The Dodgers just completed a five-game road trip through two AL ballparks, and about the only good thing I can say about it is, at least it wasn’t SIX games long.
They began this eight-game trip with a three-game lead over the San Francisco Giants, and as the sun rapidly sets on their first place reign, that lead has dwindled down to a tenuous single game. The Dodgers have now lost five in a row – their first five-game losing streak of the season – at just about the worst time possible.
One of the most maddening factors in this losing streak is for the most part, the starting pitchers have held up their end of the bargain. However, the other three wheels on the cart (offense, bullpen, manager) all fell off, running the Dodgers right off the cliff.
One would think a trip through American League ballparks would do the Boys in Blue some good. It would seem having a DH would give the Dodgers one more bullet to fire at their opponents – but not this team, at this time, with these players. As the road trip wore on, the offense simply got worse with each game. At one point, the Dodger bats went 13 1/3 hitless innings in a row against the Astros.
In the first game of the road trip, against the Oakland A’s, Alex Guerrero got the nod to be the Dodgers’ DH. He went 0 for 3, with two strike outs. Andre Ethier pinch-hit for Guerrero in the 8th and singled, later scoring a run.
The Dodgers then went on to try their DH luck against the Houston Astros. In the first game, when the Dodgers were no-hit by “Ol’ Bad Lighting In My Mitt” Mike Fiers, Alex Guerrero went from an 0 for 3 DH to an 0 for 5 DH. Carl Crawford joined in the shenanigans in the 7th inning, where he batted for the hapless Guerrero, promptly grounding out.
In the final game against the Astros, Carl Crawford was DH. He went 0 for 4.
Over the five games against AL clubs, the Dodgers DH corps went 1 for 19, with nine strikeouts. Andre Ethier got the only hit and scored the only run for the group.
This is not exactly the way to establish first place bragging rights, nor will it convince the American League that should the Dodgers make it to the Fall Classic, they can thrive and beat them at their own game in their own parks.
Don’t even get me started on the bullpen.