Off Base
Dodgers Humbled by Worst Team Ever

June 25, 2007

Losing a series to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is one thing, mortifying though it may be.

Losing a series to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays is a whole other animal – an awful, wretched, barely-functioning animal. Lame. About as embarrassing as can possibly be.

Yes, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays; the expansion Tampa Bay Devil Rays; the team that says "contraction" like no other; the organization whose primary reason for being is to trade its good players, and its bad ones, to contending clubs each summer.

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays; the team that in its nine year history has lost 100 games three times, 99 twice, and better than 90 the other four.

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays; the team of Danys Baez, Lance Carter and Mark Hendrickson. And now, the team of Dioner Navarro and Edwin Jackson; ex-Dodgers both, marginal major leaguers both, players responsible for besting the Dodgers both, though they couldn't harm a flea elsewhere.

Those Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

The indignity of losing two of three to the Devil Rays can best be evidenced this way: Edwin Jackson's 2007 record prior to beating the Dodgers stood at 0-8, with a 7.28 ERA. He hadn't won a game since 2005, when he wore the Dodger blue. Navarro's 2007 stats before homering to beat the Dodgers? Zero round trippers, 10 RBIs, and .170.

And let's recall please, that Navarro is the guy who Paul DePodesta was so eager to acquire, that he twisted arms, moved mountains, and gave the Arizona Diamondbacks $10 millions and Shawn Green to make happen, though he had Russell Martin already in the organization.

A fitting week-closing loss for the Dodgers. On the bright side, however, at least no surgeries are scheduled for tomorrow…

Talkback: Heed the call, people. Your comments are not only encouraged, but for the sake of my sanity, required…

Hero Status for Giambi: It's worth discussing, anyway. Isn't it ironic that the one player to tell the truth, and the one guy who actually tried to make it right, is the player voluntarily setting himself up for the greatest punishment? Yeah, you can say he made a "deal" all you like, but between George Mitchell, Bud Selig and Jason Giambi, Giambi is the one standing up like a man. A good man. Meanwhile, Mitchell is in the midst of career and reputation self-destruction, and Selig is busy being Selig…

Royal Pain: Too bad Oakland's trade of Milton Bradley to Kansas City fell through. Outside of poor Tampa, tell me KC isn't the perfect place for Mr. Bradley. Either way, it gives us a chance to revisit this classic line, spoken by Paul DePodesta in 2004: "I would take nine Milton Bradleys if I could get them." Alas, there is just the one…

Trade Rumors: Something strikes me about the prevailing wisdom that the Dodgers need a bat. It rolls off the collective media's tongue, that it's "a bat" the Dodgers need. Not a hitter, mind you; it's a bat the Dodgers need. I can just see a neatly pine-tarred Louisville Slugger, on the balls of its toes, defending third base at Dodger Stadium, or patrolling center field.

(Similarly, when a decision comes down "from the commissioner's office;" it's as if a ruling is being made by a fax machine and a bunch of furniture.)

Anyway, if there's even the slightest chance of getting Troy Glaus for a set of prospects headed by Andy LaRoche, the Dodgers oughta pounce on that deal in a bleeping heartbeat. Troy Glaus, with or without a crate of bats…

Media Savvy: Here's the line of the week. After Alex Rodriguez blasted another ninth inning home run, off Giants Brad Hennessey, and went 4-for-6 for the afternoon, Rotoworld.com said this: "Rodriguez also walked and stole a base. The homer made him 11-for-20 with seven homers in the ninth inning this season. That fits any definition of the word clutch (unless we're discussing cars)."

Statue for Sandy: The Koufax in bronze campaign continues. Please Vote “Yes on 32.” And tell a friend…

Remember, glove conquers all….

 

 

 

 

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