Reporting from San Francisco
In response to an assault in the Dodger Stadium parking lot that critically injured a fan on opening day, the Dodgers have cancelled plans to sell alcoholic beverages at half price at six midweek day games this season.
“As we said last week, we wanted to take a look at all our policies regarding to alcohol,” Dodgers spokesman Josh Rawitch said. “In taking a look, we decided it was the right thing to do.”
County Supervisor Mike Antonovich on Tuesday called for the Dodgers to cancel the half-price alcohol promotion, which was scheduled for April 21, May 4, June 15, June 22, Aug. 10 and Aug. 31.
Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck said last week that he believed alcohol consumption contributed to problems at Dodger Stadium and that police officials were pushing the Dodgers to raise prices and stop sales at an earlier point in the game.
Rawitch said that the Dodgers continue to reexamine their alcohol policies.
The Dodgers will begin an eight-game homestand Thursday. The games will be the first at Dodger Stadium since the season-opening series in which San Francisco Giants fan Bryan Stow was beaten.
Before the game Thursday, the Dodgers will hold a news conference to “discuss additional security measures in place at Dodger Stadium.” Beck will be present, as will Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and former LAPD Chief William J. Bratton, who has been retained by the Dodgers as a security consultant.
Blake is back
Third baseman Casey Blake, who sat out the last three days because of a bruised thigh, returned to the lineup Wednesday.
As a first baseman.
Blake last started at first base Aug. 20, 2008, but sounded unconcerned.
“If you can play third, you can play first,” he said.
Manager Don Mattingly started Blake at first base to avoid having left-handed-hitting James Loney face left-hander Jonathan Sanchez, who started for the Giants.
Loney was hitting .163 through Tuesday, including .133 against left-handers. He is four for 25 lifetime against Sanchez.
“James is not rolling yet at all,” Mattingly said. “To me, it’s feeding itself because he’s gotten anxious.”
Kuo keeps at it
Every day, before many of his teammates get to the ballpark, reliever Hong-Chih Kuo is throwing.
Sometimes he tosses the ball with a trainer. Sometimes he throws to a catcher. Sometimes he throws to a catcher with a hitter standing in.
“Just working,” Kuo said.
A season after he posted a 1.20 earned-run average, Kuo has looked mortal in his three appearances heading into the game Thursday. He had been charged with a run, a hit and two walks in two innings.
“Nobody’s perfect,” Kuo said.
Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said Kuo has been throwing high fastballs early in counts. Hitters have taken them for balls, resulting in Kuo falling behind in the count.
“If he gets ahead, in the count, they have to be ready to swing the bat,” Honeycutt said.
The first 50,000 fans at Dodger Stadium on Thursday will receive a purple and gold Lakers tribute cap with the Dodgers logo.