The Dodgers were on the brink of elimination, and they finally got to the Nationals bullpen to force a winner-take-all game 5 back in Nationals Park on Thursday.
Joe Ross only lasted 2 2/3 innings as he was victimized by a flyball that fell between Trea Turner and Jayson Werth and that led to two runs that made the score 4-2 in favor of the Dodgers. Oliver Perez came in for relief and held the Dodgers scoreless in 1 1/3 innings for work. Reynaldo Lopez worked 2 innings of work and gave up one run making it a 5-2 game.
The Nationals offense then in a dramatic inning scored 3 runs that were all charged to Clayton Kershaw on hits by Danny Espinosa and Trea Turner along with a walk to Bryce Harper to load the bases. Kershaw left the game and on the first pitch from Baez to Jayson Werth he was hit by the pitch to force in a run. Daniel Murphy hit a line drive single to score 2 runs and tie the game at 5-5.
Dusty Baker was trying to conserve his pitchers and stuck with Blake Treinen to face multiple lefty batters and Chase Utley singled home the winning run in the 8th inning to take a 6-5 lead.
In the top of the 9th, Kenley Janssen quickly went 1-2-3 to close out the game.
On a night where the Nats had plenty of baserunners, Anthony Rendon and Ryan Zimmerman combined for an 0-8 night to strand multiple runners. Trea Turner went 3-5 with 3 runs scored and Werth and Murphy each had 2 hits. Murphy had 4 RBIs in the game.
The series will shift back to Washington D.C. Time to change the Nats luck and Dusty’s luck on the arm of Max Scherzer and bat of Daniel Murphy.
Dusty Baker: lost 8 straight postseason games in which team would have advanced a round with win. That's longest such streak in MLB history
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 12, 2016
“Biggest game of my life,” Max Scherzer said about pitching in the decisive game on Thursday.