Mikey Williams/Los Angeles Dodgers

It’s one thing, if it’s your standard, to call the 2018 Dodgers failures for not winning the World Series. It’s another thing — and a counterproductive thing — to call the 2018 Dodgers a bad team.

Put another way …

Say your marching order for the Dodgers is “World Series or bust.” And now they’ve busted. Does it make sense to lump them with the other 28 teams who busted as well?

Yes, it’s true that if you don’t bluntly assess the weaknesses of a team, even one that won 92 regular-season games, eight playoff games and a National League title, you are at risk of underreacting. And that can be harmful toward the goal of winning the World Series next year.

Were the Dodgers miles behind the AL champs? Some think the Dodgers were a worthy opponent who played badly. Others think the Dodgers were overmatched from the get go. For my part, I am not under any illusion that the better team in the World Series lost. I want the Dodgers to get better.

But if you can’t, even in the throes of disappointment, understand that, while failing, the Dodgers had the ability and approach to win those 100 games and a pennant, you are at risk of overreacting. And that can be just as harmful.

A lot of people are blaming analytics, for example — in ways that have completely perverted what the word means. Any decision they disagree with — even decisions that were clearly hunches played by Dave Roberts — falls under the umbrella of the dreaded analytics. Meanwhile, they treat the Red Sox, one of the most analytically advanced teams in baseball, as if they were managed by a man sitting in cross-legged serenity atop a high cliff.

But tonight isn’t my night to debate analytics. Whatever your theory about the Dodgers’ World Series failure might be — analytics, platoons, blind faith, magic beans — whatever your theory is, it also has to account for all the success they had. You have to be able to explain why a team that was so mortally flawed still won 100 games.

P.S.: If your answer was that “the NL competition stunk,” you’re not trying.

P.P.S: If your answer is “that approach may work over 162 games of the regular season, a division tiebreaker game and the first two rounds of the playoffs, but not in the World Series,” you’re not trying.