Pretty fitting that Dodgers v. Nats go to a fifth and decisive game: both need this badly. Because they both have the same rep: dominate the regular season, collapse in the postseason.
The Dodgers have run up massive payrolls in the last few years and still don’t have a World Series title to show for it in 28 years. And the Nats aren’t much better; they’re everyone’s annual preseason World Series pick and they’ve never won a postseason series. So of course, it’s going to Game Five. Winner earns the right to get boatraced by the Cubs; and loser goes home, an underachiever once again.
Here’s the thing: the Dodgers bought themselves a ton of goodwill during the season by somehow managing to not only stay afloat, but turn the season around when Clayton Kershaw was out for two months. But now that they’re in the postseason, that’s out the window.
And going out in the first round, with that payroll, in this town, just doesn’t play here. And never winning anything shouldn’t be good enough for wrist band rocking Dusty Baker and the Nationals. Whoever loses tonight is going to be a huge disappointment.
Washington’s sending ace Max Scherzer to bump. He’s already called it the biggest start of his career. And I respect that he said it. Because it is. And while it looks like this is a no brainer, with Scherzer, a 4-time all-star and Cy Young winner, at home and going up against journeyman Rich Hill, it’s not a lock.
First off, that “journeyman” went 12-5 with a 2.12 era. He didn’t give up a run in three of his six regular season starts with the Dodgers, so it’s not like he’s some ham-and-egger just grooving bp fastballs. And if he gets into any trouble, you know Julio Urias will be getting loose in a hurry.
Of course you’d rather have the Cy Young winner on the mound and be at home in a must-win game, but you can’t tell me that Nats fans aren’t gripping like crazy right now. Because they are.