By Cary Osborne
You can’t help but be encouraged by some of the stuff going on at the lower levels in the Dodger organization — teams in playoff position, with power at the plate (including a home run record) and dominance on the mound (including a no-hitter). Obviously, hope is tempered by the fact that these guys have a long way to go, but there are some promising signs.
By Yvonne Carrasco
On Thursday, while the Dodgers enjoyed their off day, the official Twitter account of the Dodgers’ public relations staff, @DodgersPR, published a photo of Hall of Fame broadcaster Jaime Jarrín and legendary Mexican comic and actor Mario Moreno, made famous as Cantinflas. A biopic on Cantinflas is limited release beginning today. out in theatres soon.
The photo caught the eye of Spanish-language newspaper Hoy, and editor Eduard Cauich reached Jarrín on Thursday for some background. The story will run Monday in Hoy.
For fans interested in the background, here is what Cauich found out and what was told in the aforementioned Hoy note:
This photo dates back to 1961, on a day when Cantinflas was recognized by the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors. Jarrín is interviewing him and at the time was 25.
“Back then I was news director at KWKW, and Mario Moreno was being honored,” said Jarrin.”I was a very thin man. I started to gain weight in my 40s. There, I’m about 130 pounds.
“I first met Cantinflas through his family doctor, Dr. Rodriguez, who was also doctor to Julio Iglesias (renowned Spanish singer, father to pop star Enrique Iglesias). He invited me to a couple of functions in his home where Cantinflas was present. Cantinflas was a very kind person, and we became good friends.
“One day I invited him into the (Dodgers’ Spanish radio) booth, and on that day Fernando Valenzuela was playing. I asked him to do the a little of the play-by-play when Valenzuela was batting and he did.”
By Cary Osborne
In case you missed it, there were two Dodger organization no-hitters on Thursday. In the afternoon, four pitchers combined on a no-hitter for the Arizona Rookie League Dodgers and in the evening, Andres Santiago tossed a no-hitter for the Double-A Chattanooga Lookouts in a 1-0 victory over the Tennessee Smokies in Chattanooga.
It was the first no-hitter for a Dodger minor leaguer as a Lookout and first no-hitter for Chattanooga since 1996 (Travis Buckley).
The 24-year-old right-hander struck out 12 and took a perfect game into the eighth inning, but issued a walk to Smokie Christian Villanueva.
“This is something that I’m going to remember forever. August 28, 2014 — no-hitter,” Santiago told Milb.com. “It’s something that you dream about, and it’s hard to get it, but when you get it, it’s like an unbelievable feeling.”
Santiago lasted just 1 1/3 innings on Aug. 17, surrendering seven earned runs. In his two starts since, he’s allowed five hits, three walks and one earned run in 16 innings. On the season he has a 4.47 ERA and 1.43 WHIP in 129 innings. In the second half of the season (71 1/3 innings), he has a 3.15 ERA and 1.32 WHIP.
Chris O’Brien’s sixth homer of the season in the second inning gave Chattanooga and Santiago the run they needed.
Photo by Jon SooHoo/©Los Angeles Dodgers, LLC 2014
By Jon Weisman
Arano joins former Loons teammate Jesmuel Valentin as a component of the trade.
A 19-year-old righty from Mexico, Arano had a 4.08 ERA in 86 innings for Great Lakes with 83 strikeouts against 108 baserunners.
By Cary Osborne
The Arizona Rookie League Dodgers are postseason-bound, thanks to a combined no-hitter on Thursday.
Four pitchers combined on the the first no-hitter in AZL Dodgers history: Jairo Pacheco (six innings, two walks, eight strikeouts), Kam Uter (one inning, one walk), Yeuri Gonzalez (2/3 innings, one strikeout) and Harlan Richter (1 1/3 innings, one walk, one strikeout).
The AZL Dodgers beat the AZL Brewers 10-0 in the game, which also featured 2014 second-round pick Alex Verdugo’s third home run of the season.
The AZL Dodgers will finish the regular season in second place overall in the Central Division. Each of the league’s three divisions send two representatives to the postseason, with each half’s first-place finisher getting a spot. If the first-half and second-half division finisher are the same, the team in the division with the next best overall record goes to the postseason. (The AZL Indians finished in first place in both halves.)
The AZL Dodgers will begin the playoffs on Saturday. The team won the league championship in 2011.
By Cary Osborne
Last night, Kenley Jansen hit the century mark with career saves, becoming the sixth Dodger in franchise history to reach 100 saves in a Dodger uniform. It got us thinking about Jansen and other Dodgers climbing the club’s all-time lists.
- Jansen ranks sixth all-time in Dodger history in saves. He is one behind Ron Perranoski and should settle in at fifth all-time by the time the season ends. Jim Brewer is in fourth place at 125. Eric Gagne is the all-time saves leader with 161.
- Only three Dodgers have cracked the 40-save mark in a single season: Eric Gagne (2003: 55, 2002: 52, 2004: 45), Todd Worrell (1996: 44) and Jeff Shaw (2001: 43).
- Clayton Kershaw has 1,400 career strikeouts, which puts him at sixth place in Los Angeles Dodgers history. Orel Hershiser is in fifth at 1,456. Kershaw is seventh in franchise history.
- Kershaw is two wins away from tying Johnny Podres for 10th all-time in L.A. history with 95 wins.
- Kershaw has lowered his career ERA from 2.60 coming into this season to 2.50. That’s first in L.A. history. Sandy Koufax is second at 2.64. Kershaw is still third in franchise history behind Jeff Pfeffer (Brooklyn 1913-1921: 2.31) and Nap Rucker (Brooklyn 1907-1916: 2.42).
- After last night’s outing, Kershaw’s season ERA is 1.73 — or to be more precise, 1.7293. In 1966, Koufax had a 1.7275 ERA, which ranks third in franchise history. Rube Marquard (1.58, 1916) and Ned Garvin (1.68, 1904) are at the top of that list.
- Matt Kemp’s 173 career home runs put him fifth in L.A. history. He passed Shawn Green (162), Raul Mondesi (163) and Pedro Guerrero (171) this season. Mike Piazza occupies fourth place with 177. Kemp is ninth in franchise history behind Piazza.
- Kemp’s 170 stolen bases rank fifth in L.A. history. Brett Butler is next on the list at 179.
- Kemp cracked the L.A. top 10 in hits this season and has 1,154, which puts him at 10th place, just above Dusty Baker’s 1,144.
- Kemp is at 622 career RBI, right behind Andre Ethier and Bill Russell, who are tied for fifth with 627.
- Ethier’s 1,231 hits put him in seventh place in L.A. history. He passed Davey Lopes (1,204) and Steve Sax (1,218) this season.
By Jon Weisman
Justin Turner …
- has become the 13th-best hitter in the National League this year with at least 250 plate appearances in weighted runs created (wRC+).
- has an on-base percentage of .453, slugging percentage of .532 and OPS of .985 in 179 plate appearances since May 22.
- leads the Major Leagues in batting average (.372) since May 22.
- leads the Major Leagues in batting average with runners in scoring position for all of 2014 (.420).
An incredibly valuable player off the bench for the Dodgers this year.
Previously on Dodger Insider: The top Dodger bench players of the 21st century
By Jon Weisman
Clayton Kershaw returned to the scene of the biggest crime of his 2014 season and .. walked the first batter he faced on four pitches.
In the third inning, with one out, he pitched with the bases loaded for the first time all year.
In the fourth, he allowed a double and a single (with an error) to the first two batters he faced, leading to the first unearned run he’s allowed in the regular season since September 13.
In the fifth, the leadoff hitter hit a triple, the first triple off Kershaw since the May 17 disaster start.
But in the end, Kershaw was Kershaw.
Retiring 12 of the final 13 hitters he faced and striking out seven of them, Kershaw carried the Dodgers to a 3-1 victory at Arizona.
His 2014 ERA is now 1.73, its lowest mark since his second start of the season. He struck out 10 batters, giving him three consecutive games with at least 10 strikeouts for the first time since June 20-July 2, 2011.
His record since May 17: 139 innings, 85 hits, 20 walks, 166 strikeouts, 1.29 ERA.
In his past 750 innings, the 26-year-old left-hander has a 1.99 ERA.
Kenley Jansen struck out two in a perfect ninth for his 100th career save.
The down note for the Dodgers, who took the lead for good on Matt Kemp’s two-run double in the third inning, was an ankle injury to Scott Van Slyke. Van Slyke, who continued to destroy Arizona starter Wade Miley with a third-inning homer, his fourth (to go with three doubles) in 11 at-bats against the lefty this year, rolled his right ankle while making the aforementioned error, on a ricochet of the ball off Yasiel Puig, and had to leave the game. He is day to day.
Ear-Bending Cellmate: …and when there was no meat, we ate fowl and when there was no fowl, we ate crawdad and when there was no crawdad to be found, we ate sand.
H.I.: You ate what?
Ear-Bending Cellmate: We ate sand.
H.I.: You ate SAND?
Ear-Bending Cellmate: That’s right.
By Jon Weisman
It’s true. These have been some rocky years for Clayton Kershaw at Arizona’s Chase Field: a five-game, three-year losing streak, the nadir being his five-out, seven-run outing May 17.
The losses haven’t all been equal. On September 11, 2012, he allowed an unearned run in seven innings and lost, 1-0. On April 12, 2013, he allowed one earned run in his first seven innings, then left with the bases loaded in the eighth and watched Shawn Tolleson, in his only game of 2013 and his last as a Dodger, walk home two runs in a 3-0 defeat.
Overall, Kershaw has had four quality starts out of nine in Arizona, plus a fifth in which he pitched shutout ball for 5 2/3 innings in a 14-1 Dodger victory. He hasn’t had his primo consistency there, but it’s hardly a guaranteed chamber of horrors.
Kershaw, of course, has been nearly untouchable since that May 17 debacle: 131 innings, 104 baserunners, 156 strikeouts, 1.37 ERA, .470 opponents’ OPS. One little piece of trivia: Kershaw, who allowed three triples in the second inning May 17, hasn’t allowed a triple since.
By Cary Osborne
Chattanooga’s Corey Seager, Darnell Sweeney, Scott Schebler and Mike Thomas were selected to play in the top-prospect heavy Arizona Fall League, for the Glendale Desert Dogs.
Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier and Joc Pederson are a few names who have played in the AFL in the past. According to Ken Gurnick at MLB.com, three more Dodger prospects could be added to the team.
As far as the quartet that’s already bound for Arizona, we’ll get into their seasons in the Chattanooga section of this report. There’s just one week left in the regular season for minor league baseball. Chattanooga and Rancho Cucamonga still have shots at making the postseason. And we’re on the verge of Major League rosters expanding to 40 men on September 1. Those, and some history, are the themes for this week’s report. (more…)