Tag:James Loney
Posted on: May 16, 2010 8:29 pm
 

Dodgers keep winning, hold breath for Ethier

The most significant thing about the Dodgers' seven-game winning streak is found behind the numbers:

They've put all of that together without shortstop Rafael Furcal (strained hamstring) and opening day starter Vicente Padilla (right elbow soreness), who are on the disabled list, and they've won the last two games without Andre Ethier (fractured right pinky).

The Ethier loss is still fluid, and the Dodgers will not know until later this week whether they'll have to place him on the disabled list.

If he misses significant time, it will make life tough on the Dodgers because, as Sunday's games started, Ethier led the NL in all three Triple Crown categories: Batting average (.392), home runs (11) and RBI (38). In fact, he leads the majors in two of those categories -- average and RBI.

Manager Joe Torre said following Sunday's 1-0 win in San Diego that the plan is to "wait a couple of days" and "let some of the soreness come out. Then we'll see what he can do with it and decide if that's enough.

"The last thing I want is for him to go out and do something and get into bad habits."

Ethier injured himself in the batting cage before Saturday night's game while in the midst of his regular pre-game routine. Torre said Ethier's right pinky finger -- on his bottom hand as the lefty swings the bat -- always has had a tendency to slip off the knob and sort of fall behind the bat handle. That leaves the bat handle threading through Ethier's right ring and pinky fingers.

The fracture is in the area of the first knuckle of Ethier's right pinky -- the one closest to the fingernail.

Torre said the trainers will place the finger in "some kind of splint" to immobilize it and hope it calms down in a day or two.

"A lot depends on what we find out over the next couple of days," Torre said. "As far as his comfort level."

In the midst of this, the Dodgers received excellent starts this weekend from Clayton Kershaw and Chad Billingsley and are 12-3 since April 30 -- the best record in baseball since that date.

"It's big because we've put a streak together for ourselves where we've played good baseball and gotten good pitching," Torre said. "We were fumbling around early trying to get a good feel."

"It's been good," said first baseman James Loney, whose clutch home run helped win Saturday's game.

The Dodgers now are 17-7 in games when they hit at least one homer, and 3-10 when they don't homer.

One other significant stat: They're now 12-3 in games against NL West opponents. Cleaning up within the division is exactly how they won the NL West in 2009: They went 46-26 against the Padres, Giants, Rockies and Diamondbacks.

Posted on: October 12, 2008 5:16 pm
 

Garciaparra for Loney in Game 3

LOS ANGELES -- Already in a 2-0 hole in this National League Championship Series, Los Angeles manager Joe Torre has made his first significant lineup change, inserting Nomar Garciaparra into his Game 3 lineup at first base instead of James Loney.

The move was made with Phillies starter Jamie Moyer in mind. Lifetime, Garciaparra is hitting .417 against Moyer, though most of that came earlier in his career when he was with Boston and Moyer with Seattle. Of Garciaparra's 36 lifetime hits against the soft-tossing left-hander, only three have come since 2003.

In playing Garciaparra at first base, Torre is sitting Loney, who is batting .429 (3-for-7) in this NLCS. For the postseason, Loney is hitting .286 (6-for-21) with seven RBI.

But Garciaparra is brittle enough that Torre prefers he not play third base, where Casey Blake is solid (though he's hitting only .143 (1-for-7) in the NLCS and .222 (4-for-18) in the postseason.

 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com