Loney Ejected, Dodgers Swept in Doubleheader

By mattgullette

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James Loney was ejected for arguing balls and strikes, and the Dodgers felt a little dejected after getting swept by the New York Mets in today’s doubleheader at Citi Field, 0-4 and 5-10.

After a frustrating first game, Loney was tossed in the fourth of game-two when a disagreement sparked over umpire Angel Campos’ questionable third-strike call, one that subsequently ended a Dodger-rally with bases-loaded. Loney had been swinging a hot bat coming into the series, hitting around .310, but unfortunately he let his hot head get the better of him.

Casey Blake, who replaced Loney at first, went 0-for-1 with an RBI, but it was Reed Johnson who led the Dodgers in offense going 3-for-8 with an RBI on the day, as he replaced an ailing Manny in left field. Speaking of injuries, Rafael Furcal missed part deux of the doubleheader after tweaking his hamstring while running out a double-play in the earlier contest. Just what we need, more injuries.

Scoring, which has been an issue for L.A. as of late, was not so in tonight’s game. It was pitching. Surprise, surprise.

Charlie Haeger (0-3) got roughed up again allowing five-earned in just four innings, bringing his ERA to a McDonald’s value menu-esque 7.45. Haeger gave up five hits and four walks in the nightcap, a performance that I think will ultimately send him packing to the bullpen.

And who could argue?

It seems like Haeger just can’t hit his spots, especially early on in the ballgame, and when you’re a knuckleballer you have very little margin for error in the first place.  Haeger gave up three quick runs to the Mets in the first inning, which marks the second-straight start he’s gotten into trouble early, and he gave up two more runs in the fifth inning.
I think this is a wake up call to Rick Honeycutt and Joe Torre who desperately need to figure out the pitching dilemma.

Unfortunately, with Jeff Weaver and Vicente Padilla both on the disabled list, the Dodgers staff also has very little wiggle room. Maybe it’s time to let loose the reins on rookie pitcher Carlos Monasterios and move him from the bullpen to the starting rotation. Monasterios is 1-0 with a 2.08 ERA in 8 and 2/3, and I wouldn’t doubt it if a move is made sometime next week.

In the meantime, we’re left feeling the Blues after today’s double-dip beatdown. The surging Mets improve to 12-9, winning their sixth straight, while the Dodgers have lost five-of-six and fallen to a paltry 8-12. The Dodgers have won only three of their ten road contests this season, currently taking up last place in the NL West.

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