Dodgers
(Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports)

The Dodgers Are Better Than The Padres And It Isn’t Even Close

It seems the Dodgers should be running out of gas. Kershaw and Jansen are slowing down steadily with age and injuries catching up to them. Somehow though, they aren’t. In fact, the current 2021 team is perhaps the best they’ve ever been. Not one team in the entirety of Major League Baseball possesses the depth the Dodgers have whether it’s their lineup or their entire pitching staff. The Dodgers have a neighbor down south that wants to desperately one-up them. The San Diego Padres are trying hard to compete with the Dodgers and a lot of people believe they’re neck and neck as successful franchises. I don’t think so though.

Ever since the San Diego front office called up Shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. and signed Manny Machado, there is a feeling that the Padres are forcing themselves to get on the same level as the Dodgers. Everything about Los Angeles screams success, even their farm system. To compete further with the depth, the Padres called up Jake Cronenworth and splashed more deals like Yu Darvish, Blake Snell, and Mike Clevenger. The Dodgers absolutely intimidate San Diego’s front office living in their heads rent-free. Los Angeles effortlessly has just great players.

Andrew Friedman knows how to wisely spend money and see things in players other general managers like San Diego GM AJ Preller fail to see. Los Angeles has been able grab players like this including Justin Turner, Max Muncy, or Chris Taylor. What these guys have in common where they were let go by their previous teams and found success as Dodgers. San Diego hasn’t been able to come anywhere close to this, instead opting for big deals.

The Padres are wasting their farm system. The Dodgers on the other hand have an endless supply of farmhands. Cody Bellinger, Walker Buehler, Julio Urias, Gavin Lux, Corey Seager, Kenley Jansen, Tony Gonsolin, Victor Gonzalez, Dustin May, and Will Smith are all homegrown. The Dodgers, despite an exceedingly large payroll, didn’t buy their ring whatsoever. Friedman just added pieces that would complement those homegrown players. The chemistry is there and new additions from the minors are also establishing themselves too like Zach McKinstry and Luke Raley.

In the Dodgers’ starting rotation, they have six guys who’d hand out a quality start on any given day. If Clayton Kershaw follows a typical pattern and goes down with a midsummer back injury, you have Julio Urias, Tony Gonsolin, David Price, and many others who’d easily and successfully take his place.

What the Padres have in their rotation is uncertainty. Yu Darvish had a blip of an excellent season last year but really hasn’t been good since his Texas days. Mike Clevinger, as well as Dinelson Lamet, have both dealt with injuries. The only real viable starter is Blake Snell. They have no real backup plans which speak to the depth of the team. Losing Zach Davies was a big blow to them. They also have 36-year-old Mark Melancon who hasn’t really been great since his tenure with Pittsburgh in the mid 2015s. From 2016 to now, he has a 3.45 earned run average as a closer.

San Diego has good pitching. There’s no denying it. But Los Angeles is on another level. Los Angeles knows how to handle big contracts and not to waste their money foolishly. For the Padre’s front office to sign Fernando Tatis Jr to a 14-year, 340 million dollar contract was absolutely without a doubt foolish. There is no question he has talent, but he hasn’t proved it yet. The most games he’s played in a season is only 84. Guess we’ll have to see it if pans out because the Padres are already stuck in contracts with Wil Myers and Eric Hosmer. Get ready for a strong second-place finish for the San Diego team.

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