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And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

Mar 30, 2014, 11:31 PM EDT

Screen Shot 2014-03-30 at 11.38.41 PM Getty Images

Padres 3, Dodgers 1: The coolest thing about baseball is that all of us yakkers can spend two months talking about teams’ strengths and weaknesses and How It Will All Go, and then the games start and none of it matters one damn bit. Like the back end of the Dodgers’ bullpen, for example. Brian Wilson came in to protect a 1-0 lead, gave up a tying home run to pinch hitter Seth Smith and then a bunch of clownshoes play by Wilson and the other Dodgers allowed two more in and that was the game.

Yes, I do believe that over the course of 162 games the Dodgers bullpen — particularly Brian Wilson and Kenley Jansen — will be a team strength. So this isn’t me reading too much into one game at the expense of those 162 and thus tossing out previous predictions and analysis. But we don’t consume baseball over 162 games. We consume them one game at a time, and in those individual games, anything can happen. Like Brian Wilson getting lit up for three runs in the eighth. We can never predict that, even if we can predict what may happen in six months worth of his appearances. When all you can really know with even a moderate degree of certainty is how things will play out over long periods of time, the short periods of time become that much more exciting. Unless you were a Dodgers fan last night of course.

Tough luck for Hyun-Jin Ryu, who hardly broke a sweat in keeping the padres scoreless on three hits thought seven innings, while tossing only 88 pitches. If it’s later in the season he probably comes out for the eighth here. But dude, Wilson and Jansen! That’s how it was all planned out!

Well, Der mentsh trakht un Got lakht. As do the makers of the 162-game schedule.

Editor’s Note: Hardball Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $100,000 Fantasy Baseball league for Opening Day’s games (March 31). It’s $25 to join and first prize is $15,000. Starts at 1:05pm ET on Opening Day. Here’s the FanDuel link.

 

  1. number42is1 - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:12 PM

    “Der mentsh trakht un Got lakht.”

    First off WELCOME BACK TO ATH! sorely missed.

    that being said Craig you butchered that phrase…

    • raysfan1 - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:19 PM

      Guess neither German nor Yiddish spelling is his strong suit.

      • moogro - Mar 31, 2014 at 3:23 AM

        There is no set consensus on Yiddish spelling, especially as it filters through eastern Europe.

      • raysfan1 - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:34 AM

        I wasn’t being serious.

  2. skerney - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:14 PM

    lol beard

    • renaado - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:35 PM

      1st time you’ve seen one?

      • skerney - Mar 31, 2014 at 1:24 PM

        @renaado, since you’ve arrived here you have become progressively more irksome. If you’re going to troll me please attempt to be more annoying.

      • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:28 PM

        Well…. If you say so then.

  3. sdbunting - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    “clownshoes” +1

  4. historiophiliac - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:30 PM

    Does anyone else feel like they are coming down with that bug that’s been going around? Cough cough

    • brewcrewchamps - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:39 PM

      I do feel it…yeah im not going to work tomorrow

    • 4d3fect - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:04 AM

      *koff koff*

      “I think I’ve got the black lung, Pop”

      • thedoubleentandres - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:54 AM

        Mer-man…MerMAAAAN!!

    • ltzep75 - Mar 31, 2014 at 1:21 AM

      During court scheduling last week:

      Opponent: “How about March 31?”

      Other people: “I’m free that date.”

      Me: “I have a conflict.”

      Opponent: “What?”

      Me: “Opening day.”

    • nbjays - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:42 AM

      I hear ya, Historio. It must be baseball fever (can’t be spring fever, still looks like midwinter here). Next weekend is the Jays’ home opener against the Empire, and I’m on call and can’t leave the house all weekend :-D

    • sportsdrenched - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:51 AM

      I gave up that charade years ago. Usually I just take the day off and they know why. Except today, I’m just taking a long lunch. Saving the PTO to go to a weekday, day game this year.

  5. ch0psuey - Mar 30, 2014 at 11:39 PM

    Not only called Seth Smiths HR, I used jedi mind tricks on Chris Denorfia to make him hit a 2 rbi hit up the middle yesterday ” http://s23.postimg.org/gcm3ipwp7/0329141448.jpg

  6. 4d3fect - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:09 AM

    also, ATH! OMG!

    • infieldhit - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:31 AM

      IKR?

      • number42is1 - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:12 AM

        LOL!

  7. apkyletexas - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:14 AM

    Might want to give Padres’ starting pitcher Andrew Cashner just a tiny bit of respect. That’s his 6th start with 0 or 1 earned runs over 6+ innings in his last 7 games. He allowed 2 earned runs over 7.2 innings in his one other start during that stretch.

    • gloccamorra - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:33 AM

      That’s actually Cashner’s fault. He’s the one who wants to pitch in Petco, and nobody can score there, unless the other team is wearing clown shoes. That’s because Petco was built where the upscale “ladies of the evening” worked (the low priced LOTE’s worked in the Stingaree slums). Legend has it that when they were forced out, one madam declared, “If we can’t score here, NOBODY will score here.” They had no idea a ballpark would be built on the site of those “homes of entertainment” a century later.

  8. baseballisboring - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    Great game.

    AGHOGHRUGAHHH BASEBALL’S BACK GURHGUWHGGAHHHHH BASEBALL’S BACK BASEBALL’S BACK ASHUWHGhahshahghduHU BASEBALL’S BACK!

    • historiophiliac - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:25 AM

      I’ll be honest, I thought it was a snoozer at first. I was afraid we might have to go into extra innings to have a winner and was kind of disappointed after the long off-season to start with a dud. It picked up though, and the end was exciting. You don’t see guys get to Wilson like that often. I might have enjoyed it more if the announcers I was listening to were better.

      • gloccamorra - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:36 AM

        The Padres threatened to break open the game in each of the first two innings. I’ll bet Don Mattingly was wide awake then.

      • baseballisboring - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:48 AM

        I tend to like pitcher’s duels. I was entertained.

      • historiophiliac - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:52 AM

        I like pitcher’s duels too, but they are significantly better in the American League.

      • ltzep75 - Mar 31, 2014 at 1:23 AM

        I like politician’s duels. More finality to them.

      • moogro - Mar 31, 2014 at 3:18 AM

        Wilson clearly didn’t have it and shouldn’t have pitched to Denorfia. Saving some face trumps pulling the reliever…again.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Mar 31, 2014 at 4:16 AM

        Itzep, Burrrrrrr, it’s chilly outside.

    • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:36 AM

      Please change your user name….

      • baseballisboring - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:47 AM

        No

      • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:50 AM

        Whatever.

  9. wahoo21 - Mar 31, 2014 at 1:03 AM

    I watched wilson in the bullpen and two things stick out;
    1 – he is just a wierd dude….period. They are playing “God Bless America” and the guy is playing with his hair

    2- He has not much left in the tank…..arm slot was wierd, velocity was down and location was terrible.

    He doesn’t finish the year with LA

    • sportsdrenched - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:57 AM

      I am in the camp of “Closers have short shelf lives, with few exceptions.” Wilson is not one of those exceptions. While I’m sure he will be able to get guys out, he’ll be a shadow of his former self this year.

    • wahoo21 - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:46 PM

      I have to laugh at the 18 people who still think that Wilson has anything left…his own bullpen coach was shaking his head when he went into the game. He saw the same thing I did and then the rest of the people at Petco saw it shortly after. Why do you thnk the Giants let him walk?

  10. slystone111 - Mar 31, 2014 at 2:05 AM

    Man, the Dodgers suck balls.

    • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 2:10 AM

      I pretty sure that statement is wrong though.. It’s a close fight no one “sucked” there.

    • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 5:10 AM

      Wow… Just watched the full video of it just now….. Brian Wilson really isn’t himself in that game today..

    • historiophiliac - Mar 31, 2014 at 10:09 AM

      And, yet, they’ve won two games already. Remember? Australia? (I actually enjoyed those games more than last night’s — and not because I’m a Dodgers fan. I thought Miley’s performance was underrated, and I hate the Dbacks.)

  11. kiwicricket - Mar 31, 2014 at 3:25 AM

    ATH….Oh how I pined for you, like a long lost girlfriend.

    Welcome back.

    • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:03 AM

      I used to read And That Happened every AM in my office but I never commented before this off season. Now I’m glad its back and I’m looking forward to regular ATH more than I’d expected. I agree with the ‘long lost girlfriend”. I did miss ATH

      That said, this result wasn’t at all what I wanted. Brian Wilson getting knocked around was not part of the master plan. He fooled no one, looked terrible fielding his position, and lost the game that Ryu pitched so masterfully in. What is more, Adrian Gonzalez booted a grounder that was right at him. A serious lapse

      Puig was pretty good though. Pretty much no one was having much luck with Cashner and Puig and a few others got robbed by Petco’s horizon-esque fences, but Puig fielded well and even had a shot at an out field assist. I wish Hanley Ramirez had let that ball go on Puig’s throw from the outfield. It was right on line. Cabrera’s fast and likely beats it, but with the human element you never know how the call goes. We might even have had the season’s first replay review.

      Baseball is back :-)

      • spudchukar - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:23 AM

        He threw to the wrong base allowing Denorfia to advance to second. Some credit goes to Ryu for getting out of the jam, but Headley’s weak situational hitting approach, and Bochy’s bone-headed line-up certainly made things easier for him. It was a strong accurate throw, but it was over the cut-off guys head, and Puig needs to recognize the speed that was on first in Cabrera, and at the plate in Denorfia. Since Puig charged the ball well, and it was in short right field he gets some leeway with the cut-off throw, but not the wrong base. It wasn’t so close that it justified the try.

        I am a fan of Headley’s but that was a poor at bat in the first. He has to make contact when the infield is back, and the approach should be up the middle or preferably to the right side to produce a run and get Denorfia to third. Not only did he not fail to produce the run and advancement he made little effort. With the stuff Cashner was exhibiting a run or two could have made the difference, and Headley is a good enough hitter to do better, especially against a guy with Ryu’s style.

        Granted the one ball Puig hit well would have gone out in some parks, it was to the edge of the track, so it would have been an out in many too, it followed on a miserable “no swing” call that wasn’t even close, so he should have been rung up before.

      • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:37 AM

        I think you mean “Bud Black” not “Bochy” there. Anyhow, Puig was attempting to cut down the lead runner. Im all for the attempt, but perhaps holding Denorfia to 1st would have been the more prudent play. As for the warning track hit, I saw it as nearly up against the wall not edge of the warning track. The outfielder basically was within touching distance. Anyhow, I liked Puig’s aggression going for the runner. Aggressive baseball is fun to watch. Mattingly’s decisions to lay down bunts were far more ill advised. He gave up outs twice doing that.

      • spudchukar - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:12 AM

        Thanks for the managerial correction. It is 5:04 here so I will use the early hour as an excuse. The Puig throw was ill-advised, but not blunderously so. It isn’t like he air-mailed the cut-off, and with most runners it would be worth the shot, but Puig had his mind made up, and that is the crucial error. It was pretty clear, from his body language and demeanor he knew he didn’t make the correct choice. At least he recognized his mistake, due most likely to the many times he has been instructed to keep the runner at first.

        And like I wrote before, since the ball was hit sharply, and Puig wasn’t playing deep, and he did charge the one-hopper effectively, and his throw was on a line, and cut-offable it wasn’t one of his more egregious misplays. But when one has a history of making that mistake, that magnifies the decision.

      • spudchukar - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:22 AM

        As to the bunts. It is well-established here that bunting is taboo. And often the criticism is valid. But two things, both of which I have argued vigorously before. All runs are not equal, and psychology makes a greater degree of difference than more “mathematical” minds like to admit.

        The Padres were at home, with their ace throwing well, in a large park. All factors. Getting a lead, no matter how small changes how a pitcher can pitch. A one or two run edge, allows him to be more aggressive in the strike zone, allows defenders to be less afraid of committing an error, and takes pressure off hitters in some situations.

        Yes, bunting detracts from the chances of having bigger innings, and over the long haul produces fewer runs. But not all runs are alike, as I said. Bunting certainly can be counter-productive, and modern metrics have had an influence, and justifiably so. However, getting an early lead with your ace on the mound, at home probably outweighs the play for a big inning.

        On the warning track thing, I saw the right-fielder go to the edge of the track, take one step back onto it, and then move forward as he made the catch. Nitpicking, probably, but that is how I remember it.

      • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:34 AM

        Your bunting argument plays into Puig’s defence. All runs are not equal and in Petco, against a hard throwing ace, getting the lead runner is vital, especially if he’s fast. At this point I’m sure Puig’s getting a mite self conscious about mistakes. No matter what he does he gets criticized. I’m putting my faith in Ramirez’s expression and Uribe’s glare at the cut off not Puig’s look. THEY thought the throw was on line and might have got the runner.

        Its unsurprising that we recall subtly different versions of the warning track hit. I am reminded of what a local police officer friend says about eye witness testimony. People see what they want to see and will alter what they saw to fit a story. Its not lying or subterfuge its just the way the mind works. I want to see an out at the wall. You want to see an edge of the warning track out. One of us is probably more correct than the other but its the way our memories want it.

      • spudchukar - Mar 31, 2014 at 10:01 AM

        While I was thinking similarly about the depth of Puig’s drive to the track, it does not come to mind on the throw. Cabrera was already sliding when Ramirez cut the throw off. As I have repeatedly said, it does not rise to the level of bone-headed, but it was an error none the less, and in regard to the justification due to the likelihood that the game would be close, it doesn’t wash.

        First, that is a couple of degrees beyond what could be expected of a seasoned veteran to cognate much less a second year rookie who has shown a tendency to be less than cerebral.

        And I don’t think it actually should be brought into the equation, because the same the same run you hope to eliminate at third you are allowing to go to second, and two runs allowed in the first is just as damaging as one.

        And while psychologically it would have been a boon to the Dodgers and Puig, the downside outweighs the positive, unless you are certain you have a great shot at the runner, and with Cabrera running that certainty should be severely limited.

        It is true that I “want” the Dodgers to fail, and that includes Puig, cause he performs for them, but I don’t want him to fail personally, and am actually rooting for him to develop his wonderful talents fully.
        That won’t stop me from pointing out his mistakes be they major or minor, as I would any other player.

      • spudchukar - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:33 AM

        Holy Cow, as some announcer used to say, am I ever screwed up. Yes, Bud Black is the manager of the Padres, and no Mattingly was not at home, and his ace wasn’t on the hill. So I bungled, booted, mis-played and errored, however, I am 63, sotted, burned-out and half-asleep, excuses Puig et al cannot make.

        So yeah, when Mattingly decided to bunt wasn’t as justified as had been Black in a similar situation, which didn’t present itself, but the bunting theory explanation stands no matter how dis-concordant it may be.

      • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:40 AM

        I also plead age. I didn’t catch the subtleties of who you were referring to with your comments. They hold for either manager, you know. Your argument ins valid either way. One or two runs in that park, with those pitchers, probably wins the game. Either cutting down the lead runner or pushing across runner is served by the same argument.

      • infieldhit - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:37 AM

        “but with the human element you never know how the call goes.”

        Now we do!

        But it was funny seeing Uribe and Ramirez awkwardly staring at each for the longest time before the camera cut away. It almost looked like the broadcast signal froze up.

      • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:40 AM

        Uribe was basically giving Hanley the evil eye there. “Dude! Why you cut that off? I think we had him!” And when Hanley checked the line he caught that ball on the look on his face was priceless “Oops. That was right on line. I think Yasiel had a shot at him. My bad.”

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:52 AM

        So I bungled, booted, mis-played and errored

        So you Puig’d?

        -Plaschke

  12. nothanksimdriving123 - Mar 31, 2014 at 4:18 AM

    So before Ryu, who was the last MLB pitcher to start 2 of his team’s first 3 games in a season? I’m guessing Old Hoss.

    • infieldhit - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:42 AM

      With all these overseas opening series of late, I’m guess it happens rather often.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Mar 31, 2014 at 3:45 PM

        I don’t recall any of those leaving a weeklong gap enabling a starter to repeat in a 3-game span. So I’m still guessing it’s been a long time. Experts? Historians? Elias? Bueller?

  13. @thekid9ball - Mar 31, 2014 at 4:41 AM

    Fear the used to be guy with a beard…nice

    • renaado - Mar 31, 2014 at 5:12 AM

      Fear the guy that used to be “The Beard”.

      • @thekid9ball - Mar 31, 2014 at 5:30 AM

        Use to be…exactly

  14. @thekid9ball - Mar 31, 2014 at 4:45 AM

    Reblogged this on The Fantasy Forensic and commented:
    Fear the has been with beard…he was kind of intimidating for like 7mos. They better have a plan B ..Smith was mailing that ball to Saturn

  15. philliesblow - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:21 AM

    Thumb harpie is off to a strong start today. Obviously should have been included on the BSoHL list.

    • thetoolsofignorance - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:34 AM

      Whoever that person is messing around with the voting feature they are like a badge of honor here. Its seems if you are at all a forward thinking, relatively honest, stat oriented, reasonably fair, creative writer that person hates you. I am looking forward to the day when I will also rack up double digits down thumbs. It will mean I am doing something right.

    • happytwinsfan - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:13 AM

      yeah, and think about the effort that’s required to stuff the ballot box as much as he does. one would have to create a zillion log ons, requiring the creation of a zillion fake email addresses, and keeping open a zillion browser tabs, all on the same thread.

      thumb harpie has WTW, grit and clutch!

    • historiophiliac - Mar 31, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      a Raven’s fan

  16. ptfu - Mar 31, 2014 at 9:38 AM

    Yasmani Grandal stole third! Seriously, a slow catcher coming off ACL surgery STOLE THIRD BASE for his first stolen base ever on any professional level!

    Baseball, it’s good to have you back.

    • ch0psuey - Mar 31, 2014 at 11:27 AM

      I posted earlier about ages between the padres and Dodgers. I gotta think Uribe being 35 had a small small part in Grandal taking third , :)

  17. jburk003 - Mar 31, 2014 at 12:24 PM

    Dodgers are gonna finish in 2nd place, just watch.

    High expectations come at you when have the highest bankroll in baseball. And that gives teams an extra incentive to beat you

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