November 18, 2016 by Shannon Michael Smith
Some say they shouldn’t have been there in the first place. Some say they weren’t built for the postseason. Some say they left those men to die up on that hill. Either way, Los Dogs couldn’t get past the two-game win hump in the NLCS and crapped out to the Cubs. In the end, it’s the same old story, same old song and dance for the Dodgers. Ownership seems content to get to the playoffs alone. As long as the stands are filled, they’ll keep raising ticket prices and churning out mediocrity. Looking forward to ’17?
Hell, we didn’t think they’d make the postseason, let alone reach the NLCS (although we said if they did, they’d never get past Chicago.) We certainly underestimated the bullpen coming into ’16, but we were pretty much right about the starting rotation (minus Kersh.)
Riddle us this!
We know. There are many, many questions going into next season. Can Los Dogs retain Turner, Hill, and Jansen? Reddick looks like he’s headed to Houston. Will they trade Pederson and Puig? Will Braun be a Dodger in ’17? Who will play second base? Ian Kinsler? What about left field? What about right?
We predict that the front office will cry cheap on Braun while they raise their parking prices to $1,000 per car. Turner and Jansen are most likely to remain Dodgers. Will Hill’s price tag prove to be too much for an ownership group that would probably bring cheap hot dogs to a family gathering. Yes, Christmas Vacation is on our minds…
Seager, Gonzalez, Kershaw, Grandal, and Maeda will certainly be in blue next year. Seager’s raucous rookie run kept us riveted all season long. The future’s so bright, he’s gotta wear shades! Gotta love those Timbuk 3 references…or not.
Joc Pederson in a L.A. Rams uniform? Doubtful, but can you imagine?
Let’s Talk About A-Gone
We know Gonzo’s power numbers were down this year. He only hit 18 home runs and drove in 90 rabbits. His postseason numbers were el stinko as he only managed to hit .195 with two home runs. There’s no doubt he’s the greatest first baseman the Dodgers have had in a while, his regular season numbers over the years are insane for Los Dogs, but Gonzo is never going to be the guy that hits the game-winning shot in the NLCS. Captain Clutch in the playoffs, he ain’t.
What about Chase?
No one expected Utley to come in and help the Dodgers as well as he did in ’16. We figured he’d see time here and there off the bench, but the old man played in 138 games and made five errors. He only hit .107 in the playoffs and .241 during the regular season, though. Many predict Ian Kinsler to come over and play second next year (he’d sure help Los Dogs hit left-handed pitching.)
How long can King Kersh reign?
Old King Kersh was rolling along and destroying everyone before the injury in June. He ended up going 12-4 this year with a 1.69 ERA (2-1, 4.44 ERA in the playoffs.) It kills us how the Dodger front office wastes this guy’s talent by surrounding him with mediocrity. Maeda had a decent season but ran out of gas in the playoffs. Los Dogs never replaced Zack Greinke, let alone found the third starter they needed to get them over the NLCS hump. If Hill gets away, and the Dodgers don’t replace him, it’ll mean more pressure for King Kersh and brittle Maeda. How will the Terrible Teen fit into all this?
Maeda had a good season, even though he could never get past five innings and made the bullpen work like hell. He was awful in the postseason, which wasn’t really surprising as endurance was always in question for Maeda this year (his first in the MLB, pssssssst…they pitch way less in Japan.)
Rich Hill came over around the deadline from the A’s and sat on the bench with a blistered finger. When the bandages came off, he nearly threw a perfect game (we’ll never know as Roberts yanked him in the seventh inning.) He went 3-2 with Los Dogs and posted a 1.83 ERA. His postseason numbers were 1-1 with a 3.46 ERA. The Dodgers will need Hill in the rotation going into 2017.
How about the skip?
Pampered scribes seem to agree, Dave Roberts held this rag-tag bunch together through thick and thin (especially the absence of Kershaw.) We hated it when he yanked Stripling and Hill from no-hitters, but aside from that he was aces.
Ownership and the Front Office…YUKKUM YUKKUM
Who builds a team that can’t hit left handed pitching? Who replaces Greinke with Scott Kazmir? Who signs injury-prone pitchers to giant contracts? Who shrugs their shoulders and raises ticket prices after another postseason washout? The Prince of Darkness? The Grinch? Lionel Barrymore? You know who. Zaidi and Friedman’s heads should be on spikes by now. Are these owners blind? Seriously, do they sit up there in plush leather chairs, swirling snifters of satanic brandy as they light Cuban cigars with million dollar bills? We know what the Gugenswine look like, but we still picture them as Orson Welles and Robert Prosky…laughing greedily…as they raise beer prices to $32 a cup. Like we said, same old story, same old song and dance.
What will rascalsoftheravine be like next year? We’ll be adding video clips and possibly a YouTube Channel. We’re adding new writers and men of mirth, such as the ultra-boss TOM FOSTEX and COLONEL MUSTARD! We’ll be at Spring Training in March 2017, with a whole new adventure at rascalsoftheravine’s HQ in AZ, Tequila Towers!!!! Barring a miracle, it looks like Dodger fans are in for same old monkeyshines next season! So stay tuned, mirth-seekers, there’s plenty of action to come!!!