Mannywood to return with Manny

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While writers and pundits decry the fact that Manny Ramirez isn’t being made into a total pariah as the result of his drug suspension, the fans are making their thoughts about the man very, very clear:

When Manny Ramirez returns to Dodger Stadium, so does Mannywood.

The fans have spoken, the Dodgers say. They want their “Mannywood”
T-shirts, and their special block of seats adjacent to left field.

When Ramirez was suspended May 7 for violating baseball’s drug
policy, the Dodgers withdrew the Mannywood promotion. He is scheduled
to be reinstated July 3, and the Dodgers plan to reinstate Mannywood on
July 16, in their first home game after his return.

“We decided to reopen Mannywood directly based on our fans’ interest,” Dodgers President Dennis Mannion said.

It’s important to remember that we watch baseball to be entertained.
Manny entertains people, and thank goodness most people appreciate that
that matters way more than the moral of ethics of PEDs, however
interesting a subject it may be.

Yasmani Grandal played himself out of NLCS Game 4

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Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal has not had a good postseason. Entering Monday night’s NLCS Game 3, he was batting .111/.238/.278 in 21 trips to the plate across the NLDS and the first two games of the NLCS.

Defense has also been an issue for Grandal. In Game 1 of the NLCS, Grandal was on the hook for two passed balls. In the sixth inning of Game 3 Monday night, he couldn’t corral a curve in the dirt, which allowed Travis Shaw to score the Brewers’ second run of the night. Starter Walker Buehler was charged with a wild pitch. In the eighth, with Ryan Braun on first base and Shaw at the plate, Grandal again couldn’t corral a pitch in the dirt, allowing Braun to move to second base. Fortunately for the Dodgers, Alex Wood was able to escape the inning with no damage.

Manager Dave Roberts said that Austin Barnes, not Grandal, will start behind the plate for Game 4 on Tuesday night, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. That comes as no surprise at all. When Grandal struck out with the bases loaded in the ninth inning, Dodger fans regaled him with boos.

Barnes will be an upgrade defensively, but he’s lacking with the bat. He had an 0-for-3 performance in Game 2, though with an RBI, bringing his career slash line in the playoffs to .200/.281/.300 across 57 plate appearances. During the regular season, his career 100 adjusted OPS is a fair bit behind Grandal’s 115. Roberts is trading offense for defense in Game 4. Rich Hill will get the start opposite the Brewers’ Gio González.