Matt Kemp Back On Track?
By Joseph Lopez
After sitting out three consecutive games, Dodgers’ OF Matt Kemp, came back and immediately showed why he’s considered a candidate for a 30/30 season. In yesterday’s win over the Giants, which completed the series sweep, Kemp went 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs. That’s definitely encouraging for the Dodgers, who seen their talented OF hit just .230/.286/.380 in the month of June.
For the season, Kemp is currently hitting .267/.326/.469 with 13 home runs and 43 RBIs. While Kemp is no batting champ, he’s great talent to have on the field. After Wednesday’s performance, the Dodgers can hope for a better performance out of Kemp in July.
With the sweep, the Dodgers are now in second-place. The San Diego Padres still lead the division by three games, but the Dodgers are quickly closing the gap. The Padres are first-place largely due to their stellar pitching, which ranks first in the entire league. The Padres own a team ERA of 3.10 (1st). However, the Padres lack a compelling offense, as they rank 26th in average (.246), 24th in home runs (58) and 21st in runs batted in (316).
In comparison, the Dodgers are the exact opposite of the Padres. The Dodgers have a very good offense, but just so-so pitching. The Dodgers rank 15th in team ERA (4.06), but their offensive numbers rank near the top of the league. On the year, the Dodgers have scored 367 runs (Padres have scored 329), and have a supporting cast that take a lot of the pressure off the rotation and bullpen. The Dodgers should be able to get past the Padres, especially if Kemp starts producing on offense like he did earlier this season.