Are errors becoming a way of life for Dodgers?
The defensive projections are frightening.
Nearly two weeks into the season, the Dodgers are on pace to make 176 errors — more than twice the 83 they committed last year.
They made two more errors during a 9-0 loss to the San Francisco Giants on Saturday at Dodger Stadium, giving them 12 in 11 games.
They entered the game with a .974 fielding percentage, already third-worst in the National League. The Dodgers have made two errors in a game five times.
“I don’t think it’s a concern, because I know we’re better than that,” Manager Joe Torre said. “But right now we’re going to have fight our way through it.”
Both of the errors Saturday came in the third inning. Catcher A.J. Ellis threw the ball into center field while trying to get Aubrey Huff stealing second base, and shortstop Jamey Carroll then couldn’t handle a grounder off the bat of Mark DeRosa.
If there was any consolation, it was that the miscues were made by reserves.
“We’re going to make a lot more plays than we’ve made,” Torre said, “and the errors, when you look at the personnel, we know we can catch the ball better.”
End of the road?
Russ Ortiz did something Saturday he hadn’t done in a while: He got through an outing without allowing a run, pitching a scoreless eighth inning.
But with relievers Hong-Chih Kuo and Ronald Belisario nearing a return to the Dodgers, Ortiz acknowledged that his time in Los Angeles could be nearing an end.
“Everybody knows two guys are coming back,” he said, “and it’s a reality that I may have to face.”
Ortiz had been rocked in three consecutive outings before Saturday, when he lowered his earned-run average to 10.29.
“It’s a concern,” Torre said of Ortiz’s struggles before the game. “I don’t think there is any question.”
If the Dodgers remove Ortiz from their 25-man roster, he would have to clear waivers before deciding whether to accept an assignment to the minor leagues.
“I can’t give you an answer on any of that,” Ortiz said when asked whether he would be willing to pitch in the minors.
George Sherrill threw a perfect ninth inning, a return to the form that made him such a valuable setup man last season.
“I give it about an 8½,” said Sherrill, who lowered his ERA to 12.46. “It’s still just a hair off, but I’ll definitely take it.”
Sherrill still has not put together consecutive scoreless outings this season.
“I don’t know if it was just not enough appearances in spring training or what it was,” Sherrill said of his inconsistency. “It’s just finding out the one or two or three or sometimes four or five things that happen that go wrong and correcting them. For some reason this year it just took me a lot longer.”
Torre said Manny Ramirez’s right calf, which tightened up in the fourth inning Friday and forced the left fielder to leave the game, has bothered him since the season-opening series against Pittsburgh. Torre said he hoped Ramirez could return Sunday. . . . Matt Kemp went one for four with a single, ending his streak of hitting a homer in four consecutive games. . . . Ellis collected his first career extra-base hit with a ninth-inning double. He had two hits, his first multi-hit game.