Dodgers Offense Will Need to Carry Depleted Pitching Staff

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The Dodgers are facing a tough road to make it back to the World Series. With the loss of Kenley Jansen, a starting rotation not always looking as sharp as they could be (see Clayton Kershaw, Kenta Maeda), and very close divisional race, the next few months are going to be interesting indeed.

While we worry about the pitching, the offense, at least, seems to be turning in the right direction, especially Justin Turner, Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy.

JT was hit by a pitch in spring training, fracturing his left wrist. When he was activated in May, it aligned with a 25-11 run that turned the Dodgers season around. Turner hit the DL again in July with a strained right groin. He returned to the lineup August 2nd and promptly hit a two-run homer. In his last seven games, he’s slashing .360/.484/.560.

Bellinger has been having a rough sophomore year. Even though he has 19 homers, he has had several long stretches where he hasn’t had any hits at all. Starting August with an 0-for-13 slump, he seems to be turning it around. He broke his previous slump by going 4-for-11 with two extra base hits. Last night in Denver, he was 3-for-4. In his last seven games, he’s slashing .458/.500/.625. His swing looks back to the gorgeous swing we saw last season.

And finally, one of the first half heroes, Muncy may have found that swagger again. He went into a slump after the All-Star Game and participating in the home run derby. From July 26 to August 8th, he had just four hits in 36 AB. He’s 4-for-5 in his last five AB with two homers in two games in Colorado. Muncy is still leading the team in homers with 26.

I’m not going to lie, I’m worried about the pitching staff. They’ve had a lot to deal with in terms of injuries, and with Kershaw not quite himself, no true shutdown starter. Maybe they don’t need one and they can patch together a solid nine innings. Julio Urias may be used in longer inning relief as a bridge to whomever will be closing out the game. Maeda may again be relegated to the bullpen. The Dodgers will probably need to be creative in how they handle this. But the as long as the aforementioned hitters keep their bats hot, along with the likes of Brian Dozier and Yasmani Grandal, they could possibly take some pressure off a depleted pitching staff.

 

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7 thoughts on “Dodgers Offense Will Need to Carry Depleted Pitching Staff

  1. This an incredibly streaking group of hitters. All or nothing group with only a couple of guys hot at any one time. If we can’t get 3-4 guys getting hot through the end of the year then with our pitching we’re in trouble. Time for Turner and Machado to step up and the others will follow.

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  2. I think it’s ironic Andy that nowhere in your article about the Dodger offense did you mention the name Manny Machado and that’s because we haven’t seen the real Manny yet. Although he certainly hasn’t been a negative for us, he hasn’t begun to hit like the guy we traded for. Assuming that happens in the not too distant future and with JT starting to come around, as Rich mentions, the rest of the guys should follow. Our starting eight, when they are hitting as they are capable of, are a very impressive lineup and Turner and Machado are the two guys who shouldn’t normally be all or nothing. They should be “all” most of the time.

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    1. You’re right. I think Manny is taking a bit of adjusting but I think he’ll be fine down the stretch. Maybe the back and forth between SS and 3B affecting him? I don’t know. But I think he’ll settle in. He wants to get paid in the offseason

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  3. This loss is entirely on Roberts. If you’re going to start the 9th with a left hander, bring back Ferguson until someone gets on. No, he has to go with Alexander. Then when Alexander gives up a double, you bring in Chargois, who although he’s been decent, is definitely not ready for high leverage 9th inning situations. So with every decision, he brings in the lesser of the two choices. I’m only astonished that he didn’t bring in Baez to throw the last pitch.

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  4. Soooooooooooooooooooooooo…does tonight’s loss mean Maeda finally gets shuttled off to the bullpen again, especially with Ryu set to come back next week??? Dodgers gonna have to do something to remedy their current bullpen issue with their “security blanket” Jansen out for the month with recurring heart problems.

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  5. Three in a row from Dodger bullpen! Getting a bit scary. But come on Dodger offense gotta give us more than 2 runs at Coors field. Guess they didn’t read Andy’s article!

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  6. No team in the West is playing particularly well of late. Looks like three .500 teams slugging it out.

    2 runs in Colorado won’t often get you a win. If this blind squirrel offense doesn’t get off the mat this staff just isn’t strong enough to carry the team. The “matchup” plan I suggested yesterday is all they can do and with this group it’s a nail biting strategy.

    I’m not crazy about this team, but in our division I like our chances. Playoffs? We’ll blow up that bridge when we cross it.

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