ATLANTA -- Arodys Vizcaino managed to escape potential ninth-inning disaster while helping the Braves claim a 6-5 win over the Dodgers in Game 3 of the National League Division Series on Sunday night at SunTrust Park.Now, the question is whether he'll be physically capable of handling his role as closer
ATLANTA -- Arodys Vizcaino managed to escape potential ninth-inning disaster while helping the Braves claim a 6-5 win over the Dodgers in Game 3 of the National League Division Series on Sunday night at SunTrust Park.
Now, the question is whether he'll be physically capable of handling his role as closer if the Braves need to call upon him in Monday afternoon's Game 4.
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"I'll check with him first," Braves manager Brian Snitker said. "He'll have the next day off [on Tuesday]. If he feels good, I'm going to go with him."
Somewhat indicative of where they have been all season with their bullpen, the Braves entered the postseason with Vizcaino as their most comfortable option to use as a closer. That's even though the veteran right-hander missed nearly three months because of an inflamed right shoulder and before mid-September, it was uncertain whether he would return.
Showing his mettle and arm strength, Vizcaino escaped a jam he after the ninth inning began with Joc Pederson singling off the right-field wall to cap a 10-pitch at-bat. Justin Turner followed with a walk. The closer then responded by recording consecutive strikeouts of Player Page for Max Muncy and Manny Machado.
Pederson and Machado advanced when Kurt Suzuki could not handle the 1-2 slider that missed Machado's bat, putting the potential tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position. But they were left stranded when another slider concluded James Dozier's game-ending strikeout.
"There was a little pressure, but thank God we were able to get out of that inning," Vizcaino said. "That's what we expect from ourselves, it's what the manager expects and that's why he gives me that trust."
Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for MLB.com since 2001.