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 suddenly lethal ballers who play for the San Diego Padres.
Written by Kyle Magin
Best Record Last Week: San Diego Padres, 5-2
Worst Record Last Week: Oakland Athletics, 0-6
Best Attendance (cumulative avg.): Dodgers, 45,907.
Worst Attendance (cumulative avg.): Oakland, 18,906.
Huell Howser Memorial ‘Is This Guy Serious!?’ Outstanding Performance Video:
Padres starter Jhoulys Chacin spun a gem on Sunday in the Friars’ 6-4 win over the Dodgers, striking out 8 and generally making the boys in blue look silly. Chacin had an ignominious start to his season when the Padres season ticket saleswoman charged with showing me around Petco Park in March told me, excitedly, that the team had named its ace that day. I asked her who that could be, and she stared at her phone for awhile, tried to say Jhoulys, and just passed it to me, in a pink Padres case, to see for myself and look blankly at. He just shut down the best lineup in baseball.
— San Diego Padres (@Padres) September 3, 2017
Gob Bluth’s Huge Mistake of the Week: The Dodgers are going to kick themselves for not getting in on the Justin Verlander sweepstakes. It certainly wasn’t cheap, but for $40 million and a few prospects, they could have brought themselves a clear path through the World Series. Now they potentially would have to see the Astros’ Verlander and Dallas Keuchel four times in a seven-game set, not including any MadBum-style relief appearances. It could come back to bite them.
Cheapest Ticket This Week: $6 for Angels @ A’s Tuesday, 9/5.
California Series to Watch: Angels @ Mariners 9/8-9/10. With their newly retooled lineup including slugger Justin Upton, the Angels travel to Seattle to see if they can diminish the M’s playoff hopes and sustain their own over a weekend series. With so many teams bunched so tightly for the final AL wild card—the Halos are tied with Baltimore at 1.5 games behind Minnesota for the final playoff spot, with the Mariners just another game behind them—these last few weeks should be a delightful bloodbath. Both Seattle and Anaheim have been tooling up in ways large and small and this is the sort of low-rent playoff chase that the extra wild card has made interesting.
Athletics: 9/4-6 vs. Angels, 9/8-10 vs. Astros.
Giants: 9/4-6 @ Rockies, 9/8-10 @ White Sox.
Dodgers: 9/4-6 vs. Diamondbacks, 9/7-10 vs. Rockies.
Angels: 9/4-6 @ Athletics, 9/8-10 @ Mariners.
Padres: 9/4-7 vs. Cardinals, 9/8-10 @ Diamondbacks.
Home series in bold.