There’s A Reason He’s Called ‘Magic’ Johnson
The ‘Magic’ is in L.A., and Mr. Johnson has as much to do with the Dodgers turn around as Don Mattingly and the Dodgers themselves. With 40 games remaining, the Dodgers are in a position to take the National League West.
It was Magic Johnson’s vision (a 4% ownership in the Dodgers at stake), that pushed the Dodgers hierarchy to think outside the box and take a $270 million gamble that brought Adrian Gonzales, Carl Crawford, Nick Punto and Josh Beckett from Boston. Magic Johnson knows all about rolling the dice. He knows the importance of shaking things up and letting the chips fall.
When the Dodgers were playing under 500 baseball, Magic Johnson was cool. Not because he wasn’t concerned, but because staying cool under pressure gives you the winning edge. He knew that his experience with staying cool, and being a 5 time World Champion, was the best way to assist Donnie Baseball (coach Don Mattingly), to keep his players relaxed and focused.
After sweeping the Tampa Bay Rays this past weekend, who by the way, have possibly the best pitching staff in the American League, the Dodgers are a force to be reckoned with.
While Josh Beckett ended up to be a bust, the Dodgers still came out on top with solid pitching. Left-handed Clayton Kershaw is an ace, as is their right-hander Zack Greinke, who they fortuitously picked up from the Angels. Lefty Hyun-Jin Ryu is bringing the heat as well. Brian Wilson (the infamous Blackbeard from the S.F. Giants) will be coming up from the minors as the set-up guy for their go-to closer, Kenley Jansen.
The infield is loose and confident with Hanley Ramirez, the Dodgers short-stop who is one of the best in the National League. Golden Glove Adrian Gonzales is a good as it gets covering first base. The Dodgers have a special magic in their team chemistry, it’s what makes it possible for utility player Nick Punto to go in wherever he may be needed, second-base, short-stop center field.
Matt Kemp is finally coming off the DL and returning to center field, and the young Cuban with the hot bat – Yasiel Puig, is controlling right field.
The Dodgers have been waiting 25 years for a World Series, and with a little bit of Magic, they may not have to wait much longer.