At the beginning of July, the Dodgers were in last place in their division and had been labeled the biggest disappointment in baseball. But on Thursday night, the L.A. Dodgers completed one of the best turnarounds in MLB history and clinched the NL West division title with a 7-6 victory over the Diamondbacks on the road in Arizona.
The Dodgers’ unlikely comeback will most likely be traced back to the Yasiel Puig’s insertion to the underachieving, yet talent-rich lineup. Puig hit .436 in the month of June with 44 hits, which are both records for a player’s first month in the MLB.
Puig’s spark seemed to ignite the dormant Dodgers’ all star lineup — from June 22 to August 23, the Dodgers went 46-10. Magic Johnson and the Dodgers’ ownership no longer looked foolish for having the second highest payroll in baseball.
After three months of timely hitting, great pitching, and some luck, the Dodgers found themselves on the top of the division and MLB power rankings. Now, they are only the fourth team in MLB history to win their division after being in last place after July 1st.
It’s been a long road for these Dodgers, so after they celebrated their division title on the pitcher’s mound and finished all the champagne in the locker room, they returned to the field for an impromptu pool party.
In typical Los Angeles fashion, many of the Dodgers players scaled the right centerfield fence and splashed around in the Diamondbacks’ famed outfield pool.
The Diamondbacks players didn’t quite take too kindly to their celebration. Willie Bloomquist told USA Today: “I’ll give credit where credit’s due. They won the division, so congratulations to them. I would expect someone to act with a little more class. I highly doubt the New York Yankees would do something like that.”
The controversy over whether not the pool party was “classless” has already become fodder for sports radio and ESPN. But no matter how you spin the story, the L.A. Dodgers are your N.L. West champions, so if they want to blare Randy Newman and go swimming with their clothes on I’d like to see you stop them.