Don Mattingly: Right Idea, Wrong Execution

How did I feel about Don Mattingly‘s decision making in the bottom of the fifth against the Padres yesterday?

Yeah, that basically sums up my thoughts on Mattingly’s managerial skills in yesterday’s game. Good idea, bad execution.

Up five runs to none in the bottom of the fifth inning, starter Chris Capuano was struggling mightily with his control. After getting a strikeout to begin the frame, he gave up a single, a walk, got a force out, and then walked the next two batters.

Now most managers would let their starter try to get the last out of the fifth inning in this scenario because of the vaunted pitcher win, but it’s an inherently stupid thing to let influence decision making since it’s a meaningless statistic, especially when the game is on the line.

As such, Mattingly made the right call by pulling Capuano, who had been iffy with his control all day (even by his own admission in the post-game interview), but negated that decision by bringing in Jamey Wright, who was essentially the last man to make an eight-man bullpen out of Spring Training.

That one out is the highest leverage situation of the game (or will lead to it) because it either keeps the game at a four-run lead or it starts a chain reaction that implodes the game for the Dodgers. As such, it’s a perfect opportunity to use Kenley Jansen, probably the best reliever in the pen, But even if that’s too unconventional, why not veterans like Todd Coffey or Matt Guerrier? That’s what the Dodgers are paying them for, isn’t it?

The decision was half right, but half right is still wrong.


In transaction news, Carlos Monasterios was released by the team yesterday.

The Dodgers have released right-hander Carlos Monasterios, who pitched in 32 games for them in 2010 but has since required two elbow operations.

Monasterios, 26, was a Rule 5 Draft pick who went 3-5 with a 4.38 ERA in 2010, when he started 13 games and spent the entire season in the Major Leagues. But after making one start at Triple-A last year, he required Tommy John elbow reconstruction and missed the rest of the season.

He encountered further arm problems after reporting to Spring Training this year and at the end of March underwent surgery to relocate the ulna nerve.

He looked to be solid front-end bullpen guy, long man, and spot starter, but injuries really derailed a potentially decent career.

About Chad Moriyama