Dodger Bats Break Out To Even NLDS

The Los Angeles Dodgers offense finally came to life in a blowout win that evened the series with the San Francisco Giants.

Los Angeles Dodgers' Cody Bellinger (35) is congratulated by Gavin Lux after scoring against the San Francisco Giants during the sixth inning of Game 2 of a baseball National League Division Series Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/John Hefti)

The Dodgers evened up the NLDS with an emphatic 9-2 win in Game 2 over the arch rival Giants.

After getting blanked in the first game, the Dodgers offense broke out on Saturday in a big way. Both starters pitched well, but it was the damage Los Angeles did to the San Francisco bullpen that made the difference.

Whether the Dodgers awoke a sleeping giant or this was just a one-night breakout will determine the outcome of this series.

Defining Moment

The Dodgers offense finally came to life in the sixth inning. Trea Turner doubled to lead off the inning, then after a strikeout of Justin Turner and a walk to Will Smith, the Giants went to the bullpen trailing 2-1.

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Dominic Leone entered to face Cody Bellinger who has had a brutal 2021. Bellinger–who had 47 wRC+ in 2021–came through with a massive two-RBI double to give the Dodgers a 4-1 lead.

AJ Pollock blew the game open with a two-RBI double of his own to make it 6-1.

In the bottom half of the sixth, the Giants got two on with one out trying to work their way back into it. Wilmer Flores lined one up the middle, but Trea Turner made an incredible diving play to save a run.

The run would score on the next play via Brandon Crawford single, but Mookie Betts made an incredible throw to third to end the inning. It prevented the Giants from mounting a rally and the Dodgers held them off from there.

How It Happened

The Dodgers took an early 2-0 lead in the second inning. The Giants intentionally walked AJ Pollock to get to Julio Urías and the Dodgers starter made them pay. Urías lined a single into right that drove in Chris Taylor to open the scoring.

Mookie Betts followed with an RBI single of his own to double the lead. Both singles came off of Gausman’s splitter as the Giants’ ace struggled to find the command early on.

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The Giants would answer right back in the bottom half of the second with a sac-fly from Donovan Solano that cut the lead in half.

Gausman settled in after the second inning, working three straight 1-2-3 innings. Through five he had six strikeouts–five of which were on his splitter–on 74 pitches, retiring 10 straight following Betts’s RBI single.

Urías was fantastic, throwing just 63 pitches and allowing only three hits and a walk through five. He continued his tremendous form in the Postseason–Urías had a 2.79 ERA in 38.1 IP entering the night–and rarely ran into any trouble in the first half of the game.

The most adversity he faced was in the fourth inning when Buster Posey doubled to lead off the inning. However, he got Wilmer Flores to line out, Brandon Crawford to pop out and Evan Longoria to fly out to end the threat.

He was pulled with just 72 pitches through six which felt like an early move from manager Dave Roberts. The decision worked out as the Dodgers bullpen got the job done in the final four innings.

The Dodgers would add three insurance runs in the eighth to make it ugly, headlined by a towering blast from Will Smith.

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Plays Of The Night

Evan Longoria flashed the leather to rob Chris Taylor of a single. The three-time Gold Glover showed why he still has third base on lock even after the Giants acquired Kris Bryant.

Bryant then showed why the Giants trust him to play so many positions with a tremendous diving catch out in center.

The two teams have a travel day tomorrow before Game 3 on Monday in Los Angeles. Max Scherzer takes the mound for LA while the Giants will send former Dodger Alex Wood to the mound.