The Round Table is in session and the talk is all about… Don Mattingly… is he starring in Gone Guy? … Wild Cards… stay or go? … Baseball movies… TV… and how much would you shell out to go to the World Series?
It’s all happening right now…
1) Two years running now the LA Dodgers… a team that ownership expended big bucks on to win now… have been eliminated from the playoffs. As in every short series there were some good moves as well as head-scratcher decisions made with on field personnel… is Don Mattingly’s job safe?
Archie: Don BARELY made it to this year. If not for the surge they had at the end of last season he probably does not make it to the playoffs this year. Don is a good manager and the Dodgers are lucky to have him. I think his job is safe for at least the time being.
Joe: Donnie Baseball almost got canned last year but somehow was given another chance to stay on as manager… I have no idea who his angel is, but, I fear that angel is beginning to lose some of his credibility after this year’s early exit from the playoffs. The next month will be telling if Mattingly is kept on as manager of the LA Dodgers… however, if he is, I expect him to be on a short leash for start of the 2105 season.
If, the Dodgers stumble again and don’t right the ship soon, then someone has got to take the hit and it won’t be the GM, the players or the owners.
Sandy: From all I’ve heard Mattingly is safe for now, but, if Colletti is fired then “Donnie Baseball” should follow him out the door. While it’s true that no one trusted the bullpen, I think pitching Kershaw on 3 days rest was a bad idea. They should have gone with Haren, at least he was rested. Plus, other decisions Mattingly made were definitely head scratchers.
Benching Puig in an elimination game was dumb. I know Puig is a handful and he always seems to find new ways to irk his manager and teammates, but, there are other ways to punish him without hurting the team.
I think the owners should start from scratch with a new GM and manager. This team needs a lot of fixing.
Steve: Safe? No I think he has one foot out the door. Anytime that you own the highest payroll in baseball, and, can’t get out of the first round of the playoffs, then, someone has to go. And, typically, that someone is the manager. (Just ask Mike Hargrove with the Indians years ago.)
This is not entirely Mattingly’s fault, though. You have to put some blame on Ned Colletti for spending millions on players, but, completely ignoring the bullpen.
Mattingly went with his best option in Kershaw in both Games 1 and 4, even after giving up a couple of hits. Kershaw was dominant up until that point. By not having a decent bullpen, he had to go with his ace. Either way, Mattingly will be lucky to survive until next week. He is all but done in Los Angeles.
After MLBRT was finalized and scheduled for publication for Thursday morning it was announced on Tuesday (10/14) by the Los Angeles Dodgers that former Tampa Bay Rays executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman was their new president of baseball operations.
It was also announced that Ned Colletti, who has been the Dodgers’ general manager since 2005, will be retained by the Dodgers as senior adviser to the president and CEO of the Dodgers, Stan Kasten.
Internal sources have told the media that Friedman will be able to hire a general manager with the Dodgers.
At a press conference where the announcements were made Kasten was asked if Don Mattingly would be retained as the manager of the Dodgers and Kasten said: “That’s my expectation, absolutely, but you’d have to ask Andrew that. We have a lot of stuff that we’re not going to discuss with you, but you should expect Donnie to be here.”
When asked, if, he thought the Dodgers latest moves were a demotion, Colletti said: “If you want to let pride and ego get in the way, yeah, you could write that.”
Kasten interrupted and said, “Wait. We’ve discussed that. It’s a moving-over.”
Colletti added, “They believe I have a chance to continue to impact this organization in a positive way. That’s good enough. I want to work. I want to be accountable. I want to be responsible. You know what? Nine years is a long time, especially these nine years because it hasn’t always been smooth as glass.”
Stay tuned for further Round Table discussions regarding the Dodgers’ front office and possible on-field coaching staff…
2) Two wild card teams have made it into the championship series in MLB playoffs… KC is in the ALCS and San Fran is in the NLCS… does this validate the new wild card play-in system?
Archie: Not in my opinion. I personally think the Division Series are too short to really bring the cream to the top. Just like the bullshit 1 game WC playoff format. However, I will give the Cardinals credit for beating Kershaw not once but twice in the series.
Joe: Not sure if it does or not… but I heard this piece of info once, and I think it is now apropos of baseball’s playoffs… Just make it into the playoffs and then it’s a new season, everyone is at 0-0 and whomever gets hot first could run the table and take it all. It’s sort of what it’s become.
I will say this… if we’re stuck with the playoff system as it is… because, I don’t see MLB and TV giving up the golden calf anytime soon… then dump the second wild card and have the team with best record play the team with the worst record and the 2nd best play the 3rd best and then have the opening conference series expanded to seven games.
Sandy: I hate the new play-in game, its not fair to the #1 play-off team to possibly be eliminated based on one regular season game. If my team was 2/3 games ahead at the end of the season and then lost a play-in game that would suck.
Steve: I’m not so sure that it validates it, I mean in many years you have the hottest team in baseball typically be the wild-card recipient. Colorado did it in ’07, St Louis did it a couple years ago. This year you have Kansas City and San Francisco. While I don’t think San Francisco came in that hot, they have so much talent and are nearly impossible to beat in the post season as of late. KC is riding a wave right now, that may very well propel them into the World Series.
The playoffs creates a whole new season. Proof being the fact that the two best records in baseball managed to go 1-6 in the playoffs combined. Wild Card teams are hot. I was not a big fan of the one game playoff, but the game between the Royals and A’s had me on the edge of my seat.
3) Angels in the Outfield (the 1951 version of the Pittsburgh Pirates getting an Angelic hand to win) was just on broadcast TV… it’s a schlocky baseball movie that pulls on the heartstrings and it has a simplistic plot but sort of works. In fact on the Internet Movie Database (IMBd) it has a 7 plus (out of 10) rating… What would you rather have in a movie about baseball… sentimental heart tugging or real life drama?
Archie: I liked that movie okay. Tony Danza was still relatively good actor and it did pull on the heart strings. However, I still prefer Field of Dreams or The Natural as the type of movie I like about the game. Of course
that being said, comedies like Major League and Bull Durham are pretty good as well.
Joe: I’m a sucker for schmaltzy tear inducing heart tuggers. But, I do like my fair share of serious baseball movies, too. And, if the truth be known… if it’s a baseball movie then I’ll probably watch it. In the end result, I think I like a movie that has about a 75% serious side, with 15% comedy and about a 10% mix of tear inducing moments and just pure schmaltz… Field of Dreams, Bang the Drum Slowly, Eight Men Out, Fear Strikes Out…
As for those 1940/1950 style movies… ya know the ones +with a lot of vanilla stuff with some saccharine thrown into the mix, the aforementioned Angels in the Outfield, and others such as Pride of the Yankees, The Babe Ruth Story … if, I see ’em listed on AMC or some other channel and I got a spare hour and half then I’m plopping myself in my easy chair… maybe with some buttered popcorn and a coke…and I ain’t moving.
Sandy: After watching baseball for 162 games plus play-off games, I really don’t want to watch a baseball movie, not that into movies anyway, but if I did, I’d want drama.
Steve: I have seen both, and like both of them. I like to see those Baseball movies that pertain to real life events though. A movie called “A Mile in his Shoes” I just watched was about a pitcher that had Asperger’s syndrome and pitched in the minor leagues. I loved it because my son has Asperger’s, so, I was able to relate to that. But, give me a movie, like Major League, and I will watch that over and over again.
4) Some games of the MLB playoffs are being telecast on the MLB network, TBS and Fox1 cable stations… but there are some folks who don’t have access to these stations for whatever reason… should MLB be required to simulcast the games on a “free broadcast” channel?
Archie: I have fought, argued, bitched, cussed and pretty much vented this situation to every single person that would let me bent their ear; and the answer is simple, HELL YES! Example; I have a Nephew who is a big time baseball fan but is struggling with bills due to medical expenses. He cannot afford cable, DirecTV or Dish; how the hell is he supposed to watch ANY of the games?
Joe: I got one thing to say… yes sir, buddy, those games should be simulcast. There are too many peeps on social security or low paying jobs or in good knows what situation who can’t afford the outrageous cost to get cable that are being excluded and cheated out of watching baseball. Go to a game? Fergeddaboudit…. Most working Jills and Joes these days can’t afford to go to a game and those who are having financial difficulties have even less of a chance of ever being able to go to a game. Therefore, their only recourse is to watch the games on TV, but, with the cost of cable these days… (For cable and internet service I presently pay $149 plus a month)… it is not a possibility for some folks to have that chance unless the games are on so-called free TV.
So again… yes sir, buddy, those games should be simulcast or there should be some other alternative that would allow folks who can’t afford cable to have access to the games.
Sandy: It would be nice for everyone to see baseball games, but it’s a business and all about money, and, if there is “free broadcast TV” those that paid $300 a season for MLB “Extra Innings” would feel screwed and all the paid carriers will lose money. It’s not going to happen.
Steve: Unless the game is on FOX, I don’t get to see it. TBS comes in when it wants to, Same being for FOX1, I don’t have MLB Network, so, I can’t watch those games. I think with all the money they are making on the cable companies, they should do the fans a favor and at the very least allow free streaming.
Archie: NO MORE than $100 per ticket. And yes , I have been called cheap before.
Sandy: To be honest, and this will sound weird for a huge fan, but, I wouldn’t pay to go to the world series, because I can watch on TV and avoid the crowds and have the best seat in the house. I have better things to spend my money on.
Steve: I have had the luxury to attend 4 World Series games in my lifetime. I saw the Cardinals vs Rangers game 6 and 7 in 2011. I saw Cardinals vs Tigers in 06, and White Sox vs Astros. The most I paid for the tickets was $100. I thought that was steep even for a championship game.
However, the atmosphere at the games, especially in St Louis, was so electric, it is something you will never forget. I would easily pay $200 for a ticket to experience that again.
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