With the Lakers in the finals, has anyone been paying attention to the Dodgers? They are winning one run games, coming back when trailing late, scoring in the 1st, winning with pitchers that have not won in 3 years!
The Dodgers took 2 of 3 from another division foe Arizona, bringing their ML best record to 37-18. The lead is now 9.5 games over the Giants who are playing .500 ball.
In the playoffs, most games are decided by one or two runs, sometimes one or two pitches. Well the Dodgers are getting great practice in close games, Wednesday they won their 9th one run game of the year 1-0. When you see a Dodger shutout, you can take an educated guess that Billinglsey started the game, winning his 7th of the season. And as Joe Torre says about the one run games, “It's not good for my stomach, but it's good practice.”
Now we know that the Dodgers lead the league in scoring in the 1st inning, but now they have shown they can come from behind by scoring 5 in the bottom of the 8th against the Dback bullpen Tuesday night. Yes, i was guilty of shutting the game off before the 8th! A lot of this can be attributed to Joe Torre's calm demeanor on the bench, you can not tell if they are winning or losing. He never overreacts (well sometimes he pulls the starters too early).
I have said it before, but does it not look like Jonathan Broxton's fastball just explodes in the catcher's mitt? It is not whether the batter is going to get a hit or not, just a matter if he is going to strikeout or make contact. He had it dialed up to 100mph last night.
Recently, even when the Dodgers lose there has been good news, evident Monday night. Hiroki Kuroda came off the DL to pitch effectively, even though he took the loss. Plus they almost tied the game in the ninth, scoring 2, advancing the tying run to 3rd.
The more I watch the Dodgers, the more I ask, who would you pitch around to get to? Putting Furcal and his .244 avg aside, (not like you can pitch around the leadoff man anyway since he bats 2nd) you would not pitch around Loney to get to Blake, Ethier, Martin, you want to face the .310 hitting Bison Kemp? Even know some of the hitters are hitting 2.60 or so, would you be surprised if Martin or Ethier got a big hit?
The Dodgers host the Phillies for 4 beginning tonight. Eric Milton will start against his former team Friday night. Los Angeles rolls into the series at a good time, with everything clicking. We will get a good barometer of how good the Dodgers are.
Of course with the Lakers in the finals this weekend, will anyone be paying attention?
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Written by Jon Bella