The Dodgers are in the hunt for their sixth Western Division title since 1995. The good news is that when they have led the division going into September, they have made playoffs six out of seven times, once as a wild card.
The 1997 season was the only one where the Dodgers had a lead and did not make the playoffs. In fact they ended up in a tie for what would be now the second wild card.
|Year||Record on 8/31
||Place||Games Ahead/Behind||September Record||Final Record||Place||Games Ahead/Behind|
|1996||74-61||Second||1||16-11||90-72||Second - Wild Card||1|
|2006||71-62||First||3||17-12||88-74||First - Wild Card||Tied|
What will happen next remains to be seen, the Dodgers and Giants each have three series with a team over .500, two of them are against one another while the third one is with another playoff contender. The Giants have played slightly above .500 ball against NL West teams while the Dodgers have done well against their NL West competition.
Including 2004, the Dodgers have gone to the last few games to clinch a playoff spot. Only in 2013 (where they held a double digit lead from the beginning of the month), did the Dodgers clinch early.