They backed it up with a plus-136 run differential (a fairly absurd figure across just 60 games), and then in the postseason went 13-5 en route to winning the World Series for the first time since 1988.,Because of the still ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, fans weren't permitted to attend MLB games last season until the very last rounds of the playoffs.,The plan right now is for fans to be in attendance at spring training games and regular season games, albeit in limited numbers and in accordance with local guidelines.,Last season, no fans attended any regular season Astros games even as they advanced as far as the ALCS, so they've yet to hear about their transgressions in the typical manner.,Last season, the Padres busted out in a big way, as they won at a .617 clip -- the best win percentage in franchise history -- and returned to the playoffs for the first time since 2006.

I think it’s been very well documented what they did this winter and how they’ve gotten better as an organization over the last two, three years,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said as pitchers and catchers prepared for Thursday’s first workout.,Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman did acknowledge it’s “hard to say” if the Dodgers would have pursued pitcher Trevor Bauer as aggressively in the free-agent market if the Padres hadn’t started the arms race with their acquisitions of Blake Snell, Yu Darvish and Joe Musgrove this winter, fortifying a roster led by third baseman Manny Machado and shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. (third and fourth, respectively in the 2020 National League MVP voting).,Let’s do everything we can to go out next year and do it again,” Friedman said during an appearance on SportsNet LA, summarizing the texts that were going around among members of the Dodgers’ front office in the afterglow of last year’s title.,But as much as the rising threat in San Diego, the challenge for the Dodgers in 2021 is providing validation for last year’s short-season title by winning another in a standard-length season.,“I have argued and would still argue that last year’s circumstances were more difficult than a regular potential grind that we’ve known in the past, all that we’ve ever known,” Roberts said.

Mural artists Brian Peterson, left, and Damin Lujan of Santa Ana created a 35-by-40-foot mural depicting Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers and Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers on a building overlooking the parking lot of Philippe the Original sandwich shop in Los Angeles.,(Photo courtesy of Brian Peterson and Damin Lujan)

David Ahn stands beneath the mural of Kobe Bryant and Mookie Betts he commissioned to be painted on the side of his building at 686 N. Spring St. in Los Angeles, CA.,(Photo by Andy Holzman) read more

“This isn’t just a City of LA problem but a County of Los Angeles problem, so all those cities (in the county) will be part of policing and development.”,Despite No Olympics LA’s advocacy against the Olympic Games, Los Angeles is pressing on with its Summer Olympics plans, but not everyone is ready to welcome the event with open arms.,“At first I was super excited about the Olympics coming to Los Angeles, but sadly I just think that when either a summer or winter city hosts an Olympic Games there’s always a lot of controversy and nightmares that come with the games,” said Estrada.,If the 2028 Olympic Games goes over budget, Los Angeles and California taxpayers will pay for the cost overruns, according to the Legislative Analyst’s Office Olympic Bid report by The California Legislature’s Nonpartisan Fiscal and Policy Advisor.,“I think it’s a bit unjust to spend billions of dollars to host an Olympic Games in Los Angeles and renovate stadiums and renovate public transportation, and build new venues and at the same time Los Angeles is struggling with funding schools, and being one of the most heavily populated cities with homelessness,” said Estrada.

The Capistrano Valley Christian and Calvary Chapel of Santa Ana high school football teams played a game Saturday, Jan. 16, that might have violated CIF and Southern Section rules as well as state health orders that are in place because of the pandemic.,This appears to be the first reported case in the state this school year of two high school teams playing a game in school uniforms and using school equipment despite guidance from state and high school sports officials against such competitions.,The head coaches for Capistrano Valley Christian and Calvary Chapel, which are both private schools and not part of a school district, confirmed Sunday that their teams played a game Saturday at Calvary Chapel that included full uniforms and spectators but with adjusted rules.,The CDPH has placed high school and youth sports into four tiers that are based on a sport’s level of contact and a county’s COVID-19 infection rate.,On Friday, Jan. 14, hundreds of parents and student-athletes attended Let Them Play rallies in Orange County in an attempt to urge state officials to allow for high school and youth sports to resume as soon as possible.

The Capistrano Valley Christian and Calvary Chapel of Santa Ana high school football teams played a game Saturday, Jan. 16, that might have violated CIF and Southern Section rules as well as state health orders that are in place because of the pandemic.,This appears to be the first reported case in the state this school year of two high school teams playing a game in school uniforms and using school equipment despite guidance from state and high school sports officials against such competitions.,The head coaches for Capistrano Valley Christian and Calvary Chapel, which are both private schools and not part of a school district, confirmed Sunday that their teams played a game Saturday at Calvary Chapel that included full uniforms and spectators but with adjusted rules.,The CDPH has placed high school and youth sports into four tiers that are based on a sport’s level of contact and a county’s COVID-19 infection rate.,On Friday, Jan. 14, hundreds of parents and student-athletes attended Let Them Play rallies in Orange County in an attempt to urge state officials to allow for high school and youth sports to resume as soon as possible.

Dodgers fans will be watching every move made by fan-favorite Justin Turner over the next few weeks.,As we all anxiously wait to find out if JT will be returning to Los Angeles, everything he posts on social media will no doubt be thoroughly examined.,The interest in Justin Turner was renewed when the Yankees officially signed DJ LaMahieu to a 6-year deal on Friday.,The Ball Yard in Chatsworth is a private facility that Turner often uses to get his swings in during the offseason with the Dodgers.,The fact that he is taking swings in a local cage only adds to the intrigue of free-agency.

Senior Master Sgt. Michael Lear, AFRS Strategic Marketing Division superintendent, and Master Sgt. Daniel Bedford, AFRS National Events program manager, began working together in 2019.,“I was first introduced to ‘Coach Dan’ (Bedford) through Chief Master Sgt. Michael Johnson (AFRS Chief Strategic Marketing Division superintendent),” Lear said.,Bedford served in the U.S Marine Corps before joining the Air Force Reserve and has a master’s degree in sports psychology, but it was Lear who used his instincts to help Bedford get back in the gym.,“Master Sgt. Bedford’s background in sports psychology is exactly what I needed as I age and require a different training perspective,” Lear said.,Since recovering from his car wreck with the help of Lear as his training partner, Bedford has won the USPA (United State Powerlifting Association) Texas State Bench Press Champion 2020 and the USPA Military National Bench Press Championship.

BALTIMORE ORIOLES–Agreed to terms with INFs Maikol Hernandez, Grabiel Salazar, Carlos Rodriguez Eruviel Castillo, Victor Celedonio, Anderson De La Santos and Angel Tejada and INF/OF Trey Mancini, OFs Wilmer Feliciano, Hector Jimenez, Teudis Cortorreal and Angel Pena and LHPs Deivy Cruz and Elvis Polanco and Cs Yasmil Bucce, Aneudis Mordan and Samuel Basallo on one-year minor league contracts.,OAKLAND ATHLETICS–Agreed to terms with LHPs Sullivan Ribeiro de Almeida and Sean Manaea, OFs Mark Canha, Pedro Pineda, Angel Arvalo and Beyker Martinez, INFs German Ortiz, Matt Chapman, Dayker Baldallo, Ray Garrett and Anderson Machado, RHPs Maosis Hernandez, Jesus Perdigon and Jimmy Rojas, Cs Javier Pariguan, Chris Bassitt, Franke Montas and Lou Trivino on one-year minor league contracts.,LOS ANGELES DODGERS–Agreed to terms with RHPs Dailoui Abad, Miguel Bastardo, Brian Diaz, Jhonny Jimenez, Maximo Martinez, Kelvin Ramirez, Christian Romero, Pedro Santillan, Missael Soto and Michael Vilchez, OFs Juan Alonso and Issac Barreto, Cs Carlos Avila, Jesus Galiz and Thayron Liranzo, INFs Elio Campos, Wilman Diaz and Luis Guerra and LHPs Jorge Carpintero and Sebstian Jimenez on one-year minor league contracts.,PITTSBURGH PIRATES–Agreed to terms with OF Ruben Bizcaya, LHP Antwone Kelly, RHPs Jose Garces, Jesus Clode, Darlin Diaz, Luigi Hernandez and Andres Sierra, OFs Rodolfo de la Cruz, Shalin Polanco, Eddy Rodriguez and Esmerlyn Valdez, INFs Rubel Lebron, Wesley Zapata and John Zorilla, C Miguel Sosa on one-year minor league contracts.,Agreed to terms with INFs Adari Grant, Elias Reynoao, Samil De La Rosa, Anyelo Encarnacion, Yancel Guerrero and Marcelo Perez, C Leonardo Bernal, OFs Carlos Carmona, Christian Avendano, Robelin Lopez, Romtres Cabrera and Jose Suarez and RHPs Esteban Contreras, Carlos De La Cruz and Samuel Fabian on one-year minor league contracts.