Game 156: Dodgers clinch division title in their final at-bat to send off Vin Scully.

Charlie Culberson

Charlie Culberson trots jubilantly from third base to home plate to complete his 10th-inning home run Sunday, only the second walk-off home run of his major league career. (Getty Images)

After paying tribute to Vin Scully early, the Dodgers walked off the Colorado Rockies on a Charlie Culberson home run in the 10th inning, clinching their fourth straight National League West title. The box score is here.

Jose Fernandez‘s friends in the Dodgers clubhouse remembered the Marlins pitcher, who died Sunday morning in a boating accident.

Brandon McCarthy thought his baseball career was in jeopardy two weeks ago.

Brandon McCarthy

Brandon McCarthy pitched 5 1/3 innings against the Colorado Rockies in his first start since Aug. 13. (Getty Images)

When Brandon McCarthy took the mound for the Dodgers on July 27, he began the day with a sparkling 2.39 earned-run average. He’d only pitched four games, but they were encouraging. It appeared the veteran right-hander could pick up where he left off before the Tommy John surgery that wiped out 14 months of his career.

That day, McCarthy threw 83 pitches in four innings against the Tampa Bay Rays. Only 51 were strikes. His control betrayed him a little more with each successive start: 85 pitches and 48 strikes against the Rockies; 65 pitches and 31 strikes against the Red Sox; 51 pitches and 22 strikes against the Pirates. That was on Aug. 21. His ERA after that game: 3.63.

McCarthy then went on the disabled list with stiffness in his right hip. As it turns, his most pressing problem was much worse.

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Game 155: Dodgers win, but clinching party remains on hold.

Chase Utley

Dodgers second baseman Chase Utley lunges toward first base following through on a throw in a 14-1 win over the Colorado Rockies on Saturday. (John McCoy/Staff photographer)

The Dodgers couldn’t stop scoring in a 14-1 rout of the Colorado Rockies, but a San Francisco Giants win put their National League West clinching party on hold. The box score is here. The photo gallery is here.

Rich Hill was scratched from Sunday’s start as a precautionary measure; Brandon McCarthy will start instead.

Sunday is Vin Scully’s final game behind the microphone at Dodger Stadium. In his final pre-retirement press conference, Scully discussed the time he was asked to run for governor of California.

Scully’s style touched generations of fans, writes Ryan Kartje. Scully was unique in style and substance, writes Mark Whicker.

Game 154: Dodgers are one win away from clinching the National League West.

Vin Scully

Vin Scully reacts as Dodgers manager Dave Roberts brings out a check for $50,000 that was donated to the Jackie Robinson Foundation in his name. (Hans Gutknecht/Staff photographer)

The Dodgers beat the Colorado Rockies in familiar fashion, 5-2, and can clinch the National League West title as early as tomorrowThe box score is here.

The photo gallery from the Vin Scully Appreciation Day ceremonies is here. In case you missed it, here’s what happened.

The Dodgers’ active roster swelled to 39, shifting the focus of the final week to potential playoff roster cuts.

Here’s what they were saying after the game. None of these interviews were included in my game story because of deadlines; the game ended at 11:26 p.m., followed by fireworks(!):

Continue reading “Game 154: Dodgers are one win away from clinching the National League West.” »

Game 153: Yasmani Grandal muscles up as Dodgers pester Rockies to death.

The Dodgers were annoying, or good, or maybe both in a 7-4 win over the Colorado Rockies. The box score is here.

Yasiel Puig hopes to play in the Dominican Winter League, which starts play in October and ends in December. Puig is beginning to do more to help the Dodgers than hurt them, writes columnist Mark Whicker.