Friday, August 22, 2014

No Kemp For You - At Least 15,000 of You Will Not Get a Kemp Figurine

So, how much do you wanna bet that the cargo ship from China got lost? 

Likely, though, a clerical error has caused a cargo container (or more) to get delayed at customs at the port of LA.  As a result, 15,000 of the Matt Kemp figurines the Dodgers are planning to give away to fans will not be there.

Per a Dodger press release:
Due to unforeseeable circumstances relating to shipping and customs control, approximately fifteen thousand of the Matt Kemp Figurines that were to be given away at Dodger Stadium during the game with the New York Mets on Sunday, Aug. 24, will not be available for distribution. When the supply on hand has been distributed, those among the first 40,000 in attendance who do not receive the giveaway item will receive a voucher which, when redeemed, will be good for one Matt Kemp Figurine.

From Sept. 1-28, the vouchers will be redeemable at the Top of the Park Merchandise Store at Dodger Stadium during games and on non-game days from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week. Fans will also have the option of mailing their vouchers into the Fan Services Department, and the figurines will be sent to them at the address specified on the voucher. Details for redemption by mail will be printed on each voucher.
There are going to be some very unhappy fans on Sunday. 

This problem is reminiscent to the Hello Kitty travel mugs that didn't arrive in time for a Dodger game in July.  In that incident a truck had an accident causing those mugs to arrive too late for the game.

This time it's customs.  Oy Vey!

BTW, a friend of mine who works in shipping tells me that this happens all the time.

Of course, I want to believe that the below happened to the figurines and it's taking much longer than desired to sort things out.

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When Baseball Meets Politics it Becomes Stupid - Cubs Blame TarpGate on Obamacare - I Kid You Not

A few days ago I wrote a fun post poking fun at the Cubs and the Giants subsequent misfortune. 

As you'll remember, Tuesday's game in Chicago was cancelled during the fifth inning due to poor field management (to say the least), so the Cubs where awarded the victory since they were in the lead at that time.  Later on, the Giants protested, prevailed and played the remaining innings a couple of days later.  They lost the resumed game, BTW.

But that's not why I am writing this post.  Instead, a bizarre post popped up by Kevin Drum at Mother Jones who pointed to a National Review article that had me laughing at first, but now has me feeling sad.  For some reason the "TarpGate" incident has gone full-on crazy... like into idiotic brainless babble... It has suddenly become political.


Here's what Ian Tuttle at the National Review writes:
Now insiders at the ball club report that the real culprit is Obamacare. Because the Affordable Care Act requires offering health benefits to employees who work more than 130 hours per month or 30 hours a week (“full time”), the Cubs organization reorganized much of its staff during the off-season. Sources that spoke to the Chicago Sun-Times claimed that, on Tuesday night, the crew was drastically “undermanned.”
Yeah!  Obama did it!

So, the Cubs want to hide their general lack of competence by blaming Obamacare?  Really?  If you've seen the video it's quite clear it wasn't the lack of personnel that caused the problem.  There was more than enough folks out there to get the job done.  They just had no idea what they were doing.  And as Dean Baker at the Center for Economic and Policy Research notes, these employer sanctions are not in effect for 2014, so the Cubs would not have faced any penalties.

The real problem is that the Cubs management is filled with morons.

Or, maybe I'm wasting my time writing this post just so I can put up this awesome video again.

Video Link:

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Mets Series Starts Tonight - Scheduled Autograph Signings, Game Give Aways and Other Stuff!

The next homestand starts this evening against the New York Mets, and several olde-tyme Dodgers will be in the house to sign free autographs for fans.  Below are the scheduled autograph opportunities and other odds and ends for this upcoming homestand.

BTW, the Extreme Loaded Dog concession stands will be making the New York Dog, a all-beef hot dog topped with Sabrett’s onions in sauce, sauerkraut and spicy brown mustard.  It will be available Friday through Sunday at extreme loaded dog concession stands on the Field, Loge and Reserve levels.  Check out a pic on the right.

This weekend is the 7th Anual Think Cure Weekend at Dodger Stadium.  Throughout #ThinkCureWeekend, stadium spectators will have several opportunities to support ThinkCure! and their life-saving cancer research program at City of Hope and Children's Hospital of Los Angeles.  Go here for information.
Friday, August 22nd at 7:10 PM
LHP Jonathon Niese vs. RHP Dan Haren

Tonight's game starts at 7:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 4:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 5:00 PM.  It is Friday Night Fireworks, so fans will be able to go down onto the field after the game.  The theme for the evening relates to the second annual LGBT Night at Dodger Stadium and will feature music by DJ Manny Lehman.

Billy Bean, newly named as MLB’s first Ambassador of Inclusion, will participate in pre-game activities in support of LGBT Night Out. Two-time Grammy-nominated artist Mary Lambert will perform the national anthem. Jesse Tyler Ferguson will throw the ceremonial first pitch. Ferguson is a five-time Emmy nominee for his work on ABC’s award-winning “Modern Family.” Eric Stonestreet, who plays Ferguson’s partner on “Modern Family,” will also be on field for pregame festivities. Stonestreet, a well-known Dodger fan, has won two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as “Cam Tucker.”

Former Dodgers Ken Landreaux (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM.  Then, he will be signing autographs in the Stadium Club from 7:00 PM to 7:30 PM.
  • The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Army Corporal Sudy Ayvazian fof Inglewood. He was drafted in 1943 following the attack on Pearl Harbor and served with the Medical Detachment 23rd Infantry as a non-commissioned medical officer. Ayvazian served in France and Germany during World War II. His accolades include a World War II Victory Medal and American Campaign Medal. 
  • The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) will hold a silent auction on the Club level by the Vin Scully Press Box. The auction ends at 8:45 p.m. with more than 25 items up for bid, including a Clayton Kershaw autographed baseball, Andre Ethier autographed photo and Yasiel Puig autographed Dodger jersey. All proceeds will benefit LADF and its programs in sports and recreation, education and literacy and health and wellness which help children and families throughout the greater Los Angeles region.
Saturday, August 23rd at 6:10 PM
RHP Jacob deGrom vs. RHP Zack Greinke

Tonight's game starts at 6:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 3:30 PM, and stadium gates open at 4:00 PM.  It is "Pups at the Park" night at Dodger Stadium.  So, you should expect to see a parade of dogs from all over the Southland to invade Dodger Stadium at 5:00 PM.  Go here for information about the event.  The Dodgers will donate a portion of the proceeds to Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation.

Ellie Smith will perform the national anthem. Smith will be in Atlantic City representing her home State of Nevada in the Miss America Pageant in two weeks. Smith’s first national anthem performance for the Dodgers was at the age of 9.

Former Dodgers Billy Ashley (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Dennis Powell (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM.  Both will sign autographs in the Stadium Club from 6:00 PM to 6:30 PM.
  • The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Air Force Reserve Technical Sergeant Robert Sumner of Palmdale. He enlisted in 1983 and is a reservist currently serving with the 412th Security Forces Squadron based at Edwards Air Force Base. His duties included flying missions to transport captured Al Qaida/Taliban prisoners. Sumner has served deployments to Egypt, Panama and Afghanistan. His accolades include an Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal with two stars. On behalf of Bank of America, Assistant Vice President, Corporate Recruiter, Global HR Staffing and U.S. Air Force veteran Michelle Fowler will present the Veteran of the Game with a commemorative flag that has been flown over Dodger Stadium.
  • In conjunction with the Boy Scouts of America, the Dodgers will play host to the 13th annual Scouts Day and Egg Drop Contest. Prior to the game, Boy Scouts will be dropping a device containing a raw egg from the top of Dodger Stadium into the Right Field Pavilion parking lot and the goal is to have the egg survive the fall.
Sunday, August 23rd at 1:10 PM
 RHP Bartolo Colon vs. RHP Kevin Correia
Sunday's game starts at 1:10 PM.  Auto gates open at 10:30 AM, and stadium gates open at 11:00 AM.  The first 40,000 fans will receive an Matt Kemp figurine.  Check it out on the right.

Lakers No.1 draft pick Julius Randle will throw the ceremonial first pitch.  Tamar Braxton will perform the national anthem. Braxton will release a new album later this year and can currently be seen in the hit TV series “Tamar & Vince” and “Braxton Family Values.”

Former Dodgers Tim Leary (in right-field pavilion plaza) and Derrel Thomas (in left-field pavilion plaza) will be signing autographs for fans from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM.  Both will sign autographs in the Stadium Club from 1:00 PM to 1:30 PM.

As always, Viva Los Dodgers begins in the Dodger parking lot at 11:00 AM and musical entertainment will be provided by El Gavachillo (WIL-DOG of OZOMATLI), La Nota and Ballet Folklorico Guadalajara..  Al “The Bull” Ferrara will sign autographs from 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM.
  • The Veteran of the Game presented by Bank of America is U.S. Navy Petty Officer Cristina Collesano and her Military Working Dog, Zizi. She enlisted in 2006 to become a Military Working Dog Handler. Both were deployed to Kuwait where they were responsible for keeping several military installations safe. They both retired from active duty service in 2011 and Zizi was adopted by Collesano. After becoming a police officer, she re-enlisted in the Navy in 2014 and now works with a patrol/narcotics detection dog based at Naval Base Ventura County. Her accolades include two Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medals and an Army Commendation Medal.
  • The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) will hold a silent auction on the Club level by the Vin Scully Press Box. The auction ends at 2:45 p.m. with more than 25 items up for bid, including an Adrian Gonzalez autographed baseball, Don Mattingly autographed photo and Matt Kemp autographed game-used #42 LA Dodger jersey from Jackie Robinson Day. The LADF will feature two autographed game-used #42 LA Dodger player or coach jerseys from Jackie Robinson Day at each silent auction for the remainder of the season. All proceeds will benefit LADF and its programs in sports and recreation, education and literacy and health and wellness which help children and families throughout the greater Los Angeles region.

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Blog Kiosk: 8/22/2014 - Dodger Links - Pitching Duel Goes Our Way and Hanley Returning Soon

What a game.  We were witness to an amazing pitching duel between 27-year old Padres hurler Tyson Ross and two-time Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw.  It was great to watch.  Pic above via Jon SooHoo/LA Dodgers 2014.

At one point, Ross retired twelve straight Dodgers before giving up a fluke infield single off his glove to Carl Crawford in the eighth inning.  Kershaw, on the other hand, took a no-hitter into the sixth inning until the Padres pitcher broke it up with a single.

Speaking of Ross' twelve straight Dodger outs into the eighth inning, the very next batter, Justin Turner, did this.

Video Link:

Wow!  And that's why you stay to watch the whole game.

The Dodgers would hold on for a 2 to 1 win, and increase their lead over the Giants to 3.5 games.  The Giants won their regular game, but lost their appeal game against the Cubs earlier yesterday afternoon.  Here are some more links to check out below.
"We just try to pull together. Carl takes a good at-bat, and we get a break, bouncing off his glove. Then I caught a mistake off Ross. It's a pretty good feeling."
"I don't think he did much, just a little bit throwing downhill. It wasn't like a bullpen. It sounds like that went pretty well. So we're happy with where he's at and feeling pretty good about what's going on with him."
  • Via Eric Stephen at True Blue LA, "Dodgers comeback struggles real, but overblown."  He puts it all into perspective.
  • Panini America has a couple of new Baseball card sets coming out on September and they just shared some preview photos of them on their blog.  Check that out here.  First come 2014 Immaculate Baseball, then a week later is 2014 Hall of Fame 75th Anniversary Baseball.  See a couple of the Dodger cards below - Steve Garvey (Immaculate) and Tommy Lasorda (Hall of Fame).
  • Columbia Business School Professor Reviews Data of Nearly 800K MLB Pitches and Finds ‘Star-Struck’ Umpires Show Bias in Favor of All-Star Pitchers.  Check out the report here.
  • Via Hugh Bernreuter at, "Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Jose De Leon breaks Clayton Kershaw's Great Lakes Loons strikeout record."
De Leon struck out 14 Fort Wayne TinCap batters in just six innings, breaking Kershaw's record of 12 set in the Loons' first season. The record of 12 has been tied twice by Victor Garate in 2008 and Greg Wilborn in 2010.

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