Carpenter, Holliday lead thrilling 10-9 Cardinals comeback over Dodgers in NLDS Game 1
Kershaw vs. Wainwright.
Game 1 of the NLDS between the Dodgers and Cardinals on Friday had all the makings of a pitcher's duel. The Dodgers lefty was fresh off another incredible year in which he led the league in wins and ERA. Waino had also put together a pretty good 2014 campaign -- hitting the 20-win mark for the second time in five years and leading the NL in shutouts. But would the pair be able to keep up their dominant ways in October?
Randal Grichuk, making his postseason debut (yes, against Clayton Kershaw), got things started for the Cards in the top of the first with this solo homer. 1-0, St. Louis.
The score was the same in the bottom of the third, when a Wainwright fastball got a little too up and in on Yasiel Puig. You may remember these two teams have a bit of history in the postseason HPB department.
Although nothing serious came of it, the moment seemed to motivate L.A.'s hitters. Hanley Ramirez drove in Puig with an RBI single to tie things up:
and Carl Crawford gave his team a 2-1 lead with an RBI double:
The Dodgers would tack on two more runs in both the fourth and fifth innings -- making the score 6-1. And Kershaw, besides the first-inning homer (the only hit he gave up through the first 5 2/3 innings) was cruising. Here he is striking out the side in the top of the fourth:
But after a Matt Carpenter homer made it 6-2 in the top of the sixth, the Cards had some momentum going into their turn at bat in the seventh. Three straight hits loaded the bases for Matt Adams. And Adams delivered to pull his team within three.
Jon Jay drove in a run to make the score 6-4, and finally, with two outs and the bases full, Matt Carpenter's RBI double cleared 'em -- giving St. Louis a 7-6 lead and sending Kershaw to the showers.
Kershaw entered the 7th having retired all but two batters. He then retired only two of the eight he faced in that inning.— Dodgers Gameday (@LADGameday) October 4, 2014
The Cardinals would add three more runs on a long Matt Holliday homer, survive a late Adrian Gonzalez two-run homer and hold on to beat the Dodgers 10-9. L.A. threatened to tie the game in the ninth with a runner on and Puig at the plate, but closer Trevor Rosenthal and his 100-mph fastball said, no sir.
The Game Changer
Even though Carpenter's double gave the Cards a 7-6 lead, it was Matt Holliday's seventh-inning three-run bomb that would be the game's deciding factor -- keeping the Redbirds on top even after Adrian Gonzalez's two-run shot in the eighth.
Other Key Players, Plays
Carpenter put on a clinic on both sides of the ball. Along with his three-run double and solo home run, the third baseman scored two runs and made a key defensive play to limit a Dodgers rally in the eighth:
Puig put together a pretty solid performance in the loss -- tallying two hits, three runs and an RBI. Oh, and his glove/cleat game was also on point.
A Dodgers comeback almost happened in the ninth, leaving Dodgers fans hopeful.
Alas, his prayers went unanswered.
The two teams will be back at it on Saturday in Los Angeles. Zack Greinke (17-8) will take the mound for his seventh postseason start (2-2, 4.30 ERA) against Lance Lynn (15-10) and his five October victories. Tune in at 9:30 p.m. EST to MLB Network.