NL West Notes: Loney, Ethier, Rockies

Let's take a look at a few items out of the NL West..

  • Andre Ethier backed off the comments he made suggesting that the team was pushing him to play injured, writes MLB.com's Ken Gurnick. Ethier expressed his desire to stay in Los Angeles, and GM Ned Colletti said that Ethier has not requested a trade. Colletti hopes he can extend Ethier.
  • Steve Dilbeck of the Los Angeles Times wonders if a strong finish could save James Loney's career with the Dodgers.  Loney is making $4.785MM this year as he enters his final year of arbitration.  The 27-year-old wants to return to the club but is likely due for a raise that would put him in the neighborhood of $6MM.
  • The Dodgers will also see Andre Ethier enter his final year of arbitration this winter.  Ethier is battling an injury to his right knee that will require surgery in the offseason, but the team is oddly pushing him to play, writes T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times.  General Manager Ned Colletti admitted that the outfielder's poor second-half performance could be slightly advantageous for the club in arbitration.
  • The Rockies have other holes to fill as well, but look for them to prioritize starting pitching this winter, writes Troy Renck of The Denver Post.


Leave a Reply

37 Comments on "NL West Notes: Loney, Ethier, Rockies"


start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
4 years 6 days ago

So basically Colletti is risking paying Ethier to sit on the bench for an extended period of time so he can pay him a few hundred thousand less?

And this year’s winner of the Bill Bavarsi award for incompetence goes to…

East Coast Bias
4 years 6 days ago

That is a horrible stance to take as a GM, privately and especially publicly.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

Assuming it’s true. Then again, a GM does not decide who plays on any given day.

East Coast Bias
4 years 6 days ago

Well, not directly. But he does decide who the manager is, so there’s definitely leverage and weight in a GMs “requests” to a manager on who to play and what not.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 5 days ago

Turns out the story that Ethier was being forced to play hurt was phony baloney. As usual, Simers misquotes or quotes selectively to get his “story,” which is usually about kicking the Dodgers when they are down. What a guy. I hope we’re finished with this game of Simers Sez. Until next time anyway.

4 years 6 days ago

The Loney situation is bad… If your upside is “a poor man’s Mark Grace,” you really need to hit that upside, as there’s not a lot of room for error.

sdsuphilip
4 years 6 days ago

Since Lonely started playing everyday (08) his WAR is 30th at 1B behind beasts like Troy Glaus, Lyle Overbay, and Russell Branyon… its time for Dodgers to move Eitheir to first

4 years 6 days ago

Do the Dodgers have good outfield prospects in place if they move Ethier to 1B? There’s very little on the FA OF market this year. They had Robinson, but they shipped him to Seattle in that multi-team deal.

lakersdodgersyankees4life
4 years 6 days ago

Sands, Russell, Scott Van Slyke to name a few

4 years 5 days ago

Looked those up. Sand to 1B might make more sense than Ethier. Van Slyke is having a great year in AA. Sickels thinks Russell has nice power but strikes out too much. He has him at a C+. Thanks for the names.

lakersdodgersyankees4life
4 years 5 days ago

Sands is the best prospect, but I don’t think the Dodgers will have him at 1B, at least not to start. The reason I say that is because they traded Trayvon Robinson. I personally wanted to have Robinson in LF and Sands in 1b, but I think they traded Robinson to put Sands in the OF. Possibly in RF and then have Andre in LF.

Russell is a interesting guy but has never been able to make enough contact to supplement the power he has. I could see him getting a chance.

Scott is a wild card. A great year, but he has struggled at higher levels before and this is his 2nd time in AA and is a little old for AA. Still, Id want to see what he can do in ST

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

Ethier has exactly one inning of playing experience at first base in his entire professional career. Great idea otherwise. Maybe he can pitch too.

sdsuphilip
4 years 6 days ago

right except if you want him to continue to cost dodgers runs in the OF, playing 1B isn’t that hard.

sourbob
4 years 6 days ago

(As Ron Washington ftom the Moneyball trailer):

It’s incredibly hard.

Seriously though, if he worked on it some this offseason and more in spring training, he’d probably be fine.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

I guess it might be just me, but I don’t see first base as the position where you stow some who can hit but not field. The truth is we don’t know if Ethier has a physical problem that can’t be fixed, and I’ve never been nearly as negative about his defensive abilities as some seem to be. So the issue is, if he’s got an injury he is not going to be extendable or tradable. If Loney stays hot for the rest of the season I’d bet on the status quo at first and right field next year.

4 years 6 days ago

According to the traditionally recognized defensive spectrum, first base is the easiest position on the field. That said, people do tend to be a little glib about how easy it is for a guy to transition over there. Me, I’m in between. I’d want to look at how good a guy’s hands are and how fast his reactions are. My ideal candidate for a move to first is a guy who doesn’t move around so well in the field and/or doesn’t have such a good arm, but is otherwise reasonably agile and sure-handed. Does Ethier match that description? What you don’t want is to kid yourself that you can stash a stone-handed space case at first (Alfonso Soriano, say.)

I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Dodgers non-tender or trade Loney, then browse the non-tenders for an OF to replace him, moving Ethier to 1B. Someone like Andres Torres or Angel Pagan, if they get cut loose, would make sense. Luke Scott will probably be available, but he’s a headcase, so I can’t imagine a team with such recent turmoil taking a chance on him, if he’d even want to come to La-La Land.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

First base may be the easiest position to limit defensive liabilities (particularly a poor arm or speed) but that tends to devalue players who make real defensive contributions at first. A glove like Loney’s can save a shortstop a lot of errors, but since there’s no stat to track that contribution, many fans apparently don’t get it. Convert an outfielder to first just to rest his legs and you get what you get — probably adequate at best. It’s not like Ethier can’t run or doesn’t have an outfielder’s arm.

BrocNessMonster
4 years 6 days ago

Dude. His glove is fine, his range sucks, and his ARM sucks more. He beeds to be at first base. If you had ever played basrball ( your statements have forced me to believe you haven’t) you would know first base is the easiest position to play.

4 years 5 days ago

“If you had ever played basrball ( your statements have forced me to believe you haven’t) you would know first base is the easiest position to play.”
If you’d ever read comments boards before, you’d know that was a lunkhead thing to say.

MattCMoore
4 years 6 days ago

Lmao!! I just saw that 5 min ago!

5_tool_MiLB_fool
4 years 6 days ago

Loney should be kept for the bench and started only if the opposing team is the rockies.

ateam043
4 years 6 days ago

That’s for sure. He only “hits” when the Rockies are in town or the Dodgers are in Colorado.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

He’s been batting well over .400 the entire month of August. I believe some of those games were not against the Rockies. Funny how for some players only their slumps seem to count.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
4 years 6 days ago

Except Loney isn’t exactly breaking out of a slump unless 3.5 years qualifies as a slump.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

Oh come on. Please. Even in his worst season he batted .267. Not great, but not a “slump” by any definition. And if you insist on taking his “slump” back to 2008, that’s a season he batted .289 and hit 13 HRs. Loney’s real slump was the last half of last season and the first half of this one. If he keeps up anything like the current pace for the rest of the season, he’s going to face the Dodgers with a real dilemma this winter.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
4 years 6 days ago

I only brought up “slump” because you did.

My point is it’s far more likely what you’re seeing from Loney is an aberration rather than what he really is. He is simply put one of if not the worst starting first baseman in baseball. Did you really want the Dodgers to spend $6M next year on him?

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

So it’s an aberration when he bats well but normal when he slumps? Interesting reasoning. I don’t get myself involved in how much he gets paid, so my interest is in whether any likely alternative is any better (and I do count both offensive and defensive contributions). I don’t see any first baseman coming up who is any better and I also don’t see the Dodgers making a play for the big name free agents this winter. That is why we’re hearing weird ideas like converting Ethier to first. Whenever I hear stuff like that, I know any prediction I make is going to be pretty tame by comparison.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
4 years 6 days ago

Ummm… what? I never called what he’s doing is a slump… I was remarking on the comment that you implied he was no longer in a slump.

For a first baseman he’s been an awful hitter, for a couple of years now every one who isn’t a Dodgers fan thinks its funny that Loney is their first baseman. Even a Dodgers fan knows that. So why is it a revelation when I say it’s an aberration that he’s been good that you go all crazy?

Seriously, answer this direct question: Do you believe the Loney we’ve seen in the last month is the star of the future or just a guy who will regress lower than his past self?

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

First, the direct answer: I don’t know. And neither do you. One of his “past selves” was a player who batter around .300 with constistency, and some if not a lot of power. So why is it so impossible for him to return to that form instead of the bad form he was in for part of two seasons? That is my direct question to you.

BTW, I’m looking for where I “went crazy.” Seems to me I asked a simple question, nothing more.

ateam043
4 years 6 days ago

Half of his HR’s are against the Rockies….

5_tool_MiLB_fool
4 years 6 days ago

wrong. 6 of 8 are. thats 75%

lakersdodgersyankees4life
4 years 6 days ago

Cmon, Loney is not any argument that a Dodger fan should have. He has been bad for a very long time and there is no way his one month(or colorado) should make the Dodgers want to offer him a contract

thekoshow
4 years 6 days ago

The Rockies needs: SP, SP, SP, SP. RP, RP, RP, RP, RP. 3B, 2B, RF/LF (Whichever one CarGo isn’t playing.)

vtadave
4 years 6 days ago

If you follow LA sports at all, this is just the tool that is TJ Simers stirring things up as usual.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

So true. I wouldn’t repeat a single word he writes.

John
4 years 5 days ago

Non-tender Ethier he’s the most overrated player in the league. I mean 10HRs 51RBI is not what you want from a guy that’s going to get paid12M next year.

BlueSkyLA
BlueSkyLA
4 years 6 days ago

Call it what you like, but it’s not a slump.