Capuano and Chad Billingsley. Beckett has had a disappointing season for the Sox so far this year, with a 5-11 record with an ERA above 5. Hopefully the change of scenery for Becket helps him relax and play better as it did for infielder Hanley Ramirez who the Dodgers traded for earlier in the year from the Miami Marlins.

The other players involved in the trade that the Dodgers receive, Crawford and Punto, won’t have a significant impact for the Dodgers, Crawford won’t play for the rest of the season and Punto is mainly a defensive skilled infielder. The Dodgers will unfortunately have to pay Crawford’s ridiculously high salary that includes five more seasons and a total of $102.5 million at the beginning of next season. This will hamper their ability to sign players in the future with so much money tied up in current players, but as for their hopes to reach the playoffs this year and in the future, this trade seems like the right thing to do for the Dodgers and should help them make a deep run in the playoffs this season.

The second silver lining for the Dodgers is that they play in the same division as the Padres and Rockies who are both have a winning percentage under .500. The Dodgers have a total of 12 games vs. either of those teams along with six games left vs. the Giants, which could help the Dodgers overtake the number one spot in the West if they are able to win the majority of those games. However, as of now, the Dodgers are not only one spot out of the playoffs for their Division; they are also a game and a half behind the second Wild Card team the St. Louis Cardinals, who the Dodgers get to face four more times this year. Each game in that four game series could be one of the most important games of the season as it could dictate if the Dodgers get a spot in the playoffs or not.