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  • July 1, 2019
    If Bradley Zimmer is Waluigi... then who is Mario? That and
    other important questions in this week’s episode of Let’s Talk
    Tribe."WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections NewsAnalysis & EditorialsCleveland
    Indians prospects & minor leaguesGame RecapsTransactionsLet's Talk Tribe
    PodcastLet’s Talk Tribe Podcast Ep. 107: Waluigi With SpeedIf Bradley Zimmer is
    Waluigi... then who is Mario? That and other important questions in this week’s
    episode of Let’s Talk Tribe.ESTShareTweetShareShareLet’s Talk Tribe Podcast Ep.
    107: Waluigi With SpeedIt might be hard to
    believe ,
    but you’re actually allowed to be excited about the Indians this season — and
    there are plenty of valid reasons to be. Just not the reasons that
    clickbait headlines want you to believe. Also, Bradley Zimmer is obviously
    Waluigi, but who is the Mario of the Indians? Wario? Luigi?We’re tackling the
    important questions this week. Topics[2:07] - Looking ahead is better than
    looking at the past. [2:35] - Reasons to be optimistic in 2019.[8:22] - What
    exactly are the Indians doing?[10:46] - If Bradley Zimmer is Waluigi, who is
    Mario? [13:17] - The clickbait of baseball. [24:22] - Momentum and
    marketing.[30:53] - Answering your questions.
    for checking out the latest episode of Let’s Talk Tribe! If you enjoyed that
    episode and want to hear more, please consider subscribing to us on iTunes,
    Spotify, and YouTube and maybe leaving a nice little review or comment. Every
    little bit helps us keep this bad boy going.Intro and outro music: Inner Cell by
    King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard. The Los Angeles Dodgers needed a one-game
    playoff to win the NL West last year.That appears to have been an
    aberration.After six straight victories, the Dodgers now lead the division by 13
    games Willie
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    , and that’s a little more in line with their norm of late.
    Los Angeles has won the last six NL West titles, and twice the final margin was
    in double digits. Now the Dodgers own the best record in baseball and are in the
    middle of another midseason surge.The Dodgers are 15-6 this June, after going
    17-9 in that month last year and 21-7 in 2017. Their last three games have been
    particularly pulsating, each of them won on a walk-off home run by a rookie.
    Will Smith, Matt Beaty and Alex Verdugo delivered those dramatic swings against
    Colorado, the team that took the division race with Los Angeles down to the
    163rd game last season.The Dodgers seem eager to make sure it doesn’t come to
    that in 2019. Their 3.16 team ERA is the best in the major leagues, and they
    lead the National League in on-base percentage and slugging percentage. Cody
    Bellinger is an MVP candidate, and Max Muncy is following his 2018 breakout with
    another fine offensive season.On the
    mound ,
    Hyun-Jin Ryu is 9-1 with a 1.27 ERA, while Clayton Kershaw and Walker Buehler
    have shined as well.The Dodgers are still seeking their first World Series title
    since 1988, but what they’ve already done within their division is noteworthy.
    The team that started this streak of NL West titles in 2013 included Kershaw,
    Ryu and Kenley Jansen, but many standouts from that team have moved on. Los
    Angeles opened the NL Division Series in 2013 with the following eight position
    players in the starting lineup: Carl Crawford, Mark Ellis, Hanley Ramirez,
    Gonzalez Barry
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    , Yasiel Puig, Juan Uribe, Skip Schumaker and A.J. Ellis.None
    of them play for the Dodgers now, but Los Angeles has remained among the game’s
    elite teams thanks to new contributors like Bellinger, Corey Seager and Muncy.
    The trio of walk-off homers by rookies this past week was appropriate for this
    franchise.Elsewhere around the majors:ONE AWAYThe Yankees had their eight-game
    winning streak snapped Sunday against Houston, but they kept another run going:
    New York has a home run in 26 consecutive games. The major league record is 27,
    set by Texas in 2002.The Yankees can match that Monday night when they host
    Toronto.HIGHLIGHTSt. Louis fans were ready to give Albert Pujols a warm welcome
    when he played there for the first time since leaving via free agency after the
    2011 season. Pujols received a standing ovation Friday night, and on
    Saturday Madison
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    , he rewarded the fans with a home run and a curtain
    call. On Sunday, after Pujols and the Angels beat the Cardinals 6-4, Pujols
    exchanged jerseys with St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina.Honorable Mention: Nomar
    Mazara hit a home run for Texas on Friday night that StatCast said would have
    gone 505 feet unimpeded.LINE OF THE WEEKMax Scherzer’s line Wednesday night — no
    runs, four hits, two walks and 10 strikeouts in seven innings — wasn’t that
    unusual for the Washington ace. But on this night, he was pitching with a black
    eye and a broken nose after bunting a ball off his face in batting practice the
    previous day.Scherzer led the Nationals to a 2-0 win over Philadelphia. They’re
    still under .500, but they’re 13-7 this month and are only three games behind
    the NL’s second wild-card spot.