Dodgers struggling after strong run into August

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Tonight the Los Angeles Dodgers will play the second game of a series with the Colorado Rockies, a team that is looking to lock down a spot in the NL Wild Card Game. On Thursday in the first game, the Rockies clobbered the Dodgers’ ace pitcher, Clayton Kershaw and the bullpen, winning the game 9-1.

Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw

Kershaw gave up four runs, three of them on a first inning three-run home run by Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado. The Rockies are a team that can taste the postseason. In this first half of the season they led the National League West Division, with the Arizona Diamondbacks close behind. But in June the Dodgers got into gear and began a run that by August 24 put them ahead of the DBacks and Rockies by a double digit spread. Los Angeles got to 90 wings after than any Dodgers team in history, but then the ran into the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Dodgers won the first game against Milwaukee — at Dodger Stadium August 25 — with Kenta Maeda picking up the win, but the Brewers came back to win the next two games and after that series the Dodgers went to Phoenix, AZ and were swept by the Diamondbacks. They went to San Diego and Kershaw got his first win after being out for an injury in the first game of the series. But the Padres won the next three games. The Dodgers came back to Dodger Stadium to face the Diamondbacks once again and were swept in three games.

This is the worst time in the season for a team to hit a slump. The Dodgers still lead the division by ten games, but technically the Diamondbacks could overtake the Dodgers if they continue on their incredible run — they have won 13 straight, 15 of their last 16 games — and if Los Angeles continues in its slump. The Dodgers need to be on a winning trend going into October to have the momentum to win in the postseason.

Dodgers rookie outfielder Alex Verdugo

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts spoke to our sports reporter Claudia Gestro about the Dodgers season, including this slump. He told her the team still has a positive outlook on the season, but he knows the team needs to get out of this malaise if they hope to win in October. If the team still comes out to the stadium expecting to win every day, eventually the Dodger bats will come back. The question is, when?

Maybe tonight as they face the Colorado Rockies. German Marquez (10-6) gets the start for Colorado and Yu Darvish (8-11) for the Dodgers.

Below are some of the video reports Claudia has conducted with the Dodgers and their opponents.

Photos by Claudia Gestro