It's one of baseball's most memorable lines, uttered in 1951 by Dodgers manager Charlie Dressen: "The Giants is dead." Dressen's ungrammatical epitaph was delivered in early August, after his Brooklyn Dodgers had swept the New York Giants to widen their National League lead to 12 1/2 games.
Of course, by October, it was Dressen and the Dodgers who were dying a thousand deaths, as Bobby Thomson's "shot heard 'round the world" ended a playoff series. Back then, there were no divisions and no wild card slot.
Fast forward to now. The shoe is on the other foot (and the teams are on the other coast). The Giants have just swept the Dodgers and though you won't hear anyone in orange and black say it, let me write it: The Dodgers is dead.
I'm not alone in seeing a lifeless bunch of underachievers wearing Dodger blue. Read T. J. Simers in the Los Angeles Times. Or check out the hilarious (and often vulgar) rants of a hardcore and long-suffering Dodgers fan at DodgerBlues.com.
The just-concluded sweep of L.A. left the Giants 6 1/2 games ahead of the Dodgers, who wallow in 4th place in the NL West. It's not just that they're losing. The Dodgers look lost. Outfielder Matt Kemp getting picked off right after plate umpire Joe West used Casey Blake's bat to remind Blake of the dimensions of the batter's box was a perfect capsule of the series. Kemp is a magnificently-talented specimen who seems to find a way to lose.
The Giants may or may not win the division or make the playoffs (I still think they're a better-than-even shot to do it). But put a fork in the Dodgers. They're done.