Just a quick thought today, since I’m quite busy but I can’t stand staring at the Angels game recap on the front page any longer: things can only go up from here. We’ve talked a lot about how the offense isn’t that great, about how James Loney, Juan Uribe, & Adam Kennedy are black holes at the plate, about how Dee Gordon keeps showing that he’s generally not ready around flashes of brilliance, about how Juan Rivera is not anywhere near as good as his reputation suggest, and about how Bobby Abreu, Jerry Hairston, Elian Herrera, and yes, even A.J. Ellis should never have been expected to keep up the fantastic starts they brought to the Dodgers. That’s all true. There’s a lot of problems on this team, and no easy fixes.
There is this, though:
Just look at that June swoon. That .608 OPS means that over the course of the month, the entire offense has been hitting like Kennedy has all season (.616.) As I’ve been saying all along, this team was probably never as good as they showed in the first two months – and if there’s a better example of “the balls just stopped falling in” than that May BABIP, I’ve yet to find it – but nor do I believe that they’re as bad as they’ve been showing in June. They just can’t be.
The real question is, “how much longer will this last?” Matt Kemp will be back, as will Mark Ellis. You have to believe that trades are coming, and the guys who are here – some, mind you, not all – will get back to hitting.
It’s that, or go with the argument – incredibly unpopular, I’ll admit – that this team isn’t really built to be a champion in 2012 and shouldn’t be trying to “go for it”. I think there’s a lot of validity to that, but given that they had the best record in baseball just a few days ago and are still in first place with a 75% or so chance to make the playoffs, I’m not exactly looking to throw in the towel on the season just yet.
This team is going to hit again. It’s just a question of when, and who’s wearing the uniform.