July 21, 2008 |
PHOENIX -- Russell Martin hasn't seen Pablo Ozuna hit or field a baseball, but he knows this of his newest teammate: He can run. Ozuna, a 34-year-old utilityman who was released by the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday and signed by the Dodgers four days later, was used as a pinch-runner on Sunday and made an immediate impact, scoring from first on a ninth-inning double by Matt Kemp to tie the score and set the stage for a 6-5 victory over the...
April 21, 2011 |
The chants of "Jer-ry! Jer-ry!" were back at Dodger Stadium on Thursday afternoon, but this time Jerry Sands wasn't able to deliver. Twice the rookie left fielder came to bat with runners on second base, and twice the 23-year-old was unable to get a hit. Dodgers fans were instantly infatuated when Sands, called up from triple-A Albuquerque earlier than many expected because of the team's struggling offense, doubled in his first major league...
August 30, 2009 |
On the eve of his third start for the Dodgers, Charlie Haeger talked about the courage required to be a knuckleball pitcher. "It takes some guts to throw a 66-mph pitch," he said. Saturday, he showed why that's true. Haeger was savaged by the Cincinnati Reds, giving up four runs and four hits in 2 1/3 innings to blow a four-run lead. Making things palatable for Haeger was that the Dodgers claimed an 11-4 win at Great American Ball Park and that Manager Joe Torre said Haeger would remain in the rotation.
June 10, 2011 |
When Don Mattingly sent Matt Kemp to pinch-hit in the ninth inning Friday night, he wasn't thinking as much about the outcome of the game as he was of the center fielder's consecutive-games streak. "I knew it was important to him," Mattingly said. But Kemp, who was a last-minute scratch from the lineup because of a tight left hamstring, soon shifted the focus from his streak of 269 consecutive games played — tops among active major league players — to whether the Dodgers could win a game they trailed by six runs.
February 22, 2010 |
When word trickled out of Nicaragua in November that Vicente Padilla was shot, his agent said the bullet only "grazed" his leg. Some graze that was. Pointing to a spot high on his right thigh, Padilla said, "It went in here." Touching the back of his leg, he continued, "And it went out the other side." Padilla said the wound healed in about two weeks. Padilla laughed several times as he recounted the incident, in which the pitcher was accidentally shot by a friend who was trying to fix his gun for him at a shooting range.
September 4, 2011 |
Reporting from Atlanta -- Hong-Chih Kuo said baseball is fun for him again — and so long as his elbow holds up, the former All-Star reliever intends to pitch again next season. "I'll try to pitch," Kuo said. This wasn't always a given. In a season in which he landed on the disabled list because of an anxiety disorder and performed erratically, there were times when Kuo was noncommittal about his future. Kuo, whose earned-run average was 12.46 as recently as July 31, has looked like the Kuo of old in recent weeks.
April 7, 2010 |
Chad Billingsley said he felt he fixed the problems with his mechanics in the six weeks the Dodgers spent in Arizona for spring training. But he said that a final tuneup in Los Angeles last week is what got his head right. Billingsley, who will make his first start of the season in the Dodgers' series finale in Pittsburgh on Thursday, said that being roughed up by the Angels in the Freeway Series reinforced a message that Manager Joe Torre has been trying to deliver to him. "Pitchers, we have the tendency to give hitters too much credit," Billingsley said.
April 10, 2010 |
Andre Ethier had the kind of at-bat that should have added to his growing legend as a late-game hero, hobbling off the Dodgers' bench for the first time in three days on a swollen left ankle to turn a one-run deficit into a one-run lead. But setup man George Sherrill was later to learn that he was only being set up for his latest on-the-mound meltdown by Ethier's two-run, pinch-hit home run in the eighth inning. Inheriting a man on first base and a lead that was doubled on a home run by Matt Kemp, Sherrill let the Florida Marlins score three runs to complete a 7-6 comeback and achieve a two-game winning streak.
July 18, 2010 |
Jonathan Broxton wouldn't make any excuses, but his manager had no such reservations. "We asked too much out of Brox," Joe Torre said. What the Dodgers asked their closer to do Sunday was to get five outs and preserve what remained of what was once a four-run lead against the St. Louis Cardinals. He couldn't. He gave up a run-scoring single to Randy Winn in the eighth inning. He gave up a score-tying run on a single to Allen Craig in the ninth inning.