The Dodgers’ offense did nothing last night, as they fell to the Giants 4-0 in the first game of the NLDS. Here are my three biggest takeaways.
The offense continues to struggle
Over the final five games of the regular season, the Dodgers scored 45 runs. Their offense was hitting their stride at the right time and they were having one of their hottest stretches of the season. It was the worst possible time for time off, as they had back-to-back off-days.
Well, it looks like the offense has lost all momentum as the bats have been quiet through two postseason games. In 18 combined innings, the Dodgers offense has scored only three runs. Granted, the three runs were pretty important in the Wild Card game, but the offense hasn’t done much of anything so far.
Last night, the Dodgers had 11 at-bats with a runner on base. They didn’t record a single hit. Overall, they were 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position and left five runners on base. LA left seven on base in their Wild Card win.
The Dodgers managed two doubles last night, but both of them came with no runners on base. On Wednesday, with the exception of the two homers, LA didn’t have an extra base hit.
The most concerning thing about last night for me was that the Dodgers didn’t even draw a walk. They had only one three-ball count all night long. That’s just inexcusable. A lineup filled with All-Stars and they only see ONE three-ball count. That can’t happen.
I’ll just leave this here....
How bad was the #Dodgers offense tonight?— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) October 9, 2021
They scored 0 runs, didn't draw a single walk and struck out 11 times
They are only the 4th team in MLB postseason history to put up those numbers
Walker Buehler was still pretty good
We’ve come to expect so much from Walker Buehler that we forget he’s human. By his standards, last night was a “bad” postseason start. In 6 2⁄3 innings, Buehler allowed three runs on five hits. Although he didn’t really have his best stuff, he still kept the Dodgers in the game.
His biggest mistake was in the first inning. With two outs and a runner on third base, Buehler threw a 3-0 fastball down the middle to Buster Posey. The veteran catcher made him pay, hitting a two-run homer to give the Giants the lead.
“It’s on me to try and create some momentum,” Buehler said following the game. “I kind of sucked that out of our dugout. This game is on me.”
Buehler was pretty good the rest of the way, at least until his next mistake in the seventh inning. Up until the seventh, the Giants didn’t even have a runner in scoring position. Kris Bryant led off the bottom of the inning and worked the count full. Buehler threw a fastball right down the middle, with Bryant taking advantage and hitting a home run to make it 3-0.
For not having his best stuff, Buehler gave the Dodgers everything they could ask for. Had the offense scored six or seven runs, we’d likely be talking about how Buehler had yet another solid postseason start.
This series is far from over
The Dodgers having to play the best team in baseball in only a five-game series certainly isn’t ideal. It also isn’t the best considering they trail the series 1-0. I get that teams who win the first game in a best-of-5 series go on to win about 75% of the time, but that means nothing.
LA will have Julio Urias on the mound today and a win gives the Dodgers home field advantage, with two of the final three games at Dodger Stadium. As you all know, the Dodgers have been fantastic at Dodger Stadium this season, so going back to LA tied 1-1 would be massive.
Remember a few years ago when the Dodgers jumped out to a 1-0 series lead against the Nationals in the NLDS? We all know the outcome of that series.
Just win tonight and the Dodgers are right back in this series.