Dave Roberts: ‘Very Important’ Dodgers Win Games Against Inferior Teams

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

The Los Angeles Dodgers recently faced the Pittsburgh Pirates and have a weekend series with the Colorado Rockies, but otherwise are in a stretch of primarily playing opponents who are over .500 and in the postseason hunt.

L.A. swept Pittsburgh and outscored them 15-4 in the three-game series en route to improving to an impressive 42-18 against teams below .500 this season. “It’s very important,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of winning games against inferior opponents.

“That’s what makes the Major League Baseball season so unique, is you play 162 (games) and it’s a grind. Not letting down against lesser opponents, or whatever you want to call it, is important.

“You’ve still got to beat those teams above .500, but the goal is to win more games in the regular season than teams in your division. We’ve done a pretty good job at that, and we’ve just got to keep winning against whoever we play.”

The Dodgers routinely playing lesser teams this year is a byproduct of the National League West being home to two of the worst teams in baseball in the Rockies (57-68) and Arizona Diamondbacks (42-85).

L.A. has gone a combined 21-5 against those teams in addition to posting a perfect 13-0 record against the Pirates (46-80) and Washington Nationals (54-70).

By comparison, the Dodgers are just 28-29 against teams over .500 this season. The Dodgers have enjoyed their most success against the top three teams in the NL East, sporting a combined 8-3 record against the Atlanta Braves, New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies.

Dodgers keeping pace with Giants

Last week saw the Dodgers finally gain ground on the San Francisco Giants in the NL West standings. L.A. enters play 2.5 games back of first place as teams are headed for a collision course during the first weekend of September.

The three-game series at Oracle Park from Sept. 3-5 represents the final time the Dodgers and Giants will face each other this season. L.A. and San Francisco have split their 16 meetings thus far.

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