There’s been a lot of chatter the last few days about the Dodgers‘ decision to start Hyun-Jin Ryu in Game 1 of the 2018 NLDS over Clayton Kershaw. So far, that decision has worked out. The Dodgers dominated the Atlanta Braves, 6-0, taking a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five series.
The good news is that the Dodgers still control their postseason destiny, at least in terms of a Wild Card appearance. And the other-semi-good news is that the Rockies are hosting a Nationals club this weekend who have won three straight games, unlike another NL East club who laid down for four straight this week in Denver. But the bad news is the Dodgers could find themselves in a one-game playoff at the beginning of next week or even staying home altogether should they not take care of business this weekend in San Francisco.
The Dodgers have to feel pretty good heading into their final regular season series at home. They will be facing the San Diego Padres, against whom they’ve won 12 of the 16 contests they’ve played so far this season.
We’ve been talking about it a lot lately, and it seems to gain momentum in the critical games, especially when they’re played in the thin air of Coors Field. Whomever is writing out the lineup card for the Dodgers is sticking to their guns, though, despite the club failing to deliver at times when they need to win the most.
Considering all the obstacles the Dodgers have faced over the course of the 2018 season, starting pitching has not been one of them. Sure, there have been quite a few injuries, but each hurdle prompted somebody new to step into the group and perform admirably. Heck, even young righty Brock Stewart deserves some kudos for the hundreds of thousands of frequent-flyer miles he racked up before the All-Star break.
I’m not a big fan of writing about lineup design, particularly when it comes to the Dodgers and the complex tactics they use putting together the daily batting orders. At first glance, the lineups sometimes look carefully thought-out and well constructed, while other times the order looks like it will have absolutely no success at all. Additionally, fans often see a player who is scorching hot at the plate given an unwarranted day off, resulting in frustrating reactions, especially when the team is not winning.
Since the 2018 Dodgers season has not exactly been a lot of fun, and Los Angeles is currently in the middle of a very nerve wracking race for the NL West, I thought we could take a look at the month of September and make some fun, bold, sure-to-(not) come true predictions.
I hesitate to even pose this question, because with the way the season is going for the Dodgers, it will inevitably come back to bite me in the behind. But could we have just seen the weekend when the team finally turned things around?