T.J. SIMERS

Dodgers, Angels are deserving of boos, but it still hurts Matt Kemp

The Dodgers' center fielder is hearing it from the hometown fans as he continues to struggle. Even though he's still hurting, he doesn't want to make any excuses.

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They brought out a group of Wounded Warriors from beyond the center-field fence in Dodger Stadium as everyone cheered.

They spread an American flag across the outfield and had former astronaut Buzz Aldrin throw out the first pitch. Great stuff on this Memorial Day.

Then about 30 minutes later, while Aldrin was probably asking himself, "I came back from the moon for these two underachieving teams?" the hometown fans began booing the Dodgers and Matt Kemp.

BOX SCORE: Dodgers 8, Angels 7

The only question here: What took them so long?

As unlikely as some thought it might be to land on the moon at one time, some might have also wondered when the error-prone Dodgers would win.

But it would prove only one thing: In the race to demonstrate which team really stinks, the Angels would triumph.

The Dodgers won, 8-7, with the fans giving it to Kemp, who was 0 for 5 with four strikeouts.

Just imagine how good the Dodgers might be if they knew how to play, or if Kemp performed like Kemp.

There is no cheering in the press box, as they say, but they didn't say anything about booing.

And I just witnessed the sloppiest two innings of Dodgers defensive play that I have ever seen beyond T-ball, and the Angels' pitching so horrific it was like the Dodgers were hitting off a tee.

But before going into detail, I ask you: Should hometown fans and columnists boo hometown players?

We begin with Kemp, booed loudly the last few days because he can no longer hit, who said it was so bad at one point, "It felt like I was in AT&T Park."

First inning against the Angels, and a ball is hit over Kemp's head. Now he can't catch.

He races back, reaches up and the ball hits directly into the pocket of his glove. What do you do, kids, when the ball hits the pocket of your glove? Squeeze! Kemp drops the ball.

The official scorer rules it a double, the first error of the night for the official scorer.

Then the Dodgers' catcher allows a passed ball on strike three, letting the Angels score. The catcher fetches the ball, throws it over the head of the first baseman, allowing the guy who struck out to advance and another runner to score.

In the second, the Angels hit a hard ball to the Bad News Dodgers' Tanner Boyle, sorry, Mark Ellis. He can't catch it. The official scorer calls it a hit, and the official scorer now has two errors.

There is a bunt, and Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez drops the ball for another error. Cover the eyes of your Little Leaguer at home.

Better yet, tell Kemp to open his.

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