Welcome Back Kuroda-san!

I look at yesterday’s game as something very positive.  It was the return of our pitcher Hiroki Kuroda.  It was 22 days since he was hit in the head by a line drive.  I remember how I felt, that horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach.  I didn’t know if he was alive.  His wife thought he was gone.

Kurodasreturn026.jpg Kuroda image by xoxrussell
He was back yesterday.  Here he is warming up before the game.  He looked unscathed.  In fact he looked great.
Kurodasreturn012.jpg Kuroda image by xoxrussell
I marveled how resilient he is.  He wanted to come back because his team needed him.
Kurodasreturn020.jpg Kuroda image by xoxrussell
He seemed to show no fear. 
Kurodasreturn007.jpg Kuroda on the run image by xoxrussell
He is an example to the rest of the team.
Kurodasreturn010.jpg Kuroda image by xoxrussell
He seemed to be happy to be back with us.
Kurodasreturn004.jpg Hot hot hot image by xoxrussell
The game had a start time of 510pm so it was still hot.  You can see Ausmus with his glove on his head to shield the sun.
Kurodasreturn006.jpg back to the dugout image by xoxrussell
The players were happy to run back into the clubhouse
Kurodasreturn024.jpg Juan Pierre image by xoxrussell
Juan Pierre was in center field instead of Matt Kemp.  I think Matt should always play.  He is strong defensively and offensively.  I suppose he needs some rest sometimes.
Kurodasreturn044.jpg O Dog image by xoxrussell
Orlando Hudson or O Dog as we call him was stretching
Kurodasreturn031.jpg Andre image by xoxrussell
Here is Andre with dark glasses on. 
Kurodasreturn022.jpg Juan image by xoxrussell
Here’s my security person Juan again to remind me not to run on the field.  He must have seen me looking at Andre.
Kurodasreturn046.jpg Bullpen image by xoxrussell
Here comes the relief pitchers with Jeff Weaver and his trademark cup in hand. Our Bullpen has been outstanding this year.
Kurodasreturn052.jpg Russie image by xoxrussell
There’s Russell Martin.  You can see that the shadows are just starting to be cast over the field.  That makes it difficult for the pitcher and the players to see the ball.  Be careful, Kuroda-san.
Kurodasreturn053.jpg Russie image by xoxrussell
There’s Russell looking directly at me.  I thought he was going to say something to me.
Kurodasreturn059.jpg Russie image by xoxrussell
A closeup of Russell
.

Kurodasreturn056.jpg Dr J image by xoxrussell
My best friend Marynell was there working as the stadium doctor.  She came down to visit me.  She looks fantastic with her new haircut, doesn’t she??  She donated her long hair to Locks of Love for children who lose their hair undergoing treatment for cancer.  Isn’t she amazing?  She was wearing a Dodger teeshirt under her scrubs for luck.
Kurodasreturn060.jpg Kuroda image by xoxrussell
Here is Kuroda-san making his way to the Dodger Dugout.  I wonder what he was thinking.  He usually walks with the catcher but I think he had a lot on his mind.
Kurodasreturn062.jpg Russie and Kuroda image by xoxrussell
Russell caught up with him.  I had an emotional day watching the amazing Hiroki Kuroda pitching his heart out.
Kurodasreturn073.jpg Manny image by xoxrussell
Manny had a different Do Rag on his head under his cap.  It was white. You can see that parts of the field are shady
Kurodasreturn079.jpg Raffy and James image by xoxrussell
And the area between first and shortstop are sunny.  How confusing is that??  You can see James Loney at first and Raffy Furcal at shortstop
Kurodasreturn080.jpg Andre image by xoxrussell
There’s Andre loping along
Kurodasreturn076.jpg Good Year Blimp image by xoxrussell
The good year blimp kept flying over the stadium  The sound of the engine kind of creeped me out.  It certainly didn’t bring the Dodgers any “good” luck.
Kurodasreturn151.jpg Changing pitchers image by xoxrussell
There seemed to be quite a lot of discussion around the pitcher’s mound.  Maybe they’re trying to figure out what happened to the Dodgers offense.  I wish they would tell Joe Torre.
Kurodasreturn144.jpg More discussion image by xoxrussell
Even more discussion.
Kurodasreturn226.jpg Heath Bell image by xoxrussell
Oh no Heath Bell!!!
 
Kuroda did well considering he had not pitched in 22 days and seemed a bit rusty finding the right location. 
The Dodgers actually came within one run with a double by Andre Ethier in the seventh inning scoring Loretta and Furcal to make it 4-3.
The Dodgers did have 8 hits but they need timely hits.  Their offense has taken a dive.  I hope that they overcome whatever problems they are having. 
This series with the Padres taught me something.  I was much more open minded about the other team.  I looked at them as favorites of Kaybee and Hyun Young and could see why they love their team so much.  Some comments made by Bud Black the manager made me have even more respect for him.  He had spoken of the Dodgers as a team with balance, a team with no real holes.  He also felt that they had shored up their bench and added depth.  This was before yesterdays game.  I already decided I liked him when he signed Hyun Young’s ball for me.  So young lady, treasure that ball signed by a true gentleman.
Today’s game is already underway.  I had stopped writing this entry to take my Dad out to get a Happy Meal from MacDonalds.  He loves the french fries.  It is Labor Day and I thought I would treat my Dad.  Hopefully the game goes the Dodgers way.  They need it to keep their spirits up. 
Have a beautiful Labor Day.  Thanks for stopping by everyone and also thanks again for making my blog #31.
Go to fullsize image
Mmmmm, these french fries are goooood. 
 
 
 

13 comments

  1. southernbelle

    Cat: Great post, as always. Glad to see Kuroda on the mound again. Your security guy came over because you were looking at Andre, lol. He would have had to restrain me, I might have ran over to him! Right now my Yankees are not hitting. They have 3 hits and 1 run in the 6th. We are tied up with the Rays 1-1 now. There is a doubleheader today, so that’s fun.
    I cannot WAIT for tomorrow!!! Thank you so much, Cat! This means so much to me! -Virginia
    http://southernbelle.mlblogs.com

  2. raysrenegade

    Cat,
    I was in the same mindset as Kuroda’s wife on that play.
    The video really showed the violent extent of that play.
    For him to even move a bit on the mound was a positive sign.
    But then again, for years I used to joke as an ex-professional athlete that “we are all blockheads and have a ton of cement in our heads.”
    But the game calls to us likthe sirens on the rocks to sea captains.
    We may die on the jagged rocks, but it is in presuit of the game we love and enjoy like a fine wine.
    Great he is smiling and throwing just less than three weeks later.
    Great post.
    Fantastic series of pictures too.

    Rays Renegade

    http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

  3. TribeTed

    Cat:

    congrats on being the #31 blog on the top 100.

    I was right behind you at #35.

    Great blog you have here:

    and I love the cat!!

    By the way – do you go to every Dodger game?

    If so — you must be lucky.

    I would kill for Indians season tickets!!

    –Ted

    http://tribewithted.mlblogs.com/

  4. Jane Heller

    It was great to finally “meet” your friend Marynell with that pic of her. How wonderful that she donated her hair. Very cool. Glad you had a good Labor Day with your dad. I’m watching the Yanks in their second game of the day. Lots of baseball in the Bronx!

    http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

  5. thinkingblue

    HEY CAT,
    It’s been a long time since I’ve visited your blog (well atleast it feels that way). But I am glad KURODA is back. I just had my family reunion and one of the big prices (raffle item) they had this year was 2 tickets to the Dodger’s game. Just about everyone there wanted them. Nope I did not win (my number was called right after that one) and I won the Angel tickets. I gave them to my in-laws since he is a big Angel’s fan. I can not believe the Padres took that series. What is up with our boys? Well I hope our boys do better with the D-backs then the last 2 times we played them. GOOOOO DODGERS!

  6. devilabrit

    Congrats on #31, it’s always nice to get a player back at this time of the season… and I couldn’t put french fries that close to my cat, he’d take a mouthful and run… watch out for those Rockies…
    ~peter
    Outside the Phillies Looking In
    http://devilabrit.mlblogs.com

  7. TribeTed

    Congrats on #31.

    4 in fronta me. 🙂

    And Kuroda-san isn’t lookin bad at all is he?

    Keep it up buddy.

    Welcome back.\\

    He is surely a fun guy to watch.

    I enjoy player’s like him//

    your lucky to have him on your team!!

    Good luck in the playoffs:

    if the Rockies don’t catch ya.

    –Ted “TTW/T” —

    http://tribewithted.mlblogs.com/

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