Mets @ Dodgers August 12, 2013: The March to October

August 12, 2013 at 9:55 pm | Posted in Game Threads | Leave a comment

dodger_stadium_2013_150x150Least surprising lineup news of the day: Nick Punto is starting at shortstop, and you can take that in either a “because Hanley Ramirez still isn’t ready” way or a “because there was no way Dee Gordon was playing again after last night’s disaster” way. Each seems equally appropriate.

A win tonight gives the Dodgers the best 46-game run for the franchise dating back to 1900, per the team, and that’s beginning to get a little… well, I don’t even know the proper word, really. Obviously, it’s still amazingly fun, but as the Diamondbacks continue to fade — Cody Ross is likely out for the season now after dislocating his hip — and the Dodger lead in the division increases, the playoffs almost seem like a foregone conclusion. That’s right, I’m dropping the mega-jinx here: the Dodgers are making the playoffs

Mets
Dodgers
LF
Young
LF
Crawford
CF
Lagares
2B
M.Ellis
2B
Murphy
1B
Gonzalez
RF
Byrd
RF
Puig
1B
Davis
CF
Ethier
3B
Flores
C
A.Ellis
C
Buck
3B
Uribe
SS
Quintanilla
SS
Punto
P
Mejia
P
Nolasco

That’s not true just for the Dodgers, of course; the entire National League playoff picture is pretty much set, barring a collapse by the Reds for the second playoff spot. So while this run is just phenomenal to watch, it almost now seems like we’re marking time, really. Is it October yet? The question now really is, can the Dodgers catch the Braves or Pirates for the best record in the NL and the right to face the winner of the one-game wild card game? Otherwise, this is really about chasing records and getting Hanley Ramirez and Matt Kemp healthy… and that being the case, it’s why I’m not really killing the team about having a semi-healthy Ramirez eating up bench space right now.

As for the game, the Mets are pretty unappealing without David Wright, but do take note of two of their young players. I saw Jenrry Mejia‘s first start of the season last month in Washington, and he was outstanding; remember, he was good enough to make the Mets at 20 in 2010 before blowing out his arm, and in three starts he’s now got an 18/3 K/BB. Third baseman Wilmer Flores has taken Wright’s spot and was a three-time Baseball America top-100 prospect before he kept getting moved down the defensive spectrum, but he’s still only 22 and has driven in nine in his first six games.

In minor league news: our friend Chris Jackson in Albuquerque posts that the Isotopes are going to be adding a new player who has “caught in the past, now more of 1B/DH”. No, it’s not Cuban defector Jose Abreu for any of a million reasons, but feel free to ramp up the speculation. And by “ramp up the speculation,” I do mean “expect an independent league signing you’ve never heard of.” I’ll start: Koby Clemens!

Also, there’s this: remember how badly we hated the “James McDonald for Octavio Dotel” deal? Remember how we still hated it, even when Andrew Lambo seemed to get stuck in Double-A for the Pirates endlessly and played in just 35 games in the minors last year? Well, now Lambo is tied for the minor league lead with 31 homers… and’s he about to make his long-awaited major league debut. Thanks, Ned.

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