Here’s an odd story with odder timing.
According to Sam Strong of the Long Beach Press-Telegram, hundreds of Dodgers fans arrived in Chavez Ravine around 7 PM on Saturday, hours after the team had completed a 1-0 defeat of the visiting Padres. Those fans were unaware that FOX had selected the game for its national broadcast and moved first pitch to the early afternoon. They were issued ticket vouchers for a future home game.
As noted by the Press-Telegram, an advertiser for HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” might have also been thrown off, as an airplane carrying a promotional banner for the show was making loops above an empty Dodger Stadium just before 7 PM.
It all represents the sudden lack of interest in Frank McCourt’s sinking ship.
According to Jon Weisman of ESPN Los Angeles, less than 80 people gathered on a block near the stadium an hour before the actual 1:10 PM first pitch to protest the bankrupt owner with homemade signs and a megaphone. These days in Dodgerland, not even the protests are well-attended.
The Angels announced on Tuesday that P/DH Shohei Ohtani will undergo Tommy John surgery during the first week of the offseason (next week). The surgery will be performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles. The Angels don’t have a timetable for Ohtani’s recovery yet but will provide more information when it becomes available.
Ohtani, 24, underwent an MRI earlier this month which showed new damage to the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. He decided to play out most of the remainder of the season before making a decision. While Ohtani certainly wouldn’t be able to pitch next year, the Angels are confident that he will still be able to function as a full-time DH with no issues.
Ohtani had an outstanding first season in the majors. He hit .280/.361/.564 with 21 home runs, 56 RBI, 55 runs scored, and nine stolen bases in 347 plate appearances. As a pitcher, he posted a 3.31 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 22 walks in 51 2/3 innings across 10 starts.
The Angels have five games left this season, all at home. They have two more against the Rangers, are off Thursday, then wrap up the season with a three-game set with the Athletics.