The Los Angeles Dodgers Can Thank Diamonds in The Rough For Their Success
The Los Angeles Dodgers are 33-20 in 2017 and they reached the NLCS in 2016. They’re my pick to be the 2017 World Series champs because they have pitching depth and a good mixture of youngsters and veterans in their lineup. The Dodgers are getting contributions from a lot of different players their depth chart.
Chris Hatcher, a former 5th round pick of the Marlins, is having one of his best seasons as a pro. He currently holds a 3.54 ERA and leads the LA bullpen in innings pitched. Starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy played for five different teams before joining LA in 2015 and is currently second on the team in innings pitched and holds a 3.28 ERA.
Josh Fields had a 6.89 ERA with Houston in 2016, but then he notched a 2.79 ERA with LA. This year he owns a 0.84 ERA and he’s been one of the more reliable relievers this season. Pedro Baez is a late bloomer in the MLB. His big league debut came in 2014 at the age of 26. He’s only walked 50 batters in 171.1 career innings. Baez has given up only 20 long balls during that span, too.
Luis Avilan is currently on the 10-day disabled list, but he’s been a mainstay in the Dodgers pen for a few years now. Avilan put up a 3.20 ERA last season and a 3.00 ERA before landing on the DL this year. After arriving in LA in 2015, the right-hander’s ERA ballooned to 5.17 and it didn’t look like he would last long in Hollywood. Avilan hasn’t surrendered a homer in two seasons and in his last 34.2 innings he’s only given up 12 earned runs.
Chris Taylor hit .240 in Seattle and hit only .207 after joining LA last year. So far in 2017, Tayor has a .319 batting average, six homers and 19 RBI in 36 games. Justin Turner is now on the disabled list, but he’s left a huge impact on the Dodgers season. Turner had only eight homers before joining LA in 2014. He’s smashed 51 dingers in four seasons as a member of the blue and white and he is currently hitting .379. He never hit better than .280 before dawning the Dodger blue cap. Since becoming a part of the Dodgers franchise, Turner has hit .294 or better in two of the past three seasons.
The Dodgers have been done an excellent job finding guys that can step in and help win ball games. They’ve created a team that doesn’t rely solely on one person and there’s also a handful of players that have 10 RBI or more. Meaning manager Dave Roberts is comfortable mixing and matching throughout the course of a season as he doesn’t want his guys to run out of gas before playoff time. LA his a team that can win the Fall Classic in 2017 and all they did was continue to draft and develop players as they shopped for players around “The Show” that might possess the spark that could unleash a champion…the type of champion LA hasn’t seen in nearly 30 years.