Saturday, October 11, 2008

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

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.

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