Los Angeles Dodgers: Is 2017 deja vu or the breakthrough?
The Los Angeles Dodgers have been here before. To be honest, they’ve been here a few times. It’s not foreign to say the Dodgers are the team to beat but it’s another story for the Dodgers to actually believe that. Currently, the Dodgers are the talk of MLB after their trade for Yu Darvish with the Texas Rangers. With 79 wins, the Dodgers are eight games ahead of the Houston Astros for best record in baseball. But haven’t we been here before?
Baseball is a marathon, not a sprint and this is what the Dodgers must try to remember.
It started in 2013 when the Dodgers went on to finish first in the NL West with 92 wins, then another three straight division titles and no less than 91 wins each season. However, come playoff time, the Dodgers failed to reach their goal. It’s not so much the losing that has Dodgers fans feeling like deja vu but it’s also what the team has paid for the losses. Back when the New York Yankees were winning World Series titles, they were also paying big-time for the bats and arms, leaving them atop the MLB in payroll. The Dodgers are currently in that same situations again but without the rings to ease some of the pain.
But 2017 is looked upon as different.
The pitching may be better and the bats, are not only huge, they’re timely. However, what’s done up until the end of the season has been seen before. It’s what matters in October that counts. If the season were to end today the teams that will likely make it in will be the Washington Nationals, Colorado Rockies, Chicago Cubs, and Arizona Diamondbacks. Good news for the Dodgers is that are a combined 18-13 against those team but that means nothing when playoffs roll around.
It’s just something in the air when watching this team play that makes you want to believe everything is different. Maybe it’s the pitching of Clayton Kershaw, Alex Wood and now you add in Darvish and that’s three pitchers to lead off a series no team wishes to face. Their combined record on the season is 35-12 with nine of those losses coming from Darvish. But the bats are also leading the parade with eight players with 10+ home runs and six players with 30+ RBI.
What’s not to like about this team? They can do it all but so has the past four Dodgers squads. It’s only August and it’s still plenty of baseball left but only time will tell. Hell, if the Cubs can pull it off, why not the Dodgers in 2017?