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Ned Colletti calls out Matt Kemp

Apr 28, 2010, 12:12 PM EDT

colletti.jpgNed Colletti has determined that the best way to light a fire under the Dodgers is to rip Matt Kemp. After criticizing Kemp’s baserunning and defense to Peter Tilden of 790-KABC, he said:

“Why is it? Because he got a new deal? Can’t tell you. But you
know, it’s below-average. If this is the last day of the season and
people are voting for the Gold Glove, his name is not even on the
ballot. It’s a shame that he would go from where he was a year ago to
revert back to when the ball goes up in the air and you’re not sure
where it’s going, or if it’s going to get caught.”

I’ll grant that Kemp hasn’t been as stellar on defense this year as he was all last year, but if Ned Colletti thinks that the team is 8-12 because Kemp isn’t running everything down he’s nuts. The Dodgers are 8-12 because the only team with worse pitching in the National League is the Pittsburgh Pirates, who at least have the excuse of being the Pittsburgh Pirates. But even the Pirates didn’t place their hopes and dreams in Vicente Padilla and every Tom, Dick and Harry Ortiz who wandered into Camelback, Arizona between February and April. That’s all on you, Ned, so if you want to rip someone, take a long look in the mirror.

And when you’re done doing that, remember that no GM who calls himself a professional rips his own players in the media, let alone his best player. His best player who decided to go year-to-year though arbitration rather than sign a long term deal and thus could very well bolt in a couple of years if he decides that getting called out by the boss on a radio show is not the sort of franchise for whom he wishes to serve as a cornerstone.

This is low rent behavior from an organization that has been called a lot of things in its history, but never low rent. Colletti ought to be ashamed of himself.

  1. Roger Moore - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:25 PM

    I’m not sure if I’d say “low rent”; “classless” is closer to what I’d use. The best guess is that Colletti is upset because his team isn’t winning, and he’s lashing out at a convenient target. It’s dumb and unprofessional, but it’s hardly unheard of.

  2. Levi Stahl - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:32 PM

    And you didn’t even mention the mustache, which either means you thought it was beneath you or it’s lunchtime and you’re getting lightheaded.

  3. Grant - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:34 PM

    Kemp is hitting .294/.354/.588. That’s good for a 150 OPS+ from a center fielder. Colletti is a moron.

  4. NastyNate - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:44 PM

    Did you see the game last night? He jogged after a ball in the gap and let Jason Bay get a triple. Then on a routine fly ball in right center he let the man on first tag and go to second without a throw.

  5. YANKEES1996 - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:45 PM

    Ned Colletti calling out Matt Kemp is garbage, he should be calling out Frank McCourt. If they had been more financially stable in the off season they could have kept and signed some better pitching.

  6. Craig Calcaterra - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    Sure. And he should have his ass ripped for it. In the clubhouse. Not on Colletti’s radio show.

  7. Jimmy P - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:47 PM

    I wish my predecessor set me up with tons of talent so I could do nothing and then call out my best players. If Colletti were half as good at his job as Matt Kemp is at his, then Colletti could talk.

  8. BigTunaNY - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:48 PM

    He looks like the Weekend at Bernie’s guy’s fat cousin.

  9. Anon!Mice! - Apr 28, 2010 at 12:57 PM

    When the season started and I say Ramon AND Russ Ortiz on the starting roster, I told my Dodger friends to take the season off. Signing those guys was obviously Andre Ethier’s fault, so I expect Colletti to blast him next.
    Garret Anderson was Billingley’s fault.
    Captcha is genius: Economic Shells

  10. (Not That) Tom - Apr 28, 2010 at 1:10 PM

    The more important question is: what does Bill Plaschke think?

  11. Rachel - Apr 28, 2010 at 1:15 PM

    Duh, baseball is obviously a one-man game and, as Kemp is The Man in LA this year, it’s his sacred duty to secure every win himself! Colletti forgot to mention that that slacker’s been neglecting his pitching, catching, and cheerleading responsibilities as well… o_0

  12. Matt - Apr 28, 2010 at 1:25 PM

    The ballplayer did not run down the ball.
    The general manager sat, fuming.
    The ballplayer did not hold the runner.
    The general manager had enough.
    (continuing one sentence paragraph drivel)

  13. InnocentBystander - Apr 28, 2010 at 1:26 PM

    At least Coletti didn’t ask Kemp if his mom was a prostitute.

  14. Moses Green - Apr 28, 2010 at 2:00 PM

    Maybe it’s already been done and said behind closed doors, who knows. Matt Kemp’s UZR/150 (via Fangraphs) last year was plus 3.8. So far this year it’s -72.2, and he’s been by far the worst regular defensive centerfielder in all of baseball. Whatever you think of his airing of grievances, it wasn’t Ricciardian, i.e. at least he was correct.

  15. Old Gator - Apr 28, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    He looks more like Bernie’s methane-bloated corpse without the sunglasses and Hawaiian shirt.

  16. Eat a Peach - Apr 28, 2010 at 2:08 PM

    Maybe Colletti is resentful of Kemp as local competition for Moustache Rides. If he starts railing about Clay Zavada for no apparent reason someday we’ll know for sure.

  17. dprat - Apr 28, 2010 at 2:26 PM

    A 20 game UZR rating is pure noise, no signal… like the inside of Colletti’s head.

  18. scatterbrian - Apr 28, 2010 at 3:14 PM

    Moses, you need two to three years worth of UZR data to determine defensive skill at a position. As such, Kemp’s UZR through 18 games is an uber-tiny sample size. According to FanGraphs, he’s had only had 42 balls hit in his zone in 2010. The -72.2 definitely suggests he’s been awful, but saying “he’s been by far the worst regular defensive centerfielder in all of baseball” is an exaggeration and it’s premature to even talk about his defense in those terms. Further, it is wrong to use Kemp’s 2010 UZR to defend Colletti’s nonsense.

  19. Moses Green - Apr 28, 2010 at 4:24 PM

    I’m not a fan of GM’s airing out players in the press. I’m just saying … so far he doesn’t appear to be wrong, and since he watches the team every game I’ll have to take his word for it on the baserunning as well. The small sample size is a problem, but it also has guys ranked approximately how you would imagine them already with the exception of Kemp.
    I’m a Boston Celtic fan, and I’m still waiting for Rasheed Wallace to show up and “play his way into game shape.” These days off aren’t going to help.
    captcha “wearer financial”, suggesting who the cap fits, let them wear it. Big money + sudden deconditioning = Dog

  20. Moses Green - Apr 28, 2010 at 4:33 PM

    hee hee – moustache rides

  21. scatterbrian - Apr 28, 2010 at 4:43 PM

    “The small sample size is a problem, but it also has guys ranked approximately how you would imagine them already with the exception of Kemp.”
    That is perfect example of why small sample sizes suck.

  22. Moses Green - Apr 28, 2010 at 4:57 PM

    You’re like a dog with hyper-focus on just one bone. I even admitted that it’s a problem – I quit – no more tug of war – enjoy your bone.

  23. scatterbrian - Apr 28, 2010 at 5:08 PM

    I mean no offense, Moses. I’m at work with Dodger fans who are trying to defend Colletti, so I am kind of hyper-focused on it right now. Speaking of which, you’ve made two dog references on this thread….and I’m hyper-focused? 😛

  24. CharlyH - Apr 28, 2010 at 7:12 PM

    This really isn’t the GMs job to criticize players. It’s the coaches job to keep their players motivated. If Ned has a problem he should take up drinking, or smoking, or some other socially accepted habit that calms his nerves. Dan Evans was a good GM.

  25. The Rabbit - Apr 28, 2010 at 7:15 PM

    Yeah, the Dodgers have fairly well sucked but the rotation is not the same as it was last year. I haven’t watched all of the games but the Dodgers as a team seemed to be lethargic in the ones that I saw.
    The sign of poor management in every organization I’ve studied is publicly ripping individuals. Another sign of bad management is blaming the people you “hire” instead of looking at yourself and asking what you did to contribute to the situation.
    In summation, Ned Coletti is a horse’s a@@.

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