The purpose of this article is to dissect the 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers current losing streak. It is not to place blame. The Dodgers are a great team and all great teams go through slumps.
Starting Pitching Giving Up Runs Early in Games, the Bullpen Giving Up Runs Late, While the Dodgers Offense Has Struggled to Score Runs Late
Since Saturday, August 26, Dodgers pitchers (including the bullpen) have given up five runs one time, six runs four times, seven runs two times, nine runs once, and thirteen runs once.
On the other hand, the Dodgers offense has scored one run or less six times and two runs or less two times. Conversely, the Dodgers still lead the league in comeback wins and have the best run differential showing how good they can be, but how much they have struggled during this current streak.
What hurts the Dodgers most is that their 1-14 record since August 26 has seen the team play six games against the second place Diamondbacks, four games against the third place and second Wild Card team Rockies, plus four games against the fourth place San Diego Padres. The inter-division games hurt more because they are direct hits to the cushion between first and second place.
Moreover, the Dodgers starting pitching staff has given up bunches of runs all early in games. Specifically, twenty-seven runs in the first three innings of games since August 26. The bullpen has given up twenty-seven runs in the last three innings of games since August 26 as well. In that same thought, the Dodgers offense has been searching for its come from behind determination that fans saw until the end of August.
The early runs place the team in a hole, while the late runs stave of motivation, and the offense being in slump prevents come from behind wins. The mixture together has seen the Dodgers win one game and lose fourteen since the end of August. Things will change.
The Dodgers Are Not This Bad and the Opposition is Not That Good
During the Dodgers winning streak playing historically good and record-breaking baseball, the line was “The Dodgers are not this good, and the opposition is not that bad.” As with anything in life, things take a turn. Ballplayers and teams go through slumps, streaks, and weeks of uncharacteristic play.
This time, as of Sunday morning, September 10, 2017, during the Dodgers current nine game losing streak, it is one of those times. The fans have to wait it out and the team has to work it out.
Better that this working out happens now and not just prior or during the postseason and the great thing for the Dodgers is that they played so well previously that they still have a ten game lead over the Arizona Diamondbacks for the National League West Division lead. The Dodgers also still have best record in baseball. Not that the Dodgers should rest on their laurels, but sometimes your previous successes help carry you when life puts in you in a slump.