Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers set a franchise record with 111 wins during the 2022 season, only to be eliminated by the San Diego Padres in the National League Division Series.
The deflating loss was a precursor to an offseason filled with plenty of roster turnover as the likes of Cody Bellinger, Justin Turner and Trea Turner all signed with different teams.
Despite the changes on this year’s roster, the Dodgers still captured their 10th NL West title in the last 11 seasons and reached the 100-win mark for the fifth time since 2017.
Chris Taylor does not believe last year’s disappointing outcome is still weighing on the minds of his teammates as the Dodgers head into an NLDS matchup with the Arizona Diamondbacks. “I think you can say that every year after you don’t win,” Taylor answered when asked if there is extra motivation this October because of the 2022 NLDS.
“I think this is such a new team that we don’t really need any more motivation. I think we have a really good group in here. Everybody is hungry and has the same goal in mind.”
Taylor added that the Dodgers are keeping the same approach as previous playoff runs and won’t overreact because of last year’s result. “It’s always the same. You’re not going to overthink it,” he began.
“We’re trying to win a ballgame and win a series, so nothing has really changed right now. We’re going to do some intrasquad games, hopefully have the intensity up, be competitive and roll right into the playoff games.”
Taylor acknowledged there is a greater sense of urgency in the postseason, but that the Dodgers’ focus of winning one game at a time won’t change. “Everything is just heightened a little bit,” he said.
“I think for us, we’re still trying to go out there and win a baseball game. So nothing really changes. Obviously, the intensity and energy in the stadium is going to be ticked up a little bit.”
Chris Taylor: 2023 Dodgers ‘a really close group’
In addition to all of the new faces on the Dodgers roster, the team dealt with a plethora of injuries and off-field distractions throughout the 2023 season. Taylor praised his teammates for never losing sight of their ultimate goal.
“I think it’s a really close group,” Taylor said. “We’re close on and off the field, and everybody has that same motivation to win a game and everybody really pulls for each other. I think that attitude is really contagious.”
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