In a season full of highs and lows, the Los Angeles Dodgers are on cloud nine.
Completing their remarkable turnaround, the Dodgers are winners of the National League West division and became the first team to clinch a spot in the 2013 playoffs with a 7-6 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday afternoon.
Hanley Ramirez once again led the charge, going 4-for-5 with two home runs and four RBIs. After Ramirez homered the Dodgers to a three run lead in the top of the third inning, Diamondback bats roughed up Ricky Nolasco to the tune of six runs in the bottom half of the third.
The Dodgers would slowly chip away at the Diamondbacks’ lead before A.J. Ellis’ go-ahead solo home run in the eighth inning provided them with a lead that was never relinquished.
Reverting back to form, Dodger relievers Brandon League, J.P. Howell, Brian Wilson, and Kenley Jansen blanked Diamondback bats, pitching four scoreless innings while allowing only one hit.
Choosing to ignore the request from the Diamondbacks that should the Dodgers clinch in Arizona, their celebration would not be held on the field, the Boys in Blue rushed onto the diamond after the final out was recorded.
The celebration moved into the visitor’s clubhouse complete with champagne and dancing; Yasiel Puig earning the honor for best moves.
Not content with restricting themselves to the clubhouse, a group of players headed out to the swimming pool in right field to keep the celebration going.
It was a rather brazen move that drew the ire of Diamondback players and President and CEO, Derrick Hall.
In a statement to the Arizona Republic, Hall said, “I could call it disrespectful and classless, but they don’t have a beautiful pool at their old park and must have really wanted to see what one was like.”
Hall must not be aware of the history and prestige Dodger Stadium holds, which Chase Field is no where near possessing, and he comes across as a disgruntled front office official who is late in realizing his team’s season has long been over.
The Dodgers primary concern moving forward is presumably getting key players such as Ramirez, Matt Kemp, and Andre Ethier healthy for the playoff push that the team worked so hard to earn.
As it stands, the Dodgers won’t play another meaningful game until October 3.