CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Premium and Super Premium Subscribers Get a 20% Discount at MLB.tv!

<< Previous Article
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: ... (08/20)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article What You Need to Know:... (08/19)
Next Column >>
Premium Article What You Need to Know:... (08/21)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Minor League Update: G... (08/20)

August 20, 2013

What You Need to Know

Recapping the Dodgers' Incredible Run

by Daniel Rathman


The Monday Takeaway
When the Dodgers took the field last night, they did so nearly two months removed from their last string of consecutive defeats. They had logged seven separate winning streaks of four games or longer since their last losing streak. And over that 53-game span, they were 42-11.

Matched up against fellow first-year starter Hyun-jin Ryu, Jose Fernandez set out to do what the likes of Matt Cain, Cliff Lee, and Stephen Strasburg could not: prevent the Dodgers from rebounding immediately from a rare loss. The young right-hander needed 109 pitches to complete six innings, but he held Don Mattingly’s club to two runs (one earned) on four hits and three walks, striking out eight along the way. With help from A.J. Ramos, Chad Qualls, and Steve Cishek, Fernandez came out on top in the “ace-off” and dealt the Dodgers their first two-plus-game skid since June 20-21.

Now that Los Angeles’ surge has, at the very least, been slowed, it’s worth reflecting on just how impressive it was. Immediately after those back-to-back June setbacks, the Dodgers embarked on a 50-game march up the standings over which they went 42-8, rising from 9 ½ games behind the Diamondbacks to 8 ½ games ahead of them. They capped that climb with a 10-game winning streak—snapped by the Phillies on Sunday night—and, with it, accomplished what only two other Modern Era teams, the 1941 Yankees and the 1942 Cardinals, had ever done.

As the lineup got healthy and Yasiel Puig arrived from Double-A Chattanooga, the Dodgers’ pitching staff jelled into the league’s best. Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, Ryu, and company collectively posted a 2.45 ERA between June 22 and August 17. In 459 innings spread across those 50 games, they did just about everything well.

They issued only 114 walks, a 6.2 percent base-on-balls rate that would rank 33rd among qualifying starters if sustained over a full season. They struck out 391 batters, a 21.2 percent strikeout rate that would place 32nd in that same group. They allowed only 32 home runs, or 0.63 per nine innings, good for 17th in the qualifying-starters pack. And they helped their catchers nab 11 of 25 would-be base-stealers, a 44 percent caught-stealing rate that’s just a tick below Yadier Molina’s (45 percent) career clip.

Meanwhile, Mattingly’s hitters, led by a resurgent (and generally healthy) Hanley Ramirez and a sizzling Yasiel Puig, offered their pitchers ample support. Between June 22 and August 17, Ramirez batted .358/.410/.654 in 41 games. Puig, ready from the moment he earned the promotion from Double-A Chattanooga, made adjustments when pitchers adjusted to him, and then made history. With those two doing the heavy lifting, the Dodgers combined to bat .285/.344/.427—becoming, for the sake of comparison, a team of 2013 Ryan Zimmermans (.266/.342/.431), even though their pitchers had to hit.

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

0 comments have been left for this article.

<< Previous Article
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: ... (08/20)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article What You Need to Know:... (08/19)
Next Column >>
Premium Article What You Need to Know:... (08/21)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Minor League Update: G... (08/20)

RECENTLY AT BASEBALL PROSPECTUS
Premium Article Minor League Update: Games of July 25-27
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Monday, July 28
Fantasy Article The Buyer's Guide: Francisco Liriano
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Bochy and Peavy, Back ...
This is Not Your Father's Baseball Road Trip...
Premium Article The HOF Rule Change
Premium Article Monday Morning Ten Pack: July 28, 2014

MORE FROM AUGUST 20, 2013
Hot Prospect Video
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Bye Charlie
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit List: Tuesday, August 20
Premium Article Transaction Analysis: Boston, Xander Bogaert...
Fantasy Article The Stash List: The Final 2013 Installment
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Should I Play for "The Mo...
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around the League: August 20,...

MORE BY DANIEL RATHMAN
2013-08-28 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: August's Surprising P...
2013-08-22 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The Royals Run Out of...
2013-08-21 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Corbin Keeps Rolling
2013-08-20 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Recapping the Dodgers...
2013-08-19 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The C&D Boys
2013-08-16 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The Rays Rotation Get...
2013-08-15 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Soriano Strikes Again
More...

MORE WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
2013-08-23 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Braun Comes Clean(er)
2013-08-22 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The Royals Run Out of...
2013-08-21 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Corbin Keeps Rolling
2013-08-20 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Recapping the Dodgers...
2013-08-19 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The C&D Boys
2013-08-16 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: The Rays Rotation Get...
2013-08-15 - Premium Article What You Need to Know: Soriano Strikes Again
More...