Padres @ Dodgers Oct. 4, 2015: Regular season finale

Finally, it’s here. After 161 games of baseball, the regular season ends today. With home-field advantage locked up, there would be almost no reason to watch this game — odd, especially since Clayton Kershaw is pitching.

Padres
Dodgers
12:10 p.m.
Los Angeles
CF
Upton
LF
Crawford
1B
Norris
2B
Utley
3B
Solarte
1B
Gonzalez
2B
Gyorko
RF
Ethier
SS
Barmes
SS
Seager
C
Hedges
C
Ellis
LF
Amarista
3B
Guerrero
RF
Jankowski
CF
Pederson
P
Garces (L)
P
Kershaw (L)

But Kershaw has a chance to add another impressive line to his resume. If he strikes out six Padre hitters, he’ll become the first pitcher to record 300 strikeouts since Randy Johnson struck out 334 and Curt Schilling struck out 316 in 2002. Thirteen years, no 300-strikeout pitchers. Seeing as the overall strikeout rate has been up in baseball, that’s almost unbelievable … until you realize it’s 300 strikeouts.

He truly is amazing and I’m looking forward to what the rest of October (and hopefully/maybe November) has in store.

Despite this being a meaningless game in the standings, the Dodgers are fielding a competitive lineup (hard to say with Alex Guerrero in there, but not even one guy can do that much harm).

/looks at the Padres’ lineup
/sees Clint Barmes batting fifth
/questions everything in life

Today’s manager is Jimmy Rollins. The Dodgers have done this in year’s past in the final game of the season (as long as it didn’t matter in the standings). It was Juan Uribe last year. I’m guessing Rollins put Guerrero in the lineup because he wanted some entertainment outside of the actual baseball on the field. Kenley Jansen is the pitching coach. Fun fun.

 

In disappointing-yet-maybe-not news…

Odd. Kiley McDaniel linked Martinez to the Dodgers just before the July 2 signing period began. He had the bonus being $11 million. It’s odd that Martinez hadn’t agreed to a deal until now, seeing as he is 20 years old and was ranked by MLB.com as the top international prospect available (and has somehow slipped to No. 4). This smells of two things:

  1. He was overrated/overvalued from the start and was never an 8-digit bonus guy
  2. Something happened in the last three months to cause his value to plummet

Both are plausible, but I’m inclined to lean toward No. 2 — be it an injury, an off-the-field matter or what have you. My first thought went to Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, who initially agreed to a $48 million deal with the Phillies. After an injury concern presented itself, he ended up signing for $12 million.

I’m a little disappointed the Dodgers didn’t land him, but I’m sure there’s a good reason they didn’t sign him. It certainly wasn’t because he was priced out of their budget (what budget?).

Finally, this.

I think this was expected, but it’s now confirmed. Should be a good series.

About Dustin Nosler

Dustin Nosler
Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosts a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He is a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.