Dodgers Week 21 In Review: Kings Of The Hill

Previous Weekly Recaps: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20

The Dodgers had a highly productive week, first going into the home of their closest pursuer and winning a series, then taking another series in Cincinnati, to help widen their lead and reestablish themselves as the overwhelmingly clear favorite to win the National League West.

The Dodgers used a mix of power -- they hit 11 home runs in their six games -- and great pitching, especially from the bullpen, to win four of six games this week.  What started as a 3½-game lead entering Monday ended as a six-game lead over both the Rockies and Giants in the division.

Dodger Batter of the WeekThis is beginning to sound like a broken record, but the Dodger outfield led the offense again this week.  Matt Kemp takes this award with his three home runs, all of which seemed to be titanic blasts.  Kemp led the club this week in runs (5), hits (9), homers (3), RBI (8), slugging percentage (.760), OPS (1.160), and steals (2).  The other two outfielders get honorable mention, as Andre Ethier hit .333/.407/.708 and Manny Ramirez hit .368/.538/.526.

Dodger Pitcher of the WeekRandy Wolf was the man this week, throwing 7.1 innings in Denver allowing only one run, just as the Dodgers needed it.  The Rockies crept to within two games after Tuesday's win, but Wolf's win held them at bay, and the Rockies coincidentally haven't won since.  Honorable mention goes to Clayton Kershaw, who pitched two gems, allowing two runs twice, but had no wins to show for it.

Week 21 Record:  4-2
29 runs scored (4.83 per game)
18 runs allowed (3.00 per game)
.705 pythagorean winning percentage*

Overall Seasonal Record:  78-53 (.595)
632 runs scored (4.82 per game)
496 runs allowed (3.79 per game)
.609 pythagorean winning percentage (80-51)*
*Note: I switched to using 1.83 as the power for the pythagorean formula, the same as Baseball-Reference.com.

The Long, Lonely Walk Back To The Dugout:  On Sunday in Cincinnati, Dodger pitchers struck out 20 Reds during the 12 inning game, including 11 by starter Clayton Kershaw, three from closer Jonathan Broxton, and two each from Ramon Troncoso, Hong-Chih Kuo, and James McDonald.  The 20 strikeouts were the second most in LA Dodger history, trailing only the 22 punchouts on August 8, 1972, also against the Reds.

Can I Borrow Your Helmet?: After entering the game in Denver in the eighth inning on Thursday, Jonathan Broxton got his first plate appearance of the year, and popped out to shortstop on the first pitch.  It was Broxton's first trip to the plate since August 15, 2008, when he walked against the Brewers.

Spelling Relief "D-O-D-G...":  The Dodger bullpen allowed a grand total of three runs this week, good for a 1.16 ERA, striking out 29 batters in 23.1 innings.  Over their last 14 games, the Dodger bullpen has allowed four earned runs in 45.2 innings, good for a 0.79 ERA and 1.204 WHIP.  On the season, the Dodger bullpen leads the majors with a 3.22 ERA.

20/20 Vision:  Matt Kemp's home run Saturday was his 20th of the season, making him the first Dodger to have 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases in the same season since Shawn Green in 2001.  Kemp became just the 8th Dodger to accomplish the feat.  On the season, Kemp has 21 home runs and 28 steals.

The Big Blue Machine:  Since the beginning of the 2006 season, the Dodgers have owned the Reds.  They captured a three-game series over the weekend, and now have won 22 of their last 26 meetings.  Aside from the 12 straight wins at Dodger Stadium, the Dodgers have also won 10 of their last 14 in Cincinnati.

Transactions:  Here are the roster moves of the week:

  • Thursday: Jason Schmidt was transferred from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL, effectively ending his Dodger career.  You made a heck of an effort to comeback, Jason, and that was to be commended.  This removed Schmidt from the 40-man roster, making room for...
  • Thursday:  Vicente Padilla had his contract purchased before his start in Colorado.  Padilla's spot on the 25-man roster was facilitated by...
  • Thursday:  Tony Abreu was optioned to Triple A Albuqerque.  He is eligible to come back to the Dodgers on September 6
  • Sunday:  The Dodgers acquired infielder Ronnie Belliard from the Nationals to bolster their bench for the playoff run.  In exchange, Washington received minor league pitcher Luis Garcia plus a minor leaguer to be named later.  Belliard is expected to arrive Monday, and a corresponding roster move will need to be made to add him to the 40-man roster to be eligible for postseason play.

More moves will come beginning this week, as active rosters expand on Tuesday, September 1.

Upcoming Week:  The Dodgers return home for a seven-game homestand, beginning with Arizona for four games and ending with San Diego for three games.  The Dodgers are 35-16 against NL West teams this season, including 18-5 at home.

Week 21 Stats

Player AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SB/CS BA/OBP/SLG OPS BABIP
Kemp 25 5 9 1 0 3 8 3 2/1 .360/.400/.760 1.160 .316
Ethier 24 3 8 3 0 2 4 3 1/0 .333/.407/.708 1.116 .400
Manny 19 4 7 0 0 1 3 6 0/1 .368/.538/.526 1.065 .400
Loney 22 2 5 1 0 2 4 5 0/0 .227/.370/.545 .916 .188
Hudson 24 3 7 0 0 1 1 2 0/0 .292/.346/.417 .763 .300
Furcal 28 4 7 1 0 1 3 2 0/0 .250/.290/.393 .683 .250
Blake 19 3 3 0 0 1 1 4 0/0 .158/.304/.316 .620 .143
Martin 18 0 5 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 .278/.278/.278 .556 .333
Castro 2 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0/0 .500/.500/1.000 1.500 1.000
Pierre 12 3 5 0 0 0 2 0 0/0 .417/.417/.417 .833 .417
Loretta 9 2 3 0 0 0 0 0 0/0 .333/.333/.333 .667 .429
Ausmus 7 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0/0 .143/.143/.143 .286 .167
Pitchers 14 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0/0 .071/.071/.071 .143 .143
Totals 223 29 62 7 0 11 28 25 3/2 .278/.349/.457 .807 .298

 

Pitcher G W-L Sv IP H R ER BB K ERA WHIP
Wolf 1 1-0 -- 7.1 5 1 1 2 5 1.23 0.955
Kershaw 2 0-0 -- 13.1 8 4 4 3 17 2.70 0.825
Padilla 1 1-0 -- 5.0 6 2 2 1 4 3.60 1.400
Billingsley 1 0-1 -- 5.0 7 4 4 4 1 7.20 2.200
Haeger 1 0-0 -- 2.1 4 4 4 2 3 15.43 2.571
Broxton 3 0-0 2 3.1 3 0 0 2 5 0.00 1.500
Weaver 1 1-0 -- 3.1 6 0 0 1 4 0.00 2.100
Troncoso 4 0-0 -- 3.0 2 0 0 0 3 0.00 0.667
Sherrill 3 0-0 -- 2.2 3 0 0 0 2 0.00 1.125
Mota 2 0-0 -- 2 2 0 0 1 2 0.00 1.500
Belisario 3 0-0 -- 3.2 3 1 1 0 3 2.45 0.818
Kuo 3 0-0 -- 3 4 1 1 1 6 3.00 1.667
McDonald 3 1-1 -- 2.1 4 1 1 2 4 3.86 1.457
Totals 6
4-2 2 56.1 57 18 18 19 59 2.88 1.349
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