Besides having the same thoughts myself occasionally, I have heard some talk, here and there, of comparisons between this team and the 2003 team. After all, there are striking similarities: both have horrific offenses, but helped by tremendous pitching. So, as I sit here bored waiting for the game to start, I thought I’d do a quick and dirty check. Nothing earth shattering, but a quick comparison on how the 2008 offense ranks to the historically awful 2003 offense, through the first half:
Throughout the first half, the 2003 team had a record of 49-44, despite their atrocious offense. Through the first half, the 2003 “offense” put up the following numbers:
.244/.304/.359, 59 HR’s, 328 R, 307 RBI’s, .663 OPS, .279 BABIP, 76 sOPS+
The 2008 team has finished 46-49 and their offense throughout the first half:
.253/.321/.373, 65 HR’s, 390 R, 361 RBI’s, .694 OPS, .292 BABIP, 88 sOPS+
So, breath a sigh of relief. Our offense sucks, but not 2003 type of crapulence! Granted, the difference isn’t extraordinary, but still a bit better.
However, what balances it out is the incredible pitching from that year. While we have had awesome pitching this year, this is where the 2003 team has the advantage:
2003 Overall Pitching Through The First Half:
49-44, 3.07 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 285 ER, 294 BB, 758 K, 34 SV.
2008 Overall Pitching Through The First Half:
46-49, 3.64 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 343 ER, 299 BB, 705 K, 18 SV.
So, the 2008 team has better hitting, but the 2003 team has better pitching. Nonetheless, neither team’s strength is offense and both have heavily relied on their pitching. Having said that, it’s hard to believe that, even with our great pitching this year, the pitching from 2003 was still a bit better. The Nomo/Brown duo was pretty sick that year, while the Penny/Lowe duo has been rather, well… sickening, mostly due to Penny.
As if it hasn’t been said before, in order for the Dodgers to do anything, they’re going to have to hit, lest they suffer the same fate as the 2003 team. Luckily they’re in a horrible division (as opposed to the 2003 Giants, who won 100 games that year) and have the potential to hit better as the kids grow and mature (as opposed to relying on, say, Jeremy Burnitz), so, as we begin the second half, let’s hope Donny Baseball can work his magic and help turn the tide a little bit.