Dodgers Climb Into Second Place Behind Quiet Heroes
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By Enrique Rivera (Dodgers Correspondent) Follow @eriqwiththeq
Much has been said about Dodgers’ rookie Yasiel Puig and rightfully so. He has had one of the most memorable first months in MLB history. He has played in 32 games and is hitting .409 with 8 HRs and 19 RBIs.
You can easily connect Puig’s success with the Dodgers’ success as they’ve quietly got back in the division and are in fact now 2nd place in the NL West.
But another guy who has had the same if not better success than Puig during their first 32 games of the season is Dodgers’ shortstop Hanley Ramirez.
Hanley Ramirez smashes a homerun to the third deck at Petco Park:
Throughout the entire season the Dodgers have had stuggles having a reliable cleanup hitter as Matt Kemp hasn’t been the same and has been getting hurt again.
Finally they have a guy who Dodger skipper Don Mattingly can be confident about placing in the cleanup spot in Hanley.
Earlier in the season, when the Dodgers were really struggling to pick up any kind of momentum, Mattingly was receiving a lot of criticism. Including rumors going around that his job was in great danger.
The Dodgers front office that included president Stan Kasten had a private meeting with the Dodgers’ skipper to reassure they’re confidence on Mattingly.
Much credit has been given to the Dodger front office and Mattingly on their recent success that has gotten them into 2nd place in the division.
Juan Uribe plates 7 RBIs against his former team the Giants:
Another quiet Dodger hero is third baseman Juan Uribe. The 3-year deal is finally working as Uribe is hitting .269 with 5 HRs and 27 RBIs.
Uribe even had a career game against his former team Giants in AT&T Park as he brought in 7 RBIs with a HR – and was a single shy from a cycle.
He had a combined 6 HRs in his first two years with the Dodgers.
Kenley Jansen has taken over the closer roles for the Dodgers and has been pretty solid. Jansen has converted 9 saves out of 12 opportunities and has put together a modest 2.49 ERA with 60 Ks.
Faith and confidence has been put together in the late innings since Jansen took over for Brandon League.
Hyun-jin Ryu has been consistent with his 7-3 record and 2.82 ERA as he has followed up Clayton Kershaw‘s dominant outings. The left handers has been all the consistency in the Dodgers’ pitching staff.
Dodgers noticed their inconsistency outings out of their other pitchers so they picked up RHP Ricky Nolasco in a trade with the Miami Marlins.
The Dodgers sent three pitching prospects to Miami for Nolasco. Dodgers also agreed to pay the rest of Nolasco’s contract.
Nolasco is a SoCal native and has a career 81-72 record with a 4.44 ERA and 1,001 Ks. He debuted for the Marlins in 2006 as he put together a 11-11 record 4.82 ERA in his rookie season.
The Dodgers have a chance to take the lead in the NL West before the all-star break as they will begin a three-game series against the division leaders Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday and then begin a four-game set against the Colorado Rockies at home.
The Dodgers will also send only one player as of now to the All-Star game and that will be Dodger ace Clayton Kershaw.
Dodger rookie Yasiel Puig and veteran first baseman Adrian Gonzalez are final five nominees for the All-Star Final Vote for the National League.
***The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com or their partners***
Today’s feature was prepared by our Dodgers Correspondent Enrique Rivera. Enrique was born in Los Angeles and raised in Compton, CA. He has been a Dodger fan since he was introduced to the greatest sport of all time.
‘Eriq’ also has written a couple of baseball stories for another website here . Eriq has also talked Dodger baseball on a college radio show called LA Sports Weekly.
His second favorite thing in the world is rock and roll – and he owns his own website called xstaticradio.com as well as hosts/produces his own college radio show called X-Static Radio Live. You can also follow Enrique on Twitter Follow @eriqwiththeq
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Posted on July 9, 2013, in MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged 2013 All-Star Game, @eriqwiththeq on twitter, adrian gonzalez, arizona diamondbacks, brandon league, clayton kershaw, colorado rockies, don mattingly, hanley ramirez, Hyun-Jin Ryu, juan uribe, kenley jansen, los angeles dodgers, matt kemp, miami marlins, petco park, ricky nolasco, san diego padres, san francisco giants, yasiel puig, zack greinke. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.