Taylor hits walk-off HR, Dodgers deck Cards 3-1 in WC match

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A recurring neck injury lowered slumping Chris Taylor from starter to bench player in September.

He proved a pain in the neck to the St. Louis Cardinals in the base of the ninth inning.

Taylor hit a two-run homer to elevate the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 3-1 victory Wednesday night time in a scintillating NL wild-card game.

Justin Turner homered early and the 106-win Dodgers innovative to a ideal-of-five Division Sequence against the NL West champion Giants, who won 107 video games to hardly keep off rival Los Angeles for the division title. Game 1 is Friday night time in San Francisco.

“That’s gonna be fun. Yeah, two of the ideal regular-year documents of all-time. We have been battling all 12 months, so I expect a tough-fought series,” Taylor claimed.

The Dodgers celebrated on the field prior to heading into their clubhouse to continue the celebration. Beer and champagne have been poured about the heads of shirtless, goggle-sporting players.

The sellout group of 53,193 hung on every pitch as the stress of a tie activity constructed from the fourth inning on. Enthusiasts waved blue towels, futilely urging on the several balls released into the outfield only to see them caught in a winner-get-all matchup amongst two of the National League’s most storied and profitable franchises.

Cody Bellinger drew a two-out stroll from T.J. McFarland and stole next in the ninth, when virtually each supporter was on their feet, anxiously waiting around to see if the defending World Collection champions could pull off a win.

“That’s big, recognizing I never have to do also much,” said Taylor, batting in the No. 9 slot just after moving into to play remaining subject as element of a double swap in the seventh. “It form of settled me down a very little bit.”

Alex Reyes came in to confront Taylor, who despatched a 2-1 breaking ball into the remaining-area pavilion, triggering an explosion of cheers.

“Honestly, I was just trying to hit a solitary. Not striving to do much too substantially,” Taylor said soon after launching the fourth stroll-off homer in Dodgers postseason heritage. “He gave me a great slider to hit and I was in a position to get it up in the air.”

Tale proceeds

Tommy Edman dropped a one-out single into right off nearer Kenley Jansen in the prime of the ninth and stole next. Paul Goldschmidt took a referred to as 3rd strike and Tyler O’Neill went down swinging to finish the menace.

The Dodgers’ bullpen stymied the St. Louis hitters, letting just a pair of singles immediately after the fifth inning.

“The entire bullpen stepped up. We’ve been performing it the whole calendar year,” Jansen mentioned. “Off we go up north now.”

Both groups experienced runners on in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings, but couldn’t drive a operate throughout.

St. Louis concluded for 11 with runners in scoring situation, stranding 11 in general. The Cardinals went on a 17-video game successful streak in September to grab the second wild-card place, only to see their playoff desires squelched.

“That’s a clubhouse entire of men that are hurting,” supervisor Mike Shildt reported.

Dueling aces Adam Wainwright of St. Louis and the Dodgers’ Max Scherzer struggled with their manage early in just the 2nd winner-take-all activity in postseason heritage with two setting up pitchers aged 37-additionally. Wainwright is 40 Scherzer is 37.

“They were being relentless,” Wainwright said of the Dodgers. “We had our odds to acquire that game.”

Wainwright and Scherzer issued two walks apiece by means of the initially 3 innings. Scherzer’s wild pitch led to a operate in the very first and he plunked Harrison Bader in the fourth.

Turner tied it at 1 in the fourth on a leadoff solo shot into the Dodgers’ bullpen in still left. It was the initially homer Wainwright has ever given up on a curveball in the postseason. Turner’s 13 postseason homers are the most in franchise background.

St. Louis led 1- when Edman scored on Scherzer’s wild pitch. Edman singled primary off, stole 2nd foundation and went to 3rd when O’Neill fouled out to proper.

Scherzer still left with just one out in the fifth immediately after offering up a leadoff one to Edman and a wander to Goldschmidt. He paced the dugout with his hands on his hips. Previous Cardinal Joe Kelly got out of the jam after Goldschmidt arrived at 3rd on a wild pitch.

Scherzer authorized a person run and a few hits, struck out four and walked three from his hometown group.

“Pins and needles all night time extended. What an hard work by our men,” a shirtless Scherzer mentioned through a postgame interview with TBS on the industry. “Now we social gathering.”

Wainwright gave up one run and four hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out 5 and walked two.

The Dodgers experienced Wainwright on the ropes in the third, loading the bases with just one out. He was in just a single ball of strolling in the tying run just before Trea Turner broke his bat grounding into an inning-ending double perform on a 3-2 pitch.

IN THE Dwelling

Nationals outfielder Juan Soto sat guiding the plate putting on a Trea Turner jersey from his time in Washington. Soto finished 2nd to Turner, his previous Nats teammate, for the NL batting title. Turner gained his initially batting crown with a .328 common.

Soto mentioned he required to support his teammates and “see their experience when I shock them.”

It labored. Turner didn’t know Soto was coming.

“When I saw him for the duration of the game I was laughing for him to be wearing my jersey,” he mentioned.

Nationals hitting mentor Kevin Lengthy was sitting down up coming to Soto wearing Scherzer’s jersey.

Dodgers co-proprietors Magic Johnson and Billie Jean King sat together nearby.

UP Up coming

Cardinals: Pitchers and catchers report for spring education in mid-February.

Dodgers: Open the greatest-of-5 NLDS versus San Francisco on Friday. They have been 9-10 versus the Giants this year.

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