I'm not going to dissect the Dodgers' season. Everyone who cares knows what happened. I get bored writing about that anyway. Instead, here is the rundown of the Player of the Game that I kept all season:
1. Andre Ethier - 12
2. Clayton Kershaw - 10
3. Casey Blake - 7
4. Chad Billingsley - 6
5. Hideki Kuroda - 6
6. John Ely - 5
7. Matt Kemp - 5
8. Rafael Furcal - 4
9. Ted Lilly - 4
10. James Loney - 4
11. Manny Ramirez - 4
12. Vicente Padilla - 3
13. A.J. Ellis - 2
14. Rod Barajas - 1
15. Rafael Belliard - 1
16. Jamey Carroll - 1
17. Blake DeWitt - 1
18. Jay Gibbons - 1
19. Russell Martin - 1
20. Scott Podsednik - 1
21. Travis Schlicting - 1
Last year, Matt Kemp had the most selections with 12. He dropped down to 5 this season. I have no doubt he'll be back at the top next year.
If one person unseats him it will be this guy:
The Dodgers' Most Valuable Pitcher of the season. Clayton Kershaw may have finished second in the Player of the Day tally, but I believe he was the Dodgers' MVP for the year. He seemed to be the only member of the pitching staff who could get out of his own way. And if it wasn't for the pathetic bullpen, Kershaw would have had a few more wins.
The Dodgers' Most Valuable Hitter is Andre Ethier. His batting practice injury sabotaged what would have been a monster season. But he still received more Player of the Day votes than anyone else.
I'm surprised that Casey Blake received the third most Player of the Day totals. The rest of the list is an embarrassment. John Ely with as many PODs as Kemp. Ted Lilly recording more PODs in a month than some hitters who had been around all season. Russell Martin with a single POD, lumped in with relievers, backups and guys no longer on the team.
All in all, not a good season. And I'd really rather not talk about it anymore. The Player of the Day feature on the sidebar has disappeared and I will never speak of this season again.
Except for this bit of hopeful research:
The only other time the Dodgers finished 80-82 in a season was 1964.
The following year, the Dodgers were World Champions again.
Hey, it sounds ridiculous now. But come March, it'll sound pretty good.