After alternating wins and losses over the last four games, the Dodgers ended that run by winning for the second game in a row against the Braves. A tight 3-2 victory tonight also got them back to their ways of winning series.
Corey Seager played hero in the 8th, driving in the game-winning run with a clutch double.
Walker Buehler says he doesn’t care about the NL Cy Young Award race, but he’s right in the thick of it, and even when he didn’t pitch his best, he continues to turn in quality outings that help his case.
After a quick 1st inning, he needed some help and got it in the 2nd when Mookie Betts reached over the wall in right to rob Travis d’Arnaud of a short homer (shout out to the fans for not interfering).
Despite all my love for Joc Pederson, he betrayed me in the 3rd, doing his usual thing and destroying a fastball that should be way too high to hit out to make it 1-0.
Blondes do have more fun!@yungjoc650 | #ForTheA pic.twitter.com/duS3jDCWsn— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) September 1, 2021
The 4th made things worse, mainly because the run came on two relatively weakly-hit balls. Nevertheless, an Austin Riley single to left and a d’Arnaud double that was hooked down the in line in left made it 2-0.
In the 5th, he had to work around a lead-off single and sacrifice bunt, but Buehler was able to lock it down. Unfortunately that was partially due to Ozzie Albies leaving the game with a bad looking injury.
Buehler didn’t have one of his best starts, because his best is basically a shutout, but he certainly did enough to deserve the win: 7 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 5 K, 92 Pitches.
Opposing the Dodgers was frequent playoff nemesis (from the AL at least) Charlie Morton, who absolutely carved the Dodgers in the first three innings. He struck out six batters in that span, and emphatically worked out of a 2nd inning lead-off double from Justin Turner by punching out the side.
After punching out two more in the 4th, Betts finally got to him in the 5th, smashing his 19th dong of the year to cut the deficit to 2-1. Their second-best chance against Morton followed after a single and a walk, but he worked out of that jam without further mess.
That was all they got against Morton, though, as he gave up just three hits and two walks in his six frames.
Luke Jackson took over in the 7th, which must’ve been a relief to the Dodgers as well. A one-out walk to AJ Pollock was followed by a single to right from Cody Bellinger that cornered the runners. Chris Taylor then pinch-hit for Buehler on his rest day and hit a medium-deep fly to right-center that Joc called off Jorge Soler on and that helped make it a sacrifice fly to tie the game 2-2.
After a Trea Turner check-swing infield single cornered the runners again,Tyler Matzek entered to face Max Muncy and Max tried to ambush him on the first pitch, barely missing a massive three-run homer.
Matzek got the 8th as well and the Dodgers continued to look confident against him. Mookie started things by drawing a confident walk, Turner got ahead 2-0 but flew out, and with Mookie being a pest to Matzek, Corey ripped a double to right-center that gave the Dodgers a dramatic 3-2 lead.
In relief of Buehler, Blake Treinen entered having one of his roughest stretches of the season. Well, so much for that, as he destroyed the top of the Braves order, getting three swinging strikeouts to cruise through the 8th.
Kenley Jansen was back on closing duties in the 9th, getting an infield pop on a jam shot, a strikeout, and another strikeout to seal it emphatically.
Here come the Dodgers.
83-49 on the year for the Dodgers and now just a half game back of the Giants in the NL West.
The series finale will be tomorrow at the same time of 4:10 PM HT/7:10 PM PT/10:10 PM ET with two aces going at it in Max Scherzer and Max Fried.