Bill Plaschke and others are very adept at spending, and giving away, other people's money. Where were you when the new management bought the Dodgers? Oh, that's right, you were standing and cheering, Where were you when the current ownership started spending big money to bring in big-name players? Oh, that's right, you were standing and cheering. And now that the time has come to pay the bills, all that we hear from you now is the weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth.
So, at long last, Time Warner Cable is trying to win over Dodgers fans by discounting its rate to other cable companies by 30%. Then they have the nerve to dangle "the last days of Vin Scully" as bait. Shame. Shame. Shame. Now, we find out it's only for one year, after which a renegotiation is required. What the heck is that? Probably zero chance DirecTV, Cox or others would agree. Why would they?
Three years of this nonsense, and TWC still doesn't get it. You made a bad deal, guys. Live with it!
Palos Verdes Estates
So, I am supposed to be excited that TWC is going to lower the price of the Dodgers to other providers? Right? Now myself, and others who could care less about the Dodgers will be forced to add another $3.50 a month to get the Dodgers, a team I could care less about? This is a joke, right? It's time to force all cable/satellite providers allow us to pick our own channels and pay for what we want. This is nothing more than corporate welfare.
When I see another added fee to my bill for local sports coverage, I will do it, too! I'm an Angels fan. Forcing me to pay for the Dodgers is criminal. I'm a sports fan, but this is out of control. Where are my scissors?
I check the Times' Sports section daily, hoping to find that money-hungry Dodgers management has pulled off some miracle play to bring the TV blackout to an end. Instead, I find credible observations that the rotation is unraveling and predictions that Clayton Kershaw may be caught in the same ill wind that pushed Zack Greinke out the door. Somehow, I see it as divine retribution. You reap what you sow.
The trainer's room
The Dodgers trying to get to the World Series with their broken-down pitching staff is like trying to drive around the world in a broken-down 1957 Ford Edsel.
Rancho Palos Verdes
Headline: "Mike Bolsinger suffers abdominal injury minutes after being handed No. 5 starting spot."
"It's bad timing," Bolsinger said. "Especially right now."
Yogi couldn't have said it better.
It appears that the analytics-driven whiz kids in the Dodgers front office don't have a "PTI" metric in their player evaluation calculus: "Prone To Injury."
A top-deck ticket for the Dodgers-
Bring your kid to work
Adam LaRoche walks out on $13 million for eight months of work because he's been asked by his boss to limit the number of days he brings his son to the clubhouse, as opposed to being told not to bring him at all, and management is the problem? Trust, a delicate concept, works only when both sides are fully committed. And like it or not, a big part of any commitment is compromise. Taking his ball and going home only shows that LaRoche was fully committed to himself, not his team.
Why does a father have the need to take his teenage son to work with him every day, even if the workplace is a major league park? What is the story about the son Drake LaRoche? Also, why would someone, anyone, walk away from $13 million? I mean, if the boy needs child care, the father could spend a thousand a week, for the entirety of the baseball season, and still end up with lots of money. And, the child care could be tax deductible.
Come on, guys, what's the real story?
Gary M. Barnbaum
With the powers that be suggesting to Adam LaRoche that he should "dial back" his son's presence in the clubhouse, will someone at UCLA suggest to Steve Alford that he "dial back" Bryce Alford's presence on the court? Or are they afraid that Steve might quit?
Raymond Moore of Indian Wells has been proven a fool. Even a hermit under a rock would have absorbed sufficiently the changes of the state of modern social sentiments to know such comments, by a man in a position of authority, are equal to an ignoramus punching a self-destruct button. Was his brain momentarily indisposed, did his judgment take flight on a drone? He doesn't seem to understand there have been massive changes in the texture of the world he treads upon, which render viability untenable in it for him and any other dinosaur. Apparently he never saw the comet falling from the sky that utterly destroyed his world and every one of his persuasion.
Michael E. White
One factor that is glossed over in the equal-pay discussion: In Grand Slam tournaments men play best-of-five, a more grueling test befitting a major. Women play the same best-of-three as in any other tournament. It's therefore not a more grueling test, and does not warrant being called a major. So, since they are paid the same as men, is that equitable? But it isn't the equal pay issue that is important: It's that tennis fans want best-of-five for women in majors.
Bruce N. Miller
Playa del Rey
The end is near
When my husband and I learned that Kobe was retiring, there was little question, despite the high price of tickets, that we would attend a game so that we could watch him play for one last time. We chose March 18 against Phoenix. Friday morning, I checked Twitter and was thrilled with the tweet that said that there was a "70% chance that Kobe would play"! We headed down to Staples very excited that we would see Kobe play. By the time we got downtown, it was announced that he wouldn't be playing. Gloom. Heading to our seats, I felt even worse for a fan wearing a Lower Merion High jersey. Well, Kobe did come out to sit on the bench, to wild cheers. But he never did wave to us.
I don't want Kobe to play if he's hurting. (Why he can overcome his pain for fans in other cities who have been booing him for decades, I don't quite understand.) But most of us are not season-ticket holders who will have other opportunities to watch him play, so couldn't he give us a wave?
Byron Scott on Kobe Bryant: "I don't want him to get some type of permanent damage to the shoulder where in 10 years they need to do reconstruction or do something crazy."
Bryant is being paid $300,000 a game whether he plays or not, to say nothing of how badly. If he doesn't want to accept some risk, he ought to give back the reward. But, of course, he holds onto the money as tightly as he has always held onto the ball.
Other side of the hall
Memo to Steve "Maniac" Ballmer: This current Clippers team will never, ever win an NBA championship as long as Glenn "Doc" Rivers is GM. The ghost of Elgin Baylor is haunting close by.
The Clippers actually have a better chance than most of going to the NBA Finals. With their healthy frequent flyer miles and oh-so-fat wallets they can easily afford StubHub prices.
I have been a diehard fan of UCLA basketball for close to 50 years. The first game I attended was the 101-69 Final Four blowout in the famous rematch against Houston and Elvin Hayes.
Since John Wooden retired we have pretty much witnessed the same scenario. We hire a coach, after two or three years much of the fan base hates him, even when they have had a reasonable level of success.
The latest sacrificial lambs are Steve Alford and his son. The vicious way they have been treated makes me ashamed to be a fan. It's almost laughable to hear Bruins fans wonder why we can't hire an "elite" coach.
Look in the mirror, UCLA fans. No top-notch coach wants to work for you.
What UCLA Athletic Director Dan Guerrero said: "We don't run a coaching carousel around here."
What he meant: "I can't admit to yet another error in the hiring of coaches."
Steve Alford said he told Guerrero to tear up the last extension he was given.
What he meant: "They would still have to pay me $7.8 million if they fire me."
I wonder if Bill Walton will still refer to the Pac-12 as "The Conference of Champions" a hundred times a game.
Always the gentleman and professional, Ross Porter [March 19] never complained, never made a public spectacle of his firing. To this day, he has never said anything negative about the Dodgers organization. I find it hard to believe that another baseball organization couldn't have utilized Porter's talent, work ethic and love and commitment to the game, and its fans.
No announcer ever worked harder or prepared more for a broadcast than Ross Porter. John Wooden would be proud of the man who followed one of the Pyramid of Success virtues, "Failure to prepare is preparing to fail."
Ross Porter never failed to prepare and never failed anyone. The same cannot be said of the Dodgers organization and other organizations in baseball.
I was saddened to learn of the death of Joe Garagiola, a great storyteller of baseball lore.
My favorite Garagiola anecdote was of the time Richie Ashburn slid into third base and Billy Cox tagged him. Umpire Beans Reardon said, "safe," but made the arm gesture signaling "out." Ashburn asked which one was correct. According to Garagiola, Reardon replied: "Richie, you know you're safe. Billy, you know he's safe. But 30,000 fans saw my arm go up. Richie, you're out!"
Stephen A. Silver
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