Despite Being Dominated By The Dodgers All Season Long, The Padres Are Now One Game Away From Eliminating LA And Advancing To The NLCS
While postseason baseball is the fucking best, it can also be a real motherfucker.
On one side of the coin you can be a team like the San Diego Padres, a team that underachieved and dealt with a variety of blows all season long. They now find themselves one game away from advancing to the NLCS after winning their first home playoff game in front of fans since 1998. On the other side you've got the 111 win Los Angeles Dodgers who are all of a sudden on the brink in the NLDS, needing to win on the road Saturday night just to keep the series going. Madness. The Dodgers went 14-5 against the Padres in the 2022 regular season and absolutely none of that matters currently. They are being out-played by the San Diego Padres and look zapped of the energy and confidence that they carried into the postseason.
How is this happening? A big reason has been the San Diego Padres bullpen which has been lights out. The Dodgers have failed to scratch across a single run against the fathers' pen through the first three games of this series. Tonight in the biggest of moments they clamped down and overpowered LA's terrifying lineup. Nick Martinez, Robert Suarez, and Josh Hader have morphed into a three headed monster in relief. Speaking of Josh Hader, my god does he have it back.
Oh never heard of Robert Suarez? Get with the program.
Pop Quiz. Who has the most home runs so far in the postseason?
There's always one random guy who takes in the heightened stakes of the postseason and rises to the occasion. This year that would be Trent Grisham. .184 BA with a .626 OPS in the regular season? Water under the bridge with what he's done so far this October.
So here we are. A lineup that features guys such as Freddie Freeman, Trea Turner, Mookie Betts, Max Muncy is facing elimination in the NLDS from a team that they've manhandled all year long. Nuts. Hell, every higher seed is struggling right now besides the Stros. LA, Atlanta, and New York are all up against it right now looking for answers. Postseason baseball baby, embrace the chaos.
All four series in action Saturday. Three elimination games. Let's have a day.