Wednesday, June 03, 2009
A Couple From Jay Jaffe's BP Chat
Jake (LA): Can anyone beat the Dodgers in the NL West?
Jay Jaffe: I'll never say never as to whether somebody could beat them out, but they looked like the class of the division at the outset of the year, and even with the major blow of losing Manny Ramirez for a third of the season they've widened the gap. The NL West flag is theirs to lose.
jay (LA): Always enjoyed your column! I think the dodgers have enough to win the division, but is Billingsley, Kershaw, Kuroda and Wolf enough SP for playoff season? Seems to me that may not, but the first two are untouchables, the latter two not appetizing for pretenders. Offensively maybe a right handed bat from the bench (bobby crosby or garret atkins for the right price, chin lun hu or delwyn young). what is your take?
Jay Jaffe: A namesake who's a Dodger fan? This is what it sounds like when doves cry...
I hope and expect they'll add another veteran starter by the deadline, because between Kershaw's limitations and those of Wolf, they need extra arms to patch them through. That said, I've been pleasantly surprised with what they've gotten out of Official Hit List Whipping Boy Eric Milton, because while wandering in the weeds he honed a change-up, and has given the Dodgers a couple of serviceable starts.
The bench needs some work, mainly via Joe Torre ditching the 13th pitcher so they can have an extra live body. I wouldn't touch Crosby with a ten-foot clown pole, but I suspect they'll scare somebody up sooner or later.
oOoOo (UuUuU): Rangers or Angels to win the West?
Jay Jaffe: As impressed as I am by the effects of the Rangers' defensive upgrade, I still worry that their staff doesn't miss enough bats, and holy hell does Vicente Padilla stink on ice. [post-chat update: Padilla placed on outright waivers and told to get out of Dodge by sundown]
I'll still take the Angels in the long race, thanks.
Dennis (Monterey Park, CA): Hi Jay, thanks for your great work and the chat. What is your prognosis for my Angels this season? Time to send Kendrick and Aybar down and bring up Sean Rodriguez and Brandon Wood?
Jay Jaffe: I'd say the Howie Kendrick party is over, and while I don't think much of Rodriguez, the time to see what Wood can do is long overdue. Seriously, I think he and Jeff Clement are drinking from the same jug of bad organizational karma.