The Dodgers playing the Cubs are not the same Dodgers that played the Nationals. It’s not only this air of confidence that seems to have overtaken the clubhouse, but also their style of play. The Dodgers didn’t earn this 2-1 lead over the Cubs playing the same game they had all year.
Dodgers Regular Season Leaders in Stolen Bases:
- Howie Kendrick: 10
- Joc Pederson: 6
- Yasiel Puig: 5
- Trayce Thomspon: 5
- Justin Turner: 4
The Dodgers have stolen at least one base in each game of the NLCS. Not to mention three last night, which helped power the boys in blue to a 6-0 victory over the “Best Team In Baseball”. During the NLDS, the only Dodgers’ stolen base was credited to old man Utley. Currently, the Dodgers lead the field of postseason teams left in steals.
Over the course of the past two regular seasons, the Dodgers have been a bottom-five team in stolen bases, and this could be credited to several factors. Health jumps out the most, as the 2016 Dodgers set the NL record for most Designated List placements during the course of one season. But now, this team is healthy and they’re FAST. These *new* Dodgers are full of youth & hustle and they’re finally putting the pieces together at the most crucial time.
Speed has not been the only story though. The Dodgers have managed to hit at least one home run in each game of the postseason so far. Adrian Gonzalez’s lone home run in Game 2 was the only run scored by either team. Yasmani Grandal came through in a big way and broke out of his slump with a brilliant 2-run shot that expanded last night’s lead.
The bats are clicking, the bases are filling, but that’s not going to win the series. The team needs to make sure they keep working pitch counts and getting on-base. It was refreshing watching Corey Seager go 3 for 4 last night even if each hit was a single. This, along with lights-out pitching that’s backed by the defense, have to continue for LA’s postseason hopes to persist.
The @Dodgers are the pluckiest, scrappiest quarter-billion dollar team of all time.
— Rich Eisen (@richeisen) October 19, 2016
The Dodgers have been scratching and clawing their way through the playoffs. With so many rookies like, Corey Seager, Julio Urias and Andrew Toles starting and contributing, you almost forget that this team leads the MLB in total payroll. All hope was gone for the Dodgers around midseason when Kershaw got shut down, but thankfully, they turned it around. Dave Roberts has done a tremendous job with the what he’s had to work with, and deserves all the credit in the world.