Hi, and welcome to another edition of Dodgers Dugout. My name is Houston Mitchell., and I’m wondering why the Dodgers gave up on Carl Crawford so quickly.
And just like that, Carl Crawford is gone. Andrew Friedman and company finally did the right thing and designated him for assignment on Sunday, meaning unless a team is dumb enough to sign him in the next 10 days, the Dodgers will eat the $34.6 million left on his contract.
Now that he is gone, let's take a moment to remember that he wasn't a failure throughout his entire Dodgers career. Acquired on Aug. 25, 2012, along with Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett and Nick Punto in exchange for James Loney, Ivan DeJesus,Allen Webster, Rubby De La Rosa and Jerry Sands, Crawford hit .290/.333/.416 in his first two seasons with the team, good for an OPS+ of 112. He also played well in the 2013 and 2014 postseasons, particularly the 2013 NLDS, when he hit .353 with three home runs in a 3-1 series victory over Atlanta.
But the last two seasons, yikes. A .240/.281/.351 slash line with an OPS+ of 75. It was painful to watch a player once considered one of the best in his days with Tampa Bay become one of the worst in his last two seasons in L.A.
Friedman spoke highly of Crawford after designating him for assignment:
"Carl was one of the most dynamic players in baseball. Elite athlete, really good bat-to-ball skills, tremendous defender. It's something that is inevitable for every player as they get later on in their career and things start to slow down. It has an effect. It's definitely not from a lack of work ethic. Again, he's among the hardest-working players I've ever been around. It's never an easy thing to do, but unsurprisingly, he was a tremendous pro about it. We wish him nothing but the best in whatever he decides to do going forward."
Crawford's body simply broke down, with a myriad of injuries robbing him of his quickness. In the cold reality of professional baseball, the Dodgers are better off without him, but in the real world, we can all wish him the best, and if he ends up with some other team eventually, wish him well against everyone except the Dodgers. Unless he ends up with the Giants (fat chance), then we can hate him.
Corey in the house
It has been quite a week for Corey Seager. In his last seven games, he is hitting .370 with 6 home runs and 11 RBIs, bringing his season totals to .286 with 14 homers and 35 RBIs. Not too shabby. Seager is going to be around for a long, long time. By the way, check out the top three Dodgers in slugging percentage (minimum 100 at bats) this season:
- Trayce Thompson, .571
- Seager, .505
- Joc Pederson, .445
All three of those guys are 25 or younger.
After looking at the bullpen in the last newsletter, a lot of you emailed asking for a closer look at the offense. We will do that in the next newsletter. You might be in for a surprise or two.
The magic number
Each week I will look at a uniform number a current Dodger is wearing and go through the history of that number with the Dodgers. When I was a kid and went to games, I was always curious who wore the number of my favorite players. Then again, I was a strange kid. For “best Dodgers to wear the number,” only the stats a player compiles while he was with the team and wearing that number count.
Next up is:
No. 22 (Clayton Kershaw)
Best Dodgers to wear No. 22 (other than Kershaw): Gene Hermanski (1946-51), Johnny Podres (1958-66), Brett Butler (1991-97).
Others to wear No. 21 with the Dodgers: Jack Quinn (1932), Rosy Ryan (1933), Ray Berres (1934), Vince Sherlock (1935), Ralph Onis (1935), Tom Baker (1936), Roy Henshaw (1937), Buddy Hassett (1938), Red Evans (1939), Lindsay Deal (1939), Bill Swift (1941), Johnny Allen (1941-43), Bill Sayles (1943), Bob Chipman (1943), Frank Wurm (1944), Bill Lorhman (1944), Jack Franklin (1944), Ray Hathaway (1945), Andy Pafko (1951), Mudcat Grant (1968), Paul Popovich (1969), Bill Buckner (1970-76), Boog Powell (1977), Don Stanhouse (1980), Mark Bradley (1981-82), Dave Sax (1983), Franklin Stubbs (1984-89), Don Aase (1990), Dick Schofield (1995), Chad Fonville (1995), Thomas Howard (1998), Devon White (1999-2000), Edwin Jackson (2004), Jose Cruz Jr. (2005-06), Toby Hall (2006), Mark Sweeney (2008).
What Vin Scully means to me
I asked you to tell me your best Vin Scully memory, and I got a lot of responses. I will publish selected ones in each newsletter. And keep emailing them to me.
Neil Manninen: In high school in the mid ‘60s I'd sneak in a transistor radio to listen to day games. No ear phones so I'd put my hand over the radio, turn it way down and put it up to my ear. If we scored it was thumbs up to the classmates and thumbs down if it was the opposition. If the English teacher caught on (Mrs. Seagal), she never said anything.
The TV situation
If you would like to complain about the Dodgers’ TV situation, you have three options: The Dodgers, Time Warner Cable and whatever local cable or satellite provider you have that doesn’t carry the Dodgers. Here’s who to contact:
For the Dodgers, click here or call (866) DODGERS ( 363-4377). (I hope you like form letters).
For Time Warner, click here.
For DirecTV, call (800) 531-5000 or click here.
For your local cable or satellite provider, consult your bill for the customer service number and for the website.
Bill Plaschke on why it is time to trade Yasiel Puig. Read all about it here.