Dodgers Team News

Dodgers: Craig Kimbrel Lights Out Since Debut of Disney Song

In the kingdom of isolation that is being a big-league closer, it looks like Craig Kimbrel is back to being the king.

All season long, the fans have been howling like the swirling storm inside Kimbrel, and he hasn’t always been able to keep it in, heaven knows he’s tried.

But now, the embattled Dodgers closer has new entrance music, and he’s rising like the break of dawn.

What started as a one-off for Women’s Day over two weeks ago has turned into the change Kimbrel needed. His wife, Ashley, chose Idina Menzel’s “Let It Go” from the animated movie Frozen as Craig’s walkout song for that special night, and Kimbrel came on to close out a 10-3 victory over the Marlins that afternoon. He threw a perfect inning on just ten pitches, and as we said at the time, we thought he might be onto something:

The biggest question might be about Craig Kimbrel’s song. Ashley Kimbrel chose Idina Menzel’s “Let It Go” from Frozen, which replaced Kimbrel’s usual “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns N’ Roses. Kimbrel responded by having his first 1-2-3 inning in a while, and while a philosophy or psychology class could spend hours discussing why Ashley chose that song, it’s hard to deny the results.

We’re in favor of Kimbrel continuing to walk out to “Let It Go” as long as it’s working. It could make an outstanding chapter on the 2022 World Series DVD.

Kimbrel has had five more appearances since that night and has allowed just two baserunners, both on walks in his second inning of work on August 29. It’s funny how some distance makes everything seem small, and the fears that once controlled Kimbrel can’t get to him at all now. He’s pounding the strikezone, pitching with confidence, and pitching like a man who’s never going back — the past is in the past.

If the Dodgers get this version of Kimbrel in October — the man who walks in, turns away, and slams the door — their entire bullpen is solidified. Dave Roberts said a couple weeks ago, in so many words, that September would be a time to see what Kimbrel can do, to test the limits and break through. Instead of only pitching in save situations, there’s no right, no wrong, no rules for Kimbrel. He’s free.

Here Kimbrel stands, his season ERA down to 3.88, and here he’ll stay. Let the storm rage on. The cold never bothered Craig Kimbrel anyway.

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Jeff Snider

Jeff was born into a Dodgers family in Southern California and is now raising a Dodgers family of his own in Utah. During his previous career as an executive at a technology company, he began writing about baseball in his spare time. After leaving corporate America in 2014, he started doing it professionally. Jeff wrote and edited for Baseball Essential for years before joining Dodgers Nation. He's also the co-host of the Locked On Dodgers podcast, a daily podcast that brings the smart fan's perspective on our Boys in Blue. Jeff has a degree in English from Brigham Young University. Favorite Player: Clayton Kershaw Favorite Moment: Kirk Gibson's homer will always have a place, but Kershaw's homer on Opening Day 2013 might be the winner.

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