2016 Los Angeles Dodgers
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2016 Los Angeles Dodgers / Franchise: Los Angeles Dodgers / BR Team Page
Managed by Dave Roberts
History, Comments, Contributions
The 2016 Los Angeles Dodgers approached the season with a simple goal in mind: to go deep in the postseason for once. That came after winning a division title for the third straight time in 2015, something the team had never done before in its long and glorious history. However, things did not start off well, because after losing co-ace pitcher Zack Greinke to free agency during the off-season, they were racked by injuries in spring training. Among those missing time in the spring were Ps Brett Anderson, Mike Bolsinger, Scott Kazmir, Brandon McCarthy, Hyun-Jin Ryu and Yimi Garcia, C Yasmani Grandal, IFs Howie Kendrick, Alex Guerrero and Corey Seager and OFs Andre Ethier, Yasiel Puig and Kike Hernandez. As a result, a week before the season was set to open, the opening day roster was a huge question mark.
The Dodgers set a record on Opening Day, April 4th, when they shut out the San Diego Padres, 15-0, as it was the most lopsided shutout win on opening day in major league history. The previous record was a 14-0 win by the 1911 Pittsburgh Pirates over the Cincinnati Reds. Ace Clayton Kershaw was at his best, allowing only one hit while striking out 9 over 7 scoreless innings. However, apart from Kershaw's usual otherworldly performance, and solid performances Japanese off-season signing Kenta Maeda and rookie SS Corey Seager, the first couple of months of the year were disappointing. They were only three games above .500 at the end of May, and trailing the first-place San Francisco Giants by a couple of games. That's when they decided to get rid of some high-cost players, first IF Alex Guerrero, who had spent the year battling injuries in the minors, and then OF Carl Crawford, who was hitting .185 and still had $35 million due him.
The Dodgers received a huge blow on June 30th when they had to place Clayton Kershaw on the disabled list with no timetable set for his return. They had already fallen to six games back of the Giants by then. With a starting rotation in shambles, they had to rely on 19-year-old rookie Julio Urias, another rookie Brock Stewart who had begun the year in Class A, and reclamation project Bud Norris to make do in Kershaw's absence. The Dodgers did get some good news a few days later when Brandon McCarthy returned from over a year of inactivity caused by Tommy John surgery and was a winner in his return on July 3rd. July was actually a good month, in spite of the absence of Kershaw, as they managed to go 15-11 and trimmed 5 1/2 games from the Giants' lead, as the team from San Francisco struggled badly after the All-Star break. They then faced a decision about what to do at the trading deadline, especially after Norris went down with a back injury on July 31st after pitching creditably for a month. They did make one significant trade, acquiring P Rich Hill and OF Josh Reddick from the oakland Athletics for three pitching prospects, and also flipping P Mike Bolsinger to the Toronto Blue Jays for P Jesse Chavez. The upshot of those deals was that RF Yasiel Puig who had never really gotten on track all season, was sent to the minors, while questions about the starting rotation remained.
The Dodgers continued to gain ground on San Francisco in the first half of August, even though they lost Bud Norris to an injury, had to place Brandon McCarthy on the DL, and saw his replacement, Brett Anderson, pitch only one inning before heading back to the infirmary. On August 16th, a 15-5 win against the Philadelphia Phillies in which 2B Chase Utley homered twice, including a grand slam, against his former team, saw the Dodgers claim sole possession of first place for the first time since May 10th. However, that did not mean the injuries stopped. On August 23rd, they placed Anderson and Scott Kazmir on the DL upping the total of players who had sojourned there during the season to 27, tying the major league record set by the 2012 Boston Red Sox.
Awards and Honors
- All-Stars: Kenley Jansen, Clayton Kershaw and Corey Seager
- NL Rookie of the Year Award: Corey Seager
- Trevor Hoffman Award: Kenley Jansen
- NL Silver Slugger Award: Corey Seager (SS)
- 2016 Topps All-Star Rookie Team: Kenta Maeda (RhP), Corey Seager (SS) and Julio Urias (LhP)
- NL Manager of the Year Award: Dave Roberts
- Ken Gurnick: "A-Gon confident LA will win NL West again: First baseman not fazed by offseason moves of D-backs", mlb.com, February 18, 2016. 
- Ken Gurnick: "Dodgers' banner '16 falls just short of goal", mlb.com, October 23, 2016. 
- Ken Gurnick: "Career years, comebacks highlight Dodgers' clutch '16: Seager, Kershaw, Jansen deliver in Scully's final season as broadcaster", mlb.com, December 28, 2016. 
- Gabe Lacques: "Real magic men for Dodgers bury mistakes in deep pockets", USA Today Sports, June 6, 2016. 
- Gabe Lacques: "Injuries force Dodgers to evaluate what they must do", USA Today Sports, August 1, 2016. 
- Bob Nightengale: "Dodgers in panic mode with loss of Clayton Kershaw to DL", USA Today Sports, June 30, 2016. 
- Jorge L. Ortiz: "The big-bucks Dodgers' new reality: 'It's not always positive or flowery'", USA Today Sports, February 28, 2016. 
- Jorge L. Ortiz: "NL West a two-team race again as Giants, Dodgers load up at trade deadline", USA Today Sports, August 1, 2016. 
- Tracy Ringolsby: "Dodgers hurting as season approaches: Team could open 2016 with 8-10 players on DL", mlb.com, March 27, 2016. 
- Mark Whicker: "How are the Dodgers contending without Clayton Kershaw?", USA Today Sports August 19, 2016.