When the NLDS starts Thursday between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Atlanta Braves, the Dodgers will be missing one key member of their dominant lineup; that man is Matt Kemp. However, the Dodgers shouldn’t worry all that much about it because they can still beat the Braves without him. Kemp only played in 73 games this year due to injuries, and in those 73 games the Dodgers went 37-36. That means without Kemp, the Dodgers managed a 55-34 record. This clearly shows that Kemp wasn’t a big factor for the Dodgers when on the field, and the Dodgers are a deeper team than given credit for.
The Dodgers have been able to use the trio of Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier and Yasiel Puig from left to right in the outfield and managed just fine. Ethier has been dealing with ankle problems, but he is very capable for holding his own both in the field and at the plate. This goes without mentioning how the quietly dominant Adrian Gonzalez and the resurgence of Hanley Ramirez have helped the offense quite a bit. Juan Uribe has filled in at third base this year surprisingly nicely, and the two Ellis guys are capable of getting a clutch hit here and there for the team.
With Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke starting Games 1 and 2 of the series, if they can both get wins for the Dodgers and get them a 2-0 lead over the Braves then the Dodgers should sail to victory and the series will be over before the loss of Kemp even comes into the discussion.