Dodgers will make playoffs without question, if….

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The Los Angeles Dodgers continued their torrid start with a sweep of the talented Washington Nationals on Sunday and are tied only with the Texas Rangers for the best record in the majors (16-6).

Hot starts in Chavez Ravine are not uncommon. The Los Angeles Dodger teams of the last decade have posted some of the best Aprils and Mays in franchise history, only to succumb to reality down the stretch. Strong pitching and suspect hitting have always been the Dodgers calling card.

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Between the twenty-one championship-less seasons of 1990-2011, the Dodgers have finished in the major’s top ten for team earned run average (ERA) a staggering nineteen times while in the same period finishing in top ten for team runs scored in the major’s only twice.

The 2012 season has begun with the Dodgers once again in the top ten for team ERA (8th) and outside the top ten for the majors in runs scored (16th). This season will be different, if the Dodgers can keep their run productivity towards the middle of the pack, their elite pitching will carry them to a playoff berth without question. Outfielder Matt Kemp has been on fire and last year he proved that he could carry a sub-par offense to success. If highly regarding team president Stan Kasten and general manager Ned Coletti can concoct a midseason trade for another bat to add to Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp, look for Los Angeles to make a run at the championship.

With the McCourt era still fresh in their minds, Dodger fans have quickly been reminded that the Blue Crew does indeed have playoff talent that has now been backed with the financial stability of a responsible ownership group. The Dodgers success has returned, and its fans with it.

Eric Eulau is a MLB writer for the Sports Blitz.  He can be contacted

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