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Dodgers Update – 2/16
Spring Training is off and running for the Los Angeles dodgers and all of Major League Baseball. All of the teams are in either Florida or Arizona and everyone is dreaming of the World Series and taking a look at how they can make all the pieces of the puzzle fit together.
One of the biggest pieces of news so far of course is the loss of pitcher Yu Darvish. Darvish tested the free agency market and did sign a huge deal with the Chicago Cubs. The Dodgers of course were well aware of Darvish’ options and that he could leave. The team is quite satisfied with the arms it has and will plow forward with a solid starting rotation.
Other notes from early on in Dodgers Spring training include Matt Kemp’s renewed focus and energy on improving his defense and the platoon situation behind the dish. Also of note is the fact that as it stands the Dodgers starting rotation has four of its five talking the hill left handed. Will Kemp’s defense improve? How will the platoon situation behind the plate work out? Will the Dodgers get another right hander in the rotation or roll forward with the four left handers? Tune in to find out as Dodgers Spring training moves on.
Clayton Kershaw – Los Angeles Dodgers
Born on the 19th of March, 1988, Clayton Edward Kershaw is an American baseball player who plays pro pitcher for the MLB – Major League Baseball side Los Angeles Dodgers. The starting pitcher has since 2008 participated in the major leagues. Left-handed, Clayton has had an amazing run throughout his career as a baseball player. Raised by his mother after the parents’ divorce in the late ‘90s, Kershaw was born in Dallas, Texas. As a child, he took part in youth sports leagues such as Little League Baseball.
For his education, Clayton Kershaw attended the Highland Park High School where he was a pretty active baseball player. He even played center for Mathew Stafford, the quarterback in the varsity football team.
Early Years of Playing Baseball
After developing his skills in the pitch and perfecting his talent, Kershaw built a reputation for himself in 2006 after posting a 13-0 record with an ERA –Earned Run Average of 0.77, recording 139 strikeouts in the 64 innings pitched. Kershaw further exhibited his talents during a playoff game in which his side faced the Northwest High School of Justin, Texas. In the game, he managed to pitch an all-strikeout perfect game, striking out all the batters (15 in number) he faced in the match.
Clayton Kershaw participated in the Pan Am Championship where he pitched for the Junior National Team of the USA Baseball. His amazing skills and unrivalled talent saw him get selected as the High School Baseball Player of the Year by USA Today. He was also named baseball’s Gatorade National Player of the Year.
Considered top high school pitcher there was, Clayton made it into the 2006 MLB – Major League Baseball draft. He was then selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the draft’s seventh overall pick. Although he had initially committed to the Texas A&M University, Kershaw turned down an offer of a scholarship to sign a contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The signing bonus for the contract was estimated to be $2.3 million, making it the largest bonus to any Dodgers draft pick at the time of its signing. It has however since been topped by the 2010 draft of Zach Lee.
Career with The Dodgers
On the 24th of May, 2008, Clayton Kershaw entered into a contract with The Dodgers and was immediately included in the Active Roster. His debut as a Dodger was one of the most anticipated pitcher starts in Dodger’s history and led to the sale of a considerable amount of Dodger Tickets. His debut was against St. Louis Cardinals on the 25th of May. His debut was a total success as he struck out the first batter he faced and proceeded to achieve seven strikeouts through the game. He pitched two innings for the game and facilitated two runs. At the time of his debut, Kershaw was MLB’s youngest player, a title that he held for a whole year.
On the 27th of July, 2008, Kershaw won against the Washington Nationals his first major league game. For the game, Kershaw pitched six-plus shutout innings. He struck out five, allowed four hits and a walk.
World Series with The Dodgers
On June 2nd, 2017, Kershaw struck Milwaukee Brewer’s Jonathan Villar making his 2000th career strikeout. This was quite an achievement on his side and a boost to his career as it made him the fifth youngest player in the history of the major league to hit the mark. It also made him the 2nd fastest pitcher to reach 2000 strikeouts achieving the feat in 277 games. During the 2017 World Series, Kershaw started the opening game for the Los Angeles Dodgers in which they faced the Houston Astros. Striking out 11 batters in the game, Kershaw allowed only one run without walking anyone. His performance in the game propelled his side to an amazing win. The 11 strikeouts he made in the game were the third most ever achieved by a Dodger pitcher.
Other Interesting Information
Dodgers Update – 2/5
As expected free agent outfield Curtis Granderson has signed a contract elsewhere. Acquired last season for the postseason push, Granderson made little offensive impact with the Dodgers in 2-17. He signed a one year deal with the Toronto Blue Jays.
The progression of Chris Taylor in the outfield will be a big story to watch this season. Taylor exploded onto the scene last year and ended up with 21 home runs and 17 stolen bases. He should see a full season of playing time this season but also the sophomore slump potential as teams get to know him and his tendencies. It should be exciting.
Dodgers Update – 1/30
The Dodgers obviously had an immensely successful 2017 campaign even though they fell in 7 games to the Houston Astros in the World Series. The team continues to march forward and build a long term program in place that is lasting and sustainable. The new ownership and TV money is certainly there to support this long term commitment to excellence on the field.
The offseason has included a handful of marriages for Dodger players and of course various rumors about trades and free agency. Much of the talk centers on Yu Darvish and Matt Kemp. There is also that issue of center field and whether Chris Taylor will be the everyday CF for the boys in blue this season. With a long run all the way to Game 7 of the World Series the offseason is not all that long for the Dodgers. Spring Training is merely a couple of weeks away at this point.
MLB Team Stats – 2017
Let’s poke around a little bit and take a look at where the Los Angeles Dodgers rank in some critical team stats for MLB. This can help fans understand where the strengths and weaknesses are and what the Dodgers may be looking to improve via trades and free agency.
5. Red Sox
Some of these stats may seem off the wall and perhaps a bit crazy, but you will notice a trend. These are team offensive stats and you do see the top teams in MLB from last season throughout these rankings. There has to be something to that.
All in all it’s clear the Dodgers have a very competitive offense. We can break that down by position later to see where the main weaknesses are on offense.
History: Dodger stadium is a major baseball park, located at the Elysian park very close to Los Angeles, Praeger-Kavanagh Waterbury did the architect, and it was built 56 years ago, and the construction lasted for three years or less between 1959-1962. The Dodger Stadium project took a huge cost of 23million US Dollars. It is the city’s significant league base. Dodger stadium has a capacity of 56,000 and sometime in the past, recorded an attendance of 57,000 persons. Presently, Dodger stadium is the oldest ballpark in MLB (major league baseball) and has the largest seat capacity. It is usually referred to as pitcher’s park. The land portion used for dodger stadium was formerly seized from individual owners and dwellers as at the 1950s by Los Angeles city with the plan of developing the Elysian park by building public housing projects, playground, schools and college. The project was then a difficult one not until June 3, 1958, when Los Angeles voters approved a taxpayer committee for ‘yes on baseball’, there was enough funds to acquire352 acres of Chavez Ravin from the city. Dodger Stadium was the first stadium to be built with private money.
Renovations: Dodger stadium has been undergoing an upgrade for a while now. This renovation began last winter and involves a lot of improvement activities such as a thorough expansion of the field level entrances and relocation of the visiting clubhouse. A mega plan has been tabled to the big city of Los Angeles, waiting for approval for the second phase of the project. The renovation is expected to be in time for regular season home opener.
The following is a list of improvement to be made;
• Reasonable expansion of the field entrance to enable fans with loge, club tickets, dugout and pavilion to enter the stadium from the north side.
• Upgraded food services with outdoor speciality fare where former players and hall of fame managers can spend some time with their fans.
• Comfortable seating and lounging areas for drinking and relaxation.
• A significant expansion of the popular reserve level ‘Taqueria’ very close to the kids plays area at the left field reserve entry.
• Improving the electrical infrastructure of the stadium, designed to promote safety and provide fans with technology, comfort and relaxation.
• Enhancement of the ballpark landscaping
The just made renovation took a whooping sum of 100million US dollars and was recorded as the most extensive renovation so far. It’s interesting that the stadium retained its original look and structure while adding the state-of-the-art amenities.
Parking: Dodger stadium has roughly 16,000 parking space, hence once dodger tickets are gotten, finding a parking space may not be a problem but for what price? The general rate for parking at Dodger stadium is 10$ in advance and 20$ at the gate. The normal speed limit of Dodger stadium parking is 1.4 miles per hour. Dodger stadium parking has a laydown rules which includes.
• The target is to provide safe and convenient parking areas for all fans as people who purchase Dodger tickets, and Dodger Stadium parking passes in advance will be dedicated to prepaid lanes.
• The purchase of Dodger Stadium parking in advance for lots 13 and 14 are usually offsite on stadium way and allows for easy entry and exit.
• When leaving the environment, you are expected to exit from the same gate you entered
• Once dodger tickets are gotten, provisions are made for disabled dodger stadium parking permit or license by parking cashiers and attendants.
• Dodger stadium parking entrances are made open 2.5 hours before the scheduled game time.
• Drinking of alcohol while driving is prohibited.
How to get there: The dodger stadium traffic is quite Hence many routes are made available for easy movement. The fastest route from union station to the stadium is through the china town and Downtown gate. The secret of getting to Dodger Stadium early includes
• Avoiding early arrival
• Biking is surely a reliable way of getting there fast
• A walk from Chinatown gold line isn’t a bad idea, but may not be too favourable for hot days.
• You could as well take a shuttle through the shortest and less congested route.
Memorable moments: A lot of memorable and indelible moments occurred in Dodger stadium, some of which are;
• Kirk Gibson’s home run in 1988, he was inserted as surprise pinch hitter by Tommy Lasorda.
• Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter against Colorado Rockies on June 18, 2014
• Dodger Stadium opened on April 10, 1962, after spending previous seasons at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and lots more.
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