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Dodgers: Los Angeles Tops Early NL Power Rankings

Dodgers
GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 27: Corey Seager #5 of the Los Angeles Dodgers signs autographs before a spring training game against the Colorado Rockies at Camelback Ranch on February 27, 2017 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)

Any casual fan of baseball knows that making it to the World Series is a huge accomplishment. It’s even more difficult to do so in back to back years. Unfortunately for Dodgers fans, they’ve tasted both the joy and agony that can accompany a World Series berth. And yet, here we are again. Pitchers and catchers have just now started showing up to stretch out for Spring Training, and power rankings are rolling in.

With six straight division titles in their rearview mirror, the Dodgers are once again at the top. Los Angeles ranked third in last year’s preseason power rankings, just behind the Yankees and Astros. Both of those teams fell to the Red Sox, originally ranked 7th ahead of the season.

 

Alone in the NL

Los Angeles ranks third in preseason power rankings, sandwiched by three American League teams. And that would make sense given that the PECOTA projections have the Red Sox and Yankees combining for 185 wins in 2019. Those two teams actually ended up winning 208 games combined in 2018, if you cared.

[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/former-gm-jim-bowden-feels-the-dodgers-are-missing-a-bat-still-need-bryce-harper/2019/02/13/” type=”big” color=”red”] JIM BOWDEN FEELS THE DODGERS ARE MISSING A BAT, STILL NEED BRYCE HARPER[/button]

Those same projections have Los Angeles winning 93 games and their seventh straight title in the West. Not only that, they’re projected to run away with the division. Baseball Prospectus has the Rockies in second at nine games behind Los Angeles when the season wraps up.

Realistic Outlook

The Dodgers did not get JT Realmuto. They have yet to land Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer, Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, or any other remaining big name on the market. What they did get was get AJ Pollock as their everyday center fielder and Joe Kelly to shore up the bullpen. Most notably though, they are getting back Corey Seager. The downside to all of that is that they lost Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp, and Alex Wood in the process.

Those three guys who accounted for a combined 4.8 WAR in 2018. Pollock and Kelly combined for a +3 WAR last season, but Pollock has shown he can be a +7 guy. We’ll have to wait and see how that turns out.

Fans may feel like Los Angeles’ front office didn’t do much in the way of improving their team, but that has not been the case. Sure, they did not(at least yet) sign the superstars. But they did shed some salary, add young talent into the farm system, and give their team a chance to win a World Series.

The projections speak for themselves: The Dodgers are coming for a title.

[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/dodgers-spring-training-clayton-kershaw-throws-first-bullpen-session-of-2019/2019/02/12/” type=”big” color=”red”] CLAYTON KERSHAW THROWS FIRST BULLPEN SESSION OF 2019[/button]

Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

22 Comments

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  1. Yeah we are coming for another title with the same results because we won’t go out and get that player that will put us over the hump to finally win one.

    Yes they have provided players on the trading deadline but we need to have them before a season begins so there can be an adjustment period. Especially if they come from the American League.

    Pollock is a great addition but his injury history is concerning but just one more bat.

    Harper or Machado. I prefer Machado due to he is a rh bat plus he is insurance for Seager.

    Plus as Turner ages and moves over to 1b we can slide Seager or Machado there and Lux should be ready.

    Just my thought. We are the Los Angeles Dodger not the Los Angeles Rays

      • I would be fine with bringing Machado back as well and MAINLY because he is a RHB. But for anyone to say this team is on par with the teams of 2017 and 2018 is just wrong in their assessments. On the page where Roberts ‘doesn’t see any weaknesses’ on this year’s team THERE IS NOT 1 FAN who comes close to agreeing with him.

  2. The longest running infield (late 50s to early 60s) won 1 ws title in 9 years, making it to 4 ws berths. Go tell them they weren’t successful, and then once you ice down that swollen lip and black eye, come tell me that having Seager, bellinger, Ruiz, lux, verdugo, and Smith for 9 years together projected cant at least repeat that success, when they get here in these next 2 years. Now tell me why Harper and or Machado is worth sacrificing keeping that core together.

    • By getting “free agents” you do not need to sacrifice the young core. I’m with Blues … the Dodgers have enough money to get both Harper and Machado. The Dodgers, according to Forbes, made $522 million last year! Go get them!!!!!

      • Concur, Since 1958. And why Freidman is acting like a small market GM is beyond me. And if Kasten is telling the truth, the CBT will not hinder the team from signing those players that could give Dodgers a legit chance at a WS again.

    • You said it right 50 and 60. Old school ways are dead. Now you have data ways to predict with less hit and miss.

      So far mixed results good talented players that have choked or inconsistent. Joc was once considered top now he can’t mash lefty pitching on consistent basis.

      Will Seager be able to handle short with the injuries that he is having now at such a young age

      Can Bellinger lay off the junk without looking stupid in crucial situations

      The rest are prospects who can go north or south. So they need to bridge the gap. Not go cheap.

      You want cheap you do have the Rays A’s Pirates Twins Indians Marlins to pick

      A Machado or Harper balances the lineup while the weight falls on the proven players not on the unproven

      Cloud they be yes but they are not there because you got to build there confidence and by surrounding them with proven talent so they can finally grow

      I am not saying buy all the top free agents but buy the right free agents as needed not every year but if you spend it on the right ones you tweak with the youth. I am just tired of risk FA when you just could of gotten theproven one.

  3. Basically, everyone on the roster except Muncy needs to exceed last year’s offensive output for this team to dominate.

  4. Here is a food for thought. What if Seager gets hurt or tires due to loss of time of injury reconditioning the body back into shape after his injuries and time off ain’t easy.

    Who steps up ?

    Kike & Taylor

    imo are not good options as everyday player but they are awesome as off the bench players that will produce

    Big Red getting up in years but produces but eventually to keep him healthy will need to move to 1b

    What if Muncy regresses because they figured him out a little it happens to all players as other teams build a book on you. Aka Taylor. It’s all about adjusting

    So Machado fits the bill and being rh.

    Harper is a stud would never say no to him. But our organization is strong in the OF positions

    But if we sign him no complaints but need an infielder regardless.

    I understand that we could afford both Harper and Machado. But thier is a tax issue. But

    If we stop signing reclamation players with risk which can be feast or famine isn’t good but that isn’t the case this year you have 2 studs out there and for sure 1 wants to be a Dodger

  5. I agree with Jim Bowden and the gents who chimed in already, we’re selling ourselves short, we lost a lot in Puig & Kemp, we really needed Realmuto badly!! We’re short a huge bat, need to hit more consistently (stop striking out) that get’s nothing, maybe at least a ground ball might move a runner up. To many ??’s still remain, I like what Muncy did last season, can he repeat, Bellinger great rookie ball, lost some in W.S in 17 and 18 in general, will Seager bounce back, he is our franchise guy, kiki, wants to play everyday,?? hit 220 come on! I like Taylor, he slumped off some last season, we still need a great run producer, not big on Harper we can get more for less, but get someone stop putting pieces together like management did in Tampa Bay. I don’t think were that good to expect to roll through the season and get that World Series that L.A. is dying for, yeah, I got those 88 blues too….

  6. Worst case scenario Pollock and Seager go down then what. A whole lost season. Be smart don’t take chances on nonesense. You have 2 players that are game changer and possible HOF pick one that fits your roster period. Stop the cheapness us fan deserve it. Loyal fans 1988 has been a long time.

  7. So we are in the top 5 of power rankings!!!! Frankly, its February, so what does it matter? These rankings are as silly as Bowden’s comments, and as spurious as AF telling the world we are literally on the edge of a baseball dynasty. How well we do will be decided between the white lines!!!! As I look at it, we still need another RH bat, and, frankly, a catcher who can hit : our 1-7 players are fine and that is where our lineup ends. That means the 8-9 are no offensive threat to anyone. Our lineup for 2018 was an extended lineup 1-8; 2019 will show an abbreviated lineup. Like most of you, if I could get Machado (a RHB), I would, but with a contract so loaded with fines for non-hustle, he might wish to play somewhere else. If Harper wants to go short-term, sign him. The team spends money like a recession is on its way. If not now, than when? Go Blue!!

    • Good morning Azul and Pr Jr.!!!! I did read that page and I am wondering if we (Dodger supporters) and AF are looking at the same squad. Friedman sees a pot of gold, and we see a team that needs some work on it. He sees us going to the WS, and we see a team that will not go far in post season play. I had better get my eyes checked!!!! Go Blue!!!

  8. Power rankings to me mean nothing if they were accurate we would have won 2 to 3 World Series by now.

    So what does the power rankings mean now.

    Nothing and are useless. All they say is we are a top tier team which isn’t the argument. We just don’t have enough to finish the job.

    But we are in an era of not just good teams. We are in an era of super teams.

    2017 was our year but the Astros coach, out coached Roberts and it was obvious we were the better team.

    Boston Red Sox just schooled us 2018. Roberts again looked lost as well as our streaky players who went polar ice cold.

    All I am saying is don’t freaking cheat us and look at us and tell us that the seats are full so we are doing fine. Because we made the classics and AF likes what he has.

    I like what we have too but there are available players that can make us into a dynasty and I am not talking players that are old that come with risk. Legit players that can be a nightmare for opposing pitchers.

    There will always risk in baseball wether your young or old but percentages says differently on younger guys

    Also the core is good but if you haven’t check the core belongs to Bora$$

    So what are the chances we keep them together. Be realist. No freaking way the time to strike is now because the core will leave later for Green Backs

    Everyone remembers who won it not who lost it.

    Unless your the Astro’s 1 st WS trophy

    I am just keeping it real. Now if AF & Kasten are being mandated by the Investor then say so. I am not an idiot fan this is about money and more money in there pockets.

    Then all Dodger fans should let them know this will not be tolerated and stop buying what they are selling. I have. Love my Dodgers and the management of how they built the farm but disagree how they are approaching this team that is almost there to become a dynasty in an age of you ain’t keeping the core together those days are gone.

  9. We got to the world series, back to back years……..reading these comments you would think we were down in a freefall with the Giants. 28 other major league markets would love to have been where we have been…….it could be a lot worse.

    • Yes it could be a lot worse, but when your that close you must do what ever is necessary to complete the task. Most feel we’ve taken a step backward and I would agree, still need a major bat especially a right handed hitter who get’s on base an has power!!

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