Lets be honest, this post is simply to mock the other post that tries to proclaim Broxton isn't the guy you want closing Dodgers games.
It was an odd game for sure, especially when Torre pulled Ronald Belisario after he made two guys look silly in Andy LaRoche, and David Ross, making each pop up. Somehow walking Kelly Johnson prompted Torre to pull Pumpkinhead for.... George Sherill. Yes, the reliever who had to pitch two innings, and throw over 40 pitches the previous night. What made it even more perplexing when he did it for PH Greg Norton, who was called to the plate *before* Sherill came in. So its not as if Torre didn't know who the PH was.
Here's the thing about Greg Norton.
- He's a switch hitter.
- Despite switch hitting, he's batting.089/.255/.111 in 55 PAs with 9 walks and only 4 hits all year as a from the left side against right handed pitcher. Belisario is a right handed pitcher.
- As a right handed hitter vs. Left handers, he's batting .333/.385/.417 in only 13 PAs, but I figure nobody's dumb enough to take a pitcher out just to make Norton to face a left hander. Oh wait, there is a manager!
- Anyway, this becomes a moot point because Sherill had nothing tonight. As he walked Norton on 4 pitches. Belisario couldn't do that? Heck, at least with Belisario, we had a chance of his sinking fastball drilling Norton in the ribs and having a good laugh about that.
- Sherill himself had nothing this night. He threw 7 pitches to Greg Norton, and Ryan Church and had one strike, and that was the pitch Church put in play.
Here's the play by play for the 8th inning.
|R Belisario relieved C Kershaw.||0||0|
|A LaRoche grounded out to first.||0||0|
|D Ross grounded out to third.||0||0|
|K Johnson hit for D Hernandez.||0||0|
|K Johnson walked.||0||0|
|G Norton hit for K Kawakami.||0||0|
|G Sherrill relieved R Belisario.||0||0|
|G Norton walked, K Johnson to second.||0||0|
|R Church grounded into fielder's choice to shortstop, K Johnson out at third, G Norton to second.||0||0|
- Annnnnnnnnnnnnnyway, fast forward to the 10th inning. Here's how Mota performed.
|G Mota relieved J Broxton.||0||0|
|M Diaz flied out to right.||0||0|
|A LaRoche walked.||0||0|
|B McCann hit for D Ross.||0||0|
|B McCann struck out swinging.||0||0|
|K Johnson homered to right, A LaRoche scored.||2||0|
|N McLouth hit for K Medlen.||2||0|
|N McLouth walked.||2||0|
|R Church struck out looking.||2||0|
Notice something? That's right, Torre decided that Belisario needed to be pulled despite making left handers LaRoche and right hander Ross to pop up because of a walk to Johnson. Just because for some damned reason Sherill had to face Greg Norton.
So in the same situation in the 10th, after Mota walked LaRoche, Torre had nobody who could pitch in left handers. Because he burned Belisario whose fastball moves so much that it would have probably would have stood a better chance against the straight fastball Mota throws, or Sherill who was burned because he just had to face Greg Norton.
Anyway, yeah. Mota threw a change up right down the middle that Kelly Johnson smashed.
Maybe this will tell Joe Torre that Guillermo Mota is not your savior.