Where would the Los Angeles Dodgers be in 2018 without Matt Kemp? Better yet, who thought that would even be a legitimate question? The surprising National League All-Star came through for the Dodgers yet again with a walk-off two run double against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday.
Kemp famously played for the Dodgers from 2006-2014, establishing himself as one of the league's best players at the time. His best season was in 2011, when he drove in 126 runs and was one homer shy of joining the elite 40-40 club in home runs and stolen bases. He was then shipped to the Padres and later the Braves, where he was by no means a bad player, but hardly the same level of superstar.
Even though Kemp was re-acquired by the Dodgers in a salary dump (the Dodgers sent first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and pitchers Scott Kazmir and Brandon McCarthy to the Braves), Kemp has been one of Los Angeles' most productive contributors. Hitting .283 with 19 home runs and 72 RBI, Kemp has been consistently hitting in the heart of the order.
Matt Kemp with the MONSTER bomb and September baseball is here pic.twitter.com/KYlC0mUXDe— Starting 9 (@Starting9) September 2, 2018
This was the second day in a row that Kemp smoked one off of Archie Bradley, who has arguably been Arizona's best reliever this season. He has been shaky of late, though, and it has shown, with Kemp's three-run shot off him on Saturday and the double on Sunday.
Winning three out of four games in the series, the Dodgers pushed themselves a game ahead of the Diamondbacks for first place in the National League West. They have Matt Kemp to thank for that.