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Here's a pattern the Dodgers hope to keep repeating: Owning the NL West

June 1, 2010 |  7:43 am

Dodgers2_300 If it happens in a single season, maybe you just call it one of those things. If it happens again, however, then you have yourself one interesting pattern.

And right now, the Dodgers have a very interesting pattern going. As in owning the National League West.

Last year it was a key factor in their winning the division, the Dodgers going 46-26 against the West. That accounted for nine more victories in the West than any other division opponent.

Two months into 2010, and it’s happening again.

"It’s still early," Manager Joe Torre said.

True, but not that early. The season is closing in on the one-third mark, and the Dodgers are again cleaning up against NL West foes.

They are 16-5 against teams within their own division, winning 11 of their last 13. They have a winning record against every team from the West.

They are growing particularly fat against the Diamondbacks.

Monday’s strange 5-4 victory over Arizona left the Dodgers' record at 6-1 against the Diamondbacks this season.

The Dodgers won the West last year by three games over Colorado. And they won 13 more games in the division than the Rockies.

Maybe it is early, but these division games do matter. It’s a big reason why after a miserable April, the Dodgers are only two games back of the Padres, who are a very respectable 15-11 against West teams.

When races are close, as the NL West figures to be all season, these inner-division games carry extra significance. Which right now, bodes well for the Dodgers.

--Steve Dilbeck

Photo: Dodgers shortstop Rafael Furcal greets center fielder Matt Kemp after the pair scored on a throwing error by Arizona second baseman Kelly Johnson in the eighth inning Monday night. Credit: Gus Ruelas / Associated Press