My parents went to Ohio on vacation and all I got was this crappy t-shirt!
It's worse than that, actually. The Dodgers went to Cincinnati for the weekend and all I got -- well, all we got -- was a humbling sweep at the hands of the Reds, with losses by scores of 3-2, 4-3 and 3-2, in dramatic walkoff fashion both Saturday and Sunday.
Los Angeles didn't get their asses kicked, as evidenced by the scores, and it's not like they kicked the ball all over the lot -- the Reds made the only two errors of the series -- but they were outplayed by just enough to lose each game. Cincy got the boost it needed for a push toward what they hope is the National League Central division title and the Dodgers got a taste of the type of big game action they'll see come October.
To make too much of the just completed and disappointing series is to defy baseball logic, if there is such a thing. L.A. has lost four straight games, sure, and with Arizona losing two of three in San Francisco over the weekend, they missed a chance to inch closer to an NL West clinching. And the Reds looked more like champions than the boys in Blue.
But not by much, and it's 100% meaningless in the grand scheme of things. In fact, the Dodgers could go hot and cold, cold and hot, and back and forth a couple of times between now and the season-ender on September 29, and just as easily cruise to a World Series triumph like they're swatting flies.
Or they could play .900 ball for three weeks and go three-and-out in the NLDS beginning October 3 at Dodger Stadium. And come the postseason, your heroes for the ages are as likely to be Tim Federowicz, Nick Punto and Michael Young as they are Clayton Kershaw, Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig.
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That's just baseball, and as the great Don Drysdale always said, "If you could put this game in capsule form you'd never be able to spend all the money." Translation: Baseball is mostly unexplainable and completely unpredictable.
Except for this: The Dodgers make no trips farther than Phoenix the rest of the way, they're home this week beginning tonight with a three-game series against Arizona -- the team trying to catch them, and the team they must beat to reduce their magic number from 10 to zero -- followed by four with the last place San Francisco Giants.
Matchups are as follows: Randall Delgado versus Ricky Nolasco tonight at 7:10 p.m., Trevor Cahill vs. Edinson Volquez Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. and Patrick Corbin vs. Hyun-Jin Ryu Wednesday at 7:10 p.m.