The Los Angeles Dodgers got the job done in a do-or-die NLDS Game 4 on Tuesday.
With their season on the line, the Dodgers were able to force a decisive Game 5.
Spirits are high amongst folks in L.A. right now.
But for one Dodgers player, it has been a very frustrating postseason.
Justin Turner, who is typically an elite playoff performer, hasn’t been able to find his footing in the 2021 postseason.
What’s going on with him?
After A Strong Showing In The Wild Card Game, Turner Has Been A Liability In The NLDS
Turner made his presence felt in the Wild Card Game when he launched a game-tying home run in the fourth inning.
The Dodgers, of course, ultimately won the game.
JUSTIN TURNER. GONE.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 7, 2021
After Turner’s blast, it looked like the veteran was going to have another legendary playoff run.
But that hasn’t been the case.
The two-time All-Star is just 1-for-17 in the NLDS against San Francisco.
He has a miserable slash line of .059/.111/.059 in the series, and he has come up empty in some pretty big situations.
Fortunately, the Dodgers have been able to stay afloat without him and get the series to a fifth game, but if L.A. wants to end San Francisco’s season on Thursday night, the team could really use a strong showing from Turner.
Looking At Turner’s Past Postseasons
Turner is widely regarded as one of the best playoff performers in Dodgers history, and that’s why his struggles in the NLDS have been so surprising.
Here's where Justin Turner ranks in #Dodgers postseason history:
80 hits (1st)
13 home runs (1st)
42 RBI (1st)
19 doubles (1st)
41 runs (1st) pic.twitter.com/73R7ObUfG1
— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) October 7, 2021
The 36-year-old has a career slash line of .280/.375/.488 in the playoffs.
He has appeared in 77 postseason games and has homered 13 times, doubled 19 times, and tripled once.
Of course, he was a big part of the Dodgers’ run to the World Series title in 2020.
He posted an OPS of .804 throughout the 2020 playoffs and had an outstanding World Series in which he batted .329 with a 1.066 OPS.
— SnapStream (@SnapStream) October 28, 2020
He also has an NLCS MVP award under his belt from 2017.
In that series, he slashed .333/.478/.667 and homered twice.
Clearly, the guy has an absurdly decorated playoff resume.
But in 2021, the postseason hasn’t been kind to him.
He’ll look to end that trend on Thursday night.
This Can’t Last Long, Right?
Throughout the entire 2021 regular season, Turner delivered in clutch spots.
He posted an OPS of .827 in high-leverage situations.
Moreover, for his career, he has an OPS of .827 in high-leverage spots.
When you add that information to his impressive playoff track record, you’d expect him to be performing well in the 2021 postseason.
But for some reason, he isn’t.
Slumps happen, and in this case, it seems like Turner might just be going through a cold spell at a bad time.
In the regular season, he never went more than four straight games without a hit.
Right now, he’s hitless in three of his last four.
Perhaps he’s on the verge of ending the slump.
But if he doesn’t turn things up in Game 5, there’s a chance the Dodgers’ season could end sooner than hoped.
That’s not what Turner wants, and that’s not what L.A. wants.
All involved parties are hoping to see some improved results from the superstar on Thursday night.