The San Diego Padres have taken control of the National League West Division, and are currently on an impressive 9 win streak. With a team that is led by a young and exciting lineup, there is no reason that the team can’t extend this winning streak.

Looks like the Dodgers are really starting to pull away from the Padres in the NL West, as L.A. has taken 3 of 4 from San Diego by a combined score of 35-16. L.A. has won 9 of its last 10 games, now holding a 1 1/2 game lead over San Diego in the standings.

The Los Angeles Dodgers enter the 2021 Major League Baseball season as the defending World Series champions. The San Diego Padres bought every star player they could get last season. That was before young star Fernando Tatis Jr. signed a big contract in February. The two Southern California rivals were expected to battle to the end for the National League West title. But that’s not how it started. The Padres stumbled a bit early in the season and their record was just 10-10. After a 13-2 start to the season, Los Angeles lost 14 of its next 18 games before recovering. The San Francisco Giants surprised with a fast start, but the Padres and Dodgers won the division. But will any of them be able to breathe a little?

San Diego Padres end perfect season at home and can’t gain momentum

. COMPARED TO: Padres give everything they have for first world championship in franchise history. Tatis had six RBIs and two home runs to lead the San Diego Padres to a 9-2 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Sunday, ending a three-game hitting streak. It also interrupted a 9-0 home win for the Padres, who have won 12 of their last 13. You’re the head of the division now. But that lead is only one game, despite recent successes. That’s because the Los Angeles Dodgers win almost as often. San Francisco’s Julio Urias on Sunday became the Dodgers’ first 3-RBI pitcher since 2014. Los Angeles’ 11-5 victory interrupted a three-game winning streak against the Giants after the Arizona Diamondbacks won four games earlier in the week. The Dodgers have won seven consecutive and 11 of their last 12 games and are just one game behind the Padres. San Francisco is two games behind San Diego in the lead of the NL West after winning three games last weekend.

Los Angeles Dodgers continue to strengthen their ranks

. COMPARED TO: Jackie Robinson was not the last Dodgers player to wear the number 42. The Los Angeles Dodgers posted a stunning 43-17 record in the lockout-shortened 2020 season, and they have the star power to carry them through the postseason. Los Angeles gets a big return from first baseman Max Muncy, who celebrated his 10th birthday Sunday. He hit a home run for the team. Former American League MVP Mookie Betts is hitting just .258 with five home runs. He was sidelined Sunday with a sore shoulder. The Dodgers just signed Albert Pujols after releasing him on the 17th. May had left the Los Angeles Angels. Pujols, 41, gives Los Angeles a right-handed hitter off the bench and a first baseman to back Muncy up against troublesome lefties. Pujols has gone 5-for-19 with a homer and five RBIs since joining the Dodgers. The Angels fired him after he hit just .198/.250/.372 in 92 innings pitched. Trevor Bauer, the 2020 Cy Young title winner, justified the investment with a 1.98 ERA and 88 strikeouts in 63.2 innings in 10 starts. Los Angeles didn’t have it easy when pitcher Dustin May needed Tommy John surgery earlier this month after tearing ligaments in his elbow.

Padres and Dodgers fight to stay in Wild Card raceLottery

word-image-3828 word-image-9438 Fernando Tatis Jr. of the San Diego Padres reacts to a hit for Austin Barnes of the Los Angeles Dodgers. | Harry Howe/Getty Images COMPARED TO: Pitcher with a 3-2 career record receives a portion of Fernando Tatis’salary. The San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers are on a roll, but only one of them can win the West. The other will probably host the Wild Card game. San Diego can currently win 103 games and Los Angeles 100 games. If both teams maintain their triple-digit win streak, the team that ranks second becomes only the fifth team in the divisional era (since 1969) to finish second with as many wins. The last time this happened was in 2018, when the New York Yankees finished eight games behind the eventual World Series champion Boston Red Sox with a 100-62 record. In 2001, the Oakland A’s won 102 games, beating the Mariners by 14 games. The best second-place team in the divisional era played in 1993, when the Giants finished 103-59 and missed the playoffs entirely. The Atlanta Braves had 104 wins in their final season, when only the division champion went to the postseason. The first division winner with 100 wins was the Baltimore Orioles in 1980, who were 100-62 and three games behind the Yankees when the dust settled. Before the advent of the divisions, six teams had won at least 100 games and finished second in the standings, the last in 1962 when the Giants and Dodgers each won 101 games and a tiebreaker was played. The wildcard match is a toss-up. But it looks like the San Diego Padres or Los Angeles Dodgers will have to take that route in the postseason. stats courtesy of Baseball Reference.

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