Friday, June 09, 2006

The Dodger Farm

Dodger Thoughts points to a great Daily News article about the Dodgers Director of Player Development Terry Collins. He has been an important cog in the Dodgers recent success with its rookies.
The laid-back, congenial (Logan) White is the man generally credited with building the Dodgers' pool of minor-league talent. (Terry) Collins, who is part drill sergeant and part father figure, is the man who is developing them. Or, as he would prefer to put it, the man who hired the managers and coaches who are developing them.
There is a great story about his influence on Mariano Duncan.
Mariano Duncan was done with baseball. Or so he thought...

"I was so upset that I packed all my stuff," said Duncan, now the Dodgers' first-base coach. "I was going home to the Dominican."

That's when Terry Collins... gave him a typically Collins-esque pep talk.

"I felt he needed to be challenged, and he needed to face that challenge," Collins said. "I told him he was going to continue to battle, that he wasn't quitting and that he needed to get his (rear end) out there and get better until he got back to the big leagues."

The discussion was loud, one-sided and not for the easily offended. But it was effective.

Mariano endedup with a long Major League career.

Check it out.

Luke in Blue??

I guess I spoke too soon. Luke will be wearing Blue. It'll just be Kansas City Blue. He was taken 1st in the 2006 draft and will be asking in the neighborhood of $5 million for his services. That's a lot of dough for a player not yet tested on the grand stage. Good luck in the Baseball wasteland we call Kansas City. At least it wasn't Tampa Bay.

Kemp: Guided by Family and Friends

What does it take to be a success? Well, the LA Times has a great article today about the current successful path taken by rookie phenom Matthew Kemp. He's a man with a great foundation. He has a family that has been there to guide him along the way. He has friends who have steered him right. After having my first chance to see him play this year on Wednesday (after my week long vacation) I am very impressed with the tools he brings to the table. Apparently, Grady Little saw his potential in Spring Training and subsequently made inquiries about Matt when the outfield was ailing. Then, the team brought him up and now it may be very difficult to send him back down. I guess the questions right now is: Do you send Matt down for additional seasoning when folks come off the DL, or is Matt here to stay?

Matt Kemp's game-by-game record with the Dodgers:

Date Opponent AB R H HR RBI
May 28 Washington 4 0 1 0 0
May 29 Atlanta 3 3 2 0 2
May 30 Atlanta 0 0 0 0 0
May 31 Atlanta 3 0 1 0 0
June 1 Philadelphia 3 2 1 1 3
June 2 Philadelphia 3 1 1 1 1
June 3 Philadelphia 4 1 1 1 2
June 4 Philadelphia 4 0 1 0 0
June 5 N.Y. Mets 1 0 0 0 0
June 6 N.Y. Mets 4 1 2 1 2
June 7 N.Y. Mets 4 0 1 0 0
Totals 33 8 11 4 10
Batting average: .333