Fans of the Los Angeles Dodgers have many things to be excited about during the 2013 season. The team figures to be a favorite to compete for a trip to the postseason in the National League.
Let’s review the top 10 things I am looking forward to as a fan of the Dodgers this season:
10. Magic Johnson
Magic is a Los Angeles legend. It has been great to see him as the face of the Dodgers’ ownership group, promoting the team and promoting expectations for the 2013 season. Here’s hoping Magic gets to raise as many World Series trophies as he did NBA championship trophies.
9. No Frank McCourt
No talk of bankruptcy. No talk of florists and hair appointments. No talk of multiple multi-million dollar homes. No Frank McCourt will be a wonderful thing.
8. Dodger Stadium
Few sports stadiums can match the view, the setting, and the history of Dodger Stadium. There is no better place on the West Coast to watch a weekday evening match-up or a Sunday afternoon ballgame.
7. A Newly Renovated Dodger Stadium
Two words: No troughs! Sure there are other great enhancements and upgrades that fans will get the experience in Chavez Ravine this year: new video boards, new seats, new dining options, but the best new item by far should be the renovations to the restrooms, which have been crowded and inadequate for as long as I have been attending Dodger games (and probably even longer). I cannot wait to see and experience the new upgrades throughout the stadium.
6. Two Series Versus the New York Yankees
The Dodgers play home-and-home series against the Yankees this season. Seeing these two historic franchises play twice as part of the expanded interleague schedule will be a treat.
5. Clayton Kershaw
Clayton Kershaw is the ace of the Dodgers’ starting rotation and a true joy watch perform. Kershaw already has one Cy Young Award to his credit. After a great 2012 season that saw him post a 2.53 earned run average, 229 strikeouts, and 14 wins, I am looking for a repeat performance in 2013. Perhaps even another Cy Young Award.
4. Zack Greinke
Greinke was the big offseason acquisition for the Dodgers, signing what was at the time, the largest contract ever given to a right-handed pitcher. Greinke gives the Dodgers a strong number two starter to slot behind Kershaw. A strong season from Greinke would give the Dodgers a formidable one-two combination at the top of their starting rotation.
3. Matt Kemp
Recently signed to an eight-year, $160 million contract extension in 2012, Kemp is a gifted ballplayer who has served as the face of franchise for the past few seasons. I am going to thoroughly enjoy watching him this year. Hopefully for Dodger fans, we’ll see a return to his performance level from 2011 when he hit .324, crushed 39 homers, and stole 40 bases. A 40 homer, 40 steal season could be possible if he stays healthy this season.
2. The Dodgers Have a Legitimate Chance at Reaching the Postseason
With the highest projected payroll in baseball, the Dodgers have significantly upgraded their roster compared to the start of the 2012 season. After falling short of the playoffs in 2012, the Dodgers appear to be ready to contend for a postseason berth in 2013, and I think the team should be considered as a serious contender for a trip to the World Series.
1. Vin Scully
The 85-year-old broadcaster is a true legend. Nothing compares to spending a warm summer evening listening to Scully describe a Dodger game and share stories about each player. Enough said.
Will Delaux is a life-long resident of Southern California and an avid Dodger fan.
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