The Dugout Mail Bag

Questions keep arriving at and while we try to answer each one personally, we will from time to time report both the question and our answer here. You are invited to send your question to either Publisher Tot Holmes or Minor League Editor Bill Shelley and we will get back to you with our opinion.

Question: The Dodger stolen base by catcher record apparently was set in 1892 see game article on you list the record as 16 set in 1904. What's up? -- Mike.

Mike - Stolen bases were awarded differently before 1898 -- any extra base you advanced on a hit or out became a "stolen base." So there are two different sets of records, before and after 1898. Since you cannot compare apples and watermelon, I choose to stay with the stolen base that are awarded the way they are today, thus I don't use the other ones, leaving the record at 16, a mark Russell Martin could get before the all-star break. The Dodgers recognize Monte Ward's 88 steals in 1982, Hub Collins 80 in 1890 and Ward's 57 in 1891. For example, in 1890 the Dodgers "stole" 409 bases in a 158 split-season or over 2 1/2 per game.

Question: I am a Braves fan and have tried for the last 2 games to tolerate the non-stop talking by Vin Scully. I don't know why I haven't heard him before on baseball, usually golf. It seems to me that he thinks he is calling for radio instead of television. It is so annoying to hear him tell us everything we are watching. On 7-2 or 7-3 Braves game with Dodgers he actually is telling us that John Smoltz is bending over and now standing up and now delivers a pitch. This is ridiculous. Am I the only one that finds this annoying? Tonight I'm watching the game again but with the TV on mute. He may be great - but not to me. Frank.

Frank: This is sort of like the man who went to the doctor and said, "When I raise my arm over my head, it hurts. What can I do?" The doctor said, "Then don't raise your arm over your head." Hall of Famer Scully was selected as the broadcaster of the century and has more awards for his many years of work than any other broadcaster in history. Like the doctor, my only advice is "don't listen."

Question: What ever happened to Buddy Carlyle who pitched briefly for the Dodgers?

John, after struggling in the minor league after leaving Los angeles, Carlyle has caught on with the Atlanta Braves as a starter and is doing well. He always seemed to pitch two or three innings, then get hit hard. I have wondered why someone hasn't used him exclusively as a reliever.

Question: There was a great furor when Joel Guzman was traded, with dire predictions that he would come back to haunt us by hitting 50 homers. What's he doing? Charles.

Charles: Guzman, the Dodgers Player of the Year who had a very brief trial with the Dodgers in 2006, is playing with the Durham Bulls, Tampa Bay's AAA franchise. It did seem as if he had an unlimited future but he hasn't been able to realize it yet. At last check he is hitting .217 with seven home runs and 25 runs batted in over 180 times at bat but the kid is still young.
Question: The rumors have an assortment of our young players being traded for a veteran pitcher or a veteran power hitter. How do you see it. Maurine.

Maurine: You must be a new subscriber or you would know our thinking about trading your tomorrow for an often brief today. Having said that, the staff close to the players must be talented enough to have a handle on the upside of each prospect and can judge their expendability. Joel Guzman may be an good example of that and Franklin Gutierrez, Joe Thurston and Jonathan Figueroa also come to mind as players with a seemingly bright future that never quite bloomed, while we completely underestimated the worth of Paul Konerko and Adrian Beltre.