Just 2 weeks ago, when the Dodgers sat in last place, 9.5 games out, I, amidst all frustration amongst many of you other Dodger fans, still felt that in spite of the teams poor play they still had a chance to make a run. It also helped that the rest of the NL West hasn’t exactly had anyone to step up and lay claime to the division either. And if you would have asked me if I would have been satisfied if the Dodgers had closed the gap in the NL West to say, 5 games by the All-Star break, I would have been happy. Yet here we are, at 47-47 and while hardly an imposing record, considering how many different lineups The Blue has used in the first half and the fact that we we’re as much as 12 games under .500, at 47-47 and only 2.5 games behind the DiamondBacks, i’d say that we are in a great position for a 2nd half run. One of the reasons for the recent surge of course has been the play of rookie sensation Yasiel Puig. Puig, since being called up on June 3, has hit .391 with 8 home runs and 19 rbi’s ( It seems like more than 19 doesn’t it ? ) . His all around play has been a huge lift for the Boys in Blue as witnissed by this catch and throw in his first big league game….
Would it have been nice if Puig made the all-star game. Yes. I, like many of you did my part and voted as much as I could to send The Cuban Missile to the all-star game, but hey, at the same time, I can understand also why there are those out there who feel that one month of MLB experience is not enought to justify an all-star appearance. Yasiel will be around for a while and as long as he keeps his focus he will have many all-star game appearances ahead of him and he will do more than quiet the haters, yup, that’s right, the haters, you know, Jonathan Papelbon, Bruce Bochy and Mike Scioscia…..
If the Dodgers Are to Win the NL West….
The fact that the Dodgers pretty much have the bulk of their team back is reason to believe that they can and will win the NL West. The starting pitching, anchored by all-star Clayton Kershaw, is finally starting to come together as well as the bullpen, who had been under much scrutiny through much of the 1st half, particularly Brandon League. The offense, though it hit another rough spot this weekend against the Rockies ( I guess the all-star game did come at the right time… ), even with the big numbers it has posted during the recent surge, the key, and you all can call me crazy if you want, is going to be whether Matt Kemp can regain his form that nearly won him MVP in 2011. Hey, a few weeks ago I said that Andre Ethier would not be likely to be traded when everyone all but wanted him out of town and yet all the Ethier trade talks have quited down. Of course it’s helped that of all the outfielders, Dre has spent the least amount of time off the field and has also proved his ability to play all 3 outfield positions. Plus he’s also been swinging a hot bat lately as well…. Is Matt Kemp injury prone ? I really hope not. But if the offense is to continue it’s serge in the 2nd half, The Bison is going to be the key, especially if teams continue to pitch around HanRam as Colorado did recently. On that note, Dre here says that 91 wins claims the NL West. So if that’s the case, The Blue would have to go 44-24 in the 2nd half. Very achievable….
All Star Game Should NOT Determine Home Field
Every year this comes up. Should the All-Star game determine which league get’s home field advantage for the World Series. I’ll say it again…. NO !!! Do all-star game’s in other sports determine home court advantage for the Finals ? NO !!! Good example, the 2011 World Series. The St. Louis Cardinals use a late season surge to claim the NL Wild Card spot, carry that momentum into the playoffs, and as they stand 1 strike away from a Texas Rangers WS victory, dramatically rally and win it all. Now, had the Rangers, who had the better overall record, been home for Game 6 as home field advantage would have dictated, would the rally happen ? I doubt it. But hey, just my opinion.
Enjoy the All-Star game everyone !!! Looking forward to the 2nd half… GO DODGERS !!!!