To say the Los Angeles Dodgers have not played good baseball in 2018 would be an understatement. Coming off a year in which they won an MLB-best 104 games and reached the World Series, they currently sit in fourth place in the National League West at 16-22.
The Dodgers’ recent stretch of games has been their worst, losing 12 of their last 17, including loses to some of the worst teams in the league such as the Miami Marlins, San Diego Padres and Cincinnati Reds.
So far, the Dodgers have dropped the first two of a four-game series to the Reds at Dodger Stadium after Saturday night’s 5-2 wire-to-wire loss.
Unlike 2017 where it seemed like no deficit was insurmountable for the Dodgers, they have yet to show that kind of heart in 2018. One person who has noticed that is SportsNet LA analyst and former Dodger Jerry Hairston Jr., who played 16 big league seasons.
Hairston gave a speech during the postgame show on Saturday night, urging the team not to give up hope and continue fighting through their struggles, via SportsNet LA:
— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) May 12, 2018
Hairston was never an All-Star on the field in his career, but he surely was known for his clubhouse leadership, especially in his time with the Dodgers at the back half of his career.
He won a World Series while with the New York Yankees in 2009, so he knows what it takes to reach the ultimate goal that the Dodgers fell just short of in 2017. Hairston was also a part of a Dodger team in 2013 that dealt with a glut of injuries and fell behind in the standings early in the season, much like this year’s group.
That team was in last place on June 21, 9.5 games out of first, and wound up winning the NL West by 11 games with a 92-70 record after a historic 42-8 stretch.
With the return of both Justin Turner and Logan Forsythe expected in the coming weeks, maybe they can spark some life in the anemic Dodgers offense, much like Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez did for that 2013 team.