Sunday, April 13, 2008

The bats break open a can of whoop ass

Last night's game started off like many of the other loses have - with a run scored by the opposing team in the 1st. This time, Scott "Not Jerry" Hairston led off with a triple, and came around on Adrian Gonzalez' RBI double. It was that "Here we go again" feeling. Except that's where all of the damage stopped.

Rafael Furcal promptly smacked a leadoff home run, and the onslaught was on. After getting another run on a Russell Martin single, the Dodgers scored 7 more in the 3rd and 4th innings, highlighted by 2 unlikely sources: Blake DeWitt and Derek Lowe. DeWitt hit 2 doubles and Lowe drove in 3 thanks to a Chris Young error and a single. When it rains, it pours.

Andre Ethier made my praise of him in yesterday's fantasy column look pretty darn good. He smacked a 2-run homer, a double, scored 3 times, and had a sweet sliding grab in left. Matt Kemp didn't get the start, but he pinch-hit and had a home run. Perhaps most shocking is that Juan Pierre took a walk! No, seriously, he did. James Loney continued his hitting streak (11 games) by going 3-3 with 2 walks. He's locked in.

Now here's your Andruw Jones update: 0-3, but 3 runs scored and 2 walks. Baby steps I tell ya, baby steps. Here's a nice article where he swears his weight isn't the issue for why he's sucking so bad right now. He just has no rhythm. I'm guessing it might be a little of both.

Much like the Peavy-Penny game from Friday, this pitching matchup didn't really materialize the way people thought, but not because of Lowe. Young continued his shaky play against the Dodgers by giving up 6 ER in 3 IP. He also walked 4, hit poor Chin-lung Hu, and gave up 2 jacks. He seems to be brilliant against everybody else, but does nothing against LA. Lowe was fantastic at 8 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. After the 1st inning, he only allowed 2 more hits. He should be 3-0 right now if he got any sort of run support in the first 2 games, which is probably why he took matter into his own hands and drove in some runs.

Jeff Kent was given the night off, and after Friday's game, I can't blame them. This is a perfect chance for Hu to prove his worth, because it looks as if Torre will rest Kent 1-2 times a week. Smart move. I still love Kent, but 40 is 40, and keeping him fresh is the right thing to do.

The rubber game will see Chad Billingsley try to shake off his rocky beginning to '08 by going against future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux. Bills was bombed in his last start in Arizona, and has yet to even pitch 3 innings in any game. He's obviously much better than that, so hopefully he can start finding his comfort zone and pitch more like the up-and-comer that he is.

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