The Los Angeles Dodgers haven’t had the smoothest transitions from the All-Star break to the second half of the season. Clayton Kershaw’s recovery took a turn for the worst, and as it has been with most of the season, injuries have taken quite the toll on the team. Trayce Thompson landed on the DL as did Hyun-Jin Ryu and the Dodgers dropped two of three to NL West cellar dwellers the Arizona Diamondbacks. Thankfully they bounced back and put on a strong performance against Washington Nationals, winning 8-4 on Tuesday.
.@scottkazmir19's pitching line:
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) July 20, 2016
In better news, the San Francisco Giants have come out of the gate even worse as they have dropped four straight games and as a result, the gap between the Dodgers and Giants has been reduced to 4.5 games. The Dodgers are still in control of the Wild Card race but would obviously prefer to catch that team from up north and capture their 4th straight NL West title. The trade deadline is quickly coming up and the stretch run towards the playoff is about to kick into high gear, so in other words, the season is about to get really fun.
Before all that really gets going though, its time for another weekly power rankings round-up from around the web.
ESPN Power Ranking: Dodgers ranking No. 8 (Last Week No. 8)
Reasons: This ranking came out before the devastating news about Kershaw and had they been privy to this information they may have been slightly lower in the rankings. They mentioned the Dodgers interest in young Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Chris Archer whom Dodgers President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman has an established relationship with.
The San Francisco Giants remain in the top spot.
Bleacher Report Power Ranking: Dodgers ranking No. 9 (Last Week No. 7)
Reasons: Thankfully for the Dodgers, Brandon McCarthy has been stellar since returning from the DL, going 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA. In addition to this, some bats that the team has been waiting on all season in Adrian Gonzalez, Howie Kendrick and others are finally starting to come alive. If the bats can carry the team until the return of Kershaw or until a big deadline move is made, the Dodgers will be in good shape
The Cleveland Indians take the top spot on B/R
Sports Illustrated Power Ranking: Dodgers ranking No. 9 (Last Week No. 9)
Reasons: No reasons given.
The Washington Nationals are No. 1 on SI
CBS Sports Power Ranking: Dodgers ranking No. 11 (Last week no. 9)
Reasons: CBS makes the very astute point that the pitching staff on the Dodgers DL, Clayton Kershaw/Brett Anderson/Alex Wood/Hyun-Jin Ryu, looks much stronger than the one that the team currently fields. Look for this to change though as the team gets healthier and the trade deadline comes and goes.
The Nationals are No. 1 here as well
Dodgers Average Power Ranking: 9.25
The Dodgers have been around the top 10 pretty consistently this whole season and it doesn’t look like this will be changing any time soon.
The Dodgers continue their series with the Nationals on Wednesday with Bud Norris going against Gio Gonzalez with first pitch set for 4:05 PM PST at Nationals Park