Last season the Los Angeles Dodgers dominated headlines for everything other than baseball.
The team was still at the mercy of now ex-owner Frank McCourt, whose divorce was a literal soap opera and the team took the fall too.
Still, the team put up an 82-79 record thanks to a great second-half of 2011, and finished a respectable third place in the NL West.
The fact that the Dodgers pulled it together and played just shy of .600 baseball after the 2011 All-Star break largely flew under the radar due to the off the field mess.
So, now this leaves the question of whether the Dodgers can carry that stellar second-half surge into 2012 season?
Let’s take a peek…
The Dodgers finally got sold and not just to any old group of rich-guys. The new ownership group, which includes ex-Lakers star and local hero Magic Johnson, paid north of $2 billion dollars to own one of the most historic franchises in sports. This has already boosted ticket sales, as the timing could not have been more perfect and deserved. The Dodgers have suffered under reckless ex-owner Frank McCourt for way to long already, so this can only give the players a boost out of Spring Training.
Not many teams have the current CY Young recipient, and arguably MVP winner both on their rosters. The Dodgers have this luxury with ace Clayton Kershaw and superstar Matt Kemp. Both are young, healthy, play hard and love being wearing the Dodger uniform. It doesn’t get much better than that.
Can the Dodgers finish what they started? After the 2011 All-Star break the Dodgers went 41-28, which flew under the radar as the media had turned their attention completely on McCourt’s nasty divorce battle, after going 41-51 in the first-half.
So, while everyone else had written them off, the team quietly put together a solid effort, and at best hope that continues into 2012. Motivation is something no team can ever have enough of, and playing through adversity is never easy so lets the players can thrive without it too.
Read the rest of 2012 MLB Team Preview: Los Angeles Dodgers
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Post tags: Clayton Kershaw, Dee Gordon, Dodger, Frank McCourt, Hiroki Kuroda, James Loney, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Dodgers, Matt Kemp