Dodgers: Manny Machado Went From NLDS LVP to MVP
The Dodgers have gotten mixed results from Manny Machado including in the NLDS. Despite a slow start, Machado came around to help the Dodgers advance to the NLCS.
Outside of Pedro Baez, you would be hard pressed to find a Dodger who was more criticized than Manny Machado this season. Although it took til the end of the season for Manny to put together some clutch hits, he helped the Dodgers for a NL West tiebreaker that eventually won them their sixth straight division title.
Manny Machado got off to a slow start in the National League Division Series and at one point looked like the least valuable player in the Dodgers lineup hitting an abysmal .083. Machado’s value went beyond his .176 batting average in the NLDS. Machado finished the NLDS tied with the team lead for home runs with two.
Machado’s first home run of the series provided Clayton Kershaw with all the run support he would need in game two of the NLDS. Manny’s second home run was even bigger as it extended the Dodger lead to 6-2 in the series clinching game four victory. Machado made his hits count in the series as two of his three hits were home runs and he lead the Dodgers in RBI’s for the NLDS with six.
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At one point it looked like Mr. Machado was going to be the least valuable player for the Dodgers in the NLDS but he turned things around in a hurry. The Dodgers had plenty of big contributors in the divisional round but Manny Machado might be the MVP for the Dodgers in the NLDS. His game two homer set the tone for Kershaw’s dominant night and his game four home run helped the Dodgers avoid game five and keep their rotation lined up for the NLCS.
The Dodgers acquired Manny Machado to fill the void that was left by Corey Seager’s season-ending surgeries and Machado has already out produced what Seager did in ten playoff games last season. Last year, Seager hit one home run and knocked in six runs which is the same amount of runs Machado has knocked in, in only four playoff games this season.
Perhaps the scariest thing for the Milwaukee Brewers is that Manny Machado’s best is likely yet to come. Of the Dodgers to struggle in the NLDS, Machado is the best pure hitter and it’s a good bet that he hits for a much better average in the NLCS. Machado’s .125 BABIP from the NLDS is almost impossible to continue as the league average is .300 for BABIP.
It’s a safe bet the .282 career hitter will hit for a better average in the NLCS and hopefully bring along that explosive power bat of his. Machado also made a couple of errors in the NLDS and Machado is a better than average fielder so he should be a much better all around player in the NLCS now that he has gotten through a postseason series with the Dodgers.