Thursday, March 27, 2014

Dodgers Notes from Spring Training: March 27, 2014 vs. Angels

Throughout Spring Training the Dodgers PR department sends out helpful daily notes from Camelback Ranch, and I am happy to pass them along.  See what they've written below.
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Los Angeles Dodgers
LHP Hector Santiago vs. RHP Zack Greinke
Thursday, March 27, 2014, 7:10 p.m. | Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA
TV: SportsNet LA RADIO: AM 570 KLAC (ENG)
(Dodgers lineup via @Dodgers on twitter)

(Tommy Lasorda sharing some cannoli's, pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014)

BACK TO SPRING TRAINING: After opening the 2014 Major League regular season with a pair of games against the D-backs in Australia last weekend, the Dodgers return to exhibition play and take on the Angels tonight in the first of three Freeway Series games. Los Angeles won the Freeway Series last year, 2-1, and then the clubs split their four regular season meetings, with each club protecting their home field. The clubs tied, 4-4, in their only Cactus League game on March 6 in Tempe and will play four times during the regular season, two games at Dodger Stadium, August 4-5, and two games in Anaheim, August 6-7.
  • The Dodgers open their North American slate on Sunday evening against the Padres on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball. Los Angeles will also battle the Padres on Tuesday and Wednesday before its home-opener on Friday, April 4 at 1:10 p.m. against the Giants.
  • One of the world’s top jockeys, Victor Espinoza, will throw a ceremonial first pitch tonight. Espinoza, who has won more than 3,000 races in his career, will ride the favorite, California Chrome, in next week’s Santa Anita Derby.
(The crowd at Camelback, pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014)

LIFE IN THE DESERT: The Dodgers went 6-10-5 during Cactus League play as they matched a Los Angeles record for Spring Training ties set in 2006 (15-13-5). In 12 home dates at Camelback Ranch – Glendale, the Dodgers drew 114,402 fans, with an average crowd of 9,534, their highest average since moving to Arizona in 2009.

ROSTER ROUNDUP: The Dodgers have made several roster moves since returning from Australia. On Monday, infielder Alex Guerrero was optioned to Triple-A Albuquerque and outfielder Carl Crawford was reinstated from Paternity Leave, while yesterday right-handed pitchers Seth Rosin (Rangers) and Javy Guerra (White Sox) were claimed off waivers. The Dodgers now have 39 players on their 40-man roster.
  • Guerrero will remain with the Dodgers for the Freeway Series and tonight, the club will also supplement its roster with minor leaguers C Tim Federowicz (#26), RHP Sam Demel (#38), RHP Zach Lee (#64), RHP Red Patterson (#78), C Jose Capellan (96), INF Miguel Rojas (#72), INF Corey Seager (#94), INF Darnell Sweeney (#87), OF Joc Pederson (#65) and OF Trayvon Robinson (#90).
(Hanley Ramirez in Australia, pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014)

DOWN UNDER: The Dodgers returned from Australia on Sunday afternoon following a week Down Under, with a 4-2 exhibition victory over Team Australia and two regular-season wins over the Diamondbacks. Scott Van Slyke was the offensive hero in the season-opening 3-1 victory with a double and a two-run homer in support of Clayton Kershaw, who struck out seven and allowed one run in 6.2 innings. In the series’ second game, Hyun-Jin Ryu fired 5.0 scoreless innings and Dee Gordon, Juan Uribe and Yasiel Puig chipped in three hits apiece in the club’s 7-5 win.
  • The Opening Series marked the first time that the Dodgers played regular season games outside of North America and the club’s ninth official team trip abroad: 1956 (Japan, postseason), 1964 (Mexico, preseason), 1966 ( Japan, postseason), 1991 (Mexico, preseason), 1993 (Japan/Taiwan, postseason), 2003 (Mexico, preseason), 2008 (China, preseason) and 2010 (Taiwan, preseason).

ALL DODGERS, ALL THE TIME: All three of the Freeway Series games will be televised by SportsNet LA, the exclusive new 24/7 TV network of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The network takes fans behind-the-scenes with the team and offers in-depth access to the organization, providing an immersive experience with never-before-seen content and thousands of hours of comprehensive Dodger programming. SportsNet LA will televise more than 140 live regular season Dodger games, plus a full slate of original, classic and live studio programming that focuses only on the Dodgers, covering the team in a way that it’s never been covered. 

NEW AND IMPROVED!: Last night, the Dodgers held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the latest round of stadium improvements, which included:
  • Expansion of the entries at the field level, with two new 25,000 square-foot plazas in right and left field.  Each plaza houses a 5,000 square-foot new team store, tickets and concessions space, as well as memorabilia to celebrate Dodgers history.
  • Seating and lounging areas at bars and drink rails overlooking the bullpens in the outfield, giving focus to pitchers warming up, as well as infield game views. 
  • Two new restaurants in the outfield entrance plazas; Tommy Lasorda’s Italian Trattoria, in the right-field area of the plaza, and THINK BLUE BBQ in the left-field area of the plaza.
  • A new state-of-the-art public wireless system.
(At the ribbon cutting ceremony, pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014)

CHECK IT OUT: On Saturday, Dodgers: Brotherhood of the Game, a new exhibition exploring the team’s storied past through four players and a Hall of Fame manager, will open at the Japanese American National Museum. Jackie Robinson, Fernando Valenzuela, Chan Ho Park, Hideo Nomo, and Tommy Lasorda—each of whom made history in his own right—will be prominently featured, as will owners Branch Rickey, Walter O’Malley, and Peter O’Malley. The exhibition continues through September 14.

UP FOR THE CHALLENGE: MLB’s new instant replay system will be on display for all three Freeway Series games as managers will have the ability to challenge one call through the sixth inning (and receive another challenge if successful) and be able to request a review of any play after the seventh inning. Los Angeles had five test runs with the system in Cactus League play.
  • Another addition for 2014 is experimental rule 7.13, which regulates home plate collisions.
(Wright, Jansen, Howell and Greinke go through drills, pic via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014)

ZACK ATTACK: Zack Greinke will make his third official start of the spring tonight after going 0-1 with an 11.57 ERA (3 ER/2.1 IP) in two Cactus League starts. Greinke suffered a mild right calf strain in his first start of the spring Feb. 27, causing him to miss two weeks of game action and the Australia trip. Greinke last pitched on Saturday against Cleveland’s Single-A team in Glendale, allowing just one run on three hits with eight strikeouts in 5.0 innings.
  • Greinke made 13 starts for the Angels in 2012 after he was acquired from Milwaukee in a midseason trade and has gone 1-4 with a 4.10 ERA (24 ER/52.2 IP) in nine career games (eight starts) against the Halos.
  • J.P. Howell is also expected to pitch tonight after walking one and striking out one in 0.2 innings of relief in Sunday’s win over the D-backs in Australia. Howell went 0-1 with a 3.18 ERA (2 ER/5.2 IP) in seven Cactus League appearances.
  • Brian Wilson struck out two in a scoreless eighth inning on Saturday against the D-backs in his last appearance. He allowed two runs in 4.1 innings in five Cactus League appearances.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

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