The Dodgers opened the second half of the season with a 56-35 record and just 2 games behind the San Francisco Giants for first place in the powerhouse National League west. The San Diego Padres sat 4 games behind LA.
Each team won on Friday night, as has been the case often over the last few weeks. But for the Dodgers, the focus is on controlling what they can control. Catcher Will Smith echoed that sentiment last night after LA’s 10-4 win over the Rockies.
“Right now, it’s win the division. It’s going to be a close, tight race I feel like for the rest of the year. There’s a couple other good teams in our division that we’re going to have to compete with. It’s just going to take each and every game showing up, doing what we do and winning a bunch of ballgames.”
For the Dodgers, the real focus is probably a little ahead on the calendar, even if the players tell you otherwise. Starting Monday, the Dodgers and Giants will go head to head 7 times in 11 days. The division leading Giants first visit Dodger Stadium for four starting Monday. The hope for Dave Roberts and the boys in blue is that they’ll be getting a few more weapons back.
Barring a setback, right-hander Jimmy Nelson is set to return to the bullpen in that series. There’s also the possibility of getting shortstop Corey Seager back for the first time in more than two months. On top of that, left-hander reliever Victor Gonzalez — who tossed a scoreless inning of relief with Single-A Rancho on Friday — may also rejoin the team during this homestand.