THOMPSON’S TAKE: THE DYNAMIC DODGERS’ BULLPEN, OR IS IT …
You probably know the story by now: Four Dodgers losses in a row, all four a result of a bullpen member imploding upon entering a game with the final score in the balance. And four different men have gone on this mission, only to fail. It has come about because All-Star closer Kenley Jansen is having a relapse of a heart irregular beat issue, brought on by the thin air in Denver last weekend. He’s on the DL with a four-to-six week waiting period before returning.
So what do the Dodgers do in the meantime? Implode?
Jim Thompson drew this one up Tuesday AM as a reflection of what could come for Dodgers starters who can’t make it past the fourth inning. Monday night, Clayton Kershaw went eight full innings, giving up four hits with one run and nine Ks. Could he have saved himself in a 2-1 game? Perhaps, but the pitchcount said otherwise, and he came out, replaced by Scott Alexander … and the rest is an historical meltdown.
“From the Baez to Alexander to whomever, the relief pen is a case of dynamite. It’s not a matter of it, but when…” Thompson writes on www.thompsonsportsart.com as he describes what brought on this illustration:
The small irony to Monday’s loss, perhaps, is that Pedro Baez was brought in to get the final out of the top of the ninth inning against the Giants.
And he succeeded. Usually, it ends up like this previous Thompson illustration of what a Baez bobblehead promotion could someday look like: