My breakdown of game three of the NLDS between the Dodgers and Diamondbacks which originally appeared on DFSR.com
For Monday’s MLB Playoff set of four divisional series games I contributed a breakdown of Game three between the Dodgers and Diamondbacks in Chase Field to lead MLB writer Austyn Varney’s game
by game breakdown of the slate for DFSR.com. Yu Darvish takes on Zack Greinke as the Dodgers look to sweep the series and head to the NLCS for a second straight year. Below is my breakdown.
Dodgers Vs Diamondbacks
With their backs to the wall, the Diamondbacks will turn to former Dodgers ace Zack Greinke to try and give them a little life against his former team. The Diamondbacks right handed ace threw just 3.2 innings in Wednesdays Wildcard showdown with the Rockies on Wednesday, surrendering four runs on six hits and a walk. It was a less than impressive close to the season for Greinke who finished out the campaign allowing 10 runs in 8IP over his final two contests against the Marlins and Royals resepctively, add in the Wildcard appearance and I can’t say Greinke fills me with an abundance of confidence, though there are some points to his favor. He posted a .268 wOBA allowed this season in the second toughest park for pitchers, Chase Field while making significant improvements to his ERA and xFIP over last year. In cash I’ll look elsewhere, but with the motivation of the must win situation while facing his former team for you narrative lovers out there, I can see the case for a GPP play.
The Dodgers will turn to mid-season acquisition Yu Darvish to break out the brooms and complete the sweep of the Diamondbacks on their own field. Darvish was 6-4 on the road this season and posted a 2.44 ERA. This will be Yu’s first start since September 25th when he threw seven shutout innings allowing just two hits to the Padres while striking out nine. Darvish and the Dodgers opened on Sunday night as -115 favorites against a D-Backs team that struck out 23.2% of the time but also posted a .335 wOBA against RHP. I’m not expecting Darvish to come to the hill and mow down the likes of Goldschmidt, and Martinez, but his 10.08 K/9 and 3.65 xFIP this season show despite struggling at times, he has what it takes to get the job done and today is exactly why L.A. made the move for him at the deadline.
Despite two solid arms going on the hill, this game brings no shortage of lumber with it, and as if that isn’t enough, it takes place in Chase Field, the friendliest hitters park of October baseball. If Greinke carries his Septmber struggles with him into this start he could find himeself in trouble early against the likes of rookie Cody Bellinger who finished the season with a .383 wOBA aainst RHP and led the Dodgers with 39 home runs. Justin Turner’s .400 wOBA was the best on the team and Chris Taylor and Corey Seager had the highest BABIP’s (.361 and .352 respectively). The Dodgers will need these guys to bring their best if Yu falls into trouble against the likes of J.D. Martinez, whose .441 ISO against RHP could lead to big things in Chase. He and Paul Goldschmidt both ended the campaign with wOBA’s over .400. Jake Lamb finished the season with the second most home runs on the Arizona roster this year with 30, and if he finds himself back in the lineup, Chris Ianetta is among my top choices for catcher.
Catch the whole article with breakdowns of all four games Here.
Starring: Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Taylor
Director: Nikolaj Arcel
Released: August 4, 2017
“The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.”
The opening line of The Gunslinger, the first book in Stephen King’s eight novel opus The Dark Tower, is referenced in the theatrical release based on the series, but if you have read the books then you need to enter into the film with an open mind. The Dark Tower the movie, while finally bringing the eternal conflict between Roland Deschain, the last gunslinger of Gilead and Walter O’Dim, also known as the man in black to the big screen, is not an adaptation of Volume one, or even an adaptation of the series but more so a mesh of elements from all of the books combined into a new tale about the battle over the fate of the tower.
The Dark Tower stands at the center of everything, it holds all worlds, including our own together, while keeping eternal darkness and evil demonic beings out, the man in black hopes to destroy the tower by using children with special powers. Enter Jake Chambers (Tom Taylor) a young, troubled New Yorker haunted by visions he doesn’t quite understand but that he knows are more than just bad dreams. He uses these visions to find a portal into Mid World, a reality other than our own, in a a time since the world has moved on where he meets and joins up with Roland (Idris Elba). They set out on a journey to find the man in black (Matthew McConaughey) who in turn is hunting for Jake who he feels will be the key to finally bringing down the tower. Eventually the journey crosses back and forth between Mid World, and our own present day New York City until the Gunslinger and his apprentice come face to face with the man in black for an epic showdown.
If you are a fan of King, you will enjoy the many Easter eggs placed throughout the film, Jake’s power is actually “the shine” from one of King’s most famous books/films The Shining, at one point the two set up camp in the woods by what appears to be an abandoned amusement park called Pennywise, the name of the demon from IT, another of King’s books soon getting it’s own theatrical release. There are many other references as well and I’m sure there were even more that I may have missed.
While I have started the book series twice, I have yet to finish it, and recently started again for a third time with the intent that this will be the time I complete the journey, I have made it about halfway through the epic, and what I can say is that the film, while enjoyable has left so much out as the tale from start to finish is more than can be condensed into a two hour film. There is no Susannah, there are no lobstrosities, there is no ka tet. as a fan of the book series, I would love to see it get the treatment it deserves, though for that to happen, I feel it would have to done in the same manner as Game Of Thrones, and get picked up by HBO, Netflix, or the like and release each book over the course of several seasons. That said, I feel those who are unfamiliar with the books will be treated to a fantasy tale combining magic, action, adventure, and more while if a fan of the book goes in with an open mind, they should not walk out disappointed. McConaughey is perfect as the man in black, Elba was a pleasant surprise as the gunslinger, the characters were well represented on the screen and the direction and action was well paced. I have read speculation online that the movie is actually the ninth volume in the series, a continuation of sorts which is an interesting theory, and without dropping any spoilers, the ending does leave open the possibility of a follow up film being made, I just fear the box office returns may close that door which is a shame. If you’re a fan of the books, or just a fan of fantasy, adventure films in general, then The Dark Tower is a journey worth taking.
Have you seen the film? Did you enjoy the review? Please leave your thoughts in the comments.