NLDS Game 3: 10-4 Over and Out! Dodgers Stunning Two-out Seven Run Rally Gives Them Series Lead

Things were looking super grim for the Dodgers in the sixth inning of game 3 of the NLDS at National’s park on Sunday night at Washington D.C. Don’t tell me you weren’t worried. I was petrified. After all things were not going well. They were down by two, the ghost of Anibal Sanchez was mowing down the Dodger bats with off-speed pitches and the Nationals had just brought in game 1 starter Patrick Corbin to pitch in relief. He was the guy the Dodgers couldn’t hit earlier in the series. The Dodgers were losing and time was running out. Dodger fam was starting to panic. Then the bats woke up. The Dodgers built a massive two-out seven run rally in that sixth inning to silence the Washington faithful and give the Dodgers the series lead and some great momentum. The Dodgers beat the Nationals 10-4 in game 3.

The sixth inning proved why the Dodgers are so dangerous and why they won 106 games in the regular season. Their lineup is powerful and relentless. They are able to put up crooked numbers at any point in the ball game, and that’s just what they did against Washington in that fateful sixth frame. It was the veterans that led the Dodgers to victory in game 3. Russell Martin was the star of the game, going 2 for 4 with a big clutch two-run double in that sixth inning rally. He had four runs driven in on the night including a two-run home run. Muncy hit a monstrous home run. Justin Turner had three hits and guys like Enrique Hernandez, David Freese, and yes the slumping Cody Bellinger contributed with key hits.

But before all that happened, the Dodgers looked about as dead as you can get. Hyun-jin Ryu gave up a two-run home run to Juan Soto in the bottom of the first and the Dodgers were losing immediately. We’ve seen this show before. Remember in game 2 when Clayton Kershaw gave up three runs early? The ghost of Anibal Sanchez kept the Dodgers flummoxed with a bevy of off-speed offerings and occasional 90 MPH heaters. By the sixth inning rolled around, Sanchez had struck out 9, and allowed just four hits through five innings. Some lengthy at-bats ran up his pitch count, allowing the Dodgers to get into the meaty part of the Washington bullpen.

NLDS Game 3 Dodgers Lead Series 2-1

Dodgers   10 14 0

Nationals    4 6 0

WP-Ryu-1-0

LP-Corbin-0-2

HR-Soto-1-Muncy-2-Turner-1-Martin-1

Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images

While Sanchez was pitching impressively, the Dodgers squandered a bases loaded opportunity in the top of the first. After two walks and a Turner single, Bellinger and A.J. Pollock both struck out. Pollock especially has been struggling. He’s 0 for 11 so far in this series, and I am not sure he’ll get a hit before this series comes to a close. In the top of the fifth, it was the offensive spark plug Muncy who woke the Dodgers up with a massive bomb to right. That cut the score to 2-1.

In the sixth inning, Sanchez had made too many pitches. The Nationals couldn’t use Max Scherzer (who starts tomorrow) nor could they use Stephen Strasburg who pitched and won game 2. So they called on left hander Patrick Corbin. The Dodgers smelled blood in the water. Bellinger led off the inning with a single to right. After Corey Seager and Pollock both whiffed, the Dodgers had to go to the bench with Gavin Lux’s spot due up. David Freese, postseason hero poked a single through the hole in right to extend the inning. After going down in the count 0-2, Martin smoked a double off the low wall in left to score two and put the Dodgers on top 3-2. Mood:EXCITED.

The onslaught continued. Chris Taylor worked a key walk and then Enrique Hernandez’s pinch-hit double scored two more runs to give the Dodgers a 5-2 lead. After Max Muncy was intentionally walked, Washington went back to the bullpen bringing in Wander Suero. Justin Turner then homered into the Dodger bullpen and the boys in blue went up by an 8-2 score. Nationals Park was stunned.

It wasn’t over though. The Dodgers still had to get some outs. Unfortunately Joe Kelly was not the man to get those outs. He struggled in the bottom of the sixth. He gave up three walks, a single and a wild pitch before he was finally removed. Dave Roberts woke up and brought in Julio Urias to restore order. The youngster got Asdrubal Cabrera to fly out to right which brought in a run. The Nationals made a huge base running blunder when former Dodger Howie Kendrick got tagged out between second and third on the sac fly. Then Urias got Michael A. Taylor to pop out. The Dodger lead was now 8-4.

The Dodgers almost scored off of Fernando Rodney in the top of the seventh. They loaded the bases, but couldn’t score. Urias pitched another scoreless frame in the bottom of the seventh. Adam Kolarek continued his string of very useful pitching by striking out Soto to lead off the bottom of the eighth. Kenta Maeda finished the frame without incident.

Russell Martin’s two-run home run in the top of the ninth extended the Dodger’s lead to 10-4. Kenley Jansen came in to pitch the bottom of the ninth and struck out two in a perfect inning. The Dodgers win it 10-4! The Dodgers are now one win away from reaching their fourth consecutive NLCS. They’ll have to beat Max Scherzer tomorrow afternoon in game 4. He’ll go for the Nationals as they try to keep their season alive and bring the series back to Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers will send Rich Hill to the mound to try and wrap up the series. Expect for the Nationals to use everyone including the kitchen sink. Don’t get cocky. The playoffs are not for the faint of heart.

Yeah I feel you detective Murtaugh. Go Blue.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda's Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic Cheap MLB Tickets

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23 thoughts on “NLDS Game 3: 10-4 Over and Out! Dodgers Stunning Two-out Seven Run Rally Gives Them Series Lead

  1. We will have to win with our bats in Game 4.

    Our bullpen is not ok after today, and Rich Hill won’t go more than 4. Maybe May can give us multiple innings tomorrow.

    Seager and Pollack need to relax and let the game come to them.

  2. Fans need to remove blue koolaid glasses and just admit that our pitching is very good but not great. Not close.

    Buehler is the only one who can potentially deliver an outing that’s approaching dominant. Approaching is the key word there.

    Meanwhile every other contender has at least 2-4 dominant pitchers, and I’m counting relievers here too. None of our pitchers have been dominant except for perhaps Kolarek against a single lefty two out of every three games.

    So we have to win with hitting and defense. That’s how we win this year. Pitching will give up early and late runs, and will need to be of the bend but not break variety.

  3. I also have to say that, with Pollack’s struggles (thus far) we sorely miss Verdugo’s contact bat and cannon arm.

    We need to start Joc , Taylor and Bellinger tomorrow in the OF, and go with Muncy at first and Lux at second. Sit Pollack until we get Scherzer out of there.

    1. I hear ya about the pitching but so far in 3 games Dodgers have held the Nats to 8 runs as compared to Dodger’s 18 in the 3 games so far. But honestly no team really can expect to win a WS without great starting and relief pitching. And the Nats are no where near the challenge the Astros will be for anyone.

  4. That was a WTF game:

    1) WTF, the Dodgers go on a 2-out almost never ending hit parade in the 6th.

    2) WTF, Nats Pitcher complains that no one told him a giant blue bus was about to hit him.

    3) WTF WTF WTF, why is Bert totally asleep at the wheel while Machine Grease Kelly is trying to totally throw away the game. Hell, Bert doesn’t even start to warm up Urias until 5 batters have come to the plate (with no outs being recorded). Talk about totally lost in managing a game, sheez!!!

    4) WTF, Howie Kendricks, way to kill a rally dude. This guy has been awful with his glove and now his baserunning. Thank you Jesus!

    5)WTF Bert!!! Enuff of Pollock already, you have Taylor and Kike just sitting there as Pollock game after game, bat after at bat, proves to be exactly what I said he would be. This dude is the streaky Grandmal-type.

    6)WTF, sorry folks but GasKanley totally was lucky to finish a clean inning, but don’t expect it to continue, he literally didn’t hit one spot yesterday. He left so many pitches centercut, catcher asks for an outside low pitch, GasKanley delivers a centercut meatball, etc. etc. etc. As you know, I have often said if batters just put the bat on their shoulder, GasKanley will walk them.

    7) WTF, True Blue told you the Dodgers would win Game 3 (spoiler alert, True Blue calls his shots, sorry Michael). I hate to say it, but on paper today’s match-up doesn’t favor the Blue, Sherzer vs. a one-legged Dick Mountain (then the game gets turned over early to the Dodgers bully). The one caveat with Sherzer on the mound today, he was so geeked up after one inning in relief in Game 2, he may have shot his wad and spent some valuable juice out of his arm. Based on that, if the Dodgers put some numbers up in the first two innings today, he could very well leave and turn the game over to the Nats bullpen, then Dodgers move onto the next round. The first two innings today will tell the tale for both starters and which team gets the W.

      1. I would have to agree Jimbo, he pushed all the right buttons. And I would sit Pollock today. He is just not hitting. Those 2 hits in the game yesterday had to do wonders for Cody’s confidence. Muncy and Freese are monsters. And thank you Russell Martin for turning back the clock.

        1. Michael, after last year’s WS Turner went to Dodger FO and told them that they MUST, AND I MEAN MUST bring Freese back for another year. Well, If I am Turner I am already going up to Freidman and telling him the same thing for 2020.

    1. I respect your opinion there True, but please learn how to spell Scherzer. Anything can happen in a playoff game. And the bus hit Corbin right in the kisser. Striking out 2 and getting a fly ball out does not mean Kenley was lucky. He got the job done and that is the bottom line right? I do agree with Yueh that right now the Dodgers starters are good. But Buehler struggled even though he did not give up any runs, and he was far from dominant. Kelly was pretty much throwing nothing but breaking balls and that is not his bread and butter. I think it is more a physical issue than anything else. That’s why Gonsolin is in the dugout in case they decide to put Kelly on the shelf. They have beaten Scherzer before. And it was Joc who beat him in DC with a long homer. He is not invincible, no pitcher is. Today is their best chance to win the series and advance. They also beat Strasburg once this year. But he has been far more dominant than Scherzer has this season. Remember, Scherzer put DC in a hole in the wild card game giving up 3 runs. He has not been the same dominant pitcher this year.

      1. Sorry to offend with the misspelling of the opposing pitcher, Scherzer. I think that you and eye just see the game differently, I notice when a pitcher isn’t hitting his spots, regardless of the box schore (see me working?). Missing your spots as a pitcher doesn’t always hurt you but most of the time against better teams, it kills you. That’s precisely one of the major reasons GasKanley has been GasKanley the last two seasons, he doesn’t command his pitches anymore, that inconsistencies messes up all sorts of things on the field. Teams come up with a plan on how they are going to get people out, they try and execute that plan which is very reliant on throwing certain pitches in certain locations to the various hitters. When a pitcher consistently defeats those objectives, all sorts of hurt comes out, such as fielders now in the wrong position and balls being taken home as souvenirs, etc. So getting an out or getting a save in any instance does not mean the pitcher pitched well, often it means he got lucky. That’s where and how I see the game inside the game. Hope that clears things up on what I have been bitching about this season.

        I have to go outside now and German Schmear my bricks, ah I’m at it again.

  5. Hey I get it, you never won a spelling bee. But that’s cool. Jansen was in there for one reason and one reason only, to get some work. He had not thrown in a game for a week. So, mission accomplished. We all know Kenley is not the same pitcher anymore, so why beat a dead horse? Kershaw is not nearly the same guy he was and the entire league has been bitten by the home run bug. But have you noticed, the only HR DC has is the one Soto hit in the first inning last night. The Dodgers have hit six. Enjoy the moment there bud. Oh, by the way, the Dodgers led the league in pitching for a reason. They are a pretty good group. Not overpowering maybe, but they have gotten the job done 108 times so far this year.

    1. Michael, with all that said, I must admit that I didn’t expect what took place in that 6th inning. However, still a concern is yet with this win Dodger hitters STILL struck out 15 times! that’s 44 in 3 games. They may get by the Nats but nothing of course is a guarantee. And believe me I don’t believe there is any NL team that will get by the Astros in a WS. For Dodgers to go deeper in this PS beyond today they MUST cut down on these K’s, it’s ridiculous. If they continue to whiff like this I cannot imagine that they could still win too many more games. But what is a good sign, unlike the most recent PS is that Dodger pitching has allowed only that 1 HR in these 3 games. But I have to believe Roberts may sit Pollock, as he is having a horrific series with what 9 K’s in these 3 games?

    2. VEry true Michael, GasKanley was in there to get some work, for sure. The point is, his work is consistently showing a problem with command. Pointing that out is not beating a dead horse, it is actually pointing out huge problem that is staring them in the eye for the remainder of the post-season. So maybe he was just throwing to be throwing but at this point in his season, I don’t think that would be the case. Now pitching to try and get sharp is what should be happening. We will see today, hopefully, that stretching out his arm did help to sharpen him (don’t hold your breath however).

      Michael, I will try and be more constructive in my conversations with you from this point forward and not just rip you a new one. So “Peace and Love” – Ringo Starr

      I did make several other points that had nothing to do with The Gascan in my WTF post above. Roberts continues to be not ready in both preparing line-ups (yeah Pollock has to sit) and completely asleep in getting his bullpen ready in time to put out a fire. If Howie doesn’t go completely bonehead on the basepaths that 6th inning could have been a total disaster. Howie flat out bailed us out and put the crowd and Nats back on ice.

      1. To be honest there True, I appreciate the effort, but please do not strain yourself. We look at the game a lot differently and that’s cool,,,and for the record, you have never ripped me a new one.

        1. Yeah but hell an olive branch is an olive branch.

          Peace and Love

          The Dodgers are going for the complete platoon advantage versus RH Max Scherzer tonight, starting Matt Beaty in favor of the struggling AJ Pollock. The full lineup: Joc Pederson (RF), Max Muncy (1B), Justin Turner (3B), Cody Bellinger (CF), Corey Seager (SS), Matt Beaty (LF), Gavin Lux (2B), Will Smith (C), Rich Hill (SP)
          You got to like that. BTW Scherzer hasn’t been the same pitcher since returning from the IL this season.

  6. Funny, Dodgers loaded with lefty bats and it is the only righty, Turner, that puts them on the board in the first.

  7. Okay Package, I think it is time for me to use the term Dummy for Bert after watching Mr. Ofer October Pollock PH. Seriously, why just give away an out?

  8. G1, Corbin: 6 innings, 2 runs
    G2, Strasburg: 6 innings, 1 run
    G3, Sanchez: 5 innings, 1 run
    G4, Scherzer: 7 innings, 1 run

    14/19 runs scored off the Nats’ bullpen; can’t happen in G5, with Strasburg, Corbin, and probably Scherzer all available. Hunter Strickland isn’t pitching.

    1. I doubt they go to Corbin after game 3 unless it’s an emergency. Behind strasburg they dont have many options. My guess is they’ll let Strasburg go as long as possible and maybe use Sanchez behind him or maybe Hudson. The Dodgers better figure something out and try to run his pitch count up to get him out of the game early. Buehler has to bring his a-game too. If he gives up anything in the early frames and Strasburg is on again then its probably season over.

  9. As you know, I smell a game five stinker coming on, well I have been smelling that the entire season actually. I fear the worst but hope for the best.

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