Welcome Jimmy Bramlett, the long-time LAist sports editor who will cover the Dodgers’ post-season journey here — if he survives.
The Dodgers just completed their most successful regular season in franchise history with 106 wins. They won their seventh consecutive division title, the third-longest streak in MLB history. They are poised to make another deep playoff run. And for L.A. fans, it’s World Series or bust.
So why am I not more excited?
Aside from being dead inside, there is a landfill-sized heap of dread spreading through my being, clogging up any source of naïve optimism I may have for this great team.
One of the most annoying sources of dread has nothing to do with the Dodgers: it’s having to hear how awful the various TV broadcasts are.
From the cloying incompetency of TBS’ star-studded talking heads to armchair critics declaring Fox’s Joe Buck is the antichrist of baseball; it’s going to be more than a month of grown-ups whining and crying about so-and-so announcer obviously being biased against their team.
The bemoaning is enough to make me want to crawl into bed for the next month.
It’s also hard for me to watch my team lose in the postseason.
During the 2017 World Series against the Houston Astros, whenever the Astros had a good inning I found myself changing the channel to break the tension for a little bit. I’d make my way back soon afterward, but it was just too much.
The palpitations and rush of emotions made me a wreck.
And don’t get me started on last year’s Fall Classic. I knew the Dodgers had no shot against the Red Sox, so I didn’t watch any of it. Since I was coming off of being hospitalized for heart failure exactly a year ago, I couldn’t handle watching the inevitable dissection.
But this year should be different, right?
The Dodgers had their best regular-season run, so I should be giddy as hell to watch them dominate their opponents. But I’m utterly ruined.
Watching the bullpen give up inherited runners like candy this season — they were one of the worst teams in the majors in that category — would send me back to looking for travel videos on YouTube.
And then, there’s closer Kenley Jansen who blew eight saves this year, the most in his career. Lord knows if what’s left of my heart can take seeing an Astro or Yankee take him deep for a three-run homer after the Dodgers managed to get a 2-1 lead in the ninth.
Sure, the Dodgers’ pitching overall was one of the best in baseball, but watching the bullpen these last several years has me scarred.
I don’t think I can bear these Dodgers being known through history as the Buffalo Bills of baseball. The Bills made it to four consecutive Super Bowls in the late ’80s and early ’90s only to lose in such ignominious fashion.
No one remembers how good they were to reach those four Super Bowls. They just remember them losing.
I don’t want the Dodgers to become synonymous with losing — we are not the Cubs. But I’ll be here to document this team and the rollercoaster that is being a baseball fan this time of year.
Hopefully, there will be no hospitalizations involved.