Chat with Tony Jackson
Welcome to SportsNation! On Friday, ESPNLosAngeles.com Dodgers writer Tony Jackson stops by to chat about the MLB season.
Jackson covered the Dodgers for the Los Angeles Daily News for more than five seasons. He has covered Major League Baseball on a regular basis for 15 years in Denver, Cincinnati and Los Angeles.
Send your questions now and join Jackson Friday at 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET!
Tony Jackson (5:58 PM)
Good afternoon everyone, from Dodger Stadium. Expecting a beautiful weekend out here and an interesting series with the Nats that just became even more interesting. To your questions ...
Was Billingsley's start against Houston an anomaly, or were his previous three starts better than we can expect from him?
Tony Jackson (6:08 PM)
Sorry for the delay. I forgot I booked a Sportscenter hit for exactly the time this chat was supposed to begin. As for Bills, we'll see, but until he proves differently over a long period of time, it's tough for me to believe he is going to be anything other than what he has always been, which is a .500 (or slightly above .500) pitcher who can give you 10-12 wins a year with an ERA that is always going to be slightly higher than what you want from a No. 2 starter.
So far so good but already taxing the bullpen..worried, too early...what do you think? I think this will be a season long issue
Tony Jackson (6:09 PM)
Perhaps, but the only way to solve that problem is for starters to go deeper into games, and that has everything to do with pitch counts. I can't fault Mattingly for the way he has used his pen -- EXCEPT for Wednesday night, when he definitely pulled Ted Lilly too early.
I say closer-by-committee with Javy, Kenley & Josh. Your thoughts?
Tony Jackson (6:10 PM)
Not going to happen, so it's moot. It's going to be Javy unless and until he proves he can't do it (he hasn't proven that yet), and then Kenley, probably for the forseeable future.
Will Kemp stay hot the rest of the year and into the playoffs?
Tony Jackson (6:10 PM)
Only time will tell.
Looks like Matt Kemp is suffering some 2010 baserunning woes. A couple others not looking too great on the paths either. What gives?
Tony Jackson (6:12 PM)
Not sure, but it was addressed in a team meeting on Wednesday. Mattingly talked somewhat openly about it with the media, as did Davey Lopes. They didn't single anybody out or get into specifics, but when it comes to baserunning on this team, it's mostly, usually about Kemp and Gordon, they're the primary threats on the bases. Kemp made three potentially costly mistakes in two games earlier this week, and Gordon's SB success rate needs to be higher, although Mattingly did say it had nothing to do with stealing bases.
Is Bellasario going to play for this team?
Tony Jackson (6:28 PM)
Most likely. He's out of minor league options, and he has to be activated on Thursday. Only alternative is to pass him through waivers, so he's probably coming next week.
Tony Jackson (6:29 PM)
Going to wrap it up here. Thanks for your participation.