“Dodgers Blue-Mistakes-Missed Opportunity”
The Red Sox-Dodgers World Series is over.
Boston has another ring. Los Angeles has more frustration.
The Bosox big hitting team beat the Blue and its mistake prone manager.
The Red Sox can beat you anyway you want to play, small-ball or long ball.
The Dodgers did not hit, and their in season strength, home runs, and quality pitching disappeared.
David Price came up big again in this impressive series, making people forget the fact he was (0-9) in his career in postseason starts before this Fall Classic began.
Clayton Kershaw gave LA all he could, but the scoreboard will show he is (1-4) in closeout games in post season in his career.
But this series was in part about the Red Sox spraying hits all over Fenway Park and then in Chavez Ravine.
But this series also has to be about a second fall of mistakes by Manager Davie Roberts, the mishandling of the LA bullpen.
Call it mis-use, or maybe over-use, but what we saw last fall, in the series collapse against Houston, was revisited again with bad outings by the bullpen in this Boston series.
Or maybe I should say, bad decisions by the manager, when to use and how to use his bullpen.
A year ago, LA used the bullpen 32-times in that seven game series, in losing to the Astros. The bullpen a year ago had a (4.35-ERA) against Houston. Brandon Morrow pitched in all 7-games, and was fatigued. Kelley Jansen pitched in 6-of those games. The entire bullpen gave up 6-homers.
And now as we stumbled thru Sunday night’s game, the same set of glaring stats blinked infront of your eyes.
Roberts used the LA pen 25-times in this series. Jansen pitched 5-times, Ryon Madson was banged around 3-times. The 6-core relievers in this series had a combined (7.07-ERA), gave up 12-runs in 15-critical innings, and served up 5-home runs.
Pulling starters early, going to your key relievers early or asking them to go multiple innings, a couple of times, goes against the grain of how you used your staff during the entire season, a season that got you to postseason.
Pulling Rich Hill early Saturday night after he had given up just 1-hit, was ridiculous. Just like using Kenley Jansen multiple innings in multiple appearances. Last year it was abuse of reliever Brandon Morrow, including brining him in in the 3rd inning of a game, and asking a guy coming off multiple surgeries, to pitch multiple innings.
Sure its a pressure packed time in October, but to do radical things with your arms, makes no sense at all.
Kenta Maeda was a multiple inning guy, a converted starter, but he pitched just 3-innings. Ryan Madson allowed lots of inherited runners to score, and they kept going back to him.
Alex Wood pitched only 2-plus innings. Pedro Baez was made to work multiple innings. And it went on and on.
Yes the Dodgers were hitting (.191) in this series, but what happened on the mound made it even more difficult. Roberts sitting his big left-handed bats in games 1-2 further clouds his decision making responsibility.
Of course you could also sight the fact that the A’s, Brewers/ Astros, did some strange things with their pithing staffs this month, but it sure didn’t seem right at the most important time of the year to do so many unorthodox things with your pitching staffs. And none of those teams were playing last week.,
Maybe it was never meant to be.
Maybe Boston was always too good. They won 108 in the regular season, out dueling the big hitting Yankees. They stormed thru a pretty tough American League playoff series that included Houston-Cleveland and red-hot Oakland.
The Bosox wind up (11-3) in this October stretch of games. They went (7-1) on the road in the most important time of the year. They hit (.364) with runners in scoring position.
The left hand says it was a fun Dodgers season. The right hand says it was another October failure, triggered by the Manager’s inability to use his bullpen correctly.
So it’s 2018, and the Dodgers, for all the money they spent on players over the last group of years, have not been able to do what they last did in 1988, win a World Series.
We all like Dave Roberts, person, player, baseball mind. But Dodgers fans can’t like what he’s done the last two World Series.
1–mistake led to another, and another, and it just cascaded down on them, via the use of the pen..
Missed opportunities? No. Mistakes with the bullpen? Definitely yes.