LOS ANGELES – Come on, it’s Hollywood.

It’s the drama everybody needs to see.

It’s the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants, one of many fiercest rivals in all of sports activities.

And it’s now right here, again in residing coloration, because of Chris Taylor’s two-run walk-off homer within the ninth inning, main the Dodgers to a 3-1 thriller over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday evening within the Nationwide League wild card recreation.

It was the primary time the Dodgers received an elimination recreation at Dodger Stadium since Recreation 7 of the 1988 NL Championship Sequence in opposition to the highly effective New York Mets, again within the days of Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden.

The Dodgers celebrate the walk-off two run home run hit by left fielder Chris Taylor in the ninth inning.

The Dodgers have a good time the walk-off two run house run hit by left fielder Chris Taylor within the ninth inning.

However, oh, was this a magnificence, establishing the fabulous theater of the Giants-Dodgers as soon as once more, with maybe the 2 biggest groups in baseball.

The Giants proved they have been the higher workforce within the common season, profitable a franchise-record 107 video games.

The Dodgers received 106 video games.

Now, we’re about to seek out out who’s the very best workforce in a best-of-five collection starting Friday evening at Oracle Park in San Francisco.

It’s technically the primary time these groups have ever met in postseason. They performed tiebreaker video games in 1951 and 1962, nevertheless it was for the NL pennant, with the postseason not invented till 1969 when the Nationwide League and American League break up into two divisions, creating the 2 championship collection. The wild-card recreation got here into play in 1994 when the league went to 3 divisions.

Is it honest {that a} 106-win workforce was subjected to a worrying elimination recreation?

“Look, you must win your division,’’ Dodgers starter Max Scherzer mentioned earlier than the sport. “We didn’t win our division. We’re in second place.

“There’s no crying in baseball.’’

Actually, this recreation stored the sellout crowd of 53,193 on edge your entire evening, with the Cardinals unable to provide a lone hit with a runner in scoring place in 11 at-bats.

The gang even included Washington Nationals star Juan Soto, who confirmed up sporting former teammate Trea Turner’s jersey with the Nats, making an attempt to rile up the group. He was proven on the videoboard and was booed, with followers remembering how the Nats eradicated them in 2019, solely to show round and present that he was representing the Dodgers.

Actually, Adam Wainwright did every little thing potential to damage the Hollywood script.

He was sensational all through his 5 ⅓-inning stint, with the one actual mistake hanging a 75-mph curveball to Justin Turner that he despatched 401 toes into the Dodger bullpen, tying the sport at 1-apiece.

The one time he actually bumped into hassle was within the third inning when he abruptly misplaced his management and loaded the bases with Trea Turner coming to the plate. Turner labored the rely full, with the sellout crowd on their toes screaming, Wainwright got here again with a curveball, and Turner grounded into an inning-ending double play.

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Justin Turner greeted Wainwright with a leadoff homer within the fourth inning, the thirteenth of his postseason profession, however abruptly, Wainwright discovered his groove. He retired the following seven batters, with out allowing the ball out of the infield, till Trea Turner hit a dribbler down the third-base line for an infield. Cardinals supervisor Mike Shildt, who let Wainwright bat within the fifth inning, got here to the mound and turned the sport to their bullpen, getting every little thing he wanted out of Wainwright.

“I’ve realized a very long time in the past,” Cardinals president John Mozeliak mentioned, “by no means wager in opposition to the person.”

Scherzer pitched nicely sufficient, yielding simply three hits and one run, however labored, and was at 94 pitches when supervisor Dave Roberts got here to the mound with one out within the fourth inning. Scherzer couldn’t consider it. Certain, there have been two runners on board, however he had simply struck out Tyler O’Neill, and struggling Nolan Arenado was on deck.

Scherzer refused to have a look at Roberts, and when Roberts requested for the ball, Scherzer merely shook his hand. Roberts needed to attain into his glove to seize the ball as Scherzer stormed off the mound.

The gang sellout crowd wasn’t positive what to do, cheer Scherzer for his efficiency or boo Roberts for the choice.

The transfer paid off handsomely when Joe Kelly got here in and induced a weak grounder from Arenado and struck out Dylan Carlson, retaining the sport tied at 1-apiece.

Wainwright did every little thing potential to damage the Hollywood script, however the Cardinals by no means may produce within the clutch, giving

The win gave Roberts one other probability to get even with former Giants supervisor Bruce Bochy.

You see, the 2 staged a dinner wager — together with a pleasant bottle of Bordeaux — in mid-summer with Bochy betting that the Giants would dangle on to win the division, whereas Roberts naturally picked his personal workforce.

They are going to be doubling-down within the NL Division Sequence.

The Giants and Dodgers, similar to it was meant to be.

Comply with Nightengale on Twitter: @Bnightengale

This text initially appeared on USA TODAY: Defending World Sequence champion Dodgers survive Playing cards with walk-off win





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