SELL­OUT CROWD, ACE PITCH­ING Dodgers re­mind us why they’ll come up short in Oc­to­ber

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - Sports - BY DAVID WHITE Spe­cial to The Bee

Wel­come to the fu­ture, where there is no tick­er­tape fu­ture for those squat­ters on Chavez Ravine.

The Dodgers will make it to the World Se­ries, be­cause the Giants failed to trade for Madi­son Bum­gar­ner quadru­plets to have a chance. And the Dodgers are go­ing to lose their last game of the sea­son, again, be­cause what else can they do?

Don’t be­lieve me? You should have jumped in the car with me and the wife to hit Fri­day night’s game at Dodger Sta­dium, where see­ing re­mains dis­be­liev­ing no mat­ter how many wins the Dodgers rack up on this side of Oc­to­ber.

That in­errant truth pre­vailed Fri­day, when the Yan­kees swung by to film a pre­view trailer for the 2019 World Se­ries.

The wife’s a Dodgers fan, be­cause her re­sis­tance is strong. We picked a game that was sure to make her happy, where the Yan­kees came into town rid­ing three straight losses and the Dodgers were rolling out their Cy Young nom­i­nee.

This was sup­posed to be a Dodgers win and help prove the the­ory of happy wife mak­ing a happy life. Af­ter 21 years of mar­riage, we still won’t know what a happy wife makes, be­cause she re­mains faith­ful to the two in­sti­tu­tional fail­ures in her life – her base­ball team, and the sportswrit­er on her couch.

It was just one reg­u­larsea­son game, yeah, yeah. But you bet­ter be­lieve the Dodgers wanted this one. A sell­out crowd of 53,775 came ex­pect­ing this to be a state­ment game.

That it was, the state­ment be­ing the Dodgers still can’t come through in a tight spot, where there are mar­bles to be won. In this case, home-field ad­van­tage in the World Se­ries is on the ta­ble.

The Dodgers played as if they needed the ho­tel re­ward points.

We saw that when Fresno State alum Aaron Judge sent Hyun-Jin Ryu’s body of work over the left-field wall into Bur­bank. Then Gary Sanchez sent a sou­venir into the bleach­ers.

Didi Gre­go­rius’ grand slam rocket boosted Ryu’s ERA from 1.64 to 2.00 – in a sin­gle game. Do you have any idea how hard it is to add Point Thirty Six points to an All-Star pitcher’s ERA in late Au­gust?

Not as hard as one would think, ap­par­ently.


That Dodgers slug­ger Cody Bellinger of theirs? The MVP can­di­date struck out three times against James Pax­ton, who we thought was a bench player for the Chicago Bulls.

“We were look­ing for­ward to this,” Judge told re­porters af­ter the walk in the park.

Imag­ine that. The Yan­kees were visit­ing the win­ningest team in all of base­ball and weren’t shak­ing in their cleats.

Why would they? The only time the Dodgers proved us wrong is when we wrote they would win the World Se­ries a few years back.

What a dis­ap­point­ment. Their players are bet­ter than the Yan­kees’ players. Their pitch­ers pitch cir­cles around that sorry ex­cuse for a Yan­kees ro­ta­tion.

And still, 10 to 2, in fa­vor of the Bronx.

No doubt the Dodgers were go­ing to bounce back with a win Satur­day. Maybe they take the se­ries Sun­day night.

But Fri­day showed us all we need to see.

Ev­ery time the Dodgers have a chance to make a mean­ing­ful point, they only man­age to prove our point: They have long been, and will re­main, an amaz­ing reg­u­lar-sea­son watch.

Just make sure to turn the chan­nel when the Oc­to­ber leaves turn. David White is a for­mer Fresno Bee staff writer and NFL beat writer at the San Fran­cisco Chron­i­cle, now a pas­tor and Sun­day sports colum­nist for The Bee: [email protected]­, @by­david­white


New York’s Didi Gre­go­rius, sec­ond from left, ap­proaches home plate af­ter hit­ting a grand slam Fri­day as Gary Sanchez, left, Aaron Judge, cen­ter, and DJ LeMahieu wait for him; Dodgers catcher Will Smith is at right. The Yan­kees won the game 10-2.

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