The Dodgers became the second team to land a postseason post in 2021, officially extending their run of playoffs to nine seasons with their 8-4 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
It’s a checkpoint that only 10 clubs out of 30 will reach. They achieved it despite the fact that several key contributors missed significant periods of time and deployed more players than any other team in franchise history. They would have preferred to wait another day.
The Dodgers sealed their place on Tuesday after the San Diego Padres lost to the San Francisco Giants, the overnight monster the Dodgers are still chasing for the coveted National League West title. As a result, the Dodgers stayed 2½ games behind their rivals in the north in the division race, with 16 games remaining in the regular season, rather than winning a game against the Giants overall.
The context created a muted appreciation on the field after Kenley Jansen got Christian Walker to quit the game. The large screens facing the diamond showed a graphic announcing the achievement. Below, the players and coaches went through their usual handshake line. You don’t have dog poo.
“It’s a special moment coming into the postseason now nine years in a row?” Dodger’s first baseman Max Muncy said. “That is a remarkable achievement. The off-season is not a matter of course. It’s a special moment and everyone is looking forward to it. “
In the clubhouse, the team received blue “Built for October” T-shirts and gathered for a champagne toast. Manager Dave Roberts and third baseman Justin Turner relayed two messages to the group.
“You never want to get tired and don’t appreciate getting into the postseason because it’s not a rite of passage,” said Roberts. “We also realized that we still have a lot to do and that this is just the beginning.”
Dodgers’ first baseman Max Muncy celebrates after scoring a double home run in Tuesday’s third inning.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)
The day started with the Dodgers (93-53) needing a win and a loss from two of the Padres, the Cincinnati Reds and the St. Louis Cardinals. The Reds were the first to obey and fell to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Cardinals then defeated the New York Mets in 11 innings. The falling Padres later lost their fifth game in a row. The Giants scored their ninth straight win after beating their playoff ticket on Monday.
It looks like the Dodgers, holding the second-best record in the majors, would play the Cardinals in a do-or-die wildcard game at Dodger Stadium on October 6th. The Cardinals are 17 games behind them in the leaderboard.
“We have a couple of guys here who are doing this for the first time [clinching a playoff spot]”Said Justin Turner. “We wanted to recognize it and make sure the guys knew that this wasn’t being taken lightly. Enjoy it, appreciate it. But at the same time, our focus is on what lies ahead of us. That’s the mentality. “
The Dodgers, despite their success this season, haven’t built many games from the book like Tuesday’s win. Their offense hit, hit three home runs and continued after an early climb. On the hill, they took advantage of a # 5 starter to complete a spin through a five-man rotation for the first time in months and take their fifth straight win.
That starter was Tony Gonsolin, who made his best performance of the season. The right-hander had been handcuffed by high pitch counts on nearly all of his first eleven starts this season. On Tuesday, in his second outing since leaving the injured list, he withdrew the first six clubs on just 20 fields in a row. In the end, he threw 67 pitches over five goalless innings. He gave up two punches, walked two, and hit six.
Gonsolin’s performance, one night after Clayton Kershaw’s return from the injured list, completed a dominant through rotation. Julio Urías, Walker Buehler, Max Scherzer, Kershaw and Gonsolin combined the opponents into three runs with 32 strikeouts over 31⅓
The Dodgers gave Gonsolin a head start in the first inning on back-to-back doubles against right-hander Luke Weaver of Arizona from Muncy and Trea Turner. Muncy defeated a double home run with Albert Pujols’ bat in the third inning. Trea Turner cracked a solo home run in the fifth inning and Will Smith in the sixth.
The performance indicator is a recipe for success; the Dodgers are now 21-1 this season if they collect at least three home runs.
“Pitching has carried us all year,” said Muncy. “It’s time the offense got stronger and got it going for more than a game or two. Hopefully we can do that. “
They’ll need more breakouts and some losses from the Giants to get their ninth straight league title and avoid a scary playoff in one game. Tuesday was the realization of a month-long persecution. Another stays.
Dodgers take playoff spot with 8-4 win over Diamondbacks.
Turner and Scherzer named nominees for the Clemente Award
Justin Turner was named the Dodgers’ nominee for the 2021 Roberto Clemente Award on Tuesday. It’s the fourth time in five years that Turner has been named the team’s nominee, he was also one of 30 finalists in 2017, 2018 and 2020.
Scherzer was selected as the Washington Nationals candidate; the Nationals traded Scherzer to Los Angeles on July 30th. Scherzer, front runner at the NL Cy Young Award, is nominated for the first time.
Kershaw is the last dodger to win the 2012 award.
“It’s very special for me and my wife Kourtney. We take great pride in giving back to the community, helping people who are less fortunate, people in need, helping people get up after being knocked down and get back on their feet, “said Turner. “And being the candidate on this team, with a lot of people doing a lot of great things in our community, is something very special and something we don’t take for granted.”
Jansen hired again
Jansen was put back on the paternity list ahead of Tuesday night’s game. The Dodgers chose right-handed Mitch White to make room for Jansen in the active squad.
Jansen ended last week with a pitching for the first time this season on three consecutive days. He went on vacation on Sunday, the day his wife Gianni gave birth to their third child, a daughter named Key’Gia Keziah. The right-hander threw a 1-2-3 ninth inning to complete Tuesday’s Dodgers win.