Opinion of Kingman's Performance

Saturday, September 29, 2012

They're Playing Great Now, Probably Too Late

The Dodger offense has emerged.  With 5 games left in this 162 game marathon they are putting runs up on the scoreboard at the rate all hoped for when the August trade with Boston went down.  Unfortunately, barring a miracle collapse by St. Louis, it looks like this surge is too late.

Sahne Victorino is congratulated by his manager Don Mattingly after homering in the second inning of last night's action )photo by Howard How/Getty Images)

For the third game in a row, the Dodgers scored 8 runs.  This time it was Shane Victorino that sparked a four run second inning rally with a 3-run shot into the Left Field Pavilion.  Victorino is playing his last five games as a Dodger now.  Look for him to attempt to latch on with a club that is willing to pay him for 3-4 years and is in search of a speedy leadoff man.  Shane wants a final contract in his career to make him comfortable for the rest of his life.

Clayton Kershaw showed the National League last night that he should be in the Cy Young Award race.  Leading the league in E.R.A., WHIP, and one strikeout behind in the strikeouts race, Kershaw, with some decent run support would be on the verge of a 20 win season.  His grit and determination have him pitching through hip pain and well at that.  Yes, the Rockies had a depleted lineup, but good pitchers take advantage of situation like that.   I contend that we might have seen Kershaw’s last start of the season.  By the time his turn comes around again, the Cardinals probably will have clinched the last playoff spot.

Clayton Kersahw hustles down the line showing no ill effects of his sore hip. (photo by Howard How/Getty Images)

You would think that the final 5 games that the Cardinals have against post season 
qualifiers (Washington and Cincinnati) would be competitive.  Those teams have home field advantage in play.  Unfortunately, MLB botched the playoff schedule and has the lower seed playing the first two playoff games at home.  Many believe that actually to be a disadvantage in a 3 out of 5 series.  As a result, the Nats and Reds, both in a flat-footed tie for the N.L. best record, really don’t have an urgency to gain the top spot.  Evidence of that thinking was seen yesterday when the Nationals pulled their regulars early in yesterdays blow out loss to the Cards.

So due to those factors, as great as the Dodgers have been playing, (winning four of their last five), it looks like they’ll be spectators come October 3rd.  Too bad, because the ball club is coming around.  Too little, too late.  They only have themselves to blame for being in this nearly impossible situation.  Joe Blanton goes to the mound tonight.

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