Will the Dodgers extend the contract of their star closer Kenley Jansen? With the extension talks stalled and the interest in Aroldis Chapman that they had, it is questionable if Jansen will be with the Dodgers next year.
Even though I still think that the part of a closer is vastly overrated, he is part of the game for decades now. I still think that with a couple of relievers platooning for that spot, you can have the same result. But okay, the closer role is a part of baseball; even I cannot deny that.
Baseball sure is a fickle game, isn’t it?
Through his first 16 starts of the 2016 season, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw was creating a whole new meaning to the word “ace”. In just 121 innings of work, the southpaw posted an 11-2 record with a 1.79 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, 145 strikeouts and just nine walks allowed.
Whenever Kershaw took the mound, the Dodgers were basically guaranteed a win. That was helpful because it was awfully tough for Los Angeles to come out on top when he wasn’t pitching. Manager Dave Roberts saw his club post a 14-2 record with his ace in control of things, but they were just 27-34 while anxiously waiting for his turn in the rotation to come around again.
After losing his last start on June 26, the Dodgers were just a half game out of a Wild Card spot, but were struggling to find a groove at 41-36, leaving them eight games behind the first-place San Francisco Giants.
The Giants got off to a hot start, it’s an even year and Kershaw had just gone on the DL – all were valid reasons to think the NL West race was over before the calendar even flipped to July. That’s why they play the game, though. LA’s starting rotation hasn’t gotten a whole lot healthier since then, but the entire roster has done nothing but come together as a group and rise to the occasion.
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Daily Matchups for 7/3/2016
The Dodger bullpen could soon be cutting off one beleaguered arm and replacing it with that of the team’s hot #4 prospect. I’m talking about Frankie Montas, the 23-year-old flame-thrower the Dodgers acquired from the Chicago White Sox last winter.
Montas seems well-recovered from his February rib bisection surgery, and looks ready to make the jump from AAA Oklahoma City when he is eligible to come off the 60-day D.L. the first week of June. In nearly two weeks split between AA Tulsa and OKC, Montas has compiled a 0.88 WHIP, struck out 9, walked 1, and has throw some high 90s heat (even hitting triple digits a few times).
It has been a small sample-size of only 4 games and 5.2 innings, but with the way Chris Hatcher and Pedro Baez have been throwing this year, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Dodgers cut one of these guys and give Montas a shot at helping revive the struggling bullpen. Hatcher should be on the chopping block first with his constant inability to get outs and his head looking totally out of order, but Baez is likely to get the bad news since he still can be optioned to the minors and Hatcher would have to be cut altogether (really, would this be so bad?).
Let me preface this article by saying that this deal will only be made if the New York Yankees are out of the playoff race near the trade deadline. As of right now, the New York Yankees are 22-24, and 6.5 games behind the Boston Red Sox. Considering how competitive the American League East is, there is a good chance the Yankees will be out of contention near the trade deadline, which means they will be sellers in the trade market.
The Yankees’ number one asset to move will be one of their three elite relief pitchers, Dellin Betances, Andrew Miller, or Aroldis Chapman. Of the three, Andrew Miller is the most likely to be dealt. Miller is under contract until 2018 (signed a four-year/$36 million contract in 2015), which is what makes him so valuable to a contending team. So far in 2016, Miller has appeared in 19 games, with a 2-0 record, 0.96 ERA, 33 strikeouts, and one walk in 18.2 innings pitched.
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The Los Angeles Dodgers have called up top prospect, Julio Urias, to pitch against the New York Mets on Friday. Urias is ranked as the #2 overall prospect my MLB.com. This left-handed pitcher is only 19 years old, which makes him the youngest pitcher to start in an MLB game since Felix Hernandez in 2005.
Urias might be 19 years old, but he pitches with the maturity of a 10-year veteran. His future for the Los Angles Dodgers and fantasy baseball owners should be very bright.
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As of right now, the Angels only have 3 starting pitchers listed on their depth chart (Jared Weaver, Hector Santiago, and Nick Tropeano). This team is falling apart and it could be time to make a drastic move. They are currently 13-18, but they are expected to continue to drop in the standings considering their team can’t stay healthy. Just to make matters worse, their farm system is widely considered to be the worst minor league system in baseball. With that said, is it time for the Angels to consider trading Mike Trout to restock their farm system and focus on building their team for the future?
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Tim Lincecum will pitch in front of upwards of 15 to 20 teams on Friday. He has been sidelined since last season due to arthroscopic hip surgery. He has been rehabbing for the last few months, and it looks as if he is finally ready to showcase his talents in front of scouts. There are reports that he is already throwing in the low 90’s, which is great news for the right-handed pitcher. As of right now, some of the reported teams who will be in attendance on Friday include the San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, Oakland A’s, Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, Texas Rangers, Houston Astros, Miami Marlins, Washington Nationals, and the Baltimore Orioles.
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With the first month of the season nearly behind us, I think we need consider that something might be wrong with Dodger third baseman, Justin Turner. In the early-going, we could go with “he’s just slumping” out of the gates; but now, 22 games in, you begin to realize you can’t keep making excuses for him. Something is not right with J.T.
To date, Turner’s slash line is way down (Now: .250/.333/.338 vs Last Season: 294/.370/.491). In 68 ABs he has not yet hit a home run, and he only has 5 RBIs. He’s also already made 2 errors at third base in only 20 games; last year, he made 9 total miscues there in 100 games.
So what’s up with J.T.? The Dodgers aren’t publicly saying anything about Turner’s health, but you can see he doesn’t look like himself at the plate or on the field…
Outfielders were showing off their cannons during this past week in Major League Baseball. Aaron Hicks recorded the fastest throw in StatCast history at 105 MPH and Yasiel Puig barehanded a ball and skipped the cut off man to throw out Trevor Story at third base. Both of these throws were elite, but now it is your turn to decide which one was the best. Click the link below to see the videos and please vote!