Dave Roberts: Dodgers Face Important Week In NL West Race
Dave Roberts
John Hefti/USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers sit four games behind the National League West-leading San Francisco Giants and the remainder of this week could decide if they will be able to win their ninth consecutive division title.

The Dodgers have two more games with the Philadelphia Phillies before continuing their road trip with a series against the New York Mets. The Phillies and Mets are fighting with the Atlanta Braves for the NL East crown, so they both have a lot to play for this week and will likely turn up the intensity against the Dodgers.

For the Giants, they face the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies, who are two of the worst teams in baseball.

Because of the matchups, if the Dodgers don’t win both series, they could fall even further behind the Giants, which makes this a potential make-or-break week.

“I think where we’re at on the calendar, every game is big and every game has to be big, regardless of opponent,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

“We’re playing a team that’s as hot as any in baseball right now, so we’ve got to play good baseball. The Mets, they’re in the middle of a division race, so this road trip is going to be important. But I think it just boils down to us playing good baseball.”

The Dodgers only have three games remaining against the Giants this season, which will be played Sept. 3-5, so they will need some help from others to have a chance at winning the NL West.

According to Fangraphs, the Dodgers still have a 58.7% chance to win the division while the Giants are at 37.6% despite leading by four games. However, the Giants have proven time and time again this year they excel at defying the odds.

Although the Dodgers still have a lot of work to do, Albert Pujols is comfortable with where the team is right now.

Dodgers will rely on Mitch White for Thursday

The Dodgers went into their series at Citizens Bank Park not yet decided on whether they would use a bullpen game or spot starter come Thursday.

The Dodgers are in need of a pitcher for the series finale because they decided to give Julio Urias, who is at his career high in innings pitched, and Walker Buehler both an extra day of rest.

“Every game is important, and the pitcher, individual player, their health is important,” Roberts explained.

“Giving him an extra day, giving Walker an extra day, we just feel that’s the best way to navigate it. That was the impetus for that day on Thursday for the bullpen or spot starter.”

What does appear to be certain is Mitch White will handle the majority of the game, either in the form of a traditional start or following an opener.

Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and more!