Dodgers rout Braves 13-6 to take 2-1 lead in NLDS
LOS ANGELES — The Dodgers fell behind early, took the lead, and let Atlanta tie it up. Then their big hitters cut loose.
Carl Crawford hit a three-run homer, Juan Uribe added a two-run shot and Los Angeles routed the Atlanta Braves 13-6 on Sunday night for a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five NL division series.
Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig each had three hits and scored three times on a huge night at the plate for the Dodgers, who matched a franchise record for runs in a postseason game. Brooklyn beat the New York Yankees 13-8 in Game 2 of the 1956 World Series.
“It’s 25 guys out there that we come here every day and we put in hard work on the field,” Ramirez said. “Everything I do, I do for my team and for the city. When I see a big smile from my teammates and my fans, that makes me happy.”
After losing 4-3 in Game 2 to let the Braves even the series, the Dodgers returned to the offensive form they showed during a 6-1 victory in the opener on the road.
“Guys were unhappy with the way they played, so we wanted to get back to playing the way we did the first game,” Crawford said. “We knew it was going to be at home in front of our home crowd, and we were going to have some extra energy for that. Hopefully, we can like wrap it up while we’re here at home.”
Los Angeles can advance to the NL championship series with a victory in Game 4 on Monday night. Ricky Nolasco pitches for the Dodgers against veteran Freddy Garcia.
Crawford made the play of the game when he tumbled head over heels to catch an eighth-inning foul ball at the low retaining wall in left field. The speedy leadoff man also scored three times, including once in the eighth when the Dodgers made it 13-4.
“I’m fine. I landed in a way it didn’t hurt,” he said. “I didn’t think the ball was going to go into the stands. It kept floating and I didn’t see the wall coming. I felt myself flipping over. Good thing is I held onto the ball, so that’s all that matters.”
Chris Capuano won in relief of ineffective rookie Hyun-Jin Ryu in a game that took 4 hours, 1 minute. The 13 runs allowed by the Braves equaled the most in club history for a postseason game.
Atlanta starter Julio Teheran took the loss, giving up six runs and eight hits in 2 2-3 innings.
“He just left some balls out over the plate and made some mistakes,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “With this club, if you do that, you’re going to look down at a gas tank with a lighted match.”
Los Angeles rallied in the third to regain the lead for good after Atlanta tied it in the top of the inning. After that, the Braves didn’t manage much besides Jason Heyward’s two-run homer in the ninth.
By then, it was way too late.
Teheran and Ryu both made inauspicious postseason debuts in the first matchup of rookie pitchers in the playoffs since 2007. Neither stayed around long.
In addition to being shaky on the mound, Ryu made two major mistakes in the field before giving way to Capuano, who spent most of the season in the rotation before moving to the bullpen.
With the Dodgers ahead by six runs in their first home playoff game since 2009, fans waved their blue souvenir towels with one hand and made chopping motions with the other in mocking Atlanta’s trademark tomahawk chop.
“I didn’t have my best, and I tried my best,” the 22-year-old Teheran said. “It was just one of those games that you do everything, and the things don’t go as you expect.”
Ryu allowed four runs and six hits in three innings, becoming the first South Korean-born pitcher to start a postseason game in the major leagues.
Despite his rookie status, the left-hander brought a wealth of experience from his native country in becoming the first player to go from the Korean Baseball Organization to the majors. Besides his seven seasons in the KBO, he had pitched in the 2009 World Baseball Classic at Dodger Stadium as a reliever.