There was a lot of talk in the off-season about the
It's just that neither was really the center of what the Dodgers were trying to build around – starting pitching.
It's the rotation that could separate the Dodgers from other contenders, and what is now beginning to step up big.
Their rotation is healthy for the first time this season and is looking formidable, plus it still could get back
“It’s a good feeling to know we can kind of do this every day,” Manager
Kershaw and Greinke were expected to be the rotation aces, with Ryu the third starter,
Only Beckett (3-1, 2.43 earned-run average) is hinting at becoming again a top-tier starter. Haren is the fifth starter and is 5-3 with a 3.16 ERA. That's a pretty solid one-through-five rotation.
“They’ve been great all year, keeping us in games, giving us chances to win,” infielder
Not many teams can get consecutive games like the Dodgers just received from Beckett and Ryu, and then follow with Greinke and Kershaw.
"It's a good feeling," Mattingly said. "I think it gives us confidence as a ballclub that this is what we've been built for, to be able to pitch."
It also helps to explain the Dodgers’ recent emphasis on defense, and why they feel they can no longer wait for
"I know we were trying, but it was just costing us too much," Mattingly said. "I know it's not sexy to play good defense. Nobody talks about it very much.