The Dodgers are on the brink of reaching the big break of the season known as the All-Star break, but to some of us here at Dodgers Nation, this could be one of the most challenging stretches of the season right now.
The Dodgers are coming off a 7 game road trip where they lost 2 of 3 to the Diamondbacks and then split a series in Colorado. They have another home series with the Diamondbacks and Padres before they all disband and take their All-Star breaks. When they come back from the break, they head to Boston for rematch against the Red Sox.
First, let’s talk about dealing with the “Coors Field Hangover” as Joc Pederson told Bill Plunkett of the OC Register. We already have talked about what’s wrong with Coors Field, but Plunkett dives into the actual numbers behind the series after the series at Coors since 2013:
- Dodgers are 34-29 at Coors Field (.587)
- Series After: Dodgers are 24-35 (.407)
- The entire NL West has a .466 winning percentage in the series after visiting Colorado
There were some complaints about soft beds, which was one of the reasons Ross Stripling gave last year for his lower back injury after the all-star break.
With this in mind, the Dodgers open up a 2 game series vs. the Diamondbacks today and then they face a Padres team for 4 games with a motivated Manny Machado who didn’t make the All-Star team. Manny’s hit 10 home runs in the past 15 games and you know he wants to let his bitterness out on everyone, especially the first place team in the division.
So, with the hopes of not stumbling into the all-star break, there is the All-Star festivities to worry about. Aside from Clayton Kershaw who has been there before, this is going to be the first All-Star game for Cody Bellinger, Walker Buehler and Hyun-Jin Ryu.
This is going to be more than just the game with the amount of media at the event. Ryu would probably laugh at the what we call “a lot” of media attention considering his superstar status in South Korea, but both Cody and Walker Buehler could be a little wide-eyed and go with the flow of multiple interviews and shaking hands with corporate big wigs all over Cleveland.
The game is the least of my concern with Dave Roberts at the helm to make sure his top players don’t over-extend themselves. There’s just a worry that with Walker starting to find his groove and Cody having elevated himself into superstar status, that the effects of getting outside of their routines can have a negative effect after the all-star break, which leads us to the next part of this journey.
The trip to Boston to visit their 2018 World Series opponents in Fenway Park.
Boston leads the overall regular season series 8-7 with the Dodgers. Of the 6 games played in Boston, the Dodgers have only one one game 14-5 on June 12, 2004.
Boston has been dealing with a World Series hangover this season and also dealing with a depleted bullpen compared to last year’s staff that included Craig Kimbrel and Joe Kelly.
Playing the Dodgers would definitely kick-start their second half to challenge the Yankees and Astros, so the motivation is there along with the record for the Dodgers to make this a big concern for fans.
Coors Field Hangover
2 vs. DBacks
4 vs. Motivated Machado
3 at Boston
How many games do you think the Dodgers Win in this 9 game stretch?
— Dodgers Nation (@DodgersNation) July 2, 2019
If there was any time this season fans wanted to see what this Dodgers team was made out of, this would be that time. If the Dodgers can come away this week winning 4 out of 6 against the division rivals and ideally 1 out of 3 in Boston, I would call that a success.
What are your thoughts and concerns for this stretch?