In what is a very crucial series, the Dodgers saw their lead diminish to only 1.5 games ahead of the red-hot San Diego Padres after the first game. All seemed well when the Dodgers were leading 1-0, but then came the 7th inning and the Padres just mounted it on for a 7-2 victory.
Many Dodger fans were worried that this was the beginning of the Padres overtaking the crown in the West. I’d personally say to remain relaxed, as the Dodgers still are one of the better teams in the majors. They’ve only lost one series this entire season, so it is a possibility they can win the remaining two games. While the remaining schedule does favor the Padres—closing out the season playing the Mariners, Angles, and Giants—the Dodgers finish with the Rockies, Athletics, and Angels.
The Dodgers and Padres currently have the two best records in all of baseball, so it will be a fun pennant race. However, the Dodgers have been here before, most recently in 2018 when the division came down to a Game 163 between them and the Rockies. An eighth consecutive division title certainly would be nice. However, if the Dodgers somehow lost the division and finished in second, this year would probably be the one where they can afford it. We all know what the main goal is for this team, and they’ll be in the postseason with one of the more talented rosters.
Losing the division will most likely drop down the Dodgers to the fourth spot and in a matchup against the fifth-seeded Marlins. Teams between the 5-8 spots are all hovering around or below
.500. Just today, MLB and the players union agreed to host the postseason in a bubble setting, with the World Series taking place at Globe Life Field home of the Texas Rangers. Dodger Stadium will also host a playoff series for the American League. So with neutral sites and no fans, this will be a postseason like no other.
The Dodgers will get a big bat back into their lineup on Tuesday night. Justin Turner was activated from the 10-day injured list, as he’s expected to be the designated hitter to ease back in. Turner had missed 14 games going down with a left hamstring strain, he’s hitting .282 on the year with 20 RBI and two home runs. To make room for Turner the Dodgers optioned right-handed pitcher Josh Sborz.
Tony Gonsolin will start the second game of the series Tuesday against the Padres. The last time out for Gonsolin was in relief when Dustin May had to exit the game taking a liner off his foot. Gonsolin has pitched quite well this year, positing a 1.57 ERA in 28.2 innings, his WHIP stands at 0.84.
Gonsolin will oppose right-handed pitcher Zach Davies, who they’ve faced once before this season. In that contest, Davies only allowed two runs over seven innings at Dodger Stadium. If anything, this has been a nice preview of postseason baseball.
From a baseball fan perspective, this pennant race is absolutely fun. From a Dodger fan perspective, it’s nervously sitting on the edge of your seat for every pitch and swing.
First pitch Tuesday is set for 6:10 p.m, Pacific time.