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Yes, you read that right. The defending World Series Champions are in 3rd place in the month of May. Are the Los Angeles Dodgers suffering from a championship hangover as so many have experienced before them? A team this stacked with talent and money would be a complete disaster to not win their division. So should we start to worry?
No. I mean the Dodgers are still 17-15. Not great, but not terrible. In fact, they are still on our number one for our May 2021 MLB Team Rankings. Granted, they are 4-13 in their previous 17 games but that also means that they started the season 13-2. And you can cut them a bit of slack considering that they faced some decent opposition like the Mariners, Padres, Brewers, and Cubs over the course of their last 17 games. I would say the most worrisome sign that I would take from this 17 game stretch is that the Cubs were able to win games in which the Dodgers sent Clayton Kershaw, Trevor Bauer, and Walker Buehler to the mound.
Their biggest issue? Surprisingly it’s been their lack of run support that has caused them to lose a good chunk of their games. In their last 17 games, they have been held to 3 runs or less in 10 of those games. While their pitching hasn’t been great either, I would put more emphasis on the run support. Once they can get their bats going again, they should have no trouble putting some W’s on the board.
May schedule will put Dodgers to the test
The month of May will not make it easy on them as they are set to play the Angels, Mariners, Astros, Cardinals, and two series against the Giants. Although, I still fully expect the Dodgers to be above .500 at the end of May.
Speaking of May, Dustin May is set to miss the rest of the year with Tommy John surgery. It is extremely depressing to see such a young talent go through the rigors of Tommy John but hopefully he can make a full and quick recovery. With May gone for the rest of the year, the Dodgers will either look to Gonsolin or Price for some time in the rotation but they are both out with injuries as well.
Injuries plaguing the Dodgers starting rotation
Gonsolin is recovering from a right shoulder injury and he is around 4 weeks away from returning to the roster. Price on the other hand will be out until mid-June with a hamstring injury. So for the month of May, Dodgers may have to work with a 4-man rotation. Of course, they can mix in a bullpen game or have a pitcher like Mitch White go for a few innings to start the game.
Either way, the Dodger’s depth is built for injuries to be manageable but that margin of error is getting extremely thin.