Everyone can calm down now. Sure, the sweep against the Giants last weekend was euphoric. And the sweep by the Diamondbacks this week stings something fierce. But everything is going to be fine. Trust me.
- Picking up Hanley Ramirez last week was huge. He has already contributed and the lineup has been lengthened with him in the 5-hole. Though Don Mattingly has suggested that HanRam would play short stop, I disagree with his view. Ramirez is not a fantastic defender at either third base or short. So why expose him at baseball's most challenging position - short stop? And consider your options here both offensively and defensively. Would you rather have a defense of Ramirez and Cruz/Gordon, or a defense of Ramirez and Hairston/Uribe? Too tough to call, perhaps. Now consider both options offensively. See my point? Let's keep Hanley at third.
- When the Dodgers acquired
Jeff KentShane Victorino on Tuesday, I wasn't thrilled. Here's a player that Dodger fans hate, and are now being forced to root for, if not fully embrace. It's difficult, sure. But as long as Victorino produces at a higher level than Bobby Abreu, Juan Rivera, Jerry Hairston, Tony Gwynn Jr., Scott Van Slyke, Jerry Sands, Elian Herrera, and my mom, he'll be an easy upgrade and rather likeable. And look, most of the Phillies lineup has been either injured, or under-producing this season, or both. Victorino should flourish in this Dodgers lineup.
- Don't look now, but Andre Ethier is batting .244 in his last ten games and has hit exactly two home runs during the last two months. But don't forget: that includes some DL time and a huge chunk without Matt Kemp in the lineup. Ethier is due to return to form. Look for him to get hot in August.
- As much as I would have loved for Ned Colletti to have grabbed Ryan Dempster the other day, I am glad that he held his guns. Most experts agree that Allen Webster is worth more than the two month rental in Dempster. Look for Ned to pick up another arm off of the waiver wire this month (heck, I don't think Cliff Lee is a good bargain at $25 million per year, but it could happen). If not, there's always John Ely who is tearing it up at Triple-A.
- Sad to see Josh Lindblom leave. He seems like a class act. Professionally speaking, however, relief pitchers are a dime a dozen. Even if Lindblom becomes a solid reliever for Philly, the Dodgers will find a replacement. Oh, wait. They already have. Welcome to L.A., Brandon League. See how easy that was?
- Here's hoping the waiver wire will produce a first baseman that will let us forget about James Loney and Juan Rivera. It's the last piece to the puzzle.
But that's just my two cents...