Los Angeles Dodgers getting a much-needed break from NL West

Jake Roth-USA Today Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers take a much-needed break today after losing to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday, extending their losing streak to a season-long unlucky seven games.

The Dodgers need a day off more than utility man Luis Cruz (.090 batting average) needs a hit. That’s saying a lot.

The bad news is they have to go to sleep another night without a win in their pockets. The good news is the upcoming schedule for Don Mattingly’s club strays away from the National League West, a division the Dodgers (13-20) have gone an embarrassing 5-16 against this season.

During those games, they have been outscored 106-62. To top off the mediocrity, they are 2-10 at home against their NL West foes.

Every team in the NL West has swept the Dodgers this season except the Colorado Rockies, who took two of three from them last week. Yes, even the San Diego Padres swept them. Losing against division rivals is not exactly a recipe for winning a pennant.

Horace Greeley, an 1800s newspaper man once coined the phrase, “Go West, young man.” The Dodgers are saying, “Let’s get the heck outta the West now.”

If the Dodgers want to neutralize anything, they are going to have to get going now. They have a chance to do that by avoiding the NL West for the next few weeks. Check the schedule — the Dodgers’ next 19 games are against teams not in their division. It won’t be an easy road, though. During that stretch, they face a trio of playoff-caliber teams in the Washington NationalsAtlanta Braves and St. Louis Cardinals.

But the pressure of playing away from the division could help the injury-depleted Dodgers. On tap first is the lowly Miami Marlins who, believe it or not, are playing just as badly as the Dodgers. A sweep against them at Dodgers Stadium would set the tone nicely, and by Memorial Day, if the Dodgers are back to .500, they could be okay headed into the summer.

Matthew Muench writes about the Los Angeles Dodgers for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewMuench

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