The Dodgers got things underway in 2009 with their first exhibition game of the season. After taking an early 2-1 lead, the Chicago Cubs were able to put up 4 runs in the 6th to take the game, 5-3.
Not that the end result matters because it doesn't. The important thing is to look at the pitchers competing for the #5 starter spot. Today it was Claudio Vargas and Ramon Troncoso, though he may not even officially be in the running. Vargas let the first 3 hitters reach base, but settled down to only give up 1 run. He then got through the 2nd unscathed to end his day. Overall, I think the Dodgers should be happy that he pitched strongly after some big early adversity.
As for Troncoso..... yikes! He was awful. In 1.1 IP, he gave up 4 runs, with 3 earned. Those 4 runs were on a grand slam to some guy named Micah Hoffpauir, who is looking to make the Cubs' roster at 1st base. Yes, I know it's only the first game, but he was pounded nonetheless.
As for the Dodgers at the plate, Tony Abreu had a nice 2 out, 2 RBI single in the 2nd for the 2-1 lead. James Loney had 2 hits.
Then there's Blake DeWitt. His first at-bat he has the bases loaded with no outs. What happens? 1-2-3 double play. I don't care if it's just Spring Training, that guy's head has to be spinning considering that his last game he played in featured him hitting into run-killing DP's. I feel bad for the kid. He thankfully did have an RBI single in the 4th.
Next up is a game against the San Francisco Giants in Scottsdale, AZ. Randy Wolf, Jeff Weaver, and Jonathan Broxton will get the ball.