After a Giants win this afternoon — another Giants win — the Dodgers sit a full 3 games back of the division lead in the NL West. Just a week ago, LA had finally caught up to San Francisco at the top, entering an all-important series in the bay area tied at 85-49. Then they seemingly took their foot off the gas.
Dave Roberts didn’t lineup the best 3 starters LA has against the Giants. They lost the series 2-1. Then heading to St. Louis, Dave Roberts didn’t send out his best lineup for all 4 games while chasing the Giants by two in the loss column.
They split the series 2-2.
Dodger players have said it and felt it — there seems to be no sense of urgency at times. Max Muncy called the offense “inconsistent” adding that the talented LA roster is “just not putting it together.”
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There’s a spark missing on this team but the manager and brass at the top seem to have a certain bravado and a feeling that everything will just regress to the norm and that the Dodgers will once again reign supreme in the NL West.
One Dodger insider, Bill Plunkett of the OC Register agreed with the idea that it’s an arrogance the team is showing right now and really, this shouldn’t be a time for arrogance.
“I think there is some arrogance about the decisions they’ve made. They could have set it up so Urias, Buehler and Scherzer could have pitched against the Giants but they prioritized ‘rest’ … but they’ve made a lot of decisions based on long term with the assumption that they’re going to be playing deep into October … I do think they’re not as afraid of the one game Wild Card.”
The assumption that they’re going to be playing deep into October… Gives off real 2019 NLDS vibes, if you ask me.
The Dodgers now enter an all-important 3 game series with the San Diego Padres this weekend. San Diego often times has shown that they’re more interested in winning than the Dodgers, at least when they play each other. Another point Plunk agrees with… for both the Padres and Giants teams.
“It felt like the games were more important to them than they were to the Dodgers.”
The last time LA and San Diego matched up, the Dodgers surprisingly swept the series. Surprisingly only because the Dodgers have struggled to do that over the past two seasons as the Padres have gone all in on talent acquisition and, more importantly, energy.
At the moment, this is a Wild Card game preview. And, with the Dodgers sitting 3 games with only 21 games to play and no more head-to-head matchups with the division leading Giants on the schedule, it’s more and more likely this is the matchup we see on October 6th at Dodger Stadium. Unless a minor miracle takes place and the Dodgers pull their heads out of you know where.
Sure, the Dodgers have overcome more dire odds stacked against them. But that 2020 NLCS is getting further and further in the rearview mirror. That team had heart — it had a soul. This team has guys showing up to work and then going home.
Prove me wrong, boys.