The Empty Uniform Blames the Best Team Money Can Buy

Mark Saxon, writing today on ESPNLosAngeles.com led off his article by describing the Los Angeles Dodgers as “the most expensive team in baseball history”. Well, the best team money can buy is floundering, and all that the empty uniform non manager Don Mattingly, the guy in charge of moulding this group of multi-millionaires into a cohesive TEAM, can say is that, well, “We’re just not that good.” At least that is what Mike Axisa quoted him as saying in HIS article today, on CBSSports.com.

The Dodgers may be in second place, but they trail the first place San Francisco Giants by the biggest margin any first place team in the majors currently enjoys, eight full games. The Dodgers’ $239 million payroll is roughly $80 million more than the Giants are

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paying their crew, and $156 million more than the folks in Oakland pay their team that currently owns baseball's second best record, behind SF.

So why are the Dodgers floundering? Is the teams cadre of rich guys not performing? That's gotta be it, right?

Well, the team is actually third in the National League in runs scored, and the pitching staff is third in the league in ERA, so somebody's got to be
playing pretty well. At last count, the Dodgers had the NL’s top vote getter in All-Star balloting, in Yasiel Puig, the top vote getter at first base in Adrian Gonzalez, and the number two guy at second base in Dee Gordon.

Yet, the 31-30 Dodgers were two-hitted yesterday by the White Sox’ John Danks and their bullpen. Danks went into the game sporting a 3-5 record and a 4.66 ERA, and was coming off four straight losses, including three to the Mets, Padres and Astros, two of whom who occupy the next to last spots in their respective divisions, and the third their division’s

cellar, and who have a combined 81-100 record. Amazingly, the prior game was even more embarrassing for the Dodgers, losing to Hector Noesi, who won his first starting effort in more than two years. Noesi lowered his ERA from 5,83 to 5.29 by allowing the Dodgers a single run over six innings. Noesi improved his lifetime record to 5-19.

I’ve made my feelings known about the empty uniform ever since he was anointed by Joe Torre to succeed him as the LA manager. His contract extension this off season was a slap in the face to every informed Dodgers’ fan who cringes with his mistakes, missteps and miscommunications. What makes it all ever worse is the team still has, sitting nearby, the top untapped managerial talent, wasting away, waiting for a shot.

It’s time to lose the empty uniform non manager, and promote Tim Wallach to the job.

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