Walker Buehler returns to former form just in time as Dodgers gear up for October – The Athletic


LOS ANGELES – The Dodgers are not sure yet how next week will unfold and whether they will manage to sneak in to claim their Ninth Division title. All they can do in their remaining five games is simple: win.

But they know they will enter October with at least 101 wins and with their most consistent starter this season, he seems to have turned things around. After a 2-1 win over San Diego on Tuesday night, Walker Buehler is back to being himself, just when the Dodgers need him most.

“The fact that Walker throws baseball like he did tonight,” said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, “makes it even more exciting going forward.”

Buehler has been the club’s go-to starter in big times since his first full season in 2018. This year he has stepped up a gear. He entered the sport’s lead in ERA in September, having organized the kind of end-to-end season he had signed up for. Tuesday marked the first time he crossed the 200 innings threshold in a season, and he did so while maintaining his efficiency. Buehler’s seven white ball innings lowered his ERA to 2.49, a career low and a rating that could very well place him near the top of the Cy Young Award ballots.

He has spent much of this month researching this shining form. The Giants, whom the Dodgers have been chasing since April, knocked him out at Oracle Park. He walked into Coors Field, a park known to inflate the ERA with many pitchers, and got into a fight. Thanks to four starts in September, his ERA was 7.32.

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