The storied rivalry between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants added another layer last season as the Dodgers won a second straight National League West title, beating the Giants at Dodger Stadium to clinch the division.
However, San Francisco qualified for the playoffs via the Wild Card game, and proceeded to win a third World Series title in five years, while the Dodgers were eliminated by the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Division Series.
The first meeting this season between the two rivals didn’t break in the Dodgers’ favor as they were swept in the three games at AT&T Park. Dodgers manager Don Mattingly Don Mattingly likened the sweep to some heartbreak, via Bill Plunkett of the OC Register:
“A little bit of a heartbreak, honestly,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. “Had a lead we were fighting to hold onto all day long.
The series began Tuesday with the Dodgers sitting in first place atop the division and the Giants mired in an eight-game losing streak, which included having lost nine of their last 10 games.
After a relatively easy victory in the series opener, the Giants won the next two games by one run, including a walk-off win in the 10th inning of Thursday’s matinee game. Mattingly believes the series is indicative of what lies ahead for a competitive NL West:
“Shows you what this year is going to be, what this division is going to be. So – buckle up.”
Now sitting a mere three games over .500, the Dodgers are tied for first place in the division with the San Diego Padres, whom they open a three-game set against at Petco Park on Friday night. That’s followed by a quick turnaround series with the Giants, though at Dodger Stadium.