But that’s about to change.
Once again it’s going to be fun to be a Dodger fan, as former owner Frank McCourt’s deal has become official, transferring the team to the group headlined by Magic Johnson, which should be all but make this an official holiday for fans to celebrate! A Los Angeles Lakers legend is about to own the city’s most prestige franchise, does it get any better than that? Let the new era began!
The Dodgers are off to a 16-6 start and have the best record in the National League. Could this somehow be the start of a sort of “Magic effect”. A team that was picked by no one at the start of the season to win anything, has played the best baseball Los Angeles has seen in quite some time. Matt Kemp is playing at a level that most people would call “freakish,” setting paces to do things that have never been done, and giving Dodger fans the privilege to see something special every night.
The best thing about it is that Dodger fans will be able to see this guy for the next eight years, thanks to the his new $160 million contract extension he signed before the season. Clayton Kershaw, the other Dodger leading the team into the new era is already mentioned amongst the legendary pitchers donning a Dodger uniform since moving to Los Angeles, joining the ranks of Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale, Don Sutton, Orel Hershiser, and Fernando Valenzuela. Already Kershaw has a Cy Young Award at only 24 years old, solidifying a claim that he could be the next legendary Dodger pitcher. As it is, the name Clayton Kershaw has legendary written all over it.
Many people may have been against the signing of Don Mattingly as the Dodgers manager last season. Mattingly is actually the perfect guy for the job, little do those people know. He may have been a career Yankee but now bleeds Dodger Blue. Since managing the Dodgers, he has brought up on numerous occasions how important it is to play the “Dodger way,” showing that he is completely on board to bringing the Dodgers back to what they used to be: the greatest franchise in all of sports.
It isn’t easy coming in as a first year manager with an owner who isn’t committed to winning, or willing to spend money on everything except improving the ballclub. The Dodgers could have ended last season well below .500 with several distractions on and off of the field, however “Donnie Baseball” kept the team focused and ready to play day-in and day-out. He might not have gotten this team to the playoffs, but they played hard from the first game of the season to the very last. In the game today a manager must have the respect of his players, something exactly what Mattingly has. It means a lot when you have a player’s manager running your team.
Look at the Texas Rangers, who have been in the World Series the last two seasons. Their manager Ron Washington is a player’s manager, which has a lot to do with the Rangers’ success. If you have a manager who the players love playing for, you can go a long way in this league. As long as Don Mattingly is the manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers, the players will put everything on the line for him on any given night.
Since Frank McCourt sold the team about a month ago, you can already see how different of a team this is. They are actually being credited for their play on the field, not about how their owner keeps bringing them down. This has a lot to do with the comfort of knowing that they have an owner who can actually write their checks.
Magic Johnson was leading the Lakers to championships in the 80’s, when the Dodgers owned the city of Los Angeles. He knows how important this team is to the city and will do everything possible to put the Dodgers back on top. The Dodgers fans are in great hands as the start of a new era in Los Angeles begins.
Is there a better group to start with? Not even close, as Matt Kemp, Clayton Kershaw, Don Mattingly, and Vin Scully lead the way. The next time you hear the legendary Vin Scully say “It’s time for Dodger baseball” it will mean more than it ever has before. So Dodgers fans need to hold their heads high and get ready for a future that looks brighter than ever!