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Unable to silence Phillies bats, Dodgers go down quietly

Oct 21, 2009, 11:47 PM EDT

The rotation provided one quality start in five games. The bullpen allowed 14 runs in 21 innings.
The Dodgers really never gave their offense a shot. It seemed like Joe Torre pushed all of the right buttons in the sweep of the Cardinals. This time, he mostly sat and watched. His one clear error was leaving Clayton Kershaw in too long in Game 1. Game 2 was the lone victory, and nothing could have made Game 3 winnable with Cliff Lee on the mound. In Game 4, he made the right calls and his best reliever got beat.
Game 5 featured seven homers, but most of the excitement was drained by the constant pitching changes, leading to very long innings. The Dodgers used three pitchers in the fourth, and the Phillies used three in the fifth. In the end, talent won out. Vicente Padilla was supposed to get hit hard by the Phillies’ left-handers in the series, but it was actually the righties that pounded him Wednesday night. Shane Victorino’s stunning homer off Kershaw in the sixth qualified as the finishing blow. The Dodgers did put together a big threat in the eighth, but James Loney, Russell Martin and Casey Blake all came up empty with the bases loaded. Philadelphia’s offense scored in six of eight innings and won 10-4.
While the Phillies can start preparing to play the Yanke… the ALCS winner, the Dodgers head home with a bunch of questions. Padilla, Randy Wolf and Jon Garland are all free agents, leaving the team with only Kershaw, Hiroki Kuroda and Chad Billingsley guaranteed rotation spots. If GM Ned Colletti decides a makeover is necessary to reach the next level, then Billingsley, Martin and Loney are possibilities to be dealt. Juan Pierre could also go. There’d be a whole lot more flexibility if Manny Ramirez chooses to depart, but odds are that he’ll exercise his $20 million option and stick around. With the sudden uncertainty in the ownership situation and so many of the team’s youngsters due healthy raises in arbitration, there might not be as much room for improvement as fans would like.

  1. Roger Thacker - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:27 AM

    Changing of the Guard is coming soon. As being part ownership should be taken off the table. The manager could not produce a winning team in many years. Time for him to go. Good bye dude.

  2. Mark Miller - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:33 AM

    The Dodgers were inconsistent all series and have had chinks in the armor that could be seen from afar. Time for a redo of the pitching crew. They’re mostly tools. The yanks have reached a model of consistency there – as have the phils. It’s time LA to step up.

  3. RStronach - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:39 AM

    Dodgers are stuck with Ramirez. Ethier is a model of young hitting. Dodgers need two more real hitters to round out their offense. That is not enough. They also need a full and competitive starting rotation to make it work. Kershaw, Kuroda and Billingsley cannot possible carry the weight. They need real and competitive help. In all this year’s NCLS has been a dismal failure.

  4. david kinney - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:40 AM

    Its hard to argue with a 7 game series like tennis..that ultimately weeds out the less talented player(s).
    This isnt about managing, strategy, and get off the managers back. This is about talent.. and the best team won.
    End of discussion.. When was the last time you saw a final tennis event withour you know who..
    Talent wins out in the long run

  5. cards fan - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:42 AM

    Who really care about the Dodger exit. Let Philadelphia fans cheer for the moment, but like the Yankees, National league teams must acknowledge the history of the Cardinals. FU cubs!!!

  6. what Card Fan - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:46 AM

    Card fan..I appreciate your loyality but your team did not
    live up to their history this year….
    So get over it.

  7. what Card Fan - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:47 AM

    Card fan..I appreciate your loyality but your team did not
    live up to their history this year….
    So get over it.

  8. Patrick Clark - Oct 22, 2009 at 12:49 AM

    Dodgers should try to sign John Lackey of the Angels. Lackey will be a free agent at the end of this season. He’d be the No. 1 starter on the Dodgers staff.

  9. Cru11 - Oct 22, 2009 at 1:24 AM

    I wonder what would have happened if the Dodgers would have given up Kemp and some other player for Cliff Lee?

  10. Marissa - Oct 22, 2009 at 1:32 AM

    Anyone got any ideas on how we get rid of Ramirez?

  11. Garyuu - Oct 22, 2009 at 1:57 AM

    Any discussion of next year has to include the Roxs…a great mix of young talent and veterans. And, with the return of Francis, possibly the best rotation in the National League.

  12. Harokin - Oct 22, 2009 at 2:10 AM

    It is unfortunate that the Dodgers lost, but it is a bit more disappointinting to see how quickly some fans are to bash the team. Yes, there are opportunities to improve, but let us not lose sight of the fact they managed to reach the NLCS which 15+ other teams failed to go!
    Appreciate the excitement while it lasted. I bleed BLUE! =)

  13. BIGBRUCE11047 - Oct 22, 2009 at 2:38 AM

    The Dodgers are in dire need of starting pitchers. What they have now are five or six set-up men. Wolf showed his experience as he turned out to be their best starter and when did he pitch – Game 4. Kershaw, Billingley and Kuroda need to be sent somewhere else so they can either sign free-agents or trade for proven starters. The Dodger bullpen is one of the best in the majors with Broxton being close to the best closer, but even he can have bad games which is what happened in Game 4. The Dodger management keep saying “next year” will be the year but it’s always next year, next year, next year. The Dodger team hit the playoffs in a tail-spin and that is not the way to start.

  14. Paul Deveaux - Oct 22, 2009 at 2:51 AM

    The Dodgers had a nice run but BIGBRUCE is right – they need some starting pitching. No team in recent memory has one the world series without at least two marquee starters. The bullpen is great and it would be even better with a couple of quality starters.

  15. NRESQ - Oct 22, 2009 at 3:46 AM

    Too bad, cause you’ll be bleedin’ blue as long as those cheapskates the McCourt’s own the team. Now with the divorce, where is the money going to come from just to keep what they got? They were too cheap to step up and get first class pitching this season, when they had a $30M lower payroll than last year. Hopefully, the McCourt’s will get into such a pissing match they will have to sell the team to a real owner.

  16. NedH - Oct 22, 2009 at 4:12 AM

    I loathe the Dodgers and have since they moved to Los Angeles, having persuaded the city fathers to forcibly eject Chicano families from Chavez Ravine, where they’d lived for generations.
    Still, it would have been rather a joy to see Joe Torre return to New York and beat the Yankees in the World Series. Now I’ll have to settle for the Phillies whomping the Yanks, or the Angels whomping the Phillies.
    (Oh, I hate the Yankees even more than I do the Dodgers, but for very different reasons.)

  17. Dan Olson - Oct 22, 2009 at 4:28 AM

    Tennis analogy? Give us a break!

  18. beantown red - Oct 22, 2009 at 4:29 AM

    I have no clue, but won series or not, we are so glad he is out of Boston!!! All you can do is hope some other idiot team maagement offers him more money. Then I’m sure he will go. He’s no team player in my opinion. Good Luck.

  19. charles - Oct 22, 2009 at 5:32 AM

    the dodgers gave away the games. they could not do anything. batting..catch…picth..and all other areas that are important. they use up there good players or trade them too some other team.
    the dodgers are very luckie they got this far this year. it all looks good on paper but they can not do anything correct. they play like a group of old men or ladys. a team of boyscouts can beat them…they played some real bad ball.

  20. spyder207 - Oct 22, 2009 at 7:25 AM

    Dodgers are stuck with Manny…good luck! Kinda funny that last year, when he left Boston, he was hailed by Dodger fans as the Second Coming, and Red Sox fans were ridiculed for not “appreciating” his Manny being Manny act (which includes all kinds of antics that are not team-friendly). Give it another year, LA, and you will be convinced that Theo Epstein and the Sox called it correctly…that is, if you aren’t convinced already!

  21. BklynBirny - Oct 22, 2009 at 7:36 AM

    I hesitate to second guess Torre, but I am astounded that Orlando Hudson got zero starts this post season. He was their catalyst for the better part of the year, and even though he struggled a bit late in the season, the Dodgers really could have used him getting on and scoring some runs, especially with Furcal not doing those things.
    Oh, and ya think they could have used Roy Halliday in this series?

  22. gary - Oct 22, 2009 at 8:45 AM

    it could be worse, you could live in the baltimore/ dc area
    either way we go we got nothing to cheer for!!!!!!!!!!

  23. Mary Schwalbe - Oct 22, 2009 at 9:02 AM

    I would have LOVED to see the same thing. After the way the Yankees treated Joe Torre, it would’ve been sweet to see the Dodgers win the world series over the Yanks.
    Mary

  24. Alex - Oct 22, 2009 at 9:17 AM

    they need to get rid of manny ramirez. period. he is terrible and a huge drain on their energy and resources. he will not produce without steroids and will constantly let his fans and his teammates down.

  25. John L. - Oct 22, 2009 at 9:18 AM

    Cards Fan –
    The Cardboards stunk. They got swept by the Codgers who stunk. Which team stank worse? Who cares about the past. Live in the present. Bring on the Yankers or the Angles and the Phightins’ will prevail. Phils will win The Series in Six.

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