Our beloved Dodgers need to look back to July.
It’s difficult to even know where to begin when writing an article on the Dodgers these days. Last Monday, I was flippant. Friday, I was morose and somewhat at a loss for what to say, and now….really, what does one say?
While there’s been very heavy speculation lately about the effectiveness of the Dodgers‘ most common batting orders, there’s little guarantee that moving around several regular pieces will make a huge difference in the overall potency of the offense. The same can be said about moving up right fielder Yasiel Puig in the lineup—he’s definitely thrived in the lower part of the order, but when given the chance to hit in the middle, hasn’t made much of a notable difference at all.
Without question, there’s no one particular area of the team that can take the brunt of the blame for the Dodgers‘ current losing skid. It was only less than a week ago that the starting pitching was borderline horrendous, yet once that particular problem began fixing itself, a major epidemic of ineffectiveness started to lurk over the majority of the bullpen. All this while the offense, which was once shouldering a huge load of the club’s success, has become nearly dormant.
It’s nice to know that when you take a vacation, and don’t have much service, that if you are a Dodgers fan, you can come back to find them exactly in the same position that you left them in — well in command of the NL West, the NL, and all of the majors, for that matter.
During the middle contest of a three-game series against the Padres last weekend, we noted a statistic on Twitter about how the No. 5 hole in the Dodgers lineup has been the least productive of all the spots in the batting order this season, excluding the No. 9 slot.
Last year, the Chicago Cubs won the World Series for the first time in 108 years. Last year, they proved that they were a force to be reckoned with. They were the best team in baseball, but a lot can change in a year. The Cubs are still strong — there is no doubt about that — but ask any baseball fan and they’ll tell you that this year the best team in the bigs is not the World Champion Cubs, but rather the Boys out West. This year, the Los Angeles Dodgers are the best team in baseball. This year, they’ve become one of the best teams in the history of the game.
Although we don’t yet know who the Dodgers will ultimately end up acquiring at the non-waiver trade deadline, it’s seems as though the Justin Verlander talks have cooled down, as it appears that the Los Angeles front office is more interested in acquiring Sonny Gray or Yu Darvish.
It wasn’t too long ago — right when the Dodgers were at the tail-end of one of their notorious, first-half offensive lulls — that we put together our first installment of trade deadline articles, recommending a handful of potential barter candidates who could conceivably help boost the Los Angeles offense down the stretch run of the regular season. Just a short time later, however, Justin Turner returned to the lineup from a hamstring injury, and using a Cody Bellinger bat of all things, ignited the run-producing sleeping giant that every Dodger fan knew existed from the first day of the 2017 campaign.