Friday, October 10, 2008

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
Furcal. SS
Martin. C
Ramirez. LF
Ethier. RF
Loney. 1B
Kemp. CF
DeWitt. 2B
Blake. 3B
Billingsley. RHP
Rollins. SS
Victorino. CF
Utley. 2B
Howard. 1B
Burrell. LF
Werth. RF
Dobbs. 3B
Ruiz. C
Myers. RHP

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