The Los Angeles Dodgers celebrate their 50th Anniversary today.

An Inside Look at the L.A. Dodgers Pittsburgh Pirates Series with Lasorda's Lair

Fifty years ago today, the Dodgers opened the premier ballpark in the game.  Today they celebrate.  The Pittsburgh Pirates seem to be the favorite team to schedule for such joyful occasions.  Sort of like your favorite college team putting that cream puff on the schedule for homecoming.  Let’s trust the Bucs can piss all over the Dodgers parade.

We wanted to see what all the excitement was about in L.A. so we reached out to Lasorda’s Lair with some questions.


We were reading your site when the news of the new ownership broke. Just how big is this to Dodgers fans?

It is beyond huge. It is Massive. As you well know when the news broke that Magic Johnson and the GBM won the bid to purchase the Dodgers, it was met with a huge waive of Happiness and Relief from Dodger fans all across the globe. The entire Dodger Blogosphere went into a big celebration all throughout the night. As Dodger fans reflected on the last year and a half of nightmarish hell, we rejoiced in the fact that the most beloved sports hero in LA, and a reputable finance firm now owns the Dodgers. We are confident that Magic and the GBM will reverse all the damage that scummy McCourt has inflicted onto our beloved boys in blue. Dodger fans now have renewed hope, that very soon, the Dodgers will return to prominence, and the World Series will be back at Dodger Stadium where it rightfully belongs.

What do you anticipate some of the first things ownership will do? What should they do?

That is a very good question that nobody can really answer. The simplest answer is we don’t know. However, if I made a guess, I would think that the first thing that they will do is sign Clayton Kershaw to a long term contract extension. As you know, Kershaw won the NL Cy Young award last season for his complete and utter domination against all opponents. He is the one, or the direct descendant of Sandy Koufax, destined to bring glory back to the Dodger pitching staff, much like Koufax did in the 60’s. Other than locking up Kershaw, I think the new group will want to win as soon as possible, so I would look for them to bring in several high priced free agents, which should include resigning all-star right fielder Andre Ethier. Other things the new ownership group need to do is rebuild the farm system, reinvest in international spending, and sign a new TV deal. All of those should come soon.

What can you say about the pitchers the Dodgers will throw at the Bucs?

First of all, my apologies for the impending shutout on Tuesday. Sorry guys, with Kershaw on the mound, you’re not scorin.’ However, following Kersh is Chad Billingsley. You might have a chance with him, however, Bills pitched 8.1 scoreless innings on Friday night against the Padres with 11 whiffs. He was masterful. Bills had struggled during the spring, due to not being able to locate his cutter.  Well, Bills finally decided to scrap the cutter for his first start, instead relying on his good ol’ trusty four seam fastball, and power curve. Bills also mixes in a nice changeup as well.

The third game starter hasn’t been announced, but it should be Chris Capuano, since Ted Lilly is still on the DL with a rusty neck. Capp pitches well normally, and usually puts up good control. He had an unusual outing this week where he walked five in 4.2 innings. Before he tired out in the 5th, he had only allowed two hits in four shutout innings. The bullpen,  however,  has been taxed because Kershaw had the flu on Thursday and could only pitch three innings, and because Mattingly contracted some kind of Joe Torre like disease or something.

What has Don Mattingly been doing with the bullpen?

I have been asking that myself. He should have been more efficient with his usage, since this is the first week, but he was trying to win, in his defense. He made a total of 17 pitching changes over the course of the four game series in SD. Kershaw was sick with the flu, Cappy tired out by the 5th inning, and Aaron Harang was awful in his debut outing. What worries me specifically is his love affair with Jamey Wright, and his habit of only making pitching changes when the bases are loaded. He brought in Jamey Wright with the bases loaded during the series twice. I worry about the stress the workload will put on young pitchers like Javy Guerra, Kenley Jansen, and Scott Elbert.

Just how great is Vin Scully?

Just how great is he? That’s like asking you if Ralph Kiner is awesome? Is Willie “Pops” Stargell awesome? How about the 1979 “We Are Fam-a-lee” championship team? Of course he is awesome. Nothing I say could ever do Vinny justice. Every day that we get to hear Vinny’s beautiful voice is a gift from the Baseball Heavens. Vin Scully is of course the greatest sportscaster ever. His beautiful voice is like a breath of fresh air. I believe that all Dodger fans have the right to listen to Vinny every inning of every game.  He is not only the voice of the Dodgers, he is also our guide throughout the season. He is the best, there is no one like him.

We asked the same questions to co-editor Stacie Wheeler:

 We were reading your site when the news of the new ownership broke. Just how big is this to Dodgers fans?

The news of the ownership resolution is HUGE to us Dodger fans. We have been waiting a long time to be rid of McCourt, and luckily we got one of our top choices out of the bidding groups. It was like a celebration when we heard the MAGICAL news!

 What do you anticipate some of the first things ownership will do? What should they do?

I think the new ownership will keep things status quo for a bit, but if the Dodgers are not winning come summer time, we will definitely see changes. What they should do right away is sign Clayton Kershaw and Andre Ethier to long-term deals. That is priority #1.

What can you say about the pitchers the Dodgers will throw at the Bucs?

Clayton Kershaw and Chad Billingsley will be tough to beat, but after those two our rotation has been a bit shaky. Chris Capuano looked good through four innings in his first start, but had a meltdown in the fifth. We’re looking for him to go a bit longer in his next start.

 What has Don Mattingly been doing with the bullpen?

Oh boy, that question is something we are worried about at the moment. We are afraid he has contracted the Torre-Disease. The mismanagement and overuse of the bullpen is a concern. We had to deal with Clayton Kershaw having the flu and only getting through three innings Opening Day, so it’s hard to evaluate his bullpen usage just yet.

Just how great is Vin Scully?

Vin Scully is a living legend. Simply the best :)


We’ll be at the game tomorrow, so look for our live tweets!


Good stuff from Scott.  Now, let’s take a quick look at L.A.  The Pittsburgh Pirates have already had  two off days in the 2012 season.  It’s been tough to get into the season with all the down time, but now that’s over.

The Bucs are in L.A. to take on the Dodgers. No, wait. Maybe the Bucs should just worry about the four players that have carried the weight thus far.

Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, Clayton Kershaw and Chad Billingsley. The two pitchers have put together 11.1 scoreless innings with 14 strikeouts. Billingsley ball-gagged the Padres with eleven strikeouts in his first start.

Kemp and Ethier did most of the heavy lifting for L.A. The Dodgers scored 21 runs with Kemp and Ethier driving in 16. Ethier had four extra bases hits with two doubles, triple, and a homer. Kemp hit over .400 and had two homers.

The Dodgers pitching staff had some tough times with Chris Capuano (who wanted the Bucs to sign him?) and Aaron Harang having starts they will be glad to forget, combining for ten walks.

But it’s not all peanut butter filled pretzels for the Dodgers. 1B James Loney is pulling a Clint Barmes, and is still looking for his first hit. It appears there will be very little offense coming from their infield, as Dee Gordon is the top stick with a handful of hits.

Dodger Stadium will be the place for celebration today. Fifty years ago today, the gates opened as L.A. welcomed their first Dodgers fans.

Let’s trust the Pirates can do their best to ruin it for them.

Tags: Andre Ethier Chad Billingsley Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers Matt Kemp Pittsburgh Pirates

comments powered by Disqus