Every week during the 2017 season, we’ll check in with California’s five MLB teams. Who’s up? Who’s down? Who has the cheapest ticket this week and who will play in the best series? The Golden State is home to the best position player in baseball, the sport’s best pitcher, and the 25 future Mexican leaguers who play for the Padres.
Best Record Last Week: Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, 3-0.
Worst Record Last Week: San Francisco Giants, Anaheim Angels, 1-2.
Best Attendance (cumulative avg.): Los Angeles Dodgers, 44,695.
Worst Attendance (cumulative avg.): Oakland, 18,836.
Huell Howser Memorial ‘Is This Guy Serious!?’ Outstanding Performance Video:
The Dodgers started to look inevitable with their three-game sweep in Miami after the All Star Game. One of the big reasons why is Kenley Jansen, who is leaning into his role as a fireman, as opposed to a straight closer. The big Curacaoan recorded a four-out save on Sunday to pick up the NL West leaders on the back end of one of the longest road trips in baseball, striking out three Marlins in the effort.
Gob Bluth’s Huge Mistake of the Week:
Billy Beane sold too early from the last-place A’s, sending relievers Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson to the Nationals Sunday for a fair haul of prospects, a corpse called Blake Treinen, and payroll help. Listen, we are in trade season, but the A’s were sitting on a gold mine with two cheap, attractive relief arms on the block. One has to believe that with half the American league still chasing a playoff spot, the A’s could have held out for a better trade. Beane is on the hot seat to turn 1B Yonder Alonso and P Sonny Gray into more than a payroll dump.
Cheapest Ticket This Week: $6 Indians at Giants on Monday.
California Series to Watch:
Nationals at Angels (7/18-7/19) is the state’s most crucial series this week. Hell, until the Angels declare themselves, they’re in the spotlight. After going 1-2 against the Rays after the break, Anaheim needs to send signals to GM Billy Eppler and Owner Arte Moreno that they can make a run at an AL wildcard spot. The best way to do that is to play competitively against the newly-upleveled Nats at home. If they can’t notch Ws against playoff-bound teams, now, the Halos braintrust won’t be incentivized to go find another starting arm and first baseman to help the team make a run. There’s no room to falter now.
Athletics: 7/17-7/19 vs. Rays, 7/21-23 @ Mets.
Giants: 7/17-7/19 vs. Indians, 7/20-7/23 vs. Padres.
Dodgers: 7/18-7/19 @ White Sox, 7/20-7/23 vs. Braves.
Angels: 7/18-7/19 vs. Nationals, 7/21-7/23 vs. Red Sox.
Padres: 7/17-7/19 @ Rockies, 7/20-7/23 @ Giants.
Home series in bold.