Scully: Has it been fifteen minutes?
Tracy: We can't wait. The game's tomorrow night. We must strike in the hustle and the bustle beforehand. Tilt his head back. Open his mouth.
DePo: Who are you? Are we enemies? Why am I on this bench? Where's Gagne?
Tracy: Let me explain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up. We lost the entire left side of our infield in the last two games, so all we have to do is go out, get a shortstop, find a third baseman, make up a lineup, and win the NL West title.
DePo: That doesn't leave much time for dilly-dallying.
Scully: You just wiggled your finger! That's wonderful!
DePo: I've always been a quick healer. What are our liabilities?
Tracy: Nakamura can't hit, Saenz can't field, and Perez is still on the DL.
DePo: And our assets?
Tracy (shuffles his feet a little): Well, um...
The last two days have seen both Jose Valentin and Cesar Izturis go down, while the guy who was slated as their back up, Antonio Perez, is still rehabbing his hamstring. Valentin, who partially tore three out of the four ligaments in his knee the other night, isn't expected back until August. Izturis sprained his ankle last night, and is day to day (so far). The irony is that Izturis's back up was supposed to be Valentin. The Dodgers finished up last night with Nori Nakamura at short and Mike Edwards at third, the first time either has played those positions in the majors. Meanwhile, Jeff Kent, the oldest regular on the team, has played every inning of every game because there's been no one to take his place since Perez went down. Sheesh.
So, about them there assets...
Nakamura is an excellent third baseman, and was a big hitter in Japan, but he has yet to show he can hit a major league pitching. He has a very long and very bizarre swing, and it doesn't seem to work very well against fastballs. Olmedo Saenz can certainly hit, and he has played third in his career, but, as another so aptly put it, he fields the position like a baby grabbing at mounds of Cheerios. Edwards, who was just called up from AAA to replace Valentin, is an outfielder who occasionally plays first and third. Jason Repko has played short in the past, but is also primarily an outfielder. Perez still isn't ready to come off the DL. The best prospect in the system, Joel Guzman, is playing shortstop down at AA, but it's assumed DePo don't quite want to start the option clock on him just yet. Also, they're trying to teach him how to play third down there, which is a far better idea than having him try to learn the position in the majors. There is also Jose Flores, who is hitting well at AAA. Finally, the is Oscar Robles, who was in camp this spring, but is currently playing in the Mexican League.
(Not that third was providing all that much to begin with. As much as I've grown to like Valentin's leadership and hard-nosed style of play, he's not a good hitter for the position, and is not yet a good fielder at third. I'm still kind of puzzled as to why DePo likes this guy so much.)
Of course everyone over at Dodger Thoughts has a thought on who DePo should try to get from other teams. Both Mueller and Youkilis were mentioned, but I very much doubt DePo wants Mueller, and I also doubt that Theo would give up the Greek God of Walks. I wonder if the Yankees are desperate enough to trade ARod yet? We could send them Scott Erickson. He's gotta be better than Kevin Brown. (The most bizarre suggestion was someone wondering if the Mariners are ready to give up on Beltre yet.)
There does appear to be at least a hint of desperation in the front office. Mike Edwards was not on the 40 man roster, so someone had to be dropped before his contract could be bought from Vegas. That someone turned out to be poor old Buddy Carlyle, who had just been shipped to Vegas earlier in the day to make room on 25 man roster for Wilson Alvarez, who came off the DL. Although Buddy had his problems with pitch selection, he does have good stuff, and it seems odd that DePo would risk him to waivers.