While the Dodgers await the results of Hanley Ramirez’s MRI results on his jammed right thumb, I still hate the WBC. The WBC is a stupid contrived pointless tournament. Baseball isn’t meant to be played in a tournament. Yes I’m still pissed off about Hanley’s injury. Sour grapes sure, but can you really tell me you think the WBC means anything?
Not only was the World Baseball Classic a complete joke. Team USA sucked. What they were was a roster of major leaguers that couldn’t hit minor league pitching. It was utterly pathetic. I am glad there were no Dodgers on team USA that had to share in that embarrassment. Except for the former Dodger manager, Joe Torre, who led the team to another tournament of losery. (sorry guys, I guess I’m just venting. just frustrated by the situation. I still believe there should be some big rule changes to the WBC.)
Feb 24, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez (13) grounds out during the third inning against the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
The rule changes are ridiculous. Mercy rules, pitch count limits, and that very bizarrely stupid rule about extra innings. The WBC is a failure on all fronts, but the worst part of it is holding it during the middle of spring training, and seeing many major league players taken away from their real teams, and being put into injury risk right before the season starts. Why isn’t this dumb tournament held during the winter, when there is less at stake?
Nobody cares about who wins the WBC over here in the United States. It’s even worse when you lose one of your star players to injury during the championship round. Even worse losing him in the very last game of the tournament.
They need to put in some new rules for the WBC. I think the MLB teams should have the final say on whether their player can go over and play in the tournament or not. The player’s real team should be able to say no, if their team so should choose to. I think the Dodgers should have just said no to Hanley playing for the Dominican team for so long. It’s as simple as saying we are very sorry Hanley, but no you can’t go away for three weeks to play in an arbitrary tournament. Sorry buddy. The Dodgers, his real team, is much more important than the Dominican team winning the WBC.
Manager Don Mattingly has said that if Hanley is out more than a couple of weeks, he will move Cruz to short, and rotate players at third base. Of course you must read between the lines.
Translation: Cruz moves to shortstop. Juan Uribe will be the starting third baseman.
Yup, that’s what that means. Mattingly did say he would move Cruz to short, but the whole platooning different guys at third idea, just means that Uribe will get the start. We know the Dodgers like Uribe, despite him being a terrible hitter. So for whatever reason they just don’t want to cut him. They like his defensive versatility, and just think he’s a very nice guy. It’s truly sickening since everyone knows the guy can’t hit at all. It is what it is.
Just thinking about this scenario just makes my blood boil. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s going to be a big disadvantage having an automatic out in the lineup.
Anyways, the Dodgers travel to Surprise Stadium to take on the Royals today. Zack Greinke won’t be with the team as he is scheduled to stay behind and pitch in a simulated or minor league game against the White Sox at the backfields of Camelback Ranch. Birdman is expected to throw about 45 pitches.
Dodgers Lineup vs. RoyalsSchumaker LF Ellis 2B Kemp CF Gonzalez 1B Hairston DH Cruz SS Puig RF Punto 3B Federowicz CAaron Harang vs. Wade Davis
The rest of the team plays Kansas City with Luis Cruz playing shortstop, and Nick Punto at third base. Yasiel Puig is in the lineup again as well, playing in left field and batting seventh. Aaron Harang will get the start for the Dodgers, while KC will counter with Wade Davis. The Dodgers are expected to use Ronald Belisario, Matt Guerrier, and Kevin Gregg during the game. The three pitchers are scheduled to get in some work following Harang.
We might not get Hanley’s MRI results until tomorrow. So kick back relax and watch the Dodgers at 1:05 PM this afternoon. Try not to think about the huge gaping hole in the lineup that the WBC left us.