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"Lou is not talking about mechanics when he goes out to the mound,"
~Chicago Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Eric Gagne Will Return on Thursday

Eric Gagne has successfully made his journey back into Dodger Blue. Well, he will when the team announces his return on Thursday, June 1st. He completed three AAA stints with the Las Vegas 51's, after recording his second consecutive save this Memorial Day. He threw 17 pitches, 11 for strikes, with a K and a hit allowed.

"You've always got to wait for the official word, but I think I get my say in it," Gagne said concerning his return to Chavez Ravine. The Dodgers, at 29-22, could use him ASAP (who couldn't?!) since they are embroiled within the race for first in the NL West, the most competitive division in baseball. Only 3.5 games separate first from fifth, and they're all over .500. And, with Penny freaking out after his last removal and having arm trouble, the LA Ballclub needs all the good news they can get. And Danny Baez's 9/14 in save opps isn't exactly what Jim Tracy was hoping for out of a stopper.

With Nomar (.362/.427/.606, 34 RBI) and Lofton (.315/.379/.431, 11/11 in SB) having outstanding starts to the season, and the Dodger offense leading the NL in OBP, #3 in BA, #1 in Runs Scored and #4 in fewest strikeouts, all they need is Gagne to close out the close ones. Oh, and the pitching staff is already #2 in the NL in ERA, their eight blown saves was one of the only things holding them back (only the Braves and Marlins are worse with 12 and 10 BS respectively). The race in the NL West is about to get a lot tougher.

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