Friday, October 19, 2012

2012 Report Card

As the Tigers get set for the World Series, and with the Cardinals looking to join them soon, let's take a look back at the season that was for the Dodgers.

That's right, it's report card time!


Clayton Kershaw - Lead the NL in ERA for the second consecutive year at 2.53.  Finished one behind R.A. Dickey for tops in strikeouts at 229.  Might not be the top candidate to repeat his Cy Young Award, but is still the best in the bigs on any given night.

Brandon League - A little shaky when he first arrived, but gave up only one earned run over his last 21 appearances.  Took over the closer's role in September when Kenley Jansen went down and was a cool 6-6.

Josh Beckett - Somewhat quietly pitched very well upon arrival for Boston.  In seven starts, put together a 2.93 ERA and 1.33 WHIP.  A huge lack of run support only gave him two wins, but he was a completely different pitcher than the 5-11, 5.33 ERA he had on the East Coast.

Luis Cruuuuuuuuz - Came out of nowhere to be a fan favorite in the last part of the season.  Played both short and third with ease, hitting .297 with 20 doubles, 6 homers, and 40 RBIs.  Leapfrogged Dee Gordon in the pecking order for 2013.

Kenley Jansen - Took over the closer's role from Javy Guerra early in the season, and went on to gather 25 saves with a 2.35 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, and 99 K's in 65 innings.  The seven blown saves is a bit much, but was still dominating.


Matt Kemp - He's really only here because he played in 106 games thanks to a variety of injuries.  Still hit .303 with 23 homers and 69 RBIs, but wasn't the same player after a scorching April.

Andre Ethier - Put up good numbers at .284 with 20 home runs and 89 RBIs.  But, when his team needed him most in September, slumped to .245 with only seven extra-base hits in 98 at-bats.  He certainly wasn't alone, but became pretty much just a singles hitter.

Ronald Belisario - Certainly had "A" numbers if not for a horrendous July that produced a 6.60 ERA.  Other than that, had a 2.54 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 25 holds, and 69 K's in 71 innings.

Scott Elbert - Pretty much forgotten about due to another injury-plagued season.  In the 43 games he did appear in, pitched very well with a 2.20 ERA.  Plus, was one of the only lefty options most of the time until Randy Choate was acquired.

Chad Billingsly - Was looking like the "same old Billingsley" for much of the season, then flicked the switch in July and August.  In nine starts over that time period, lowered his ERA from 4.20 to 3.55.  Unfortunately, elbow problems shelved him for good at the end of August.

Aaron Harang - His numbers are just pretty good, going 10-10 with a 3.61 ERA and 1.40 WHIP.  But he also started 31 games anchoring the back end of the rotation, which the Dodgers gladly took.

Chris Capuano - There's no doubt that his first three months were better than the last three (plus one October start).  Ended June at 100 innings and a 2.69 ERA.  Ended the season at 198 and 3.72.  Still, much like Harang, more than solidified the end of the rotation, especially with injuries to Ted Lilly and Billingsley.

Jerry Hairston, Jr. - It's a shame the Dodgers lost him at the end of the season, because he definitely brought energy both starting and from the bench.  Appeared in 73 games playing multiple positions with a great glove, and hit .273.

A.J. Ellis - Like a few other players, was putting up "A" production most of the way, but really faded at the end.  A .216 September only added to the team's miseries.  Pretty solid overall, though, considering it was his first full season behind the plate.

Hanley Ramirez - Gave a pretty good spark from Miami, hitting .271 with 10 homers and 44 RBIs in 64 games in LA.  Still is capable of doing more, and needs to cut down on his strikeouts, as 132 is way too high.

Mark Ellis - Maybe only hit .258, but something needs to be said about his leadership and hard-nosed style.  Courageously battled back from a nasty leg injury in mid-May to get back on the field in July.

Nick Punto - The last of the big names to come from the Red Sox, had a .390 OBP in 22 games.  Gave some good energy at second late in the season.


Adrian Gonzalez - Could not have possibly started his Dodgers' career off better, stroking a three-run homer in his first at-bat.  Unfortunately, it took him 26 games until he hit his next, as he failed to be the big power threat at cleanup we all thought he'd be.  Does have a 15-game hitting streak to carry into next season, though.

Elian Herrera - Much like Cruz, went from unknown to everyday player for a bit.  Unlike Cruz, couldn't keep it up.  Add it all up, and he played in 67 games, hitting .251 with a homer, 17 RBIs, and 4 steals.

Juan Rivera - Was relegated to mere spot duty late in the season when Shane Victorino and Gonzalez came aboard.  Did hit 9 homers and 47 RBIs, but was pretty much an afterthought late in the year.

Javy Guerra - Started the season as the closer with five straight saves, but lost it soon thereafter with three blown ones.  Definitely figured things out at the end with a 2.60 ERA, but a 1.49 WHIP suggests he was a bit lucky, too.

Matt Guerrier - Wasn't terrible with a 3.86 ERA and 1.07 WHIP, but still hasn't filled that role of great setup man like he was signed to be two years ago.  Injuries can be blamed this year, limiting him to only 16 games.

Randy Choate - Very average when he came over from the Marlins, which is what a "C" is all about.  After putting up a great 2.49/0.99 line with Miami, proceeded to give the Dodgers a 4.05/1.65 line.  Not exactly the shutdown lefty they hoped he'd be.

Shawn Tolleson - Had his moments where he flashed good stuff, but overall was just so-so.  In 40 games, collected a 4.30 ERA and 1.33 WHIP.  Someone to keep an eye on in the future, however.

Jamey Wright - Filled many different roles out of the 'pen, appearing in 67 games with a 3.72 ERA, but a high 1.51 WHIP.  I doubt many people thought he'd last the whole season, so that's a credit to him.

Adam Kennedy - Pretty wretched through June, but a good July and August gave him hope, raising his AVG from .217 to .262.  And just like that in early September, went down for good with a strained groin.

Bobby Abreu - Cut loose by the Angels in May, was thrust right into the action with a banged up outfield.  There's no doubt he wore down after a good start, ending with a .246 AVG, but a very good .361 OBP.


Shane Victorino - Should have been a slam dunk choice for the leadoff spot after coming over from the Phillies.  Instead, struggled with a .245 AVG and .313 OBP in 53 games.  Never was able to get things going, which was a big disappointment.

Todd Coffey - One of the last signings of the offseason for depth in the bullpen.  Ended up with a 4.66 ERA in 23 games before Tommy John reared its ugly head in early July.

Joe Blanton - The Phillies pretty much gave him away, and after watching him go 2-4 with a 4.99 ERA and 1.42 WHIP, I can see why.  Never was able to stabilize a rotation that suffered a couple of big injuries

Dee Gordon - Started the year with all sorts of promise after a great finish to '11.  Then he couldn't get on base hitting leadoff, committed 18 errors, and broke a finger on a slide on July 4 which effectively put him out of the picture with Ramirez and Cruz in the fold.  Still has all sorts of speed with 32 swipes, but 10 times gunned down is a bit much.

Tony Gwynn - Much like Rivera, was lost in the shuffle once all the trades were made.  Pretty awful at the plate with a .232 AVG and a pathetic .276 OBP.  Sent packing for good in early August.

Matt Treanor - Almost not even fair to evaluate his season considering he played in only 36 games backing up A.J.  Realistically, a .175 AVG is pretty hard to defend no matter how you slice it.


Juan Uribe - I'm a firm believer that he was the worst player in baseball this year.  66 games, .191 AVG, 2 homers, 17 RBIs.  I was actually at the game he hit a homer off of Dickey in New York.  I still haven't recovered from shock.

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