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Saturday, September 11, 2004

Dodgers 6, Cardinals 5

Prelude: When we grant the term "hero" to anyone donning a uniform, we cheapen the word. Enough already.

Jeffy: a fine job, even with the four runs. This series seems to be eating Cards, didja notice? First Rolen, now Pujols taking one to the knee. <snaps fingers> Too bad.

Izzy: hit of the game and no doubt about it. And just in time to hand the game to the guy who could seal the deal.

Fins, who's carried us on his shoulders lately when Belly's faltered, A. Perez, Ross -- couldn't have done it without you.

And now we all know why the Dodgers lead the NL in defensive efficiency. Larussa's got a good club, no doubt about it... but man, can we bag 'em when we need 'em. What a fantastic win.


Update, 9/12 9:43 AM PDT: Rich Lederer has a very interesting coda to last night's game: Pujols only had one hit, thanks to the fact that Larry Walker failed to touch second base as he rounded it. Pujols did not actually get a hit (this is in fact recorded in the box score, but oddly, not by the game log). Izzy astutely made an out on the play by calling for the ball and touching the bag.

I believe Fernando Luna played a huge part in the Dodger wins of the last two nights, and that fact emphasises my belief that either Rolen or Beltre deserves the MVP. Sure, Bonds is fabulous offensively, but three games ago number 29 had a hand in 9 outs. That's helping to close out 1/3 of the opposition's game, and that's just one guy.

Defense should be considered for MVP.
Sweetie -- I thought you had something there until I looked up actual putouts. Bonds has 186 putouts, Beltre has 97, and Rolen 92. One might argue, well, Bonds is an outfielder behind a pitching staff that likes to give up a lot of flyballs in an extreme pitcher's park. There might be something to that; Bonds doesn't rate highly in terms of absolute numbers of outs for outfielders, but being that he's in left, he also doesn't get an especially large number of chances, either. As a rough gauge, his FPCT is well below that of his peers, but then, it always has been. Looking at the more advance metrics available at Baseball Prospectus, his RAA2 is -3, which means he's a below-average left fielder. It's not surprising considering his age, but when you add his for-the-ages bat into the mix, and the weak cast surrounding him, I still think he's the no-doubt choice for NL MVP.

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