Mark DeRosa: my wrist surgery was "a total failure"

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Mark DeRosa swing.jpgMark DeRosa has numbness in the ring and pinky fingers of his left hand, preventing
him from swinging the bat effectively.  “I feel like my bottom hand’s underwater. I don’t have much feeling in
my bottom two fingers,” he says.

This is bad enough as it is, but what makes it worse is that this sort of thing was supposed to have been corrected by the offseason surgery he had. Now he’s calling that surgery a “total failure,” and he’s considering having another surgery because he simply can’t hit the ball.  Attention Mark DeRosa’s surgeon: put your insurance carrier on notice.

But I’m less interested in the specifics of DeRosa’s wrist injury as I am in his anecdote about how it’s affecting him:

DeRosa last played Saturday, when he went 0-for-5 at New York and didn’t
hit the ball out of the infield in three at-bats against Mets starter
Johan Santana.

“It came to a full head in my second at-bat,” DeRosa recalled.
“[Santana’s] throwing 88, 89 [mph] and I was sitting on a middle-in
fastball. It was there on a tee. I went to move on it. When it came out
of his hand, I [said], ‘This is a bare minimum double to left-center.’
The next thing I know, it’s a weak popup to second base.”

What does it say about Santana’s velocity that his pitches are being referred to as being “there on a tee” by a middlin’-at-best super utility guy?

Dodgers top Giants, clinch fifth straight NL West title

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The Dodgers are NL West champions for the fifth time in a row. They clinched with a 4-2 win over the Giants on Friday night, taking their first and only lead on a mammoth record-breaking home run from Cody Bellinger in the third inning.

Rich Hill turned in another quality start, going six innings with five hits, a run and nine strikeouts to keep the Giants at bay. He tacked on an RBI hit of his own, too, lashing a double to left field for his first extra-base hit since 2007.

The Giants, meanwhile, deployed Jeff Samardzija and his 4.42 ERA for 4 1/3 innings. Samardzija was on the hook for the Dodgers’ four-run spread in the third and took his 15th loss of the season. Pablo Sandoval came through with a solo home run in the ninth, but the rest of San Francisco’s offense wasn’t so lucky against Kenley Jansen, who struck out the side to clinch the game — and the division.

After Friday’s showstopper, the Dodgers are just two wins away from their first 100-win season since 1974. If they win the remaining eight games of the season, they’ll beat out the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers for the most wins in franchise history.

Watch: Cody Bellinger breaks NL rookie home run record

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Cody Bellinger helped the Dodgers to their first lead on Friday night, going deep for his 39th home run of the season and setting a new National League rookie home run record in the process. With two on and two out in the third inning, the Dodgers’ slugger launched a 2-1 pitch from the Giants’ Jeff Samardzija, skimming the right field fence to give the team a three-run cushion:

The three-run bomb was Bellinger’s sixth of the season. In what is undoubtedly a Rookie of the Year award-worthy campaign, he’s logged 21 solo shots, 11 two-run blasts and a single grand slam. His historic home run topped former NL rookie leaders Frank Robinson and Wally Berger, at 38 homers apiece.

The Dodgers need to stay on top of the Giants to clinch the NL West or, barring that, have the Marlins pull off a win over the Diamondbacks. They currently lead the Giants 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Marlins, meanwhile, are staying just ahead of the D-backs with a 9-7 lead in the top of the sixth.