Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers have not played their best baseball in June, going 9-11 so far in the month, which included streaks of three and four consecutive losses, along with losing four of their seven series.
However, they seem to have turned things around recently, sweeping the Los Angeles Angels in a two-game set, then taking two out of three from the Houston Astros.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts believes winning four of five games over the past week was important toward getting back on track, particularly with that stretch coming off the heels of being swept by the San Francisco Giants.
“I thought we got some breaks, we made our own breaks, and if you look back from a week ago, we’re in a much better spot,” Roberts said. “It’s always tough to lose the last one but to look back and say you won a series against a good ballclub, and now we’ve got to go into Denver for three.
“I feel we’ve got some momentum and Clayton going on Tuesday. Feel good about that.”
Roberts was most happy with how his pitching staff performed, which was arguably the team’s biggest issue during the rough stretch.
Their relievers combined to throw 28.1 innings with just one run allowed dating back to the start of their series with the Angels, and the staff as a whole posted back-to-back shutouts against their crosstown rivals.
“I think the biggest thing is overall as a pitching staff, we’re doing a pretty good job. I think we’re staying in ballgames and finding ways to win,” Roberts.
Offensively, Roberts still wants to see some more consistency out of the group. The Dodgers scored just seven total runs in their first three wins of the week before following that up with performances of eight and five runs.
“I think for the offense, we get out hot and then we cool down for about five or six innings, and then we turn it back on late,” Roberts noted. “Where I think certainly in Colorado, where there’s a lot of hits and runs to be had, we’ve got to be more consistent offensively.
“Getting (Max) Muncy back on Tuesday, I think will help that out. So that’s something I’m looking forward to.”
The Dodgers are still fourth in MLB with 409 runs scored this season while their pitching staff is the eighth-worst in baseball with a 4.52 ERA.
That has resulted in them holding the third place spot in the National League West behind the Arizona Diamondbacks and Giants, but more than half the season remains for them to get back on track.
Dodgers planning more off days for Miguel Vargas
Miguel Vargas entered the 2023 season locked into the starting second base role for the Dodgers with high expectations surrounding him.
However, the rookie who was known for his hit tool as one of baseball’s top prospects has not produced as expected. In 234 at-bats, Vargas is hitting just .201/.301/.376 with seven home runs, 30 RBI and 32 runs scored.
Vargas has played in 72 of the Dodgers’ 77 games despite his struggles, but Roberts plans to get him some more time off moving forward.
“I think I’m going to be more mindful of trying to give him days off, if need be, to try to get him back on track,” Roberts said. “This is a tough one. Still trying to figure it out.”
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