All that and a Padres victory eliminating the Dodgers and shipping the Friars to the National League Championship Series.
The Padres slayed the Dragon, eliminating the 111-win Dodgers in two nights of electricity, tension, drama and great theater. Have your ears stopped ringing?
Did you get enough pictures and videos on your cell phone? Will this be a memory for a lifetime?
History will write a record 45,100 jammed Petco Park to celebrate the end of the drought in San Diego. There should be chapters and verse how this franchise got to this point.
The series also featured Geese on the field in Los Angeles. A drone that somehow hovered over the Petco Park field. Rain of all things. Everything but the reappearance of the Padres Swagg Chain or the San Diego Chicken.
Random thoughts on the eve of the NLCS with the big bat Philadelphia Phillies, in a matchup of the 5th seed vs the 6th seed that starts Tuesday here.
PETER SEIDLER…His decision to push his wealth to the center of the table a couple of years ago, has delivered us a quality product, a clubhouse full of believers, and the realization the owners wealth means San Diego can no longer view itself as small market. If John Moores and Larry Lucchino saved baseball in San Diego, Siedler’s guidance has led the team to elite status in MLB.
AJ PRELLER…His formula of ‘boots on the ground scouting’ has led to the acquisition of players from everywhere to fit key roles. I have always been aghast at how much currency he has wasted on bad contracts,overpayment on acquisitions, the contracts he paid off for the mistakes he made and the strip mining of the farm system, It finally paid off because his team is still playing and a lot of big names teams are not this week. A combo of his persistence and ownerships’ patience.
BOB MELVIN…I said all along nothing that would happen this year would be a surprise to the Friars first year manager because he has seen it all in his career as manager, bench coach, and player. He guided this team with a steady hand, but his messages in the clubhouse about pride, responsibility, being a teammate resonated all season long.
YU DARVISH..Dominant, astute, dynamic and a workhorse. This is what aces do. The more you see him and his approach, the more you appreciate what a great pitcher is.
JOE MUSGROVE…Made himself a student of the game and a warrior. The big moments in Padres baseball now have his signature attached to them…No hitter…Critical playoff win in New York…Ending Dodgers season at home with a 100-pitch effort. Hometown Hero says it all
MANNY MACHADO…MVP Manny says it all, displaying leadership, talent and a competitive fire we have not seen before from his Orioles-Dodgers days, to when he first arrived. I really believe the arrival of Tatis changed Macho’s approach for the better.
FERNANDO TATIS..Thinking of how good this team could be were he not selfish-stupid. We will see what type of player-person he is by the time he returns from this long suspension.
WIL MYERS-TRENT GRISHAM…Assume the Padres want them back, but maybe at a lower price. Maybe not complete players but guys who work hard, are pros and are liked. It’s a chemistry experience.
NEWCOMERS…Pick any name, and you say wow, what contributions, from Ha Km to Robert Suarez to Nick Martinez to Luis Garcia. All under the radar acquisitions.
JUAN SOTO-JOSH BELL…The trade with Washington was a signature acquisition and a sign the true culture of the team was changed. Assume they felt pressure all the time, and that things will be better going forward.
THE STATS….All kind of numbers to think about.
..So much for the Dodgers (23-5) record against the Padres over the last year and half.
..Finishing 22-games out of 1st place meant nothing in October
..Losing 34-games to teams with losing records this year-in the rearview mirror
..A Friars team going (5-2) against the Mets-Los Angeles when it counted the most-the playoffs…
..The bullpen brigade giving up 1-run in 16-innings to the talent laden LA batting order-allowing just 6-hits in 57-at bats…
..The bottom of the Padres batting order going (9-for-33) in the series..
..A Dodgers drought that had them going (0-20) with runners in scoring position in one stretch-and going to the clubhouse with just 5-hits in 32-at bats with runners on second or third.
DODGERS…They used the term ‘shock factor’ and ‘disappointment’ about how the series finished. Changes are likely coming to a roster that did not produce, whether it is the aging of Justin Turner, the lost-soul that is Cody Bellinger…Holes in the outfield…the uncertainty of how much Craig Kimbrel has left…What is left for Clayton Kershaw to achieve…the oft-injured members of the bullpen…the return to health of Dusin May.
DAVE ROBERTS…He has a higher winning percentage than the legends Walter Alston and Tom LaSorda, but for all the wins in regular season, there is only 1-World Series ring despite record setting payrolls over the last seven years. There seems to be more disappointment from the post season losses to the Cubs-Houston, Boston, Washington, Atlanta than there is an appreciation for how good the franchise has been under Andrew Friedman.
AUTOPSY…Someone needs to say this, with all the resources the Dodgers have, all the people in analytics and the coaching staff, the Dodgers employ in the Dave Roberts era, they should also will be remembered for all the mistakes Roberts has made handling-mishandling his pitching staff. Pick any and all and visualize a problem with their decisions in all these playoff games over the years::
..Brandon Morrow over use
..Using Max Scherzer out of the bullpen.
..Insert Julio Urias to relief pitching spots between starts
..Clayton Kershaw coming out of the bullpen
..The fatigue factor sending Joe Kelly back out to the mound
..The non-use of Dustin May-David Price-Craig Kimbrel for roster spots.
Dodgers baseball, 7-great years, but only a 2020-World Series ring to show for it.
Padres baseball..decades of bad decisions, ownership issues, financing, bad contracts and hires, now all part of history. Winning is now the is part of the culture.
Dragons, Geese, Drones and Padres wins.
Tension, electricity, drama, theatre and playoff wins.. what a weekend and a World Series berth still out there to grab..