Dodger Manager Tom Lasorda, expressing a lifelong fondness for the Three Stooges, said Thursday night how much he’d like to see the “Curly Shuffle” music video shown on the DiamondVision scoreboard screen, like they do in New York’s Shea Stadium.
Lasorda couldn’t understand it when someone gently suggested that it might not be such a good idea here.
“Why not?” Lasorda asked.
Then the game began, and the Dodgers answered the question for him. Life already imitates art enough without the Dodgers playing to a slapstick accompaniment.
The only thing missing from the Dodgers’ 6-1 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies before a crowd of 29,591 Thursday night were Curly’s “yuk-yuk-yuks.”
Three more Dodger errors run the total to 62 in 46 games. Two Thursday night came on one stolen base play and did in Fernando Valenzuela, who now has lost three of four decisions at home and is back to being a .500 pitcher (5-5) after winning his previous two decisions.
And two of the errors were committed by Mike Scioscia, Valenzuela’s personal choice to be behind the plate when he is pitching.
The Phillies, meanwhile, got a complete-game win out of John Denny, who came into the game with a 1-5 record and hadn’t beaten the Dodgers since 1978, when he still was with the Cardinals.
Denny gave up a second-inning home run to Mike Marshall and nothing more, striking out Terry Whitfield with the bases loaded in the sixth and inducing Scioscia to fly out with two on in the eighth.
The Mets show the video, which is performed by Jump in the Saddle, as a favor to Keith Hernandez, a Stooges fan who also is a Gold Glove first basemen.
With the Dodgers, however, it is reminiscent of the stage line about committing suicide in Buffalo: It would be redundant.
The follies began in earnest in the third, when the Dodgers committed two errors on a stolen base.
With the score tied, 1-1, Denny led off with a single. Jeff Stone attempted to bunt him over but failed, Valenzuela forcing Denny at second. Stone then took off for second, and when Scioscia’s throw tailed to the right side of the bag, he picked himself up and continued to third.
And when Ken Landreaux, who Monday night in New York had overrun another wild throw while backing up second, kicked this one, Stone headed home in a race with Phillie third-base coach Dave Bristol, the biggest obstacle Stone had in reaching the plate.
The Phillies broke it open in the sixth, when singles by rookie Rick Schu and Juan Samuel put runners on the corners with none out. Mike Schmidt’s sacrifice fly made it 3-1. Valenzuela walked Von Hayes, then induced Glenn Wilson to hit a chopper in front of the plate.
Undecided as to who should field it, Scioscia finally picked it up, slipped, and made an off-balance throw into right field. Samuel scored easily and Hayes scored all the way from first, and it was 5-1.
Denny, the 1983 Cy Young Award winner who has never been the same since developing a nerve problem in his right elbow, came into the game with a 1-7 record lifetime against the Dodgers. His last win was almost seven years ago, when he beat Tommy John, 6-1.
Denny surrendered a two-out home run to Mike Marshall in the second, which tied the score 1-1 after Schmidt had doubled and scored on Ozzie Virgil’s sacrifice fly.
The Dodgers had runners on base in every inning except the first, but double plays kept Denny out of trouble in two innings, and he struck out pinch-hitter Terry Whitfield with the bases loaded to escape the sixth.
That was no ordinary strikeout, either, as Virgil dropped the checked-swing third strike. Greg Brock, the runner on third, came charging to the plate, only to be waved frantically back by Whitfield while Virgil stood at home, holding the ball.
Home-plate umpire Fred Brocklander made no call until Virgil and Denny began screaming in protest. Finally, Brocklander signalled to third base umpire Ed Montague, who ruled that Whitfield had gone around on the pitch and was out.
Dodger Notes Mike Marshall’s home run was his first since May 19 in Philadelphia, when he connected off Charles Hudson of the Phillies. Marshall had gone 4 for 26 between home runs. . . . Of the Dodgers’ 33 home runs, 26 have come with the bases empty. . . . Rumor of the week: The Dodgers have resumed their pursuit of Boston third baseman Wade Boggs, but the Red Sox reportedly are seeking Orel Hershiser in return. Vice President Al Campanis acknowledged that he has talked to the Red Sox--"We’ve talked to about 10 clubs,” he said--but refused to confirm, with some annoyance, that the discussion centered on Boggs. “If I talk about a deal and then we don’t make it, you say we’ve failed,” Campanis said. . . . R.J. Reynolds has hit in seven of his last eight games, raising his average over .260, while taking the place of the injured Al Oliver in the outfield. Oliver (hamstring) is scheduled to come off the disabled list on Monday. “I’m just trying to be good and steady, no more than that,” Reynolds said. “Whatever happens, fine. It’s a consolation for me that since Scoops (Oliver) has been hurt, I did my job. If Scoops comes back, I just hope I’m the first one called on.” . . . Fernando Valenzuela and Dwight Gooden of the Mets are scheduled to meet again Tuesday night in Dodger Stadium. . . . Ken Landreaux, who made three errors in 1984, already has matched that total this season. . . . Mike Schmidt’s RBI was the 1,200th of his career. In the last five seasons, only Eddie Murray of the Orioles has driven in more runs than Schmidt. Murray began the season with 525 RBIs in the last five seasons, Schmidt 514.