On the morning of the opener of the
The only toss the Dodgers might have to worry about at this point: Who will toss the ceremonial first pitch at Game 1 of the
The Dodgers have not missed a beat, or a victory, without Seager.
“This team hasn’t relied on one guy the whole season,” third baseman
Depth wins in the regular season, but stars win in October? Don't try telling that to the Dodgers, who had no hits Tuesday from perhaps their three most potent offensive threats — Turner, Cody Bellinger and the injured Seager — and won by five runs.
None of the players that drove in a run — Taylor, oft-injured outfielder Andre Ethier, third-string catcher Kyle Farmer and pitcher
“[Clayton] Kershaw went down, Corey went down, J.T. went down, Cody went down,” closer
"That's what's special about this team. Whoever went down, we just try to pick them up."
In the three games of the division series, Seager batted .273, with one extra-base hit and a .455 slugging percentage.
In the three games they have played in the league championship series, the Dodgers’ shortstops — Taylor and
The sample size is small, but the formula has been so successful that the Dodgers need not junk it for the World Series, even if Seager is available.
In September, before he injured his back but after he reported pain in his elbow, he said throwing caused discomfort but swinging did not. In the World Series, the Dodgers could play three games under
Taylor became the first player in postseason history to hit a home run as a shortstop and center fielder — and he did it in the same series. The Dodgers have used eight leadoff batters this season; Taylor solidified the spot in the second half.
"He's really a spark plug at the top of the lineup," Turner said. "Ever since he got put in that leadoff spot, he's been a game-changer for us."
When he reported to
After Culberson played shortstop in the first two games of the series, Taylor started there in Game 3. To count him as a depth player might not be entirely fair, since he did not come off the bench, or the inactive roster. He simply moved from center field to shortstop for the game.
This is how the Dodgers roll. When Pederson was asked, breathlessly, about the importance of veterans like Chase Utley and
"Everything," Jansen said, "is just going right for us."