Dodgers Offense Backtracks in Loss to Nats
After their 4-1 loss to the Washington Nationals, the Dodgers now have one foot off of the cliff. With the St. Louis Cardinals beating the Houston Astros 5-4, the Dodgers are now three games back for the final wild card spot. And just to make things even more rosy, the Milwaukee Brewers with their 9-7 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates jumped over the Dodgers taking a half-game lead.
It's hard to win when the offense continues to be stuck in neutral. The only score came when Mark Ellis got the first Dodger hit of the game, taking a 91 mph fastball from left-handed Ross Detwiler into the Dodger dugout in left field in the fourth inning. Detwiler shrugged that off giving up only two more hits in his six innings of work to get his 10th win of the season.
Chris Capuano gave up two runs each in the third and fourth innings dropping his record to 11-11 on the season. The good news for the Dodgers is they didn't have to worry about leaving runners in scoring position. They only had one.
Burdened with having to pitch near-perfect games, the Dodger pitching staff is starting to show the aftermath of dealing with the stress. While they're not pitching horribly, they one run here, two runs there that they are giving up is starting to cost the team games.
But when the season is over, the narrative will not have anything to say about the pitching staff. It will be about the offense and the lack thereof. Was Matt Kemp too injured? Did the Trade come too late?
The Cardinals have a series against the Cubs and Astros before hosting the Nationals and Reds. The Brewers go to Washington and Cincinnati before closing at home against the Astros and Padres. And the Dodgers go to Cincinnati and San Diego before hosting the Rockies and Giants to end the season.
Seeing how the Dodgers can't beat the NL West, I think they're a little fucked unless they take a defibrillator to their offense.
Meanwhile the Nationals clinched their first playoff berth since moving to Washington and their first as a franchise since the Montreal Expos did it in 1981. The Nationals also became the first team in the Capitol District to make the playoffs since the Senators lost the World Series to the New York Giants in 1933.
It seems fitting the Nationals clinched with the Dodgers in town because it was the Dodgers who eliminated the Expos in the 1981 NLCS.