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By Pedro MouraFOX Sports MLB Writer

The first half of 2022 demonstrated, in detail, the extent of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ advantage over their National League peers.

Over half of this season, their point differential is more than double that of any of their competitors. The only team close to them is, of course, the New York Yankees, who are running away with the sport’s most talented division.

Part of the story is the collapse of last season’s biggest surprise, the San Francisco Giants. They are now far enough behind the Dodgers to make a return to the National League West almost inconceivable in the second half. The Padres, eight games behind after playing Sunday and soon to host Fernando Tatis Jr., remain a threat. But the Dodgers don’t have to fear the Giants like they did a year ago.

A bigger part of the Dodgers’ history, in the absence of long-awaited ace Walker Buehler and others, is the sudden development of some unexpected pitchers into top quality starters. The Dodgers have long been fond of Tony Gonsolin. In fact, they enjoyed him longer than any other team, considering they found him shortly after he was undrafted in 2015 and offered him a chance to start his professional career. on the spot.

He was an outfielder at the time and only a part-time reliever. They saw his athleticism and potential early on, but even they didn’t see him as the kind of starting pitcher who could consistently work deep in games.

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This season, that has changed out of necessity. Since Clayton Kershaw went on the disabled list in mid-May, Gonsolin has averaged 90 pitches and over six innings in 10 starts. Not once in 2021 have the Dodgers let him reach that pitch count. Not once in 2020 have they allowed him to exceed that number of innings.

At 28, Gonsolin has become the kind of pitcher who could start a postseason game — not a first game, like he did in 2020. His 11-0 record and 1 ERA, 62 reflect this. Gonsolin started the season splitting the debut with left-hander Tyler Anderson in what amounted to a rare piggyback arrangement. This also ended when the injuries added up.

Anderson was a solid starter himself, almost All-Star caliber. If he’s the Dodgers’ fourth starter in the National League Divisional Series, that shouldn’t be a problem. Anderson is a veteran journeyman who signed after Saint Patrick’s Day.

It’s kind of an unconventional and unexpected success the Dodgers are having in 2022.

Look at their situation this way. Gonsolin, Anderson, Julio Urías and lately Kershaw have all been effective this season. Buehler remains closed due to flexor strain and surgery to remove a bone spur from his elbow, but could return in September. Dustin May is on track to return from Tommy John surgery in August 2021. If any of those pitchers reappear at or near their past high, the Dodgers will have a rotation to compete with San Diego’s deep starting lineup.

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Consider their situation this way as well. It is traditional for the team hosting the All-Star Game to send its best power hitter to the Home Run Derby. Who will represent the Dodgers in this competition next week at Dodger Stadium?

Mookie Betts, starting in the All-Star Game, leads the team in home runs, but he’s not a traditional power hitter. He has also recently recovered from a major injury. Trea Turner, starting the game at shortstop, is even less of a power hitter and told reporters he wouldn’t participate.

Freddie Freeman tried this before, and it didn’t go well. Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy have done it before, but their stat lines this season aren’t exactly impressive.

Will Smith might make the most sense. The Dodgers’ SportsNet L.A. broadcast reported on Saturday that he was ready to participate. He’s an elite hitter for a catcher, but he’s never topped 25 homers in a season and isn’t in a position to do so in 2022.

Again, it’s kind of an unconventional and unexpected success for the Dodgers. Betts, Turner and Freeman have reached their career standards. Former top prospect Gavin Lux is restoring what his career standards could be. But so many others – namely Bellinger, Muncy and Justin Turner – struggled to even approach expectations.

Due to an injury to Chris Taylor, the Dodgers are currently in a squad with journeymen Jake Lamb and Trayce Thompson in left field. Neither player was on the 40-man list three weeks ago. Not that it mattered. The two combined for four homers and an OPS over 1,000 in their first 66 plate appearances.

Yes, the Dodgers would like a few of their struggling stars to get back into shape before October. But they are far ahead in the division, and they will be well represented at the All-Star Game.

Pedro Moura is the national baseball writer for FOX Sports. He previously covered the Dodgers for three seasons for The Athletic and, before that, the Angels and Dodgers for five seasons for the Orange County Register and L.A. Times. Earlier, he covered his alma mater, USC, for The son of Brazilian immigrants, he grew up in suburban southern California. His first book, “How to Beat a Broken Game,” came out this spring. Follow him on Twitter @pedramoura.

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Who is the best Dodger player?

Snider is the Dodgers’ all-time leader among positional players in fWAR (63.4), while also leading the franchise in offensive warfare (68. To see also : Is Season 2 of The Terminal List happening on Prime Video?.2), homers (389), runs produced (1271) and extra hits (814). Snider made seven All-Star teams as a Dodger and is one of the greatest center backs in MLB history. Snider’s number

Who is the LA Dodgers star player?

Who is the best Dodger pitcher of all time?

Clayton Kershaw is the Dodgers’ greatest pitcher of all time.

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Who has the longest baseball career?

Nolan Ryan, 27 seasons By today’s standards, Nolan Ryan’s 27 major league seasons are nothing short of miraculous. He has the longest career in MLB and did so as a power pitcher who regularly threw over 100 mph at the height of his career.

Who is the longest person to play baseball? Leroy “Satchel” Paige holds the record for oldest Major League Baseball player. Paige played his last professional game when he was nearly 60 years old.

Whats wrong with Julio Urías eyes?

Urías underwent three surgeries on his left eye during his youth to remove a benign lump. As a result, his left eye is nearly closed, but he is able to see through it.

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Who is the most famous Dodgers player?

In terms of impact on baseball as a sport, Jackie Robinson is the big winner in the top spot. It is undeniably true. On the field, however, he put together a formidable 10-year career narrowly overshadowed by a Hall of Fame pitcher.

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