Given how closely contested all 19 matchups were during the regular season, it’s no surprise the best-of-five National League Division Series between the Dodgers and Giants is tied, 1-1, after two games at Oracle Park.
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know before a pivotal Game 3:
When is the game and how can I watch it?
Game 3 is scheduled to start at 9:37 p.m. ET/6:37 PT on Monday at Dodger Stadium and will be televised on TBS. It is also available to stream on MLB.TV with authentication.
What are the starting lineups?
Giants: The Giants were stymied by left-hander Julio Urías on Saturday, but they’ll go back to their left-handed-heavy lineup against right-hander Max Scherzer on Monday. Tommy La Stella was inserted back into the leadoff spot, and LaMonte Wade Jr. and Mike Yastrzemski started in the outfield, with Yastrzemski moving up to the two-hole. Kris Bryant will be playing first base for the first time as a Giant and the first time in the postseason in his career. He made 10 starts at first with the Cubs, his last coming on June 28.
Dodgers: The Dodgers’ lineup came alive in Game 2, but they made some changes ahead of Game 3 with left-hander Alex Wood on the mound for the Giants. The most notable change is that the Dodgers will start Albert Pujols, who posted a .303 average with 10 homers against southpaws since joining the Dodgers on May 17. At 41 years and 268 days old, Pujols will become the oldest player to start a game in Dodgers postseason history. With Pujols starting at first, Cody Bellinger will start the game on the bench. AJ Pollock also got bumped up two spots in the order after his two-hit game on Saturday.
Who are the starting pitchers?
Giants: Wood (10-4, 3.83 ERA), who won a World Series ring with the Dodgers last year, will start Game 3 and attempt to continue to play stopper for the Giants. They are 12-1 when Wood has started after a loss this year. Wood missed nearly three weeks because of COVID-19 last month, but he looked sharp after returning, allowing only two runs over 13 innings over his final three starts of the regular season. He is 0-2 with a 4.76 ERA over three outings against his former club this year.
Dodgers: Scherzer (15-4, 2.46 ERA) will take the mound for the Dodgers. After going just 4 1/3 innings in the NL Wild Card Game against the Cardinals, Scherzer will look to get back on track. Since they acquired him in July, the Dodgers have not lost a Scherzer start.
How will the bullpens line up after the starter?
Giants: Manager Gabe Kapler prefers not to lock his high-leverage relievers into specific roles, but Dominic Leone, Tyler Rogers and Camilo Doval likely will factor into the late-inning mix in close games. Doval is looking more and more like the Giants’ preferred ninth-inning option, though Jake McGee worked a scoreless seventh on Saturday in his first appearance since returning from an oblique injury.
Are there any relievers who are unavailable?
Giants: All of their relievers will be available.
Dodgers: All of their relievers will be available.
Who is hot and who is not?
Giants: Posey is 4-for-8 with a home run and a double over the first two games of this series. Longoria continues to slump, as he’s 3-for-44 over his past 13 games.
Dodgers: Taylor followed up his NL Wild Card Game heroics with a 2-for-4 performance in Game 2. After a slow finish to his season, the first-time All-Star seemingly has found his swing in the postseason. Smith, who homered in Game 2, is also off to a hot start in the NLDS. Justin Turner, on the other hand, isn’t, as he’s 1-for-13 in the first three games of the 2021 postseason. His one hit, however, was a big one -- a solo homer in the NL Wild Card Game.