Just imagine for a brief moment that the Los Angeles Dodgers were in last place in the National League West division.

Now consider several of the derogatory episodes that have occurred already in 2010: a shrunken payroll, a General Manager openly criticizing player performance, the ongoing saga of a nasty divorce, an unsignable first-round draft choice, an alleged barroom squabble, a string of injuries that would be difficult for almost any Major League squad to overcome, and now a faith healer/visualist/physicist called Vladimir Shpunt, who earned well over six figures to send positive energy over great distances to help the team win.

If indeed Los Angeles was in the basement of the NL West, reporters, columnists and bloggers alike would be having a field day.

But the truth is that not only are the Dodgers in first place in their division, but they currently boast the best record in the entire National League. And as a result, these headlines make feeble appearances in the newspapers and eventually become forgotten. 

Most of the credit needs to be given to the players and the fans, the two largest driving forces of the Los Angeles Dodgers, psychic energy aside.

Despite the national economic woes, already the Dodgers’ fan attendance ranks a respectable third place in the entire Major Leagues, second to only the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Yankees. And this ranking is likely to increase as the season progresses, if patterns of past seasons hold true to form.

Ticket holders and fans across the country who “think” and “bleed” Dodger Blue are the true voice of the Dodgers, and although they may get a bit impatient and a bit choppy with the tongue at times they continue to set the standard for fan bases throughout the Majors.

Even owner and chairman Frank McCourt, and least at one point, had the sensibility to recognize the fans for what they contribute to the success of the Dodgers.

“This is a huge step for the franchise. I think we have the franchise back to a place where the fans know and can expect us to compete every year. I’m so grateful to the fans for their support. You could feel the energy tonight. They willed the team (the 2009 Los Angeles Dodgers) to victory in that seventh inning. To be leading baseball in attendance in this economy, it says a lot about our fans. This is for them.” -Frank McCourt upon the Dodgers clinching the NL West divisional title on Oct. 4, 2009

And let’s not forget about the players, who day in and day out take the field and put forth their best efforts.

Although several Dodger players are among the league leaders in numerous statistical categories, it’s really not fair to single any player out for their productivity because it is evident that the team’s success is predicated on unity and has amazingly positive chemistry.

Even players who fill the roll of pinch-hitters, cover players or substitutes have unexpectedly surprised everyone with their considerable contributions already this season.

Negativity has a horrible effect on any professional sports team, and sometimes it’s almost impossible to dig oneself out of a deep hole. But as any player on any successful team will testify, even the tiniest bit of genuine positivity goes a long way in the dugout; and the Dodgers are riding that wave of positivity right now.

And it’s very obvious that as teammates, at least on the field, they support each other to the highest degree.

Moving forward into the season, it’s apparent that the divorce will get uglier, more injuries are likely to occur, at least half of the draft choices won’t be signed, and the much desired ace starting pitcher won’t be scored before the trade deadline.

But two things remain certain: the players will show up everyday to give their best efforts, and the stadium gates will be open to welcome the stream of Dodger fans willing their team to victory.

The Dodgers don’t need you Mr. Shpunt, both the fans and players have that physical energy, mystic synergism thingy covered already.



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