Dodgers: Slow April Starts Are Nothing New For the Dodgers

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 01: Kenley Jansen
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 01: Kenley Jansen /

The Dodgers once again appear headed for a slow April start, but that is nothing new for them and has been par for the course in the last couple of season.

After losing in fifteen innings on Monday, and being limited to one run in Tuesday night’s loss, the Dodgers are now 2-4.  There is no need to panic however as this has been what the Dodgers usually do in April.  If you recall, last season it was the Rockies who jumped out to a fast start and build up a decent lead on the Dodgers.  The Rockies would slow down in the summer months, and the Dodgers won yet another NL West division title.

Last year in April the Dodgers were 11-12 until they fattened up on the Phillies the last three games of April and swept them to finish April with a 14-12 record.  This included the game where the Dodgers hit three consecutive home runs in the ninth inning to tie and eventually win the game.  Before that series, the Dodgers played 500 baseball alternating wins and losses for most of the April.

In April of 2016, the Dodgers finished under 500 with a 12-13 record.  Although the Dodgers jumped out to a 12-7 record, things went very bad for them in the last month of April.  The Dodgers lost six consecutive games against the Padres and Marlins to finish one game under 500.  That included getting four-game swept by Don Mattingly’s Miami Marlins.

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The last time the Dodgers had a strong April was in 2015 when the club started out 13-8.  While last year’s April was technically a winning record, the Dodgers are far better than a two games over 500 team and they never really put together a decent streak of wins.  This April’s strange schedule that features the pesky Giants and Diamondbacks for nearly 3/4 of the schedule all but ensures an average start.

Considering the Dodgers are 0-2 when Clayton Kershaw starts, and Kenley Jansen has two blown saves that lead to losses, the Dodgers may be lucky to be only a couple games under 500.  It’s safe to say that Kershaw will win plenty of games this season and that Kenley Jansen will nail down another thirty plus saves.  Even with the odd struggles of Jansen, the Dodgers are barely under 500.

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While there is still plenty of games left this April, it would not be surprising if the Dodgers finished 500 or below once again.  The Dodgers have nearly made it a habit of starting slow and then get scorching hot during the summer months.  With Justin Turner out nursing a broken wrist it’s expected that the offense will be inconsistent and often held in check.  Fear not Dodger fans, the Dodgers are just having their usually April, they will once again heat up as the calendar turns.