April 2011 - Los Angeles Dodgers Wiretap
Ethier's Hit Streak Reaches 25 Games
Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier extended his hitting streak to 25 games in the team's 3-2 victory over the Padres on Friday night. Ethier doubled with two outs in the fifth against Clayton Richard, a left-hander he had only one hit against in 15 career at-bats to that point. "The first two at-bats he was pounding me in hard, and I was still looking for something out over the plate to hit," Ethier said. "He threw me a sinking fastball down and in, and I just happened to pull my hands in enough, put a good swing on it and put it out there with a little topspin over [first baseman Jorge] Cantu's head and luckily got a hit out of it." The hitting streak is the longest since Willie Davis' franchise-record 31-game stretch in 1969.
McCourt: I'm Facing 'Uphill Road'
Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said Friday he has an "uphill road" in restoring faith among fans and pundits who have criticized him for taking money out of one of baseball's most storied franchises and using it for his and his ex-wife's lavish lifestyle. McCourt met with multiple media outlets Friday, speaking out at length publicly. He gave his mea culpa in which he pledged his commitment to the Dodgers and apologized for a much publicized divorce with his former wife, ex-Dodgers CEO Jamie McCourt, which helped bring Major League Baseball to his front gate to oversee the team's daily operations. "I'm confident that when the fans understand what's going on here and the fans understand how passionately I feel about this team and this community and how committed I am to them, they will support me," McCourt said from his office in Dodger Stadium. "I have an uphill road here because I've been silent for 18 months."
Kemp Refocuses, Returns To Elite Status
Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp has refocused on baseball and returned to elite status in the game. Kemp leads the Dodgers in runs scored, total bases, RBIs, stolen bases, slugging percentage, on-base percentage and walks. "I had a lot going on last year, and now I come to the field happy, for real," he said. Kemp's 2010 season was full of distractions: a tabloid-covered romance with Rihanna, his first multiyear contract, critical comments from general manager Ned Colletti, lack of hustle and a dugout flare-up that resulted in a benching from manager Joe Torre.
Padres Would Fool With Scoreboard Reading To Frustrate Penny
Former Padres general manager Kevin Towers says the team used to play with the radar readings on their scoreboard to frustrate some pitchers. "We used to dial it down," Towers said with a smile. "I know for a fact that every time Brad Penny pitched for the Dodgers in San Diego it was probably the lowest velocities he ever had. He liked velocity. He'd stare at the board. He was throwing 95-96 (mph), but we'd have it at 91 and he'd get pissed off and throw harder and harder and start elevating." As recently as 10-15 years ago, pitch velocity was the exclusive domain of radar gun-toting scouts. Now, every ballpark in the majors displays velocities.
McCourt: Selig Is 'Ducking Me'
Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said Thursday that commissioner Bud Selig is "ducking" him as he makes his case to retain control over the team. The league has taken control of the franchise in the best interests of baseball and has installed Tom Schieffer as monitor. McCourt has argued that MLB just has to approve a proposed television deal with Fox and uncertainties over his divorce and the finances of the team will disappear. "I want to talk to Bud, and I want to know why he's ducking me," McCourt said during an appearance on MSNBC Thursday. "I'm here to solve a problem, not make a problem, and you know, we'll deal with the next steps if he says. I can't make a person talk to me and can't make a person focus on the issue. "This is a great transaction for the Dodgers and for baseball. It's consistent with transactions approved for other teams. This, I'm not asking for a penny from any other owner or from MLB. I just want to access my capital. That's all I want. I want to sit and talk about it, that's all."
McCourt Blasts Selig, MLB
Dodgers owner Frank McCourt expressed defiance and outrage during a news conference in New York on Wednesday after McCourt said commissioner Bud Selig vetoed McCourt's agreed-upon deal with Fox for a regional sports network. McCourt said the deal would infuse the club with enough cash to be competitive on the field for the forseeable future. McCourt went so far as to describe Selig as "un-American" for what he sees as an attempt by Selig to unlawfully seize McCourt's property.
Ethier Extends Streak To 24 Games
Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier remains red-hot. Ethier singled in the fourth inning on Wednesday, extending his hitting streak to 24 games. The streak is an April record. The last Major Leaguer to have a longer streak than Ethier was Victor Martinez's 25-game streak in 2009. During the streak, Ethier has raised his average from .125 to .381.
Pirates Claim Paul Off Waivers From Dodgers
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle was quiet Tuesday about how he will use outfielder Xavier Paul, who was claimed off waivers from the Dodgers. "We'll let you know when he gets here," Hurdle said. To make room on the roster, left-hander Scott Olsen was transferred from the 15- to the 60-day disabled list.
Casey Blake May Go On DL
Dodgers third baseman Casey Blake likely is headed to the 15-day disabled list due to an infection in his elbow, manager Don Mattingly indicated Wednesday. Blake made a middle-of-the-night trip to a South Florida hospital when symptoms of a bursa infection in his left elbow worsened. He received an IV and antibiotics and was released from the hospital.
Dodgers Tab Wemmer As Security Chief
The Dodgers have chosen former Los Angeles police captain Rich Wemmer as ballpark security chief. The Los Angeles Times reports Wednesday that Major League Baseball, which took over the team last week, must approve the hiring of 63-year-old, who retired in 2008 after 40 years in law enforcement. The top security position has been vacant for four months and became an issue when Giants fan Bryan Stow was severely beaten in the Dodger Stadium parking lot on Opening Day.
Ethier Breaks April Hit-Streak Record
Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier established a new record for the month of April by extending his hit streak to 23 games with a first-inning double.
McCourt To Meet With MLB Over Ownership
Dodgers owner Frank McCourt expects to meet with MLB officials on Wednesday.
Dodgers Begin Navarro Experiment
Dioner Navarro is beginning his second stint with the Dodgers.
Ethier Extends Streak To 22 Games, Ties Record
Andre Ethier's 22-game hitting streak ties the record for the longest ever in the month of April.
J. Thomas Schieffer To Monitor Dodgers
Commissioner Bug Selig has appointed J. Thomas Schieffer, the former president of the Rangers, as the Monitor of the dodgers franchise.
Ethier Extends Hitting Streak To 21 Games
Andre Ethier is one of only three players in baseball history with hits in 21 or more consecutive games in April.
Colletti: MLB Gave Dodgers No Salary Restrictions
Ned Colletti is still reporting to Frank McCourt.
Hong-Chih Kuo To Pitch In Rehab Stint
Hong-Chih Kuo has been on the DL since April 16 with a left lower-back strain.
Mattingly: Missed Sign Led To Steal Attempt
The first steal attempt in the career of A.J. Ellis was a memorable one.
Cubs Angered By Dodgers Breaking 'Unwritten Rule'
Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis attempted to steal with the pitcher up and the team leading 8-1 on Friday night.
A's Co-Owner Denies Interest In Dodgers
Athletics co-owner Lew Wolff is being mentioned as a potential buyer of the Dodgers should the team go up for sale.
Dodgers Activate Padilla
Vicente Padilla is active for the first time this season.
Selig, Torre Conferred On L.A. Ownership Issue
Joe Torre managed the Dodgers for three seasons.
Dodgers Exec: Selig's Move 'Irresponsible'
Bud Selig is expected to appoint a new head of the Dodgers soon.
New Dodgers Executive Soboroff Blasts Selig
Dodgers executive Steve Soboroff came to the defense of team owner Frank McCourt on Thursday.
MLB To Take Over Dodgers
Major League Baseball is assuming control of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Sands Picks Up Hit, RBI In Debut For Dodgers
Jerry Sands was called up to play left field for the Dodgers.
McCourt Got $30M Loan To Meet Payroll
The loan, which came from Fox, is expected to cover the team's expenses into May.
GM Colletti Not Worried About Dodgers Start
Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said Saturday that it's too early in the season to be concerned with the team's level of play.