23 September 2009

Playing for Comfort

As always, when the Dodgers score a ton of runs I like to run a list of who drove in and scored the most runs.

Furcal -- 6
Loney -- 4
Blake -- 4
Belliard -- 3
Kemp -- 3
Manny -- 2
Martin -- 2
Ethier -- 1
Kuroda -- 1
Repko -- 1
Castro -- 1

That's every member of the starting lineup with some contribution to the scoring, and also Repko and Castro. The infield did most of the damage, with 9 runs batted in and 8 runs scored.

The season has turned into a blowout. A playoff spot is all but wrapped up, and clinching could come as soon as tonight. There is plenty left to play for, but without postseason survival on the line there just isn't much of an emotional edge. I might feel different if the Rockies were closer than 5 games to the Dodgers, and the possibility of finishing second to manager Jim Tracy felt more real. Finishing ahead of the Cardinals and Phillies and getting home field advantage is important too, but it won't win a single game for you in the playoffs. The Dodgers aren't playing for survival right now. They are playing for comfort. Big difference.

So I have a hard time getting really interested in these games, especially with them starting early, and especially with a lot to do around the house. But tonight's game does feel vital, because Billingsley is starting. I want to see him do well. I want to see him starting in the postseason.

Game 151 Unfair Win Shares ( Dodgers )

Furcal -- 1
Loney -- 1
Kuroda -- 1

Kuroda kept the Dodgers close until they figured out how to hit Livan's devious "batting practice ball" in the fourth inning.

Game 151 Unfair Loss Shares ( Nationals )

Hernandez -- 3

Why, Nationals? Why did you feel the need to pick up Livan for your rotation? Isn't there some young pitcher you could try instead? Whatever the reason, the Dodgers and their fans gratefully accept your gift of a blowout win.

1 comment:

Griffster said...

I would prefer to see the Dodgers finish very strong, even though the games themselves does not interest me that much for the reasons you mention. My reasons are all of the fuzzy, human kind that has nothing to do with baseball, though!

The Dodgers will play the Phillies and the Cardinals, should they win the pennant. Else they will only play one of the two. To me, it doesn't matter which one they play first. There may be match-ups that work better for the Dodgers one way or another but to me, it doesn't matter. Would Philly be better faced in a seven game series, or would the Cards be easier in seven? I don't know, and I don't even care. In the past I would have compared starters, relievers and the bench and dug into the numbers to try to figure it out, but that was when I thought the Dodgers needed things to break just right for them and then they may be able to win. Now I'm just saying: hey guys, if you want to reach the World Series, you have to beat both teams, and you probably have to play in such a way that it doesn't matter which one comes first, too.