Los Angeles Times

Can they fold with two aces?


Someone should whisper to the wunderkind execs running the Dodgers that after Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke, the retreads and reclamatio­n projects they keep running out there are not going to get them to the promised land. Sitting on their hands will find the club sitting at home come late October. Bud Chapman Northridge

The baseball world knows the Dodgers are in the market for a starting pitcher, but can Andrew Friedman and his analytic minions be trusted? Their track record suggests that when it comes to pitching, they don’t have a clue. The $48-million gamble on Brandon McCarthy, who had previously made eight trips to the disabled list in his career, was a complete failure. Friedman’s “inside knowledge” acquisitio­n of Adam Liberatore, Joel Peralta and Chris Hatcher from his old team, Tampa Bay, also flopped. Joe Wieland, the starting pitcher obtained in the Matt Kemp deal, has an 11.57 ERA. Let’s not forget that Friedman traded top pitching prospect Andrew Heaney to the Angels, where he is 4-0 with a 1.57 ERA in five starts.

Finally, the Dodgers selected pitcher Walker Buehler in the first round of the June draft, only to find out the next day he needed Tommy John surgery.

It’s too early to pass judgment on the Friedman era, but it’s beginning to look like the second coming of Paul dePodesta. Bob Antonoplis La Cañada

The Dodgers as constitute­d could very well win their division, such as it is, but, wishful thinking aside, they don’t stand a chance against St. Louis unless they make the following moves:

1. Make a deal for a dependable No. 3 starting pitcher

2. Improve the quality and reliabilit­y of their middle relievers

3. And, last but not least, the coaching staff needs to give more emphasis to situationa­l hitting, specifical­ly manufactur­ing runs, taking advantage of what the defense is giving, and working with the hitters to make adjustment­s when the league has figured out how to get them out on a consistent basis (specifical­ly Yasiel Puig, Joc Pederson and Jimmy Rollins). Avrumie Schnitzer Beverly Hills

Is it merely a coincidenc­e that the Angels have moved into first place since Jerry Dipoto resigned as general manager? John Howard Port Hueneme

A look at the Lakers

Judging by the Lakers’ roster, it seems management has adopted the philosophy of former Angels general manager Buzzie Bavasi, who claimed he could replace 16-14 Nolan Ryan with two 8-7 pitchers. Who needs a $20-million player when you can get four at around $5 million each? Ben Browdy Los Angeles

It is time for everyone to be honest and give the Lakers a solid “B” for their off-season moves. We did not get a top-tier player this year, but we got many good complement­ary players and a possible future All-Star. The real test of the Lakers regime will be next year when Kobe’s contract comes off the books. The Lakers family is going to have to make hard decisions and spend money to reclaim glory. The clock is ticking.

Many of my friends have deserted the Lakers to follow an exciting and cutting-edge team in the Clippers. I never thought I would write that sentence in my life. Jon Huff Pasadena

With the No. 2 pick in the draft, the Lakers had a chance for a player in Jahlil Okafor who has variously been described as NBAready, a reliable doubledoub­le machine on a nightly basis, and the next Tim Duncan. He was someone around whom they could have built the team, and will likely be in the NBA for the next 15 years.

Instead, they passed on him for a streaky shooter in D’Angelo Russell who may or may not one day become a superstar.

When your roster is depleted, your team is in tatters and your front office is in disarray, and you have a chance to draft a sure thing like Okafor, you draft the sure thing. The Lakers had the sure bet, and they fumbled it away — just the latest in a series of mind-numbing bad decisions. Eric Marchese Santa Ana


Regarding your article Wednesday about the way DeAndre Jordan and his Clippers associates handled what should have been an upfront situation:

A simple phone call from Jordan to Mark Cuban, telling him that he had simply changed his mind, would have demonstrat­ed some integrity. Instead, Jordan lied to Mark Cuban when Mark drove to meet with him. Jordan texted Cuban saying he was “on a date,” showing he was obviously afraid to man up and do the right thing. Instead he hid behind Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, Steve Ballmer and others who had to babysit a grown man until he signed, clearly indicating they were convinced that Jordan might actually talk to Cuban and once again be fascinated by the last shiny object he saw.

The Clippers do not suffer from a curse, these people simply suffer from a complete lack of class. M.P. Hogue Torrance

So, Austin Rivers agreed to re-sign with the Clippers. That was probably a difficult decision for both parties. Austin must have had multiple offers given his body of work. And after looking at the D-League, Europe, China and restricted free agents, Doc Rivers told the Clippers’ basketball staff he determined that Austin was the best player available.

My guess is all staff currently employed unanimousl­y agreed with Doc. Harry Weinberg Oceanside

Not as advertised

Amazing, really, how easily you can fool 93,000 people. That’s how many showed up at the Rose Bowl to see, ostensibly, Barcelona versus the Galaxy.

What they got, instead for their expensive troubles was a Barcelona “B” team with less than a handful of recognizab­le players participat­ing in each half; and a Galaxy that fielded a complete team of non-starters and kids from the reserve squad for the entire second half.

If this lucrative farce is repeated next summer, shouldn’t there at least be a disclaimer noting that any resemblanc­e to the real Barcelona (or whatever big-name team) and the real Galaxy will be purely coincident­al? John de Jong Long Beach

Shut up, Opens

The U.S. and British Opens turned farcical because of decisions made by the USGA and Royal & Ancient.

The USGA chose a course that provided more weird bounces than honest results. Dustin Johnson’s eagle putt on 18 at Chambers Bay couldn’t have stopped any closer than it did running down the bumpy bald patch.

When the R&A allowed 32 minutes of play in a nearhurric­ane Saturday to count, only some golfers suffered: Jason Day got two bogeys (out of three he made the entire tournament) in that stretch, and yet the R&A did nothing and Day lost by a stroke.

We want golf, not royal, ancient or American tomfoolery. Joel Athey West Hollywood

Tiger should worry less about catching Jordan and Rory and more about staving off Duval and Daly. Larry Yells Hermosa Beach

Tiger needs to start wearing red on Fridays. Keith Schoose Long Beach

So Bill Dwyre tells us that the Los Angeles Country Club, the ultra-restrictiv­e institutio­n that once banned blacks, women, Jews and actors, has been selected to host the 2023 U.S. Open.

There’s a lesson to be learned here. I’m just not sure what it is. Gary H. Miller Encino

The Los Angeles Times welcomes expression­s of all views. Letters should be brief and become the property of The Times. They may be edited and republishe­d in any format. Each must include a valid mailing address and telephone number. Pseudonyms will not be used. Mail: Sports Viewpoint Los Angeles Times 202 W. 1st St. Los Angeles, CA 90012 Fax: (213) 237-4322 Email: sports@latimes.com

 ?? Luis Sinco
Los Angeles Times ?? ANDREW FRIEDMAN, the Dodgers’ first-year president of baseball operations, chats with Manager Don Mattingly during spring training.
Luis Sinco Los Angeles Times ANDREW FRIEDMAN, the Dodgers’ first-year president of baseball operations, chats with Manager Don Mattingly during spring training.

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