With a win over the Giants on Friday evening, the Dodgers clinched the 2017 National League West Division Championship. It’s the Dodgers’ fifth straight and 16th overall NL West title, as the club reached the postseason in five consecutive seasons for the first time in franchise history.
At this point, really, is it any surprise? Sure, the Giants are a gazillion games behind the Dodgers, a season best left forgotten. But still, this is the hated Dodgers these Giants are facing, and LA has already won the first two games. Madison Bumgarner is moved up specifically to start this game. And he pitched incredibly well, going seven innings and allowing only five hits, no runs, one walk, and striking out seven against one of the best offenses in the major leagues. But at the end, that didn’t matter.
While many baseball fans around the globe tuned into the 2017 MLB All-Star Game expecting an offensively dominant showcase of fireworks, the almost complete opposite occurred — a display of superior pitching with a few timely hits sprinkled in along the way.
This team. Every time you think a game’s over, it’s not. There’s always something happening, someone else stepping up to do the damage. Thursday night was another wild ending that resulted in a walkoff win for the Dodgers.
While lefty Alex Wood was busy providing the Dodgers with yet another stellar starting pitching performance at the big league level on Wednesday evening, outfield prospect DJ Peters continued his recent domination with the lumber in the California League.
Yesterday on Twitter, I joked that maybe I would just write a column today based on all the insane stats these 2017 Dodgers have piled up. That in itself would be a pretty awesome piece. Heck, I could just fill a piece on Cody Bellinger stats alone and it would be an unbelievable and intriguing read.
So, it just might be that these Dodgers are pretty good. After sweeping a four-game series with the Mets, they head into a series with the second place Colorado Rockies riding a seven game winning streak. They’ve won 13 of their last 14 games.
What an absolutely fun weekend of Dodgers baseball. Two comeback wins, and a sweep of the Cincinnati Reds. This team continues to show no quit when down late in the game.
Both comebacks were spurred on by shortstop Corey Seager, who with a walkoff double Saturday night, recorded his first ever walkoff hit at any level. For a player as talented as he, that seems highly improbable. But, baseball. Seager then proceeded to smash the go-ahead runs in with his first ever grand slam in the eighth-inning. That also was his first grand slam in the major leagues. Again, surprising.
In last Friday’s column, I talked about the unpredictability of baseball. This series with the Chicago Cubs was no different. It made me think of the intro to ESPN’s 30 for 30: “What if I told you the Dodgers would host the Cubs for three games, and the only pitcher Chicago would score runs off of would be Clayton Kershaw?”