Dodgers Dugout: There’s good news and bad news, bad news, bad news, bad news

Los Angeles Dodgers' Walker Buehler (21) pitches against the San Francisco Giants.
Walker Buehler
(Jed Jacobsohn / Associated Press)
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Hi, and welcome to another edition of Dodgers Dugout. My name is Houston Mitchell, and there’s no sugarcoating it. The Dodgers are struggling. The question is, will it continue, or will they pull out of it? That answer depends on whether you are an optimist (yes they will), a pessimist (no they won’t) or a realist (there’s no way to know) and reveals more about you than it does the Dodgers.

So, there was good news and bad news for the Dodgers recently. Let’s go over it.

Good news: Walker Buehler won’t need Tommy John surgery.

Bad news: Buehler probably will be out until at least late August with a strained ligament in his pitching elbow. He will be shut down for a minimum of six weeks, and then his arm strength will have to be built back up again.

Bad news: The Dodgers were swept by the Giants.

Bad news: Mookie Betts is two for his last 31, with one walk.

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Bad news: Justin Turner is hitting .213.

Bad news: Cody Bellinger is hitting .207.

Bad news: Freddie Freeman is hitting .229/.245/.333 in June.

Bad news: The Dodgers have lost nine of their last 13.

Bad news: The rotation is now Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urías, Tony Gonsolin, Tyler Anderson and probably Mitch White.

Bad news: Urías gave up 19 homers in 185-2/3 innings last season. He has given up 12 in 64-1/3 innings this season.

Good news: The Dodgers lead the majors in averaging 5.15 runs per game.

Bad news: The Dodgers are averaging 3.55 runs per game in June.

Bad news: The Dodgers have forgotten how to draw walks. They have a team on-base percentage of .299 in June and are averaging 2.9 walks per game, compared to 4.1 in April and 4.3 in May.

Bad news: The Dodgers went two for 24 with runners in scoring position against the Giants.

Bad news: The Dodgers’ bullpen ERA in June is 5.40.

Bad news: Craig Kimbrel has given up a run in seven of his last 10 games. Amazingly, he still has only one blown save this season. In case you were wondering, Kenley Jansen has given up a run in four of his last 10 games and has three blown saves this season.

But even with all the bad news, there’s something even more frustrating: The Dodgers give the appearance of a team going through the motions the last couple of weeks. The extra hustle, the alert, smart baseball just isn’t on display. This is a time when you wish they had a guy like Kirk Gibson, who would call a team meeting and try to shake everyone awake.

Dave Roberts said before Sunday’s game: “People get caught up in their own individual paths, but the whole focusing on just winning a game and doing whatever it takes to win that day, we have to get back to that mindset. ... I just think the urgency to do whatever it takes to win that night on the offensive side hasn’t been there. It’s not a lack of care. It’s not a lack of try. But the mindset has to get back to whatever it takes to win a game.”


Justin Turner, when informed of Roberts’ comments, said, “I don’t know what that means. I don’t think we’re doing anything differently. Go out and you set the table and try to come up with a big hit, and [we] just didn’t.”

Few things will upset Dodgers fans more than getting swept by the Giants. The Dodgers need to show that it upsets them too. Starting tonight against the Angels.

Terrible news

John J. Sax, the son of former Dodger Steve Sax, was killed along with four others when their Marine Osprey aircraft crashed last week in the Imperial County desert.

“It is with complete devastation that I announce that my precious son, Johnny, was one of the five U.S. Marines that perished on Wednesday, June 8, in the Osprey Military crash near San Diego,” Steve said in a statement. “For those of you that knew Johnny, you saw his huge smile, bright light, his love for his family, the Marines, the joy of flying airplanes and defending our country. He was my hero and the best man I know, there was no better person to defend our country. There was never any doubt from a young age that Johnny would be a pilot and his passion was to fly. This loss will change my life forever and is a loss to not only the Marines but this world.”

Sax, 33, of Placer, Calif., was one of two pilots killed, along with Capt. Nicholas P. Losapio, 31, of Rockingham, N.H., and tiltrotor crew chiefs Cpl. Nathan E. Carlson, 21, of Winnebago, Ill., Cpl. Seth D. Rasmuson, 21, of Johnson, Wyo., and Lance Cpl. Evan A. Strickland, 19, of Valencia, N.M.

The Marines were based at Camp Pendleton and assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 364 of Marine Aircraft Group 39, part of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing headquartered at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego.

And that certainly puts a tough two weeks for the Dodgers in the proper perspective.

Ask Shawn Green

Up next in our “Ask...” series is former Dodger Shawn Green, who had perhaps the greatest offensive day in history when he went six for six with four homers, a single and a double, along with six runs scored and seven RBIs, against the Milwaukee Brewers on May 23, 2002.


Green is still the Dodgers single-season home run leader, with 49 in 2001. He played with the team from 2000-04.

Green will answer selected questions from Dodgers Dugout readers. Send in your questions for Green by emailing me at


The Dodgers are playing the Angels next. There have been 10 players in history who played for only the Dodgers and Angels in their career. They are:

Orlando Alvarez, OF, 1973-75 with Dodgers, 1976 with Angels
Larry Barnes, 1B, 2001 with Angels, 2003 with Dodgers
Nick Buss, OF, 2013 with Dodgers, 2016 with Angels
Jack Fimple, C, 1983-86 with Dodgers, 1987 with Angels
Doug Rau, P, 1972-79 with Dodgers, 1981 with Angels
Dave Sells, P, 1972-75 with Angels, 1975 with Dodgers
Jeff Torborg, C, 1964-70 with Dodgers, 1971-73 with Angels
Josh Wall, P, 2012-13 with Dodgers, 2014 with Angels
Johnny Werhas, 3B, 1964-67 with Dodgers, 1967 with Angels
Reggie Williams, OF, 1992, 1998-1999 with Angels, 1995 with Dodgers

The last two weeks

Let’s see how everyone has been doing the last two weeks, which covers the entire Dodgers skid:

Gavin Lux, .378/.452/.514, 2 doubles, 1 homer, 2 RBIs
Trea Turner: .302/.327/.528, 3 doubles, 3 homers, 7 RBIs
Chris Taylor, .282/.364/.462, 4 doubles, 1 homer, 4 RBIs
Hanser Alberto, .267/.267/.467, 1 homer, 1 RBI
Will Smith, .256/.347/.442, 2 doubles, 2 homers, 3 RBIs
Zach McKinstry, .250/.250/1.000, 1 for 4, 1 homer, 1 RBI
Freddie Freeman, .232/.271/.339, 3 doubles, 1 homer, 5 RBIs
Mookie Betts: .228/.267/.368, 2 doubles, 2 homers, 7 RBIs
Eddy Alvarez, .222/.222/.222, 2 for 9, 1 RBI
Max Muncy, .214/.313/.500, 3 for 14, 1 double, 1 homer, 5 RBIs
Justin Turner, .174/.283/.217, 2 doubles, 2 RBIs
Cody Bellinger, .150/.227/.350, 2 doubles, 2 homers, 5 RBIs
Kevin Pillar, .111/.200/.222, 1 for 9, 1 double
Edwin Ríos, .100/.250/.400, 1 for 10, 1 homer, 1 RBI
Austin Barnes, .071/.235/.071, 1 for 14

Team: .235/.303/.392, 22 doubles, 16 homers, 3.62 runs per game.

Starting pitchers

Tony Gonsolin, 0.75 ERA, 12 IP, 5 hits, 2 walks, 10 Ks
Mitch White, 2.70 ERA, 10 IP, 6 hits, 2 walks, 12 Ks
Julio Urías, 3.63 ERA, 17.1 IP, 14 hits, 4 walks, 22 Ks
Tyler Anderson, 4.00 ERA, 9 IP, 7 hits, 3 walks, 7 Ks
Clayton Kershaw, 4.50 ERA, 4 IP, 3 hits, 2 walks, 4 Ks
Walker Buehler, 8.76 ERA, 12.1 IP, 16 hits, 3 walks, 16 Ks

Key relievers


Evan Phillips, 0.00 ERA, 5.2 IP, 3 hits, 2 walks, 8 Ks
Caleb Ferguson, 0.00 ERA, 3.1 IP, 0 hits, 3 walks, 4 Ks
Yency Almonte,1.23 ERA, 7.1 IP, 2 hits, 2 walks, 8 Ks
Daniel Hudson, 4.15 ERA, 4.1 IP, 5 hits, 1 walk, 8 Ks, 2 saves
Craig Kimbrel, 4.15 ERA, 4.1 IP, 3 hits, 3 walks, 7 Ks, 1 save
Alex Vesia, 5.79 ERA, 4.2 IP, 7 hits, 4 walks, 7 Ks
Brusdar Graterol, 7.04 ERA, 7.2 IP, 8 hits, 0 walks, 6 Ks
David Price, 7.71 ERA, 4.2 IP, 7 hits, 2 walks, 5 Ks
Phil Bickford, 9.00 ERA, 3 IP, 4 hits, 0 walks, 1 K
Justin Bruihl, 10.80 ERA, 3.1 IP, 6 hits, 1 walk, 1 K
Michael Grove, 27.00 ERA, 1 IP, 3 hits, 1 walk, 0 Ks

Team: 4-9, 4.50 ERA, 114 IP, 99 hits, 35 walks, 126 Ks

26-man roster

Starting June 20, teams will be allowed to carry a maximum of 13 pitchers on the active roster.

Pitchers (14)
Yency Almonte
*Tyler Anderson
Phil Bickford
*Caleb Ferguson
Tony Gonsolin
Brusdar Graterol
Michael Grove
Daniel Hudson
*Clayton Kershaw
Craig Kimbrel
Evan Phillips
*David Price
*Julio Urías
*Alex Vesia


Catchers (2)
Austin Barnes
Will Smith

Infielders (7)
Hanser Alberto
Eddy Alvarez
Freddie Freeman
Gavin Lux
Max Muncy
Justin Turner
Trea Turner

Outfielders (3)
Cody Bellinger
Mookie Betts
Chris Taylor

These names seem familiar

A look at how players who were with the Dodgers last season are doing this season for other teams (through Sunday):

Matt Beaty, Padres, .108/.175/.189, 7 OPS+, on IL with a shoulder injury

Josiah Gray, Nationals, 6-4, 4.33 ERA, 62.1 IP, 53 hits, 29 walks, 69 Ks

Kenley Jansen, Braves, 3-0, 3.25 ERA, 27.2 IP, 17 hits, 8 walks, 38 Ks, 18 saves

Joe Kelly, White Sox, 0-1, 9.53 ERA, 5.2 IP, 8 hits, 6 walks, 8 Ks, on IL with hamstring injury

Corey Knebel, Phillies, 2-4, 3.24 ERA, 25 IP, 20 hits, 14 walks, 23 Ks, 11 saves

Sheldon Neuse, A’s, .228/.291/.305, 77 OPS+, sent to minors

AJ Pollock, White Sox, .247/.277/.373, 84 OPS+

Albert Pujols, Cardinals, .214/.319/.378, 102 OPS+

Jake Reed, Mets, 1-0, 7.36 ERA, 3.2 IP, 2 hits, 4 walks, 3 K’s

Zach Reks, Rangers, .286/.286/.321, 77 OPS+

Keibert Ruiz, Nationals, 169 at-bats, .266/.335/.373, 107 OPS+

Dennis Santana, Rangers, 2-2, 1.50 ERA, 24 IP, 12 hits, 5 walks, 14 Ks, one save

Max Scherzer, Mets, 5-1, 2.54 ERA, 49.2 IP, 36 hits, 11 walks, 59 Ks, on 15-day IL with strained left oblique

Corey Seager, Rangers, .218/.285/.402, 97 OPS+

Yoshi Tsutsugo, Pirates, 113 at-bats, .177/.281/.257, 56 OPS+, on the 10-day IL

Edwin Uceta, Diamondbacks, 0-0, 5.00 ERA, 9 IP, 7 hits, 4 walks, 4 Ks, sent to minors

Andrew Vasquez, Blue Jays, 0-0, 8.10 ERA, 6.2 IP, 6 hits, 3 walks, 6 Ks, on 15-day IL

Up next

Tonight: Angels (Noah Syndergaard, 4-4, 3.69 ERA) at Dodgers (Tony Gonsolin, 7-0, 1.58 ERA), 7 p.m., SportsNet LA, Bally Sports West, AM 570, KTNQ 1020, KLAA 830, KWKW 1330

Wednesday: Angels (*Reid Detmers, 2-2, 3.83 ERA) at Dodgers (*Tyler Anderson, 7-0, 3.07 ERA), 7 p.m., SportsNet LA, Bally Sports West, AM 570, KTNQ 1020, KLAA 830, KWKW 1330



Stories you might have missed

Walker Buehler will be shut down for 6-8 weeks with a flexor tendon strain

White Sox manager Tony La Russa says he’d order walk of Dodgers’ Trea Turner again

Another website asks court to throw out a Trevor Bauer defamation suit

Walker Buehler injury: Four ways the Dodgers can cope in the months ahead

And finally

Vin Scully and Bob Costas discuss baseball. Watch and listen here.

Until next time...

Have a comment or something you’d like to see in a future Dodgers newsletter? Email me at, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.