LOS ANGELES – Mookie Betts hit a home run and scored three runs, Will Smith also went deep and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants 7-2 on Tuesday night to force a deciding Game 5 in their streak. NL division.
The 107-game Giants will host the 106-game Dodgers on Thursday night, with the winner advancing to face Atlanta in the NL Championship Series. The Braves eliminated Milwaukee earlier Tuesday.
The Dodgers managed just five hits in a 1-0 loss – their second shutout loss – in Game 3 to put the defending World Series champions on the brink of elimination. They had as many in the second set on Tuesday and beat 12 in total to support a brief but effective outing by Walker Buehler on three days off.
Buehler went to manager Dave Roberts as early as the Dodgers’ 9-2 win in Game 2 and said he wanted the ball in Game 4 to start on a short rest for the first time in his career. The right-hander allowed one run and three hits in the 4¹ / ₃ inning. He struck out four strikes and walked two of 71 shots.
After releasing a debut single to Evan Longoria and foot batter Steven Duggar, Buehler was given a standing ovation by 52,935 fans waving blue towels.
The Dodgers chased Giants starter Anthony DeSclafani in the second. He allowed two runs and five hits and struck out two.
The Giants went through six pitchers in the fifth, leaving them just three relievers. In the seventh, only backup receiver Curt Casali was available on the bench. He hit by nip in the eighth.
The biting and constant wind that prevailed throughout Game 3 has subsided, leaving only a slight breeze to ruffle the flags of the center field.
Smith hit a two-run homer in the middle in the eighth, increasing the lead to 7-2.
Betts had a homerun in the fourth and his bash-laden sacrificial fly scored Cody Bellinger in the fifth for a 5-1 lead.
The Giants’ points came in top of fifth on Darin Ruf’s RBI against Joe Kelly, and Kris Bryant’s RBI in eighth. All-star wide receiver Buster Posey, a career 0.257 hitter in the playoffs, got 0 for 4.
Buehler was safe at the start, leading the fourth when his shot fell on reliever Jarlin Garcia’s leg for a mistake. Betts followed with a two-run homerun to the right field flag, taking the lead to 4-0.
The Dodgers entered the table in the first with NL batting champion Trea Turner’s double RBI double at center-right who rolled against the wall, scoring Corey Seager, who scored a single.
Chris Taylor’s sacrifice fly made it 2-0 in the second period.
San Francisco had runners on the corners in the second on singles following a withdrawal from Bryant and LaMonte Wade Jr. But Buehler came out of the jam, taking out Longoria on a swinging strike and Mike Yastrzemski on a one-two in the second.
The last playoffs, the Dodgers went 3-0 in playoff games, rallying to a 3-1 deficit to beat Atlanta in the NLCS.