Night’s on Fire

Atlanta Braves vs Los Angeles Dodgers
Los Angeles Dodgers Corey Seager hits his third home run against the Atlanta Braves Friday, June 3, 2016 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles,California. Photo by Jon SooHoo/© Los Angeles Dodgers,LLC 2016

“Cue the music out the driveway
Slow summer on a Friday
Here we go again, wild in the wind
Mama knows she’s gonna be late”

~David Nail

 Last week was almost the tale of two different teams. But then again, the games were against the best team in the National League, and then the worst team in the National League. The Dodgers offense sputtered against the Chicago Cubs pitchers, except for the Cubs bullpen in Tuesday’s game, losing three of four against them, then came home to sweep the Braves.

But one constant in the last week has been ROY candidate Corey Seager. In his last seven games, Seager has posted a .370 BA, a .400 OBP and an impressive 1.037 SLG. He had five home runs in the weekend matchup versus the Braves alone, and one more in Chicago. At .286, Corey now has the best batting average on the team, overtaking Adrian Gonzalez, in addition to having the team lead with fourteen home runs. As my Braves fan friend texted me after the game, “He is as advertised!” Watching Corey come into his own, you know the front office was correct to say that he was in no way tradeable.

Not to be outdone, Trayce Thompson also had a fine week. He hit .313/.500/.813 with two home runs and two doubles. He had three steals — all in one game. According to Dodger Insider, Trayce was the first Dodger to have three walks and three steals in one game since Dave Roberts on April 9, 2004. This tweet by Joe Davis says it all…

Now that Carl Crawford has been designated for assignment, Trayce figures to get much more playing time, as he has more than shown that he deserves it. He’s now third on the team with a .279 BA and second behind Seager in home runs with nine. He leads the team in SLG, at .566.

How about Casey Fien? All this guy did was strike out the side against the Cubs in his Dodgers debut. Now in four appearances with 3.2 innings pitched, he’s given up one measly hit, with seven strike outs and a 0.27 WHIP. An impressive start indeed and a wonderful addition to the Dodgers’ bullpen. According to Ryan Walton of SB Nation, the Dodgers bullpen has the lowest ERA (2.47) in the NL over the last 30 days. And according to Ken Rosenthal, they have the lowest opponents’ OPS in the Majors — .598. Sure, giving up three runs late in the game Sunday against the Braves is a bit disconcerting, but mostly the bullpen has been holding their own.

Notable Notes – Enrique Hernandez is five for his last ten with two homers, and could be coming out of his slump. Scott Van Slyke is back with the team after a 15-day stint on the DL. Every Dodger starter had a hit in Sunday’s routing of the Braves. With the St. Louis Cardinals taking two of three from the San Francisco Giants, the Dodgers now trail the Giants by 3.5 games. The Dodgers next three games are against the Colorado Rockies, and the pitching match ups will be Mike Bolsinger against Tyler Chatwood on Monday, Julio Urias against Eddie Butler on Tuesday, and Kenta Maeda facing Chris Rusin on Wednesday.

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