Friday, October 31, 2008

HOW KOBE BRYANT SPENT HIS SUMMER VACATION


Fox Sports WEST Debuts “Lakers Insider: Kobe Bryant - How I Spent My Summer Vacation” on November 5 at 10:30 PM

Los Angeles - In this edition of “Lakers Insider”, Fox Sports WEST follows the NBA’s reigning MVP, Kobe Bryant, in what may have arguably been his busiest summer to date. “Lakers Insider: Kobe Bryant – How I Spent My Summer Vacation” debuts on Wednesday, November 5 at 10:30 PM following “Lakers Live” post-game coverage of the Los Angeles Clippers at the Los Angeles Lakers.

In one 24-hour period, Bryant juggled his personal fitness routine and time with his family with a promotional appearance for his new Nike shoe, speaking at his annual youth basketball camp and playing in a friendly coach’s scrimmage game for the campers. “Lakers Insider: Kobe Bryant – How I Spent My Summer Vacation” is anchored by Fox Sports WEST and PRIME TICKET Reporter Michael Eaves’ interview with Bryant. Following is a sampling of soundbites from the show:

Whether Bryant was concerned his commitment to Team USA would affect his 2008-09 Lakers performance: “If this was a couple years ago, yes, yeah, a couple of years ago I would have had to put 35 points up in a game. I don’t do that anymore. I’ve got a lot of help. That concern is not there.”

On taking his family to Beijing: “I would love for my kids to see what greatness looks like from all across the board, from swimmers, to archers, to track and field.”

Why he enjoys interacting with the kids at his basketball camp: “For me, when I was a camper growing up, it was always about the interaction that I had with the professional players that came down, or the big time college players, and having an opportunity to ask them questions personally. Face-to-face interaction was more important to me than anything else.”

In addition to conducting a one-on-one interview with Bryant, Eaves provides voice over narration for the half-hour show, which includes footage from the youth basketball camp, the scrimmage game, viral videos of jumping cars and aquatic snakes, promoting his new Nike shoe, and promotional appearances with fans.

Following its November 5 debut, “Lakers Insider: Kobe Bryant – How I Spent My Summer Vacation” reprises on Saturday, November 8 at 10:30 PM; Thursday, November 13 at 10 PM; Friday, November 14 at 1:30 AM; Sunday, November 23 at 9:30 PM; Tuesday, November 25 at 6:30 PM; and, Wednesday, November 26 at 10 PM.

# # #

HIROKI KURODA TO DONATE $100,000 TO DODGERS DREAM FOUNDATION


Right-hander seeking to help find a cure for cancer while reaching out to youngsters

LOS ANGELES – The 2008 National League West Division Champion Los Angeles Dodgers announced today that right-hander Hiroki Kuroda will donate $100,000 to the Dodgers Dream Foundation, including a portion that will benefit the team’s official charity, ThinkCure!

“Since coming to Los Angeles, I have been very impressed with the great work of the Dodgers Dream Foundation in helping kids in so many ways,” said Kuroda. “I saw the incredible efforts of ThinkCure! during our visit to City of Hope and I, myself, have lost my parents to cancer and hope that this will help eliminate this terrible disease.”

Kuroda joined the Dodgers in 2008 following a successful 11-year career in the Japanese Central League. While with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp, he would leave 15 tickets per game for children who had lost their parents.

He became the seventh Japanese player in Dodger history when he won his Major League debut on April 4. The right-hander went on to post a 9-10 record and was one of just 19 pitchers in the National League to register an ERA below 3.75.

In the postseason, Kuroda made two starts and earned victories in each of them, pitching 6.1 scoreless innings in the deciding Game 3 of the National League Division Series against Chicago before allowing two earned runs in 6.0 innings of the Dodgers’ lone victory against the eventual World Champion Phillies in the National League Championship Series.

Kuroda’s arrival was met with great anticipation, as his introductory news conference was attended by more than 50 media outlets from around the world.

Shortly after coming to Los Angeles, he took part in the Dodgers’ Community Caravan in February, where he visited patients at City of Hope, which along with Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, has joined with the Dodgers in the creation of ThinkCure! In addition, Kuroda visited Washington Accelerated Elementary in Pasadena and served Dodger fans lunch alongside his teammates, as he was a “waiter” at the Panda Inn.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Cottrell Out, Rivera In As Defensive Coordinator


The San Diego Chargers announced today that Inside Linebackers Coach Ron Rivera has been named the team’s new defensive coordinator following the termination of Defensive Coordinator Ted Cottrell.

Rivera is in his second season in San Diego after spending the previous three seasons (2004-06) as the defensive coordinator of the Chicago Bears. In 2006, the Bears finished fifth in overall defense, third in scoring defense and led the NFL with 44 takeaways on their way to appearing in Super Bowl XLI.

Cottrell was on the Chargers’ staff in 2007-08.


ANGELS EXERCISE 2009 OPTIONS ON VLADIMIR GUERRERO AND JOHN LACKEY


CLUB DECLINES 2009 OPTION ON GARRET ANDERSON

Additionally, Gary Matthews Jr., Mike Napoli and Guerrero Undergo Surgeries



ANAHEIM, CA - The Angels Tuesday announced the club will exercise 2009 options on Vladimir Guerrero and John Lackey and decline the 2009 option on Garret Anderson.

Additionally, Gary Matthews Jr. and Mike Napoli will undergo surgeries this week. Guerrero underwent successful surgery on the medial meniscus in his left knee earlier this month. These announcements were made today by Angels’ General Manager Tony Reagins.


Guerrero, 32, had surgery on the medial meniscus in his left knee on October 10th at the Steadman-Hawkins Clinic in Vail, CO. The surgery was performed by Dr. Richard Steadman. Guerrero is expected to be ready for Spring Training. In 2008, the veteran batted .303 (164/541) with 31 doubles, three triples, 27 home runs and 91 RBI in 143 games in 2008. He logged a .300 average and at least 25 home runs for the 11th consecutive season, joining Lou Gehrig (1927-37) as the only two players in MLB history to do so. An eight-time All-Star, Guerrero owns a club-best .323 average in five seasons as an Angel. Originally signed by the Montreal Expos as a free agent (March 1, 1993), the Dominican Republic native is hitting .323 (2136/6617) overall with 404 doubles, 43 triples, 392 home runs and 1268 RBI in 1,750 major league games.


Lackey, 30, completed 2008 with a 12-5 record, three complete games and a 3.75 ERA (163.1 IP – 68 ER) in 23 starts, posting 40 walks and 130 strikeouts. He began the season on the 15-day disabled list due to a strained right triceps and was activated May 14 (his first-ever DL appearance). In his career, Lackey is 91-63 with 13 complete games, seven shutouts and a 3.81 ERA (1,324.2 IP – 562 ER). An MLB All-Star in 2007, he owns the third-lowest ERA (based on 600 IP) in the AL since 2005 (3.42; 814 IP – 309 ER). A native of Abilene, Texas, Lacked was originally selected by the Angels in the second round of the 1999 free agent draft.


Anderson, 36, batted .293 (163/557) with 15 home runs and 84 RBI in 145 games in 2008. The longest tenured Angel in 2008, he marked his 14th full season with the club and his 14th consecutive season batting .280 or better (only other MLB active player to do this is Manny Ramirez). A three-time All-Star, Anderson ranks as the Angels’ all-time leader in several categories, including games (2,013), runs (1,024), hits (2,368), doubles (489), total bases (3,743) and RBI (1,292). Anderson ranks second in home runs (272) and third in career average (.296). A native of Los Angeles, CA, he was originally signed by the Angels after being a fourth round selection in the 1990 June free agent draft.


Matthews Jr., 34, will have surgery to repair the patella tendon in his left knee today (October 28th). He posted a .242 average (103/426) with 19 doubles, three triples, eight home runs and 46 RBI in 127 games in 2008. Signed by the Angels as a Major League free agent, Nov. 22, 2006, he has played for seven different major league teams (also San Diego, Chicago Cubs, Pittsburgh, New York Mets, Baltimore and Texas). Originally selected by the Padres in the 13th round of the 1993 June free agent draft, Matthews Jr. owns a .259 career average (966/3729) with 203 doubles, 27 triples, 104 home runs and 433 RBI in 1,142 major league games (spanning over eight seasons). A native of San Francisco, CA, he is the son of Gary Matthews Sr., who played 16 years in the majors for the Giants, Braves, Phillies, Cubs and Mariners.


Napoli will have arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder October 31st (his 27th birthday). In 2008, he split catching duties with Jeff Mathis and made 71 starts behind the plate. Napoli batted .273 (62/227) with nine doubles, one triple, 20 home runs and 49 RBI, setting career highs in average, hits, home runs, RBI and stolen bases (7). He was placed on the disabled list, July 7, due to right shoulder irritation (and was activated, Aug.7). In his career, Napoli owns a .248 average (177/714) with 33 doubles, two triples, 46 home runs and 125 RBI in 252 major league games. A native of Hollywood, FL, he was originally selected by the Angels in the 17th round of the 2000 free agent draft.


-- ANGELS --

MLB.com Seeking Interns


Company: MLB.com
Position: Seeking 30 sports interns
Location:All major league cities, United States
Salary: Paid Intern
Ad Expires: November 12, 2008
Job ID: 839457


Want an exciting summer of covering Major League Baseball? MLB.com offers 30 reporting internships to aspiring sportswriters. These internships are designed to give associates the full range of experiences that comes with covering a professional team. Each associate will work closely with a site reporter to give visitors to a team’s Web site all the information they need to follow the team from Opening Day to season’s end. Each Major League club will have one associate reporter.

We will be looking for talented college juniors and seniors, as well as graduate students, for our 2008 Summer Internship Program. You must be a student in the Fall 2008 semester to be eligible. The application deadline for all internships is Nov. 30. We expect each intern to spend a minimum of 10 weeks in the program, dates determined by a person’s college schedule. Also, the more flexible an applicant is in terms of which Major League city he or she can work in, the better the person’s chances of being selected. Our associated reporters are paid $500/week.

Applicants should submit a resume, 5 to 10 published articles (no columns should be included), a list of references and a 750-word essay on why MLB.com should pick you? Please use the essay as a way of showing your creativity as a writer; in short, it should be more than a simple cover letter.Associates are responsible for arranging their own housing and transportation.

Please mail all internship applications to:
Bill Hill
Assistant Managing Editor/MLB.com
Attn: Internship Application
14825 N. 97th Place
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

If you have any questions, contact Bill Hill at bill.hill@MLB.com and put the words “Internship Info” in the subject line.

Monday, October 27, 2008

LAKERS WAIVE COBY KARL


I am not that surprised by this news as I was under the impression from some Laker insiders that Karl would not make the roster in favor of Joe Crawford. However, it appears as if having flexibility on the roster was of greater importance than keeping either one of these players aboard.



EL SEGUNDO - The Los Angeles Lakers have waived free agent guard Coby Karl, it was announced today.

Karl, who was signed by the Lakers as an undrafted rookie free agent on July 30, 2007, appeared in 17 games last season, averaging 1.8 points and 0.8 rebounds in 4.2 minutes.

Karl also played in 17 games with the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League last season where he averaged 17.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.1 steals in 37.6 minutes while posting a .411 3-point field goal percentage. In the D-Fenders’ two playoff games, Karl averaged 13.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 2.0 steals in 37.0 minutes.

Karl, a 6-5 guard from Boise State, averaged 14.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.0 assists as a senior and was named First Team All-WAC. Karl’s 1,698 career points ranks third on Boise State’s all-time scoring list while leaving Boise State as the all-time leader in games played (127) and three-pointers made (266).

Sunday, October 26, 2008

DEROZAN LEADS USC WITH 29 POINTS IN CARDINAL & GOLD GAME


- Three Trojans post double-doubles -

LOS ANGELES – Freshman DeMar DeRozan scored 29 points to lead the Gold team to a 90-74 victory over the Cardinal team at the annual Cardinal and Gold Scrimmage held today (Oct. 26) at the Galen Center.
Juniors Daniel Hackett and Taj Gibson added 18 and 16 points respectively for the Gold team while freshman Leonard Washington led the Cardinal team with 20 points.

DeRozan led all scorers at the half with 13 points on 4-for-6 shooting from the fl oor and 5-for-5 from the line as the Gold team built a 44-27 lead at the break. The Cardinal squad mounted a late comeback in the second half as redshirt freshman Mamadou Diarra scored 12 of his 16 points and eight of his 12 rebounds after halftime to cut the margin to 75-65 with 4:45 to go, but they would get no closer.

Diarra along with junior Alex Stepheson (14 points, 10 rebounds and 4 blocks) and Gibson (16 points, 10 rebounds and 3 blocks) all posted double-doubles.

DeRozan, a 2008 McDonald’s All-American, scored his 29 points on 10-for-16 shooting and added three rebounds, two assists and two steals.

In addition to his 18 points for the Gold team, Hackett grabbed eight rebounds, had fi ve assists and three steals.

Also scoring in double fi gures in the game for the Gold team were senior forward Keith Wilkinson with 11 and redshirt freshman James Dunleavy with 10 points.

Sophomore transfer guard Donte Smith had eight points and two assists and freshman guard Percy Miller had four points, four rebounds and two steals for the Carindal team.

USC hosted its annual Dribble For The Cure charity event before the game to raise funds for pediatric cancer research and treatment.

USC will host Azusa Pacifi c in an exhibition game in the Galen Center on Nov. 3 at 7:30 p.m. and then open the regular season against UC Irvine on Nov. 15 in the Galen Center at 12:30 p.m.


Oct. 26, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

LeBron James And Jay-Z To Host Rally For Obama


As I noted in an earlier post, today's high-profile professional athletes seem to stay away from political and social causes out of fear of losing endorsements. But this recent AP story reveals that LeBron James does not hold such reservations.


Oct 23rd, 2008 CLEVELAND -- NBA superstar LeBron James and Grammy-winning recording artist Jay-Z want people to get out early to vote for Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.

James and Jay-Z will host a rally Wednesday at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland which will include a free concert by the hip-hop star.

James attended a Cleveland rally earlier this month to encourage people to vote for Obama. He's also contributed $20,000 to a committee supporting the presidential nominee.

UPDATE: I recently came across an article in the Washington Post talking about this very subject. Check it out: Jock The Vote: NBA Players Raise Their Voices

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lakers Set Final Roster At 15


In the final days leading up to this final roster move by the Lakers, there was talk that second-round pick Joe Crawford might make the team instead of Coby Karl. However, it appears Crawford did not show Phil Jackson and the coaching staff enough of his skills and potential to merit keeping him on the team.

EL SEGUNDO - The Los Angeles Lakers have requested waivers on guard Joe Crawford and forward CJ Giles, it was announced today.

Selected by the Lakers with the 58th pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, Crawford, a 22 year-old native of Detroit, Michigan, played four seasons at the University of Kentucky, averaging 11.3 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 127 games (76 starts). In six preseason games with the Lakers, Crawford averaged 2.8 points in 7.3 minutes.

Giles, a 6-11 forward who finished his collegiate career at Oregon State after playing two seasons at Kansas, averaged 6.3 points and 5.6 rebounds in ten games last season for the Beavers. Giles played in four preseason games with the Lakers where he averaged 2.0 points and 2.5 rebounds in 7.2 minutes.

The Lakers preseason roster now stands at 15.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Clippers Pick Up Thornton's Contract Option



This news is far from a shocker. With the departures of Elton Brand and Corey Maggette, the Clippers see Al Thornton as the future foundation of this franchise.

The Los Angeles Clippers today exercised the club’s third year contract option on forward Al Thornton.

Thornton, who was selected by the Clippers as the 14th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, begins his second NBA season and is now signed through the 2009-10 campaign. Under the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, the Clippers had the right to exercise this contract option. Thornton will now become a restricted free agent following the 2009-10 season, with the Clippers holding the right of first refusal.

In his first season with the Clippers, Thornton was named to the T-Mobile NBA All-Rookie First Team, after averaging 12.7 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 27.3 minutes in 79 games played. He finished the year ranked second among all rookies in scoring, fourth in three-point field goal percentage (.429), eighth in rebounding and fifth in minutes per game. Thornton turned in his most impressive performance of the season when he tied a Clipper rookie record for points in a game, pouring in 39 points on 3/29/08 vs. Memphis. The 39 points were also the most points scored in a game by any NBA rookie last season.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Obama Takes Heat For Possible Delay Of World Series Game


Check out this story from CNN about how Barack Obama's 30-minute infomercial to the nation might push back the start of a World Series game.

(CNN) – The Republican National Committee took aim at Barack Obama Wednesday over the Illinois senator's half-hour ad buy that will delay the start of a World Series game by 18 minutes.

"It’s unfortunate that the World Series’ first pitch is being delayed for Obama’s political pitch," RNC spokesman Alex Conant said. "Not only is Obama putting politics before principle, he’s putting it before our national pastime.”

Major League Baseball has agreed to a request from Fox to delay the start time of Game 6 of the World Series (if a Game 6 is necessary) so the network can air the 30-minute Obama spot, a Fox spokesman confirms to CNN. The Illinois senator has also bought similar time on CBS and NBC, set to begin at 8 p.m.

“FOX will accommodate Senator Obama's desire to communicate with voters in this…format," Fox spokesman Scott Gorgin said. "We are pleased that Major League Baseball has agreed to delay the first pitch of World Series Game 6 for a few minutes in order for FOX to carry his program on October 29."

It's the first time a presidential candidate has bought that length of airtime on network television since Ross Perot purchased several 30 minute blocs in 1992.

"This is a big platform, this is a big megaphone, the interest level is clearly there and people will watch," Evan Tracey of Campaign Media Analysis Group, CNN's consultant on campaign advertising said.

The October 29 game will now start at 8:38 instead of 8:20.

Dodgers Daily Notes And Lineups--NLCS Game 5


DO-OR-DIE TIME – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 5 of the NLCS at Dodger Stadium, with Philadelphia leading, 3-1. First pitch is scheduled for 5:22 p.m. PT.

WHAT HAS TO BE DONE – The Dodgers will have to win three consecutive games to advance to the World Series. During the 2008 regular season, Los Angeles won three straight games on 10 occasions then repeated the feat in the NLDS.

► The Dodgers will also need to win consecutive road games, something that they accomplished 17 times during the regular season and again in the NLDS.

THEY’VE BEEN THERE AND DONE THAT – Since the LCS became a seven-game series in 1985, 26 teams have taken a 3-1 advantage and six times, the team that trailed has come back to win – the 1996 Braves (with Greg Maddux), the 2003 Marlins (with Juan Pierre), the 1986, 2004, and 2007 Red Sox (with the latter two teams featuring Derek Lowe in ’04 and Manny Ramirez in both series), and the 1985 Royals.

► Five teams have overcome a 3-1 deficit in the postseason after losing Game 4 at home – the 1958 Yankees, the 1968 Tigers, and the 1979 Pirates all did it in the World Series, while the 1985 Royals and 2003 Marlins did it in the League Championship Series.
Source: retrosheet.org

IF AT FIRST – The Dodgers have scored in the first inning in four of their seven postseason games in 2008. In fact, the Dodgers are batting .330 in the first six innings of the LCS and just .111 from the seventh inning on. Source: STATS, LLC

HEADING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION – From 1995-2006, the Dodgers posted a 1-12 record over four postseason appearances. So far this year, Los Angeles is 4-3.

BUCKING THE TREND - The Dodgers and Phillies have played 12 times this season and Monday night marked the first game that was not won by the home team, with Philadelphia taking seven of the 12 games overall.

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez drove in a run in Game 4 for an eighth consecutive LCS game, extending his Major League record. He now has nine RBI during the 2008 postseason and 73 in his career, which ranks second all-time behind Bernie Williams (80). Ramirez has hit safely in 42 of his last 47 postseason games, with a .360 (63-for-175) average during that span. His teams are 59-43 overall in the postseason.

► Ramirez is batting .500 (6-for-12) during this series. The Dodgers’ NLCS record for batting average (minimum 10 at-bats) is Dusty Baker, who hit .467 (7-for-15) during the 1978 NLCS vs. Philadelphia.

► Ramirez’s six RBI this series is two shy of the Dodger series record held by Baker in the 1977 series, also against Philadelphia.

IN A YEAR THAT HAS BEEN SO IMPROBABLE… – On this date in 1988, an injured Kirk Gibson hit a two-run homer with two out in the bottom of the ninth inning at Dodger Stadium to give Los Angeles a 4-3 victory in Game 1 of the World Series over Oakland. The homer was later voted the Top Moment in Los Angeles Sports History.

LONE-STAR – James Loney is batting .308 (8-for-26) during the postseason with eight RBI, the second-highest total on the team behind Manny Ramirez (9). Loney has at least one hit in all seven of his career postseason starts.

AN ELECTION YEAR – Tonight marks the final presidential debate between Senators Barack Obama and John McCain prior to the November election. Los Angeles has reached the postseason in four of the last six election years (1988, 1996, 2004, and 2008), including their last World Championship just 19 days before George H.W. Bush won the 1988 general election. The Dodgers have also appeared in the World Series in the election years of 1956, 1952, 1920, and 1916.

BILLS BACK ON THE BUMP – Chad Billingsley takes the mound tonight at Dodger Stadium, where he has not lost since July 8. Since then, the right-hander is 6-0 with a 1.60 ERA in seven starts at home.

WHEN IT COUNTS – During the 2008 postseason, the Dodgers are batting .286 (20-for-70) with runners in scoring position, .342 (13-for-38) with RISP and two outs and .455 (5-for-11) with the bases loaded.

TOUCHING HOME – Rafael Furcal has scored five runs so far during the NLCS, two shy of the club record for a League Championship Series held by Steve Sax, who scored seven times against the Mets during the 1988 NLCS.

THE FIRST PITCH – Tonight’s ceremonial first pitch will be thrown out by Hall of Fame Manager and Special Advisor to the Chairman Tommy Lasorda. Lasorda guided Los Angeles to four National League pennants, eight division titles and two World Championships during an extraordinary 20-year career as skipper.


LINEUPS:
Phillies:

Rollins. SS
Werth. RF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Victorino. CF
Feliz. 3B
Ruiz. C
Hamels. LHP

Dodgers:

Furcal. SS
Ethier. RF
Ramirez. LF
Martin. C
Loney. 1B
Blake. 3B
Kemp. CF
DeWitt. 2B
Billingsley. RHP

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Obama Is In The Game



From the time he first entered the race for the presidency, Barack Obama and his campaign managers have recognized the importance of new media. And that recognition has played a major part in Obama being in position to be elected to office.

Beyond just a website, Obama's campaign has been using popular social networking sites such as youtube, Facebook, MySpace and Twitter to build a broad base of support. And nowhere has this effort shown more results than with young voters.

However, the Obama campaign is not stopping there. Check out this story about Obama becoming the first presidential candidate to buy advertising inside a video game!

Obama and his campaign staff are quickly redefining modern political strategy.


By Devlin Barrett
updated 1:55 p.m. PT, Tues., Oct. 14, 2008

WASHINGTON - Too busy playing video games to watch presidential ads on television? Barack Obama has found you, too, by becoming the first presidential candidate to buy ad space inside a game.

Nine video games from Electronic Arts Inc., ranging from the extremely popular "Madden 09" football game to the street racing "Burnout: Paradise," feature in-game ads from the Obama campaign. The ads — they appear on billboards and other signage — remind players that early voting has begun and plug a campaign Web site.

The idea of embedding advertising temporarily inside a video game is relatively new, having only begun about 18 months ago, and Obama is the first presidential candidate to buy space, company officials said.

Monday, October 13, 2008

NLCS Game 4 Lineups

The Dodger Daily Notes are basically the same as yesterday, but the big news today is that Juan Pierre is starting in centerfield in place of Matt Kemp. Pierre will bat 8th in the lineup. Here's a look at both lineups for Game 4.


Phillies:


Rollins. SS
Werth. RF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Victorino. CF
Dobbs. 3B
Ruiz. C
Blanton. RHP


Dodgers:


Furcal. SS
Ethier. RF
Ramirez. LF
Martin. C
Loney. 1B
DeWitt. 2B
Blake. 3B
Pierre. CF
Lowe. RHP

NBA To Cut 80 Jobs



As the economy continues to struggle, moves like this one by the NBA may become somewhat of a norm. It will also be interesting to see how individual teams are affected as well.

LONDON -- The NBA is laying off 9 percent of its work force over worries about the U.S. economy, commissioner David Stern said.

"We made a decision some months ago that the economy was going to be a bit wobbly, so we began a belt-tightening that will result in a work-force reduction of about 9 percent domestically," Stern said Sunday, speaking before an NBA preseason game at London's O2 arena.

This translates into about 80 jobs, he later told Reuters.

"There is a season-ticket renewal rate decline, and new sales are also being hit," he said. "My guess is when [the regular season] kicks off, we will be down modestly in season ticket sales."

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Dodgers Daily Notes and Lineups--NLCS Game 3


MAKING A RUN FOR THE PENNANT – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 3 of the NLCS at Dodger Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 5:22 p.m. PT.

► Tonight’s game is the first NLCS game at Dodger Stadium in exactly 20 years. Game 7 of the 1988 NLCS vs. New York was on Oct. 12, 1988. Orel Hershiser, who is broadcasting tonight’s game for ESPN Radio, shut out the New York Mets, 6-0 to capture the National League pennant for the Dodgers.

THE NATIONAL LEAGUE’S HOTTEST TEAMS – Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-10 (.688) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the second-best winning percentage in the National League during that period, behind only the Phillies (24-9, .727).

The Dodgers and Phillies have played 10 games this season and each has been won by the home team, with Philadelphia taking six of the 10.

NO NEED TO PANIC – Prior to this season, the Dodgers had appeared in the National League Championship Series seven times and have never dropped the first two games. However, of the franchise’s 18 World Series appearances, the team has lost the first two games of a Fall Classic seven times. On three occasions have they lost the first two games and come back to win a seven-game series – during the 1955, 1965, and 1981 World Series.

► In all three of those series, the first two games were on the road and the Dodgers rebounded to win three straight at home.

HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS – The Dodgers were 23-9 (.719) at Dodger Stadium after the All-Star break for the best home record in the Majors in that span. The .719 winning percentage at home in the second half was the club’s second-best since coming to Los Angeles behind only the 1991 squad that went 29-11 (.725) at home after the break.

RECORD-SETTING INFIELD – Tonight’s ceremonial first pitches will be thrown out by Steve Garvey, Davey Lopes, Bill Russell, and Ron Cey, who played together with the Dodgers for a Major League-record 8 ½ seasons. The quartet appeared in four World Series, including the World Championship team of 1981. Lopes currently serves as the first base coach for the Phillies, Garvey and Cey work in the Dodgers’ front office, and Russell works for Major League Baseball’s umpiring division.

BATTLED TESTED – Nomar Garciaparra has appeared in the LCS twice with Boston in 1999 and 2003. The Whittier native batted .400 (8-for-20) with two homers and five RBI in 1999. In 29 career postseason games, Garciaparra is batting .318 (34-for-107) with a .380 on-base percentage, .598 slugging percentage, seven homers, and 23 RBI. He ranks seventh among active players with a .314 career batting average.

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY – On this date in 1985, the Dodgers notched five doubles in Game 3 at St. Louis to tie the club NLCS record set on Oct. 7, 1977.

GETTING ON – Andre Ethier is batting just .222 (4-for-18) in five postseason games this year, but he has reached base at a .391 clip during the playoffs, as he’s drawn five walks. Since August 5, Ethier is hitting .354 with a .439 on-base percentage and .615 slugging percentage.

WHAT A RELIEF – A quintet of Dodger relievers threw 5.2 scoreless innings in Game 2. In five postseason games, the Dodger bullpen has posted a 1.65 ERA (3 ER/16.1 IP). During the regular season, the Dodgers’ relief corps ranked second in the NL with a 3.33 ERA behind only the Phillies (3.19).

BIG GAME JAMES – James Loney went 2-for-4 in Game 2 and has at least one hit in all six of his career postseason games, batting .360 (9-for-25).

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez drove in three runs in Game 2 to give him seven during the playoffs and 71 in his postseason career, which ranks second all-time behind Bernie Williams (80). Ramirez has hit safely in 40 of his last 45 postseason games, with a .351 (60-for-171) average during that span. His teams are 58-42 overall in the postseason.

► Ramirez has three homers in his first five playoff games this year. The only other Los Angeles Dodgers to accomplish that feat are Steve Garvey and Ron Cey, who homered three times in the first five games of the 1978 NLCS.

MEDIA MADHOUSE – More than 800 credentials have been issued for the 2008 NLCS at Dodger Stadium. That includes more than 30 daily newspapers from around the country, several wire services and major sports websites, and media outlets from at least eight different countries – the United States, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Canada, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and Ecuador.

CATCHING SOME HITS – Russell Martin has a hit in all five postseason games this season and seven of the eight playoff games he’s played in during his career. He has a .313 career postseason average (10-for-32) with five RBI and six runs scored.

LINEUPS:

Phillies:

Rollins. SS
Victorino. CF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Werth. RF
Feliz. 3B
Ruiz. C
Moyer. LHP

Dodgers:

Furcal. SS
Ethier. RF
Ramirez. LF
Martin. C
Garciaparra. 1B
Blake. 3B
Kemp. CF
DeWitt. 2B
Kuroda. RHP

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Big Innings Are Killing The Dodgers


I know some Dodger fans are a bit panic-strickened today. That's understandable considering LA is down 0-2 to the Phillies.

However, as I have told some fans since that Game 2 loss, there's no need to panic until the Dodgers face an elimination game. Until then, anything is possible.

Don't believe me? Just ask Manny Ramirez. His 2004 Red Sox team was down 0-3 to the Yankees in the ALCS. Boston responded with 4 straight wins to advance to the World Series before sweeping the Cardinals in the Fall Classic. So again, anything is possible.

But if the Dodgers are going to make this comeback dream a reality, they will have to stop giving up the big inning. Their inability to limit the damage has been the main reason they find themselves in this 0-2 hole.

Even with Ramirez, the Dodgers simply don't have the firepower to overcome large deficits. During the regular season, LA went 15-41 in games in which the Dodgers gave up 3 or more runs in any one inning.

So what did the Phillies do in the first two games of this NLCS? They scored 3 runs off Derek Lowe in the 6th inning of Game 1, and then 4 runs in the 2nd and 3rd innings off Chad Billingsley and some help from the bullpen in Game 2.

If that trend continues, the Dodgers pursuit of their first World Series title since 1988 will have to wait until next year.



Dodger Daily Notes


MAKING A RUN FOR THE PENNANT – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 3 of the NLCS tomorrow at Dodger Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 5:22 p.m. PT.

► Tomorrow’s game will be the first NLCS game at Dodger Stadium in exactly 20 years. Game 7 of the 1988 NLCS vs. New York was on Oct. 12, 1988.

THE NATIONAL LEAGUE’S HOTTEST TEAMS – Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-10 (.688) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the second-best winning percentage in the National League during that period, behind only the Phillies (24-9, .727).

The Dodgers and Phillies have played 10 games this season and each has been won by the home team, with Philadelphia taking six of the 10.

NO NEED TO PANIC – Prior to this season, the Dodgers had appeared in the National League Championship Series seven times and have never dropped the first two games. However, of the franchise’s 18 World Series appearances, the team has lost the first two games of a Fall Classic seven times. On three occasions have they lost the first two games and come back to win a seven-game series – during the 1955, 1965, and 1981 World Series.

► In all three of those series, the first two games were on the road and the Dodgers rebounded to win three straight at home.

HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS – The Dodgers were 23-9 (.719) at Dodger Stadium after the All-Star break for the best home record in the Majors in that span. The .719 winning percentage at home in the second half was the club’s second-best since coming to Los Angeles behind only the 1991 squad that went 29-11 (.725) at home after the break.

IT’S ALMOST HALLOWEEN – Former Dodger pitcher Jim Gott created Danny’s Farm last year, a non-profit organization designed to employ adults with disabilities and serve all children. Named for his son, Danny, who has autism, the farm will host a five-day Fall Pumpkin Festival from Oct. 26-30 and pumpkins will be free of charge to all kids with disabilities. For more information, call (626) 797-FARM or visit http://www.dannysfarm.com/

A SPECIAL BURGER FOR THE NLCS – Levy Restaurants will have a new offering in the Dugout Club and Dodger Stadium suites for the NLCS. The Lasorda Cabernet burger is made with Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, an old world style Italian red wine from the Tommy Lasorda Gold Medal Collection, and also features cabernet onions, whole grained mustard aioli, Swiss and cheddar cheese and baby arugula served on a Hawaiian roll.

WELL TRAVELED – After last night’s flight home, the Dodgers have flown more than 63,000 miles from the time they reported to Vero Beach until today. The team will have made 39 flights, including their historic trip to Beijing, China in March where they faced the Padres in the first-ever Major League games on Chinese soil.

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY – On this date in 1978, rookie Bob Welch struck out Yankee slugger Reggie Jackson with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Dodgers a 4-3 victory in Game 4 of the World Series.

TAKE A BOW – The Dodgers will be honored as the Organization of the Year at the 24th Annual Asian Business League (ABL) Awards Dinner November 6 at the Omni Hotel in Los Angeles, it was announced yesterday.

WHAT A RELIEF – A quintet of Dodger relievers last night threw 5.2 scoreless innings. In five postseason games, the Dodger bullpen has posted a 1.65 ERA (3 ER/16.1 IP). During the regular season, the Dodgers’ relief corps ranked second in the NL with a 3.33 ERA behind only the Phillies (3.19).

BIG GAME JAMES – James Loney went 2-for-4 last night and has at least one hit in all six of his career postseason games, batting .360 (9-for-25).

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez drove in three runs last night to give him seven during the playoffs and 71 in his postseason career, which ranks second all-time behind Bernie Williams (80). Ramirez has hit safely in 40 of his last 45 postseason games, with a .351 (60-for-171) average during that span. His teams are 58-42 overall in the postseason.

► Ramirez has three homers in his first five playoff games this year. The only other Los Angeles Dodgers to accomplish that feat are Steve Garvey and Ron Cey, who homered three times in the first five games of the 1978 NLCS.

IN HIS FOOTSTEPS – The door to Joe Torre’s office still has the embossed words “ALSTON – MGR” from Walter Alston’s tenure as Dodger manager. During that time, he managed Philadelphia skipper Charlie Manuel in 1974-75.

THE HOME CROWD – Tomorrow night’s game is sold out. During the 2008 regular season, the Dodgers posted a paid attendance of 3,730,750, the third-highest total in the Majors behind only the Yankees and Mets, who were both closing down their stadiums. The Dodgers surpassed the three-million mark in paid attendance for the 13th consecutive season and a Major League record 23rd time overall.

Ledge Magazine Offers Free Music


One of my good friends, Chris Cathcart, founded the Black college student HIV/AIDS awareness magazine, Ledge a few years ago.

The magazine recently revamped its website, and through a relationship with Hidden Beach Recordings, is now offering a free download of new music from the artist Tony Rich (whose Hidden Beach debut came out Sept. 23).

New music from the group Kindred will be available soon.

So please help a brother out by going to the website and downloading the music so the folks at Hidden Beach will know that the website is reaching some cool peeps. It doesn't cost you a cent and at worse, you'll end up on Hidden Beach's email list.

Just go to the Ledge website-- https://www.ledgemagazine.com/--and follow the instructions to download the single "Part the Waves."

Friday, October 10, 2008

Tyson Chandler: Witnessing History


There was a time in our history that professional athletes were some of the most involved citizens in the current issues of the day. They used their name and their stature to call their fans' attention to topics that might not otherwise be familiar.

Today, however, it seems professional athletes try to stay as far away from social activism and politics as they can. Following in the footsteps of Michael Jordan who once said, "Republicans buy Nike too," modern day athletes are more concerned about gaining/losing commercial endorsements than they are about bringing change to their communities.

Now, don't get me wrong, I don't think ALL professional athletes should be involved in social issues. Quite frankly, not all of them are informed enough to add anything to the discussion. Some, in fact, might do more harm than good. Yet another similarity they share with everyday citizens, I might add.

However, it is refreshing when professional athletes--especially younger ones--take the initiative to get involved or, at the very least, expand their perspectives.

New Orleans Hornets forward Tyson Chandler recently attended a Barack Obama rally in Indiana. He wrote about the experience on his nba.com blog. Here's an excerpt:

He's just one of those dudes who comes off so poised, calm and just touchable. I've never felt like a Presidential candidate was touchable, that you could actually sit down and have a conversation with him. But with Obama, I feel like I'm in touch with him, like I understand what he's talking about.

I've watched debates in the past, and I never knew what was going on. I never realized what the President was talking about. But Obama breaks it down so that I can understand, my grandparents can understand, anybody can. He bridges the gaps and brings everybody together.

I was sitting at the rally yesterday and I saw this older black gentleman with a camcorder. He had grey hair and he was recording it. I was just watching him and he looked so proud. It looked like he was gonna record it and go back, show his grandchildren and say "I was here on this day."

And next to him were some older white ladies, who when Obama was making his speech, were jumping up, screaming and raising their hands. So, I was thinking, "Wow, look at that." You had different nationalities there, different ages and different genders, and everybody was there for the same cause. We haven't seen this in a long time. And it was just a great thing to be a part of.



Dodgers Daily Notes And Lineups--NLCS Game 2


MAKING A RUN FOR THE PENNANT – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 2 of the NLCS.

BASEBALL’S TWO HOTTEST TEAMS – Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-9 (.710) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the second-best winning percentage in Major League Baseball during that period, slightly behind the Phillies (23-9, .719).

► The Dodgers are 12-6 in their last 18 road games, including the NLDS.

NO NEED TO PANIC – Prior to this season, the Dodgers had appeared in the National League Championship Series seven times and have dropped the first game three times, yet come back to win on two of those occasions (1978 and 1988).

► Of the franchise’s six World Championships, the team has lost the first game of a seven-game Fall Classic four times and still come back to win – 1955, 1959, 1965, and 1981.

AN EYE FOR TALENT – Joining the Dodgers on the trip to Philadelphia are scouts Mitch Webster and Ron Rizzi, who served as advance scouts for this series. Webster, who played for the Dodgers from 1991-95, doubles as an amateur scout and is responsible for scouting and signing second baseman Blake DeWitt and left-hander Scott Elbert, both of whom made their big league debuts this season after being selected in the first round of the June 2004 First-Year Player Draft.

FOOTING THE BILLS – Tonight’s starter Chad Billingsley ranked fifth in the NL with 201 strikeouts and seventh with a 3.14 ERA this season. From June 17 through the end of the regular season, he went 12-3 with a 2.78 ERA, which tied him for the most wins in baseball during that period with Mark Buehrle, A.J. Burnett, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, and CC Sabathia. At just 24 years of age, Billingsley became the youngest Dodger to notch 16 victories since Ramon Martinez won 17 as a 23-year-old in 1991.

► Billingsley allowed one earned run in 6.2 innings during his lone start in Game 2 of the NLDS at Chicago. In three career postseason outings, Billingsley is 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA (1 ER/8.2 IP) and has allowed just six hits while striking out 10.

OF COURSE HE PREFERS GENO’S – Tommy Lasorda has had two cheese steak sandwiches since coming to town earlier this week. The Italian skipper prefers Geno’s with provolone cheese, grilled onions, and hot peppers.

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez drove in his fourth run of the postseason last night to give him 68 for his career, which ranks second all-time behind Bernie Williams (80). Ramirez has hit safely in 39 of his last 44 postseason games, with a .353 (59-for-167) average during that span. His teams are 58-41 overall in the postseason.

BIG GAME JAMES – James Loney has at least one hit in all five of his career postseason games, batting .333 (7-for-21). He has a .391 on-base percentage and .524 slugging percentage.

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY – On this date in 1920, in Game 5 of the World Series against the Indians, Cleveland second baseman Billy Wambsganss converts what is still the only unassisted triple play in World Series history.

KEEPING LEFTIES IN CHECK – Dodger pitchers have managed to contain left-handers pretty well so far in the postseason. Despite Chase Utley’s homer last night, lefties are batting just .184 (9-for-49) through four playoff games, compared to a .271 mark (23-for-85) by right-handed hitters.

WHAT A RELIEF – A trio of Dodger relievers last night threw 2.2 scoreless innings. In four postseason games, the Dodger bullpen has posted a 2.53 ERA (3 ER/10.2 IP) while holding hitters to a .205 batting average. During the regular season, the Dodgers’ relief corps ranked second in the NL with a 3.33 ERA behind only the Phillies (3.19).

► Dodger starting pitchers have been even better, posting a 1.85 ERA (5 ER/24.1 IP) in four games.

WELL TRAVELED – After tonight’s flight home, the Dodgers will have flown more than 63,000 miles from the time they reported to Vero Beach until Game 3 of the NLCS. The team will have made 39 flights, including their historic trip to Beijing, China in March where they faced the Padres in the first-ever Major League games on Chinese soil.

BACK HOME IN L.A. – The Dodgers’ front office will watch tonight’s game from the Third Baseline Box Club at Dodger Stadium. In addition, the Dodgers’ Home Base Network is hosting a number of viewing parties in Los Angeles for the NLCS, with former Dodgers Kenny Landreaux, Rudy Law, and Bobby Castillo in attendance as well as a chance to win tickets to Game 4 at Dodger Stadium. To find one of the 15 local restaurants/bars that are part of the Home Base Network, please visit https://www.fegmail.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.dodgers.com/homebase
LINEUPS:
Dodgers:
Furcal. SS
Martin. C
Ramirez. LF
Ethier. RF
Loney. 1B
Kemp. CF
DeWitt. 2B
Blake. 3B
Billingsley. RHP
Phillies:
Rollins. SS
Victorino. CF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Werth. RF
Dobbs. 3B
Ruiz. C
Myers. RHP

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Lineups Announced For NLCS Game 1





















Dodgers:

Furcal. SS
Ethier. RF
Ramirez. LF
Martin. C
Loney. 1B
Kemp. CF
Blake. 3
BDeWitt. 2B
Lowe. RHP


Phillies:

Rollins. SS
Victorino. CF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Werth. RF
Feliz. 3B
Ruiz. C
Hamels. LHP

Dodger Daily Notes--NLCS Game 1


A RETURN TO THE LCS – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 1 of the NLCS. This marks the first NLCS game for Los Angeles since Oct. 12, 1988.

BASEBALL’S TWO HOTTEST TEAMS – Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-8 (.733) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the best winning percentage in Major League Baseball during that period, slightly ahead of the Phillies (22-9, .710).

► The Dodgers are 12-5 in their last 17 road games, including the NLDS.

A HISTORY WITH PHILADELPHIA – This series marks the fourth time that the Dodgers and Phillies will meet in the National League Championship Series. The two teams met in consecutive years in 1977 and 1978, with the Dodgers winning both best-of-five series in four games. In 1983, Philadelphia turned the tables and defeated the Dodgers in four games. Detailed recaps of those series appear on pages 183-187 of the Dodgers’ 2008 Postseason Guide.

LEFT HAS BEEN RIGHT – The Dodgers will face two left-handed starters in the first three games of the NLCS – Cole Hamels and Jamie Moyer. This season, the Dodgers went 31-21 against left-handers and batted .275 against them, compared to .260 against right-handers.

LOWE DOWN – Tonight’s starter, Derek Lowe, is the only Major League pitcher to win at least 12 games in each of the past seven seasons. Over his last 11 starts, including the NLDS, Lowe has gone 7-1 with a 1.41 ERA (11 ER/70.0 IP). In his career against the Phillies, Lowe is 4-1 with a 3.02 ERA and two saves in 11 games, including a 2-0 mark and 2.25 ERA at Citizens Bank Park, where he’s held batters to a .216 average.

► Lowe is 5-0 with a 0.85 ERA in his last seven starts and has not lost to the Phillies since 2001. STATS, LLC

INSIDE DODGERTOWN – The Dodgers have launched daily webisodes on dodgers.com, taking fans “Inside Dodgertown.” The four-minute vignettes are hosted primarily by Rick Monday and include exclusive footage, interviews, and behind-the-scenes access to the team and its players.

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez graces the cover of Sports Illustrated this week, his fourth SI cover and first as a Dodger. He has hit safely in 38 of his last 43 postseason games, with a .350 (57-for-163) average during that span. His teams are 58-40 overall in the postseason.

BIG GAME JAMES – James Loney has at least one hit in all four of his career postseason games, batting .333 (6-for-18).

► During the regular season, Loney went 12-for-32 (.375) with a team-leading five RBI against the Phillies. Loney has a .400 career mark (16-for-40) with a homer and seven RBI at Citizens Bank Park.

► Others to fare well against Philly in ’08 are Jeff Kent (.364, 4 RBI) and Matt Kemp (.324, 4 2B, HR)

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY – On this date in 1988, Mike Scioscia tied Game 4 of the NLCS with a two-run homer in the ninth inning off Dwight Gooden before Kirk Gibson won it on a 12th inning homer. On this date in 2004, Jose Lima pitched a complete-game shutout in Game 3 of the NLDS.

KUO IN THE MIX – Southpaw Hong-Chih Kuo was added to the NLCS roster in place of Takashi Saito. Kuo had a 1.69 ERA as a reliever, the best mark in the National League and seventh best in the Majors. He held lefties to a .202 average during the year, including a .130 (3-for-23) mark since July 27.

BUILDING FROM WITHIN – Of the 25 players on the NLCS roster, 11 were drafted and developed by the Dodgers – Chad Billingsley, Jonathan Broxton, Blake DeWitt, Matt Kemp, Clayton Kershaw, Hong-Chih Kuo, James Loney, Russell Martin, James McDonald, Chan Ho Park, and Cory Wade. Andre Ethier was drafted by Oakland but reached the Majors for the first time with Los Angeles.

MANUEL LABOR – Charlie Manuel, a reserve outfielder with the Dodgers in parts of the 1974 and 1975 seasons, is the second former Los Angeles player to manage against the Dodgers in the postseason. Former Dodger infielder Willie Randolph managed the New York Mets against Los Angeles in the 2006 N.L. Division Series.

► Other Phillies with Dodger ties are coaches Milt Thompson and Davey Lopes, outfielders Jayson Werth and Shane Victorino and pitcher Rudy Seanez. Dodger players or staff with ties to the Phillies include coaches Larry Bowa, Mariano Duncan, and Ken Howell, injured catcher Gary Bennett, broadcaster Fernando Valenzuela, Chief Operating Officer Dennis Mannion and Premium Sales Executive Allyson Connolly.

BACK HOME IN L.A. – The Dodgers’ front office will watch tonight’s game from the Third Baseline Box Club at Dodger Stadium. In addition, the Dodgers’ Home Base Network is hosting a number of viewing parties in Los Angeles for Games 1 & 2 of the NLCS, with former Dodgers Kenny Landreaux, Rudy Law, and Bobby Castillo in attendance as well as a chance to win tickets to Game 4 at Dodger Stadium. To find one of the 15 local restaurants/bars that are part of the Home Base Network, please visit www.dodgers.com/homebase

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

USC Men's Basketball Upcoming Events


TIP OFF WITH THE MEN OF TROY

- USC To Host Fundraiser For The Ryan Francis Endowed Scholarship -

LOS ANGELES – The USC Athletic Department will be hosting a “Tip Off With The Men Of Troy” event on Oct. 21 at the Galen Center to introduce the 2008-09 men’s basketball team and raise funds for the Ryan Francis Endowed Scholarship.

This academic year Ryan Francis would have graduated from USC and the Trojans are committed to raising the remaining funds needed to complete the scholarship which will ensure the memory of this extraordinary young man lives on in the minds of all future Trojans.

Francis was a 2005-06 Pac-10 honorable mention All-Freshman team member, who was senselessly gunned down while visiting his mother, Paula, back in Louisiana. Francis averaged 7.1 points and 3.7 assists for the Trojans in his one season, but whose spirit and attitude forever touched the lives of the Trojan family.

This exclusive event will allow fans a chance to watch the Trojans practice from 4-5 p.m., participate in a silent auction, meet the players, hear from USC head basketball coach Tim Floyd and attend a VIP reception in the Founders Club.

To purchase tickets or to make a donation, please call the USC Development Office at (213) 740-4155. E-mail questions can be directed to athdev@usc.edu.


USC MEN’S BASKETBALL TO HOST “DRIBBLE FOR THE CURE” AND ANNUAL CARDINAL &GOLD SCRIMMAGE ON OCT. 26

LOS ANGELES – The USC men’s basketball program has partnered with the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation (PCRF) and the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) for the third annual “Dribble For The Cure” charity event to be held at the Galen Center on Sunday (Oct. 26) beginning at 11 a.m. Following the fund-raising festivities, the 2008-09 men’s basketball team will be on display for the annual Cardinal and Gold scrimmage to be held at 2 p.m.

The third annual “Dribble For The Cure” will feature a festival of games, activities, food and entertainment, as well as a meet and greet with the USC men’s basketball team and head coach Tim Floyd. Each participant, asked to collect pledges to earn prizes on the day of the event, will join the USC basketball team and dribble a basketball through a course winding across the USC campus, beginning and ending at the Galen Center. In addition, each participant will receive an official “Dribble For The Cure” T-shirt.

Immediately following the “Dribble For The Cure,” all fans are invited to attend the free Cardinal and Gold intrasquad scrimmage at 2 p.m. and get their first look at the 2008-09 Trojans in a game-like situation.

The USC men’s basketball team is coming off its second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and 20-win season, going 21-12 last year. Juniors Taj Gibson (All-Pac-10, Third Team), Daniel Hackett and Dwight Lewis along with senior Keith Wilkinson return to anchor the Trojans’ squad. They will be joined by the No. 7 ranked recruiting class according to HoopScoop.com, featuring McDonald’s All-American DeMar DeRozan, a consensus top five recruit. Despite the departure of O.J. Mayo to the NBA as the third player taken overall, early season rankings list this Trojan squad as a top 25 team with The Sporting News ranking USC No. 11.

This promises to be an exciting season of Trojan basketball and it all begins on Oct. 26. Come out to have some fun, check out the Trojans and help generate proceeds for pediatric cancer research and the treatment of children with cancer at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.

Dodgers Daily Notes


ON TO THE LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES – The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 1 of the NLCS tomorrow. The Dodgers swept the Cubs in the best-of-five NLDS.

BASEBALL’S TWO HOTTEST TEAMS – Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-8 (.733) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the best winning percentage in Major League Baseball during that period, slightly ahead of the Phillies (22-9, .710).

A HISTORY WITH PHILADELPHIA – This series marks the fourth time that the Dodgers and Phillies will meet in the National League Championship Series. The two teams met in consecutive years in 1977 and 1978, with the Dodgers winning both best-of-five series in four games. In 1983, Philadelphia turned the tables and defeated the Dodgers in four games. Detailed recaps of those series appear on pages 183-187 of the Dodgers’ 2008 Postseason Guide.

LEFT HAS BEEN RIGHT – The Dodgers will likely face two left-handed starters in the first four games of the NLCS – Cole Hamels and Jamie Moyer. This season, the Dodgers went 31-21 against left-handers and batted .275 against them, compared to .260 against right-handers.

SPEAKING OF LEFT-HANDERS – One of the most famous left-handers in Dodger history, Fernando Valenzuela, is on hand to serve as an analyst for KHJ/La Ranchera 930, the Dodgers’ Spanish-language radio home. Valenzuela appeared in eight games (seven starts) while posting a 3.00 ERA for the Phillies in 1994, when he was a teammate of current Dodger first base coach Mariano Duncan.

BACK WHEN HE WAS A SCRIBE – Ned Colletti, the first Los Angeles Dodger GM to build two playoff teams in his first three seasons, covered the Philadelphia Flyers for the Philadelphia Journal from 1980-81 prior to joining the Cubs’ front office.

SEÑOR OCTUBRE – Manny Ramirez graces the cover of Sports Illustrated this week, his fourth SI cover and first as a Dodger. He has hit safely in 38 of his last 43 postseason games, with a .350 (57-for-163) average during that span. His teams are 58-40 overall in the postseason.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel served as Ramirez’s manager for Triple-A Charlotte in the Indians’ organization in 1993, as his hitting coach with the Indians from 1994-99, and as his manager in Cleveland in 2000.

BIG GAME JAMES – James Loney has a hit in all four of his career postseason games, batting .333 (6-for-18).

During the regular season, Loney went 12-for-32 (.375) with a team-leading five RBI against the Phillies. Loney has a .400 career mark (16-for-40) with a homer and seven RBI at Citizens Bank Park.

Others to fare well against Philly in ’08 are Jeff Kent (.364, 4 RBI) and Matt Kemp (.324, 4 2B, HR)

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY – On this date in 1957, Dodger President Walter O’Malley announced the club’s westward move to Los Angeles. Since then, the Dodgers have won more games, more NL pennants and more World Series than any other team in the National League.

BIRTHDAY BOYS – Dodger massage therapist Ichiro Tani celebrates his birthday today. He shares his big day with Special Assistant to the GM Rick Ragazzo, Dodger gardener Ignacio Carrillo, and former Dodger Olmedo Saenz.

PHRONT OFFICE TIES – Dodger Chief Operating Officer Dennis Mannion worked for the Phillies from 1982-97, eventually serving as Vice President of Marketing and Sales for eight seasons. Premium Seating Sales Exec Allyson Connolly also cut her teeth in Philadelphia prior to joining the Dodgers.

MANUEL LABOR – Charlie Manuel, a reserve outfielder with the Dodgers in parts of the 1974 and 1975 seasons, is the second former Los Angeles player to manage against the Dodgers in the postseason. Former Dodger infielder Willie Randolph managed the New York Mets against Los Angeles in the 2006 N.L. Division Series. Two former Brooklyn Dodger players managed against the Dodgers in the postseason – Al Lopez (White Sox vs. Los Angeles in 1959 World Series) and Casey Stengel, who managed the Yankees against the Brooklyn Dodgers in five World Series in the 1940s and 50s.

THEY BLED DODGER BLUE – Two former Dodgers are on Charlie Manuel’s coaching staff – Milt Thompson, who played on the 1996 Dodgers and Davey Lopes, who played for Los Angeles from 1972-81, appearing in two NLCS and helping the Dodgers to the 1981 World Championship. Along with Steve Garvey, Bill Russell and Ron Cey, he was part of the famous Dodger infield of the 70s and 80s that played together for an MLB record 8 ½ seasons.

IF YOU’RE NOT IN PHILLY – The Dodgers’ Home Base Network is hosting a number of viewing parties in Los Angeles for Games 1 & 2 of the NLCS, with former Dodgers Kenny Landreaux, Rudy Law, and Bobby Castillo in attendance as well as a chance to win tickets to Game 4 at Dodger Stadium. To find one of the 15 local restaurants/bars that are part of the Home Base Network, please visit www.dodgers.com/homebase

Don't Believe The Hype Of The Curse


I know some of you have already been talking about it, but I don't want to hear it. I know it helps you deal with the pain of yet another playoff loss, but I don't want to hear it. I know it's the only reason you can come up with to explain why this keeps happening, but I still don't want to hear it.

THERE IS NO BOSTON RED SOX CURSE ON THE ANGELS!

Just go ahead and get that nonsense out of your head right now. There is no curse. It does not exist. It never has and it never will.

A curse is not the reason the Angels lost this series. A curse is not the reason why Reggie Willits didn't catch that ball in Game 2. A curse is not the reason why the Angels had 20 hits in the first two games but only one of them went for extra bases. A curse is not the reason Erik Aybar missed the bunt on that suicide squeeze.

The Angels lost because they didn't play well enough. It's that simple.

We've seen it countless times across countless sports. The best team doesn't always win, and it's always for the same reason. They simply didn't play well enough to win.

Mike Scioscia and the rest of the team will be the first to tell you. They had their chances, but they didn't take advantage of them. You can get away with that sometimes during the regular season, especially in the AL West. But in order to advance in the playoffs, you have to make the most of each and every opportunity.

Now, the Angels will be faced with some serious decisions in the off-season. The futures of Garret Anderson, Vladimir Guerrero, Mark Teixeira, Jon Garland, and Frankie Rodriguez will all be determined by either Arte Moreno and Tony Reagins or, in some cases, the players themselves. This winter will go a long way in shaping the Angels chances of a return trip to the playoffs to pursue yet another World Series title.

But if you want to do your part to help the Angels this off-season. Do everyone a favor and get that damn curse out of your head. Holding on to such nonsense is not good for the soul or the team. Just ask the Cubs!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Not The Best Farewell For Elgin Baylor


You have likely heard this news already, but I wanted to pass along the Clippers official statement as well as my thoughts.

It's a real shame that Elgin Baylor's career with the Clippers didn't end in a better fashion. While his moves as GM won't earn him a spot in the Hall of Fame, he was still a man worthy of going out with a bit more dignity.

The Clippers actually offered him another role with the team, albeit not in basketball operations, but Baylor's pride, seemingly, would not allow him to take it.

It's not exactly clear at this point what, if any, action Baylor plans to take in the future. Whatever it is, I just hope it doesn't overshadow his legacy as one of the best players in history.

The Los Angeles Clippers today announced that Head Coach Mike Dunleavy will assume the additional role of General Manager, replacing Vice President of Basketball Operations, Elgin Baylor.

In a related move, the team’s current Director of Player Personnel, Neil Olshey, will be elevated to the post of Assistant General Manager.

“We greatly appreciate Elgin’s efforts during his time with the Clippers, and we wish him the very best,” said Clippers’ Owner and Chairman of the Board Donald T. Sterling.

Referring to Dunleavy and Olshey respectively, Clippers President Andy Roeser said, “In Mike and Neil, we're fortunate to already have talented people in place to make this transition a seamless one. Going forward, we have high expectations for our team. From a basketball standpoint, these are the people we're counting on to make those expectations a reality."

Dunleavy welcomed the opportunity, saying, “I really appreciate the trust that the organization has placed in me. We’re ready and excited to move forward, and we think we’ll have a team which can be dynamic and exciting, certainly one with enough talent to be a force in the Western Conference.”

Baylor, an 11-time NBA All Star, joined the Clippers in 1986 as Vice President of Basketball Operations after a stellar 14-year playing career with the Los Angeles Lakers and a brief coaching stint with the New Orleans Jazz. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1976, chosen as one of the NBA’s “50 Greatest Players of All Time” during the league’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 1997, and was named the 2005-06 NBA Executive of the Year.

Dunleavy, entering his sixth year as Clippers’ Head Coach, has manned dual roles before: he was Vice President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach of the Milwaukee Bucks from 1992-93 through 1995-96.

Olshey, originally hired as Clippers’ Director of Player Development prior to the 2003-04 season, became an assistant coach on Dunleavy’s staff in 2004-05. He has been the team’s Director of Player Personnel for the past three seasons.

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Monday, October 6, 2008

PAC-10 Slaps Harbaugh For Blasting Officials


When are coaches going to learn that you can't talk trash about the officials publicly? It's not as if Jim Harbaugh didn't know this, so maybe he just thought whatever punishment he received would not outweigh the perceived injustice his team received.

Walnut Creek--Stanford head football coach Jim Harbaugh was reprimanded today by Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen for public comments about the officiating in Saturday’s Stanford-Notre Dame game.

At his postgame media conference, Harbaugh criticized a second-quarter call in which Stanford was flagged for failing to provide a Notre Dame player an unimpeded opportunity to catch a punt. The penalty erased the recovery of the muffed punt by Stanford.

“Pac-10 rules prohibit comments by a coach about officiating other than to the Conference office. Coach Harbaugh violated that rule by publicly criticizing the officials,” Hansen said. “He and all other coaches must comply with the policies on officiating.”

“In addition, Pac-10 officials have reviewed video of the play and it is apparent the Stanford player covering the punt impeded the Notre Dame player attempting to catch it.

“The call was correct,” he added. “NCAA playing rule 6-4-1 states in part ‘A player of the receiving team within the boundary lines must be given an unimpeded opportunity to catch the kick.’ Even though the player attempting to catch the kick was bumped by his teammate, he still attempted to catch the kick and was impeded by the Stanford player. The rule places the onus on the kicking team member to avoid impeding the opportunity to catch the ball.”

Angels/Red Sox Notes--Game 4




Los Angeles Angels at Boston


* The Angels’ victory on Sunday snapped an 11-game playoff losing streak to the Red Sox, dating to Game 5 of the 1986 ALCS. It also broke a nine-game postseason winning streak for Boston that dated to Game 5 of last year’s ALDS versus Cleveland.

* Teams trailing two games to one are 16-18 in Game 4 of Divisional Series all-time, and have a 9-25 series record.

* The Red Sox’ loss on Sunday was their first in a potential series-winning game since losing to the Yankees in Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS. Boston had won six in a row when playing a potential series-winning game.

* John Lackey has lost his last three playoff starts, permitting a .304 batting average while compiling a 5.60 ERA. The Angels have lost Lackey’s last four postseason starts, after winning three of his first four. Including the playoffs, Lackey is 3-8 in his career versus Boston.

* Jon Lester allowed no earned runs over 7.0 innings while winning Game 1 last Wednesday. Including that victory, Lester is 11-0 with a 1.91 at Fenway Park since April 29. The Red Sox have won all 14 of his starts over that span.

* After batting just .183 (11-for-60) in his first 16 career playoff games, Vladimir Guerrero is hitting .583 (7-for-12) in this series. His average is .438 since the beginning of September.

* Mark Teixeira and Torii Hunter have joined Fred Lynn (1982) as the only players to collect at least two hits in each of their first three postseason games with the Angels.

* Over his last five postseason games (since Game 3 of the 2007 World Series), Jacoby Ellsbury has hit .522 (12-for-23) with seven doubles and seven RBI.

Dodger Daily Notes: Workout Day - October 6



ON TO THE LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES -- The NL West Division Champion Dodgers will take on the NL East Division Champion Phillies in Game 1 of the NLCS on Thursday. The Dodgers swept the Cubs in a best-of-five series.

BASEBALL'S TWO HOTTEST TEAMS -- Since Aug. 30 when the Dodgers started an eight-game winning streak, the team has posted a 22-8 (.733) record, including their three victories in the NLDS. That is the best winning percentage in Major League Baseball during that period, slightly ahead of the Phillies (22-9, .710).

A HISTORY WITH PHILADELPHIA -- This series marks the fourth time that the Dodgers and Phillies will meet in the National League Championship Series. The two teams met in consecutive years in 1977 and 1978, with the Dodgers winning both best-of-five series in four games. In 1983, Philadelphia turned the tables and defeated the Dodgers in four games.
* In the 1977 NLCS, the Dodgers dropped the first game at Dodger Stadium before coming back to win three in a row and win the series in Game 4 in front of 64,924 fans at Philadelphia's Veterans Stadium. Los Angeles lost the World Series that year to the Yankees in six games.
* In 1978, the Dodgers captured the first two games at Veterans Stadium before dropping Game 3 to Steve Carlton. Los Angeles wrapped up the series at Dodger Stadium in Game 4 with a 4-3,
10-inning victory.
* In 1983, the Dodgers dropped the opener at home before winning Game 2 behind Fernando Valenzuela. Los Angeles then lost Games 3 & 4 in Philadelphia but the Phillies went on to lose to the Orioles in the World Series.
Detailed recaps of these series appears on pages 183-187 of the Dodgers' 2008 Postseason Guide.

SENOR OCTUBRE -- On Saturday night, Manny Ramirez went 1-for-2 to finish the NLDS 5-for-10 with two homers, three RBI and four walks. He has now hit safely in 38 of his last 43 postseason games, with a .350 (57-for-163) average during that span. His teams are 58-40 overall in the postseason.

BIG GAME JAMES -- James Loney had two RBI in Game 3 of the NLDS, finishing the series with a Dodger-record six RBI and a Dodger NLDS career mark of nine. Loney has a hit in all four of his career postseason games, batting .333 (6-for-18).

*During the regular season, Loney went 12-for-32 (.375) with a team-leading five RBI against the Phillies. Loney has a .400 career mark (16-for-40) with a homer and seven RBI at Citizens Bank Park.
*Other Dodgers to fare well against Philly are Jeff Kent (.364, 4 RBI) and Matt Kemp (.324, 4 2B, HR)

THIS DATE IN DODGER HISTORY -- On this date in 1959, the largest World Series crowd in Major League history (92,706) attends Game 5 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, as the Dodgers lost 1-0 behind Sandy Koufax. On this date in 1963, the Dodgers completed a four-game sweep over the Yankees to win the World Series -- the club's last series sweep in the postseason prior to this year's NLDS.

LARRY LEGEND -- Dodger third base coach Larry Bowa played for the Phillies from 1970-81, winning two Gold Gloves (1972, 1978) and appearing on five All-Star teams. He faced the Dodgers in the NLCS in 1977 and 1978 and is the franchise's all-time leader in games and fielding percentage at shortstop (1,667, .991). He ranks among the franchise leader in numerous offensive categories.

*Bowa managed the Phillies from 2001-04, compiling a 277-308 record.
MANUEL LABOR -- Charlie Manuel, a reserve outfielder with the Dodgers in parts of the 1974 and 1975 seasons, is the second former Los Angeles player to manage against the Dodgers in the postseason. Former Dodger infielder Willie Randolph managed the New York Mets against Los Angeles in the 2006 N.L. Division Series. Two former Brooklyn Dodger players managed against the Dodgers in the postseason -- Al Lopez (White Sox vs. Los Angeles in 1959 World Series) and Casey Stengel, who managed the Yankees against the Brooklyn Dodgers in five World Series in the 1940s and 50s.

THEY BLED DODGER BLUE -- Two former Dodgers are on Charlie Manuel's coaching staff -- Milt Thompson, who played on the 1996 Dodgers and Davey Lopes, who played for Los Angeles from 1972-81, appearing in two NLCS and helping the Dodgers to the 1981 World Championship. Along with Steve Garvey, Bill Russell and Ron Cey, he was part of the famous Dodger infield of the 70s and 80s that played together for an MLB record 8 1/2 seasons.

*Among the Phillies who hold ties to the Dodgers are Jayson Werth (2004-06) and Rudy Seanez (1994-95, 2007). Shane Victorino was drafted by the Dodgers in the sixth round in 1999 but was taken in the Rule 5 draft in 2002 before being returned the organization and taken again in 2004 by the Phillies.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Angels/Red Sox Game Notes--Game 3


DIVISION SERIES OVERVIEW: For the third time in five seasons, the Angels and Boston Red Sox meet in the
Division Series…2008 marks the fourth time in eight total playoff appearances the Angels have squared off vs. Boston (1986, 2004, 2007 & 2008)…With 4-1 loss in Game 1 & 7-5 setback in Game 2, the Angels have dropped their last nine overall playoff games (2004-08), including six in a row at home…Last win came in Game 1 of 2005 ALCS at Chicago (3-2 score)…Last win at home came in Game 5 of 2005 ALDS vs. New York (5-3 score)…Angels have dropped last 11 post-season contests vs. Boston (1986-2008), the longest losing
streak vs. one club in post-season history (previously 10; Red Sox vs. Athletics, 1988-2003)…Last win vs. Boston came in Game 4 of 1986 ALCS at Anaheim Stadium (4-3 score)…Dating back to 1986, Angels had led in only seven of last 94 innings played between clubs…Angels have dropped five straight ALDS games (all vs. Boston) and are 6-11 overall in ALDS history.

GAME 3 OUTLOOK: Angels are 6-4 (1-2 vs. Boston) in Game 3 all-time in post-season (2-2 in ALDS; 0-2 vs. Boston)…Since Division Series play began in 1995, 35 teams have taken a 2-0 advantage in the series…Five teams have come back to win the series, the last being Boston vs. Oakland in 2003…The lone team to do so when losing the first two games at home was New York vs. Oakland in 2001…Angels are 6-17 on road in post-season history, 2-5 in ALDS and 1-6 at Boston (0-3 in ALDS)…First pitch is at 7:27 p.m. and tonight’s game will be televised nationally on TBS (Chip Carey, Buck Martinez and Craig Sager)…All Division Series games can be heard on KLAA AM 830 and the Angels radio network and in Spanish on KWKW ESPN Deportes (1330 AM)…The games will also be broadcast nationally on ESPN Radio.

DIVISION SERIES GAME 2 RECAP: Angels fell to 2-3 all-time in Game 2 of ALDS (5-6 in Game 2 club history) with 7-5 loss to the Red Sox…Five runs scored snapped string of nine straight post-season games with 3 runs-or-less (16 total; 1.8 per game)…Angels did not have leadoff batter reach safely in an inning in Game 1, but did so four times in Game 2 (scoring one run in each inning)…Angels have gone 66 innings without hitting a post-season home run… Club has gone 87 post-season innings without a lead of more than one run…Torii Hunter was 2-for-5 with two RBI and is 4-for-8 (.500, all singles) in series…He is batting .357 (25/70) in the DS in career (18 games)…Hunter owns 11 career post-season RBI, all coming in ALDS…Mark Teixeira finished 3-for-3 (1 BB) with three runs scored and an RBI…He is batting .714 (5/7; all
singles) with an RBI in series…Vladimir Guerrero was 3-for 4 (1 BB) and is 5-for-8 in series (.625; all singles)…Chone Figgins leadoff triple in eighth inning is Angels lone extra-base hits of series (21 hits total)…Francisco Rodriguez (1.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 HR) took the loss, his fourth in post-season career (most in Angels history)…Angels 3-4-5 hitters are a combined 14-for-23 (.609) through first two games of series while 6-9 batters are a collective 2-for-31 (.065)…Batters 1-2 are 4-for-19 in series (.211)…Angels were 3-for-14 with RISP in Game 2, are 4-for-21 (.190) in series and have left 20 runners on base thus far.

DIVISION SERIES GAME 1 RECAP: The Angels fell to 0-5 all-time in Game 1 of the ALDS with 4-1 loss to the Red Sox…John Lackey (0-1; 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 HR, 3 BB, 5 SO, 1 HB, 92 pitches/60 strikes) took the loss in his longest post-season outing since Game 4 of 2002 ALCS (7 IP)…Lackey is winless in his last five post-season starts (last win came in Game 7 of 2002 World Series)…Angels’ 2-5 hitters were 8-for-15 (.533) but team went 1-for-7 with RISP…Torii Hunter’s RBI single in the 3rd inning put the Angels up 1-0…Mark Teixeira logged two hits in his first career playoff game…Halos are 3-8 overall in Game 1 of a post-season series.

2008 vs. BOSTON: Angels outscored Red Sox 42-17 over last six regular season games played… Angels won last eight games vs. Red Sox, matching longest win streak vs. Boston in club history (8/26/61 - 5/30/62)…Angels swept Red Sox in last meeting July 28-30 at Fenway Park…Marked first time in club history Angels swept a series at home and road vs. Red Sox in same season…Angels won 2008 series 8-1, first season-series win over Red Sox since 2001.

DID YOU KNOW? The 2008 Angels are the first team since the 1931 Cardinals to win 100 games in a season without a 100-RBI player, a 30-HR hitter, or a 20-game winner…Halos are the first AL team to do it since the 1915 Red Sox…Both the 1931 Cardinals and 1915 Red Sox went on to win the World Series.

COMING IN HOT: Several Angels entered the playoffs on hot streaks: Mike Napoli led the Angels batting .453 (24/53) in September with six home runs and 16 RBI…He had 18 hits his last 27 at bats (.667)…Garret Anderson hit .356 (21/87) in September…Vlad Guerrero hit .387 (36/93) his last 23 games to raise average from .285 to .303…Scot Shields has fashioned a 2.11 ERA (21.1 IP – 5 ER) over his last 24 outings…Game 3 starter Joe Saunders is 3-0 with a 1.65
ERA (27.1 IP – 5 ER) over his last four starts.

ANGELS IN POST-SEASON: Angels are 21-29 overall in post-season history…Club was 11-5 in 2002 World Championship season and are 4-14 since…Angels captured AL West Division title Sept. 10 with club record 100-62 record…Angels finished 21 games ahead of second place Texas…Marked fourth division title in five seasons (2004, 2005 & 2007), seventh overall (1979, 1982 & 1986) and eighth trip to post-season in club history (2002 AL Wild Card)...Seven AL West titles ranks second in division all-time (Oakland-14)…Club record 100 wins (100-62) are most in a division title season (was 95-2005)…Club record for wins was 99 in 2002…Each season Angels have won 92 games-or-more they have made post-season (1982-93, 1986-92, 2002-99, 2004-92, 2005-95 & 2007-94)…Prior to winning World Series in 2002 with series
victories over New York (3-1 in ALDS), Minnesota (4-1 in ALCS) and San Francisco (4-3 in WS), franchise had not won post-season series in its first three trips…The club lost in ALCS to Baltimore (3-1 in ‘79), Milwaukee (3-2 in ‘82) and Boston (4-3 in ‘86)…The Angels also
lost in the ALDS to Boston in 2004 (3-0), defeated New York in the ALDS (3-2) and lost in the ALCS to Chicago (4-1) in 2005 and lost in the ALDS to Boston in 2007 (3-0)…The Angels are 4-6 in series play in club’s post-season history…The club has lost seven straight post-season games (1-4 vs. CWS in 2005 ALCS & 0-3 vs. Bos. in 2007 ALDS), four straight home games in playoffs and nine straight post-season games vs. Boston (final three games of 1986 ALCS & three game sweeps in 2004 & 2007 ALDS)…On Angels’ 2008 Division Series roster, 6 of 25 players have yet to appear in post-season in their careers, including Jose Arredondo, Kevin Jepsen, Gary Matthews, Jr. Joe Saunders, Mark Teixeira and Brandon Wood…The entire Angels coaching staff has participated in post-season as a staff (2007) with Manager Mike Scioscia, Bench Coach Ron Roenicke, Hitting Coach Mickey Hatcher, First Base Coach Alfredo Griffin and Bullpen Coach Orlando Mercado also participating as a staff in 2002, 2004 & 2005…As a player, Scioscia participated for Los Angeles in four NLCS (1981, 1983, 1985 & 1988) and was member of Dodgers’ 1981 and 1988 World Championship teams…Griffin played for Los Angeles in NLCS (1988) and Toronto in ALCS (1992 & 1993), winning World titles with all three teams…Hatcher played for Los Angeles in NLCS and World Series for 1988 World Champions…Roenicke played for San Diego in 1984 NLCS and World Series.