This has not been a good week to be a transplanted southern Californian. The Lakers got swept, the favored Clippers got brushed aside, the Angels have the worst offense in the American League, and oh yeah, the Dodgers lose all three games by one run in San Francisco. The Los Angeles Kings at least now have won a game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and you know you're reaching when you have to bring up the Ducks.
Meanwhile, in the Bay Area, the Giants are coming off a sweep of L.A, the Oakland A's are playing good baseball, the Warriors pulled off an upset of the Denver Nuggets, and the San Jose Sharks are up 2-0 in their first round playoff series. It's hard to talk trash, or make a snippy comeback, when no one is doing well. L.A. doesn't have a football team, of course, so we have to put up with whiny Niner fans. Angelenos can take some solace in the Raiders' lack of success, I suppose. Here's something (and I had to look it up). The L.A. Galaxy (4-2-2) and Chivas USA (3-4-2) both have better records than the San Jose Earthquakes (2-3-5)! Yeah, I know, it's soccer. Who cares?
I still insist that the San Francisco Giants are not a very good team, but somehow, they are winning. Not only are they winning, but they are doing it in dramatic fashion. Before the three-game, each by one run, sweep of the Dodgers, the Gigantes swept the Arizona Diamondbacks, and came from behind in all three games to do it. That's pretty fun to watch, that is, if you like the Giants.
The Dodgers, on the other hand, look to be a great team, but they can't score to save their lives. Clayton Kershaw is pitching well, but not winning games. Korean sensation Hyun-Jin Ryu has been great on the mound, but then there's Josh Beckett. Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford, two cogs in the Boston deal from last year, are hitting, but Dodger stalwarts Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier aren't. It's still early, and Dodgers fans at least have that, but it's not going to be early for much longer.
This just in: The Giants lost!! But so did the Dodgers. Kings won. Warriors just lost a heartbreaker in double overtime. Kinda hard to gloat about that.
Dodger P.S. (not B.S.): Someone needs to tell Don Mattingly that he doesn't have to make a double-switch every time he changes pitchers. Saturday, he made one that was questionable and another that was totally unnecessary. He gets a pass for moving Juan Uribe to first base because we didn't know it at the time, but Jerry Hairston got hurt. Just an inning later, he double-subbed again, putting Luis Cruz at first. That was just plain dumb.
There's plenty of blame left over for Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti, too. With Hairston, Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez, and Carl Crawford suffering from various ailments during the week, and Mark Ellis not able to play, Colletti refused to put Ellis on the Disabled List. There must be someone in Albuquerque that could have helped. When Ramirez was re-injured, pulling a hamstring on a bad baserunning play, Colletti at least went to the well and brought up Dee Gordon. Ellis was finally placed on the D.L. tonight, making way for injured pitcher Chris Capuano to start against the D-Backs.
Lose my number: Only the Miami Marlins (98) have scored fewer runs in the National League than the Los Angeles Dodgers (104)...Five American League teams have scored fewer runs than the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, California. The Halos have scored six more runs (129) than the lowly Houston Astros (123). The A's have scored the most runs in all of baseball (171)...The Dodgers are 5-14 against the NL West. The Giants are 15-6.
Don't blame the weatherman: We hear this every year, but this year has been worse. With snowouts in Minnesota, Cleveland, Denver, and even Kansas City, you hear people (including the supposedly intelligent media types) say that Baseball should do something about the schedule. The most common 'recommendation' is that teams like the Twins, Indians, Rockies, and Royals open their seasons in warm weather cities. That's great, but when they come home, it would still be snowing. How about this? Schedule more division games in April in those cold weather cities. That way, if games are snowed out, making them up would be easier. Example: The Rockies' April home opponents were San Diego, the Mets (who were snowed out twice), Arizona, and Atlanta. Not too bad, but the Twins faced Detroit, the Mets, the Angels, Miami, and Texas. Kinda hard to make those games up when non-division (or interleague) opponents only come to town once.